Erin Sahlstein Parcell

Professor, Dept. Chair
 Johnston Hall 237


PhD, Communication Studies, University of Iowa
MA, Communication, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
BA, Speech Communication, Iowa State University

Research Interests

My research currently centers on communication within and about military families. Emerging from my interests in long-distance communication, I have studied military family communication across deployment (pre, during, and post), and recently started a project focusing on LGBT+ service members’ and spouses’ experiences within the military pre- and post- Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell and the repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act. I primarily employ qualitative methods for my research (e.g., in-depth interviews) but have participated in several meta-analyses and survey design studies. I encourage students, both graduate and undergraduate, to contact me if they are interested in joining my research. My future projects will continue addressing military family topics as well as other long-distance relationships. I am also interested in studying parenting, specifically disciplining children and why parents choose to use certain tactics over others.

Courses Taught

Marital and Family Communication
Conflict Management
Qualitative Methods
Long-distance communication

Issues in Interpersonal Communication
Long-distance Communication
Marital and Family Communication
Conflict Management
Research Methods

Selected Publications

Adebayo, C. T., Sahlstein Parcell, E. M., Mkandawire-Valhmu, L., & Olukotun, O. (2021). African American women’s maternal healthcare experiences: A critical race theory perspective. Health Communication, 2021.
Peck, B. S., & Sahlstein Parcell, E. M. (2021). Talking about mental health: Dilemmas U.S. military service members and spouses experience post deployment. Journal of Family Communication., 2021.
Adebayo, C. T., Walker, K., Hawkins, M., Olukotun, O., Shaw, L., Sahlstein Parcell, E. M., Dressel, A., Luft, H. S., & Mkandawire-Valhmu, L. (2020). Race and blackness: A thematic review of communication challenges of the Black community within the U.S. health care system. Journal of Transcultural Nursing, 31(4), 397-405.
Cronin-Fisher, V., & Sahlstein Parcell, E. M. (2019, February). Making sense of dissatisfaction during the transition to motherhood through relational dialectics theory. Journal of Family Communication, 19(2), 157–170.
Sahlstein Parcell, E. M., & Baker, B. M. (2018). Relational dialectics theory: A new approach for military/veteran-connected family research. Journal of Family Theory & Review, 10(3), 672-685.
Sahlstein Parcell, E. M. (2017). The United States military: Sites of intergroup discourses. Oxford encyclopedia of intergroup communication.
Valenzano, III, J. M., Broeckelman-Post, M. A., & Sahlstein Parcell, E. M. (2016). Communication pathways.
Cramer, E., Tenzek, K., & Allen, M. R. (2015). Spirituality, social support, and the communicative role of the chaplain in veteran populations. Sahlstein Parcell, E. M., & Webb, L. (Eds.). A communication perspective on the military: Interactions, messages, and discourse, 81-99. New York: Peter Lang.