Erin Sahlstein Parcell

Professor, Department 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 interpersonal and family relationships. A primary area of my work focuses on long-distance relationships, including college dating couples and deployed military marriages/families. I most often employ qualitative methods for my research (e.g., in-depth interviews) but have participated in several meta-analyses and survey design studies. A secondary area for my work focuses on gun violence in southeastern Wisconsin, in particular the stories community members share about their experiences. I am on an interdisciplinary team seeking to address this issue by, in part, helping to elevate the voices of gun violence survivors via our living archive. I encourage students, both graduate and undergraduate, as well as community members to contact me if they are interested in participating in my existing projects or to start new ones.

Courses Taught

Graduate:                                                                                                                                                              Seminar in Interpersonal Communication
Marital & Family Communication
Qualitative Research in Communication
Advanced Qualitative Methods in Communication: Interviewing

Undergraduate:                                                                                                                                        Introduction to Interpersonal Communication                                                                                              Communication in Human Conflict                                                                                                                  Communication in Marital & Family Relationships
Qualitative Research in Communication

Selected Publications

Sparrow, D. M., Sahlstein Parcell, E. M., Gerlikovski, E., & Simpson, D. N. (2023). Microaggressions toward people with disabilities. M. S. Jeffress, J. Ferris, J. M. Cypher, & J. Scott-Pollock (Ed.). The Palgrave handbook of disability and communication, 67-80. Palgrave.
Sahlstein Parcell, E. M., & Timmerman, L. M. (2023). To ask or not to ask: Uncertainty and information management within a military family during and after a deployment. S. O’Shay & S. LeBlanc (Ed.). Casing the family: Theoretical and applied advances in family communication. Kendall-Hunt.
Sahlstein Parcell, E. M., & Romo, D. C. (2022, September). Queering the Study of U.S. Military Family Communication. I. West (Ed.). Oxford encyclopedia of queer studies and communication, 1–14.
Kim, S., & Sahlstein Parcell, E. M. (2022). Construct-validating humility: Perceptions of a humble doctor. Frontiers in Communication, 13, 1-19.
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.