Andy Merolla

Associate Professor

Office Location

SSMS 4415


Interpersonal & Intergroup Communication, Relational Communication, Well-being

Andy Merolla studies the link between interpersonal communication and well-being. His current research analyzes the interrelationships between communication, emotion, and cognition in everyday interaction.


Andy’s research examines various communication processes, such as conflict management, interpersonal forgiveness, and relational maintenance. Using approaches such as experience sampling, his most current research analyzes how patterns of everyday talk (within "social biomes") are associated with social and emotional connection. Some of his recent research also explores the role of communication in constructing hope and the important role that hope plays in managing difficult life situations. Andy’s research can be found in journals such as Communication Monographs, Communication Research, Communication Theory, Human Communication Research, and the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships. At UCSB, Andy teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in communication theory, conflict management, interpersonal communication, and nonverbal communication. In 2021, he received the Distinguished Teaching Award from the UCSB Academic Senate.


Ph.D. (2007), The Ohio State University, Communication

M.A. (2003), West Virginia University, Communication Studies

B.A. (2002), Baldwin-Wallace College, Speech Communication


Recent Journal Articles:


Merolla, A. J., Otmar, C. D., & Salehuddin, A. S. (in press). Past relational experiences and social interaction: Direct, moderated, and mediated associations between relational difficulty, communication, and perception in two samples. Communication Research.

Hall, J. A., Dominguez, J., Merolla, A. J., & Otmar, C. D. (in press). Social bandwidth: When and why are social interactions energy intensive? Journal of Social and Personal Relationships.

Hall, J. A., Pennington, N., & Merolla, A. J. (2023). What mediated social interactions satisfy the need to belong? Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication.

Merolla, A. J., Hansia, A., Hall, J. A., & Zhang, S. (2022). Moments of connection for the disconnected: People with negative relations with others experience less, but benefit more from, positive everyday interaction. Communication Research, 49, 838-862.

Hansia, A., & Merolla, A. J. (2021). Intimate partner violence disclosure among Muslim-Americans: A survey study of disclosure likelihood to varying networks and the roles of relational context, religiosity, and marginalization. Journal of Applied Communication Research, 49, 609-631.

Hall, J. A., Mihailova, T., & Merolla, A. J. (2021). Typicality and volition as fundamental features of everyday relational communication. Personal Relationships, 28, 607-626.

Merolla, A. J., Otmar, C., & Ruvalcaba Hernandez, C. (2021). Day-to-day relational life during the COVID-19 pandemic: Linking mental health, daily relational experiences, and end-of-day outlook. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 38, 1961-1986.

Merolla, A. J., Bernhold, Q., & Peterson, C. (2021). Pathways to connection: An intensive longitudinal examination of state and dispositional hope, day quality, and everyday interpersonal interaction. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 38, 1961-1986.

Dominguez, J., Bowman, S., Hall, J., & Merolla, A. (2020). Working hard to make a good impression. The relational consequences of effortful self-presentation. Communication Research Reports, 37, 276-285

Hall, J. A., & Merolla, A. J. (2020). Connecting everyday talk and time alone to global well-being. Human Communication Research, 46, 86-111.

Kam, J., Merolla, A. J., & High, A. C. (2020). Latinx immigrant youth’s indirect and direct family-undocumented status disclosures in relation to received supportive communication and depressive symptoms. Communication Research, 47, 599-622.

Merolla, A. J., Hall, J. A., & Bernhold, Q. (2019). Perseverative cognition, distracted communication, and well-being in everyday social interaction. Personal Relationships, 26, 507-528.

Bernhold, Q., Dunbar, N. E., Merolla, A. J., & Giles, H. (2018). Face threats and facework during a hurtful conflict: Extending identity implications theory. Human Communication Research, 44, 127-154.

Merolla, A. J., & Kam, J. A. (2018). Parental hope communication and parent-adolescent constructive conflict management: A multilevel longitudinal analysis. Journal of Family Communication, 18, 32-50.

Kam, J. A., & Merolla, A. J. (2018). The influence of hope communication on documented and undocumented Latina/o high school students’ college intentions across an academic year. Communication Monographs, 85, 399-422.

Merolla, A. J., & Harman, J. L. (2018). Relationship-specific hope and constructive conflict management in adult romantic relationships: Testing an accommodation framework. Communication Research, 45, 339-364.