Walid Afifi

Interpersonal Health Communication
Director of the Center for Middle Eastern Studies

Contact Phone


Office Location

SSMS 4129


Interpersonal Communication, Uncertainty and Information Management, Nonverbal Communication, Relational Communication, Communities Experiencing Trauma


Walid A. Afifi (PhD, University of Arizona) is an author on over 70 articles, chapters, and books, recently served as Chair of the Department of Communication Studies at the University of Iowa (2013-2016), occupied the role of Associate Editor for both the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships and Personal Relationships, and was elected as chair of the Interpersonal Division for both the National Communication Association and the International Communication Association. His program of research revolves around uncertainty and information-management decisions and has led to the development and refinement of the Theory of Motivated Information Management.  That work has increasingly focused on immigrant communities and/or communities experiencing trauma.  He teaches classes related to interpersonal communication, nonverbal communication, relational communication, and uncertainty.  He is committed to research, teaching, and service that involves and empowers all communities, and has been recognized for that commitment by UCSB’s Resource Center for Sexual and Gender Diversity through an Esteemed Ally Award. His program of life revolves around, and the (usually) calming influence on his personal experiences of uncertainty are, his wife, Tammy, their two children (Leila and Rania), and two dogs (Maddi and Charles Jackson).