0 Douglas Gaerte

Douglas Gaerte

Douglas Gaerte

Professor of Communication; Chair, Department of Communication

Teaching Philosophy

Communication is central to everything we do in life. My greatest joy as a professor is watching my students improve in their ability to communicate effectively in a broad range of situations. Whether it’s engaging new people in conversation, building stronger friendships, establishing healthy family dynamics, presenting professionally in a business context, leading an effective group discussion, or teaching a class, I want my communication students to have the knowledge and confidence they need to achieve their goals for a given situation. In every class I teach, and in numerous outside-of-the-classroom experiences, I try to model good communication myself while striving to create as many opportunities as possible for my students to practice their communication skills in a range of contexts.   We learn by doing, and the success of our majors after graduation is a testament to the work that we do in our department.


  • Ph.D., Indiana University  (1995)
  • M.A., Indiana University  (1987)
  • B.S., Grace College (IN)  (1983)

Courses Taught

  • Introduction to Communication Theory
  • Presentational Speaking
  • Interpersonal Communication
  • Organizational Communication
  • Oral Performance of Literature
  • American Public Address

Professional Memberships/Associations

  • Christianity and Communication Studies Network
  • National Communication Association

Professional Experience/Achievements

  • Frequent speaker for campus and community groups. Conduct workshops on organizational effectiveness, small group communication, leadership, marital communication.
  • Frequently serve as MC or moderator for various campus and community events.
  • Voiceover work and narration for video and for various public performances.
  • Public address announcer for New York Collegiate Baseball League team.

Research Interests

  • The public uses of rhetoric, especially in political discourse, public advocacy, and in the rhetoric of various social movements (abolition, civil rights, women’s suffrage, labor movement).
  • Effective communication for leaders (motivation, teamwork, creating a vision).
  • Propaganda, and especially war propaganda.
  • Communication in interpersonal relationships, and especially the important role of face-to-face communication in a culture saturated with media.


  • Presentations and training sessions for Erie Community College, Grace College, Leadership Allegany, the Allegany County Chamber of Commerce.
  • Paper presentations at the National Communication Association meetings and the New York State Communication Association.

LinkedIn Profile


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