Sarah Tracy

Herberger Professor
Faculty
TEMPE Campus
Mailcode
1205

Biography

Sarah J. Tracy studies stressful workplace issues such as burnout, work-life balance, faking emotions, and workplace bullying, as well as positive types of communication such as compassion, engagement, and generosity.  Through hanging out in the backstage areas of organizations and talking to employees, she has provided insight on correctional officers, cruise ship activity directors, 911-calltakers, and medical staff.  She works with a vibrant group of professors, graduate students, and community members as co-director of The Transformation Project, examining new possibilities related to collaboration, health, and work-life wellness.  She is author of two books (on on organizational change and another on research methods) and more than 60 published essays. Her favorite courses to teach include “Communication and The Art of Happiness,” “Emotion and Organizations," "Being a Leader" and "Advanced Qualitative Research Methods."  Dr. Tracy aims to develop peoples’ 'on the court' practice in their work, scholarship, and life—where they not only learn 'about' but also learn 'to be.'

Education

Ph.D. - Communication Studies, University of Colorado, Boulder

M.A. - Communication Studies, University of Colorado, Boulder

B.A. - Public Relations & Communication, University of Southern California

Google Scholar

Research Interests

organizational communication, emotion and wellness at work, compassion, leadership, qualitative research methods

Publications

  • Books

  • Tracy, S. J. (2013). Qualitative research methods: Collecting evidence, crafting analysis, communicating impact. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley-Blackwell. (340 pages). Reviews available here.
  • Deetz, S., Tracy, S. J., & Simpson, J. L. (2000). Leading organizations through transition: Communication and cultural change. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage (232 pages).
  • Book Chapters in last five years

  • Tracy, S. J., & *Donovan, M. C. J. (2018). Moving from practical application to expert craft practice in organizational communication: A review of the past and OPPT-ing into the future. In P. J. Salem & E Timmerman (Eds.), Transformative Practices and Research in Organizational Communication (pp. 202-220). Hershey, PA: IGI Global.
  • Tracy, S. J., & Malvini Redden, S. (2016). Markers, metaphors, and meaning: Drawings as a visual and creative qualitative research methodology in organizations. In K. D. Elsbach, and R. M. Kramer (Eds.), Handbook of qualitative organizational research: Innovative pathways and ideas (pp. 238-248).  New York: Routledge.
  • Tracy, S. J. (2014). Emotion and communication in organizations. In W. Donsbach (Ed.), Concise International Encyclopedia of Communication. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley-Blackwell.
  • Tracy, S. J., & Geist-Martin, P. (2014). Organizing ethnography and qualitative approaches. In D. Mumby and L. L. Putnam (Eds.), Sage handbook of organizational communication, 3rd ed. (pp. 245-270). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
  • Lutgen-Sandvik, P., Tracy, S. J., & Alberts, J. K. (2013). Prevalence, perception, degree, & impact of adult bullying in the American workplace. In P. Lutgen-Sandvik (Ed.), Adult Bullying—A Nasty Piece of Work (pp. 12-33). St. Louis, MO: ORCM Press.
  • Tracy, S. J., Lutgen-Sandvik, P., & Alberts, J. K. (2013). Explaining the unexplainable: The painful experiences of workplace bullying. In P. Lutgen-Sandvik (Ed.), Adult Bullying—A Nasty Piece of Work (pp. 86-110). St. Louis, MO: ORCM Press.
  • Lutgen-Sandvik, P., Tracy, S. J., & Alberts, J. K. (2013). Communicative nature of bullying and responses to bullying. In P. Lutgen-Sandvik (Ed.), Adult Bullying—A Nasty Piece of Work (pp. 175-193). St. Louis, MO: ORCM Press.
  • Lutgen-Sandvik, P., & Tracy, S. J.(2013). What we know about workplace bullying: A Review. In P. Lutgen-Sandvik (Ed.), Adult Bullying—A Nasty Piece of Work (pp. 324-357). St. Louis, MO: ORCM Press.
  • Journal Articles (in last 5 years)

  • * Donovan, M. C. J., & Tracy, S. J. (In Press). Critical pedagogy meets transformation: Creating the being of communication activists. Communication Education, 66, 378-380.
  • Tracy, S. J. (2017). Practical application in organizational communication: A historical snapshot and challenge for the future. Management Communication Quarterly, 31(1), 139-145.
  • Tracy, S. J., & Huffman, T. P. (2017). Compassion in the face of terror: A case study of recognizing suffering, co-creating hope, and developing trust in a would-be school shooting. Communication Monographs, 84, 30-53. doi: 10.1080/03637751.2016.1218642 [75% effort]
  • Dev, S., * Hoffman, T. K., Kavalieratos, D., Schwenke, D., Heidenreich, P. Wu, W., Tracy, S. J. (2016). Barriers to Adoption of Mineralocorticoid Receptor Antagonists in Patients with Heart Failure: A Mixed-Methods Study. Journal of the American Heart Association, 5(3) e002493. doi: 10.1161/JAHA.115.002493  (11 pages).
  • * Hinrichs, M. M., Seager, T. P., Tracy, S. J., & Hannah, M. A. (2016). Innovation in the knowledge age: Implications for collaborative science. Environment Systems and Decisions, 1-12. DOI: 10.1007/s10669-016-9610-9 [25% effort]
  • Tracy, S. J. (2016). Buds bloom in a second spring: Storying the male voices project. Qualitative Inquiry, 22, 17-24. DOI: 10.1177/1077800415603397
  • * Scarduzio, J. A., & Tracy, S. J. (2015). Sensegiving and sensebreaking via emotion cycles and emotional buffering: How collective communication creates order in the courtroom. Management Communication Quarterly, 29, 331-357. Lead Article.
  • Dev, S., * Hoffman, T., Kavalieratos, D., Schwenke, D., Heidenreich, P., Wu, W. C., & Tracy, S. (2015). Barriers to adoption and monitoring of mineralocorticoid receptor antagonists in a VA medical center. Journal of the American College of Cardiology, 65(10), A847.
  • * Way, A. K., Zwier, R. K., & Tracy, S. J. (2015). Dialogic interviewing and flickers of transformation: An examination and delineation of interactional strategies that promote participant self-reflexivity. Qualitative Inquiry, 21, 720-731. DOI: 10.1177/1077800414566686
  • Tracy, S. J., *Franks, T., *Brooks, M. M., *Hoffman, T. K. (2015). An OPPT-in approach to relational and emotional organizational communication pedagogy. Management Communication Quarterly, 29, 322-328.  
  • Rivera, K. D., & Tracy, S. (2014). Embodying emotional dirty work: A messy text of patrolling the border. Qualitative Research in Organizations and Management, 9, 201-222. Highly Commended paper by 2015 Emerald Literati Network Awards for Excellence. http://www.emeraldgrouppublishing.com/authors/literati/awards.htm?year=2015
  • Bisel, R. S., Barge, J. K., Dougherty, D.S., Lucas, K., Tracy, S. J. (2014). A round-table discussion of “big” data in qualitative organizational communication research. Management Communication Quarterly, 625-649.
  • Tracy, S. J. (2014). Fieldwork horse-assery: Making the most of feeling humiliated, rebuffed, and offended during participant observation research. Management Communication Quarterly, 28, 459-466. doi. 10.1177/0893318914536965.
  • Tracy, S. J., Eger, E. K., Huffman, T. P., Malvini Redden, S., Scarduzio, J. A.  (2014). Narrating the backstage of qualitative research in organizations: A synthesis. Management Communication Quarterly, 28, 423-432. doi. 10.1177/0893318914536964.
  • Allen, J. A., Scott, C. W., & Tracy, S. J., Crowe, J. (2013). The signal provision of emotion: Using emotions to enhance reliability via sensemaking. International Journal of Work, Organisation, and Emotion.
  • *Malvini Redden, S., Tracy, S. J., & Shafer, M. (2013). A metaphor analysis of recovering substance abusers’ sensemaking of medication assisted treatment. Qualitative Health Research, 23, 951-962.
  • *Way, D., & Tracy, S. J. (2012). Conceptualizing compassion as recognizing, relating and (re)acting: An ethnographic study of compassionate communication at hospice. Communication Monographs, 79, 292-315. Spurred performance, “A Good Death”, by Lou Clark, April 2013.
  • Tracy, S. J.  (2012). The toxic and mythical combination of a deductive writing logic for inductive qualitative research. Qualitative Communication Research, 1, 109-141.
  • Lutgen-Sandvik, P., & Tracy, S. J. (2012). Answering five key questions about workplace bullying: How communication scholarship provides thought leadership for transforming abuse at work. Management Communication Quarterly, 26, 3-47. Lead Article. Featured on SAGE publication’s "Management Ink".

Courses

Summer 2018
Course Number Course Title
COM 799 Dissertation
Spring 2018
Course Number Course Title
COM 382 Classroom Apprenticeship
COM 452 Communication of Happiness
COM 691 Seminar
COM 792 Research
COM 799 Dissertation
Fall 2017
Course Number Course Title
COM 499 Individualized Instruction
COM 604 Theory Construction in Comm
COM 609 Adv Qual Research Meth Comm
COM 692 Research
COM 792 Research
COM 799 Dissertation
Summer 2017
Course Number Course Title
COM 452 Communication of Happiness
COM 692 Research
COM 799 Dissertation
Spring 2017
Course Number Course Title
COM 494 Special Topics
COM 499 Individualized Instruction
COM 690 Reading and Conference
COM 792 Research
COM 799 Dissertation
Fall 2016
Course Number Course Title
COM 382 Classroom Apprenticeship
COM 499 Individualized Instruction
COM 604 Theory Construction in Comm
COM 690 Reading and Conference
COM 691 Seminar
COM 792 Research
COM 799 Dissertation
Summer 2016
Course Number Course Title
COM 692 Research
COM 799 Dissertation
Spring 2016
Course Number Course Title
COM 499 Individualized Instruction
COM 609 Adv Qual Research Meth Comm
COM 690 Reading and Conference
COM 692 Research
COM 792 Research
COM 799 Dissertation
Fall 2015
Course Number Course Title
COM 382 Classroom Apprenticeship
COM 494 Special Topics
COM 499 Individualized Instruction
COM 604 Theory Construction in Comm
COM 690 Reading and Conference
COM 792 Research
COM 799 Dissertation
Summer 2015
Course Number Course Title
COM 452 Communication of Happiness
COM 799 Dissertation
Spring 2015
Course Number Course Title
COM 382 Classroom Apprenticeship
COM 452 Communication of Happiness
COM 494 Special Topics
COM 690 Reading and Conference
COM 792 Research
COM 799 Dissertation
Fall 2014
Course Number Course Title
COM 382 Classroom Apprenticeship
COM 452 Communication of Happiness
COM 604 Theory Construction in Comm
COM 691 Seminar
COM 692 Research
COM 792 Research
COM 799 Dissertation
Summer 2014
Course Number Course Title
COM 792 Research
COM 799 Dissertation
Spring 2014
Course Number Course Title
COM 792 Research
Fall 2013
Course Number Course Title
COM 792 Research
COM 799 Dissertation

Presentations

  • Tracy, S. J. The promise of talk for transforming work-life scripts. Presented at the National Communication Association, San Francisco (Nov 2010).
  • Tracy, S. J., & Wong, T. S. Can we be positive yet critical? Making a case for the study of positive emotion at work. Presented at the National Communication Association, San Fransisco (Nov 2010).
  • Tracy, S. J. An eight-point conceptualization of quality in qualitative research: Distinguishing mean practices from end goals in our work. Paper presented to the National Communication Association. San Francisco (Nov 2010).
  • Tracy, S. J. Endorsing Equity and Applauding Stay-at-Home Moms: How male voices on work-life reveal aversive sexism and flickers of transformation. National Center for Women & Information Technology (Nov 2010).
  • Tracy, S. J. Nightmares, Demons & Slaves: How communication research helps us "see", understand and combat workplace bullying. Keynote Speaker for James Madison Universitys 32nd Annual Communication Studies Conference: Communi (Apr 2010).
  • Tracy, S. J. Endorsing Equity and Applauding Stay-at-Home Moms: How male voices on work-life reveal aversive sexism and flickers of transformation. The University of North Carolina-Charlotte Communication Studies and Organizational Science Program (Apr 2010).
  • Tracy, S. J. The criteria controversy: Why qualitative research is still judged by functionalist yardsticks, and what we can do about it. Qualitative Research in Management and Organization conference. Anderson School of Management, Unive (Apr 2010).
  • Tracy, S. J. Engaging scholarship through phronesis, white papers, media relations, and web presence. National Communication Association. Organizational communication preconference on engagement (Nov 2009).
  • LeGreco, M., & Tracy, S. Discourse tracing and the qualitative study of social change. Presented to the National Communication Association. Chicago, IL (Nov 2009).
  • Tracy, S. J. (2009). (Dialoging About) Care as a Common Good'. Annual meeting of the Organization for the Study of Communication, Language and Gender, Los Angela (Oct 2009).
  • Tracy, S. J., & Rivera, K. D. Multiple and varied male voices: How male executives viewpoints on public work-life intersect with their roles and practices in the private sphere. Western States Communication Association, Mesa, AZ (Feb 2009).
  • Tracy, S. J. Panty-waisted, sound-bitten, limp-wristed, and mediated: The joys and challenges of workplace bullying as public scholarship. Western States Communication Association, Mesa, AZ (Feb 2009).
  • Tracy, S. J. "Dont Eat The Paste" Paper for The sustainable self: Exploration of work/life wellness through individual, organizational, and social action. The annual meeting of the Western States Communication Association, Mesa, AZ (Feb 2009).
  • Tracy, S. J. & Rivera, K.D. "Body matters: How embracing our unconventional bodies is key to the ethnographic adventure" during the full-day ethnography preconference seminar: Performing Unconventional Identities. National Communication Association, San Diego, CA (Nov 2008).
  • Tracy, S. J. w/ Cliff Scott and Elizabeth Richard. "But what if the research questions really didn't come first?": The paradoxes and challenges of methodological conventions and interpretive qualitative research. National Communication Association. San Diego (Nov 2008).
  • Hess, J. A., & Tracy, S. J. Finding your first job: The job search and interviewing process: Getting the most from your graduate education in communication. National Communication Association. San Diego (Nov 2008).
  • Alberts, J, Tracy, Sarah, Trethewey, A, Montoya, Y, Riforgiate, S. Retheorizing Domestic Division of Labor. National Communication Association (Nov 2006).
  • Montoya, Y, Tracy, Sarah. Exploring the intersections of everyday practices and discourses of gender at work. International Communication Association - Dresden, Germany (Jun 2006).
  • Tracy, Sarah. Addressing burnout in correctional officers: A structural approach. Western States Communication Association, Palm Springs, CA (Feb 2006).
  • Tracy, Sarah. Theorizing future directions on work-life transition/balance research: Crystallizing frames for work-life. Western States Communication Association, Palm Springs, CA (Feb 2006).
  • Tracy, Sarah. Top four papers in organizational communication. Western States Communication Association, Palm Springs, CA (Feb 2006).
  • Trethewey, A, Tracy, Sarah, Alberts, J. Collaboration, community, and confidence. Presenter for panel workshop entitled "From Idea to Article". Western States Communication Association, Palm Springs, CA (Feb 2006).
  • Tracy, Sarah. Occuptional identity: What differentiates those who choose to work behind bars?. National Communication Association (Nov 2005).
  • Tracy, Sarah, Alberts, J. Why define myself as a low-status organizational victim?: The challenges of telling stories about workplace bullying. National Communication Association (Nov 2005).
  • Tracy, Sarah, Myers, K, Scott, C. Transforming complexity and absurdity to comedy and identity affirmation: A grounded multisite analysis of humor and organizational sensemaking. National Communication Association (Nov 2005).
  • Tracy, Sarah. Designing, teaching and managing the qualitative communication methods course. National Communication Association (Nov 2005).
  • Alberts, J, Lutgen-Sandvik, P, Tracy, Sarah. Escalated incivility: Analyzing workplace bullying as a communication phenomenon. International Communication Association (Jun 2005).
  • Tracy, Sarah. Finding the feeling of workplace bullying: A qualitative analysis of bully target narratives, drawings and metaphors. Fifth annual UC-Davis Conference on Qualitative Research (Mar 2005).
  • Lutgen-Sandvik, P, Tracy, Sarah, Alberts, J. Burned by bullying in the American workplace: A first time study of U.S. prevalence and delineation of bullying "degree". Western States Communication Association (Feb 2005).
  • Tracy, Sarah. Performing organizations, organizing performance: Negotiating a third space between performance studies and organizational communication. Western States Communication Association (Feb 2005).
  • Tracy, Sarah. Paradoxes of the humanized organization: Lessons learned from the qualitative study of correctional officers. National Communication Association (Nov 2004).
  • Tracy, Sarah, Lutgen-Sandvik, P, Alberts, J. Is it really that bad? Exploring the emotional pain of workplace bullying through target narratives, drawings and metaphors. National Communication Association (Nov 2004).
  • Lutgen-Sandvik, P, Tracy, Sarah, Alberts, J. Investigating bullying in the United States: A communicative approach. 4th International Conference on Bullying and Harassment in the Workplace (Jun 2004).
  • Tracy, Sarah. Moving beyond dissonance for understanding the discomfort of emotion labor: A qualitative analysis of correctional officers. Western States Communication Association (Feb 2004).
  • Tracy, Sarah. Myths or consequences: Widening the circle of the public work (life) or private (work) lives. Western States Communication Association (Feb 2004).
  • Tracy, Sarah, Scott, Clifton. Sexuality, masculinity and taint management among firefighters and correctional officers: Getting down and dirty with "America's heroes" and the "scum of law enforcement.". National Communication Association (Nov 2003).
  • Tracy, Sarah, Trethewey, A. Producing the real self--fake self dichotomy: A critical examination of organizational discourse and identity. International Communication Association (May 2003).
  • Tracy, Sarah. Getting into an organization to do research. Organizational communication. International Communication Association (May 2003).
  • Tracy, Sarah. Let's Talk About Sex: The Commodification and Organization of Sexualities. Western States Communication Association (Feb 2003).
  • Tracy, Sarah. Scholarship on stage: The researchers, artists and audiences of ethnotheatre. Western States Communication Association (Feb 2003).
  • Tibbles, P, Messman, S, Tracy, Sarah. An examination of how internet usage may enhance learning for two versions of the basic course: A live large-lecture and a television broadcast lecture. National Communication Association (Nov 2002).
  • Tracy, Sarah. Contradiction and paradox in a total institution of mistrust. National Communication Association (Nov 2002).
  • Tracy, Sarah. Emotion and correctional officers: A study of emotion norms, performances, and unintended consequences in a total institution. National Communication Association (Nov 2002).
  • Tracy, Sarah. Navigating the limits of a smile: A case analysis through creative analytic practice ethnography. National Communication Association (Nov 2002).
  • Tracy, Sarah, Myers, K, Scott, C. Humor as organizational sense-making: A qualitative multisite analysis of dirty workers. National Communication Association (Nov 2002).
  • Tracy, Sarah, Trethewey, A. Theorizing the Persistence of the "Real" Self: A Critical Examination of Organizational Discourse, Identity, and Power. National Communication Association (Nov 2002).
  • Tracy, Sarah. Managing fractured identities in total institutions: Intersections among societal stereotypes, organizational constructions and private understandings. Western States Communication Association (Feb 2002).
  • Sandvik, Pam, Alberts, Janet, Tracy, Sarah. The Communicative Nature of Workplace Bullying and Responses to Workplace Bullying. Organizational Communication Panel
  • Tracy, Sarah, Alberts, Janet, Rivera, Kendra. How to Bust the Office Bully. Spotlight Panel on Workplace Bullying

Honors/Awards

2016-2018 Jeanne Lind Herberger Chaired Professor (elected by faculty peers; recognizes excellence in scholarship; The Hugh Downs School of Human Communication, ASU)

2015 Emerald Literati Network Awards for Excellence, Highly Commended article. http://www.emeraldgrouppublishing.com/authors/literati/awards.htm?year=2015

Top Four Paper Award, Organizational Communication Division, National Communication Association, 2015

Grazier Keynote Scholar, University of S. Florida, April, 2015 http://communication.usf.edu/about/grazier/

University of N. Carolina-Charlotte Communication Week Keynote Lecturer, April, 2015

Marsico Visiting Scholar, University of Denver, January, 2014

Bill Eadie Distinguished Award for Top Scholarly Article from the Applied Communication Division of the National Communication Association, 2012

Top Four Paper Award, Health Comm. Division, National Communication Association, 2012

Top Four Paper Award, Organizational Communication Division, Western States Communication Association, 2011

Keynote Speaker, James Madison Universitys 32nd Communication Studies Conference. Getting Our Hands Dirty: Communicating, Organizing & Making a Difference, 2010

Published Article of the Year Award, Ethnography Division, National Communication Association, 2010

Top Paper Award, Ethnography Division, National Communication Association, 2010

Published Article of the Year Award, Applied Communication Division, National Communication Association, 2007

Promotion and Tenure Exemplar  Arizona State University (Named by University President as one of six faculty exemplars across the ~40 university P&T cases in 2006)

Published Article of the Year Award, Ethnography Division, National Communication Association, 2005

Top Paper Award, Organizational Communication Division, Western States Communication Association, 2005

Top Paper Award, Organizational Communication Division, Western States Communication Association, 2004

Winner, Gerald R. Miller Outstanding Dissertation Award, National Communication Association (across all divisions), 2001

Honorable Mention (First Runner Up), W. Charles Redding Dissertation Award, Organizational Communication Division, International Communication Association, 2001

Top Four Paper, Ethnography Division, National Communication Association, 2001

Top Paper, Organizational Communication Division, International Communication Assoc., 2001

Top Four Paper & Top Student Paper, Language & Social Interaction Division, International Communication Association, 1999

Top Four Paper, Language and Social Interaction Division, National Communication Association, 1997

Editorships

Editorial Board Member for:

Journal of Applied Communication Research, 2014-present

Communication Monographs, 2013-present

Qualitative Research Reports in Communication, 2013-present

Management Communication Quarterly, 2002-present

Women and Language, 2010-2015

Communication Studies, 2002-2006; 2008-2015

Qualitative Communication Research, 2011-2013

Western Journal of Communication, 2006-2013

Communication Yearbook, 2011

Communication Theory, 2008-2011

Human Relations, 2007-2010

International Journal of Management Studies & Research, 2008-2009

Communication Research Reports, 2005-2007

Professional Associations

<p>National Communication Association (NCA) International Communication Association (ICA) Western States Communication Association (WSCA) Organization for the Study of Women and Language (OSCLG)</p>

Service

  • Professional Leadership and Service Positions

    Nominating Committee Member (2016-2017), National Communication Associations (meet annually, and throughout year recruit, deliberate and determine candidates for committees across the association).

    Past Chair (2016), Chair (2015), Vice-Chair & Program Planner (2014), Vice-Chair Elect & Preconference Program Planner (2013) Ethnography Division, National Communication Association.

    Chair (2014), Vice-Chair (2013), Member (2012), Doctoral Education Committee, National Communication Association, 2012-2014.

    Program Planner (2014 & 2015). The Conference on Ontological Inquiry. University of California Los Angeles, March, 2015. Contact: Tony Zampella.

    Program Planner (2014 & 2015) and Chair (2016); Organizational Communication Application Domain. The Conference on Organizational Communication Traditions, Transitions, and Transformation. Austin, Texas. http://www.commstudies.txstate.edu/organizational-conference.html

    Chair & Program Planner (2006-2007) and Vice-Chair (2005-2006), Organizational Communication Interest Group, WSCA.

    Program Planner / Scholarship Chair, The 2nd Annual Nuevo Dia Southwest Organizational Communication Conference, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ; January, 2005.

    Co-Secretary & Executive Committee, Organizational Commun. Division, NCA, 2003-2005.

    Member/Referee, Ethnography Division Awards Committee, NCA, 2005.

    Member/Referee, Organizational Communication Division Awards Committee, NCA, 2002.

    Member, Student Affairs Committee, ICA, 2001-2003.

    Secretary, Organizational Communication Division, WSCA, 2002-2003.

    Member, Board of Directors, International Communication Association, 1999-2001.

    Co-chair, Student Affairs Committee, International Communication Association, 1999-2001.

    Co-chair, Membership Committee, Organizational Communication Division, ICA, 2001.