Lesa Major

Associate Professor

Contact Information

  • Office:
    Franklin Hall Stack 2 M030F
  • Office Hours:
    Monday and Wednesday 2:45 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.
  • Email:

  • Research and Creative Interests

    Media Framing, Health Communication, Visual Communication,


    Lesa Hatley Major is an associate professor in the Media School.

    Her research focuses on framing analysis, health communication and public policy. Currently, she is studying public support for policy changes related to health issues. She has done research on news messages about AIDS for African Americans and creating public support for AIDS interventions. She has published in numerous peer-reviewed mass communication and health communication journals.

    She was a health reporter and news anchor for 8 years. She teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in mass communication theory, quantitative research methods, science reporting, and broadcast journalism.

    Major has a Ph.D. in mass communication and public affairs from Louisiana State University.

    Selected Publications:

    Coleman, R. Hatley Major, L. (2014). ­Ethical health communication: A content analysis of predominant frames and primes in public service announcements. Journal of Mass Media Ethics, 29(2).

    Gall Myrick, J., Hatley Major, L., Jankowski, S. (2014). The “Who” in mental health reporting: How national television news outlets use sources to tell stories about depression and anxiety. Electronic News, 8(1).

    Hatley Major, L. & Coleman, R. (2012). Complementing the sense-making approach with a survey to enhance communication of HIV/AIDS knowledge. Journal of HIV/AIDS & Social Services, 11(3), 248-270.

    Hatley Major, L. & Coleman, R. (February, 2012). Source credibility and evidence format: Examining the effectiveness of HIV/AIDS messages for young African Americans. Journal of Health Communication, 1-17.

    Hatley Major, L. (2011). Examining the role of framing and emotions in attribution of responsibility for health problems. Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly, 88(3), 502-522.

    Hatley Major, L. & Walker, K. (2010). Newspapers lack substantive reporting on sexual issues. Newspaper Research Journal, 31(4), 62-76.

    Holt, L. & Hatley Major, L. (2010). Frame and blame: An analysis of how national and local newspapers framed the Jena six controversy. Journalism and Mass Communication Quarterly, 87(3/4), 582-597.

    Hatley Major, L. (2009). Break it to me harshly: The effects of intersecting news frames on lung cancer and obesity coverage. Journal of Health Communication, 14(2), 174-188.

    Sullivan, J., Hatley Major, L., Goidel, R., & Kurpius, D. (2009). The role of an African American candidate on psychological engagement and political discussion in a local election. Politics & Policy, 37(2), 289-308.

    Hatley Major, L. & Renita Coleman (2008). The intersection of race and gender in election coverage: What happens when the candidates don't fit the stereotypes? Howard Journal of Communications, 19(4), 315-333.