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College of Information and Communications

Faculty and Staff

Mary Anne Fitzpatrick, Ph.D.

Title: Educational Foundation Distinguished Professor
Interim Dean of the Faculty and Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs
Department: School of Journalism and Mass Communications
College of Information and Communications
Phone: 803-777-2808
Office: Office of the Executive Vice President
Osborne Administration Building
University of South Carolina
Columbia, SC 29208
Resources: Curriculum Vitae
Mary Anne Fitzpatrick

Mary Anne Fitzpatrick is on leave from the School of Journalism and Mass Communications during the 2023-2024 academic term  to serve as USC Dean of the Faculty and Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs in the Office of the Executive Vice President.


B.A., Political Science, Temple University
Ph.D., Communication, Temple University

Research and Scholarship

Professor Mary Anne Fitzpatrick has published seven books; three special issues of major journals and over 100 major peer reviewed articles and book chapters. A co-founder of the International Association for Relationship Research, she has been the Cambridge University Press editor for an influential series of books, Advances in Personal Relationships.  She has lectured extensively on her research in this country and abroad.  The quality, reach and impact of her scholarship is very broad. She has published in major peer reviewed journals and handbooks in communication, social psychology, clinical psychology, developmental psychology, health psychology, family sociology, as well as text and discourse studies. Her research has been funded by NIH, NSF, the Spencer Foundation, the Kellogg Foundation and the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation.

In addition to a number of prestigious awards for various books and articles, Fitzpatrick is a Fellow of four major learned societies (i.e., AAAS; ICA: NCA; IARR).  These honors are reserved for faculty scholars of exceptional ability who have achieved national and international distinction in their research careers. She is regularly contacted by faculty and graduate students around the world who request permission to utilize one of her paradigms and measurement techniques in their own research.   The candidate’s research has been referenced and discussed in most major interpersonal textbooks published in the past twenty years. Generations of students have benefitted from her insights on communication in social and personal relationships.


Fitzpatrick has taught a range of graduate and undergraduate courses in communication theory, interpersonal communication, persuasion, health communication and research methodology over the course of her career. Recently, she developed a new undergraduate course in Media and Youth  which takes a developmental approach to media effects.  She regularly teaches the doctoral seminar in  Teaching Mass Communication as well as the master’s level practicum in mass communication management.


Fitzpatrick is the Director of Graduate Studies for the school. She serves as the advisor for all incoming graduate students.  She is the Treasurer and member of the Executive Committee on the Board of the Girl Scouts of South Carolina from Mountains to Midlands.  Fitzpatrick has served the University of South Carolina in a variety of administrative roles: Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, Vice Provost for Special Academic Initiatives, Vice President of USC System; the Chancellor (interim) of USC Upstate following a career as a faculty member and an administrator at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She has been the President of the International Communication Association as well as the President of the Council of Colleges of Arts and Sciences.

Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.