Avery E. Holton
  • Undergraduate Journalism Sequence Coordinator, Communication
  • Student Media Advisor, Communication
  • Assistant Professor, Communication
  • Humanities Scholar, College Of Humanities
  • Vice-President's Clinical and Translational Scholar, Office Of Sr Vp Health Sci


  • Doctor of Philosophy, College of Communication, The University of Texas at Austin (William Powers Fellow)
  • Doctoral Certification, Disabilities Studies (Texas Center for Disabilities Studies), The University of Texas at Austin


Avery E. Holton is a Vice President's Clinical and Translational Research Scholar in the Department of Communication, where his research navigates the intersections of digital and social media, news and information, and constructs of health and identity. 

He con-currently serves as the Undergraduate Journalism Sequence Coordinator in the University of Utah's Department of Communication as well as the Student Media Advisor for the University. He also serves as an appointed Humanities Scholar, working with first year students as they transition from high school into Humanities courses at the university. 

He was named a 2018 National Humanities Center Fellow for his work in the area of genetic information and its translation into digital and social media. This work is part of a larger collaborative project run through the Utah Center for Excellence in ELSI Research (UCEER), which is supported by a $3.8 million grant from the National Institutes of Health and the National Human Genome Research Institute.

Dr. Holton's research has appeared in more than 60 journal articles and book chapters and has been presented as more than 80 studies at national and international conferences. His work has been published in Communication Theory, Mass Communication & Society, Journalism Studies, and Health Communication, among others, helping him earn Faculty Researcher of the Year in 2014 and the 2018 Rising Star in the Humanities Award.

Dr. Holton's courses focus on digital and social media, innovative technology, and Journalism. He previously collaborated on an H2 Honors Fellowship with Dr. Sean Lawson, helping construct and teach multiple courses in the University of Utah's Honor College. He has also served on the Academic Senate, the University Publishing Committee, the Honors College Assistant Dean search committee, multiple departmental committees, and helped to lead an overhaul of the Journalism curriculum in 2016.

He joined the Department of Communication faculty in 2013 after completing his doctoral dissertation as a William Powers Fellow in the College of Communication at the University of Texas Austin. He holds a Doctor of Philosophy for his work on social media and health communication as well as a Doctoral Certification for his work on disabilities studies.

A former journalist (Ft. Worth Star-Telegram) and communications specialist (Houston Astros organization), Dr. Holton collaborates across multiple disciplines, including sociology, nursing, health communication, computer science, mechanical engineering, philosophy, strategic communication, and honors programs. His teaching areas include digital and social media, social media and news media theory, and health and disabilities communication.

He enjoys trail running, hiking, snowboarding, and peak summiting. He makes his home in Salt Lake City with his wife, Katy Love, and their rescue dogs, Dezi and Roark.

You can view more of his work here and catch up with him on Twitter via @averyholton.