My research interests have gradually evolved through my life experiences and opportunities. With my background in nursing and health promotion, I am able to bring a unique perspective to health communication research. My research focuses on the strategic communication of health information. I utilize foundational approaches to strategic communication to engage pressing issues in health communication. My research interests are at the intersection of communication theory, visual message features, and cancer risk communication. I also utilize physiological measures (e.g., eye-tracking, skin conductance, facial expression analysis) in my research.

Peer-reviewed Publications

  1. Pokharel, M., Lillie, H., Nagatsuka, K., Barbour, J. B., Ratcliff, C. L., & Jensen, J. D. (2023). Social media narratives can influence vaccine intentions: The impact of depicting regret and character death. Computers in Human Behavior.
  2. Pokharel, M., Jensen, J. D., Taylor-Burton, S., King, A. J., John, K. K., & Upshaw, S. (2023). Temporal frames, temporal focus, and behavioral expectations: The persuasive impact of near and distant threats. Social Science & Medicine.
  3. Pokharel, M., Jensen, J. D., John, K. K., Christy. K. R., Taylor-Burton, S. & Upshaw, S (2022). Visual tailoring and skin cancer prevention: Comparing personalized, stock, and non-ultraviolet images. Health Communication.
  4. Lillie, H., Ratcliff, C., Pokharel, M., & Jensen, J. D. (2022). Encouraging replotting to promote persuasion: How imagining alternative plotlines influences message processing and intentions. Communication Research.
  5. Upshaw, S., Jensen, J.D., Giorgi, E.A., Pokharel, M., Lillie, H.M. Adams, D.R., John, K.K., Wu, Y.P., & Grossman, D. (2022). Developing skin cancer education materials for darker skin populations: Crowdsourced design, message targeting, and acral lentiginous melanoma. Journal of Behavioral Medicine.
  6. Jensen, J. D., Parsons, B. G., Nagelhout, E. S., Pokharel, M., Christy, K. R., Ratcliff, C. L., Grossman, D., Haaland, B., & Wu, Y. P. (2022). Tailored visuals, implementation intentions, and sun safe behavior: A longitudinal message experiment. Health Psychology.
  7. Lillie, H., Pokharel, M., John, K. K., Christy, K. R., Upshaw, S., Giorgi, E. A., & Jensen, J. D. (2022). Does it matter if a story character lives or dies?: A message experiment comparing survivor and death narratives. Psychology & Health. 37(4), 419-439
  8. Lillie, H., Jensen, J. D., Pokharel, M., & Upshaw, S. J. (2021). Death narratives, negative emotion, and counterarguing: Testing fear, anger, and sadness as mechanisms of effect. Journal of Health Communication. 26(8), 586-595.
  9. Coe, K., Kuttner, P. J., Pokharel, M., Park-Ozee, D., & McKasy, M. (2020). The “discourse of derision” in news coverage of education: A mixed methods analysis of an emerging frame. American Journal of Education, 126(3), 423-445.
  10. Jensen, J. D., Pokharel, M., Carcioppolo, N., Upshaw, S., John, K. K., & Katz, R. (2020). Cancer information overload: Discriminant validity and relationship to sun safe behavior. Patient Education & Counseling, 103(2), 309-314.
  11. Pokharel, M., Elrick, A., Canary, H., Clayton, M., Sukovic, M., Champine, M., Hong, S. J., & Kaphingst, K. A. (2020). Health communication roles in Latino, Pacific Islander, and Caucasian families: A qualitative investigation. Journal of Genetic Counseling, 29(3), 399-409.
  12. Jensen, J. D., Pokharel, M., King, A. J., John, K. K., Wu, Y., & Grossman, D. (2020). Obstacles to skin self-examination: Are frontier adults inclined abstainers?. Psychology, Health & Medicine, 25(4), 470-479.
  13. Pokharel, M., Christy, K. R., Jensen, J. D., Giorgi, E., John, K. K., & Wu, Y. P. (2019). Do ultraviolet photos increase sun safe behavior expectations via fear? A randomized controlled trial in a sample of U.S. adults. Journal of Behavioral Medicine, 42(3), 401-422.
  14. Canary, H., Elrick, A., Pokharel, M., Clayton, M., & Kaphingst, K. A. (2019). Family health history tools as communication resources: Perspectives from Caucasian, Hispanic, and Pacific Islander families. Journal of Family Communication, 19(2), 126-143.
  15. Kaphingst, K. A., Peterson, E., Zhao, J., Gaysynsky, A., Elrick, A. H., Hong, S. J., Krakow, M., Pokharel, M., Ratcliff, C. L., Klein, W. M., Khoury, M. J., & Chou, W. S., (2019). Cancer communication research in the era of genomics and precision medicine: A scoping review. Genetics in Medicine, 21, 1691-1698.
  16. Jensen, J. D., John, K. K., Freeman, J., Carcioppolo, N., & Pokharel, M. (2019). Drink monitoring for self and others: Precollege drinkers and the Bad-Habit-Formation Hypothesis. Addiction Research & Theory, 27(3), 198-203.
  17. John, K. K., Jensen, J. D., King, A. J., Pokharel, M., & Grossman, D. (2018). Emerging applications of eye-tracking technology in dermatology. Journal of Dermatological Science, 91(2), 117-123.
  18. Christy, K. R., Jensen, J. D., Sarapin, S. H., Yale, R. N., Weaver, J., & Pokharel, M. (2017). Theorizing the impact of targeted narratives: Model admiration and narrative memorability. Journal of Health Communication, 10, 1–9.
  19. Jensen, J. D., Pokharel, M. Scherr, C. L., King, A. J., Brown, N., & Jones, C. (2017). Communicating uncertainty to the public: How amount and source of uncertainty impact fatalism, backlash, and overload. Risk Analysis, 37(1), 40-51. *2017 Best Paper in Risk Analysis
  20. Kaphingst K. A., Blanchard, M., Milam, L., Pokharel, M., Elrick, A., & Goodman, M. S. (2016). Relationships between health literacy and genomics-related knowledge, self-efficacy, perceived importance, and communication in a medically underserved population. Journal of Health Communication, 21(sup1), 58-68.
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