Bo Feng

Feng Portrait

Position Title
Professor and Chair

365 Kerr Hall


  • Ph.D., Communication, Purdue University


Bo Feng has expertise in interpersonal, supportive and intercultural communication. Her scholarship focuses primarily on supportive communication, which includes a broad range of situations in which people interact with the intention of seeking or providing some form of aid or assistance to cope with a problematic situation. She has published research that examines supportive communication processes in face-to-face, personal relationship contexts as well as technologically mediated environments (e.g., online communities) and professional settings (e.g., physician-patient interactions during primary care visits). In addition to her appointment in the Department of Communication, she is a faculty member of the Center for Healthcare Policy and Research, the Institute for Social Sciences, the Feminist Research Institute at UC Davis, and the Center for Design in the Public Interest.

Research Focus

Professor Feng’s research program centers on supportive communication, which aims to: A) investigate the processes through which people conceptualize, seek, conduct and respond to various forms of support — such as comforting and advice — and how these processes are similar and different for people of different cultures, genders and across contexts; B) examine the features of more and less effective supportive behaviors; and C) develop more viable theoretical frameworks for researching and practicing supportive communication. Her research has been funded by multiple external sources, including the National Institutes of Health, the National Institute of Mental Health, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.



Bo Feng teaches CMN101 (Communication Theory), CMN123 (Intercultural Communication), CMN174 (Social Media), CMN201 (Theoretical Perspectives on Strategic Communication), CMN210 (Experimental Methods), CMN230 (Social Interaction Theory and Research), and CMN234 (Intercultural Communication).


  • Graduate Program Advising and Mentoring Award, 2022
  • Top Paper Award, Interpersonal Communication Division, International Communication Association, 2019, 2022
  • Community Building Award, 2017
  • Chancellor's Fellow, 2016-2021
  • Provost Fellowship for Diversity in Teaching, 2012–2013
  • Outstanding Dissertation Award, Interpersonal Communication Division, National Communication Association, 2008
  • Distinguished Publication Award, Association for Women in Psychology, 2005