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Irena Acic


  • BA in Journalism, Faculty of Political Sciences, University of Belgrade 2011
  • MA in Communication, Faculty of Political Sciences, University of Belgrade 2013
  • MA in Communication, University of California, Davis 2020


Irena graduated with a BA in Journalism from Faculty of Political Sciences, University of Belgrade. She obtained her MA in Communication from the same institution and an MA in Communication from University of California, Davis. Prior to becoming a graduate student at UC Davis, Irena spent 5 years working as a journalist in Serbia.

Research Focus

Her current research interests include media effects, body image and sexual minorities.

Selected Publications

Acic, I., & Taylor, L. D. (2022) Effects of self-objectification on viewers’ narrative engagement. Psychology of Popular Media. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1037/ppm0000418

Acic, I., Stevens, H. R., Yu, X., & Taylor, L. D. (2021) How gay men discuss their bodies online. Communication Research Reports 38:5, 325-335.

Stevens, H., Acic, I., & Rhea, S. (2021) Natural Language Processing Insight into LGBTQ+ Youth Mental Health During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Longitudinal Content Analysis of Anxiety-Provoking Topics and Trends in Emotion in LGBTeens Microcommunity Subreddit. JMIR Public Health and Surveillance, 7(8), doi:10.2196/29029

Stevens, H., Acic, I., & Taylor, L.D. (2021) Uncivil Reactions to Sexual Assault Online: Linguistic Features of News Reports Predict Discourse Incivility. Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking. Online publication. http://doi.org/10.1089/cyber.2021.0075

Taylor, L. D., & Acic. I. (2021) Sports Fans and Magical Thinking: How Supernatural Thinking Connects Fans to Teams. International Journal of Sport Communication. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1123/ijsc.2021-0046.

Taylor, L. D., & Acic, I. (2020) Magical Thinking and Fans of Fictional Texts. Psychology of Popular Media. Advance online publication. http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/ppm0000279

Taylor, L. D., & Acic, I. (2020) Eating Habits. The International Encyclopedia of Media Psychology. https://doi.org/10.1002/9781119011071.iemp0096


Teaching Assistant: Interpersonal Communication Competence (7 quarters), Introduction to Communication (3 quarters), Introduction to Mass Communication (2 quarters)

Associate Instructor: Interpersonal Communication Competence (2 quarters), Introduction to Mass Communication (1 quarter)



Women’s Resources and Research Center Graduate Summer Research Grant, June 2022

Stevens, H., & Acic, I. (2020) Examining Rape Culture in Online Forums: The Effect of Editorial Slant on Discourse Incivility – Mass Communication Division Top Student Paper Award at the NCA 106th Annual Convention, November 2020

Acic, I., Stevens, H., & Yu, X. (2020) How Gay Men Discuss Their Bodies Online: A Content Analysis – Mass Communication Division Top Student Paper Award at the 70th annual ICA conference, May 2020

ICA Mass Communication Division Travel Award, May 2020

CMN Small Grants, UC Davis Department of Communication, March 2020