Ineffective Uncertainty Alleviation in the Wake of the October 2008 Shooting on the University of Central Arkansas Campus
Tonya Oaks Smith
Henderson State University
February 8, 2011
UALR Bowen School Research Paper No. 11-04
In 2007, 46 murders were committed on college campuses in the United States. While that number is astounding, it doesn’t include the myriad other crimes – as well as natural disasters – classified as campus crises. Inherent in each crisis is a level of uncertainty for stakeholders. In 2008, two of these reported campus murders happened here in central Arkansas. On October 26, 2008, two students died as a result of a shooting on the University of Central Arkansas campus. As campus leaders scrambled to alleviate uncertainty surrounding the incident, their communication efforts came under fire from stakeholders. In this paper, I argue that University of Central Arkansas (UCA) communicators did not effectively manage uncertainty following the October 26, 2008, campus shooting.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 15
Keywords: campus, shooting, education, uncertainty reduction, crisis communication
Date posted: February 9, 2011 ; Last revised: February 14, 2011
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