Bu Zhong


Bu Zhong

Associate Professor

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  • Social Media
  • ICT4D
  • Information Technology and Psychology
  • Social Networks/Networking
  • Health Communication
  • Decision Making


  • Ph.D.:  University of Maryland, College Park, MD
  • M.A.:   University of Missouri, Columbia, MO



Dr. Zhong is a tenured associate professor of journalism in the Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications, Pennsylvania State University. He is also an affiliated professor at Center for Advanced Data Assimilation and Predictability Techniques (ADAPT), Media Effects Research Lab, ICT4D Consortium, Science Communication Program, and the John Curley Center for Sports Journalism. Currently, he is Senior Editor of Computers in Human Behavior and one of the five members at the ICA-Affiliated Journal Evaluation Committee.

His research applies decision-making theories to studying how information processing may affect judgment and decision making. His recent focus is on how patients and scientists use and share information on social media may affect cognition and behavior change. His research addresses human interaction with the usage of ICT applications. Special attention has been paid to research projects with practical implications, such as how health information may function as health interventions, leading to symptom control and improved well-being. 

His research has been published in Journal of Communication, Journalism and Mass Communication Quarterly, Computers in Human Behavior, Computers and Electronics in Agriculture, Mass Communication and Society, Journalism and Mass Communication Educator, Newspaper Research Journal, American Behavioral Science, Asian Journal of Communication, and International Journal of Sports Communication.

At Penn State, he teaches journalism and social media analytics, news media ethics and TV reporting for undergraduates, and social media research and social media communication for graduate students. Before he joined the Penn State faculty, he worked for China Daily in Beijing, CNN Bureau in Washington D.C., and CNN/USA in Atlanta. He holds a Ph.D. degree from the Philip Merrill College of Journalism, University of Maryland and a Master's degree from Missouri School of Journalism, University of Missouri.


In the News


Selected Publications
  • Zhong, B., Wang, X. & Yang, F. (2019). More than an apple: Better working lunch enhances bus drivers’ well-being and work performance. International Journal of Occupational Safety and Ergonomics. doi: 10.1080/10803548.2019.1662980
  • Sun, T.*, & Zhong, B. (2019). A tale of four cities: A semantic analysis of news coverage of air pollution. Newspaper Research Journal, 1-16. doi:10.1177/0739532919873438 (*guided graduate student).
  • Zhong, B., & Yang, F. (2018). How we watch TV tomorrow: Viewers’ perception towards interactivity functions on smart TV. International Journal of Asian Business and Information Management, 9(4), 48-63. doi:10.4018/IJABIM.2018100104
  • Zheng, Y., Zhong, B.*, & Yang, F. (2018). When algorithms meet journalism: The user perception to automated news in a cross-cultural context. Computers in Human Behavior, 86, 266-275. doi:10.1016/j.chb.2018.04.046 (*corresponding author)
  • Lewis, N. P., Zhong, B.*, Yang, F., & Zhou, Y. (2018). How U.S. and Chinese journalists think about plagiarism. Asian Journal of Communication, 28(5), 490-507. doi:10.1080/01292986.2017.1416644 (*corresponding author)
  • Yang, F., Zhong, B., Kumar, A., Chow, S.-M., & Ouyang, A. (2018). Exchanging social support online: A longitudinal social network analysis of irritable bowel syndrome patients' interactions on a health forum. Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly, 95(4), 1033-1057. doi:10.1177/1077699017729815
  • Lewis, N., Zhong, B, Yang, F. & Zhou, Y. (2017). How U.S. and Chinese journalists think about plagiarism. Asian Journal of Communication, 1-18. doi:10.1080/01292986.2017.1416644
  • Chow, S.-M., Kumar, A., Ouyang, A., Zhong, B., Lee, J., & Inverso, N. (2017). What can physicians learn from social forums: Insights from an online self help and support group. Proceedings of IEEE 7th International Conference on Computational Advances in Bio and Medical Sciences (ICCABS).
  • Zhong, B., Yang, F., & Chen, Y.-L. (2015). Information empowers vegetable supply chain: A study of information needs and sharing strategies among farmers and vendors. Computers and Electronics in Agriculture, 117, 81-90. doi:10.1016/j.compag.2015.07.009
  • Hanley, K., Howard, M. C., Zhong, B., Perez, C., Lee, E., Dawson-Andoh, N., & Soto, J. A. (2015). The communication anxiety regulation scale: Development and initial validation. Communication Quarterly, 63(1), 23-43. doi: 10.1080/01463373.2014.965836
  • Zhong, B., & Appelman, A.J. (2014). How college students read and write on the web: The role of ICT use in processing online information. Computers in Human Behavior, 38, 201-207. DOI: 10.1016/j.chb.2014.05.037
  • Zhong, B. (2013). From smartphones to iPad: Power users’ disposition toward mobile media technology. Computers in Human Behavior, 29(4), 1742-1748. doi: 10.1016/j.chb.2013.02.016
  • Lewis, N. P., & Zhong, B. (2013). The root of journalistic plagiarism: Contested attribution beliefs. Journalism and Mass Communication Quarterly, 90(1), 148-166. doi: 10.1177/10776990124687
  • Zhong, B., Hardin, M., & Sun, T. (2011). Less effortful thinking leads to more social networking? The associations between the use of social network sites and personality traits. Computers in Human Behavior, 27(3), 1265-1271. doi: 10.1016/j.chb.2011.01.008
  • Zhong, B. & Newhagen, J. E. (2009). How journalists think while they write: A transcultural model of news decision-making. Journal of Communication, 59(3), 584-605. doi: 10.1111/j.1460-2466.2009.01439.x

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Bu Zhong
7 Carnegie Building
University Park, PA 16802