Richard G. Johnson, PhD

Richard G. Johnson, PhD

Richard G. Johnson, PhD

Associate Professor
College of Arts and Sciences

Academic Appointments


  • Computer Science, Design and Journalism


  • Associate Professor


Dr. Rich Johnson, Ph.D., is a native of St. George, Utah. He has loved journalism since he used to steal his father's newspaper for the sports section and the comics.
Immediately after high school and while attending a local community college, Dr. Johnson began his journalism career by working as a part-time sports clerk at The Spectrum & Daily News, Gannett-owned community newspaper with a daily circulation of about 25,000.

Dr. Johnson attended Southern Utah in Cedar City, Utah, where he earned a B.A. in Communications with an emphasis in journalism. Following graduation, Dr. Johnson returned to The Spectrum and Daily News, working as a copy editor, a bureau chief and a sports reporter.

Dr. Johnson later worked for four years at Brigham Young University as an adviser for its student newspaper, The Daily Universe. At BYU, he mostly oversaw the student newspaper's website and multimedia production. Dr. Johnson also earned an M.A. in Mass Communications at BYU. Beginning in 2012, Dr. Johnson attended Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication. While a student at ASU, Dr. Johnson taught Cronkite School classes in online media and social media. His dissertation focused on journalists and interaction with followers on the social media site Twitter.

Since Fall 2014, Dr. Johnson has worked as an assistant professor at Creighton University in the Department of Journalism, Media, and Computing. He has taught courses in media research, newswriting, and sportswriting at Creighton. He also is the adviser for the student newspaper, the Creightonian. He also works as a part-time copy editor in the sports department of the Omaha-World Herald.

His research interests include community and sports journalism, sports television network practices, and digital journalism.

Dr. Johnson and his wife, Kira, have four children. He is a fan of BYU and ASU football, the Vegas Golden Knights, the San Diego Padres and the Utah Jazz. He also loves nerd stuff, like Star Wars, Star Trek, Battlestar Galactica, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy and superhero movies. He is an avid fly fisherman and loves camping.

Publications and Presentations


  • , 13(2), 1-18
  • , 20(7), 1040-1056
  • , 12(2), 1-23
  • , 13(1), 99-121



Research and Scholarship

Research and Scholarship Interests

  • ·      Community storytelling
    ·      Journalistic identity
    ·      Narrative imagery and interactivity on social media posts
    ·      Sports journalism practices
    ·      Gender, racial, geographic and professional biases of sports network Instagram accounts
    ·      Sports reporters’ practices
    ·      Quantitative content analysis