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James D. Ivory

James D. Ivory, Professor

Jimmy stands in front of a brick building and tree.
James D. Ivory, Professor

Department of English
208 Shanks Hall
181 Turner Street NW
Blacksburg, VA 24061

Dr. Ivory's primary research interests deal with social and psychological dimensions of new media and communication technologies, particularly the content and effects of video games, virtual environments, and simulations. In particular, much of his research focuses on the content and effects of technological features of new entertainment media, such as video games. Dr. Ivory's research is primarily conducted in the VT G.A.M.E.R. Lab, part of the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences Digital Media Research Facility.

  • Social Dimensions of Digital Games
  • Media Portrayals of Character Demographics
  • Research Methods and Meta-Science
  • PhD, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • MA, University of Wyoming
  • BS, University of Wyoming
  • International Communication Association (Chair, Game Studies Division, 2013-2015)
  • Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (Head, Communication Technology Division, 2008-2009; Head, Graduate Student Interest Group, 2004-2005)
  • Society for the Improvement of Psychological Science (SIPS)
  • Society for Media Technology and Society (Division 46), American Psychological Association
  • Editorial board Memberships: Psychology of Popular Media, Journal of Media Psychology, Media Psychology, Journal of Broadcasting and Electronic Media, Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, Review of Communication Research, 2013-Present (Associate Editor), Journal of Communication Technology, 2018-Present.
  • Top Four Paper, Communication and Technology Division, International Communication Association, Washington, D.C., May 2019: Virtual reality check: Statistical power, reported results, and the validity of research on the psychology of virtual reality and immersive environments.
  • Top Four Paper, Applied Communication Division, National Communication Association, Las Vegas, Nevada, November, 2015: Organizations on Instagram: How post content and characteristics predict user responses.
  • Top Four Paper, Game Studies Division, International Communication Association, San Juan, Puerto Rico, May, 2015: Attachment issues: The ideological divide in research on violent digital games and aggression.
  • Second Place Faculty Paper, Entertainment Studies Interest Group, Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication, Denver, CO, August, 2010: Times change, but trailers don’t: Violent and sexual content in a decade of movie trailers.
  • Herbeck S. Dordick Dissertation Award for Communication Technology Research, Communication and Technology Division, International Communication Association, 2007 (awarded biennially at the time).
  • First Place, Promising Professor Award Competition (Graduate Student Division), Mass Communication and Society Division and Graduate Student Interest Group, Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication, 2005.
  • Outstanding Graduating Doctoral Student Award, School of Journalism and Mass Communication, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 2005.


Ivory, J. D. (2012). Virtual lives: A reference handbook (Contemporary World Issues Series). Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-CLIO.

Mansell, R., & Ang, P. W. (Eds.) (Ballon, P., Kerr, A., Ivory, J. D., Braman, S., Kleine, D., & Grimshaw, D. J., Associate Eds.) (2015). The International Encyclopedia of Digital Communication and Society. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley-Blackwell.

Journal Articles

  • Waddell, T. F., Moss, C., Holz, A., & Ivory, J.D. (2022). Character portrayals in digital games: A systematic review of more than three decades of existing research. Journal of Broadcasting and Electronic Media, 66, 647-673.
  • Ferguson, C. J., Kaye, L. K., Branley-Bell, D., Markey, P., Ivory, J. D., Klisanin, D., Elson, M., Smyth, M., Hogg, J. L., McDonnell, D., Nichols, D., Siddiqui, S., Gregerson, M., & Wilson, J. (2022). Like this meta analysis: Screen media and mental health. Professional Psychology: Research and Practice, 53(2),205-214.
  • Dienlin, T., Johannes, N., Bowman, N.D., Masur, P.K., Engesser, S., Kümpel, A.S., Lukito, J., Bier, L.M., Zhang, R., Johnson, B.K., Huskey, R., Schneider, F.M., Breuer, J., Parry, D.A., Vermeulen, I., Fisher, J.T., Banks, J., Weber, R., Ellis, D.A., Smits, T., Ivory, J.D., Trepte, S., McEwan, B., Rinke, E.M., Neubaum, G., Winter, S., Carpenter, C.J., Krämer, N., Utz, S., Unkel, J., Wang, X., Davidson, B.I., Kim, N., Won, A.S., Domahidi, E., Lewis, N.A., & de Vreese, C. (2021). An agenda for open science in communication. Journal of Communication, 71, 1-26.
  • IJzerman, H., Lewis, N.A., Przybylski, A.K., Weinstein, N., Ritchie, S.J., Vazire, S., Forcher, P.S., Morey, R.D., Ivory, J.D., & Anvari, F. (2020). Use caution when applying behavioural science to policy. Nature Human Behavior, 4, 1092–1094.
  • McLean, D., Waddell, T.F., & Ivory, J.D. (2020). Toxic Teammates or obscene opponents? Influences of cooperation and competition on hostility between teammates and opponents in an online game. Journal of Virtual Worlds Research, 13(1). Available:
  • Markey, P. M., Ivory, J. D., Slotter, E. B., Oliver, M. B., & Maglalang, O. (2020). He does not look like video games made him do it: Racial stereotypes and school shootings. Psychology of Popular Media Culture, 9(4), 493-498.
  • American Psychological Association Division 46 News Media, Public Education, and Public Policy Committee (Elson, M, Ferguson, C. J., Gregerson, M., Hogg, J. L., Ivory, J. D., Klisanin, D., Markey, P. M., Nichols, D., Siddiqui, S., & Wilson, J.). (2019). Do policy statements on media effects faithfully represent the science? Advances in Method and Practices in Psychological Science, 2, 12-25.
  • Waddell, T. F., Bailey, E., Weber, M., Ivory, J. D., & Downs, E. (2019). When media violence awakens our better nature: The effect of unpleasant violence on reactivity toward and enjoyment of media violence. Journal of Broadcasting and Electronic Media, 63, 698-715.
  • Lanier, M., Waddell, T. F., Elson, M., Tamul, D. J., Ivory, J. D., & Przybylski, A. (2019).Virtual reality check: Statistical power, reported results, and the validity of research on the psychology of virtual Reality and immersive environments. Computers in Human Behavior, 100, 70-78.
  • Co-Principal Investigator (with principal investigator B. Knapp and co-principal investigators N. Polys, I. Bukvic, Y. Cao, & D. Webster), National Science Foundation Computing Research Infrastructure Program, 2013-2015: Living lab for asynchronous and synchronous investigation of virtual and real environments. $585,510. 
  • Faculty Investigator (with principal investigator D. Ridgwell and faculty investigators J. C. Dunmore, E. S. Geller, C. L. Smith, & D. Tatar & Assessment Coordinator/Investigator A. Laughlin), National Science Foundation Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) Program and United States Air Force Office of Scientific Research, 2012-2014: “Hands-on minds-on”: Multidisciplinary approaches to understanding and preventing societal violence. $365,448.
  • Co-Principal Investigator (with principal investigator D. Ridgwell and co-principal investigators E. S. Geller, L. Jayaram, K. McConnell, C. Smith, & D. Tatar), Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University Institute for Society, Culture, and Environment Summer Scholars in Residence Grant, 2011: The human dynamics of violence prevention. $18,000.

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