headshot photo of Dr. Sophie Janicke-Bowles

Dr. Sophie Janicke-Bowles

Assistant Professor
School of Communication; Communication Studies
Expertise: Media Effects; Happiness; Positive Media Psychology; Social Media; Spirituality
Office Location: Becket Building 115
Office Hours: W/Th 1 – 4 pm
Phone: 714-516-5184
Scholarly Works:
Digital Commons
Florida State University, Ph.D.


Sophie H. Janicke-Bowles, Ph.D. is a positive media psychologist who investigates the role that new and traditional media play in promoting and affecting character development, self-transcendent emotions, prosocial behavior, and well-being (aka happiness). Her research and teaching focus is on positive psychology, media and new communication technologies, and media and spirituality. As a member of a research team from Florida State and Penn State Universities she was awarded a 3 year $1.9M grant from the John Templeton Foundation (2015-2018) to explore how people use and are impacted by media content that elicits self-transcendent emotions such as awe, elevation, gratitude and compassion. In her past research, Janicke examined how and why we enjoy media entertainment, with specific attention to the role morality plays in those processes. She received her Diploma (German equivalent to a Masters Degree) in clinical and media psychology from Eberhard-Karls University, Tuebingen, Germany in 2009 and a Ph.D. in mass communication from Florida State University in 2013.

Recent Creative, Scholarly Work and Publications

Oliver, MB., Raney, A.A., Bartsch, A., Janicke-Bowles, S.H., Appel, M., & Dale, K. (2021, in press). Model of Inspiring Media. In press at the Journal of Media Psychology Special issue on Theoretical Innovation and Consolidation.
Oliver, M.B., Raney, A.A., Slater, M., Hartmann, T., Bartsch, A., Appel, M., Schneider, F., Janicke, S.H., Kraemer, N., Das, E. (2018). Self-Transcendent Media Experiences: Taking Meaningful Media to a Higher Level. Journal of Communication, 68, 380-389. https://doi.org/10.1093/joc/jqx020
Ji, Q., & Janicke, S.H. (2018). Culture, Political Orientation, and Moral Foundations: A Comparison Between China and the U.S. China Media Research, 14(1), 62-75.
Raney, A. A., Janicke, S. H., Oliver, M. B., Dale, K. R., Jones, R. P., & Cox, D. (2018). Profiling the sources of and audiences for inspiring media content: A national survey. Mass Communication and Society, 21(3), 296-319. https://doi.org/10.1080/15205436.2017.1413195
Janicke, S.H. Rieger, D., Reinecke, L., & Connor III, W (2017). Watching Online Videos at Work: The Role of Positive and Meaningful Affect for Recovery Experiences and Well-Being at the Workplace. Mass Communication Society. 1-23. https://doi.org/10.1080/15205436.2017.1381264
Dale, K.R., Raney, A.A., Janicke, S.H., Sanders, M., Oliver, M.B. (2017). Youtube for good: A content analysis and examination of elicitors of self-transcendent media. Journal of Communication, 67(6), 897-919. Doi:10.1111/jcom.12333