Adam David Roth

  • Assistant to the Dean for Strategic Initiatives, College of Arts and Sciences, Professor, Harrington School
  • Communication Studies
  • Phone: 401.874.9526
  • Email:
  • Office Location: Davis Hall, Rm 101

Adam David Roth Curriculum Vitae


Adam graduated from the University of Pittsburgh’s business dual-major program with a bachelor’s in Communication and Rhetoric and Business Administration. He pursued his graduate studies at the University of Iowa, where he earned his M.A. and Ph.D. in Communication Studies and Rhetoric and a graduate certificate in interdisciplinary inquiry. In 2007, Adam was appointed as an assistant professor and basic course director in the Department of Communication Studies at the University of Rhode Island. He was promoted to associate professor in 2013. In 2014, Adam was appointed interim director of the Harrington School of Communication and Media. In 2017, he was selected to become associate dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and permanent director of the Harrington School. Currently, Adam is serving as assistant to the dean for strategic initiatives in the College of Arts and Sciences.

As a teacher, Adam has delivered a wide range of undergraduate classes, from public speaking, communication fundamentals, and organizational communication skills, to rhetorical theory, advanced rhetorical theory, and the ethics of persuasion, as well as graduate seminars on the rhetoric of science and the history of medicine. His teaching has earned him several prestigious honors, including the Douglas Ehninger Award for Teaching Excellence and The University of Iowa Outstanding Teaching Award.

Adam’s passion for teaching is motivated, in large part, by his active research agenda. His work investigates the central role that rhetoric and persuasion play in the development of Western medicine—from the rise of the Hippocratics in ancient Greece to the turf wars fought among various sects of healers in 19th-century United States medical history. His more recent examinations focus on the medicalization of a wide variety of social, cultural, economic, and political phenomena. Adam’s work is published in peer-reviewed journals and academic books, and is frequently presented at national and international conferences that are devoted to the study of rhetoric, communication, philosophy, and higher education. Adam has been invited to present his research in Greece, Cyprus, Russia, and China, and his work has been translated into Russian and Greek.

Adam is also an experienced, principled, and collaborative academic leader with a strong entrepreneurial spirit and vision and an unwavering commitment to student success. He has extensive experience in strategic planning, curriculum innovation, fundraising, budgeting, marketing, recruitment, enrollment management, and alumni, industry, and community engagement. A graduate of Harvard University’s Management Development Program, Adam is focused on a philosophy of total quality management that helps academic units achieve excellence and transition from good to great.


  • Professional Certificate, Management Development Program for Higher Education Leadership, Harvard University, Graduate School of Education, 2018
  • Ph.D., Communication Studies, The University of Iowa, 2008
  • Graduate Certificate, Interdisciplinary Project on the Rhetoric of Inquiry (POROI), The University of Iowa, 2005
  • M.A., Communication Studies, The University of Iowa, 2002
  • B.A., Communication and Rhetoric and Business Administration, University of Pittsburgh, 2001

Selected Publications

Loberti, A. M. & Roth, A. D. (2018). Embracing a new paradigm for higher education. Journal of Philosophy and History of Education, 68.

Roth, A. D. (2018). The therapeutic function of language in ancient rhetoric and philosophy. In K. Boudouris (Ed.) Greek moral and political philosophy. Paper presented at the World Congress of Philosophy, Athens, Greece, July, 2016.

Abendschein, B., Giorgio, G., Roth, A. D., & Whalen, J. (2018). Asking big questions in the basic course. Basic Communication Course Annual (BCCA), 30, 61–75.

Roth, A. D. (2017). Embodied discourse: Revisiting Plato’s stance on the connection(s) between rhetoric and medicine. Akropolis: Journal of Hellenic Studies 1, 55–71.

Karno, V. & Roth, A. D. (2017). LIS education in an interdisciplinary frame: Integrating digital media into the ethics of digital personhood. DESIDOC Journal of Library and Information Technology, 37(1), 38–41. doi:10.14429/djlit.37.1.10861.

Roth, A. D. & Zhang, H. (2016). A dialogue on traditional medicine: East meets west. China Media Research, 12(4), 85–93.

Roth, A. D. (2015). Plato’s educational foundations and the future of college teaching. Journal of Philosophy and History of Education, 65(1), 1–14. [Lead essay]

Roth, A. D. (2013). Plato on the similarities between rhetoric and medicine. Plato Collection: Supplement to the Bulletin of the Russian Christian Academy for the Humanities, 14(1), 436–452. [Рот, Адам Д. Риторика во плоти: Платон о подобии между медициной и риторикой. Приложение к Вестнику Русской христианской гуманитарной академии] (translated and published in Russian).

Roth, A. D. (2012). Transformative teaching; from classroom lectern to internet-based learning platforms. In K. M. Torrens & J. A. Amador (Eds.), Taking your course online: An interdisciplinary journey (pp. 35–52). Charlotte, NC: Information Age Publishing.

Roth, A. D. (2011). Rhetoric and faith in the Hippocratic philosophy of medicine. In W. H. Krieger (Ed.), Science at the frontiers: Perspectives on the history and philosophy of science (pp. 3–16). Plymouth, UK: Lexington Books. [Lead essay]

Roth, A. D. (2011). Rhetorical technology and the Hippocratic art and philosophy of medicine. In K. Boudouris (Ed.) Philosophy, art, and technology, studies in Greek philosophy series (pp. 345–356). Athens, Greece: University of Athens Ionia Verlag Press.

Roth, A. D. (2010). Plato’s written conception of philosophy and education. Journal of Philosophy and History of Education, 60(1), 57–61.

Roth, A. D. (2009). Following Plato’s advice: Pedagogy and technology for the Facebook generation. Journal of Philosophy and History of Education, 59(1), 125–128.

Roth, A. D. (2008). Philosophy, rhetoric, and medicine in ancient Greece and today. In M. Adam (Ed.) Philosophy and the issues of our age. Studies in Greek philosophy series (pp. 207–221). Athens, Greece: University of Athens Ionia Verlag Press.

Roth, A. D. (2003). Kairos and human agency. In K. Boudouris (Ed.) Polis and cosmopolis: Problems of a global era vol. II (pp. 145–152). Athens, Greece: University of Athens Ionia Verlag Press.