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April Trees, Ph.D.

Department of Communication

Associate Dean for Graduate Affairs
College of Arts and Sciences

Courses Taught

Family Communication; Conflict, Mediation, & Negotiation; Leadership and Teams; Interpersonal Communication (undergraduate and graduate); Graduate Studies in Communication; Communication Research Methods (undergraduate and graduate); Public Speaking


Ph.D., University of Washington, 1999
M.A., University of Washington, 1995

Research Interests

  • Social support
  • Family storytelling
  • Nonverbal communication
  • Facework

Publications and Media Placements

Koenig Kellas, J., & Trees, A. R. (in press). Family stories and storytelling: Windows into the family soul. In A. E. Vangelisti (Ed.), The Routledge Handbook of Family Communication (3rd Ed). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.

Wallace, C., Trees, A. R., Ohs, J. E., & Hinyard, L. (2021). Narrative medicine for health care providers: Improving practices for advance care planning. OMEGA: Journal of Death and Dying.

Trees, A. R., Ohs, J. E., & Murray, M. E. (2017). Family communication about end-of-life decisions and the enactment of the decision-maker role. Behavioral Sciences, 7(2), 36.

Trees, A. R., & Ohs, J. E. (2016).  Making sense of family communication about and at the end of life: Family communication around end-of-life planning and decision making. Journal of Health Law and Policy, 10.

Ohs, J. E., Trees, A. R., & Gibson, C. (2015).  Holding on and letting go: Making sense of end-of-life care decisions in families. Southern Journal of Communication, 80, 353-364.

Koenig Kellas, J., Willer, E.K., & Trees, A. R. (2013). Communicated perspective-taking during stories of marital stress: Spouses’ perceptions of one another’s perspective-taking behaviors. Southern Communication Journal, 78, 326-351.

Thorson, A. R., Rittenour, C. E., Koenig Kellas, J., & Trees, A. (2013). Quality interactions and family storytelling. Communication Reports, 26, 88-100.

Honors and Awards

  • Recipient of the 2016 Milton Dickens Award for Exemplary Empirical Research

  • Recipient of the 2010 Journal of Family Communication Article of the Year award