Christina Zarcadoolas, PhD

Christina Zarcadoolas, PhD

Christina Zarcadoolas is a sociolinguist and internationally recognized expert in health literacy and public understanding of health and science. She focuses on analyzing and closing the gaps between expert & lay knowledge and understanding, paying particular attention to how people make meaning out of complex things. The New England Journal of Medicine called her critically acclaimed book, Advancing Health Literacy: A Framework for Understanding and Action, “required reading” for public health communication professionals.

Primary Areas of Interest:

Public understanding of health & science

Technology and communication

Linguistic anthropology of social media

Chris has over 40 years of rewarding academic work in with highly applied contexts. Among her academic positions she served most recently as the primary linguist in the Anthropology Dept. of Hunter College.   Prior to that she was a Professor at City University of New York (CUNY) School of Public Health; spent five years on the faculty at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York and a long tenure at Brown University’s Center for Environmental Studies.

Dr. Zarcadoolas is the Founder and Director of the New York Roundtable on Public Health Literacy. In 2015 she launched healthliteracylab.com – an ever-expanding free library of communication and design lessons and tips for health and safety communicators. The lessons are backed up by sound theory and practice from the fields of sociolinguistics & communication, social psychology, cognition and human factors.

NBC Channel 4 Interview

Christina’s Interview on NBC Channel 4 about the Swine Flue, May 11, 2009