New Publications

Despite the importance of social networking sites on young adult alcohol use, few studies have examined Twitter as a conduit for sharing drinking behavior. However, this work generally uses random samples of tweets and thus cannot determine the extent to which Tweets correspond with self-reported drinking cognitions or behaviors. The primary aims of the present study were to (1) document basic patterns of alcohol-related Twitter activity in a subsample of young adult drinkers, and (2) examine whether willingness to drink, alcohol use, and negative consequences are associated with alcohol-related tweeting behavior.
Drug and Alcohol Dependence, 2018

Field Methods, 2018


More Publications

. #drunktwitter: Examining the relations between alcohol-related Twitter content and alcohol willingness and use among underage young adults. Drug and Alcohol Dependence, 2018.


. Data in the Wild: Promises and Pitfalls of Using Big Social Data for Demographic Research. Demography, 2018.

. Unbiased Sampling of Users from (Online) Activity Data. Field Methods, 2018.


. Research opportunities at the intersection of social media and survey data collection. Current Opinion in Psychology, Special Issue on Social Media & Applications to Health Behavior, 2016.


Recent & Upcoming Talks

Online Social Behavior During Crisis Events
Oct 29, 2018
Social Behavior Online During Crisis Events
Oct 26, 2018
Online Social Behavior During Crisis Events
Oct 22, 2018
Understanding Social Behavior During Crisis Events using Digital Traces
Aug 29, 2018
Look Who's Watching: Understanding the Audience of Police on Social Media
Mar 22, 2017

Dr. Spiro will attend the International Conference on Computational Social Science (IC2S2). At the conference she will present a poster on joint work with PhD student Li Zeng on “Gender Differences in Social Exercise in an Online Fitness Community”.


PhD student Li Zeng won the Best Paper Award of the 10th International Conference on Social Computing and Social Media for her paper “Stay Connected and Keep Motivated: Modeling Activity Level of Exercise in an Online Fitness Community”.


PhD student Li Zeng will present her work at the 2018 HCI International conference in Las Vegas this week. Her research paper, “Stay Connected and Keep Motivated: Modeling Activity Level of Exercise in an Online Fitness Community” explores personal health and wellness tracking.


Dr. Spiro and Dr. Starbird were awarded an NSF grant to study Collective Sensemaking Online. The research project will address empirical and conceptual questions about online rumoring, asking: (1) How do online rumors permute, branch, and otherwise evolve over the course of their lifetime? (2) How can theories of rumor spread in offline settings be extended to online interaction, and what factors (technological and behavioral) influence these dynamics, perhaps making online settings distinct environments for information flow?


Dr. Spiro was invited to attend the Current Challenges in Computing Conference on Computational Social Science last week. The conference, held in Napa, CA brings together experts to spur discussion about how to advance the state of the art by exploiting current and anticipated computing capability.




Information School: Informatics

  • INFO 499 Independent Study
  • INFO 495 Informatics Internship
  • INFO 300 Research Methods

Information School: Imformation Management

  • IMT 600 Independent Study
  • IMT 570 Analytic Methods for Information

Information School: Ph.D. Program

  • INSC 800 Doctoral Dissertation
  • INSC 600 Independent Study
  • INSC 575 Research Practicum
  • INSC 565 Teaching Practicum
  • INSC 576 Research Practicum
  • INSC 599 Independent Study

Information School: Interdisciplinary

  • INFX 573 Data Science I - Theoretical Foundations
  • INFX 576 Social Network Analysis

Department of Sociology

  • SOC 800 Doctoral Dissertation
  • SOC 495 Honors Senior Thesis in Sociology
  • SOC 600 Independent Study

Human Centered Design and Engineering

  • HCDE 596 Directed Research Group (co-taught with Dr. Kate Starbird)


Prospective Students: If you are interested in applying to the Ph.D. program at the Information School or Department of Sociology at the UW, I would be happy to talk with you before you apply. I am currently accepting new students in both programs.

Current Students: If you are a current student and would like to get involved in any of my research projects, please contact me to set up a time to chat.

Emily Porter

Information School, University of Washington

Leo Stewart

Information School, University of Washington

Peter Krafft

eScience Institute and Information School, University of Washington

Li Zeng

Information School, University of Washington

Nina Cesare

Digital Data Researcher, Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation

Shawn Walker

Assistant Professor of Social Technologies, School of Socal & Behavioral Sciences, Arizona State University

Logan Walls

Data Scientist, nuunum