Newswise — Barbara Irwin, PhD, is involved in a long-term research project studying Cultural Indicators of Daytime Serial Drama, examining the messages (content) of soap operas and how these messages relate to our society and our culture.

Iwin, professor of communication studies at Canisius College in Buffalo, NY, serves as Co-Director of Project Daytime, a comprehensive research endeavor focusing on the study and monitoring of the daytime television environment and the state of the US soap opera.

As a consultant to daytime television industry leaders, Dr. Irwin has been involved in television features, specials, and conferences on soap operas. Dr. Irwin specializes in the areas of broadcasting and media studies.

Other research interests include the "behind-the-scenes" development and creation of television programming, the impact of the mass media on today's society, the history of docudrama and reality-based programming, and the influence of Latin-American telenovelas on U.S. soap operas.

A best-selling author, Dr. Irwin has written two books about television's highest-rated soap opera, The Young and the Restless, both co-authored with Mary Cassata, PhD of the Communication Department at the University at Buffalo.

Frequently sought after by local and national media, Dr. Irwin's interviews have appeared, among other outlets, on the E! Entertainment Network, and in USA Today and the Los Angeles Times.