About Us

Location & Facilities

Murphy Hall

Murphy Hall is solely devoted to the teaching and research of journalism, mass communication and strategic communication. 

Murphy has more than 27,000 square feet on five floors that include:

  • four multimedia classrooms
  • a 150-seat multimedia auditorium
  • the Digital Media Studios, with capability for video editing, digital and analog audio, and labs for imaging, graphics and communication design
  • the Digital Information Resource Center (DIRC)/Sevareid Library
  • a multimedia Conference Center for distance education, short courses and professional development workshops
  • a focus group facility for advertising and public relations design and audience and media research
  • offices for student organizations
  • Silha Center for the Study of Media Ethics & Law

View map of Murphy Hall

Murphy Hall and sky

Digital Media Studios (DMS)

Due to COVID-19, the DMS is open for very limited service. Please see our Sunrise Plan for updated information. 

A significant feature of Murphy Hall is the convergence of graphics, news writing, and broadcast labs in a single space, the Digital Media Studios (DMS), located on the lower level of Murphy Hall.

For more information about Digital Media Studios scheduling, equipment, and policies, visit the DMS site

The DMS features:

  • three 20-workstation teaching area
  • internet and networking connectivity
  • ceiling-mounted projectors for displaying computer or video output
  • a cart-mounted computer workstation for instructor use
  • a broadcast production facility, capable of functioning independently, that also integrates with the university’s television and theater facilities in the Rarig Center

Hubbard School students not enrolled in courses with a lab component do not have access to computers in the lab but may use computers in the Sevareid Library which are similarly equipped and configured. Only students enrolled in courses requiring photographic and video equipment may use such equipment. Visit Campus Computer Labs for information about other University of Minnesota OIT computer labs.

Regular Hours

Hours are limited during Fall 2020. 

Digital Information Resource Center/Sevareid Library

Due to COVID-19, the library is closed for Fall 2020.

The Digital Information Resource Center (DIRC)/Sevareid Library is adjacent to the Digital Media Studios on the lower level of Murphy Hall. The DIRC/Sevareid Library is designed to be a high-tech information center with resources needed for instruction and research. In addition to housing the collection of the Sevareid Library, the DIRC is equipped with both traditional and digital resources for integration into classes and use by students.

The DIRC/Sevareid Library has:

  • eight networked and interconnected Mac workstations
  • two teaming rooms with digital editing capability
  • printer with photocopying and scanning capabilities (b/w or color, letter, legal or tabloid size paper)

Library Hours

During Fall and Spring Semesters:
Closed Fall 2020

During May and Summer Terms (hours may vary)
Closed Fall 2020

Note: The library is closed during official University holidays. Hours are subject to change.

Contact Information

DIRC/Sevareid Library 
Hubbard School of Journalism & Mass Communication
111 Murphy Hall, 206 Church St SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455

Murphy Hall Conference Center

Due to COVID-19, the Conference Center is closed for Fall 2020. 

The Conference Center is the showpiece of Murphy Hall. It serves as an outreach resource for internal and external groups for conferences, workshops, and other activities.

The Conference Center features:

  • conference tables that accommodate seating for 32 people
  • built-in Internet connections
  • a rear-screen-projected computer
  • DVD, VCR, cable TV, HDTV and a document camera
  • audio and video conferencing with two remote-controlled cameras and a control room
  • desktop microphones for audience member participation

The Conference Center also has a reception area (the historic Heggen Room), catering kitchen, and registration desk with a plasma screen for electronic displays.

Communication Research Lab/Focus Group Room

The Hubbard School's reputation for rigorous and innovative research dates back to 1944 when the School created the nation's first quantitative research division. More than 50 years and a major building renovation later, the School's Communication Research Lab affirms our enduring commitment to distinguished scholarship.

The Communication Research Lab, located on Murphy Hall's third floor, contains a rich repository of resources for conducting graduate and post-graduate research. The newly renovated lab space is continually upgraded with equipment and software to spur new research and support a wide range of communication-related studies from focus groups and eye tracking studies to online surveys, reaction time experiments, educational game exploration, and much more. This facility is designed to support small-scale research with large-scale impact. The Hubbard School Research Division offers consultation on research design, sampling, data analysis, data interpretation, and publication. It operates the Subject Pool and is the school's liaison with the Human Subjects Committee. It oversees the Telethnography Program; its library of TV programs; and the DDB Needham Life Styles Survey data bases, two of the richest resources in the country for student and faculty research.

The lab suite includes 6 rooms (under renovation during Fall Semester of 2019):

  • A reception lounge stylishly furnished for conducting experiments in a naturalized setting and for greeting guests or checking-in participants
  • Three small testing rooms, each with a one-way observation window and two computer workstations equipped with the latest communication research software
  • Focus Group Room with 10-seat executive conference table, one-way observation window, and unobtrusive audio-visual recording and playback equipment
  • Observation and control room seats 12 behind a one-way observation window
  • Small catering kitchen with microwave, refrigerator, and supplies

Learn more about room scheduling and usage guidelines, and the eyetracker for research.

Room Scheduling and Usage Guidelines

The Communication Research Lab/Focus Group Room in 314 Murphy Hall is a jewel for supporting a wide-range of communication-related studies and data collection. This small, centrally located campus research facility offers an intimate setting and treasure of resources for graduate and faculty research.

Please note that the The HSJMC's Research Suite/Focus Group Room is undergoing extensive remodeling. The rooms will be unavailable Fall Semester of 2019. Thank you for your patience as we improve this important component of Murphy Hall.

Focus Group Research Suite
Priority of use is first to the Hubbard School graduate students and faculty doing research for thesis and doctoral dissertations, publication and grant-related studies and defenses.

Other University departments and/or individuals with Hubbard School faculty approval may use the facility for communication-related research – when available – at no cost (except for technical support requests).

Usage Guidelines

Users have access to the reserved rooms requested. Unused rooms are to remain locked. Users must not leave the room(s) unattended with students or study participants in it. If users must leave the room, the doors need to be locked. All users are liable for stolen, lost, or damaged equipment/furnishings during their reservation time.

To reserve any of the rooms in the Research Suite and according to intended usage, please fill out this form, or contact the following individuals:

Scott Dierks: 612-624-7502 or sdierks@umn.edu
Research Division, events, focus groups, student groups

Kassie Snyder: 612-625-4054 or snyderk@umn.edu 
Graduate-related activities, prelims and final exams

Eye Tracker and ClearView Software

The Communication Research Lab/Focus Group Room in 314 Murphy Hall supports a wide-range of communication-related studies and data collection. This small, centrally located campus research facility offers an intimate setting and treasure of resources for graduate and faculty research.

In one of the three testing rooms in the research lab, there is a Tobii Eye Tracker* machine set up in a double computer configuration. One computer is dedicated to running the eye tracking software and the second computer is dedicated to the analysis using ClearView software.

Researchers interested in using the eye tracker machine for detecting and collecting eye gaze data will need a tutorial on using the equipment with advance notice.

The ClearView analysis software combines the collection and analysis of eye gaze data with numerous other data sources including key strokes, external devices, video recordings, web browser activity, and more. ClearView also provides mechanisms to interface with other software.

*The Hubbard School acknowledges and thanks the Psychology department for loaning its eye tracker machine for graduate and faculty research in the Communication Research Lab.


Usability Services Lab

The Hubbard School is one of five stakeholders in the Usability Services Lab, housed in the Walter Library Digital Technology Center. The other stakeholders are:

  • Digital Technology Center, Institute of Technology
  • Department of Computer Science and Engineering, Institute of Technology
  • Department of Writing Studies, College of Liberal Arts
  • School of Kinesiology, College of Education and Human Development

As a stakeholder, the Hubbard School has access to state-of-the-art lab equipment, including sophisticated eye-tracking technology. The partnership provides all stakeholders with a full array of resources, technology and testing areas for conducting usability and media effectiveness research. As part of the arrangement, the Hubbard School makes the focus group room in Murphy Hall available to the other stakeholders upon request.

The School is one of the very few journalism and mass communication schools with this level of access to state-of-the-art usability and eye-tracking equipment. Graduate students have availed themselves of these resources as have faculty. The INMS, as part of its Digital Story Effects Lab project, used the facilities to conduct intensive research into new story forms and their impact on news audiences. The availability of the lab has made several grant proposals more feasible and attractive to potential funders.