Skip to main content

Tim Halkowski


Born and raised in Milwaukee, Timothy Halkowski benefited greatly from the University of Wisconsin System, earning a B.S. at UW-Madison, and an M.A. at UW-Milwaukee. He then earned his Ph.D. in Sociology and Applied Linguistics at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Following that, Tim was awarded a two-year NIMH post-doctoral research fellowship to do research on primary care doctor-patient communication at the University of Kentucky College of Medicine. After that, he taught medical students and residents at the UW School of Medicine for 13 years. Tim was recruited to the SUNY-Albany Communication department in 2005, but was drawn back to his home state and UWSP Division of Communication in 2008. He joined the School of Health Sciences and Welless in 2020.

Tim’s current research interests remain on communication in health care settings, with a focus on tele-medicine/tele-rehab communication, and provider/patient communication regarding uncertainty. He is also concluding a number of studies on doctor-patient communication regarding alcohol and tobacco use. 

Experience and Interests

Teaching Experience

  • Professor, UW-Stevens Point (2008-present)
  • Visiting Associate Professor, SUNY-Albany (2005-2008)
  • Associate Professor, University of Wisconsin Medical School (1992-2005)
  • N.I.M.H. Post-doctoral fellow, University of Kentucky Medical School (1990-1992)

Research Interests

  • Health Communication
  • Eliciting and employing the patient’s perspective
  • Conversation Analysis and Ethnomethodology


Professional Memberships

  • International Society for Conversation Analysis (2012-present)
  • American Association of Applied Linguistics (1992-present)
  • Association International for Applied Linguistics (1992-present)
  • National Communication Association (1992-present)
  • International Communication Association (1992-present)

Presentations and Publications


  • Halkowski, T.  2023. Approximation elicitors and accomplishing response-ability in amount questions.  Journal of Pragmatics, 203C (2023) pp. 130-143.
  • Halkowski, T.  2023.  Harvey Sacks and the mirandum of human interaction. Symbolic Interaction.
  • Halkowski, T.  2021.  ’Medical Discourse’ in Bloomsbury Handbook of Discourse Analysis (2nd edition), Ken Hyland, Brian Paltridge, & Lillian Wong (eds.).  London: Bloomsbury Publishing, Ltd.  
  • Halkowski, T. (2006) Realizing the Illness: Patients’ narratives of symptom discovery. In J. Heritage & D. Maynard (editors), Communication in Medical Care: Interaction between primary care physicians and patients. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.


  • Halkowski, T.  2024.  Metric shifts in doctor-patient discussions of alcohol & tobacco use. Accepted for presentation at the 8th International Meeting on Conversation Analysis and Clinical Encounters, University of Oxford, Oxford, UK, July 2024. 
  • Halkowski, T.  2019.  Practices for achieving and sustaining ‘countability’ in discussions of alcohol & tobacco use.  Presented at the International Institute for Ethnomethodology & Conversation Analysis, Mannheim, Germany, July 3, 2019. 
  • Halkowski, T.  2017. ‘Doing doubt and achieving a proper count.’ Presented at the International conference on ‘Intersubjectivity in Action,’ University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland. 2017.

Fun Facts

Last book you read?

A Time of Gifts: On Foot to Constantinople: From the Hook of Holland to the Middle Danube, by Patrick Leigh Fermor.

Favorite Quote?

‘All knowledge of any depth begins with amazement.’ – Joseph Pieper

One thing about your school that you are most proud of?

We are a collegial group that cares deeply about the success of our students.

What do you enjoy most about teaching?

I most enjoy those moments where we all are looking at something deeply, and are learning from each other.

A piece of advice for students in your school?

Bounce your ideas off of your fellow students. Talk to your professors. Keep a journal (this is a way of thinking things through with yourself).

Tim Halkowski
Professor - Health Sciences & Doctor of Physical Therapy

B143 Science Building


Ph.D. in Sociology and Conversation Analysis
University of California-Santa Barbara, 1990

M.A. in Sociology
UW-Milwaukee, 1986

B.S. in Sociology and Education
UW-Madison, 1984