Trond Jacobsen

Profile picture of Trond  Jacobsen
Director of Forensics and University Forum
Sr. Instructor I, Information Science
Clark Honors College
Phone: 541-600-0762
Office: 212 Chapman Hall
Research Interests: public argument, political communication, sociology of science, legal advocacy,
Office Hours: By appointment during Summer 2024


Winter 2024 Office Hours

Tuesday, 9:00am-11:00pm

Friday, 10:00am-12:00pm

By appointment

Zoom office:

212 Chapman Hall

ACADEMIC AREAS: Speech and Debate, Public Speaking, Scholarly Communication Networks, Scholarly Research, Political Communication, Legal Advocacy and Persuasion, Social Network Analysis, American Foreign Policy

Teaching Philosophy

My aim is to help prepare students to achieve their greatest potential as scholars and informed citizens. In my classes and in working with students in forensics, my aim is to help students form, analyze, and critique a range of types of argumentation and enhance their advocacy skills. My work in information science aims to help students become active and effective participants in the intellectual life of scholars.

Past Courses

HC231 Oral Advocacy and Argumentation

HC231 Public Speaking

HC301 Network Analysis

HC431 Play ball! A social history of America

HC477 Thesis prospectus

Oregon Forensics

Professor Jacobsen leads Oregon Forensics which includes the debate and mock trial. Oregon Forensics provides all Oregon students the opportunity to translate what they learn in the classroom into a variety of different contexts, and to carefully and deeply consider different points of view on a broad range of important social and political topics.

Dr. Jacobsen was a highly decorated debater during his undergraduate years at the University of Oregon. As a forensics educator, Jacobsen has led strong teams to national success at Cornell, University of Vermont, and University of Alaska - Anchorage. Since arriving at Oregon in 2013, his teams have consistently risen in national rankings, including a 2022 National Championship. Under his leadership the number of students participating in debate and mock trial has grown rapidly and several important new initiatives are now underway, including scholarships, an energized alumni network, and deepening partnerships with leaders and institutions on and off campus.

With regional colleagues, Dr. Jacobsen has taken a lead in developing a new format of college policy debate designed to better meet the needs of contemporary students, emphasizing education, community, and competition.

Academic Background

Ph.D., Information Science, University of Michigan - Ann Arbor, 2014
B.S., Sociology, University of Oregon, 2002

Research Interests & Current Projects

Trond Jacobsen's prior professional experiences in college forensics, political campaigns, and as a law librarian reveal an abiding interest in how scholarly knowledge is produced, disseminated, preserved, and used - particularly in argumentative or adversarial contexts. He studies these processes in specialized contexts such as legal proceedings, scholarly communications networks, laboratories, political campaigns, cultural heritage institutions, and debate competitions. His dissertation "The Identity of Evidence: Documentary Evidence in the Federal Acknowledgement Process" analyzes how petitioning tribes mobilize records, and how federal officials interpret those records as documentary evidence in an administrative proceeding used to determine whether the petitioners merit tribal status under federal law.

Selected Publications

For a complete publication list see Professor Jacobsen's Curriculum Vitae.


  •  2013, "Invoking Collective Memory: Mapping the Emergence of a Concept in Archival Studies" (Jacobsen T, Punzalan R, Hedstrom M), Archival Science, 13: 217-251.
  •  2012, "Reusing Scientific Data: How Earthquake Engineering Researchers Assess the Reusability of Colleagues’ Data" (Faniel I, Jacobsen T), Computer Supported Cooperative Work, 19(3-4): 355-375.

Wednesday, 10:00am-12:00pm

Friday, 10:00am-12:00pm

By appointment