Date of Award


Document Type

Open Access Master's Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Rhetoric, Theory and Culture (MS)

Administrative Home Department

Department of Humanities

Advisor 1

Sue Collins

Committee Member 1

Stefka Hristova

Committee Member 2

Victoria Bergvall


This thesis examines the frames used by three news organizations to cover the rescindment of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. The rescindment of DACA was a pivotal transition period open to new immigration policy, and frames used in the news coverage of DACA are important as frames influence public opinion and possible future immigration policy. This study uses corpus linguistic methods and Van Gorp’s inductive framing analysis to explore how a complex political decision like DACA rescindment is covered in condensed news stories on Twitter as well as in full-length news articles. The Executive Critique frame, which places blame on President Trump as the problem of DACA rescindment, is the most common frame of both full-length news articles and Tweeted news articles. The Public Resistance frame, showing opposition to DACA rescindment by members of the public, is used more often in Tweeted news articles than in full-length news articles likely because of the salient visuals accompanying Tweeted news stories. Because visuals play a role in framing, journalists should capitalize on the potential of visuals in Tweeted news stories and balance using Human Interest frames and political frames like the Executive Critique frame. Using visuals to show DACA as human issue that promotes common ground, rather than as a divisive political issue, could be more productive in advancing comprehensive immigration reform, which failed in the six-month window President Trump gave to phase-out the DACA program.