College Directory

Ted Spiker

Professor and Chair - Department of Journalism
Director of Pro Master's - Division of Graduate Studies

Office: 2070 Weimer Phone: 352-392-0500 Email: Twitter: @ProfSpiker


Ted Spiker, the chair of the department of journalism, came to the University of Florida in 2001, was awarded tenure in 2007, and promoted to full professor and chair in 2015. Spiker was named the University of Florida Teacher of the Year for 2016-17.

Spiker primarily teaches MMC 3703 Sports Media & Society (#SportsMediaUF) and JOU 3015 Principles of Journalism. He has taught about 20 different courses at UF, including Professional Creativity, Health and Science Writing, Humor Writing, Advanced Magazine Writing, and others.

In summer 2019, Spiker delivered commencement addresses for the UF bachelor’s/master’s ceremony, as well as the doctoral ceremony. He was also the keynote speaker for the UF new student convocation.

He has moderated public interviews with soccer star Abby Wambach, baseball star Alex Rodriguez, ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith, sportscaster Erin Andrews, celebrity chef Guy Fieri, musician Pitbull, author John Green, musician/producer Timbaland, Barstool Sports founder Dave Portnoy, actors Giancarlo Esposito, Josh Peck and Terry Crews, The Office’s Rainn Wilson, Brian Baumgartner, Oscar Nunez, and B.J. Novak, comedian John Mulaney, and UF football coaches Steve Spurrier and Dan Mullen.

Spiker’s book and magazine work is focused on health and fitness. His work has been published in The Washington PostWebMD; TIME.comEsquire.comOutsideO, The Oprah MagazineFortuneMen’s Health; Men’s FitnessWomen’s HealthRunner’s WorldAARP The MagazineReader’s DigestParentingPrevention; and many others. For more than five years, Spiker wrote the Big Guy Blog for (formerly he wrote The Marathon Virgin blog).

Spiker is author of DOWN SIZE (Hudson Street Press), a book about the science and soul of weight loss and dieting. He is co-author of more than 25 other books, including New York Times bestsellers, such as Food Can Fix It , the YOU: The Owner’s Manual series, AgeProofThis is Your Do-Over, and The Abs Diet series.

In 2012, Spiker was named one of the 100 most influential people in health and fitness by In 2013, he (barely!) completed the Florida Ironman under the 17-hour limit (2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bike, 26.2-mile run). He is also founder of the popular running group, the Sub-30 Club.

Before coming to UF, he was an articles editor, senior editor, and associate editor of Men’s Health. He was editor and assistant editor of Delaware Today magazine and has taught as an adjunct instructor at Lehigh University in Pennsylvania and at the University of Delaware. He earned the master of science degree in journalism from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism and a bachelor of arts, with a double major in communication and English-journalism, from the University of Delaware. He has won several teaching awards, and his paper on how magazine covers portrayed the events of September 11 was published in the Journal of Magazine and New Media Research. Spiker served as the 2009-10 and 2018-19 head of the Magazine Division for AEJMC.

Areas of Expertise

Creative Strategy, Feature Writing, Health Journalism/Media, Narrative Nonfiction Writing, Sports Media


M.S., Columbia University
B.A., University of Delaware


Office Hours

For appointments:


Professor Spiker’s creative activities focus on mainstream magazine writing, with an emphasis on health, fitness, and nutrition. He researches, reports, and writes stories for various national magazines, and also has worked and is working as a co-author on several health-related books.

He also has a strong interest in other forms of writing, including narrative, profiles, essays, humor, and many other genres, as well as research/teaching interests in magazine writing, magazine covers, the magazine industry, and magazine design.

Research Keywords

Magazines, Health, Journalism, Narrative journalism, Literary journalism, Magazine writing, Magazine covers

Research Areas

  • Literary Journalism


Syllabi from the current and three previous semesters: