Christians is the former director of the Institute of Communications Research and chair of the doctoral program in communications, a position he also held from 1987 to 2001. He has been a visiting scholar in philosophical ethics at Princeton University and in social ethics at the University of Chicago, and a PEW fellow in ethics at Oxford University. On the faculty at Illinois since 1974, Christians has won five teaching awards. His teaching interests are in the philosophy of technology, dialogic communication theory and media ethics. He serves on the editorial boards of a dozen academic journals, is the former editor of Critical Studies in Media Communication, and currently edits The Ellul Forum. He has lectured or given academic papers worldwide in countries that include Belgium, Norway, Russia, Finland, Taiwan, Germany, France, Italy, Netherlands, Switzerland, Belgium, England, Singapore, Korea, Scotland, Philippines, Slovenia, Canada, Brazil, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Spain and Sweden. He is listed in Who's Who in America, International Who's Who in Education and Outstanding Scholars of the 21st Century: Communication Ethics. The Lambda Pi Eta Honor Society of Duquesne University gave him its Ethics Scholar Award in 1999, and the Carl Couch Center for Social and Internet Research offers its Ethics Research Award annually in his name. In 2003 he won the AEJMC Presidential Award for distinguished service to journalism and mass communication education, and in 2004, AEJMC's Paul J. Deutschmann Award for Excellence in Research. He was the James A. Jaksa Ethics Scholar in Residence at the Eighth National Communication Ethics Conference in June 2004.