As a geographer, Katherine focuses on seeing the order in chaos; she is process-oriented and enjoys providing insights to tackle and shape sticky, wicked problems or incipient ideas. For her Ph.D. research, she designed a non-linear, four-dimensional model that illuminates the ability of small, seemingly dispersed groups, she calls Metageographic Communities, to wield both economic and political power effectively demonstrating the seemingly invisible power and influence of non-state actors. This culminated in an article published in the Annals of the American Association of Geographers in 2011. Katherine is also a member of Gamma Theta Upsilon, an International Honor Society for Geographers, and is a former GTU Buzzard Scholarship recipient for graduate students.
As a formally trained educator, Katherine practices a pedagogical approach that fosters experiential and transformative learning. All of her courses include experiential activities that help students immerse themselves in the material rather than memorizing detail for an exam. She has been actively involved with the AP Human Geography Program for 18 years and has served as Lead Team Leader at the annual AP Human Geography readings. She is a Fellow of the Center for Great Plains Studies, a member of Kappa Delta Pi, an International Honor Society for Educators, and in 2018 she was awarded the National Distinguished Teaching Award in Higher Education, presented by the National Council for Geographic Education.
Research and Current Projects
At the University of Nebraska, Katherine serves on the Executive Council of the Chancellor’s Environment, Sustainability, and Resilience Commission and co-chaired the Teaching and Learning Action Team, which has facilitated the development of multi-disciplinary programs and processes designed to infuse sustainability throughout the university’s curriculum in line with the University’s N/150 and 2025 Goals.
She is co-facilitator of UNL’s Sustainability Infusion Workshop designed to increase the number of courses across the UNL curriculum that are incorporating concepts of sustainability in line with the Chancellor’s Master Plan.
As an extension of her teaching philosophy, to improve the quality of the educational experience for students in large lecture courses, Katherine is currently doing research that will culminate in a book with the working title, Out of their Minds and into their Psyches: experiential and transformative learning in the large classroom.
GEOG 120 – Introduction to Economic Geography
GEOG 140 - Introduction to Human Geography
GEOG 181 – Quality of the Environment
GEOG 271 – Geography of the United States
Archer, J. Clark, Jill A. Archer, and Katherine Nashleanas 2020. Approaches to Reading the Cultural Landscape of Nebraska: Historical Markers, Literature, and Living History Reenactments. In Stanley Brunn (ed.), Handbook of the Changing World Language Map Springer.
Nashleanas, Katherine (ed.). 2014. Human Geography Reader. Toronto: Cognella Press.
Nashleanas, Katherine. 2011. Metageographic Communities: A Geographic Model of Demassified Societies. Annals of the Association of American Geographers 101(3): 625-649.
2020, In response to the challenges of COVID-19, Katherine was invited as one of four faculty members to present her model for teaching large classes when effective space in the classroom had been reduced. The Center for Transformative Teaching hosted the Designing Your Course Showcasing the CAS Flexible Course Models and they received several requests for her model. They invited her to provide materials that could be posted on their website.
Nashleanas, Katherine. 2019. The Good NEWS about Teams: How to create Workable Teams in a Large Survey Course. Fall Teaching and Learning Symposium (October). Innovation Campus, Lincoln, Nebraska.
Nashleanas, Katherine. 2018. Group Portfolios as a Gateway to Creativity, Collaboration, and Synergy in an Environment Course. National Council for Geographic Education/Canadian Association of Geographers/International Geographical Union. August 6-10, Quebec, Canada.
Nashleanas, Katherine. 2018. Helping Students Visualize a Good Composition: Critical Skill for the 21st Century Learner. Teaching and Learning Symposium (February). Innovation Campus, Lincoln, Nebraska.
Nashleanas, Katherine. 2017. Making Large Classes Feel Small. Teaching and Learning Symposium (October). Innovation Campus, Lincoln, Nebraska.
Nashleanas, Katherine. 2016. Using Student-Produced Videos to Make a Large Class More Engaging Innovation in Pedagogy and Technology Symposium (Spring) Innovation Campus, Lincoln, Nebraska.
Nashleanas, Katherine. 2006. Invisible Ethnics as Transnational Actors: A Metageographic Model. Association of American Geographers, Annual Meeting, Chicago, Illinois.
Nashleanas, Katherine. 2005. Contemporary Ethnic Groups as Metageographic Communities: A Multi-Scaled Model. Association of American Geographers, Annual Meeting, Denver, Colorado.
Nashleanas, Katherine. 2004. Metageographic Communities: Structuring the Non-Place Place. Association of American Geographers, Annual Meeting, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Nashleanas, Katherine. 2018. Can Sustainability be Taught Through Creativity in an Environment Class? Peer Review of Teaching: UNL and the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, Innovation Camps, Lincoln, Nebraska.
Nashleanas, Katherine. 2016. Music and the Geography of Place, how to promote experiential learning through cooperative learning strategies. Peer Review of Teaching: UNL and the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, Innovation Camps, Lincoln, Nebraska.
Nashleanas, Katherine. 2015. Active Student Engagement in Large Lecture Classes: Immersion. Poster Session. Peer Review of Teaching: UNL and the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (May), Innovation Campus, Lincoln Nebraska.
Nashleanas, Katherine. 2014. Large Class Interactivity & Critical Thinking. Poster Session. Peer Review of Teaching: UNL and the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (May), Innovation Campus, Lincoln, Nebraska.