Associate Professor and Chair
Michael J. Lansing was born and raised in the Twin Cities. A historian of the modern United States, his research focuses on the North American West, political history, environmental history, and gender history. He has received fellowships and awards for his work from the Newberry Library, the Western History Association, the Montana Historical Society, the Western Historical Quarterly, and the Utah State Historical Society. Michael is a co-author of The American West: A Concise History (Wiley-Blackwell, 2008) and his articles have appeared in the Western Historical Quarterly, Environmental History, the Journal of Historical Geography, the Utah Historical Quarterly, and Ethics, Place, and Environment. His current project is a book-length examination of the Nonpartisan League in the U.S. and Canada.
At Augsburg, he teaches introductory courses in U.S. and Latin American history, as well as upper-level courses on the North American West, U.S. environmental history, and public history. Firmly committed to interdisciplinary endeavors, he is a participating faculty member in the Women’s Studies and Environmental Studies programs. Michael also serves as the adviser to Augsburg’s chapter of the Phi Alpha Theta History Honor Society. Before arriving at Augsburg in 2005, he taught at Utah State University and the State University of New York at Buffalo, and served as visiting assistant editor at the Western Historical Quarterly.
As a proponent of participatory democratic work, Michael remains an active public historian. His many experiences include an oral history project with the Minnesota chapter of the Sierra Club, a congregational history, and contributing to the Minnesota Historical Society’s online MNopedia.
He is especially committed to improving history pedagogies in both K-12 and undergraduate venues. Michael spent two years on the staff of the National History Day in Minnesota program (1999-2001) and served as the academic lead on a Teaching American History grant serving teachers in northern Minnesota (2008-2011). Currently, Michael serves as Augsburg’s social studies content advisor for secondary education majors at the college. He is also collaborating with K-5 teachers in the Anoka-Hennepin (MN) School District in an ongoing program that expands the use of inquiry-based approaches in social studies classrooms. Selected to participate in the American Historical Association’s Tuning Project–a national effort to identify and frame common goals for post-secondary history education–he remains keen on exploring new ways of teaching and learning.
Michael is a member of the American Historical Association, the Organization of American Historians, the Western History Association, the American Society for Environmental History, the National Council on Public History, the Coalition for Western Women’s History, and the Minnesota Historical Society.
- A.B. College of William & Mary
- M.A. Utah State University
- Ph.D. University of Minnesota