Josh Montgomery he/him/his

Assistant Professor of Teacher Education
William B. Mark Professorship in Social Sciences

Josh Montgomery
Office:212 Wheeler Hall
Email:Send a message...


Earned and Honorary Degrees

BA History, Missouri State University
Post Bac Teacher Certification, Missouri Southern State University
MA, Curriculum and Instruction, University of Wyoming
Ph.D. Curriculum and Instruction, University of Wyoming


Though originally from Southern Missouri, I grew up on the Front Range of Colorado. I headed back to Missouri to earn a history degree from MSU, then pursued teacher certification before teaching 7th grade social studies for 7 years in Neosho, MO. I decided with my family to move west, and we found our way to Northern New Mexico where I taught in a small rural school with a view of high prairie, plateau, and snow-capped mountains. While there I taught social studies, 5-12. All of the social studies.

Several years later I was offered the opportunity to teach at the University of Wyoming while working toward a doctorate, which necessitated another move to Laramie Wyoming. At UW I instructed undergrad and post bac courses in educational methods and storytelling. In August 2022, we moved- family and all- one last time, to the shore of Lake Superior.

Why Northland?

In addition to enjoying the reaffirming natural beauty of the northwoods and the lake, Northland College offered me the opportunity to more authentically live my values as an educator. Our emphasis, shared across the campus community, of ecological connection making, environmental sustainability, inquiry, and justice enlivens my teaching and research.


I teach foundations of education, curriculum planning and assessment, diverse learners, social studies methods, and varied seminar and practica for students exploring local schools.

I find all of these courses meaningful: foundations is an opportunity to introduce new students to critical thinking habits; curriculum planning and assessment a chance to begin to explore why we make the educational choices we do; diverse learners is an opportunity to build new models of inclusive pedagogy; and social studies methods serves as the vital component of my plan to convert all teacher candidates into future social studies instructors.


I am currently working on several projects that have or, I hope will, lead to conference presentations or published works. Among these a sample:
Using poetry as a language of meaning making when exploring complicated issues in higher education.
A collaboration with former students- now teachers- on several projects around identity and economic challenges in western rural schools.
Working on a much larger exploration of what it means to prepare teachers in the Anthropocene.
Supporting a tradition of undergraduate research and presentations here among northland students.


Montgomery, J., Moran, P., & Swarts, G. (2022). “Using art to reveal democracy (hint: it’s a little punk rock)” International Journal on Social and Education Sciences (IJonSES)April, 2022

Montgomery, J. (2021). “Wake me from the fever dream- Early career teachers and meaning making amid strange days." Oregon Journal of the Social Studies, 2022

Montgomery, J. (2022). “Pinar’s Path: Autoethnography for Critical Change.”
Currere Exchange, June, 2022

Montgomery, J. (2021). “The school is the heart of a community. 'When you tear the heart out, the community dies.' A Story of Rural School Closure.” Proquest.

Popp, J., Montgomery, J., Hoard, J., Brock, C. (2021). “Transforming Social Studies Curriculums to Integrate a Social Justice Framework.” Social Studies Research and Practice

Brock, C.. Zygouris-Coe, V.I., Hayden, A., Montgomery, J., Kniss, K., Welsh, K. (2021). “Literacy in the Disciplines.” In (Eds.) Parsons, S.A. & Vaughn, M. Principles of Effective Literacy


Vigil, P., Perez, K., Montgomery, J. "Contemporary Joads. Educating in a Rural Boom Town. Accepted for presentation at AERA, 2023

Montgomery, J. “They tore the heart out of this community.” A forensic positioning approach to rural school closure.
Presented at Positioning Theory Conference, summer 2022

Perez, K. & Montgomery, J. “Mobilizing Teacher Identity: Autoethnography of an Other”
Presented, CUFA Conference, 2022

Montgomery, J. “Dark mountain looming. Teacher prep at the end.
It’s a bit, oh I don’t know, like whistling past the graveyard.”
Conference presentation, American Association for the Advancement of Curriculum
Studies (AAACS). April, 2022.

Montgomery, J. “Of May Flowers and White Lions: Entering the Complex and Contested Conversation.”
Presented, Currere Conference, 2021

Montgomery, J. Burge, S. Roumell, E. A. Dempsey, S. J. “The Body Poetic: Uncovering an Educational Panopticon.”
Presented, Social Science Education Consortium Conference, summer 2022

Montgomery, J. “Authentic Tasks in Social Studies: Teaching with Historical Road Signs”
Presented, Literacy Research Center and Clinic Fall Literacy Conference. 2021

Montgomery, J. “Lessons from a Pandemic. What Beginning Teachers Can Tell Us”
Presented, Colorado/Wyoming Association of Teacher Educators. 2021

Brock, C.; Welsh, K.; Hayden, A.; Montgomery, J.; Gunshenan, C.; Kniss, K. “Using Positioning Theory to Exploring Fifth Grade Students’ Developing Identities as Historians”
Presented, Literacy Research Association Annual Conference. 2020

Montgomery, J. “The Story of a Small Town on an Old Highway. School Closure and Rural Communities: What Happens After?”
Presented, CUFA Grad Forum

Welsh, K.; Spiker, A.; Reynolds, T., Montgomery, J.; Kniss, K ".Leveraging an Instructional Laboratory and Practicum for Enhancing Preservice Teacher Professional
Presented, AERA. 2020

Montgomery, J & Brock, C. "Place and Community-Based Education: Using “Place” to Deepen Student Learning and Engagement"
Presented, SMTC 50th Anniversary Speaker Series. 2020

Montgomery, J. “Utilizing Critical Autoethnography in Teacher Prep”
Presented, Colorado/Wyoming Association of Teacher Educators. 2019

Montgomery, J.“Pinar’s Path: Autoethnography for Critical Change”
Presented, CUFA Grad Forum. 2019

Montgomery, J., Swarts, G., & Moran, P. “A New Way to Teach Economics?”
Accepted, National Council for the Social Studies Conference 2019

Welsh, K.; Montgomery, J. “Wyoming Coaching Laboratory. Coaching the Coaches”
Presented, National Forum to Advance Rural Education Conference. 2018


NCUR Research Coordinator at Northland College
UW Academic Writing Fellow
Wallop Civic Engagement Program, K-12 Curriculum Project
Black 14 Social Justice Summer Institute
Educating for American Democracy Pedagogy Task Force
Wyoming Coaching Laboratory (WYCOLA)
Community and Civic Engagement Group, UW
UW Academic Writing Fellow
Black 14 Social Justice Summer Institute Planning Committee
Wallop Curriculum K-12 Development
AERA Proposal Reviewer, 2020
NCSS proposal Reviewer, 2019-2021
College of Education Technology Committee
CivXNow. icivics. Pedagogy Task Force Member.
CARF Committee
Social Justice Research Center Book Club
Discussion Group: ECTL GA Book Club
Discussion Group: "Using Writing and Communication Activities to Improve Learning.”
Student Appeals Committee
Colorado/Wyoming Association of Teacher Educators (CWATE)
American Educational Research Association (AERA)
National Association of Social Studies (NCSS)
College and University Faculty Assembly (CUFA)
GroWyoming (organization devoted to project-based gardens for school aged students)
Chair, Neosho Farmers Market
Phi Alpha Theta History Honors

Student Involvement

As an experiential and praxis centered educator, I seek to co-create environments where learning happens through action-oriented inquiry. We see our communities, we ask critical questions, we locate the disciplinary tools to answer those questions, and we use the resultant knowledge to work for positive change. As an educational department, we maintain relationships with surrounding schools and enable students to actively engage in classrooms, providing vital opportunities to learn and grow in the craft. Importantly, I learn continuously from my students, updating and altering my own practice to ensure I respond to changing educational needs.


I enjoy travel (or at least the memories of travel). Closer to our new home in Ashland, we are happy to explore the woods, the shoreline, and, when the snow begins to fall, the local ski hills. Eventually, surely, I will learn to sail.