David Orr Belcher College of Fine and Performing Arts
School of Music
Jeananne Nichols is the Carol Grotnes Belk Distinguished Professor of Music Education at Western Carolina University where she serves as the music education program coordinator. Prior to her appointment at WCU, Dr. Nichols was Associate Professor of Music Education at the University Illinois from 2011 - 2022 and Associate Professor of Music and Director of Instrumental Studies at Olivet College from 2004 -2011. A school music educator for many years, Dr. Nichols taught middle and high school band in the Tattnall County schools in Georgia and the Roane County schools in Tennessee. In 1994, she founded the Knoxville Youth Christian Concert Bands, a pioneering effort to provide instrumental music education to home schooled students in the East Tennessee region.
Dr. Nichols teaches courses in music curriculum and methods at Western Carolina University and advises doctoral research projects in music education for Boston University.
Drawing upon narrative inquiry and other qualitative research designs, Dr. Nichols’ research highlights the lived experiences of persons whose voices may otherwise be muted in the prevailing discourses of music and music education. Her specific projects include participatory music experiences with incarcerated youth, the United States Air Force WAF Band, and the experiences of LGBTQ students in school music. Dr. Nichols’ work has been published in the Journal of Research in Music Education, The Bulletin of the Council for Research in Music Education, Research Studies in Music Education, The Music Educator’s Journal, The Mountain Lake Reader, and The International Journal of Education and the Arts. She is a member of the Research Studies in Music Education editorial board and has served as guest editor for two issues of the Bulletin for the Council of Research in Music Education. She has presented her research throughout the United States and internationally in Canada, China, France, Greece, Norway, and the United Kingdom.