Nathan J. Shipley

Personal Bio


In the Fall of 2017 I began my doctoral studies at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. I currently work alongside Dr. Carena van Riper in the department of Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences (Dr. van Riper's page) and Dr. William Stewart (Dr. Stewart's page)

I have a varied background that broadly fits under the umbrella of the Environmental Social Sciences. I received my B.S. in Park Management and Conservation from Kansas State University in 2015 where much of my coursework was dedicated to the biological sciences and environmental education. During my undergraduate degree, my interest in nature was refined into a passion for connecting people with the outdoors.

I then went on to receive my M.S. in Parks, Recreation, and Tourism Management from Clemson University in 2017 where my research was focused on human interactions with insects. While at Clemson, my research interests where quickly enveloped into psychological theory, of which now drives the core of my research program. 

My career goal is broadly romanticized around developing new ideas and theories that advance the field. I take a critical approach to the status quo and seek  new perspectives on traditionally held research methods and theories. 


Research Interests

My current research is primarily focused on understanding the functional psychological factors of human behavior within the context of the natural environment, recreation, leisure, and conservation.

My specific research interests are interwoven around five core pillars of inquiry.

  1. Explore the role of emotion in human behavior. EMOTION
  2. Examine how the context in which a behavior occurs interacts with psychological processes and moderates subsequent behavior. SITUATION
  3. Expand how psychological factors influence human behavior through implicit and explicit functions. UNCONCIOUS
  4. Elucidate theories of leisure. LEISURE
  5. Investigate and apply new methodologies to the field. METHODOLOGY


For more information, please check out my other links



Google Scholar



Orchid ID


Outside of the Lab


Beyond academia I am an avid outdoors-man and passionate birder. I enjoy spending time with my wife and dragging her around on my birding adventures.