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Transformative Language Arts Concentration

Slider: BA in Individualized Studies

Transformative Language Arts Concentration

Transformative Language Arts (TLA) is the intentional use of the written and/or spoken word to empower individuals and communities to foster enduring meaning for themselves, a stronger sense of identity, courage for growth and change, and vision to seek and restore balance to individual lives, communities, and the Earth.


TLA draws upon creative writing, storytelling, drama and other forms of written and oral communication that contribute to putting together broken lives and fractured communities. TLA is a profoundly radical response to the isolation, violence, hopelessness, and despair of our culture. This concentration is also a way to celebrate, honor, memorialize, or find meaning and understanding in our lives as individual, and in our communities.


Students graduating with a TLA concentration will have completed all of the requirements of the MA in Individualized Studies Program and will successfully have accomplished the following:

  • Engaged in ongoing reflection and integration to further synthesize personal development, research, an individual TLA practice, and community-based TLA work;

  • Completed an identity essay, which also focuses on the student’s identity, roots, and goals as a transformative language artist;

  • Evolved an individual TLA practice (poetry, fiction, storytelling, drama and/or other forms of written or oral language) that deepens the student’s experience as a transformative language artist;

  • Developed theoretical groundwork in the interdisciplinary studies pertinent to the student’s specific area of study — particularly in fields such
    as creative writing/literature, psychology and counseling, TLA modalities, education and pedagogy, and social transformation — to gain mastery of the student’s particular TLA focus;

  • Undertaken a transformative, ethical, and engaged community-based practicum that deepens the student’s ongoing practice of TLA in service to their community;

  • Completed an integrated thesis project that demonstrates mastery in TLA and contributes to the emerging field of TLA.