Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts



First Advisor

Dr. William Charland

Second Advisor

Dr. Christina Chin

Third Advisor

Cat Crotchett


Creativity, art, art education, creative process, creative thinking

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


This thesis describes a methodology for developing artistic creativity in seventh-grade students through the implementation of a curriculum that fosters authentic engagement with the creative process. In it I explore how student’s waning interest in the arts through middle school despite the value of creative expression for adolescents can be addressed. The research in this paper explores relevant aspects of artistic creativity as well as the psychological needs that must be met in order for students to successfully engage in a creative practice. The paper makes recommendations for how to foster common traits of creative people and proposes how behavior management may encourage a creative learning environment. Ultimately, I propose a curriculum that develops student’s expressive capabilities through direct instruction in meaning making strategies and engagement in authentic personally relevant themes.