Themed Learning Communities


Themed Learning Communities 

pre-enroll in a tlc today    why enroll in a tlc

fall 2015 tlcs    frequently asked questions

Typically, a TLC consists of two or three courses taken in conjunction in order to examine a common theme across disciplines like the humanities, natural sciences, and social sciences. Faculty members create assignments that require students to draw on concepts from the other TLC classes for an enhanced, integrative learning experience.

Students in Themed Learning Communities are able to build intellectual and social relationships with fellow TLC classmates through common interests and increased time together. 

TLCs give students the opportunity to engage deeply with a course theme, connect learning across courses in collaborative and active ways, develop relationships with peers/faculty, and ease the transition into college.

The Facts:

  • Courses are small, not exceeding more than 25 students and requiring co-enrollment in all courses linked in the TLC. 
  • Each course in the learning community reinforces a common theme through the integration of assignments, readings, and activities.
  • TLC instructors receive additional professional development opportunities.  They are also required to meet with one another on a regular basis to ensure theme integration across the curriculum.
  • How else do TLCs make an impact at NIU? Check out the 2013-2014 TLC Annual Report to learn the many ways that Themed Learning Communities are impacting the NIU campus year round!


  • Professional development opportunities
  • Program Support for field trips and other engaged learning activities
  • Opportunity to work with faculty from different fields

For more information, please contact: Marilyn Lorch at 815-753-8158 or

TLC Information 

TLC Pre-Enrollment Form (CLOSED)

*Return pre-enrollment form via email ( or mail (Office of Student Engagement, Altgeld 100, DeKalb IL 60115).

TLC Fall 2015 Informational Flyer

Fall 2015 Peer Leader Application (CLOSED)

Spring 2016 TLC Proposal Forms:

TLC Campus Partners:

TLC College Partners: