Franklyn (Lyn) Turbak
Associate Professor of Computer Science, Wellesley College

Franklyn (Lyn) Turbak
Franklyn (Lyn) Turbak is an Associate Professor in the Computer Science Department at Wellesley College, where he has been since 1995.

He received his bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degrees in Computer Science from MIT.

Lyn's passion is the study of programs and programming languages, which is at the heart of both his teaching and research. At Wellesley, his TinkerBlocks research group explores expressive visual languages in which programs are assembled by connecting blocks shaped like jigsaw puzzle pieces. Their current focus is improving MIT App Inventor, a blocks programming environment that allows those without previous programming experience to create apps for their Android devices. Lyn is co-author of the textbook Design Concepts in Programming Languages.

In his courses and programming environments, Lyn embraces constructionist learning principles that encourage people to view themselves as designers and inventors. Together with Robbie Berg in the Wellesley Physics Department, he developed the Robotic Design
Studio course for introducing liberal arts students to engineering. He has also taught Wellesley's Introduction to Engineering course, which serves as a bridge to engineering opportunities at Olin College and MIT.