CoLab Podcast

by Josh Luckens

From the Teaching and Learning Collaborative at the Wentworth Institute of Technology in Boston, Massachusetts, join host Josh Luckens as we "dive deep into the art and science of teaching and learning" at Wentworth and beyond. Stay curious with us!

Co-Lab Podcast Credits-

Host & Producer: Josh Luckens

Editor: Megan Hamilton Giebert

Music: Michael Kobrin, Pixabay

Podcast episodes

  • Season 1

  • Pedagogies of Hope and Solidarity with Dr. Kevin Gannon

    Pedagogies of Hope and Solidarity with Dr. Kevin Gannon

    Josh Luckens interviews Dr. Kevin Gannon, who shares how he finds spaces of possibility to question the status quo in higher education, working alongside his students to build a more just and sustainable future. He discusses ways to stop inequities from reproducing themselves in the classroom, how he has moved from focusing on the product to the process of learning, and why he leads with compassion as an educator, helping students discover their own unique pathways to meaningful and authentic learning.Dr. Gannon posits that the better we can answer the following questions, the better the teaching and learning experiences that we design will be:How do I give students permission to take risks and fall short, knowing that a “failure” isn’t the end of the process, but a necessary step towards learning and mastery?How will I get students connected with one another and myself in relationships built on mutual trust and shared purpose?How can I not take things personally, but instead lead with curiosity and meet my students where they actually are?How is everyone in this teaching and learning space acknowledging and meeting everyone else as fully and authentically human?How do I remain committed to a better future and act every day from that place?Dr. Kevin Gannon is the Director of the Center for the Advancement of Faculty Excellence and Professor of History at Queens University. He is a regular contributor to The Chronicle of Higher Education and is the author of the book Radical Hope: A Teaching Manifesto.Additional resources:Kevin Gannon's Book: Radical Hope: A Teaching Manifesto Kevin Gannon's Blog: The Tattooed Professor: History, Teaching, and Technology With A Custom Paint JobEditor: Sarah Walkowiak (August, 2023)

  • 7 Principles for Good Practice in Undergraduate Education

    7 Principles for Good Practice in Undergraduate Education

    The Teaching & Learning Collaborative’s Josh Luckens and Megan Hamilton Giebert are joined by Wentworth’s Dean of Students Jenn Kosses to discuss the “Seven Principles for Good Practice in Undergraduate Education,” a classic study by Arthur Chickering and Zelda Gamson. Our conversation explores how we bring these best practices to life at Wentworth and illuminates the many ways in which Chickering and Gamson's guiding principles can help us find our footing in a changing higher education landscape. The seven principles are: 1) Encourage contact between students and faculty 2) Develop reciprocity and cooperation among students 3) Encourage active learning 4) Give prompt feedback 5) Emphasize time on task 6) Communicate high expectations 7) Respect diverse talents and ways of learning Additional resources: Read more about these principles by checking out this guide from the University of Florida or this resource from the University of Tennessee. Episode Editor: Sarah Walkowiak Sound Engineer: Gabe Sytangco ‘23 (June, 2023)

  • Playful Pedagogy with Dr. Lisa Forbes and Dr. David Thomas

    Playful Pedagogy with Dr. Lisa Forbes and Dr. David Thomas

    Josh Luckens interviews Dr. Lisa Forbes and Dr. David Thomas, the co-founders of Professors at Play, an organization that invites professors to explore the transformative power of play in the higher education classroom. They are the co-editors of the Professors at Play PlayBook, an anthology of playful teaching techniques applicable across the disciplines, sourced from their network of nearly 1,000 professors from across the globe, and available as a free download. They discuss the complex ways that play creates relational safety in the classroom, how play can enliven content and spark more lasting learning, and why playful teaching brings them so much joy as professors. Dr. Lisa Forbes is a Professor of Counseling at the University of Colorado, Denver. Dr. David Thomas is an Architecture Professor at the University of Colorado, Denver, and the Executive Director of Online Programs at the University of Denver. Paraphrasing them:In the serious play of the course, students have to creatively figure out how to write new laws by applying real concepts in imaginary contexts, helping them to learn how to think like lawyers, rather than simply be imparted with information that lawyers should know...and genuinely enjoying the process of learning collaboratively.When we find joy in teaching, our passion is contagious. When we are genuinely curious and playful, when we model authenticity and vulnerability, when we allow ourselves to learn alongside our students in the play of teaching and learning, we not only transform our classrooms, we walk a path of redemption that touches the soul of our institutions.Editors: Sarah Walkowiak, Josh Luckens, Megan Hamilton Giebert, and LaToya Hinton(May, 2023)Additional resources:Professors at Play: Transforming Higher Education Though Play (website)Join the Professors at Play community's global listserv (website with link to join Google group)Professors at Play PlayBook: Real-world techniques from a more playful higher education classroom (book with free download)The Process of Play in Learning in Higher Education: A Phenomenological Study (article by Dr. Lisa Forbes)Playful Teaching Pyramid (infographic)

  • Reaching All Learners with Dr. Tom Tobin

    Reaching All Learners with Dr. Tom Tobin

    Josh Luckens interviews Dr. Thomas J. Tobin, who discusses the power of “the big five: voice, choice, agency, safety, and belonging” in teaching and learning. Dr. Tobin is a specialist in Teaching, Learning, and Academic Technology at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. He is a celebrated scholar and speaker on technology-mediated education and is the co-author of Reach Everyone, Teach Everyone: Universal Design for Learning in Higher Education.Dr. Tobin shares his belief that all learners are capable of transforming themselves with the right tools, time, and the space to imagine new possibilities in their lives. He offers strategies for meeting both students and faculty where they are and implementing evidence-based practices to support success in the classroom. Paraphrasing Dr. Tobin:The real joy of teaching is seeing your learners engage with problems, ideas, and concepts in ways that you might never have thought to do.People, groups, institutions, systems—they don't change unless they themselves perceive a need to do so. I’ve had far more success when I ask questions to allow people to identify their own challenges than just coming in with suggestions.It all goes back to motivation; unless you have a reason why you want to learn something, you don't learn it. And if you have a genuine reason to stick with a learning process, you'll stick with it way beyond what other people tell you to do. That's the kind of inspiration and engagement that we aspire to as learning designers.Additional resources:Dr. Tobin’s website,, featuring links to all of his publications and photographs of his fabulous handlebar mustacheChickering & Gamson’s Seven Principles for Good Practice in Undergraduate Education: Resource guide from the University of FloridaCoLab Podcast Episode 7- Universal Design for LearningEditors: Megan Hamilton Giebert, Lorrie Weldon, and LaToya Hinton (March, 2023)

  • Creating a Culture of Innovation and Entrepreneurship on Campus

    Creating a Culture of Innovation and Entrepreneurship on Campus

    Josh Luckens interviews a team of Wentworth colleagues who he collaborates with to design hands-on, experiential learning opportunities for students at Accelerate, Wentworth's Entrepreneurship and Innovation Center.The team shares how they create fertile learning spaces where failure is seen as necessary for growth, offering strategies for empowering students with the tools to be innovative and bring an entrepreneurial mindset to all areas of their lives.Joe Schnackertz, a 2021 Wentworth graduate and Accelerate’s Program Coordinator, discusses the power of creating “spaces of yes” on college campuses—places for students to collaborate across disciplines, explore new ideas, and access resources to support students wherever they are on their learning journeys.Michael Mozill, Wentworth Professor of Business Management, shares how realizing that “a growth mindset is much more fun than a fixed mindset” led to a renaissance in his life that both enabled him to live from a place of intrinsic motivation and led him to be a better teacher.Ashley Lucas, Accelerate’s Executive Director, shares how curiosity continuously helps her overcome the fear of failure and empowers her to “be more entrepreneurial and innovative,” and how her curiosity expands her vision of the possible as Accelerate transforms from a makerspace to the vanguard of creative culture at Wentworth.Additional resources:Accelerate’s websiteAccelerate’s LinkedIn showcase page(February, 2023)