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3D Printing, also known as additive manufacturing and in industrial circles as rapid prototyping, is the process of building an object using a machine that puts down material layer by layer until the desired object is formed. Such printers use specifications generated by computer modeling applications or by 3D scans of existing objects. This process of creating 3D models is much faster than many traditional methods of creating prototypes or replicas of existing objects, facilitating an innovative culture of learning in which students can quickly move from imagination to the production of a solid model
Explore this resource site—a collection of EDUCAUSE and other resources related to 3D Printing.
Articles, Papers, and Reports
- Trends in 3D Printing. In this presentation is from CNI's December 2014 member meeting, James King of NIH and Kathlin Ray of the University of Nevada, Reno, describe 3D printing programs at their institution's libraries and explore what's different about 3D printing as a service in a library.
- Making It Real: 3D Printing as a Library Service, EDUCAUSE Review Online, October 2014. This article details findings from a University of Nevada, Reno, project that indicate that higher education's need for 3D printing services could be both substantial and broad-based across disciplines.
- High-Tech Maker Spaces: Helping Little Startups Make It Big, NPR, All Tech Considered, April 2014. Maker spaces have become hotbeds of technological innovation and entrepreneurship. Governments, universities and big corporations are noticing and beginning to invest in them.
- Making Way for Maker Culture, Alan Labb and Elizabeth Neely, EDUCAUSE Review, March 2014.
- Horizon Report: 2014 Higher Education Edition, The NMC Horizon Project, January 2014. This report describes six areas of emerging technology that will have significant impact on higher education and creative expression over the next one to five years.
- Video Competition: 2014 Horizon Report, February 2014. Each video focuses on one or two of the six 2014 technologies listed in this year's report, including 3D Printers
- ELI’s 7 Things You Should Know About 3D Printing, contributor: Tim Owens (University of Mary Washington), July 2012.
- 10 Ways 3D Printing Can Be Used In Education [Infographic], TeachThought, February 2013.
- Made in the USA – American companies behind the rise of 3D printers, 3DPrinterPrices.net, July 2013.
- 3D Printing: Making the Virtual Real, A Michael Berman, October 2007.
Institutions using 3D Printers
- Case Western Reserve University's think[box]
- University of Illinois, MakerLab
- Missouri University of Science and Technology
- University of Southern California, Viterbi
Associations and Vendors
Library Items on this Topic
EDUCAUSE Library Items for 3D Printing
- Five Questions for CIOs
January 27, 2014
Eric Denna is the CIO for the University of Utah and the Utah System of Higher Education. With this issue of EDUCAUSE Review, he begins a one-year term as Editor of the Viewpoints dep…
- Making IT Governance Work
October 5, 2010
This ECAR research bulletin details the strategic approach to IT governance currently in practice at Nottingham Trent University in the UK. With applicability to higher education institutions gl…
- EDUCAUSE Core Data Service 2007 Summary Report
October 8, 2008
EDUCAUSE Core Data Service Fiscal Year 2007 Summary Report summarizes much of the data collected through the 2007 EDUCAUSE core data survey about campus information technology (IT) en…
- Avoiding an IT House of Cards: Building Your Own Solid Foundation
October 15, 2010
A session at the EDUCAUSE 2010 Annual Conference
Arguably there hasn't been a more challenging time than now to consider the "ideal" structure for IT organizations. A multitude of issues, challenges, and stressors affect our abilit…
- Organizing IT for Optimal Value: Which IT Governance Structure Is Best for Your Organization?
October 30, 2008
A session at the EDUCAUSE 2008 Annual Conference
Many of our organizations are facing similar pressures to maximize IT investments, mitigate security risks, and align IT planning with organizational strategic initiatives. In this session we will …