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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
- "This Place is Awesome!": Program, Service, and Staff Planning for the Center for Science and Social Science Information
March 12, 2013
A session at the NERCOMP Annual Conference
This session will address how new services, staffing models, and a renovated space were created to support today's interdisciplinary and technology-dependent scholarship. The Yale Science Libr…
- 7 Things You Should Know About Analytics
April 7, 2010
Analytics tools provide statistical evaluation of rich data sources to discern patterns that can help individuals at companies, educational institutions, or governments make more informed decisio…
- A "Plug-in" Approach to Information and Technology Services Strategy
June 1, 2011
The University Technology Council at Framingham State began developing new recommendations and proposed initiatives for updates to the University’s strategic plan in 2010. The resulting 5 …
- A College-Wide Collaboration Develops a Multilayer Approach for Improving Campus Safety
November 5, 2009
A session at the EDUCAUSE 2009 Annual Conference
Regardless of a college's location—urban, suburban, or rural—students and parents have increasing expectations that campuses will keep students from harm. A college-wide partnership at SUN…
- A Doable Vision
January 1, 2003
The processes that the Maricopa Community Colleges and the University of Wisconsin-Madison used to vision the future and the resulting ideas will be presented. We will briefly describe the process …
- A Model of American Higher Education in the Middle East
July 30, 2007
Good Ideas A Model of American Higher Education in the Middle East The American University of Kuwait relies on its technology infrastructure to support and deliver the American model of hig…
- A Report on the EDUCAUSE Information Technology Governance Summit
November 14, 2007
In a continuation of the EDUCAUSE initiative to host forums for discussion of issues of importance to higher education, the Information Technology Governance (ITG) Summit was held September 10–…
- Above-Campus Services 2011: Progress to Production
October 20, 2011
A session at the EDUCAUSE 2011 Annual Conference
Above-campus services have moved from the planning stages to production services, which include offerings from commercial suppliers, community organizations, and campus partnerships. This session w…
- Advice for an IT Advisory Committee
January 1, 2005
Professional Development Advice for IT Advisory Committees Observing a few key points will help you get the most from IT advisory committees at your institution By William H. Pritchard…
- Aligning IT with Institutional Strategy: Learning to Think in a New Language
March 19, 2013
A session at the Midwest Regional Conference
Aligning technology with institutional strategy is about technologists learning to think and act in the language of the institution's success. That means they need to understand how to measure…