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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
- How Higher Ed is Becoming More Learner-Centered
October 5, 2015
Two ELI publications explore emerging trends Author: Malcolm Brown Director, EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative One way to gauge how post-secondary education is evolving i…
- Postsecondary Trending Now: It Takes a Village (Make That a City)
September 28, 2015
Institutions of postsecondary education aren’t islands, and they can’t pull off the completion agenda in ivory-tower isolation. In recognition of this, cities are joining forces with th…
- Alternative Credential Adoption in Higher Ed
September 25, 2015
Nanodegrees. Microcredentials. Digital badging. Whatever you might call them, various types of alternative credentials have gone mainstream in many areas outside of academi…
- Next Gen Finance for Higher Education
September 22, 2015
When it comes to finances, what should colleges and universities focus on? In today’s climate, what’s the right way to plan for a sustainable future? The concern over institutional…
- Wearable Technologies Gain Momentum in Higher Ed
September 21, 2015
Thanks to a device on her wrist, a colleague of mine knows when she’s had a restful night’s sleep as opposed to a more fitful one. Chances are, you know someone (or ARE someone) who …
- The Brink of Closure: What Motivates Higher Education to Change?
September 1, 2015
Author: James J. Koelbl, D.D.S., M.S., M.J. There are many articles written about the need for change in higher education. The primary options seem to be either reinvent the en…
- Closing the Credential Gap: Higher Education’s Accessibility Makeover
August 11, 2015
The launch of the 2015 Breakthrough Models Incubator When you gather a group of university leaders from across the country together in one room, you get widely varied perspectives on…
- Limited Relief from FCC Ruling on Auto-Dialing/-Texting
August 7, 2015
(August 7, 2015) (EDUCAUSE telecommunications policy advisor, John Windhausen of Telepoly Consulting, provided the primary content for this post.) In early June, I wrote about the then-pe…
- The Importance of Mastery and Working Smart
July 8, 2015
Jack Suess is Vice President of IT and CIO at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC). This is the second in my blog post series building on Richard St. John's TED Talk &quo…
- Competency-Based Education: What We Learned from Experience
July 1, 2015
Author: Mary W. Hendrix, Vice-President for Student Access and Success, Texas A&M University-Commerce Jolene Applegate started her degree in 1976 and was one of the first…