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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
- The Evolution Continues: Considerations for the Future of Research in Online and Blended Learning
June 16, 2015
The model of online learning that has evolved over the past 20 years relies on ubiquitous data communications that are owned and operated routinely by all segments of the population. Today, peopl…
- How Students Engage with a Remedial English Writing MOOC: A Case Study in Learning Analytics with Big Data
March 23, 2015
Insufficient academic preparation is a major barrier to student success in higher education in the United States, and a large percentage of students who require remedial education become …
- Study of Students and Information Technology, 2014
October 30, 2014
For the 2014 student techology use study, ECAR also collaborated with 213 institutions to collect responses from 75,306 undergraduate students about their technology experiences. Key F…
- Finding New Business Models in Unsettled Times
November 10, 2014
If the core crisis in higher education is one of sustainability, being focused on the job to be done and having a grasp of the forces shaping higher education gives institutional leaders a new…
- U.S. Dept. of Ed. Links State Authorization and Gainful Employment Regs.
October 31, 2014
Russ Poulin, Deputy Director of Research and Analysis at WCET, has posted an initial update on the U.S. Department of Education's new gainful employment regulations and the suprising link th…
- Creating a Fluid Learning Environment
October 13, 2014
Key Takeaways By 2025, mobile natives — students born after the Apple iPhone went to market — will be entering higher education , bringing with them an era of mobile l…
- Higher Education in 2024: Glimpsing the Future
September 15, 2014
A conversation about possible futures and multiple present trends could help those of us involved in higher education and technology to think more clearly about how what comes next emerges fro…
- Setting the Stage for Digital Engagement: A Five-Step Approach
September 15, 2014
The practical, pedagogical, and privacy implications of a smart, connected digital campus engaged with its constituents have yet to play out. To handle whatever comes next, colleges and univer…
- Resources for Presidents and Senior Executives
September 3, 2014
These executive briefs are designed to help senior institutional leaders—presidents, provosts, trustees, and deans—optimize the impact of IT in higher education. The Foundations o…
- Better Understanding through Data: Completion, Motivation, and Learning in Minnesota MOOCs
June 19, 2014
In the summer of 2013, faculty members at the University of Minnesota collaborated with staff from the university’s Office of Information Technology and provost’s office to deliver five massi…