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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
- Student Experience
Student Experience True What are the three most important…
- 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…
- Cyberbullying within Higher Education: Are Educators Misinformed?
August 17, 2015
Research into cyberbullying in higher education found that respondents recognized it as an issue among college students, but believed it to be more serious at other institutions than their own, s…
- Online Students Develop Marketable Professional Skills
July 6, 2015
Key Takeaways Students preparing to take online courses anticipated gaining professional skills in addition to their online learning of the course content. A survey …
- Student Technology Orientation
Student Technology Orientation True Today's college …
- Engaging Students with a Mobile App
March 30, 2015
Key Takeaways Engaging first-year students in positive experiences can set the tone for the remainder of their educational careers. A major element of engagement is the soci…
- Examining the Student Experience Using Service Blueprinting
April 13, 2015
Students often face problems accomplishing their goals because colleges and universities have poor processes. Service blueprinting, a type of process map, focuses on the student (or customer) …
- Know Thy Students: Providing Aggregate Student Data to Instructors
March 30, 2015
Key Takeaways Learner-centered approaches to higher education require that instructors have insight into their students' characteristics , but instructors often prepare the…
- Mind the Gap: Connecting K–12 and Higher Education Educators to Improve the Student Experience
March 2, 2015
Matthew W. Stoltzfus is Senior Lecturer, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, at The Ohio State University. Ben Scragg is Program Manager, College Ready Ohio, Office of Distance Educ…
- Commuter Students Using Technology
September 15, 2014
Key Takeaways A multi-year qualitative study of undergraduates at six colleges at the City University of New York focused on how, where, and when students accomplished their …