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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
- 2015 ACUTA/NACUBO State of Resnet Report
April 20, 2015
The 2015 report is a comprehensive survey designed to measure the broad variation in practice and policy within higher education and lay the groundwork for long-term trend analysis and benchmarki…
- TCO for Cloud Services: A Framework
April 24, 2015
One of the common justifications for moving to cloud services is cost savings , but the data are often insufficient to support such claims due to the inherent challenges in effec…
- The Higher Education IT Service Catalog: A Working Model for Comparison and Collaboration
April 8, 2015
The implementation of a service catalog is an important step in transforming from a technology-oriented organization into a service-oriented organization. The service catalog is a veh…
- 2014 CDS Benchmarking Report
February 25, 2015
Traditionally, the Core Data Service annual report has summarized the state of higher education IT; however, the strength of CDS data are shown through their benchmarking capability. To serve…
- EDUCAUSE Core Data Service 2014 Almanacs
February 18, 2015
These two-page, easy-to-scan summaries distill CDS data in a variety of categories that include IT Financing, IT Staffing, Support Services, and many other service areas. All Non-Speciali…
- Institutional Practices and Faculty Perspectives on Research Computing in Higher Education
December 1, 2014
Contemporary scientific and scholarly research is highly dependent on technology, and information technology units play a primary role in enabling research in higher education . Strong r esea…
- Updates to the Core TechQual+ Survey for 2015
December 19, 2014
The Higher Education TechQual+ Project is a research project that develops tools to help IT leaders create a culture of continuous improvement for their organizations. More information on the Tec…
- 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…
- Making It Real: 3D Printing as a Library Service
October 27, 2014
Key Takeaways Findings from a University of Nevada, Reno, project indicate that higher education's need for 3D printing services could be both substantial and broad-based ac…
- Big Data in the Campus Landscape
September 12, 2014
This paper is a publication of the ECAR Campus Cyberinfrastructure (ECAR-CCI) Working Group. The topic of big data continues to receive a great deal of publicity because of its promise for openin…