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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
- Go Blended! A Handbook for Blending Technology in Schools
February 13, 2015
Go Blended! is a practical guide for educators interested in initiating a blended learning program. Author Liz Arney clearly offers boots-on-the-ground support for laying the foundation for a ble…
- Hire Education: Mastery, Modularization, and the Workforce Revolution
July 21, 2014
This book illuminates the great disruptive potential of online competency- based education. Workforce training, competency-based learning, and online learning are clearly not new phenomena, but o…
- Deeper Learning: How Eight Innovative Public Schools Are Transforming Education in the Twenty-First Century
June 17, 2014
Studies suggest that up to half of high school dropouts leave school because their classes are boring or irrelevant to their lives and aspirations. Yet the majority of U.S. schools continue their…
- Video: Game Changers
July 18, 2012
A trailer for the new book edited by EDUCAUSE President, Diana Oblinger. A trailer for the new book edited by EDUCAUSE President, Diana O…
- Cultivating Change in the Academy: 50+ Stories from the Digital Frontlines at the University of Minnesota in 2012
July 9, 2012
Cultivating Change is an eBook designed to stimulate discussion about what’s possible as well as generate new vision and academic technology direction. It serves as a means for faculty, ins…
May 2, 2012
From Game Changers Among the many strengths of higher education, the ones most frequently mentioned are the roles played by its mission that yield value to society and help create the futu…
May 2, 2012
From Game Changers Diana G. Oblinger This book is dedicated to education. We need more education, deeper education, more effective education, more access to education, and more affo…
- Chapter 1: The Knowledge Economy: Challenges and Opportunities for American Higher Education
May 2, 2012
A chapter from Game Changers Paul E. Lingenfelter The late Peter Drucker apparently first used the phrase "the knowledge economy" in his 1969 book The Age of Discontinui…
- Chapter 7: Early Days of a Growing Trend: Nonprofit/For-Profit Academic Partnerships in Higher Education
May 2, 2012
A chapter from Game Changers Daniel Pianko and Josh Jarrett Higher education presidents have lamented that the sector is caught in an "iron triangle," where access, qualit…
- Case Study 3: Austin Peay State University: Degree Compass
May 2, 2012
A case study from Game Changers Tristan Denley Students entering higher education face the sometimes daunting task of navigating their way through a degree program. Confronted with …