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3D Printing For Accessible Education

2015 September 30
by Amaya Webster

3d Printing National Forum

Thanks to a 2014 Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian Program grant from the Institute of Museum and LibraryPeople gathered around several tables at the 3D forum. Services (IMLS), Benetech held a three day forum on 3d printing in accessible education from June 17 through June 19, 2015 at the Tech Museum of innovation in San Jose.  Over forty-five practitioners and end users in the fields of 3D printing technology and services, accessible education, tactile learning modalities, library and museum services, and educational content convened to survey and understand existing efforts at the intersection of 3D printing and education. They also worked to identify ways in which makerspaces and 3D printing resources can transform the educational experience of students with disabilities. The event culminated with a Design Day that included a “3D printing hackathon” focused on designing models for inclusion in a collection of exemplary STEM 3D printable objects for accessible education.  To read the full article about the 3D forum please visit A related article written by ALA information policy analyst and forum participant Charlie Wapner can be read at You can also follow the conversation on twitter at #3dA11y.

3D printing Quick Start Guide

It is with great pleasure that we announce the release of the 3D Printing for Education Quick Start Guide. The guide is a direct result of the collaboration that took place during the IMLS-sponsored 3D Printing National Forum hosted by Benetech. The Quick Start Guide was created to help people use 3D technology in the classroom to facilitate accessible education and complements the work the DIAGRAM Center continues to do around 3d printing in education. The guide is an on-going living document intended to be a community-driven collaboration and we welcome and encourage feedback and comments.  If you wish to contribute to the guide, please email 3D <at>Benetech<dot>org.

Upcoming Webinar

Learn more about the IMLS-sponsored National Forum and the Quick Start Guide during a webinar hosted by DIAGRAM entitled “Building an Accessible Classroom with 3D Printing” on Wednesday, October 28, 2015. Stay tuned for more information and to find out when registration opens.

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