It’s no secret 3d printing technology is revolutionizing industries all over the world. From product design to manufacturing, the technology is currently being used in various aspects of our everyday lives.
With the advancement of 3d printing technology comes competition and price reduction, making it easier to acquire a 3d printer.
Looking at the benefits of 3d printing in education, it’s no surprise more and more schools are currently adopting this technology and developing curriculums that integrate 3d printing into education.
From basic to the tertiary levels, this technology is currently being used to make lessons more interactive and ensure learners can compete in the changing market.
As teachers, we need to embrace 3d printing technology to afford our learners all the benefits it comes with.
This means knowing more about 3d printing technology, how it works, and learning to use it ourselves to better integrate it into our lessons.
With lessons all over the internet, finding the right courses that will best serve you in your job as a teacher can become confusing.
This is why, we at PriorityLearn, have researched and put together a list of some of the best courses available to help teachers learn to leverage this technology in their role as teachers.
We will do well to include as much detail for these courses as possible to make it easier to make your decision.
Before proceeding to take one of these courses, it is advisable to read through the syllabus to ensure that lesson content is what you need.
If you’re looking for 3d printing courses online, the University of Illinois provides some of the best 3d printing courses on the market.
They have separate courses available on Coursera for each unique area of the technology.
Whether you want to learn more about the history of the technology and how it works, learn to create your own printable models, or even learn to build or repair a 3d printer, you can find separate courses for each specialty.
These courses are 100% online which enables you to learn at your own schedule and earn a certificate on completion.
These courses include:
This course is mostly for learners who would like to obtain a rich understanding of the capabilities of 3d printing and how to think about designing objects for 3d technology.
By learning from people with experience working with this technology in the field, academics, venture capitalists, and more, you will learn about the role of 3d printing in revolutionizing education and the role it can play in development in underserved communities in both developing and developed countries.
This is essentially going to introduce you to 3d printing technology, its usage in multiple industries, and how it is transforming lives and manufacturing.
- Understand how 3d printing enhances product customization
- Various industries can turn ideas into objects
- Role of 3d printing in revolutionizing education
- Role 3d printing can play in underserved communities
- Convert problems into ideas and objects
The second course on our list from the University of Illinois, this course is great for anyone with an interest in learning to create their own printable 3d models.
It will teach you to turn any idea into a 3d model instead of simply being limited to printing models created by others.
Simply think of something creative for your class, model it yourself, and proceed to print it for demonstrations and lessons.
You get beginner-friendly lessons on how to use TinkerCAD, basic and advanced lessons in Fusion 360, and learn to build complex objects easily.
The course will also teach you how to turn any objects into 3d models using different technologies like your phone camera, 3d scanner, and more.
If you’re looking to supplement your income, you can create complex models geared towards your curriculum and sell them online.
- Draw and communicate ideas in 2-dimension
- Learn to use TinkerCAD
- Basic and advanced Fusion 360
- Use various technologies to turn objects into 3d models
Similar to the first course on this list from the University of Illinois, this course will introduce you to 3d printing, what it can be used for, and its potential future usage scenarios.
Unlike the first course, this course will not only introduce you to the technology but also teach you how to print a model using the 3d printer and also know how to customize 3d designs.
- Know what 3d printing is
- How 3d printing works
- What objects 3d printers can make
- How 3d printing can impact industries
The last course on our list from the University of Illinois is the 3d printing hardware course. This course is great for anyone with an interest in the mechanics of the 3d printer.
The course provides insight into the history of 3d printing technology, how to create the device, how to repair it, and how to use it as well.
Mastering this course will enable you to operate, repair, upgrade a 3d printer and also become familiar with the different types of 3d printers.
If you have an interest in learning about the architecture of the 3d printer, this course is the perfect choice for you.
- History of the creation of 3d printers
- Forms of 3d printing
- Types of desktop 3d printers
- Understand desktop 3d printing hardware
- How 3d printers function
- Troubleshooting, technical support, and preventative maintenance
Note: Coursera also provides financial aid to learners who cannot afford to pay the fee. Simply click the Financial Aid beneath the “Enroll” button to fill in the application form.
Learn to model your unique designs for your class using the blender software in this course.
If you are used to 3d modeling, you must have heard of Blender.
Blender is a free and open-source 3D computer graphics software toolset used for creating animated films, visual effects, art, 3D printed models, motion graphics, interactive 3D applications, virtual reality, and computer games.
It has been around for close to three decades and is one of the most popular 3d modeling applications on the market.
Using Blender means you do not need to spend money buying any 3d modeling software to enroll in this course.
When it comes to 3d modeling, this course is ranked number one on Udemy in terms of rating and popularity.
The course is beginner-friendly and will help you create and bring your designs to life.
It is worth noting that this class doesn’t provide any technical details on using a 3d printer but helps equip you with the required knowledge to successfully model any ideas or creations which can then be sent to a 3d printer for printing.
- Use Blender and understand its interface
- Understand the principles of modeling
- Create 3D models with simple colors
- Learn the basics of animation
- Create your own materials
- UV map and unwrap your models
Note: You can save on this course by purchasing at a discounted price.
If you’d like an alternative to using Blender for 3d modeling, then this course is the right choice for you.
This course teaches how to create your own 3d models for 3d printing using the free Autodesk Fusion 360 software.
The course is beginner-friendly and will teach you all the best practices when designing your models for 3d printing.
Imagine your student thinking of an improvement to an already existing or new product. Simply model it and print it out to test as a working prototype.
Make every one of your lessons interactive by acquiring the skills to turn your learners’ ideas into reality.
- Learn the skills to design your own models for 3D printing using Autodesk Fusion 360
Note: You can save on this course by purchasing at a discounted price.
This course tackles the challenges 3d printer enthusiasts encounter when they start out.
It provides information on the stages of 3d printing, its history, and tips and tricks that will enable you to achieve the best-printed results.
If you want to acquire a 3d printer or you already own one in your class, this course will help you navigate any problems you might face.
It helps you with any tips and hacks and ensuring your device has been put in the best setting to get the best quality delivery.
That said, this course does not provide training on creating your own 3d models so I wouldn’t recommend it for anyone who wants to learn how to create their own models.
- Choose the right FDM 3D printer for your needs
- Understand how an FDM 3D printer works
- Use “slicing” software to create great 3d Prints
- Finish and paint your 3D prints
- Resources to awesome free 3D files for your 3D printer
Another course on 3d modeling with Fusion 360, this course provides you with everything you need to learn the basics of using the software to model your objects.
Leverage this course to print your complex 3d structures for your learners.
- Understanding of Fusion 360
- Create basic and advanced shapes
- Import and redesign “stl” files
- Export “stl” files
This free course is a great option for anyone who wants to gain some insight into 3d printing technology and how to use a 3d printer.
From this course, you will learn about the various components of the 3d printer, how to feed the filament into the 3d printer and how to calibrate the 3d printer to ensure that objects are printed correctly on the plate.
The course also provides an introduction to the different 3d print software that can be used to design 3d objects.
- How to set up and use the Printrbot simple 3d printer
- Features of 3d builder software
- How 3d builder software can be used for 3d printing
- Types of 3d printable 3d objects
This free course provides five tutorials intended to aid beginners transform their ideas into 2-dimensional creations and then finally create 3-dimension models that can be printed.
The lessons use only free tools making it easy to follow and equip you with the basics in 3d modeling and printing.
You also learn how to convert images to 3d models and critical basic concepts in computer-aided design (CAD).
The lessons have been summarized to make them easy to follow and can be completed in about 30 minutes.
- Digitize your designs in Photoshop
- Export designs from Photoshop
- Design 3d models in TinkerCAD
Lynda.com, now LinkedIn Learning also has some of the best collections of courses for 3d modeling and 3d printing.
Simply subscribe to their monthly or annual service and get access to their portfolio of amazing courses.
Whether you want to learn how 3d printing works, learn about 3d printing hardware, troubleshoot a 3d printer, or learn how to design 3d models for 3d printing, LinkedIn Learning has you covered.
At $30 a month for a monthly subscription or $20 per month for an annual subscription, their package is great for extensive learning as there are over 16k+ courses available.
First on our list from LinkedIn Learning is a collection of courses from Kacie Hultgren, a multidisciplinary designer.
You will find 10 unique courses from this instructor covering creating your own models, scanning, and even designing and printing replacement parts.
Her courses include:
This course is meant to introduce you to 3d printing. From choosing a 3d printer to learning about 3d modeling, the author walks learners through a variety of 3d design tools.
Whether you have no experience with 3d printing and modeling or not, this course is great for anyone looking to learn more about this technology.
- What 3d printing is
- Uses of a 3d printer
- Understand the different 3d printing technologies
- Repairing and exporting a 3d file
Another from Kacie Hultgren, this course focuses on teaching learners the basics of Tinkercad. Learn to create complex geometry with the free Tinkercad software.
It’s a two and half hour course packed with tips to help you get started with creating your 3d models for printing.
- Set up Tinkercad grid
- Building complex shapes
- Manipulating 3d shapes
- Import 2d and 3d assets
- Write codeblocks for 3d design
You can find more courses from Kacie Hultgren
Do you have a 3d printer but don’t know how to use it? Do you want to learn how to produce the best results from your 3d printer? Are you experiencing challenges with your 3d printer?
This course provides answers to these questions and more. You get a review of common 3d printer problems to save you time and energy.
To sum it up, this course teaches you how to set up your 3d printer to get the best quality results from your prints.
It’s a one and half hour course and well worth the effort. You learn how to set up your 3d printer for optimal performance and results.
- Select best print resolution
- Retraction, filament, extrusion, and nozzle settings
- Setting printer temperature and speed
- Learn auto-leveling
This certification program comes from one of the leaders in the 3d printing technology market.
With training specifically meant for educators, Makerbot provides a Makerbot educators guidebook and the Makerbot teacher certification course for sale at competitive prices.
The teacher certification online course guides you in setting up and running your 3d printer successfully in the classroom.
If you’ve acquired a Makerbot 3d printer and would like to become an expert in using the printer to enhance your lessons, this course is the right choice for you.
- Understand 3d printing technology
- 3d printing history
- Become a Makerbot 3d printing expert
- Troubleshoot common issues
- Setup Makerbot 3d printer
- Create your prints
The MakerBot Educators Guidebook is the most comprehensive blueprint for how to introduce 3D printing into your classroom.
Written by MakerBot in collaboration with the largest community of 3D printing educators, this guidebook includes a crash course in 3D printing, 9 classroom-ready 3D printing projects, and more!
Learn how to model custom 3d models for 3d printing using the Fusion 360 software.
The series is divided into eleven short classes all prepared to keep you engaged and gain the necessary skill to create your own shapes and objects for printing.
From downloading the Fusion 360 software to creating basic and complex models, this course is beginner-friendly and equips learners with everything they need to develop their skills in 3d modeling.
The classes are designed to be followed in sequential order as subsequent classes are built on the foundations of preceding classes.
Learners get to try their hands-on practical projects like designing a pair of tweezers, coat hook, wrench, vacuum nozzle, tablespoon, soap dish, bottle opener, taco stand, ship wheel, and hair comb.
These practical projects will enable you to try your hands on real-world projects and translate them into 3d models that can be printed.
Give this course a try and you won’t regret it.
- Learn to navigate Fusion 360 environment
- Create 3d custom models
Curious about 3d printing but don’t know where to start? This class will provide you with an insight into 3d printing technology.
You’ll learn about the history of the technology and how to easily turn your 2d prints into 3d models that can be printed.
The class is beginner-friendly helps you get acquainted with some of the tools necessary to easily create your 3d objects.
- Understand 3d printing
- Sketch design on paper
- Import paper image to software
- Customize 3d object
In short, this introductory course takes you through the design thinking process to successfully identify a practical problem that you can solve with a 3d printer.
With expertise as a designer and technologist, Lauren Slowik walks you through ideation, creating a 3d design to printing your final product.
The class is beginner-friendly and aims to equip learners with the necessary skills to be able to prototype and turn their designs into 3d printed objects.
- Learn to ideate
- Sketch ideas
- 3d modeling
- Select right material for your print
If you’re looking for a professional development course to guide you in integrate 3d printing technology into your lessons, then look no further.
This course will give access to a certified course for teachers, downloadable lesson plans, and training resources.
It’s a 12-month subscription that will provide in-depth knowledge into 3d designing, 3d printing, the best settings to achieve the best results for your prints, and many more.
- Learn best slicer settings
- Understand 3d printing
- Learn 3d design
If you would like a package that covers all your staff, this course provides all the advantages from the Teacher license course and the extended advantage of unlimited accounts for all your staff.
This makes it a perfect choice for any schools or libraries that would like to provide all their staff with the expertise or knowledge in 3d printing technology.
- Learn best slicer settings
- Understand 3d printing
- Learn 3d design
The Bottom Line
Although some people consider 3d printing as a gimmick, the truth of the matter is that the technology is already being used to revolutionize industries all over the world.
In the education industry, its benefits are clear and schools have already started incorporating 3d printing technology into their curriculum.
As teachers, our responsibility is to ensure that we keep up with current technology to ensure that our learners have the skills to compete in an ever-changing global market.
Getting started with this technology may seem like a herculean task, but the courses listed in this article will help you acquire the know-how to model your own designs, set up your 3d prints properly, and make your classes more interactive.
Yes and No. The answer is relative to the learner. Using the right printer setup and creating 3d models are two of the biggest challenges for beginners. If you’re willing to put in the work, you can find the resources necessary to learn how to create your 3d models and the right setup for your 3d prints.