Published: June 10, 2015

The ASSETT 3D printerASSETT student staff investigated the uses of the ASSETT 3D printer that is available to CU Boulder College of Arts and Sciences courses for demonstration purposes.

What could you with the 3D printer?  First, get ideas.  Consider how you could use the ASSETT 3D printer to support students' learning.  Some great ideas are at  Make a 3D model of a polyhedron in math class.  Create a three dimensional topographic map that shows variations in terrain.  Print your own fossils to bring museum artifacts into your classroom.  Create a cross section of the heart or a larger than life cellular organelle for Biology class.  Imagine the possibilities in art class.  ASSETT students decided to design something functional: enhanced ski goggles that feed information as you glide.

Now that you have your idea, write your design.  Learn to draw in 3D for free with, or take free online 3D printing tutorials at  The ASSETT students pictured here designed plastic products in Blender software.  Blender allows the user to design products on a virtual three dimensional coordinate plane.  You can even write your design in Photoshop!

Third, purchase your materials.  ASSETT is happy to share its 3D printer for educational purposes for College of Arts and Sciences classes.  Next, you need to purchase filament to feed into the 3D printer.  The ASSETT students purchased the colored filament that feeds into the printer at local hardware stores.

Learn more about how 3D Printers work.