3D Printing

Realising the full potential of 3D printers in the classroom.

In 2013 the Department for Education looked to explore new and innovative ways of teaching science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) and design subjects that realise the full potential of 3D printers in the classroom.

After a successful pilot project, the Secretary of State for Education allocated £500,000 to enable up to 60 teaching schools to purchase a 3D printer, and training for staff at those schools.

Technical Labs played a key part in the planning, development and rollout of the required software to manage the project.

A customised Umbraco based platform was created to capture engagement, best practice and knowledge sharing. User forums allowed the schools with 3D printers to communicate effectively with each other and the ability to share ideas and lessons plans quickly lead to a huge resource library growing dynamically from the community.

Realising the full potential of 3D printers in the classroom.

Technologies Used

  • Umbraco
  • Angular JS
  • SQL Server
  • Zendesk

Technical Labs were introduced to us by IndigoBlue in 2013 as we urgently needed a digital supplier willing to work very collaboratively, and flexibly to demanding deadline. As a small organisation we lacked in-house expertise and wanted to rely on expert advice from a supplier, placing a lot of trust in them in this respect. We were not disappointed! The project was complex and required a balance of technical integration and design, integration of payment systems, CRM and the implementation of paperless direct debit. They have invaluable knowledge of how to balance user experience with the critical commercial aspects of a site like ours, which is effectively my organisations shop front. The project was completed in September 2013, it proved at times very demanding and required good ongoing communication and significant additional effort at no additional cost to deliver successfully. The project was recognised in the 2014 Agile awards as the Best Project in the Not For Profit Sector, for its excellence in approach to project management. Since then we have continued to work with the team through 2014 and 2015 on numerous other projects and we remain impressed by their drive for quality and focus on delivery at affordable prices.

Richard Green MA, The D&T Association

Richard Green MA Chief Executive, The D&T Association

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