Fab Academy

Fab Academy 2019

The Fab Academy edition of 2019 will start mid-January 2019. Fablab Amsterdam will be one of the nodes in the Fablab network offering the course. All information about the academy can be found at: fabacademy.org. Applications for this edition are no longer possible.

What is the Fab Academy?

The Fab Academy is a distributed educational programme on Digital Fabrication, directed by Neil Gershenfield of MIT’s Center For Bits and Atoms and based on MIT’s rapid prototyping course, How to Make (Almost) Anything. Starting as an innovative training method, it is nowadays the most complete worldwide programme regarding Digital Fabrication within the Fablab Network. It provides advanced digital fabrication instruction for students through a democratized access to technological tools, resources and best practices.

Fab Academy offers a distributed rather than distance educational model: students learn in local workgroups, with peers, mentors, and machines, which are then connected globally by content sharing and video for interactive classes. When necessary, the individual labs are supported and supervised regionally by sites with more advanced capabilities, expertise, and inventories.

The Fab Academy Diploma consists of a 5 month part-time or full-time commitment, from January to June. The diploma is the combination of 16 certificates (listed below) and progress towards the diploma is evaluated by a student’s documentation and acquired skills rather than time or credits.

What do you learn

At the Fab Academy, you learn how to envision, prototype and document your ideas through many hours of hands-on experience with digital fabrication tools, taking a variety of code formats and turning them into physical objects. List of certificates:

1. digital fabrication principles and practices – 1 week
2. computer-aided design, manufacturing, and modeling – 1 week
3. computer-controlled cutting – 1 week
4. electronics design and production – 2 weeks
5. computer-controlled machining – 1 week
6. embedded programming – 1 week
7. 3D molding and casting – 1 week
8. collaborative technical development and project management – 1 week
9. 3D scanning and printing – 1 week
10. sensors, actuators, and displays – 2 weeks
11. interface and application programming – 1 week
12. embedded networking and communications – 1 week
13. machine design – 2 weeks
14. digital fabrication applications and implications – 1 week
15. invention, intellectual property, and business models – 1 week
16. digital fabrication project development – 2 weeks

Fab Academy at Fablab Amsterdam

Fablab Amsterdam is part of Waag. Fablab Amsterdam is one of the first Fablabs that hosted the Fab Academy when it was still a pilot in 2008. You can look at the online pages to check what our students made during their experiences: 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018.

To guarantee a complete and professional support to our students and a full accessibility to tools and machines, the number of available spots is limited and the course will be held only if the minimum number of students is reached.

How it works

During the Fab Academy programme global lectures are broadcasted every Wednesday. In Fablab Amsterdam we meet every Wednesdays to review the local weekly assignments and follow the global lecture together. The Thursday’s are dedicated to the local classes of which the topic varies per week. Other days of the week students have access to the Fablab machines, tools and support based.

Requirements and commitment

Students with all types of backgrounds attended the programme in Fablab Amsterdam. Artists, high school graduate students, teachers, engineers, computer scientists, professionals, fablab managers and designers followed the program. As a student, it is important to be motivated and self-directed learners.

More information

Curious about the previous projects developed in Fab Academy? You can check out the Fab Academy online archive.

Please note that the date of the first lesson is tentative. Students will be informed as soon as possible in January 2019.

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