Making as learning: makerspaces in universities

Wong, Anne and Partridge, Helen (2016) Making as learning: makerspaces in universities. Australian Academic and Research Libraries, 47 (3). pp. 143-159. ISSN 0004-8623


Makerspaces are more than just places to make things; a makerspace is ‘a physical location where people gather to share resources and knowledge, work on projects, network, and build’ (Educause, 2013). The NMC Horizon Report: 2015 Higher Education Edition lists the time-to-adoption of makerspaces within the higher education context, as two to three years (Johnson, Adams Becker, Estrada, & Freeman, 2015). While there is a push to include makerspaces in universities, little is known about the experience of establishing makerspaces on academic campuses. This paper provides an exploratory look at makerspaces within universities and aims to specifically address the research question: What are the experiences of Australian universities with makerspaces? A qualitative approach to data collection was undertaken by reviewing Australian university websites. Makerspaces are noted in 12 of 43 Australian universities websites (October, 2015). Typically, these makerspaces employ specialist staff, contain 3D printers and laser cutters, and offer facilities to conduct coursework, personal and collaborative projects. Finally, pop-up makerspaces have been employed by some universities as an exploratory stage to gauge interest in makerspaces before implementing a permanent space. Surveying key stakeholders associated with Australian academic makerspaces is recommended as a next step.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Permanent restricted access to Published version in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Division of Academic Services - No Department (Feb 2011 - )
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Division of Academic Services - No Department (Feb 2011 - )
Date Deposited: 16 Sep 2016 01:22
Last Modified: 07 Jan 2020 23:37
Uncontrolled Keywords: makerspaces, universities, higher education, libraries, academic libraries
Fields of Research (2008): 08 Information and Computing Sciences > 0807 Library and Information Studies > 080706 Librarianship
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): B Economic Development > 89 Information and Communication Services > 8903 Information Services > 890302 Library and Archival Services
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