Courses and Symposiums

Past Courses:

Academic Makerspace Courses

SUMMER 2020: Enabling Remote Making and Hands-on Activities during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Making and hands-on activities are a critical part of education. The COVID-19 pandemic has presented challenges to this modality but it is still possible. This course will provide best practices for enabling remote making now.

Makerspace Technology

Academic Makerspace Courses provide makerspace operators and managers with a solid foundation of the most common maker equipment. Participants will get an in-depth examination into the entire process of equipment selection and purchase, installation, staffing, training, and use to maximize your students’ hands-on access while minimizing risks, hazards, and costs.

Get hands-on practice with the following maker technologies: drill presses, band saws, measurement tools, FDM 3D printers, laser cutting/engraving, thermoforming, soldering, CNC machining, circuit board milling, vinyl cutting, and sewing machines.

Past and Future Symposiums

4th International Symposium on Academic Makerspaces

ISAM, Yale and Olin – 2019

October 16th – 18th, 2019 New Haven, Connecticut Co-hosted by Yale University and Olin College

3rd International Symposium on Academic Makerspaces

ISAM, Stanford – 2018

2nd International Symposium on Academic Makerspaces

ISAM, Case Western University – 2017

1st International Symposium on Academic Makerspaces

ISAM is a collaborative effort of the Higher Education Makerspace Initiative (
ISAM 2016 was held November 13th-16th, 2016

Program Proceedings Presentations Videos
Download Download Download   Claremont: Welcoming culture
Berkeley:   Community outreach
Olin:           Refresher videos
CWRU:      Hiring student staff
MIT:           Student-driven best practices
Yale:          Campus-wide impact
KTH:          Start up and IP rights
Old Lyme:  Highschool makerspace

and check out

Maker Share

Upcoming ISAM and complimentary milestones:

ISAM 2016 Synopsis:

ISAM joins the people, knowledge & inspiration that fuse to catalyze higher education makerspaces which maximize their impact on (i) the student learning experiences and (ii) alumni success.  We foster community, networking, interaction and learning between people who are passionate about making.  This community includes, but is not limited to, student and faculty advocates, upper administration/leadership, government policy makers, educational researchers and makerspace managers and other practitioners.

Why ISAM?  Higher education makerspaces impact the efficacy of student learning in fields that include science, engineering, mathematics, music, entrepreneurship, medical/biomedical, architecture, mathematics, literature, and more.  These spaces have demonstrated an ability to foster highly beneficial interdisciplinary interactions and supportive peer communities that extend beyond the boundaries of a makerspace.  This nascent field is fast growing, and now is the time to gather people and knowledge together so that resources are best used to rapidly and broadly infuse makerspaces into higher education.  ISAM was created to make this happen.

ISAM will gather, and make available, knowledge and best practices that may be used to form student maker communities, get students excited about using these spaces, perpetuate a culture of safe, fun and responsible use, measure/maximize educational and social impact, and to select appropriate practices, programming, safety policies, training, staffing and equipment.  ISAM believes in providing a balance of different approaches to creating, running and maintaining makerspaces that yield measureable impact.  This is facilitated via:
(1) Short courses that cover principles and practices
(2) Invited experts that provide insight into emerging areas, concepts and research
(3) Technical papers and poster presentations that disseminate the most recent advances
(4) Community discussions around core topics and new developments
(5) Community building and networking/making events