Providing students with access to 3D printing technology has many benefits including:

  • Increasing students interest and engagement across multiple subject disciplines.
  • Providing practical applications for mathematics, science, computing and design technology.
  • Adding value to STEM activities.
  • Developing students practical design skills and preparing them for careers in multiple disciplines that utilise additive manufacturing technology.
  • Developing life skills such as critical thinking, problem solving, creativity, innovation and perseverance.

Although many schools may recognise the benefits of 3D printing technology, there are many barriers to introducing and implementing the technology in schools. The main aim of the CREATE Education Project is to help and support schools in overcoming these barriers by providing resources, help, support, professional development and access to our education community. We even provide a FREE 3D Printer Loan Scheme that allows schools and students to experience the technology.

However the one barrier we can’t help schools with is the budget barrier. Although the cost of 3D Printing technology has dropped significantly in recent years, school budgets are being increasingly squeezed and many schools simply just do not have the spare budget to be able to invest in purchasing a 3D Printer.

With this in mind, we have put together some ideas to help schools explore ways to raise or access the funds required to purchase a 3D Printer. Login to download this handy funding ideas guide.

Education Grants & Awards

There are a plethora of grants and awards available for schools from a variety of industry associations, charitable organisations and trusts. One barrier to accessing these grants is knowing what is available. The CREATE Education project will update this page to list any grants or funding opportunities that we become aware of in the space below, however we do not have information of everything that is out there. If you know of any other funding opportunities please contact us so that we can share this information with our education community.

The Wolfson Foundation

The Wolfson Foundation provides education grants to secondary schools demonstrating excellence and to also to primary and secondary special schools providing for children with disabilities.

The Secondary Education Programme is primarily dedicated to supporting the teaching of A-Levels and GCSEs at high-achieving state-funded schools and sixth form colleges through the funding of capital projects. The Wolfson Foundation currently allocates approximately £1.75 million each year to (a) new build, refurbishment or equipment projects related to the teaching of science and technology, or (b) information or communications technology directly related to learning for projects involving libraries, languages, music or the arts. Grants are awarded in each area in June and December every year.

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Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET)

The IET Engineering Education Grant Scheme provides support for UK-based educational projects that aim to increase engineering knowledge in young people aged 5 – 19. There are two levels of funding available. Awards of up to £5000 (inclusive of any applicable VAT) are available for standard applications to the fund, and up-to-four awards of £15,000 are available each year.

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The Royal Society

The Royal Society Partnership Grants Scheme is open to schools to enable students, aged 5 – 18, to carry out science, technology, engineering or mathematics (STEM) projects. Additionally they are looking to support projects on computing and data science. The grants offer up to £3000 to UK schools or colleges to buy equipment to run a STEM investigation project in partnership with a STEM professional (research or industry).

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Institute of Physics (IOP)

The IOP School Grants Scheme provides grants of up to £600 for projects or events linked to the teaching or promotion of physics and engineering in schools and colleges based in the UK, catering for students in the age range five to 19.

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Arkwright Engineering Scholorships

The Arkwright Engineering Scholarship are awarded to high-calibre 16 year old students to inspire and nurture school-age students to be the country’s future leaders of the Engineering Profession. The scholarships support students through the two years of their A levels, Scottish Advanced Highers or equivalent qualifications and provide the student with a £600 personal finance award and the school with a £400 financial award which it must spend on equipment, materials or teacher training to enhance the delivery of STEM subjects.

Every Scholarship is sponsored by a commercial company, trade association, university, professional institution, armed service, government organisation, worshipful company,  charitable trust or personal donor. This means that support is offered in various different ways, for example, valuable hands-on work experience, support for the students curriculum project and a personal mentor who can help them with aspects of their studies and career planning.

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National Centre for Excellence in the Teaching of Mathematics (NCETM)

NCETM have collated and maintain a list of organisations offering funding available to schools for undertaking various sorts of mathematical activities.

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