There is no global accreditation for these skills. Instead, each student builds a portfolio that documents their mastery of them individually, and their integration. These are reviewed by their local instructors, regional gurus, and then centrally to ensure that each student meets global standards and follows evolving best practices. The Fab Diploma is earned by progress rather than the calendar, for successful completion of a series of certificate requirements. The instructional sequence requires six months to cover, and the time to finish has ranged from that up to a few years.
The Fab Diploma is awarded by the Fab Academy. It has no institutional connection with MIT (and none should be claimed), but a number of the participating sites offer it overlaid with their local accreditation. It recognizes readiness to work in, and establish, a fab lab. The Fab Diploma has led to students obtaining employment, investment, admission, and recognition.
The Fab Academy platform has subsequently been used to add classes (collectively called Academany) that share the model of hands-on instruction to students in workgroups, with local mentors, linked by shared content and interactive lectures by global leaders. The first of these is How To Grow (almost) Anything, an introduction to biotechnology with a faculty team led by Harvard’s Prof. George Church, with more classes under development, as well as programs for more advanced study planned.
Diploma / Individual Fab Academy 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
Check the Fab Academy content archive for more information: http://academy.cba.mit.edu