Fab Academy

Fab Academy is a six-month Digital Fabrication Program directed by Neil Gershenfeld of MIT's Center for Bits and Atoms with an unique, hands-on curriculum. Since 2014 Happylab is part of the international Fab Academy network.

Learn How to Make (Almost) Anything

Contents & Approach

Fab Academy is a six-month training program that takes place annually from January to June in more than 20 Fab Labs worldwide. Each lab that participates in the Fab Academy program is part of a global Fab Academy network. The local branches of the Fab Academy work with other participating Fab Labs and experts from around the wold via a distributed educational model where we pool our knowledge to provide a unique educational experience. We view and participate in global lectures broadcast from MIT on Wednesdays at 9 am – 12 pm EST. (Vienna Timezone 3 pm – 6:00 pm). The lectures are recorded and available to students throughout the semester. In addition, Fab Academy students have unlimited access to the digital fabrication machines at Happylab and are supported by their tutor.

Fab Academy students learn how to use the following rapid prototyping techniques:

  • Lasercutter, Vinylplotter, CNC-Fräse, 3D-Drucker, 3D-Scanner
  • Electronics design and production by producing circuit boards using a variety of sensors and output devices.
  • how to program AVR microcontrollers on the boards they have produced
  • how to program computer applications to interface with the circuit boards.
  • Molding and casting.

The Fab Academy is a fast paced, hands-on learning experience where students plan and execute a new project each week. Each individual documents their progress for each project, resulting in a personal portfolio of technical accomplishments. The Fab Diploma is the result of the sum of Fab Academy Certificates. Progress towards the diploma is evaluated by a student’s acquired skills rather than time or credits.


Durch einen einzigartigen Lehrplan und die Expertise internationaler Experten vermittelt die Fab Academy hands-on Erfahrungen mit digitaler Fabrikation. Die Studierenden der Fab Academy lernen, in einem internationalen Umfeld Ideen mit den digitalen Produktionsmaschinen ihres lokalen Fab Labs umzusetzen und digitale Codes in angreifbare Objekte zu verwandeln.

Der Umfang des Studiums beträgt zumindest 30 Stunden pro Woche, wobei der Großteil dieser Zeit frei eingeteilt werden kann.

Der Studienplan umfasst neben neuesten digitalen Design- und Fertigungstechnologien auch Module zu Elektronik, Patentschutz und Entwicklung von Geschäftsmodellen:

  • principles and practices, project management
  • computer-aided design
  • computer-controlled cutting
  • electronics production
  • 3D scanning and printing
  • electronics design
  • embedded programming
  • computer-controlled machining
  • molding and casting
  • input devices
  • output devices
  • composites
  • networking and communications
  • mechanical design, machine design
  • interface and application programming
  • applications and implications
  • invention, intellectual property, and income
  • project development
  • project presentation

Details zu den Terminen und Inhalten sind auf der Fab Academy Website abrufbar. Üblicherweise finden die Vorlesungen in Wien mittwochs von 15:00 - 18:00 Uhr statt. Aufgrund der unterschiedlichen Sommerzeitumstellung in Boston und Wien beginnen die mit Module am 11.3., 18.3. und 25.3. bereits 14:00 Uhr.


Fab Academy 2015 will take place from January 21 to June 3, 2015. Register by Novembter 30, 2014 here.

Fab Academy Students at Happylab:

Juliette Koch's Website

Myraida Rivera Marzán's Website

Rückblick: Fab Academy Student Projects 2014

How to apply

If you're interestend in participating at Fab Academy 2015, please send an e-mail to info@happylab.at!


The costs for the six-month Fab Academy are 5.000 USD and include all course materials, weekly lectures, personal support of tutors at Happylab and 24/7 access to Happylab for one year.