Open Lab @ Hillman Image

Open Lab @ Hillman

Update: With the Oakland campus returning to Elevated Risk Posture, Open Lab is no longer able to accept manufacturing requests of any kind. Please continue reading to review our Elevated Risk Posture policies and for more information about our online training resources.

Open Lab remains committed to our mission during the COVID-19 crisis. We are working to observe University guidelines, refrain from creating additional opportunities for infection risk to our community, while continuing to provide support and resources for Pitt community members to incorporate emerging technologies into their teaching and learning.

While we are not able to facilitate any in-person activities, manufacturing, or equipment lending at this time, we are excited to announce the launch of Open Lab @ Canvas, an online space featuring training materials for a variety of tools as well as virtual support from our team.

When the Oakland campus re-enters the Guarded Risk Posture, Open Lab hopes be able to deliver manufacturing capabilities and limited equipment loans, both with contactless pickup procedures. Students will be required to complete virtual training beforehand in order to be familiar with the processes they are contracting out to us. Please note that for safety reasons there will be no in-person Virtual Reality services until further notice.

As conditions in our world and the University continue to change at a rapid pace, this temporary operational plan is subject to change.

Faculty members who would like to discuss integrating Open Lab’s resources into their teaching are encouraged to email us at open-lab@pitt.edu.

For more information on Open Lab’s policies for the Fall Term, read our current operational plan below.

Open Lab Functions in Each Operational Posture

Open Lab Functions in High Risk Posture

  1. Training: Online training available through asynchronous Open Lab @ Canvas (OL@C) modules or through remote consultation and training.
  2. Services: No equipment lending available; manufacturing limited to fulfilling requests for personal protective equipment (PPE) from University and local sources at Open Lab staff discretion.

Open Lab Functions in Elevated Risk Posture

  1. Training: Online training available through asynchronous Open Lab @ Canvas (OL@C) modules or through remote consultation and training.
  2. Services: No equipment lending available; manufacturing limited to fulfilling requests for PPE from University and local sources at Open Lab staff discretion.

Open Lab Functions in Guarded Risk Posture

  1. Training: Online training available through asynchronous Open Lab @ Canvas (OL@C) modules or through remote consultation and training. No in-person training.
  2. Services: All services limited to course-related projects. No public access inside Open Lab locations.
    • Lending: Limited equipment loans available through contactless pickup/drop off in or outside OL@H at designated times. Equipment quarantined and cleaned when returned.
      Manufacturing: Manufacturing completed by OL student staff after members have completed required online training. Members submit project files remotely for completion. Material requests considered but not guaranteed. Completed items available for contactless pickup at OL@H at designated times. Printing/cutting video streams may be available on Open Lab website.
  3. Open Lab staff will reassess the efficacy of Guarded Risk Posture (GRP) procedures after three weeks of sustained GRP to determine what services can be added or subtracted and whether to loosen course-only restrictions.



Open Lab @ Hillman is a collaboration between the University Center for Teaching and Learning and the University Library System. Through workshops, class sessions, consultations and trainings, we aim to connect the Pitt community with technology for hand-on making and experiential learning. Drop in to experience virtual reality, learn to 3D print, use a vinyl cutter,or borrow a 360 degree video camera.

About the Open Lab @ Hillman

Pitt students, staff, and faculty are all welcome at the Open Lab @ Hillman, where you’ll find support from staff who can provide training and guidance. In addition to personal and research-related projects, we also provide support for course-related projects, including instructional design consultations for instructors interested in exploring incorporating emerging technologies into their teaching. If you’d like to begin a project in the Open Lab @ Hillman, get training, or schedule a consultation, please start here to let us know how we can help you. Open-Lab-approved users who have already received training on the equipment they want to use can skip ahead to reserve time on equipment.

The lab is currently equipped with a virtual reality workstations, 3D printers, a vinyl cutter, 360 degree video cameras, and a laser cutter/engraver (currently located offsite). We'll continue to develop the equipment available here, so check back (and let us know what you'd like to see!).

We have a sister space on campus, Open Lab @ Alumni, with a different set of equipment and offerings. For more information, check out the Teaching Center’s Open Lab website.

Open Lab Online Training

Open Lab @ Canvas is our digital training space, created in collaboration with the University Library System’s Digital Stewardship Lab. Here you will find all of our currently offered online learning modules to assist you in learning how to use software or equipment that we and our members commonly use. These modules can be used for registered courses or for individual learners.

Workshops

Join us for workshops on a variety of maker techniques and equipment, such as:

  • 360 video creation
  • 3D printing
  • Fabrication using the vinyl cutter
  • Jewelry making with custom beads and pendants
  • Virtual reality

For more details and to register for your spot, see the Open Lab @ Hillman listings within the ULS workshops calendar.

Where to find us

The Open Lab @ Hillman is located in Hillman Library G-7, just next to the main entrance on the ground floor.