“Learning by doing” is a cornerstone of MIT’s educational philosophy, and “making” is an important part of the MIT experience. Makerspaces located throughout the campus offer access to tools and space for members of the MIT community to invent, prototype, and bring their ideas to physical life. MIT has over 40 design/build/project spaces that add up to over 130,000 ft2 (12,077 m2). Tools and facilities for CNC routing, 3D printing, glassblowing, wood and metal working, moldmaking and casting, robotics, circuitry, textiles, ceramics, biomaking, and more are available for class and personal projects.

Recognizing the importance of the maker experience to an MIT education, the Institute initiated Project Manus (housed within MIT's Innovation Initiative) in 2016 with the goal of creating the gold standard in next-generation academic maker systems. Current projects include MakerLodge, a first-year maker training program; The Deep and Metropolis, open-access makerspaces optimizing hands-on trainings for the MIT community; Mobius, an app for locating maker resources on campus as well as paying for materials; and the Make Impact Consortium.