The capabilities of additive manufacturing (AM) open up designers’ solution space and enable them to build designs previously impossible through traditional manufacturing. To leverage AM, designers must not only generate creative ideas, but also propagate these ideas without discarding them in the early design stages. This emphasis on selecting creative ideas is particularly important in design for AM (DfAM), as ideas perceived as infeasible through the traditional design for manufacturing lens could now be feasible with AM. Several studies have discussed the role of DfAM in encouraging creative idea generation; however, there is a need to understand concept selection in DfAM. In this paper, we investigated the effect of two variations in DfAM education: 1) restrictive DfAM and 2) dual DfAM (opportunistic and restrictive) on students’ concept selection process. Specifically, we compared the creativity of the concepts generated by the students to the creativity of the concepts selected by them. Further, we performed qualitative analyses to explore the rationale provided by the students in making these design decisions. From the results, we see that teams from both educational groups select ideas of greater usefulness; however, only teams from the restrictive DfAM group select ideas of higher uniqueness and overall creativity. Further, we see that introducing students to opportunistic DfAM increases their emphasis on the complexity of designs when evaluating and selecting them. These results highlight the need for DfAM education to encourage AM designers to not just generate but also select creative ideas.

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