Blockchain in classrooms – How can education be improved?
Blockchain technology has proven to be a catalyst for change in a wide variety of industries in the years since the creation of Bitcoin (BTC) in 2009. The subsequent creation of several Blockchain and Altcoins projects has shown that Blockchain technology can provide innovative changes. in a broad spectrum.
The world of finance, logistics and even law has benefited directly from the various applications of Blockchain technology. Another sector that is beginning to accept its potential benefits is education. Educational institutions are a fundamental piece in the development of new technologies and the industry has not lagged behind in terms of adoption, implementation, as well as in the research and development of Blockchain technology applications.
The power of immutability without trust
One of the cornerstones of Blockchain network technology is its decentralized nature. Bitcoin and Ethereum (ETH) are essentially immutable accounting books that store information and value. Its success has provided a means for individuals and institutions to store information that cannot be altered or deleted by a third party.
The application of Blockchain technology in this regard makes it a perfect candidate for record keeping, intellectual property tests, credentials and academic records. This has come true in 2019.
One of the best examples comes from the so-called “island of the Blockchain” in Malta. In an important movement for both Blockchain technology and education, the Maltese government signed a contract for all educational records in the country to be stored in a network Blockchain The two-year pilot project will be carried out in collaboration with the software developer Learning Machine The project aims to store all records of the educational institutions of Malta.
Learning Machine has been a pioneer in this space for some time, having partnered with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in 2017 to issue digital diplomas to a select number of graduates. The pilot project allowed students to request and have access to the digital versions of their respective degrees, which are verifiable and tamper proof.
These certificates were issued using the open standard of Blockcerts. The technology is based on the first programs created by Learning Machine and MIT Media Labs in 2016. The software allows users to create, share and verify digital records. These are stored in a Blockchain network and are cryptographically protected. Since January, the University of Bahrain has also begun issuing diplomas and certificates using Blockcerts.
There are other cases of Blockchain technology that are used to store and control academic records. In February 2019, Sony and Fujitsu confirmed that this year a pilot project would be launched that would use Blockchain technology to record data and course qualifications. The joint venture will make foreign students participate in a test course for the Japanese language proficiency test. Students will use Fujitsu’s Fisdom online platform to take the course, while Sony’s Global Education Blockchain cloud services will record test results and course data.
The objective of the project is to give Human Academy, a language school for foreign students and a partner in entrepreneurship, the ability to compare the results of the Blockchain with the certificates presented by the students in the program. The ultimate goal is to give the institution the ability to accurately judge the general language proficiency and skills of future students.
The Singapore government has promoted its own system to provide digital certificates to graduates of 18 different educational institutions. The initiative was announced in May 2019 and uses its own OpenCerts platform, which works from the Ethereum platform to provide and verify digital certificates.
A Swiss university is also studying a Blockchain solution to combat the steady increase in fake diplomas. In September 2019, the University of St. Gallen introduced a pilot project that would use the Ethereum Blockchain to verify the validity of diplomas.
Working with Block Factory, a Blockchain startup based in Switzerland, will allow the university to verify academic credentials almost immediately, solving a process that traditionally takes days to complete. The university will create digital diplomas using the certi platform
The Alberta Institute of Technology in South Canada has also adopted Blockchain technology to provide digital copies of diplomas to the class that graduates in 2019. Nearly 5,000 students will have access to their diplomas in a Blockchain network and will be able to share these documents , thus eliminating the need for alumni to obtain copies of their academic and certified records only with the institution. It also allows recruiters and employers to easily verify the authenticity of student records.
Degrees and courses of Blockchain
Since Blockchain technology is built and maintained by software developers, it is necessary to teach courses on the subject. Dublin City University recently launched a Master’s program in Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT), Distributed Book Technology in Spanish, which is aimed at IT and Computer Science professionals with an honors degree. The certification was developed by ICT Skillnet and Blockchain Ireland by identifying the necessary skills and knowledge required by Blockchain technology engineers.
Earlier this year, an initiative led by two South Korean universities will see the launch of an entire Campus of Blockchain technology powered by its own cryptocurrency.
The partnership between Yonsei University and Pohang University of Science and Technology is expected to begin in late 2019. According to initial reports, the campus will use a knowledge exchange system based on a Blockchain network called Engram. The platform will be driven by a rewards system with its own token called Neuron, which will be redeemable for goods on campus.
However, this is not the first Blockchain campus. The University of Turkey Bahçeşehir opened a Blockchain technology center at Boston Northeastern University to provide information about the sector on campus. The University of Turkey hopes to get funding in the United States for its Blockchain sector and attract talent in this field to the country.
In the US, the University of Pennsylvania recently presented a new course on fintech that includes modules on cryptocurrencies and Blockchain technology. In addition, a major venture capital firm, Andreesen Horowitz, announced its plans in October 2019 to launch a school that deals with IT companies focused on cryptocurrencies.
Interestingly, Andreesen Horowitz’s “Crypto Startup School” will be free for students. The firm believes that start-up companies have the power to drive innovation in the cryptocurrency space, while helping conventional companies find ways to use cryptocurrencies and Blockchain technology.
In a unique case, Blockchain technology is also being used to manage the national enrollment of young children in kindergartens in Kazakhstan. The country requires that all parents request the registration of their children in local kindergartens, and this is mainly done in writing. The process was digitized in 2018, but was criticized for the mistakes made with data storage.
A solution based on Blockchain technology was proposed and accepted, and as of February 2019, this process has been carried out through an automated and transparent system. This allows parents to keep track and make changes to kindergartens in which they prefer their children to be placed.
Possible future applications
The last decade has shown that Blockchain technology can improve a large number of existing processes. In the education sector, it is mainly used to store and verify records. However, technology could also be used to improve library systems around the world, as the information school at San Jose State University explored.
The school proposes that Blockchain technology can be used to create and manage a metadata system for libraries. This would allow sharing books, documents and information between peers that can also be encrypted. A Blockchain network could easily manage access to certain material, as well as depending on the permissions granted to certain users.
The options are potentially endless when it comes to the applications of Blockchain technology in the education sector. Everything from assistance to record keeping can be managed through Blockchain networks, and all these are cases that are actively being explored.
Disclaimer: This press release is for informational purposes information does not constitute investment advice or an offer to invest. The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of infocoin, and should not be attributed to, Infocoin.