May 7, 2018
As we all know, technology is changing at an incredible pace and the advent of nascent technologies will radically shape the future. Some of the technological innovations emerging every year have tremendous potential to shake up the world and make a gradual transformation in our lives. Most notable amongst them is blockchain, which is considered to be an ingenious invention since the birth of the Internet. The disruptive technology underpinning cryptocurrency such as bitcoin holds the potential in many more forms than just as a medium of exchange and store of value. And education sector is not an exception, a blockchain education system can help strengthen and transform the relationships among colleges and universities and, in turn, their relationship to society.
Why do we need blockchain?
Let’s explain in the simplest way. We all know that Internet was created to connect billions of people around the world, and it is undoubtedly a powerful tool for online communication and collaboration. However, because it is designed for moving and storing information rather than keeping value, it has done little to change the way we do business. For example, when professors send their students source of information such as e-mails, lecture notes, PowerPoint presentations, they are sending a copy, not the original. Therefore, it is possible for the receivers to print a copy of their PowerPoint file. Nevertheless, things will be different if people try to print money or diplomas. That’s why with Internet, we have to rely on powerful intermediaries to exchange things of value.
On the other hand, things would be better if there was an Internet of value — a global, distributed, highly secure platform where we could store and exchange things of value and where we could trust each other without the need for intermediaries. And that’s what blockchain is about – a new kind of Internet that allows everyone to have access to free disintermediated universal transfers of value. Trust is programmed into the technology, which is why blockchain is called the Trust Protocol.
What creates a blockchain education system?
#1: Maintaining the privacy and security
In 2013, the Education Advisory Board (EAB) published a list of 157 strategies for collecting data about students and alumni for colleges and universities to exploit in fundraising efforts, and institutions have become good at doing so. However, when it comes to protecting these data, colleges and universities are no less vulnerable than other large organizations. The University of California–Berkeley, Ohio State University, the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee, and Kirkwood Community College were amongst those organizations being hacked in recent years. Yale University accidentally published confidential information online, and Indiana University hosted such data on an unprotected site. The University of Utah Hospitals and Clinics, Stanford University, and the University of Miami stored data on laptops or data tapes that were later stolen.
With blockchain education system, virtually everything of value and importance to humankind can be recorded in a highly secure and transparent way, starting with birth certificates and moving on to educational transcripts, social security cards, student loans, and anything else that can be expressed in code. The blockchain uses public key infrastructure for establishing a secure and tamper-resistant platform.
#2: Disrupting the Current Education Model
Most students in this digital age receive education in both formal and informal learning settings, not just limited to traditional brick-and-mortar university lecture halls. As a result, the centralised model of present-day learning is no longer sustainable. However, with its cutting-edge features and applications, blockchain education system can open up total disintermediation and disaggregation for higher education.
Micro-accreditation could take place through a blockchain, allowing easy validation and transfer of skills and credentials.
#3: Eliminating the need for paper
Blockchain is a secure and permanent storage solution for all kinds of data, where records can be kept in perpetuity if needed. Awards and certificates can be awarded reliably, and university credits and other learning achievements can be kept track of across a student’s lifetime.
#4: Verifying credentials
At a time when information is abundant, fleeting and mutable, being able to verify a job prospect’s claims is becoming increasingly important to employers. According to CareerBuilder, 57 percent of job applicants have embellished their skill set, and 33 percent have lied about their academic degree. However, with the help of blockchain, recruiters, headhunters and prospective companies are now able to verify the candidate’s CV and confirm whether the applicant does indeed have a degree, professional qualification and position at a relevant sector company. Therefore, time involved with checking and verifying candidate’s professional and academic history of candidates’ CVs is significantly eliminated.
Even if the institutions that issued the certificates were to close down, or if the entire system of education collapses (as, for instance, happened in Syria), those certificates are still verifiable against the records stored in a blockchain. Furthermore, once institutions issue a certificate, they do not need to spend any further resources to confirm the validity of that certificate to third parties, since blockchain education system will able to verify the certificates directly themselves.
Overall, the future blockchain education system is expected to have wonderful shifts as well as create more opportunities for people all around the world. It is a great promise for future education development and it’s extremely exciting to see where that path leads. However, blockchains is still in its nascent stage and has a long way to go before becoming the second generation of the Internet.
About Article Publisher Infinity Blockchain Labs
Infinity Blockchain Labs is a visionary R&D company engaged in intermediary and RegTech services employing blockchain technology. We focus on forming alliances with established businesses and regulatory institutions across various industries, as well as providing collaborative incubation for early stage blockchain projects.
IBL aspires to empower Vietnam to become a global leader in blockchain development and therefore are committed to sharing information to nurture a passionate, educated blockchain community. One of the ways we maintain our role as ecosystem pioneer is by helping create educated blockchain enthusiasts. We are committed to sharing information and resources to help Vietnam become a blockchain hub through conferences, courses, contests, alliances, workshops, speaking engagements and incubations. Information regarding topics like hard forks helps people become more familiar with key blockchain concepts and thus able to adopt the technology.
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