Blockchain is such a word that was known only to a very select few years ago. But now majority of the people have heard about it. Even if they just know it is a thing that makes bitcoin work, yet it is better than majority of the people not knowing about it a few years back. Cryptocurrencies are known to be the first widespread application of blockchain technology which is far from the only use for it. But blockchain technology can be applied in many fields including healthcare and education. And that is why, in this article we are going to talk about how blockchain technology can improve the education system.
- Ethiopia and Blockchain Technology
- Using Blockchain in education system
- Final Thoughts
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Ethiopia and Blockchain Technology:
With Blockchain entering the education sector and improving the quality of education, the Ethiopian Minister has confirmed that their government is working with IOHK on blockchain-based system that is used to track student’s performance in the African country’s schools. According to the minister “Getahun Mekuria”, this initiative is going to help improve the quality of education.
This much-touted project is not yet completed and still in its early stages and the company has only started to develop the code for this project. And that is why they don’t expect to launch before January 2022.
Well this initiative has proved that blockchain technology can be used to improve education system. So, let us talk more about how blockchain is being used in our education system.
Using Blockchain in Education System
There are many applications and benefits of blockchain-based ledge technologies that can be used to improve education system. A few of them are mentioned below.
Keeping Students’ Records:
Academic transcripts have proven to be one of the most time-consuming and labor-intensive tasks in the academic institutions today. Each entry has to be verified manually in order to ensure accuracy. With that, there is another kind of student record which is frequently requested, it is the certification of course contents. Let us take a look at an example to explain this. In K-12 education, one condition might happen that a student is in one state and takes a class called “Algebra” and then after a few days she moves to another state where she enrolled herself in a school that also teaches “Algebra”. Now the question is whether both courses share the same content or not? And if you want to verify it then this means you need to compare both course’s content. In K-12, this act can be quite tiring as the complete course content can be of hundreds of pages and if you want to request the record then each page should be signed and stamped. But if all this information was stored on blockchain then all of this would have been just a few clicks away and then a person could obtain a complete and verified record of content courses and academic achievements.
Diplomas and Certificates:
Just like student’s transcripts are stored on a blockchain, their diplomas and credentials can also be issued and stored on blockchain. If students diplomas and credentials are stored on a blockchain then instead of asking the institution emitting the diploma to certify a paper copy, employers would only have to get access to the link to a digital diploma. This can save a lot of time and effort of the management. Also it prevents people from submitting fake degrees to the potential employers which has become quite common now-a-days. In the year 2017, MIT began to issue digital blockchain-stored diplomas to its graduates which allowed them to prevent students from submitting any type of fake degree or credentials.
When we talk about a resume, it doesn’t just contain information about what degree you have and where you got it from. Instead it contains a lot of additional information that can be of great use to the employers while hiring. The additional skills like foreign language, technical knowledge or specific abilities that are not necessarily related to a person’s profession if stored on a blockchain can be easily verified by an expert third party.
The biggest problem that institutes face is storing records, degrees, and other type of information. They not only use a lot of file storage space but also saving everything on local hard drives brings us back to the issue of centralizing files. What if the hard drives are damaged or stolen or compromised in any way would cause a big problem for any institutes. So here a possible solution would be blockchain-based cloud storage services like Filecoin.
Lessons and Storage:
Many blockchains are also found out to be smart-contract capable. Which means that whatever the lessons and courses you like can be programmed into blockchain and then executed automatically when certain conditions are met. To explain this, let us take a look at an example. A teacher has set up different tasks for students. Now the completion of each task can be automatically verified by blockchain’s smart contracts. And when all the tasks are completed, the teachers will receive payment with crypto tokens and students on the other hand would be awarded credits. And this is how all the courses can be laid out like this.
As we all know that majority of the undergrads, grads, teachers, professors, and many researchers are constantly struggling to generate quality material. But where they get stuck is when they have to publish that quality material. Many well-known individual’s worthy research work has been rejected for a variety of reasons by scientific journals. Enrico Fermi’s 1933 paper on weak interactions, Hans Kreb’s 1937 paper was also rejected on the citric acid cycle. Similarly, Rosalyn Yalow’s 1955 research on radioimmunoassay was rejected as well. All these papers later went on to earn Nobel Prizes for their authors. Even though they received prizes for it, yet it was so difficult for them to get it published. But if these all were published on a blockchain then the situation would have been otherwise. Therefore, publishing quality material on blockchain can help new writers, researchers, and others to break into the industry. Plus it also helps with rights management and protection against piracy.
Lower Costs Involved:
Now whatever the applications that we have mentioned above show that many of the time-consuming labor-intensive processes would be automated with blockchain. And thus this leads to lower costs for institutions relevant to file storage space and cutting out middlemen in many activities.
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Blockchain technology can help to improve education system in a variety of ways and some of them are mentioned above. So take a good look at how blockchain can be used to improve education system and never stop learning.
Time to make a decision!