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Education In Crisis: Blockchain To The Rescue?




It seems as though there is nothing too big for blockchain to handle. The revolutionary technology which started as simply the underlying programming of Bitcoin has opened the door to innovators, investors, engineers, and humanitarians who see its potential. Whether it’s the uses in healthcare and real estate or gaming and wellness, blockchain is for more than just day-trading.

One arena where blockchain is proving to be an asset for good is education. Blockchain has a lot of features to offer students. It’s free, open-source, and tamper-evident. In traditional currency exchange, this means transactions are public and immutable and made easily accessible no matter how far back one wants to look. With education, this means that students, teachers, and every level of the education ladder are given power over what belongs to them. Credentials, transcripts, grade reports, responses to assignments, lesson plans―all this and more are available on the blockchain and protected from unauthorized access.

The blockchain requires users to maintain a private and public key. This provides them sole access to their personal documents and credentials and gives them sole power to share these items with prospective schools, employers, and other entities without going through a third party or risking the unauthorized access of a middleman.

The benefits of putting education on the blockchain are both global and domestic. For American students, the blockchain addresses many common concerns when it comes to getting an education. Rising student loan debt and tuition, discrimination by private schools, and falling degree completion rates are plaguing young professionals and students trying to succeed. In foreign countries, such as Syria, many students come here often seeking asylum and opportunity but have lost the ability to prove who they are, let alone their education level. This leads to wider systemic issues and makes it more difficult for these people to succeed here or return home and help contribute to their country’s revitalization.

Blockchain changes education for all through several different levels. First, it uses massive open online courses, or MOOCs, that award students with cryptocurrency in the form of knowledge and experiential tokens that employers and higher education admissions officers can see. Then, it awards teachers, experts, and high-performing students with cryptocurrency for sharing content, including research papers or guides for helping others. Finally, a large adoption of blockchain-based education initiatives can build a borderless global learning community. Through such a system, individual learners can engage with other classes and teachers and content from across time zones and immeasurable distances and even grade levels.

Blockchain will not stop wars from happening or be the perfect solution to everything society faces. But, it is proving itself useful in the problematic situations many students face. By offering payment of tuition, loan tracking, educational record-keeping, and a host of other quintessential storage capabilities, all while putting the keys to knowledge and power in the hands of the student, blockchain is making the world a more educated and equitable place.

Learn more about blockchain and education with the infographic below.


Brian Wallace is the Founder and President of NowSourcing, an industry leading infographic design agency , based in Louisville, KY and Cincinnati, OH which works with companies that range from startups to Fortune 500s. Brian also runs #LinkedInLocal events nationwide, hosts the Next Action Podcast, and has been named a Google Small Business Advisor for 2016-present and joined the SXSW Advisory Board in 2019. Follow Brian Wallace on LinkedIn as well as Twitter.