Remember Doogie Howser M.D.? The show about a 14-year old licensed doctor in America. He never had to bother about proving the authenticity of his abilities to college administration, since his certificates were authentic and true.
Although that was just a fictional character, child prodigies in the real world face a rather daunting situation. They must provide additional material apart from their certificates.
Real World Education Vs. Doogie Houser
For example, a real-life child prodigy Sho Yano got his MD at 21 years of age. Apart from good natured teen ribbing about over-achieving, he was flummoxed by the amount of paper trail he had to tag along for admissions and other administrative purposes. Another individual named Balamurali Ambati became an MD of Ophthalmology at 17 years of age. He even holds a Guinness Record for the same. With 14 Certifications & Licensure to his name apart from his degrees, imagine the amounts of legal documents he needs to carry to prove his authenticity!
While these examples may swing more towards the extreme end of things, we’re sure that we too have had our fair share of troubles when it comes to proving our educational qualification. Up to 65% of students of average school going age bracket, who seek higher admission in colleges have fake degrees or have ‘Misplaced’ their papers. As education is becoming more diversified and decentralized, there is still a need to maintain the reputation of educational institutes, trust in its certification, and proof of our learning.
Could Blockchain Be A Possible Solution?
Blockchain Technology and its infinite implementations, is coming to the rescue in the Academic Sector. As a decentralized database, it offers an effective, transparent and secure means of administration transaction.
Need a degree in 4 years? Just be part of your college grid while you gain your education. Transferring into a new college with a GED in hand? Welcome, all your information is already on the Block.
While this seems more on the lines of ‘Big-Brother Watching’, Blockchain is ideal in regards of uploading all your educational background on one Node. This Node is a part of one block, which is your school/college you have attended. This Digital Identity on Blockchain contains all the information of your educational journey.
Blockchain is not limited to just holding your data secure, it can also be implemented in the following.
- A Decentralized Education system shall cater to students by creating an open university which can provide learning opportunities to all. They can select their course modules, access notes that are offered and even appear for examinations from the comfort of their homes.
- With Students who move base across border or are refugees and have lost all paper information of their degrees, blockchain education can create a uniform examination level. (similar to a GED) this shall help them in securing a place for higher education once they clear this test.
- Vocational education is now very important to students. Apart from courses provided in their syllabus, many try spending their summers with Apprenticeships in different divisions and with different individuals. Blockchain can process the entire session and generate certifications for the same. This shall motivate students to get hands on knowledge and for institutes/companies to hire more trainees.
While we can mention many more ways in which we can utilize blockchain, trailblazers have stayed a step ahead of the pack and are reaping benefits of blockchain.
Adoption by Big Brands
Sony has collaborated with IBM and created a new Blockchain based educational platform. Sony Global Education is a subsidiary of Sony Limited. They hope to launch this platform to the public by March 2018. The functionality of this platform remains data-sharing along with providing an exhaustive number of educational options to the students.
In recent times, The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) has found a rather unique manner of merging Blockchain in one of its core functions. They have decided to present 100 students with digital degrees. This tamper-proof and verifiable certificate can easily be shared with the future employers of the students. Talk about practicality!
As a budding new technology which is trying to overthrow the label of all things cryptocurrency, Blockchain seems set on becoming successful in shattering the mold. We can only hope this shall help all knowledge hungry students to reap its benefits.