BlockChain — The next Edtech revolution

The global education technology market size was valued at USD 76.4 billion in 2019 and is expected to grow to USD 289.1 Billion at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 18.1% from 2020 to 2027. Digitization is increasingly penetrating the education sector with technologies used to deliver education, skills, and knowledge in new and creative techniques.

Skills, examination scores and grades are the current parameters to judge any student or educational personnel. Any tampering with the records may lead to manipulation and biased results and outcomes. While dealing with such numbers and growth parameters, there is a need of more focused approach towards the authenticity and credibility of such examinations. Any high stake exams assessment that is being impersonated, has undergone hack or has been leaked unethically or unlawfully is a serious misconduct leading to result manipulation.
That is when technologies such as blockchain works wonder. Blockchain makes the entire process decentralized.

Such advancements make blockchain the next big thing in revolutionizing education industry globally.

Most people acknowledge Blockchain with cryptocurrency and bitcoin, but what role can It play in edtech is still being explored. It is a question that has now taken the tech world by storm.

Tech giants, Blockchain and new sheriffs in Global Education.

Blockchain has been globally implemented by tech giants to ensure maximum transparency. A whole set of verifiable credentials (VCs) have been identified to ensure verification by meta data properties associated with each data set. However, such VCs fail to provide descriptions associated with data set, or in other words, justify the authenticity. To be able to perform such data cross verification, standards have been taken into account and implemented. This would ensure that the details pertaining to skills, accomplishments and evidence can be validated easily.

How does Blockchain come into the picture?

The skills required to survive in the cutthroat competition are rapidly changing. The route to those skills is encountering gradual but the same change too.

DCC or Digital Credential Consortium is one such similar effort which is focusing on decentralized, trusted, distributed and shared infrastructure required for issuing and verifying the digital credentials.

Govt of Russia has gone a step ahead and has implemented Blockchain technology to secure university examinations (Unified State Exam) for education quality control. This is a perfect example because the implementation of Blockchain is happening at the source. This enables issuance and verification of evidence-based certificates/diplomas that are cryptographically linked to exam records and candidate responses.

The advent of blockchain in education industry will offer or enable user with following:

●Self sovereignty: User shall be able to maintain and control the management over their personal data
●Trust: The authenticity of data shared is the basic principle behind implementing blockchain
in EdTech. Building such robust system shall enable user to have their confidence through different transactions and issuance of certificates.
●Transparency: The records stored shall be more transparent, secure and immutable.

This solves a big problem for all the key stakeholders of the ecosystem to be able to easily identify and weed out malignant.

Blockchain in Future.

While many of the applications of blockchain technology are yet to be explored, American Council on Education (ACE) research found 71 active efforts internationally in various stages of development, research, and planning regarding blockchain and DLT in education. The education industry within the existing sphere, in near future, will be revolutionized in following ways:

● A less time consuming, paperless, evidence-based system shall be one of the innovations
introduced in near future.
● User shall be able to verify their data and certificates automatically without intervention of third party
● Blockchain and EdTech shall give birth to data management structures where users shall have upgraded ownership and control over data.
● Most importantly, the blockchain based EdTech innovations and technologies shall enable payments within the institutions thereby also reducing accounting costs.

Edtech industry clearly need more credible blockchain solutions that lay the path for revolution and advancement. Such innovations open the floodgates for trust, authenticity and more genuineness among examinations.