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How the Blockchain can shape the future of education

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Workshop presentation at JTEL Summer School 2019 in Bari, Italy.

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How the Blockchain can shape the future of education

  1. 1. How the Blockchain can shape the future of education Dr. Alexander Mikroyannidis The Open University, UK
  2. 2. Agenda • Introduction • Group activity • Discussion • Closing
  3. 3. Motivation The centralised education model is no longer sustainable: – Learning happens increasingly outside the brick-and-mortar lecture halls of schools, colleges, and universities on online platforms, within communities of like-minded individuals, or by contributing to projects and initiatives in the real-world. – Learning is far more international than it used to be: key education players open campuses abroad, while students travel to different countries to improve their employability prospects. – In the networked, digitally empowered world of the 21st century, education providers often do not have remit or the means and capacity to cover the range of activities learners engage with, which attest their achievements, knowledge, and skills.
  4. 4. Vision We envision an education model in which the awarding and validation of qualifications no longer occur exclusively under the management of an education institution or an employer. Individual students, teachers, and peers take more ownership of the learning experience and its outcomes without compromising on safety, security, and accessibility.
  5. 5. Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o0FBQMQ0l8U What is a blockchain?
  6. 6. Scenario #1: Educational reputation • Transactions of educational reputation rather than money. • An amount of reputation is assigned to institutions and individuals, based on their status. This could be related to their standing in international league tables or to significant achievements. • They can then award small amounts of this reputational currency to students who graduate, or colleagues whose work they value. • The record is public, so anyone can see how a person gained educational reputation, and the rules for adding new value are agreed by consensus.
  7. 7. Movies available at: http://blockchain.open.ac.uk Prototype demo
  8. 8. Scenario #2: Personalised recommendations • Lifelong learners earn Smart Badges stored on the Blockchain, thus ensuring the validity of the awarded accreditation and eliminating the risk of fabricated qualifications. • Smart Badges include data about the key skills that learners have acquired. • Learners receive personalised recommendations about job offers that match their skills. They also receive recommendations about what to study next. Lifelong Learner Educational Institution Smart Badge Course recommendation Job recommendation Studies Receives Receives Receives Offers Awards Personal ePortfolio Online course Mikroyannidis, A., Domingue, J., Bachler, M. and Quick, K. (2018) Smart Blockchain Badges for Data Science Education, IEEE Frontiers in Education Conference (FIE), San Jose, California, USA, IEEE Education Society Publications.
  9. 9. Prototype demo Movies available at: http://blockchain.open.ac.uk
  10. 10. Questions?
  11. 11. Group activity Build your learning scenario: http://bit.ly/Blockchain-JTELSS19
  12. 12. Next steps • We are currently implementing the core components of this ecosystem, using the Ethereum blockchain platform. • We are also working on learning scenarios and applications on real-life educational platforms, for example by developing a Moodle plugin for blockchain badges.
  13. 13. QualiChain • New H2020 project (started January 2019) • Decentralised Verification and Management of Qualifications for: – Learner Empowerment – Education Reengineering – Public Sector Transformation
  14. 14. blockchain.open.ac.uk qualichain-project.eu Thank you for your participation!

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