UPDATED BY
Matthew Urwin | Jul 13, 2022
REVIEWED BY
Omar Bheda | Sep 19, 2022

Will the future of learning take place on the blockchain? The edtech industry has made great strides in recent years, but there is still a long road ahead. Thankfully, technologies like blockchain are helping speed up the process. Ledger tech, along with AI, smartphones and tablets, are rapidly replacing bulky desktop computers and antiquated textbooks as the preferred method of teaching — giving the education industry a much-needed upgrade.

Blockchain Education

Educators use blockchain technology to review transcripts and report cards, complete digital agreements and help students pay off loans.

Blockchain is a benefit to education by increasing transparency, improving accountability through smart contracts and incentivizing learning.

For instance, Blockchain’s immutable ledger technology creates a chronological list of events that have transpired in real time. This is useful for verifying transcripts, diplomas and test scores. In addition, teachers, university administrators and students can use smart contracts to agree about assignment due dates and even deploy student loan payments.  

Plus, it may not be long before academic institutions are able to incentivize students to pay student loans on time and teachers to motivate students by awarding cryptocurrency to those who perform highly or complete a certain major. The gamification aspect of education created by tokenization has been tremendously beneficial.

Although still at an early stage, blockchain in edtech has already been hailed as the “the right technology” to overhaul a system that’s perennially viewed as outdated. Below are nine examples of how blockchain is being implemented in education.

 

Blockchain Education Examples

Top Blockchain Education Companies

  • Gilgamesh
  • Blockcerts
  • APPII
  • ODEM
  • Sony Global Education

Founded: 2022

Location: San Francisco, California

Gilgamesh is a knowledge-sharing platform based on Ethereum smart contracts. As on a social media site, book readers, students and authors can gather together to discuss a novel or other writing. The big difference is they’re awarded GIL Tokens — in other words, incentivized — for engaging with content through sharing, discussing and writing. The tokens can then be used to buy other academic eBooks. The Gilgamesh app also (available only for iOS) features book suggestions, social media feeds and a wallet to store GIL tokens for interacting with other knowledge seekers.

 

Founded: 2016

Location: Cambridge, Massachusetts

Learning Machine teamed up with the MIT Media Lab to create Blockcerts, an open standard platform for creating, issuing and verifying blockchain-backed certificates. By creating records like academic transcripts and credentials on a blockchain, the company can review the credibility of documents and discover falsified information. Academic achievements — grades, transcripts and even diplomas — can also be stored on a Blockcerts blockchain for immutable insight into past academic history.

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Founded: 2016

Location: Fully Remote

APPII combines blockchain, smart contracts and machine learning to verify the academic credentials of prospective students and professors. Users create a profile and fill out their academic CV, including education history and transcripts. APPII then uses blockchain to verify a user’s background and lock their information into its blockchain.

 

Founded: 2017

Location: Fully Remote

ODEM is a decentralized marketplace for educational products and services that connects educators, students and professionals to relevant courses and resources with blockchain technology. Using smart contracts, professors and students agree on specific courses that will help further the students’ education and bolster their professional backgrounds. The ODEM ledger then recognizes each course a student has taken and a professor has taught, which boosts the reputations of both on ODEM’s platform.

 

Founded: 2015

Location: Fully Remote

Sony Global Education, in partnership with IBM, developed a blockchain platform that enables multiple institutions to add individual academic achievements and other pertinent student information on a ledger in order to maintain irrefutable records on students who have transferred or furthered their education. The blockchain helps educational institutions keep a clear digital transcript, ledger of records and payments for each student.

 

Founded: 2014

Location: Fully Remote

The Blockchain Education Network (BEN) is a cohort of students and alumni all over the world focused on blockchain and cryptocurrency initiatives. Started by students at MIT and University of Michigan, BEN has over 4,000 members who share blockchain ideas, build prototypes and launch creations. According to BEN co-founder Jeremy Gardner, cohort-developed companies have a combined worth of more than $11 billion.

 

Founded: 2016

Location: Fully Remote

The Disciplina platform uses blockchain to maintain a unified register of academic achievement and qualifications for universities. The company’s decentralized algorithm automatically assigns a score to someone based on their achievements and qualifications. Universities can use those scores to determine individualized learning plans based on what the student has or hasn’t learned. In addition, the company’s Student App enables students to view their educational history, professor profiles, teaching styles and course offerings.

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Founded: 2003

Location: Scottsdale, Arizona

Parchment offers digital credential services to students, academic institutions and employers. K-12 educators use the company’s blockchain to upload any important developmental progress while higher education institutions use the platform to review academic merit, process applications and produce immutable diplomas. Additionally, students have full-time access to all educational information and can easily share academic achievements with future employers.

 

Founded: 2017

Location: Fully Remote

BitDegree combines blockchain ledgers and tokenization on its tech-focused online education platform. The company offers both free and paid online courses on topics like cryptocurrencies, blockchain implementation and gamified coding to help more people learn about DLT and eventually enter a blockchain-oriented career. The platform also incentivizes learning by offering tokenized scholarships for successful course completion or certain achievements.

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