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Following the global financial crisis, cryptocurrencies emerged as a replacement to the fiat as masses lost trust in banks. What made cryptocurrencies gain the trust of people was its underlying technology i.e blockchain. Soon people caught n to the dark side of cryptocurrencies and its high volatility which made them focus on blockchain. It has been a decade since then and blockchain has emerged into a field with limitless possibilities and use cases. The decentralized ledger’s use cases are innumerable owing to the fact that it is secure, immutable, tamper-proof and capable of carrying out transactions at high speed.

The nascent technology is however in its infancy and there is a great deal to be learned about it. There are fewer who hold the knowledge of the technology and even fewer who try to educate others about it. There has long been need of extensive courses in universities and institution which could educate the young ones about it.

Since blockchain reared its head into headlines, more and more institutions have been getting educated about its myriad of use cases and how it could be incorporated into the existing platform to solve real life problems. One of these problem is counterfeiting and faking important documents.

Recently the University of Bahrain made the announcement that it will be allotting digital diplomas to its students that will be linked up on a blockchain. The university has made a partnership with Learning Machine and will be incorporating the Blockcerts open standard to carry out this task.

By using the Blockcert open standard, the University of Bahrain will grant students their diplomas on the blockchain, ensuring that the diplomas are in fact the authentic ones and will make them immutable and tamper proof. All of them will carry a cryptographic sign. The credentials will be allotted to students that will ensure that no one can fake them as they will also be directly shareable with the companies that employ them in the future. University of Bahrain president, Professor Riyad Hamzah told,

We at UOB are delighted to be the trailblazers in using blockchain in the Mena region in order to better serve our students.

The University of Bahrain realize the extent to which blockchain can disrupt the entire ecosystem and holds more value to it that is usually associated with it. Cameron Mirza who is the head of Strategy at the University of Bahrain, made a statement elaborating on how will this inclusion of blockchain technology help their institution. He said,

From the publication of our transformation plan in 2016, we made it clear that as a University we need to embrace disruptive technology in order to improve our organisational effectiveness and to improve the student experience. Through this collaboration with Learning Machine, I am both excited and confident we can accomplish both. The potential of blockchain goes far beyond cryptocurrency and its potential use within education is both fascinating and exciting. This project is a first step into exploring that potential in controlled and collaborative environment.

UOB isn’t the only institution which is issuing diplomas on blockchain, previously MIT has been known to delve in the technology for similar purposes. In 2017, MIT granted blockchain-based certificates to more than 100 graduates. Maltese education sector also took the initiative to grant certification through blockchain technology in the same year.

It would suffice to say that blockchain has the ability to disrupt multiple industries as it makes the data chained to it immutable and tamper proof. In situations where data needs to be permissioned, so that users may choose to selectively display their information and their data is also protected from any intruders.

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