The subject of cryptocurrencies is one that has been subject to much scrutiny over the past decade. The stigma surrounding them has made it difficult for the concept to go mainstream. Some in the worlds of both business and academics, however, see the technology that drives cryptocurrencies as one that is worthy of more attention.
Blockchain technology is an emerging niche that many in the field of IT are beginning to refer to as, “the new Internet” and for a good reason. New uses and applications for the technology are being discovered every day, and these discoveries could potentially become the foundations for college courses and, eventually, majors and degree programs.
Why Study Blockchain Technology?
There is no denying that Blockchain is the future of the Internet. It can help streamline data flow and also revolutionize and simplify the process of securing even very large amounts of data. Does your college or university already offer courses on subjects like Blockchain and cryptocurrency? Have you thought of taking some of these courses but fear you might not have the kind of academic support needed to excel in the field?
The truth is that there are more resources for this area of study than you might think. Professors, tutors, and other academic professionals are already seeing the potential in studying and developing curricula around the technology. Even blogs like this one are poised to help students with topics related to Blockchain and cryptocurrencies.
Applications for Blockchain
The key benefit of blockchain technology is its ability to safely and securely manage large batches of data without making multiple copies that can be manipulated and breached. Instead, one central cache of data is shared in a large – or even global – group of users and administrators. Permissions and other security measures can be easily applied to allow access to specific datasets to specific end users.
In this article, William Mougayar uses the analogy of Google Docs to explain the processes that make a blockchain unique. The concept of collaboration is a significant advantage of the tech. In the past, documents like spreadsheets were sharing between recipients, each of whom would make or request revisions, then forward the altered document to the designated receiver. One would have to wait to receive the altered copy before deciding on further changes.
Google Docs is an excellent example of how a blockchain works. While it is possible to download copies of Google Docs, it is also possible – and recommended – that all parties involved in the development of the document collaborate and work from the same document. This eliminates many of the challenges that are native to more traditional collaborative systems, including breakdowns in communication or miscommunication of objectives.
There are numerous other applications for blockchain just in the areas of security and collaboration.
Regarding academics, blockchain technologies offer opportunities to develop curricula in areas of science, IT infrastructure, economics, and Internet security. With so many viable subject areas, there is little doubt that future degree programs will not only include blockchain as part of the curricula but build entire degree programs around it.
Cryptocurrencies in Education?
Whether cryptocurrency weighs heavily in college certificate and degree programs is contingent on how well it fares in economic markets and how well cryptocurrency in its various forms survives stigmatization and emerges as a viable economic platform going forward. Most leading experts agree that the applications for blockchain technology go far beyond the cryptocurrency markets. That means that future higher education programs will eventually have to develop courses of study around it.