Distributed Ledger in Education: UCSI Explores

Nurul Zamrè

August 11, 2020

Asia Blockchain Review had the opportunity to chat with the director of Institute of Computer Science and Digital Innovations (ICSDI) at University College Sedaya International (UCSI) on the whole digital transformation and distributed ledger tech for the education sector.

“Essentially, we can think of Blockchain as a distributed ledger that provides information to be recorded and shared in any community where it can take in the form of $ (currency), contracts, assets, bitcoins and anything that can be transferred.” said Kuru Ratnavelu, the Director of ICSDI.

Wide Application

From digital signatures and certificates, assets transactions and smart contracts were also part of the conversation being discussed in the application segmentation. Although it is not directly utilized at one time in the education sector, specifically in the administration or teaching equipment, Kuru said it is easy to see the various aspects of how Blockchain can be applied and handled in the institution industry of all levels.

 

Some examples that were mentioned was;-

  1. Award of Qualifications
  2. Management of staffs and student records
  3. Financial Tracking
  4. Internet Protocol (IP) & Research Management
  5. Licensing and Accreditation

“It is efficient and replaces paperwork, as well as reducing manual verification processes.” added Kuru. Moreover, the management of documents can be properly done with fraud to be prevented and eliminated. Reports have shown that the Ministry of Education in the government of Malaysia in 2019 has introduced a digital blockchain platform to tackle the usage of counterfeit educational certificates.

The schematic diagram of how Blockchain is implemented is from applying digital signatures when transactions are initiated, broadcasting transactions in the form of “nodes”, which eventually is validated and blocks to consensus the protocols being used. As a new block appears, a chain is being attached to track every single change and transaction.

Former Education Minister, Dr. Maszlee Malik stated that there are people who took advantage of the Malaysian public universities’ reputation by displaying counterfeit certificates. “The application of Blockchain can change this situation as a whole.”

Critical Aspect of Digitization

To name a few trends of the future technology being utilized wholly in the system, Kuru said that by being able to track, and verify every single step of the way, the whole institution can automate the recognition and transfer of credits on one platform.

In the long run, the application would include Artificial Intelligence (AI), Virtual Reality (VR), digital devices and learning spaces to gamification. Despite jumping into the bandwagon and adopting digital trends and transformation in the educational industry, one shall consider the whole paradigm for the technology to move toward a team-based approach. 

“As students expectations increase, responsiveness to those needs must increase as well.” attests Kuru. In the scenarios of education as a huge evidence, Kuru further simplified that it can meet certain quality criteria and become the accreditation body being authorized to issue certificates and a learning process by a learner.

To sum up, it was concluded that any organization or individual must own the ledger to monitor the whole process. In fact, the procedures or conditions to overly record the transactions, time stamping, checking the accuracy of the controlled transactions, modification to even terminating the ledger. 

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About the author
Nurul Zamrè

Senior Content Writer

Nurul Zamrè is an ardent writer for the past 15 years of her living tenure on science & technology, agriculture, health, communities, management and more. She is also a News Anchor at RTM, a general manager of AHVN, a model, VO artist, emcee, gymnast, ballerina and a lover of everything chocolates.

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