Archives for the month of: April, 2016

I have been following the bitcoin evolution with some curiosity but without really looking at the underlying technology being used.

Having been involved in the Open Badges for Higher Education WG, I follow Carla Casilli posts to check what is happening with open badges, namely the launch of @badgechain. Being currently involved in a project to support Syrian refugees to attend online accredited courses and MOOCs, in Jordan, I became less active and more of a practitioner looking at ways to use them to support the engagement and motivation of these students, who have been sometimes through traumatizing experiences.

Today, while reading one of Carla’s posts, she directed to W. Ian O’Byrneexcellent post What is blockchain? and to ethereum.

Ethereum moves blockchain technology from a financial application (bitcoin) to contracts (I am new at this so please bear with me), and this shift suddenly made all the sense to me and to its huge, even life saving application in higher education in emergency contexts.

One of the main problems faced by Syrian students who wish to enroll in higher education or who attended higher education is to be able to produce their certificates of high school completion and/or attendance of university. In order to obtain these certificates, they need to return to Syria, at great rick of being caught, even killed and paying enormous sums to be able to obtain them. Without these precious documents, they are simply not allowed to enroll and pursue their education most of the times.

Blockchain technology with its peer2peer network and distributed database, time and date stamped blocks may have an enormous potential to allow these students (and mobile students around the world), or the higher education institutions where they wish to enroll, wherever they are, to be able to access the certificates, authenticated to be used as proof of their education, becoming sometimes even a life saving instrument…

Now, I will let the experts talk. Does this make sense? Is it possible from a technological perspective?

Getting the Ministries of Education and Higher Education Institutions to move with this, it is another story…

First published in


Horizon 2020 Open Access guidelines. Thanks for sharing, Veronica.


Open Wires

Created by Libby Levi for

This topic I experienced that our PBL group has a lot of own experience to share with the rest of the group and that´s real interesting to take part of and to have a more “direct” use in. But I also yhink, as the scenario tells us, many people are afraid of use and share and publish, and get a feeling of loneliness with this, while they give up. That´s a sad situation. Cause using these sources of OER has so many potentials, benefits like saving money, a shared possibility to develop new and productive ideas, get a lots of help from each other, teamwork and collaborating, you have to communicate in any kind of way, I think it’s a good way to get a picture of how creative the learners are and how much the collaborate and help each other, the “classroom is…

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