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APPLICATION OF NON-FUNGIBLE TOKENS (NFT) IN EDUCATION

IN A NUTSHELL, WHAT IS NFT?

Prior to this article on NFT, it is imperative we succinctly define NFT with an understanding of its background and why it is gaining traction as well as its use cases.

A focus on fungibility is paramount in understanding a silent but salient aspect of the blockchain. Anything that is ‘fungible’ clearly implies that it could be replaced by something similar. Therefore, a fungible token is any type of token that can be replaced with something similar. 

NFTs are specifically held on the Ethereum blockchain though supported by other blockchains as well. They are created or minted from digital objects that represents both tangible and intangible items including; Collectibles, Sports highlights, Arts, GIFs, Music, Designer Sneakers and other fashion apparel and even Tweets such as Jack Dorsey’s first ever tweet which was sold as an NFT for more than $2.9 million.

Tokens are pertinent elements in the blockchain ecosystem in entirety and are actually accessible through various platforms and for diverse purposes. Non-Fungible Token (NFT) is a variants of tokens that makes up the blockchain with myriads of unique features.

Non Fungible Tokens (NFTs) are gaining traction and their massive adoption and integration by blockchain companies is apparently opening a world of diverse opportunities for real world and virtual assets with rewards too. NFT use cases are concentrated in sectors such as; Education, Sports, Fashion, Arts and so many others.

USE CASES OF NON-FUNGIBLE TOKEN IN EDUCATION   

Truth is the applications of Non-Fungible Token in real life scenarios is quite unclear to so many people but a closer look and study shows that NFTs really need to be deployed to all sectors. NFTs can showcase the proof of ownership of specific assets on the blockchain and this is owing to the fact that NFTs are unique and interchangeable. NFTs can hold, deny or restrict the rights of individuals on specific assets thereby ensuring exclusivity for the owner. A striking feature of NFTs is their abilities for originality through scarcity of information. 

Recently, Beeple sold an NFT artwork for a whopping $69 million at Christie’s auction thus creating ripples on the blockchain. Sequel to this sale, some other series of collections from the same digital artist was sold for around $3.5 million in total. 

Programmable art is not only the sector where viable use case of NFTs lies. NFTs use cases can also be obtainable in the Education sector simply put an innovative aspect of Educational Technology (EdTech).  

 

NON-FUNGIBLE TOKENS AND EDUCATIONAL TECHNOLOGY

In the Education sector, NFTs can be contributory in certifications and verifying licensing. Course completion certificates for instance degree certificate is given to candidates on completion of their program in digital form. Employers require a replica of the course completion document prior to offering positions to the holder in the organization.

Evidently, NFTs digital certificates formats will save a lot of time as the burden of record checking and verification is evaded entirely. Also, the approach delivers an easier method of storing proof of course completion or licensing.

A rewarding aspect of NFTs in Education entails receiving rewards for learning, managing and trading earnings which summarily describes receiving rewards for e-learning, performing surveys, watching educational videos and resources. This is similar to Coursera, Khan Academy and other online certifications educational platform but in this case, you getting paid for acquiring certificates on various subjects’ areas on the blockchain.

Using a state-of-the-art Artificial Intelligence (A.I) facial recognition software, Educational platforms and startups will be able to monitor students’ engagement and comprehension levels, modifying their learning experience in real-time.

Prior to the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic, remote learning has been on across several part of the world with a widespread adoption. The emergence of NFTs as a disruptive technology in Education is redefining remote learning in so many ways for instance, NFTs can be a useful tool as authenticity for certificates often with unique identifier in academic qualifications.

The smart contract can contain a wealth of metadata such as; a student name, date of certificate acquisition, curriculum covered, degree or certificate awarding body, among others that would help maintain the integrity of an academic award as well as ensure employers trust in the qualifications of the candidate.

To conclude, smart contract’s secured and unique mechanism of operation would be a veritable component in identifying and distinguishing students following details linked to each student embedded on a smart contract.

Although, the NFT could be sold but the associated metadata will still be pointing towards the student who achieved the qualification.  

Whilst the vision of NFTs seems to make practical sense, the technicalities of this still remain challenging. Challenging or not, digital proof of ownership is a problem the connected world needs to solve, and with a robust technology as blockchain as the driving gateway, this direction is very pertinent for innovation and effective problem solving in all sectors.

Written By Michael Kenneth Ugom

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