One question we receive frequently is: Why does ODEM use blockchain technology? I’ll begin by telling you a little about blockchain, which is also known as a distributed ledger technology. Think of it like a tamper-proof spreadsheet where information is stored and verified across thousands of computers with no central point of control.
The blockchain is a system of encrypted databases that allows digital information to be shared, but not copied. It provides the foundation for digital currencies that you may have heard of like Bitcoin, Ethereum, and the ODEM Token. The technology enables parties that may or may not know each other to conduct transactions without banks or other traditional intermediaries. This is possible through a process of cryptographic verification.
We chose blockchain technology over conventional alternatives because of the technology’s potential to make education more accessible, affordable, transferable, and verifiable. The blockchain presents a host of opportunities to create a global education marketplace and foster greater collaboration between students, educators, and employers.
The technology also enables the creation and secure storage of educational records and certifications, reducing the potential for academic fraud. Blockchain allows students to “own” their qualifications and easily share them with educators and employers. Academic records can be permanently “chained” to allow the addition of a student’s new achievements over a lifetime of learning.
Blockchain technology also enables the creation of the ODEM Token, a digital currency that “fuels” the ODEM Platform and its smart contracts. These self-executing smart contracts play a central role in administering transactions between students and educators on the Platform.
Stay tuned for more about ODEM and the future of education.