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A Framework for Understanding the Affordances of Using Blockchain to Support Lifelong Learning Systems(PDF)


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A Framework for Understanding the Affordances of Using Blockchain to Support Lifelong Learning Systems
Tore Hoel Li Yuan and Mengying Cao
Oslo Metropolitan University Beijing Normal University Shanghai Open Univeristy
lifelong learning blockchain distributed ledger technology
How can blockchain support global lifelong learning, defined as the self- motivated and voluntary ongoing pursuit of knowledge for either personal or professional reasons? Interjecting a technology-supported learning offering between the global and the self, and between the personal and the professional, poses complex design challenges that keep changing with every new technological breakthrough. To understand what blockchain has to offer global lifelong learning, this paper develops a conceptual framework to explain the essence of distributed ledger technology (blockchain) in education. The main properties of the technology may be described as self-sovereignty, trust, transparency, immutability, disintermediation, and collaboration. In this paper we see how these properties can be exploited by new technologies and analyze how global lifelong learning would benefit. The paper builds on desk research and a collection of use cases in the context of the International Organization for Standardization’s ad hoc group on blockchain in education. An analysis of recent reports shows that the issuance of certificates and digital signatures is the application area that has received the most attention when discussing blockchain. However, other fields of importance to global lifelong learning may as well be supported, such as identity management, intellectual property management, courseware design, analysis of learning processes (learning analytics), etc. This paper will contribute to an overview of application domains and help educational strategists in developing a coherent picture of the benefits and pitfalls of blockchain in education.




Last Update: 2021-02-08