Nicosia University Issues Students With Blockchain-Validated Grading Certificates

Blockchain, News

Another batch of students received their blockchain-verified grading certificates from the University of Nicosia on May 30, 2018. Students that obtained the required grade for the Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) DFIN-511: Introduction to Digital Currencies were emailed their certificates in PDF format. The documents are encrypted with data which allows prospective employees to authenticate them on the blockchain.

Almost 7,000 students from across the globe enrolled on the course, which is held twice a year and the University welcomes students of all ages to undertake the 12-week, online, course. 13-year-old Julius Struijk was the youngest graduate from the Spring 2018 course. He received his certificate of accomplishment a week before most students as he called into the MScDigital offices. The blockchain validation can be tested by downloading a graduate’s certificate from the University’s Google Drive site.

The bottom of the certificate states:

This is a unique Digital Certificate that is timestamped into the Bitcoin blockchain. Detailed instructions of the process followed, and how to verify it can be found at https://digitalcurrency.unic.ac.cy/free-introductory-mooc/self-verifiable-certificates-on-the-bitcoin-blockchain/ or as otherwise distributed by the University of Nicosia. The OP_RETURN output of the Bitcoin transaction originating from address 1A94iDxxJijPvo8CjCWe4GLUfT6BGTWuUq, which this certificate is part of, will include string “UNicDC”. The University of Nicosia, has authenticated this individual’s participation in the course and everyone presented with this digital certificate should be able to verify its authenticity on their own, without the need to trust the person that presented it, just by going to the link above, and doing a self-contained validation.

Once you have the certificate in PDF format, it can be verified by uploading it to the Universities’ validator or by using a local copy of their GitHub repository.

The validator confirms the authenticity and provides the blockchain transaction ID of a3adb00533a27a1993faa539beb5a5e64f1d56a4893b43169682ce68b615001d. As stated on the certificate the blockchain transaction includes the text “UNicDC” which can be seen with a blockchain explorer such as blockchain.info. The whole process of validating the certificate can be completed within a few minutes compared with up to several weeks for standard University grading certificates.

The course tutors are Antonis Polemitis and Bitcoin aficionado Andreas Antonopoulos. Enrolment for MOOC 10, starting late Summer 2018, is now open and students can register for the free course on the University’s website. Details of the course content were covered in an earlier article published by Crypto Disrupt.

Financial analyst, smartphone app designer, technical writer, and crypto enthusiast. Blockchain verified graduate of MOOC 9, DFIN-511: Introduction to Digital Currencies, run by the University of Nicosia.

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