India's National Programme on Technology Enhanced Learning (NPTEL) has teamed up with IBM to provide a 12-week online course that will cover blockchain architecture and design as well as various use cases. The course will be available via the NPTEL website starting July 2018, and aims to equip students with the conceptual and practical skills needed in the growing blockchain industry.
Professor Sandip Chakraborty from the Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur and Dr. Praveen Jayachandran of IBM Research, India, co-developed the course. It includes topics such as crypto primitives, consensus, permissioned blockchain, use cases, and research efforts. Jayachandran elaborated on the demand for blockchain education:
"The popularity of blockchain has moved from cryptocurrency to business applications across many industries such as insurance, finance, supply chain logistics, digital identity, healthcare and public sector. IBM's collaboration with India's leading academic minds to create a blockchain curriculum is a reflection of our commitment to enabling the technology to realize its full potential, while also addressing the increased demand for adequate skills for students and developers."
Intended to produce course content for the engineering and science fields, NPTEL is a joint initiative of seven Indian Institute of Technology branches, the Indian Institute of Science, and the Indian Ministry of Human Resource Development. The program disseminates instructional material through web supplements and video courses. Since many Indian students cannot attend a science or technology institute, NPTEL provides an alternative method for individuals to receive a quality education.
India is one of many countries to recently promote blockchain education. The University of California, Berkeley, plans to provide an online blockchain certificate program through the platform edX starting next month. In September 2017, Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov included cryptocurrency education in a statement about an effort to increase financial literacy in the country. Educational institutions have also invested in blockchain technology for other uses, such as the issuance of academic credentials.