It’s possible that the first Ph.D. program in blockchain technology or virtual currency will launch sooner than you think it will. Since interest in virtual currencies and the underlying technology has been growing steadily over the past few years and is now reaching a level where it can be considered mainstream, academic institutions worldwide are beginning to offer classes in relevant subjects.
According to a recent analysis published by MarketWatch, nearly half of the top 50 institutions in the world, as ranked by U.S. News & World Report, are presently offering courses related to cryptocurrencies or blockchain technology. This should not come as a surprise given that almost one-fourth of college students are considering enrolling in a class focusing on blockchain technology or cryptocurrency.
The Most Boring Class to the Most Interesting
Aleh Tsyvinski, an economics professor at Yale University, said that all his students want to hear about these days is cryptocurrency. He also said that his Introductory Macroeconomics class had “gone from the most boring class to the most interesting class.”
When it comes to colleges and universities in the U.S., Stanford University has already made a name for itself as a hub for bitcoin classes. There are now a total of ten different classes at the university that are all about blockchain technology and digital currencies. Cornell University has nine of these kinds of classes, but the University of Pennsylvania only has six of them right now. Students at the National University of Singapore, the University of Edinburgh, the University of Copenhagen, and ETH Zurich can all take classes that are similar to those at other universities around the world.
Part of a Larger Shift
Because more and more students are interested in cryptocurrency and blockchain technology, more and more colleges are teaching about it. According to a survey done by Coinbase, about 20% of undergraduate students currently have cryptocurrency holdings. But this change in the courses being offered is also a sign of a bigger change that is happening at many universities.
Academic institutions are opening new research centers and putting more money into the study of digital currencies, which is a growing field. These new services can try to shed light on a field that is often misunderstood, especially since bitcoin, blockchain, and other important parts of the field are still controversial.
Even though the value of digital currencies like bitcoin has dropped by at least 60 percent from its all-time high at the end of 2017, there has been an increase in the number of students around the world who want to take classes on cryptocurrencies. Campbell Harvey, a professor of international business at Duke University, thinks that there are still a lot of signs that cryptocurrency “is a field with the potential to have wide-ranging effects,” both inside and outside of the classroom. He thinks this is true for both of the reasons given above.
Techinblog and the author do not suggest investing in cryptocurrencies or Initial Coin Offerings (“ICOs”). Before making any financial decisions, consult a specialist. Techinblog does not guarantee its correctness or timeliness. The author owns bitcoin and ripple as of this writing.