Decentralized finance or DeFi has become one of the fastest growing areas in the cryptocurrency ecosystem.data show The total value lock (TVL) of all DeFi agreements is now approximately $130 billion.This is an important indicator because some analysts believe that TVL is one of the best methods Measuring sentiment in the DeFi field.
Although the growth is obvious, many people may still wonder what DeFi is and how it is applied today.Piers Ridyard, CEO of Radix DLT, a secure decentralized network, said that DeFi is currently Only cater to users with sufficient knowledge Crypto market.
With this in mind, it is worth noting that a few universities now offer DeFi-focused courses to help students and the public understand the basics of decentralized systems.
Where can I learn about DeFi
University of California, Berkeley recently Add to A massive open online course (MOOC) on decentralized finance opened in the fall semester of 2021.
Dawn Song, professor of electrical engineering and computer science at the University of California, Berkeley and founder of the blockchain platform Oasis Network, told Cointelegraph that she will help lead the DeFi course with professors from Stanford University and Imperial College London. Song stated that DeFi is becoming a new way to build financial infrastructure, which is why it is important for students from all over the world to understand this topic:
“About 300 students majoring in computer science and finance have signed up for the course, but given the great interest in DeFi, we have also provided a MOOC version open to everyone around the world. In total, more than 1,400 students have signed up for Berkeley’s DeFi courses.”
Song mentioned that the University of California, Berkeley previously offered a shorter and more experimental DeFi course in the spring semester of 2021. She explained that due to the success and interest of the course, the university now offers a full semester course covering the most important concepts in DeFi.
“The first part of the course will introduce smart contacts and blockchain. The second part is the core. We will discuss different DeFi services, including stablecoins, decentralized exchanges, decentralized lending, etc.,” Song said, And further added: “We will also introduce the oracles and privacy protocols in DeFi. These services have proven to be recent topics.”
Song pointed out that due to COVID-19 restrictions, DeFi courses will be completely remote, but the courses for UC Berkeley students and MOOC course participants will be the same. However, she mentioned that Berkeley students will do more coursework, such as completing open classroom projects and gaining practical experience in developing new technologies in the DeFi field. Non-fungible tokens or NFTs will be issued as certificates to those who complete the course.
Although the DeFi course at the University of California at Berkeley may be the first of its kind, it is worth noting that MOOC is open to everyone around the world. “We have students from Europe, India, Asia and other regions outside the United States attend classes,” Song said. Adhering to DeFi’s open and inclusive standards, she added that the goal of Berekely’s DeFi course is to bring online participants and students registered at Berkeley together to create a larger community while improving the technology in the field.
Wyoming is one of the leading states in blockchain innovation, and it is also providing DeFi education to students at the University of Wyoming. Ali Nejadmalayeri, a professor of finance at the University of Wyoming, told Cointelegraph that the university offers blockchain minor courses, and various disciplines in the field can be studied as courses.
For example, Nejadmalayeri teaches the blockchain and financial services course, which is a full-semester online course that includes some DeFi concepts:
“The first part of this course in the spring semester focuses on introducing and reviewing the blockchain field. The second module is about the digital currency field, which includes early experiments on electronic currency and central bank digital currency. DeFi is the last part. We discussed Uniswap and Platforms such as Aave and various applications.”
According to Nejadmalayeri, anyone in the world can participate in blockchain and financial services courses. “If you are admitted as a non-traditional student, then you can take this course,” he explained, adding that about 10 students took this course in the spring semester. But considering people’s interest in DeFi, he expects this number to continue to grow, noting that people with no background in computer science or finance are starting to find DeFi interesting:
“You have people who can code, but DeFi products must cater to specific customers. The internal knowledge of these specific industries is important, so it will be at the forefront of many such courses.”
Although the United States grade According to data from the encrypted intelligence company Chainalysis, as the leading region for adopting DeFi, European universities and schools also offer DeFi courses to promote innovation.
For example, the University of Nicosia (UNIC) in Cyprus is supply Free DeFi MOOC starting on October 11th. George Giaglis, executive director of the UNIC Institute for the Future, told Cointelegraph that although UNIC has provided free introductory courses on encryption and blockchain since 2013, DeFi has only been briefly introduced. However, given the success of the course-the course has attracted more than 45,000 students from different countries-UNIC now offers a six-week online course with a full focus on DeFi.
Giaglis shared that the course curriculum will cover all DeFi basics: “This includes the complete DeFi application stack (decentralized exchanges, automated market making, lending, liquidity mining, income agriculture, decentralized insurance, synthetic assets, Oracles, stablecoins), governance, token economics, DAO.” Although the course is completely free, Giaglis pointed out that for graduates who want to obtain a certificate of completion issued by UNIC that can be verified by the blockchain. That said, you can choose to pay for it.
In addition to UNIC, the European Institute of Technology-which launched in July and owns two blockchain projects-also discussed DeFi in depth.Victoria Gago, the co-CEO of the European Institute of Technology, told Cointelegraph that the blockchain execution plan course and the certified blockchain expert course Include DeFi module by Professor Monica Singer, head of ConsenSys South Africa.
Unlike the other DeFi courses mentioned, Gago believes that these blockchain courses are small and focused-requiring students to pay to join and submit applications for acceptance. Gago elaborated:
“These are real-time, online, queue-based courses starting September 15. Each course will consist of 25 students to ensure that students can interact with professors and their colleagues.”
According to Gago, what is commonly referred to today as decentralized finance will eventually become simple finance in the future, which is why she believes it is necessary to teach courses focused on DeFi: “We hope that students who study these courses can establish An influential network is surrounded by others who study there and contribute to the blockchain industry.”
The challenge of teaching DeFi
It is worth noting that universities have begun to offer DeFi courses, but the fast-paced and developmental nature of the cryptocurrency industry may pose challenges to professors.
For example, it may be problematic to come up with a syllabus that addresses the most relevant topics in DeFi. Nejadmalayeri explained that in the spring semester of 2021, as DeFi began to gain attention, he had to change everything in his blockchain and financial services courses: “I had to cancel many of my lectures and replace them with DeFi concepts. .”
In response to this concern, Giaglis pointed out that with little to rely on, when the industry is changing every day, it can be challenging to formulate a curriculum: “It can be said that we do not consider the material that is finalized at any time: we Changes are being made and will continue to be made to reflect new developments before (and after) each session.”
However, industry participants believe that DeFi courses will continue to exist and will become an indispensable part of future education. For example, Alex Tapscott, author and lecturer of the Coursera Blockchain Revolution Specialization Course, told Cointelegraph that with the development of the DeFi industry, the demand for educational content will increase:
“In the early days of Bitcoin, schools like Cornell and Berkeley started offering courses around this topic. I wouldn’t be surprised if DeFi becomes part of every MBA course in the future. We are still early.”
In addition, Kimberly Grauer, Director of Research at Chainalysis, told Cointelegraph that DeFi courses will become a continuing trend in many universities, and other encryption-related courses may be included: “In this sense, DeFi is a basic building block applicable to a wider range of Course.”