One of the finest (and worst) aspects about bitcoin, blockchain, and cryptocurrencies is the fact that the technology and practical applications are still in their infancy. Despite the fact that there have been many early adapters, the ecosystem as a whole requires a lot of study, especially for those attempting to catch up.
This is both a huge opportunity and a potential trap for those on the outside looking in. I like to keep track of different courses in the area for my personal education as well as for resources to share with others in order to involve them in the conversation and learning: I’ve developed this list as a collection of dependable resources to accomplish exactly that.
DFIN 511: Introduction to Digital Currencies (Offered By UNIC)
Andreas Antonopoulos (author of Mastering Bitcoin) and Antonis Polemitis teach this free online course, which is the first course of UNIC’s MSc in Digital Currency program. The course situates bitcoin and cryptocurrencies within the context of the history of money before delving into the actual implementation of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, as well as the changing interaction between digital currencies and financial institutions and the wider world.
To get started, no prior understanding of cryptocurrency is required. At the conclusion, there is a final exam component that assesses your understanding of the subjects presented.
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This simple collection of interactive flashcards is an excellent resource for people looking to quickly learn the fundamentals of cryptocurrencies, from buying and selling to mining. Aside from a modest promotion of Coinbase as safe and regulated, the mini-course remains an objective resource that covers a lot of subjects in a surprisingly intuitive and brief manner. A fantastic resource to share with absolute novices who have limited time and want to get up to speed quickly.
UC Berkeley’s EdX (Bitcoin and Cryptocurrencies) Program
This UC Berkeley EdX course distinguishes itself by including a portion dedicated to the Ethereum Virtual Machine, as well as a segment focused on the game theory of what it would take to attack the Bitcoin blockchain — a novel method to enumerating the system’s potential security flaws.
In an unusual twist, the two teachers were undergraduate students from the Blockchain @ Berkeley group. The course, like other EdX courses, is free to audit and take, but a validated certificate ($99 USD) is required to demonstrate completion.
101 Blackboard Series
This YouTube series focuses on various technical aspects of bitcoin, ranging from the components of private keys to tackling the scalability and centralization problems that are sometimes inherent in the way bitcoin and cryptocurrencies are implemented in practise.
Ethereum (ETH) (Learn Section)
The learning part of the ethereum.org website (the official website for Ethereum) contains a series of free materials selected in great depth regarding Ethereum, the second largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization. It delves into the smart contracts part of Ethereum, as well as the fundamentals, and focuses on information for the most recent upgrades and plans for Ethereum. At the conclusion, there is a part dedicated to criticism and various perspectives on how Ethereum should be doing better, leaving it with a rather well-balanced assortment of knowledge about the ecosystem packaged like a curated course.
Udemy’s (Introduction to Cryptocurrencies and Blockchain)
A free course with around two hours of video on the fundamentals of distributed systems and their significance in the history of money. Perhaps an excellent resource for folks who want to learn at a slower speed than the Coinbase flashcards but don’t want to be fully immersed in different aspects of blockchain and the ecosystem as with the fully-fleshed out courses offered by EdX and Coursera.
It’s a free Udemy course that has been used by over 40,000 other students.
Princeton University’s Coursera (Bitcoin and Cryptocurrency Technologies)
This free Coursera course explains basic cryptography topics before connecting them to the fundamentals of Bitcoin. The course presenter explains how decentralisation is achieved in practise, how Bitcoin mining works, and how Bitcoins are kept through films. Following that, a brief explanation of altcoins and the future of the area is provided.
Princeton University offers the course, and while no degree is awarded for completion, the content and manner in which it is given serves as a valuable introduction to cryptocurrencies and Bitcoin concepts, with an emphasis on Bitcoin security. Arvind Narayanan, the lecturer, is an associate professor of computer science at Princeton who works on the security and stability of Bitcoin, therefore his Coursera course naturally gravitates toward that topic.
You’ll want to learn more about the rest of the Bitcoin ecosystem elsewhere, but this is a good starting point.
The DeveloperWorks (Blockchain Essentials)
This video course, created in collaboration with IBM and taught by two engineers from IBM’s blockchain enablement group, covers the fundamentals of blockchain before leading to a demo and lab component where you can actually interact with and practise with the Hyperledger framework. After completing this course, you will be able to utilise the Hyperledger Composer. While the level is significantly more technical, it is still indicated for beginners, even non-technical ones.
Textbook on Crypto economics
This mini-textbook course, given by Canada’s Ivey Business School (affiliated with the University of Western Ontario), focuses on a crash course on bitcoin within the context of the economic effect and characteristics of bitcoin activities. Consider it a crash course on bitcoin, with a focus on its larger economic effect.