France to have Digital Database for Degree Qualifications

Najat Vallaud-Belkacem assumed the charge of education ministry in year 2014 and since then, several revolutionary attempts have been made by her change the education system in he country. In a whole new attempt to counter the forgery cases of degrees, Ms Najat announced that a digital database for all degree qualifications will be created soon.

french education minister najat vallaud-belkacem
Najat Vallaud-Belkacem, Minister for Education, Higher Education and Research, France. Image – TheGuardian

Ms Najat attended the Bett Show in London on January 21 where she spoke on the topic ‘Finding today the answers for tomorrow : the French global plan for e-education’ where she emphasized on the idea of mixing the digital learning concept into the French education model. Bett is an international trade show for digital technology in education, where several international figures and experts share their views and ideas.

Along with describing the French Digital Plan for Education, Najat also announced the plans to create a unique digital database for degree qualifications.

The operation of the digital database will surely ease the hectic process by which degree holders currently have to go. And it will further save enormous amount of time that burns out in verifying job candidates’ academic qualifications to employers.

As per the current regulations, a degree holder is issued his/her official degree certificate on watermarked paper only once and after that, one can only apply for proof of the qualification. Official statistics revealed that around 80,000 requests are received every year for the proof of qualifications which costs a huge amount of money as well as time. So, with the introduction of digital database, the process will save both the factors. Apart from providing the proof of qualifications, the database will further guarantee the authenticity of the degrees.

Announcing the introduction of digital database, Najat said, “We’re continuing to digitally modernize the way the ministry is run. As such, we’re launching a digital service unique in Europe: one which certifies any French higher education qualification, and this will be up and running at some point in 2016.” She also mentioned that the innovation should not ‘end on the ministry’s doorstep’ and rather it should be extended across the boundaries for the benefit of pupils.

As per the sources, in its first phase, the database will hold data on 500,000 higher education qualifications and 1.6 million from secondary level to be issued at the end of the academic session 2016-17. The database is then expected to collect data from the past 15 years, which would cover approximately 25 million qualifications.

The digital database will also the degree holders to pass on their qualifications data to respective employers in much secure and authentic digital form.

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