How is the Education Sector of Israel Affected by Bitcoin?
Bitcoin and other virtual currencies could soon be used to pay for university courses in Israel, as the global digital currency makes slow but steady progress towards mainstream acceptance.
The country’s Council for Higher Education is considering accepting bitcoin payments from international students who enroll in online master’s degree programs, according to a report from http://thecryptogenius.software/.
7 Ways How Bitcoin Benefits the Education Sector of Israel
1. Acceptance of Bitcoin will attract International Students
The number of international students studying in Israel has dropped by 12% since 2012 due to the high costs associated with universities in Israel compared to the rest of the world.
By accepting bitcoin payments, universities are likely to benefit from increased enrollment numbers as it will become an attractive proposition for international students who face a strong US dollar.
2. Simplified payment system that is quick and safe
Bitcoin payments can be processed through a third-party bitcoin service provider, with the funds being converted to the Israeli New Shekel daily for each course. This eliminates exchange rate risks and credit card frauds associated with international students.
3. Opens up new revenue opportunities
Online programs are more cost-effective than traditional courses, and each student pays a higher amount for attending them. Suppose the Council manages to attract a good number of international students. In that case, universities could benefit from a considerable boost in revenues without adding additional burden on their existing infrastructure and staff.
4. Eliminates currency conversion costs
Bitcoin payments eliminate the need to deal with two different currencies and reduce exchange rate risks. In addition, the amount paid by international students in bitcoin will be converted to New Shekels daily transferred directly into the university’s account.
5. Increase in competition among educational institutions
With an increased number of universities accepting bitcoin payments, competition among educational institutions is likely to intensify. This will force local institutes to improve their online presence and offer more services for international students.
6. Grants Digital currency a legal status in Israel
Accepting bitcoin as a mode of payment could bring digital currencies one step closer to being recognized as a formal means of payment in Israel.
However, the Council could specify the number of bitcoin universities can receive, potentially limiting their ability to hold on to their bitcoins instead of converting them into New Shekels.
7. It benefits both students and educational institutions
As international students are required to pay an enrollment fee before enrolling for any course online, bitcoin payments provide a unique opportunity for students to pay from anywhere in the world, as long as they have access to the internet.
As a result, educational institutions benefit from an increased enrollment rate, savings on transaction costs, and lower fraud risks.
4 Negatives of bitcoin affected the education sector of Israel
1. High volatility of bitcoin
The value of bitcoin is constantly on the rise, having increased more than 1,000% since last year. This makes it difficult for universities to predict their future revenue streams, resulting in huge losses if their bitcoins lose value overnight.
2. No legal protection in case of fraud or breach of contract
Educational institutions that accept bitcoin payments must convert their bitcoins into New Shekels daily, which will be transferred directly into the university’s account.
3. Lack of regulation in the bitcoin market
There is no official legal framework to regulate bitcoins in Israel at this point, making it difficult for educational institutions to understand their tax liabilities when holding on to their bitcoins instead of converting them immediately into New Shekels.
4. International opposition
While several universities accept bitcoin payments globally, most are based in the US and Canada. Therefore, there is no standard operating procedure regarding bitcoins amongst these educational institutions could complicate matters for those who wish to pay using bitcoin.
The advantages of accepting cryptocurrency as a medium for payment greatly outweigh the disadvantages, which will only be resolved over time with increased regulation. As of now, it is still too early to predict the future of digital currency in Israel and its education sector.
However, given the positives students and educational institutions gain from integrating cryptocurrencies into their payment system, more educational institutes will likely consider bitcoin payments shortly.