over budget

Plutus Project-Based Learning

$74,500.00 Requested
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Community Review Results (1 reviewers)
Addresses Challenge

10 Week course where participants learn by doing.


Keep Gimbalabs PPBL free for aspiring developers.

Yes Votes:
₳ 37,098,961
No Votes:
₳ 25,374,577
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Gimbalabs is currently piloting a 10-week course where learners work through a series of four mini-projects to learn Plutus via experience. The course is built to co-exist with Plutus Pioneers (PP), and designed so that participants can get started whether they've completed PP or not.

The course emphasizes a learn-by-doing approach by outlining projects for learners to complete and emphasizing potential challenges in the design of Plutus-based dapps.

The course also emphasizes "full-stack" Plutus dapp development. Participants see how to write Plutus code, while also seeing how that code can work in a Javascript-based front-end.

This course is grounded in our philosophy of open collaboration, and participants are encouraged to contribute right away. A "Capstone Project" gives learners the opportunity to work on open-source development. While we do not require learners to "pay it forward", we provide ample opportunity to do so.

Our model also cultivates new leaders. All current facilitators are consciously practicing leveling up their pedagogical strategy and tactics, and at frequent open-coding sessions, we discuss errors and misconceptions in an effort to be ready for whatever challenges new developers might face. Of course an open-source ecosystem requires plenty of great open-source code, but it equally relies upon have well-informed coaches who have "been there", "seen that bug", and who can support developers of different skills levels to find their place. This is why our budget also includes a stipend for four "apprentice facilitators," who will wear their student-hat and teacher-hat in equal measure as we further refine a model for ongoing development of both people and software.

Tools developed for use in the course are currently open-sourced, and can be viewed on Gitlab: https://gitlab.com/gimbalabs/ppbl-course-01

What is for now an evolving front-end React template will be used to create open libraries. In the future, this model of learning while building can be extended to other development frameworks.

We are already delivering this project. The main challenges to its success is accessibility for students and sustainability for course developers and facilitators. As great as it feels to offer a service like this for free, we must now focus on sustainability, and that means providing funding to course developers and facilitators.

Our preference is to keep this course free for learners, and with funding from Project Catalyst, we can do that.


The pilot iteration of this course launched on 14 February 2022, and will conclude on 22 April. After that, we will take 2-3 weeks to reflect before launching the next iteration on 2 May or 9 May 2022.

This project is to fund continued facilitation of the course + keep the course free for future learners.

Five course facilitators x $1000/week x 10 weeks = $50000

Four apprentice facilitators x $250/week x 10 weeks = $10000

Canvas on-boarding & annual subscription fee (to be applied to future iterations of the course): $14500

Total: $74500

Piotr Napierala is experienced in the full stack, with a primary focus on the API tier. His React and React Native experience have also been valuable for projects at Gimbalabs including Joey's Hot Sauce, Password Chaos NFTs, and the Bonfire commercial 1:1 ticket-selling platform, now in mid-alpha. A dedicated contributor, he's also active in Gimbalabs Plutus Project-Based Learning program, acting as teacher's aid and getting practical experience with Haskell and Cardano's native smart-contract DSL.

Frédéric Samvura (Genty): Wada Business Initiatives Lead, DRC Wada Coordinator. M.A in Economics, experienced in banking and public policy. Completed the Plutus Pioneer and Atala Prism Pioneer Programs. Haskell and Plutus trainer in Wada and Gimbalabs Education programs, Smart Contract Developper and entrepreneur. Director at a post-secondary learning institution in Eastern Congo (www.isdrgl.org).

Abdelkrim Dib: Martify co-founder, Gimbalabs contributor and a Cardano dApp developer, fullstack engineer in the fintech industry.

Adrian Huetter: Plutus Pioneer Cohort 1, full-stack blockchain dev, and expert at diagnosing bugs (sometimes with his eyes closed).

James Dunseith: Gimbalabs co-founder, Plutus Pioneer Cohort 1, and educator who thought he'd make a career out of helping teachers to adopt practices that empower students…until he heard about Project Catalyst.

Additional Advisors: Angela Gatende, Steve Lockhart, and Victor Corcino


Key Performance Indicators:

  • Number of people enrolled in PPBL Course
  • % of enrollees who complete the course
  • % of enrollees who contribute to open source Capstone Projects
  • Quality and Utility of Capstone Projects

If this project is successful, there will be more developers prepared to build on Cardano.

James has been steadily working on this project since Fund 1: https://cardano.ideascale.com/c/idea/315962, and Fund 2: https://cardano.ideascale.com/c/idea/322195; and building a dedicated team since Fund 6: https://cardano.ideascale.com/c/idea/369148

SDG Rating

#4 - Quality Education: Too few contemporary education systems put student learning first. Project-based learning provides a viable pathway for rethinking the fundamental goals of education by emphasizing empowerment over compliance.

#8 - Decent Work and Economic Growth + #9 - Industry, Innovation & Infrastructure: This is the opportunity in front of us all, and our intention is to support more people to learn how help build toward these SDG's.

Community Reviews (1)




  • EP2: epoch_length

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  • EP6: pool_deposit

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