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Prospects of the emerging developmental university in Brazil

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Abstract:

The idea of the ‘developmental university’ – one in which teaching, research and service are closely tied to economic and social development priorities – has had an enduring influence in countries in Latin America, Africa and Asia since the mid 20th century. Nevertheless, tensions between this model and conceptions of the university as a space for detached critical thought and the quest for truth remain. This study assesses the ways in which four highly innovative cases of universities in Brazil constructed in the developmental mould have responded to these tensions. The four new federal institutions have distinctive foci: 1) the integration of the Amazon region, focusing primarily on environmental issues; 2) Latin American integration, through a multi-national and multi-lingual student and faculty body; 3) cooperation with Portuguese speaking countries, offering opportunities particularly for students from Africa; 4) addressing the needs of the marginalised rural population of the southern border region. This paper presents findings from an initial exploratory study, drawing primarily on documentary analysis. The new universities show significant innovations in relation to curriculum and pedagogy, with a move from traditional disciplines towards addressing the specific development challenges of the region, as well as entry criteria that are more favourable to marginalised populations. The study assesses the prospects of these institutions for reversing the trends of privatisation and the commodification of knowledge, and for enabling wider access to higher education. While significant successes are achieved by these institutions in countering prevailing norms, there remain challenges in relation to entry criteria and concerns for academic standards, the entrenched attachment to disciplinary study and the pressures of economic viability.
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Association:
Name: 55th Annual Conference of the Comparative and International Education Society
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http://www.cies.us


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URL: http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p485890_index.html
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MLA Citation:

McCowan, Tristan. "Prospects of the emerging developmental university in Brazil" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the 55th Annual Conference of the Comparative and International Education Society, Fairmont Le Reine Elizabeth, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, May 01, 2011 <Not Available>. 2014-11-26 <http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p485890_index.html>

APA Citation:

McCowan, T. , 2011-05-01 "Prospects of the emerging developmental university in Brazil" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the 55th Annual Conference of the Comparative and International Education Society, Fairmont Le Reine Elizabeth, Montreal, Quebec, Canada <Not Available>. 2014-11-26 from http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p485890_index.html

Publication Type: Conference Paper/Unpublished Manuscript
Review Method: Peer Reviewed
Abstract: The idea of the ‘developmental university’ – one in which teaching, research and service are closely tied to economic and social development priorities – has had an enduring influence in countries in Latin America, Africa and Asia since the mid 20th century. Nevertheless, tensions between this model and conceptions of the university as a space for detached critical thought and the quest for truth remain. This study assesses the ways in which four highly innovative cases of universities in Brazil constructed in the developmental mould have responded to these tensions. The four new federal institutions have distinctive foci: 1) the integration of the Amazon region, focusing primarily on environmental issues; 2) Latin American integration, through a multi-national and multi-lingual student and faculty body; 3) cooperation with Portuguese speaking countries, offering opportunities particularly for students from Africa; 4) addressing the needs of the marginalised rural population of the southern border region. This paper presents findings from an initial exploratory study, drawing primarily on documentary analysis. The new universities show significant innovations in relation to curriculum and pedagogy, with a move from traditional disciplines towards addressing the specific development challenges of the region, as well as entry criteria that are more favourable to marginalised populations. The study assesses the prospects of these institutions for reversing the trends of privatisation and the commodification of knowledge, and for enabling wider access to higher education. While significant successes are achieved by these institutions in countering prevailing norms, there remain challenges in relation to entry criteria and concerns for academic standards, the entrenched attachment to disciplinary study and the pressures of economic viability.


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Cultural-, Professional-, and Character-Development in Prospective Teachers: Emerging Patterns in Five International Student Teaching Contexts


 
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