Job Conditions and Quality of Education in Brazilian Universities


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We analyze the impacts of recent changes in Brazilian higher education policies on the job conditions of university teachers. We outline a brief study of legislation and the influence of neoliberalism, globalization ,and labor market oriented ideals, which lead to the weakening of higher education system. Then, we focus our attention on a program called Reuni (that was intended to expand the public federal higher education system), and finally present the results of research conducted at one federal university. We interviewed 14 professors, 2 from each nocturne course (6 teacher licensures and 1 bachelor in Social Work). Interviews revealed that the latest educational policies have greatly contributed to democratization of university degrees; however, working conditions didn't accompany this expansion. According to data collected, professors don´t have adequate material conditions for performing their duties; the number of professionals is insufficient for the crescent demands, and labor, legal, and social support aren't appropriate for their needs. This situation leads to several consequences, such as overwork, excessive extra working hours, mental and physical illness, and low quality of tasks realized, especially of education offered to students, once when teachers get to the classroom they are already exhausted.