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ID 31441
file
title alternative
Higher Education in Latin America : its transformation and reform agenda
creator
Saito, Yasuo
NDC
Education
abstract
Latin America has a long tradition in higher education that is derived from the colonial universities. The Spanish conquerors were concerned with educating individuals who would govern the colonial state and the Catholic Church. They funded many colonial universities in their colonial domains. After independence at the beginning of the 19th century, the majority of universities was transformed into the national universities in each country. The basic objective of these universities was the production of graduates qualified in professional fields. Traditionally, these included law, medicine, engineering and humanities. Until the first part of the 20th century, the basic pattern of the Latin American universities remained much the same as had existed some centuries ago. A reform movement that erupted in a rebellion in the University of Cordoba, Argentina in 1918 had proclaimed a series of reforms for their old-fashioned universities. The Cordoba reform movement had a lasting impact on the structure and orientation of the universities in this region.

In the 1960s and 1970s, as in other regions in the world, Latin American higher education went through a period of extraordinary quantitative expansion and some changes in their policies. While in some countries such as Brazil, the private sector grew significantly to fill the gaps between demand and supply, in other countries, notably Mexico and Argentina, their central national universities opened their gates and transformed themselves into huge institutions. In the 1980s Latin America experienced serious economic crises and education budgets were compressed. Since in many of the countries higher education was heavily dependent on government funding, it suffered terrible confusion from the impact of the economic crisis. Higher education policies following the lines of neo-liberal doctrine were introduced. Privatization and marketization are now having a major impact throughout the higher education of this region. In these processes, both the institutional composition and the financing of higher education underwent dramatic changes. The structure and orientation of the higher education system has been greatly transformed.

In the 1990s, in face of the globalization context, to which Latin American societies are deeply committed, higher education is faced with new challenges. There is a broad consensus that higher education has the utmost importance for the achievement of a new strategy of economic and social development. Governments and the national systems of higher education seek out new models for their relationships. Governments are called to change their attitudes to the higher education systems from a minimal non-interventionist approach to a more proactive one. The Regional Conference on Policies and Strategies for the Transformation of Higher Education in Latin America and the Caribbean, held in Havana, Cuba, in November 1996 was a landmark for reappraisal of the role and mission of higher education and for redefinition of policies and guidelines for it.
journal title
Daigaku ronshu: Research in higher education
issue
Issue 42
start page
177
end page
193
date of issued
2011-03
publisher
広島大学高等教育研究開発センター
issn
0302-0142
ncid
SelfDOI
language
jpn
nii type
Departmental Bulletin Paper
HU type
Departmental Bulletin Papers
DCMI type
text
format
application/pdf
text version
publisher
rights
Copyright (c) 2011 Author(s)
department
Research Institute for Higher Education
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