International Journal of Social Policy & Education

ISSN 2689-4998 (print), 2689-5013 (online)

DOI: 10.61494/ijspe

The Place of Emotions in the Higher Education Pedagogical Relationship

Isabel Pimenta Freire, Maria Teresa Estrela, Sara Bahia &José António Reis do Espírito Santo


This article aims to contribute to the understanding of emotions in the pedagogical relationship in Higher Education, within the context of the changes that have occurred in Portugal over recent decades. The empirical study framed in a phenomenological-interpretative perspective, was developed through 12 interviews with university and polytechnic teachers of 4higher education institutions. The findings show that most of the teachers participants have been seeking new forms and styles of pedagogical relationship, given not only the systemic changes resulting from the Bologna Process, but also from the challenges of globalization and the consequent mobility of students and teachers. Most teachers are attentive to students' emotions and derive gratification from the pedagogical relationship they establish with them. They see it as a rebalancing element in their own emotional life in face of the intensification and bureaucratization of work resulting from the dominant higher education mercantilist view in past decades.