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  Partner: UNT Libraries
 Decade: 2010-2019
 Collection: UNT Theses and Dissertations
Automated Treetop Detection and Tree Crown Identification Using Discrete-return Lidar Data
Accurate estimates of tree and forest biomass are essential for a wide range of applications. Automated treetop detection and tree crown discrimination using LiDAR data can greatly facilitate forest biomass estimation. Previous work has focused on homogenous or single-species forests, while few studies have focused on mixed forests. In this study, a new method for treetop detection is proposed in which the treetop is the cluster center of selected points rather than the highest point. Based on treetop detection, tree crowns are discriminated through comparison of three-dimensional shape signatures. The methods are first tested using simulated LiDAR point clouds for trees, and then applied to real LiDAR data from the Soquel Demonstration State Forest, California, USA. Results from both simulated and real LiDAR data show that the proposed method has great potential for effective detection of treetops and discrimination of tree crowns. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc271858/
Automatic Extraction of Highlights from a Baseball Video Using HMM and MPEG-7 Descriptors
In today’s fast paced world, as the number of stations of television programming offered is increasing rapidly, time accessible to watch them remains same or decreasing. Sports videos are typically lengthy and they appeal to a massive crowd. Though sports video is lengthy, most of the viewer’s desire to watch specific segments of the video which are fascinating, like a home-run in a baseball or goal in soccer i.e., users prefer to watch highlights to save time. When associated to the entire span of the video, these segments form only a minor share. Hence these videos need to be summarized for effective presentation and data management. This thesis explores the ability to extract highlights automatically using MPEG-7 features and hidden Markov model (HMM), so that viewing time can be reduced. Video is first segmented into scene shots, in which the detection of the shot is the fundamental task. After the video is segmented into shots, extraction of key frames allows a suitable representation of the whole shot. Feature extraction is crucial processing step in the classification, video indexing and retrieval system. Frame features such as color, motion, texture, edges are extracted from the key frames. A baseball highlight contains certain types of scene shots and these shots follow a particular transition pattern. The shots are classified as close-up, out-field, base and audience. I first try to identify the type of the shot using low level features extracted from the key frames of each shot. For the identification of the highlight I use the hidden Markov model using the transition pattern of the shots in time domain. Experimental results suggest that with reasonable accuracy highlights can be extracted from the video. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc103388/
Automatic Tagging of Communication Data
Globally distributed software teams are widespread throughout industry. But finding reliable methods that can properly assess a team's activities is a real challenge. Methods such as surveys and manual coding of activities are too time consuming and are often unreliable. Recent advances in information retrieval and linguistics, however, suggest that automated and/or semi-automated text classification algorithms could be an effective way of finding differences in the communication patterns among individuals and groups. Communication among group members is frequent and generates a significant amount of data. Thus having a web-based tool that can automatically analyze the communication patterns among global software teams could lead to a better understanding of group performance. The goal of this thesis, therefore, is to compare automatic and semi-automatic measures of communication and evaluate their effectiveness in classifying different types of group activities that occur within a global software development project. In order to achieve this goal, we developed a web-based component that can be used to help clean and classify communication activities. The component was then used to compare different automated text classification techniques on various group activities to determine their effectiveness in correctly classifying data from a global software development team project. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149611/
The Avatar by Steve Rouse: A Performance Practice Guide
The Avatar for trumpet and piano by Dr. Steve Rouse is one of the most challenging compositions in the trumpet repertoire. Due to The Avatar's challenges and increasing popularity, a study is necessary to aid its performance. Each movement is performed on a different instrument: Bb piccolo (with an optional A piccolo part) for Nativity, Bb Flugelhorn for Enigma-Release and Bb trumpet for Rebirth. In addition, the performer must convey one of the work's possible programmatic meanings: (1) The Hindu belief of an Avatar and its life cycle, (2) the life of Christ or (3) the human lifecycle. Chapter 1 gives historical information about the work. Chapters 2-4 discuss each movement of The Avatar programmatically and pedagogically. Facets of each movement are analyzed including differences in programmatic choices, rehearsal techniques and sound concepts. Chapter 5 provides recording suggestions, including choosing a recording engineer, preparing and planning for a recording section, choosing a venue and the benefits of hiring a tonmeister. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc31541/
Back in My Hands: the Role of Self-forgiveness and Stigma in Hiv-positive Adults
While advancements in treatment have made HIV a more manageable disease, only recently have psychosocial variables associated with the health of persons living with HIV (PLH) began to receive increased scrutiny. HIV-related stigma, considered by some researchers to be a “second epidemic,” is one such psychosocial variable and is associated with negative physiological and psychological health outcomes. In an effort to alleviate the effects of stress, increased research attention has focused on forgiveness as a teachable coping strategy. Current forgiveness interventions demonstrate encouraging results in decreasing anger and neutralizing stress but have not been applied to HIV-positive populations. In this study, Lazarus and Folkman’s transactional model of stress and coping (1984) and Prochaska and Velicer’s transtheoretical model of health behavior (1997) were utilized as theoretical frameworks to inform a randomized clinical trial that examines coping skills, particularly forgiveness, in PLH and perceived HIV-related stigma. An ethnically diverse sample of HIV-positive adults (n = 57) was randomized into a treatment or control group. The treatment group participated in six weeks of cognitive-behavioral group therapy that focused on the teaching of forgiveness as an effective coping tool while the control group was psychoeducational in nature and did not involve mention of forgiveness. Data was obtained on a variety of medical and psychosocial variables, including types of forgiveness (dispositional forgiveness, forgiveness of self, forgiveness of others, and forgiveness of situations) and perceived HIV-related stigma. Data were collected at three time points: at baseline (Time 1) prior to randomization of participants to the treatment or control group, immediately post intervention (Time 2), and at six-month follow-up (Time 3). Importantly, forgiveness was shown to be a teachable skill that PLH can use to potentially improve mental health. Men in the treatment group reported significantly higher levels of dispositional forgiveness and self-forgiveness than men in the control group at six-month follow up. Additionally, self-forgiveness at Time 1 and self-forgiveness at Time 3 significantly accounted for 34% and 28% of the variance, respectively, in HIV-related stigma at Time 3. Though self-forgiveness was shown to be better than forgiveness of others in predicting HIV-related stigma, the forgiveness intervention was not effective in reducing overall HIV-related stigma in PLH. HIV-related stigma is likely more complex than originally conceptualized. Implications and future directions in improving interventions to mitigate HIV-related stigma are discussed. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149612/
Backflow: A Collection
This collection consists of a critical preface and nine essays. The preface analyzes, first, how the imagination influences the personal journey of a writer, and second, the techniques authors use, mainly form, time, and space, to enact the imagination and propel the reader into an imagined narrative. The essays explore themes of loss, mental illness, the rift between the “real” and the “imagined” life, and the intangibility of memory itself. Collection includes the essays “Into the Snow,” “No Longer a Part,” “Borderland,” “Still Wounds,” “What Stays in Las Vegas,” “Remnants,” “The Root,” “Your Father,” and “The Land Lord.” digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc103346/
Bad Blood: Impurity and Danger in the Early Modern Spanish Mentality
The current work is an intellectual history of how blood permeated early modern Spaniards' conceptions of morality and purity. This paper examines Spanish intellectuals' references to blood in their medical, theological, demonological, and historical works. Through these excerpts, this thesis demonstrates how this language of blood played a role in buttressing the church's conception of good morals. This, in turn, will show that blood was used as a way to persecute Jews and Muslims, and ultimately define the early modern Spanish identity. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc30504/
Baptist Pastoral Leadership: An Analysis for Curriculum Development
Through a qualitative study utilizing in-depth interviews, practitioner opinion was gathered regarding how Christian institutions of higher education, primarily Baptist seminaries, may better utilize formal and continuing education to prepare clergy for pastoral leadership. The sample of ten subjects for this study, drawn from the 550 active senior pastors in the Dallas Baptist Association and the Kauf-Van Baptist Association, was selected based on a maximum variation sampling method. The intention was to provide a better understanding of the leadership skills required by senior pastors, to help develop pastoral ministries curriculum and to assess the potential effectiveness of continuing education for pastoral leadership. The subjects indicated that the formal degree program of their seminary did equip them with the basic knowledge needed for pastoral leadership but it did not provide them in sufficiency with the necessary, practical skills for pastoral leadership. The pattern that emerged from the data indicates that, overall, seminaries are providing a quality education in preparing pastors for the ministry in their formal degree plans. However, seminaries may have opportunities to be of further service and to gain a competitive advantage vis a vis other seminaries by enhancing and expanding their continuing education programs. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc30446/
Baroque Elements In The Piano Sonata, Opus 9 By Paul Creston
Paul Creston (1906-1985) was one of the most significant American composers from the middle of the twentieth century. Though Creston maintained elements of the nineteenth-century Romantic tradition and was categorized as a “Neo-Romantic” or “20th-century traditionalist,” many of Creston’s compositions contain elements of Baroque music. His Piano Sonata, Opus 9 provides significant examples of Baroque elements, while already foreshadowing his mature style. The purpose of this study is to explore Baroque elements in the compositional language of Paul Creston’s Piano Sonata, Opus 9. All four movements of the Piano Sonata will be examined in regards to its stylistic features associated with Baroque practices. These features mainly consist of rhythm, texture, imitative writing, and repeated phrase structure. Each category of the study will include comparisons of Domenico Scarlatti’s keyboard sonatas with Creston’s sonata. Through an examination of the Piano Sonata and its Baroque elements, this study hopes to inspire renewed interest in the work among musicians and to help the performer give a more stylistically coherent, and accurate, performance. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc103407/
Baseball in the Digital Age: The Role of Online and Mobile Content in Major League Baseball's Media Product Portfolio
This case study evaluated Major League Baseball's (MLB) media product portfolio to identify how broadcast revenues have evolved over the past decade. This research looked back across baseball's long, dysfunctional history with broadcasters in order to recognize the significance of its ambitious use of online content. While MLB had failed to fully utilize the potential of broadcasting, the league's aggressive online strategy through its Advanced Media (MLBAM) division made it the industry leader in broadcasting live streaming sports video. MLBAM expanded its online streaming video to mobile phones and iPad, further expanding the distribution of its content. This research compared MLBAM revenue to traditional broadcast revenue while analyzing the online division's role in promoting the MLB brand. This case study concluded that while MLBAM had made a number of groundbreaking developments, the league could still improve its use of embedded, shared video clips, archived footage and international marketing in order to further extend the brand equity of the MLB, its thirty individual brands and its media product portfolio. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc33170/
Bearing Strength of Cold Formed Steel Bolted Connections in Trusses
The existing design provision in North American Specification for Cold- Formed Steel Structural Member (AISI S100) for the bearing strength of bolted connections were developed from tests on bolted connected sheets which were restrained by bolt nut and head with or without washers. However, in the cold-formed assemblies, particularly in trusses, the single bolt goes through both sides of the connected sections, making the connected sheets on each side unrestrained. the warping of the unrestrained sheet may reduce the bearing strength of the bolted connection. This research investigates the behavior and strength of bearing failure in bolted connections in cold-formed steel trusses. Tensile tests were conducted on trusses connections with various material thicknesses. It was found that the AISI S100 works well for thick connections but provides unconservative predictions for thin materials. Based on the experimental results, a modified bearing strength method is proposed for calculating the bearing strength of bolted truss connections. the proposed method can be used for any cold-formed steel connections with unrestrained sheet. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115135/
The Beauty of Nature As a Foundation for Environmental Ethics: China and the West
My dissertation aims at constructing an environmental ethics theory based on environmental aesthetics in order to advocate and promote environmentally sustainable practices, policies, and lifestyles. I attempt to construct an integrated environmental aesthetics in order to inspire people’s feelings of love towards nature and motivate them to protect it.  In order to achieve this goal, I first examine the philosophical understanding and aesthetic appreciation of nature from philosophical traditions of China, which have an impact on the general public’s attitude towards nature. in chapter one of my dissertation, I point out that nature is viewed as an organic system which is always in a self-generating process of production and reproduction of life. the metaphysical foundation for this perspective of nature is ch’i. Therefore the aesthetic appreciation of nature in China is also the aesthetic appreciation of ch’i. with regard to the concept of ch’i, I focus on the following three questions: (1) what are the objective and aesthetic features of ch’i? (2) How do the Chinese appreciate aesthetic features of ch’i? (3) Why the objective features of ch’i are regarded as the objects of aesthetic appreciation? I argue that the Chinese appreciate the aesthetic features of ch’i by using intellectual intuition and that empathy is the reason why the objective features of ch’i are considered to be aesthetic features. in Chapter 2, I explain in detail the two aesthetic categories for aesthetic appreciation of nature in two major philosophical schools in China: emptiness and creativity. in Chapter 3, I examine the philosophical foundations for aesthetic appreciation of nature in the West. I first investigate the influence of traditional Western philosophy on the perceptions of nature. I argue that traditional Western philosophical thinking doesn’t support aesthetic appreciation of nature. I point out that aesthetic appreciation of nature started from eighteenth century in the West. I examine Kant’s aesthetic categories of beauty and sublime in his appreciation of nature. in contemporary world, I focus on the Allen Carlson’s positive aesthetics and Arnold Berleant’s engagement model to appreciate the beauty of environment. in Chapter 4, I evaluate the theories of aesthetic appreciation of nature in the West and China and attempt to construct an integrated theory of aesthetic appreciation of nature. the key point of this theory is to establish a caring relationship with nature based on aesthetic appreciation of nature and active participation in the beauty of it. This relationship will motivate people to protect nature and also contribute to human happiness. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115080/
Beggars, Brides, and Bards: The Political Philosophy of Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew
To do justice to Shakespeare’s comprehensive moral and political thought this paper seeks to discover what we can learn from the political philosophy of his largely neglected comedy, Taming of the Shrew. Not only does this endeavor provide a valuable forgotten link within the critical analyses of the theorists, but it also corrects the various misinterpretations of the play among contemporary critics. I argue that the play surveys various key themes that are rooted in classical political philosophy – such as education, the problems of anger, and the dynamic between nature and convention – and takes into consideration how they apply to modern man. Shakespeare borrows Plato’s idea that eroticism is central to education and explicitly references Ovid’s love books to reexamine our conceptions about one’s formation of character, the proper standards for judging the ideal mate, and the effects of these issues on the stability of the community. I also submit an innovative explanation of the relation between the induction and the main plot. Taken together they exhibit a critique of the role of the poet and his art in modern civil society. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc84258/
Behavioral Aspects of Latino Familialism: a Three Study Analysis
The existing research on Latino familialism draws a distinction between the attitudes associated with familialism and familialism-based action. Because attitudes tend to be more stable when considering variables such as immigration generation status, etc., social science researchers tend to employ measures based on attitudinal aspects of familialism, rather than action or behavior. Because of this preference, there is a lack of studies that examine familialism-based action and behaviors. This dissertation consists of three unique studies that examine actions and behaviors associated with familialism, while taking into account the methodological concerns expressed by previous researchers. The first study uses nationally representative U.S. data to compare the differences in the frequency of contact with various family members, among black non-Hispanics, Hispanics, and white non-Hispanics. The central finding of this study is that Hispanics maintain more frequent contact with family than white non-Hispanics, but there is no difference between Hispanics and black non-Hispanics, with the exception of contact with fathers. The second study, which employs qualitative data collected from a metropolitan area in the Southwest U.S., examines the locus of educational aspirations and expectations among a sample of Hispanics and white non-Hispanics. Among other things, this study finds that Hispanic females were more likely than other participants to make statements that suggest the aspirations or expectations of significant others were a strong influence in the decision to attend college. This study further argues that this tendency is related to the acquiescent nature of traditional Hispanic gender norms associated with the familial concept of marianismo. Using nationally representative U.S. data, the final study finds that, other things being equal, Hispanic college students are more likely than non-Hispanic students to attend a college or university that is within fifty miles of their permanent residence. The study further finds that this tendency mediates the gap between Hispanic students and white non-Hispanic students, in terms of the selectivity level of institutions attended. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc177280/
"Being" a Stickist: A Phenomenological Consideration of "Dwelling" in a Virtual Music Scene
Musical instruments are not static, unchanging objects. They are, instead, things that materially evolve in symmetry with human practices. Alterations to an instrument's design often attend to its ergonomic or expressive capacity, but sometimes an innovator causes an entirely new instrument to arise. One such instrument is the Chapman Stick. This instrument's history is closely intertwined with global currents that have evolved into virtual, online scenes. Virtuality obfuscates embodiment, but the Stick's world, like any instrument's, is optimally related in intercorporeal exchanges. Stickists circumvent real and virtual obstacles to engage the Stick world. Using an organology informed by the work of Heidegger and Merleau-Ponty, this study examines how the Chapman Stick, as a material "thing," speaks in and through a virtual, representational environment. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc28430/
The Beliefs and Expectations of Effective Secondary Choral Teachers in Culturally Diverse Schools
Through the years, educational theorists and researchers have been interested in a possible relationship between teachers' effectiveness and their beliefs and expectations. Three concepts underpinned this work: teacher effectiveness, cultural diversity, and teachers' beliefs and expectations. The premise of the study was that the beliefs and expectations of effective secondary choral teachers are related to the social-cultural contexts in which they teach. The study implemented critical discourse analysis as the theoretical framework and the in-depth phenomenological long interview for data collection. Three secondary choral teachers were selected to participate in the study based on the researcher's criteria. The study revealed how each teacher conceptualized student cultural diversity during the teaching experience. Teacher beliefs about effective teaching in culturally diverse settings were described as developing over time in phases along a continuum. The study also confirmed that teachers' beliefs about students can be changed through experiences and reflection. The study revealed effective teachers focused on three different types of expectations in the teaching and learning context and affirmed diverse cultural identities and backgrounds. Recommendations included the development of stronger mentorship programs to increase effective teaching strategies for the secondary choral classroom. The findings of this study support my previous work, which introduces a sequential learning framework for teaching music in culturally diverse schools. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc271902/
Benefits and Costs of Social Interactions Among Firefighters
Despite high levels of exposure, firefighter posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) rates are unclear. Likewise, questions remain regarding how social interactions and beliefs about emotion might interact to influence PTSD in firefighters. In this study, U.S. urban firefighters (N = 225) completed measures of social support, negative social interactions, and fear of emotion which were then used via regression analyses to predict PTSD symptoms. Each independent variable predicted PTSD beyond variance accounted for by demographic variables. Additionally, fear of emotion emerged as the strongest individual predictor of PTSD and a moderator of the relation between social interactions and PTSD symptoms. These findings emphasize the importance of beliefs about emotion; both in how these beliefs might influence the expression of PTSD symptoms, and in how the social networks of trauma survivors might buffer distress. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc33149/
Benthic Macroinvertebrates of Temperate, Sub-Antarctic Streams: The Effects of Altitudinal Zoning and Temperature on the Phenology of Aquatic Insects Associated to the Robalo River, Navarino Island (55°S), Chile
The Cape Horn Biosphere Reserve, within the remote Sub-Antarctic ecoregion is a reservoir of expressions of biological and cultural diversity. Although it is considered one of 24 wilderness areas remaining in the world, it is not free from local and global threats, such as invasive species, and climate change. Field biologists and philosophers associated to the Sub-Antarctic Biocultural Conservation Program and the Omora Ethnobotanical Park, have worked to describe the region’s biocultural diversity, linking ecological and philosophical research into education, ecotourism, and conservation, through a methodology called field environmental philosophy (FEP), which integrates ecological sciences and environmental ethics through a 4-step cycle consisting of: 1) interdisciplinary research; 2) composition of metaphors; 3) design of field activities with an ecological and ethical orientation; and 4) implementation of in situ conservation areas. In this context, the purposes of this dissertation were to: 1) provide a comprehensive review of publications regarding the conservation status of aquatic and terrestrial insects at a global scale and with an emphasis in southern South America; 2) study the distribution of benthic macroinvertebrates through the sharp altitudinal gradient of the Róbalo River watershed; 3) describe the life histories of Gigantodax sp (Simuliidae: Diptera) and Meridialaris chiloeense (Leptophlebiidae: Ephemeroptera) in the Róbalo River and to assess the potential effects of climate change on their phenology; and 4) to apply FEP methodology in order to better understand and communicate the intrinsic and instrumental values of freshwater invertebrates in the Cape Horn Biosphere Reserve. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc103303/
Beta-adrenergic Blockade Via Atenolol and Its Effects on Blood Pressure, Heart Rate, and Renal Morphology in the Developing Chicken Gallus Gallus Domesticus
Chicken embryos were chronically exposed to the ?1- blocker atenolol during one of three stages: mesonephros (E7-E9), mesonephros-metanephros (E11-E13), or metanephros (E15-E17). Mesonephros group hearts were larger than all other groups (P < 0.01). Mesonephros and metanephros group kidneys were larger than all remaining groups (P < 0.0001). The mesonephros group nephron number was ~40% lower than control values (P = 0.002). Glomerular areas were 26% and 18% larger than the control group in the mesonephros and metanephros groups, respectively (P < 0.001). These data suggest an E7-E9 critical window of cardiovascular and renal development for atenolol. Acute atenolol exposure in E15 embryos showed an increase in mean arterial pressure with all but the highest dose. All doses significantly decreased heart rate. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc177248/
Between Comancheros and Comanchería: a History of Fort Bascom, New Mexico
Access: Use of this item is restricted to the UNT Community.
In 1863, Fort Bascom was built along the Canadian River in the Eroded Plains of Territorial New Mexico. Its unique location placed it between the Comanches of Texas and the Comancheros of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains. This post was situated within Comanchería during the height of the United States Army's war against the Southern Plains Indians, yet it has garnered little attention. This study broadens the scholarly understanding of how the United States Army gained control of the Southwest by examining the role Fort Bascom played in this mission. This includes an exploration of the Canadian River Valley environment, an examination of the economic relationship that existed between the Southern Plains Indians and the mountain people of New Mexico, and an account of the daily life of soldiers posted to Fort Bascom. This dissertation thus provides an environmental and cultural history of the Canadian River Valley in New Mexico, a social history of the men stationed at Fort Bascom, and proof that the post played a key role in the Army's efforts to gain control of the Southern Plains Indians. This study argues that Fort Bascom should be recognized as Texas' northern-most frontier fort. Its men were closer to the Comanche homeland than any Texas post of the period. Its records clearly show that the Army used Fort Bascom as a key forward base of operations against Comanches and Kiowas. An examination of Bascom's post returns, daily patrols, and major expeditions allows its history to provide a useful perspective on the nineteenth-century American Southwest. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc283832/
Beyond Suzie Wong? An Analysis of Sandra Oh’s Portrayal in Grey’s Anatomy
In my study, I examine if and how Sandra Oh’s portrayal of Dr. Cristina Yang in Grey’s Anatomy, a primetime network drama, reifies or resists U.S. mediated stereotypes of Asian American females. I situate my intercultural study in an interpretive paradigm because I am want to explore how the evolving characteristics of existing the Asian American female mediated stereotype as they influence Asian American female identity. Additionally, I trace the historical development of Asian and Asian American stereotypes yellow peril to the model minority; and from Dragon Lady, Lotus Blossom, Geisha, and Suzie Wong. From my textual analysis, I suggest that when portrayals simultaneously reify and resist characteristics of existing Asian American stereotypes, they may help to breakdown perceived binaries of existing Asian and Asian American stereotypes. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc84229/
Beyond the Cabinet: Zbigniew Brzezinski’s Expansion of the National Security Adviser Position
The argument illustrated in the thesis outlines Zbigniew Brzezinski’s ability to manipulate himself and his agenda to top priority as the national security advisor to President Carter. It further argues that Brzezinski deserves more blame for the failure of American foreign policy towards Iran; not President Carter. The sources include primary sources such as Zbigniew Brzezinski and President Jimmy Carter’s memoirs as well as information from President Carter’s library in Atlanta, Georgia. Secondary sources include historians who focus on both presidential policy and President Carter and his staff. The thesis is organized as follows: the introduction of Brzezinski, then the focus turns to his time in the White House, Iran, then what he is doing today. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc84249/
A Bidirectional Two-Hop Relay Network Using GNU Radio and USRP
A bidirectional two-hop relay network with decode-and-forward strategy is implemented using GNU Radio (software) and several USRPs (hardware) on Ubuntu (operating system). The relay communication system is comprised of three nodes; Base Station A, Base Station B, and Relay Station (the intermediate node). During the first time slot, Base Station A and Base Station B will each transmit data, e.g., a JPEG file, to Relay Station using DBPSK modulation and FDMA. For the final time slot, Relay Station will perform a bitwise XOR of the data, and transmit the XORed data to Base Station A and Base Station B, where the received data is decoded by performing another XOR operation with the original data. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc84237/
Biocompatible Hybrid Nanomaterials Involving Polymers and Hydrogels Interfaced with Phosphorescent Complexes and Toxin-Free Metallic Nanoparticles for Biomedical Applications
The major topics discussed are all relevant to interfacing brightly phosphorescent and non-luminescent coinage metal complexes of [Ag(I) and Au(I)] with biopolymers and thermoresponsive gels for making hybrid nanomaterials with an explanation on syntheses, characterization and their significance in biomedical fields. Experimental results and ongoing work on determining outreaching consequences of these hybrid nanomaterials for various biomedical applications like cancer therapy, bio-imaging and antibacterial abilities are described. In vitro and in vivo studies have been performed on majority of the discussed hybrid nanomaterials and determined that the cytotoxicity or antibacterial activity are comparatively superior when compared to analogues in literature. Consequential differences are noticed in photoluminescence enhancement from hybrid phosphorescent hydrogels, phosphorescent complex ability to physically crosslink, Au(I) sulfides tendency to form NIR (near-infrared) absorbing AuNPs compared to any similar work in literature. Syntheses of these hybrid nanomaterials has been thoroughly investigated and it is determined that either metallic nanoparticles syntheses or syntheses of phosphorescent hydrogels can be carried in single step without involving any hazardous reducing agents or crosslinkers or stabilizers that are commonly employed during multiple step syntheses protocols for syntheses of similar materials in literature. These astounding results that have been discovered within studies of hybrid nanomaterials are an asset to applications ranging from materials development to health science and will have striking effect on environmental and green chemistry approaches. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc84243/
Bioconcentration and Morphological Effects of Triclosan on Three Species of Wetland Plants
Triclosan (TCS) is an antimicrobial compound found in several types of common household products. After being washed down the drain, TCS will then end up in the local watershed. Although numerous studies have been conducted to evaluate the fate and effects of TCS in aquatic environments, there have been no studies evaluating the role arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AM) play in a plants response to TCS exposure. Three species of wetland plants native North Texas were inoculated with AM spores and exposed to 0, 0.4 g/L and 4.0 g/L TCS concentrations. Root morphology of E. prostrata and S. herbacea showed AM and exposure responses. S. herbacea produced the greatest amounts biomass and TCS bioaccumulation, in all but one treatment. It also displayed opposing results to E. prostrata in measures of root length, root surface area, relative root mass, relative shoot mass and shoot:root ratio. TCS root tissue concentrations increased with increased exposures for both E. prostrata and S. herbacea. Even though E. prostrata had the lowest levels in each measure of biomass production, it had the highest amount of root TCS bioaccumulation in the AM inoculated 4.0 g/L treatment. H. laevis was between the other two species in terms of biomass production, and did not demonstrate any exposure or inoculation effects in morphology or TCS accumulation. Overall, no clear patterns were detected, which highlights the fact that further study is required to completely understand the effects compounds like TCS can have on plant community structure, and ultimately ecosystem function. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc271900/
Bioconcentration of Triclosan, Methyl-Triclosan, and Triclocarban in the Plants and Sediments of a Constructed Wetland
Triclosan and triclocarban are antimicrobial compounds added to a variety of consumer products that are commonly detected in waste water effluent. The focus of this study was to determine whether the bioconcentration of these compounds in wetland plants and sediments exhibited species specific and site specific differences by collecting field samples from a constructed wetland in Denton, Texas. The study showed that species-specific differences in bioconcentration exist for triclosan and triclocarban. Site-specific differences in bioconcentration were observed for triclosan and triclocarban in roots tissues and sediments. These results suggest that species selection is important for optimizing the removal of triclosan and triclocarban in constructed wetlands and raises concerns about the long term exposure of wetland ecosystems to these compounds. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc84304/
Biodegradable Poly(hydroxy Butyrate-co-valerate) Nanocomposites And Blends With Poly(butylene Adipate-co-terephthalate) For Sensor Applications
The utilization of biodegradable polymers is critical for developing “cradle to cradle” mindset with ecological, social and economic consequences. Poly(hydroxy butyrate-co-valerate) (PHBV) shows significant potential for many applications with a polypropylene equivalent mechanical performance. However, it has limitations including high crystallinity, brittleness, small processing window, etc. which need to be overcome before converting them into useful products. Further the development of biodegradable strain sensing polymer sensors for structural health monitoring has been a growing need. In this dissertation I utilize carbon nanotubes as a self sensing dispersed nanofiller. The impact of its addition on PHBV and a blend of PHBV with poly(butylene adipate-co-terephthalate) (PBAT) polymer was examined. Nanocomposites and blends of PHBV, PBAT, and MWCNTs were prepared by melt-blending. The effect of MWCNTs on PHBV crystallinity, crystalline phase, quasi-static and dynamic mechanical property was studied concurrently with piezoresistive response. In PHBV/PBAT blends a rare phenomenon of melting point elevation by the addition of low melting point PBAT was observed. The blends of these two semicrystalline aliphatic and aromatic polyesters were investigated by using differential scanning calorimetry, small angle X-ray scattering, dynamic mechanical analysis, surface energy measurement by contact angle method, polarized optical and scanning electron microscopy, and rheology. The study revealed a transition of immiscible blend compositions to miscible blend compositions across the 0-100 composition range. PHBV10, 20, and 30 were determined to be miscible blends based on a single Tg and rheological properties. The inter-relation between stress, strain, morphological structure and piezoresistive response of MWCNT filled PHBV and PHBV/PBAT blend system was thoroughly investigated. The outcomes of piezoreistivity study indicated MWCNT filled PHBV and PHBV/PBAT blend system as a viable technology for structural health monitoring. Finally, the compostability of pure polymer, blend system, and MWCNT filled system was studied indicating that PBAT and CNT decreased the biodegradability of PHBV with CNT being a better contributor than PBAT. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc103405/
Biodiversity Loss, the Motivation Problem, and the Future of Conservation Education in the United States
The purpose of this dissertation is to make sense of two sets of reactions. On the one hand, Americans can barely lift a finger to help threatened and endangered species while on the other, they routinely come to the aid of human victims of disaster. I argue that in contrast to cases of human tragedy, for the biodiversity crisis conservationists are faced not only with the familiar yet arduous task of motivating the American public to care for living other-than-humans, but they are also saddled with having to overcome the motivation problem of future ethics. The motivation problem consists in eliminating or bridging a motivational gap that lies between knowledge of the effects of our actions on future generations and action taken based upon such knowledge. The gap exists because motives that typically move people to action are either ineffective or unavailable. What is more, the gap influences not only our ability to care for future humans, but it affects our ability to care for future other-than-humans as well. Biodiversity loss is in fact a subset of the problem of future generations, an identification hitherto little appreciated. I argue that conservationists can overcome the motivational gap not by appealing directly to the value of species or biodiversity, both of which are temporally distant, abstract and general moral patients, but indirectly, by focusing on the concrete and particular lives of extant and near future moral patients. By applying techniques that have been developed to overcome the motivation problem as it pertains to distant future human generations, conservationists have additional resources to draw upon in their efforts to motivate American citizens to preserve biodiversity. This dissertation’s contribution to the fields of environmental philosophy and conservation biology is both theoretical and practical. It is theoretically significant to elucidate the nature of moral failure for biodiversity conservation. In terms of broader impacts, identifying the basis of moral failure for biodiversity conservation allows me to assess educational campaigns and environmental policy, and to suggest solutions for bridging the motivational gap. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc103321/
The Biopsychosocial Approach to Understanding, Subtyping, and Treating Depression: Results from the National Comorbidity Survey - Replication.
The most effective and useful way to diagnose and subtype depression has been a long debated topic which even now does not have a definite answer. The biopsychosocial approach to diagnosis may be a solution to this problem by linking various etiologies to symptom presentation. The biopsychosocial model, in regard to depression, takes into account biological risk factors/contributors, psychological or cognitive risk factors/contributors, and social risk factors/contributors to depression when making diagnosis and subtyping determinations. However, the most effective way to use this model in the assessment, diagnosis, and treatment of depression is not yet clear. In this study, the utility of the biopsychosocial model as an effective approach to conceptualizing and treating depression was assessed by testing hypotheses that showed that etiological contributors are related to the presence and differential presentation of depression, and that these etiologically-based subtypes of depression respond differently to different forms of treatment. These hypotheses were tested using data from the National Comorbidity Survey - Replication (NCS-R). Results showed that the biopsychosocial model can effectively predict the presence, severity and chronicity of depression, and may inform specific biopsychosocially-based subtypes. No conclusions could be drawn regarding success in treatment based on the biopsychosocial model. Future directions for research based on the current study are discussed. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc68013/
Bioresorbable Polymer Blend Scaffold for Tissue Engineering
Tissue engineering merges the disciplines of study like cell biology, materials science, engineering and surgery to enable growth of new living tissues on scaffolding constructed from implanted polymeric materials. One of the most important aspects of tissue engineering related to material science is design of the polymer scaffolds. The polymer scaffolds needs to have some specific mechanical strength over certain period of time. In this work bioresorbable aliphatic polymers (PCL and PLLA) were blended using extrusion and solution methods. These blends were then extruded and electrospun into fibers. The fibers were then subjected to FDA standard in vitro immersion degradation tests where its mechanical strength, water absorption, weight loss were observed during the eight weeks. The results indicate that the mechanical strength and rate of degradation can be tailored by changing the ratio of PCL and PLLA in the blend. Processing influences these parameters, with the loss of mechanical strength and rate of degradation being higher in electrospun fibers compared to those extruded. A second effort in this thesis addressed the potential separation of the scaffold from the tissue (loss of apposition) due to the differences in their low strain responses. This hypothesis that using knit with low tension will have better compliance was tested and confirmed. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc68008/
Bipolar Disorder in the Family: Impact on Functioning and Adjustment to College
Bipolar disorder is a serious mental disorder, affecting anywhere from 2 to 4 percent of Americans. Though research has indicated that this disorder can be devastating for patients, less is known about how the disorder impacts family members. There is no research that has considered impacts on family members adjusting to college. The purpose of the current study was to determine the extent to which having a family member with bipolar disorder impacts adjustment to college, as well as factors that might account for worse functioning. Two groups were recruited: students with a bipolar family member (n = 25) and students with no family history of the disorder (n = 50). Participants were interviewed regarding their own histories of a mood disorder, as well as mood disorder histories in their immediate families. They then completed surveys assessing adjustment to college, functioning, caregiving burden, parental relationship, and attachment style. Students with a family history of bipolar disorder had significantly lower social adjustment scores, lower personal-emotional adjustment scores, and lower financial functioning scores than students without this history. Lower scores were found even after controlling for psychopathology. Avoidant attachment behaviors, anxious attachment behaviors, and aspects of the paternal relationship were identified as potential mediators. Caregiving burden was identified as a partial mediator. Implications for families and educational institutions are discussed. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc84195/
Blogging and Tweens: Communication Portal to Reading Selection and Engagement
The ethnographic study utilized the research techniques of observations, content analysis, and semi-structured interviews with tween participants (i.e., 9 through 13 year-old youth) during an 8-week literary blog project. Twenty-six participants created individual blog pages within a member-only classroom blog site that allowed for online communication between members. the blog project incorporated social networking applications with which youth frequently engage. the research questions ensured data regarding what facets participants found appealing and motivating during the project was collected. the questions allowed for determining if participants utilized peer blogs for reading material selection or repurposed the blogs to discuss other topics. Components of self-determination theory and engagement theory underlay the project design and aided in identifying motivational aspects of the data. Frequency tables outlined the identified patterns and structures of participants’ online activity. Participants found the ability to change the colors of their blog backgrounds and to design their individual blogs and the giving and receiving of feedback to be the two most appealing features of the project. Participants chose books from peer suggestions in the online world but also selected materials from recommendations they received in face-to-face interactions with their peers, their teacher, and the school librarian. Little evidence of repurposing the blog for social topics was observed. Participants engaged in discussions predominantly based around the books they were currently reading or had read. Implications for incorporating social networking applications within the classroom environment are discussed. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115155/
Blood and Earth: Indivisible Territory and Terrorist Group Longevity
The study of terrorism has been both broad in scope and varied in approach. Little work has been done, however, on the territorial aspects of terrorist groups. Most terrorist groups are revolutionary to one degree or another, seeking the control of a piece of territory; but for the supportive population of a terrorist group, how important is the issue of territory? Are the intangible qualities of territory more salient to a given population than other factors? Are territorially based terrorist groups more durable than their ideologically or religiously motivated cohorts? This paper aims to propose the validity of the territorial argument for the study of political terrorism. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc271819/
Blood Brothers
Blood Brothers as a media project works as a diptych. There are two – seemingly identical – pieces of the project that must both be experienced to understand the project as a whole. The first piece of the project is the linear documentary. This part captures the experience as it exists in the past. It exists as a master copy of the original story of mine and my foster brother’s relationship. This version of the story will always exist in the past. The second part is the live-cinema documentary performance. In this version of the story, my foster brother and I are no longer only images on a screen; we are living, breathing, and emotional subjects in the present. Our presence alters how the audience consumes the material. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149656/
Blueline Concerto: Critical Essay
The purpose of this critical essay is two-fold. First, the essay presents a detailed critical analysis of my original composition, Blueline Concerto for bass trombone and wind ensemble. Second, using Blueline Concerto, the essay presents preliminary findings of my study to develop an approach to composing that takes into account the musicians' health, specifically regarding noise induced hearing loss (NIHL). Through various hypothesized composition- and orchestral-based approaches, I test effectiveness on changes in NIHL risk while also noting that artistic merit and compositional integrity is preserved. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc283800/
Bodies and Other Firewood
The chakra system consists of seven energetic vortexes ascending up the spine that connect to every aspect of human existence. These vortexes become blocked and unblocked through the course of a life, these openings and closings have physiological and mental repercussions. Knowledge of these physical and mental manifestations, indicate where the chakra practitioner is in need, the practitioner can then manipulate their mind and body to create a desired outcome. These manipulations are based upon physical exercises and associative meditations for the purpose of expanding the human experience. As a poem can be thought of as the articulation of the human experience, and the chakra system can be thought of as a means to understand and enhance that experience, it is interesting and worthwhile leap to explore the how the chakras can develop and refresh the way we read and write poetry. This critical preface closely reads seven poems, one through each chakra, finding what the chakras unveil. Here, each chakra is considered for its dynamic creative capabilities and for its beneficial potentiality in the reading and writing process, finding each chakra provides tools: idea generators with the potential to free the poet from usual patterns of creativity while broadening vision and expressivity. In this collection of poetry poems are experiences chopped into consumable units that show and tell the constant negotiation between what is actually happening and the stories we tell ourselves about what is happening. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc177180/
Body Dissatisfaction, Disordered Eating Behaviors and Body Image Quality of Life in African American Women with Hiv
The purpose of the current study was to further our understanding of the subjective experience of middle-age African American women who are HIV+ and on highly active antiretroviral therapy, particularly how self-reported lipodystrophy (LD), levels of body dissatisfaction, body image quality of life, and engagement in disordered eating behaviors are related. Multiple regression, MANOVA, MANCOVA, ANOVA, and chi-square were utilized to test hypotheses. Results revealed that HIV+ and HIV- women did not differ significantly on their levels of body dissatisfaction or drive for thinness. When HIV+ women were examined in more detail a pattern emerged: women who self-reported fat hypertrophy had significantly higher levels of body dissatisfaction, bingeing, but not purging, and dietary restriction and fear of weight gain compared to women who did not self-report LD. About 75% of the sample was overweight or obese, and when BMI was controlled for, these differences persisted for body dissatisfaction and disordered eating behaviors for fat hypertrophy, but not fat atrophy. Overall, the findings indicate that the type of LD, specifically hypertrophy, is more related to body dissatisfaction and disordered eating behaviors, than LD in general. Clinical implications and limitations of these findings are discussed. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc177208/
Boosting for Learning From Imbalanced, Multiclass Data Sets
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In many real-world applications, it is common to have uneven number of examples among multiple classes. The data imbalance, however, usually complicates the learning process, especially for the minority classes, and results in deteriorated performance. Boosting methods were proposed to handle the imbalance problem. These methods need elongated training time and require diversity among the classifiers of the ensemble to achieve improved performance. Additionally, extending the boosting method to handle multi-class data sets is not straightforward. Examples of applications that suffer from imbalanced multi-class data can be found in face recognition, where tens of classes exist, and in capsule endoscopy, which suffers massive imbalance between the classes. This dissertation introduces RegBoost, a new boosting framework to address the imbalanced, multi-class problems. This method applies a weighted stratified sampling technique and incorporates a regularization term that accommodates multi-class data sets and automatically determines the error bound of each base classifier. The regularization parameter penalizes the classifier when it misclassifies instances that were correctly classified in the previous iteration. The parameter additionally reduces the bias towards majority classes. Experiments are conducted using 12 diverse data sets with moderate to high imbalance ratios. The results demonstrate superior performance of the proposed method compared to several state-of-the-art algorithms for imbalanced, multi-class classification problems. More importantly, the sensitivity improvement of the minority classes using RegBoost is accompanied with the improvement of the overall accuracy for all classes. With unpredictability regularization, a diverse group of classifiers are created and the maximum accuracy improvement reaches above 24%. Using stratified undersampling, RegBoost exhibits the best efficiency. The reduction in computational cost is significant reaching above 50%. As the volume of training data increase, the gain of efficiency with the proposed method becomes more significant. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc407775/
Booty Calls, Rage, and Racialized/sexualized Subjects: Tmz's Coverage of Rihanna and Chris Brown
Internet-based celebrity gossip blog site, TMZ, is a growing cultural force. Employing critical rhetorical analytics, the author examines the TMZ coverage of Chris Brown's assault on his then-girlfriend, Rihanna. This project explicates TMZ's enthymematic invocation of dominant cultural ideologies surrounding race, sex, and domestic violence. Chapter 1 demonstrates the theoretical importance of both celebrities and gossip blogs, signaling the ideological importance of each. Chapter 2 critiques TMZ's reliance on historic myths regarding sex and race in their reporting on this case. Chapter 3 analyzes TMZ's humorous and affective strategies that bolster broader investments in colorblind ideologies. Chapter 4 concludes by examining the interplay of formal rhetorical elements that inform the project's findings. This research reveals that TMZ utilizes affective, enthymematic strategies that camouflage broader racist and sexist ideological impulses that perpetuate domestic violence myths. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc177250/
Boron Nitride by Atomic Layer Deposition: A Template for Graphene Growth
The growth of single and multilayer BN films on several substrates was investigated. A typical atomic layer deposition (ALD) process was demonstrated on Si(111) substrate with a growth rate of 1.1 Å/cycle which showed good agreement with the literature value and a near stoichiometric B/N ratio. Boron nitride films were also deposited by ALD on Cu poly crystal and Cu(111) single crystal substrates for the first time, and a growth rate of ~1ML/ALD cycle was obtained with a B/N ratio of ~2. The realization of a h-BN/Cu heterojunction was the first step towards a graphene/h-BN/Cu structure which has potential application in gateable interconnects. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc84305/
A Boy in a Canoe
The dissertation consists of a collection of personal essays about hunting and fishing. Because the essays are narratives and contain dialogue, characterization, description, themes, etc., they fall under the genre of creative nonfiction. The dissertation has two parts. Part I consists of an essay that discusses the author’s struggle to combine creative nonfiction with outdoor writing and also describes the author’s dilemma of writing about hunting, a topic that is often controversial at the university, while a graduate student. Part II of the dissertation consists of narratives that recount the author’s hunting and fishing experiences that occurred in North Texas and in the mountains of New Mexico. The essays discuss fishing for trout and hunting for deer, wild boars, quail, and duck. Three major themes are developed throughout the dissertation. The first theme describes the close relationship that exists between the author and his father. This closeness is partly due to the time that they have shared during decades of hunting and fishing together. The second theme discusses the ethics of hunting and especially focuses on which methods of hunting are ethical and which methods are not. The third theme explores the complex and sometimes unpleasant interactions that occur between sportsmen when they encounter each other while hunting and fishing. This theme explores the give and take attitude that must exist in order for sportsmen to get along. This attitude is necessary because no two outdoorsmen view the outdoors and hunting and fishing in quite the same way. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc84264/
Branded Content: Understanding the Mechanisms of Strategic Messaging in Entertainment Television Formats
Branded content as an advertising tactic is a growing phenomenon that is not widely researched and is generally ambiguous in nature. This study uses qualitative methods to explain how branded content is defined, how it functions, and how it can influence a brand. Case studies of IKEA and Chevrolet were compared alongside four interviews with branded content professionals. the data collected suggests that branded content in structure and substance is varied, however it comprises engagement, the brand, and financial transaction. the data collected also suggested that brands take a variety of stances when controlling content to support their brand, and that branded content generally supports the intangible aspects of a brand, as opposed to product features. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115129/
Brass Band History and Idiomatic Writing in Brass Music
The purpose of this research was to explore historical perspective of brass music. There is a brief history of brass bands in Britain. Furthermore, the paper examines the differences between two brass band pieces in the repertoire, A Western Fanfare by Eric Ewazen and Brass Symphony by Jan Koetsier. Both of these pieces were compared and contrasted against the author's newly composed work for brass, Two Companion Pieces for Brass Ensemble. The paper covers different techniques commonly used in brass writing and points these techniques out in all three pieces. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc271838/
The Brazos Valley Groundwater Conservation District: A Case Study in Texas Groundwater Conservation
This thesis examines the history of groundwater management through the development of groundwater conservation districts in Texas. Political, economic, ideological, and scientific understandings of groundwater and its regulation varied across the state, as did the natural resource types and quantities, which created a diverse and complicated position for lawmakers and landowners. Groundwater was consistently interpreted as a private property right and case law protected unrestricted use for the majority of the twentieth-century even as groundwater resources crossed property and political boundaries, and water tables declined particularly during the second-half of the century. The case study of the Brazos Valley Groundwater Conservation District describes the complicated history of groundwater in Texas as the state attempted to balance natural resource legislation and private property rights and illuminate groundwater’s importance for the future. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc84287/
Breaking accidental behavior chains.
Accidental behavior chains are a common problem in dog training. Many handlers inadvertently reinforce undesirable behaviors. The behavior analytic literature already contains articles describing methods of breaking chains; however, those methods either are not used in dog training for practical purposes or are ineffective in dog training. This experiment investigated two ways to break a behavior chain, including extending the chain and introducing a delay into the chain. The results of extending the chain showed that it is possible to decrease the target behavior using this method, but it was not eliminated in this study. Adding a delay into the behavior chain resulted in a quick elimination of the target behavior. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc28453/
Breaking Outside: Narratives of Art and Hawaii
This research examines the personal narratives of two contemporary non-native artists living and working on the island of Oahu, Hawaii. Issues related to narratives, power structures, artistic processes, insider/outsider dynamics, Hawaiian culture, island life, surfing, and the researcher's own experiences are woven together to formulate realizations surrounding alternative knowledge systems and the power of multiple or hidden narratives to the practice of art education. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc271797/
Bridging the Gap Between Access and Success: a Study of the Impact of an Access and Success Program on Academic Outcomes of Low-income College Freshmen
In response to the increasing cost of college, colleges and universities are leveraging financial aid and academic support services to implement access and success programs intended to help financially disadvantaged students afford and persist through a baccalaureate degree program. This research is a study of the efficacy of one such program at a large research university in the southwestern region of the United States. The study sample included low-income program participants in four cohorts of freshmen enrolling for the first time in college from fall 2007 (Cohort 1) to fall 2010 (Cohort 4) and a comparison group of almost 400 low-income freshmen who enrolled for the first time in college in fall 2006 (the year prior to program implementation) for a sample total of over 2150 students. Approximately 64% were female, 36 % were males, over 60% were African American and Hispanic, and over 75% were first generation college students. Logistic regression was used to measure probability and odds of their academic success and retention in the first year of college utilizing gender, ethnicity, parental degree attainment, and program participation as the independent variables. The logistic regression models illustrated that participation in the program netted a consistently positive and significant impact on academic success across all cohorts, increasing the odds ratio for academic success no less than three times in favor of program participants vis-à-vis the comparison group. The statistical models illustrated that the program netted a slight positive impact on the odds of retention, particularly for African American students. Therefore, the principle implication that might be drawn from this study is that by strategically leveraging financial aid and academic support services, access and success programs can facilitate higher rates of academic success and retention for financially disadvantaged college students. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149575/
Bridging the Theory-to-practice Gap: a Multivariate Correlational Study Exploring the Effects of a Graduate Online Learning Environment As a Community of Practice Framework
In this multivariate correlational study, the researcher examined the course culture of an online graduate course whose environment exhibited characteristics of a Community of practice (CoP). An online survey captured data used to explore the relationships among variables shown to describe a CoP in field environments and among student perceptions of their experience in the course culture. A canonical correlation analysis (CCA) and commonality analysis (CA) were conducted using five predictor variables and three criterion variables to evaluate the degree and direction of the relationships. The CCA revealed that the full model was significant, explaining approximately 74% of the variance among the two synthetic variates. Impact, faculty leadership, and connection were the largest contributors to the predictor variate. The criterion variate was primarily explained by value and perceived CoP, with exposure to the profession providing a smaller contribution. The CA confirmed these findings. Results from this study indicate that a CoP could be fostered in an online graduate course. The overall significance of the model indicates teachers can nurture an environment wherein graduate students will take the initiative to work with others to create and acquire knowledge that creates a sense of professional connection with each other and with the profession overall. The results of this study suggest further empirical research in implementing and assessing CoPs in online graduate courses is warranted. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc407763/
British Labour Government Policy in Iraq, 1945-1950
Britain during the Labour government's administration took a major step toward developing Iraq primarily due to the decision of Ernest Bevin, the Foreign Minister, to start a new British policy toward the Iraqi regimes that would increase the British influence in the area. This led to Bevin's strategy of depending on guiding the Iraqi regime to make economic and political reforms that would lead to social justice. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc271770/
Broad-band Light Emission From Ion Implanted Silicon Nanocrystals Via Plasmonic and Non-plasmonic Effects for Optoelectronics
Broad band light emission ranging from the ultraviolet (UV) to the near infrared (NIR) has been observed from silicon nanoparticles fabricated using low energy (30-45 keV) metal and non-metal ion implantation with a fluence of 5*1015 ions/cm2 in crystalline Si(100). It is found from a systematic study of the annealing carried out at certain temperatures that the spectral characteristics remains unchanged except for the enhancement of light emission intensity due to annealing. The annealing results in nucleation of metal nanoclusters in the vicinity of Si nanoparticles which enhances the emission intensity. Structural and optical characterization demonstrate that the emission originates from both highly localized defect bound excitons at the Si/Sio2 interface, as well as surface and interface traps associated with the increased surface area of the Si nanocrystals. The emission in the UV is due to interband transitions from localized excitonic states at the interface of Si/SiO2 or from the surface of Si nanocrystals. The radiative efficiency of the UV emission from the Si nanoparticles can be modified by the localized surface plasmon (LSP) interaction induced by the nucleation of silver nanoparticles with controlled annealing of the samples. The UV emission from Si nanoclusters are coupled resonantly to the LSP modes. The non-resonant emission can be enhanced by electrostatic-image charge effects. The emission in the UV (~3.3 eV) region can also be significantly enhanced by electrostatic image charge effects induced by Au nanoparticles. The UV emission from Si nanoclusters, in this case, can be coupled without LSP resonance. The recombination of carriers in Si bound excitons is mediated by transverse optical phonons due to the polarization of the surface bound exciton complex. The low energy side of emission spectrum at low temperature is dominated by 1st and 2nd order phonon replicas. Broad band emission ranging from the UV to the NIR wavelength range can be obtained from Ag implanted onto a single silicon substrate. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc177255/