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 Collection: UNT Theses and Dissertations
Academic Reading Online: Digital Reading Strategies of Graduate-level English Language Learners
English language learners (ELLs) face many linguistic and cultural challenges in their attempts to succeed academically. They encounter complex academic text, which is increasingly presented online. Although some research has addressed the challenges that university-level ELLs face when reading online texts, almost all of this prior work has focused on undergraduates. The purpose of the current study was to investigate the reading strategies employed by graduate-level ELLs when reading an academic English text online. Participating in the study were four foreign-born doctoral students from different first-language backgrounds—Arabic, Korean, Urdu, and Vietnamese—and the focus was on commonalities as well as differences among them. All four were enrolled in the same doctoral-level course, which included the reading of a specific online academic article as a course requirement. When reading this text individually, each student participated in a think-aloud procedure, followed by post-reading and discourse-based interviews. Analyses included unitizing data from the think-aloud protocols, coding units for strategies employed, and considering related interview commentary and classroom contributions. In their reading, these students made major use of problem-solving strategies, especially reading segments aloud and questioning. They also employed evaluative strategies as well as metacognitive strategies, which included affirming their understanding or indicating lack of understanding. With respect to global strategies, all made use of the article’s abstract and used the cursor to scroll forward to preview the article. In contrast to previous research with undergraduates, these students made little use of support strategies that involved translation websites. Instead, their major support strategies were navigating to web-based tools, particularly online encyclopedias in English. Despite prior theory and research suggesting the importance of sociorhetorical strategies in academic reading, only one student directed much attention to the authors of the article and to authorial intent. Although all four participants were students in the same doctoral course and were reading the same contextualized article, their strategy use differed in ways that seemed to be related to their educational and cultural backgrounds. Through its detailed analyses of these acts of academic reading, the study contributes to research into the sociocultural nature of ELL students’ reading process. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801951/
Act Like a Punk, Sing Like a Feminist: a Longitudinal Content Analysis of Feminist Themes in Punk Rock Song Lyrics, 1970-2009
Punk rock music has long been labeled sexist as copious media-generated accounts and reports of the genre concentrate on male artists, hyper-masculine performances, and lyrics considered to be aggressive, sexist, and misogynist. However, scholars have rarely examined punk rock music longitudinally, focusing heavily on 1980s and 1990s manifestations of the genre. Furthermore, few systematic content analyses of feminist themes in punk rock song lyrics have been conducted. The present research is a longitudinal content analysis of lyrics of 600 punk rock songs released for four decades between 1970 and 2009 to examine the prevalence of and longitudinal shifts in antiestablishment themes, the prevalence of and longitudinal shifts in sexist themes relative to feminist themes, the prevalence of and longitudinal shifts in specific feminist branches, and what factors are related to feminism. Using top-rated albums retrieved from Sputnik Music’s “Best Punk Albums” charts, systematic random sampling was applied to select 50 songs for each combination of three gender types and four decades. Sexism and feminism were then operationalized to construct a coding sheet to examine relevant dimensions. While the present study found no significant patterns of longitudinal increase or decrease in feminist or sexist themes, it revealed that feminist themes were consistently high across four decades and, furthermore, indicated a phenomenon of post-modern hybridity. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801944/
Adult Attachment, Acculturation and Help-seeking of Latino College Students
Based on theoretical reasoning and empirical evidence, the present study examined the unique and shared effects of attachment anxiety, attachment avoidance, and acculturation on attitudes toward seeking professional help among Latino college students. The research participants included 149 bilingual Latino college students from a large, public southwestern university. Results of a multiple regression analysis indicated that attachment avoidance was positively associated with both the recognition of need for psychological help and stigma of seeking professional help. Acculturation to American society was found to be statistically insignificant in predicting help-seeking attitudes in this sample of the population. Findings from exploratory questions suggested that Latino individuals would most likely seek help from parents, close friends, and then professionals. This study suggested that Latino individuals with high attachment avoidance acknowledge the potential benefit of professional help-seeking but distrust the process of approaching others for help. Limitations, implications, and future research directions will be discussed. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801882/
Algorithmic Music Analysis: a Case Study of a Prelude From David Cope’s “From Darkness, Light”
The use of algorithms in compositional practice has been in use for centuries. With the advent of computers, formalized procedures have become an important part of computer music. David Cope is an American composer that has pioneered systems that make use of artificial intelligence programming techniques. In this dissertation one of David Cope’s compositions that was generated with one of his processes is examined in detail. A general timeline of algorithmic compositional practice is outlined from a historical perspective, and realized in the Common Lisp programming language as a musicological tool. David Cope’s compositional output is summarized with an explanation of what types of systems he has utilized in the analyses of other composers’ music, and the composition of his own music. Twentieth century analyses techniques are formalized within Common Lisp as algorithmic analyses tools. The tools are then combined with techniques developed within other computational music analyses tools, and applied toward the analysis of Cope’s prelude. A traditional music theory analysis of the composition is provided, and outcomes of computational analyses augment the traditional analysis. The outcome of the computational analyses, or algorithmic analyses, is represented in statistical data, and corresponding probabilities. From the resulting data sets part of a machine-learning technique algorithm devises semantic networks. The semantic networks represent chord succession and voice leading rules that underlie the framework of Cope’s prelude. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801959/
Alternative Certification Teaching Programs in Texas: A Historical Analysis
Before 1984, nearly 975 of teachers entered the teaching profession after graduating from a traditional university-based program. However, beginning in the mid-1980s, alternative routes leading to teacher certification began to emerge in the United States. As of 2010, nearly one-third of all new teachers graduated from an alternative preparation program. As alternative certification (AC) routes approach 30 years since establishment, programs continue to evolve and increase in enrollment. This study focused on the changes that have come about in the maturation of alternative certification programs in Texas since legislation was passed in 1985. The purpose of the study was to delineate the evolution of AC programs using a historical approach, the study used both primary and secondary resources as research tools and employed the use of eight interviews and the literature review for the collection of data. The prediction of future teacher shortages, the need for diversity in the profession the political view to privatize education, and economic recessions were all motivating factors for establishing alternative teacher programs. In the beginning, graduation from AC programs were perceived as not authentic teachers and not as prepared for teaching as graduates from traditional programs. AC programs have become a legitimate and viable option for educator preparation programs as they offer greater flexibility, staff/instructor diversity, and multiple approaches to instruction. This data suggests that AC programs in Texas have emerged as a real and sustainable option to traditional certification programs leading to certification and licensure. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc799511/
Amarillo Globe-News: How Did Gene Howe and the Globe-News Help Guide Amarillo, Texas through the Dust Bowl and Great Depression?
For many years newspapers were locally owned by editors and publishers. However, today many are run by corporations from out of state. As a result, many communities have lost the personal relationship between the family owned publication and the community. Gene Howe, who served as editor, publisher and columnist of the Amarillo Globe-News from 1926 until his death in 1952, believed the community was where the focus should be and the newspaper should do all that it can to help their readers. Despite the fact that Howe was not born in Amarillo, Texas, his passion and love for the city and its inhabitants compensated for it. During the Dust Bowl and Great Depression Howe and the Globe-News helped Amarillo survive the dust and economic storms that blew through the Texas Panhandle, an area that has not been written as much as other parts of Texas. Through his “Tactless Texan” column, which served as a pulpit to the community, to the various contests and promotions the newspaper sprang up, including the creation of Mother in Law Day, Gene Howe gave the newspaper another dimension little has been studied about, the role of the editor and publisher in guiding a community through a dramatic era. Understanding Howe’s ethos can allow others to examine the roles editors and newspapers play in communities throughout the country. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc799498/
An Analysis of Du cristal…à la fumée by Kaija Saariaho and Axiom Unearthed, Original Composition
Beginning in the 1970s, and aided by the advancement and an increased prevalence of computers, spectral music emerged as an important development in twentieth century music. Spectral composers, as exemplified by Gérard Grisey and Tristan Murail, took the harmonic spectra of sounds as the fundamental materials of composition. The resulting music placed an emphasis on texture and gradually evolving forms. The generation of composers immediately following the spectralists assimilated their techniques into distinct and varying styles. Finnish composer Kaija Saariaho uses spectral techniques to create an aesthetic that generates form and progression from a sound/noise axis. In her piece Du cristal…à la fumée, a number of pendulum and half-pendulum gestures build up texture and form. The accompanying original composition Axiom Unearthed employs similar pendulum gestures and uses spectral techniques to generate melody and harmony in an aesthetic divergent from traditional spectral pieces. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc799510/
An Analysis of Market Efficiency for Exchange-traded Foreign Exchange Options on an Intraday Basis
This study examines the comparative magnitude of disturbances in intraday data for exchange traded foreign exchange (FX) options. An in-depth time series analysis on the frequency and extent of discrepancies in the disturbances is conducted. The purpose of this study is twofold. First, using intraday data and trading volume, this study attempts to determine whether both put-call parity and lower boundary conditions consistently hold for exchange traded options written on U.S. dollar denominated options on the Euro trading on the Philadelphia Stock Exchange (PHLX). Second, this study attempts to investigate the magnitude of any discrepancies that may exist due to a temporary cessation of either put-call parity or lower boundary conditions. Intraday (tick-by-tick) bid prices, ask prices, and trading volume on U.S. dollar denominated European style call options and put options on the Euro are obtained. Option data is collected through a Structured Query Language (SQL) request from the Bloomberg database. Corresponding tick-by-tick spot rates for the underlying exchange rate are obtained for the same time period. Tick-by-tick 3-month Treasury bill rates are obtained to for use as the relevant risk-free interest rate. The primary data set spans an approximate one month period from 11/1/2011 to 12/6/2011. Call and option pricing data for near-the-money exercise prices are obtained for options expiring in December 2011, January 2012, February 2012, March 2012, June 2012, and September 2012. A total of 7,212 ticks (minutes) are analyzed for the conversion strategy and 7,209 ticks are analyzed for the reversal strategy. The data is structured into an unbalanced panel data set (cross-sectional time series data) using put-call pairs as the cross sectional units and ticks as the time-series unit. To test the efficiency of the foreign exchange options market, lower boundary and put-call parity conditions were tested on tick-by-tick currency option data. Analysis shows that lower boundary conditions hold for the overwhelming majority of options, with less than 0.0001% of violations for the observed options. A more detailed econometric analysis was prepared to test the put-call parity condition for currency options. A fixed effects model specification is used to describe the put-call parity relationship. Based on the analysis, it is possible to obtain arbitrage profits in the short run through the use of either a conversion or reversal strategy even after accounting for transaction costs. Taking the first differences of the variables resulted in a model with stationary variables and statistically significant estimators. The inclusion of dummy variables for moneyness did not add significant explanatory power to the deterministic put-call parity relationship. For both first differences of conversion and reversal strategies, the large t-statistics for the slope coefficients and intercept terms indicate a rejection of the null hypothesis, H0: λ0 = 0 and λ1 = 1 after adjusting for standard error. This implies that once transaction costs are adjusted for, put-call parity does not hold. However, the intercept term is only very slightly negative, and the intercept term is only slightly less than one in both cases. This implies that when put-call parity is violated, arbitrage profit should be relatively small. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801929/
An Application of Marxian and Weberian Theories of Capitalism: the Emergence of Big Businesses in the United States, 1861 to 1890
This study was an examination of businesses that became big businesses in the United States during the time period between the years of 1861 and 1890, a period of time frequently referred to as the “big business era.” The purpose of the study was to identify actions taken by businesses that enabled them to become and remain big businesses. A secondary purpose of the study was to show that these actions were explained by theories of Karl Marx and Max Weber. The results of the study showed that businesses which took specific actions were able to become and remain big businesses and these actions were explained by the theories of Marx and Weber. The results of the study demonstrate the ability of classical sociological theory to explain macro-level social change. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801922/
Application of the Correlation Consistent Composite Approach to Biological Systems and Noncovalent Interactions
Advances in computing capabilities have facilitated the application of quantum mechanical methods to increasingly larger and more complex chemical systems, including weakly interacting and biologically relevant species. One such ab initio-based composite methodology, the correlation consistent composite approach (ccCA), has been shown to be reliable for the prediction of enthalpies of formation and reaction energies of main group species in the gas phase to within 1 kcal mol-1, on average, of well-established experiment, without dependence on experimental parameterization or empirical corrections. In this collection of work, ccCA has been utilized to determine the proton affinities of deoxyribonucleosides within an ONIOM framework (ONIOM-ccCA) and to predict accurate enthalpies of formation for organophosphorus compounds. Despite the complexity of these systems, ccCA is shown to result in enthalpies of formation to within ~2 kcal mol-1 of experiment and predict reliable reaction energies for systems with little to no experimental data. New applications for the ccCA method have also been introduced, expanding the utility of ccCA to solvated systems and complexes with significant noncovalent interactions. By incorporating the SMD solvation model into the ccCA formulation, the Solv-ccCA method is able to predict the pKa values of nitrogen systems to within 0.7 pKa unit (less than 1.0 kcal mol-1), overall. A hydrogen bonding constant has also been developed for use with weakly interacting dimers and small cluster compounds, resulting in ccCA interaction energies for water clusters and dimers of the S66 set to within 1.0 kcal mol-1 of well-established theoretical values. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801886/
Applications of Single Reference Methods to Multi-Reference Problems
Density functional theory is an efficient and useful method of solving single-reference computational chemistry problems, however it struggles with multi-reference systems. Modifications have been developed in order to improve the capabilities of density functional theory. In this work, density functional theory has been successfully applied to solve multi-reference systems with large amounts of non-dynamical correlation by use of modifications. It has also been successfully applied for geometry optimizations for lanthanide trifluorides. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801919/
An Assessment of Uncommon Titanium Binary Systems: Ti-Zn, Ti-Cu, and Ti-Sb
The current study focuses on phase stability and evolution in the titanium-zinc titanium-copper and titanium-antimony systems. The study utilized the Laser Engineering Net Shaping (LENS™) processing technique to deposit compositionally graded samples of three binary system in order to allow the assessment of phase stability and evolution as a function of composition and temperature the material is subjected to. Through LENS™ processing it was possible to create graded samples from Ti-xSb (up to 13wt%) and Ti-xCu (up to 16wt%). The LENS™ deposited gradient were solutionized, and step quenched to specific aging temperature, and the resulting microstructures and phase were characterized utilizing XRD, EDS, SEM, FIB and TEM. The Ti-Zn system proved incapable of being LENS™ deposited due to the low vaporization temperature of Zn; however, a novel processing approach was developed to drip liquid Zn onto Ti powder at temperatures above β transus temperature of Ti (882 ◦C) and below the vaporization temperature of Zn (907 ◦C). The product of this processing technique was characterized in a similar way as the graded LENS™ depositions. From measurements performed on Ti-Sb it seems that Sb could be a potential α stabilizer in Ti due to the presence of a mostly homogeneous α grains throughout the gradient; however, from XRD it can be understood that a titanium antimonide phase is present. From results obtained from the Ti-Zn samples, it can be surmised that the eutectoid reaction seems to be active, i.e. The eutectoid reaction is kinetically fast, as concluded by the presence of pearlitic structures. Finally, for the Ti-Cu system this work has been attempted to prove or disprove the existence of the Ti3Cu through the use of XRD and TEM SAD patterns. From XRD spectra collected there are peaks belonging to the Ti3Cu orthorhombic phase along with Ti2Cu and α-Ti phase. In addition to the Ti-Cu system displayed structures associated with divorced eutectoid decomposition mechanism, and at low undercooling seems to be prone to forming solid state dendrites. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc799482/
Associations Between Physical Fitness and Academic Achievement: A Meditational Analysis
Research has illustrated the interrelatedness of childhood physical fitness and psychological wellbeing, psychological wellbeing and academic achievement, as well as physical fitness and academic achievement. In this study, we proposed that psychological wellbeing (self-esteem and depression) serves as a mediator between physical fitness and academic achievement during adolescence. In a sample of middle school children (N = 1,530), significant correlations were found between all three variables (p.0001). A hierarchical regression analysis was performed to assess the associations between physical fitness, psychological wellbeing, and academic achievement. The regression analysis reported a significant partial mediation effect. The results of this study supported the proposed hypotheses, including a mechanism of psychological wellbeing partially mediating the relationship between physical fitness and academic achievement. The findings of this study support the importance of encouraging activities to promote both physical fitness and psychological wellbeing in schools. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc799486/
Atomistic Simulations of Deformation Mechanisms in Ultra-Light Weight Mg-Li Alloys
Mg alloys have spurred a renewed academic and industrial interest because of their ultra-light-weight and high specific strength properties. Hexagonal close packed Mg has low deformability and a high plastic anisotropy between basal and non-basal slip systems at room temperature. Alloying with Li and other elements is believed to counter this deficiency by activating non-basal slip by reducing their nucleation stress. In this work I study how Li addition affects deformation mechanisms in Mg using atomistic simulations. In the first part, I create a reliable and transferable concentration dependent embedded atom method (CD-EAM) potential for my molecular dynamics study of deformation. This potential describes the Mg-Li phase diagram, which accurately describes the phase stability as a function of Li concentration and temperature. Also, it reproduces the heat of mixing, lattice parameters, and bulk moduli of the alloy as a function of Li concentration. Most importantly, our CD-EAM potential reproduces the variation of stacking fault energy for basal, prismatic, and pyramidal slip systems that influences the deformation mechanisms as a function of Li concentration. This success of CD-EAM Mg-Li potential in reproducing different properties, as compared to literature data, shows its reliability and transferability. Next, I use this newly created potential to study the effect of Li addition on deformation mechanisms in Mg-Li nanocrystalline (NC) alloys. Mg-Li NC alloys show basal slip, pyramidal type-I slip, tension twinning, and two-compression twinning deformation modes. Li addition reduces the plastic anisotropy between basal and non-basal slip systems by modifying the energetics of Mg-Li alloys. This causes the solid solution softening. The inverse relationship between strength and ductility therefore suggests a concomitant increase in alloy ductility. A comparison of the NC results with single crystal deformation results helps to understand the qualitative and quantitative effect of Li addition in Mg on nucleation stress and fault energies of each deformation mode. The nucleation stress and fault energies of basal dislocations and compression twins in single crystal Mg-Li alloy increase while those for pyramidal dislocations and tension twinning decrease. This variation in respective values explains the reduction in plastic anisotropy and increase in ductility for Mg-Li alloys. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801888/
Automatic Language Identification for Metadata Records: Measuring the Effectiveness of Various Approaches
Automatic language identification has been applied to short texts such as queries in information retrieval, but it has not yet been applied to metadata records. Applying this technology to metadata records, particularly their title elements, would enable creators of metadata records to obtain a value for the language element, which is often left blank due to a lack of linguistic expertise. It would also enable the addition of the language value to existing metadata records that currently lack a language value. Titles lend themselves to the problem of language identification mainly due to their shortness, a factor which increases the difficulty of accurately identifying a language. This study implemented four proven approaches to language identification as well as one open-source approach on a collection of multilingual titles of books and movies. Of the five approaches considered, a reduced N-gram frequency profile and distance measure approach outperformed all others, accurately identifying over 83% of all titles in the collection. Future plans are to offer this technology to curators of digital collections for use. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801895/
The Best Medicine
The Best Medicine is an animated documentary that explores the true stories behind the live performances of stand-up comedians. The film juxtaposes live stand-up performances with candid interview footage combined with animation and illustration. Three subjects– Michael Burd, Casey Stoddard, and Jacob Kubon– discuss alcoholism, childhood abuse, and sexual anxiety, respectively. Their candid, intimate interviews reveal personal information, creating a new context with which to understand live stand-up comedy performance. This illustrates themes of finding humor in dark or painful circumstances and the cathartic nature writing and performance. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801938/
The Burner Project: Privacy and Social Control in a Networked World
As mobile phones become increasingly ubiquitous in today’s world, academic and public audiences alike are curious about the interaction between mobile technologies and social norms. To investigate this phenomenon, I examined how individuals use technology to actively manage their communication behaviors. Through a three-month research project on usage patterns of Burner, a mobile application, this thesis explores the relationships among technology, culture, and privacy. Burner is a service that equips individuals with the means to create, maintain, and/or dissolve social ties by providing temporary, disposable numbers to customers. The application offers a way to communicate without relying on a user’s personal phone number. In other words, Burner acts as a “privacy layer” for mobile phones. It also provides a valuable platform to examine how customers use the application as a strategy for communication management. This thesis represents a marriage of practice and theory: (1) As an applied enterprise, the project was constructed as a customer needs assessment intending to examine how the service was situated in the lives of its users. The findings have successfully been applied to my client’s company strategy and have led to a more informed customer approach. (2) As an academic endeavor, this research contributes to existing scholarship in anthropology, computer-mediated communication, privacy, and design. The results provide rich fodder for discussions about the impact of mobile communication and services. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801891/
La Búsqueda De La Identidad Femenina En Las Novelas De Dos Autoras Mexicanas
The novel is one means by which writers can provide examples of the possibilities for women in patriarchal societies to seek greater independence. Sabina Berman (1955- ) and Silvia Molina (1946- ) are modern day Mexican novelists whose writings support the betterment of the female condition in this Latin American society. This study focuses on these two authors and describes and analyzes several of their female protagonists who can be characterized as being in search of their self-identity and self-realization. The novels of interest are La Bobe (2006) and La Mujer que Buceó Dentro del Corazón del Mundo (2010) by Sabina Berman and La Mañana Debe Seguir Gris (1977) and El Amor Que Me Juraste (1998) by Silvia Molina. The theoretical framework used to analyze these novels is based on The Second Sex by Simone de Beauvoir and on the writings of the Mexican author Rosario Castellanos. These novels provide examples of how women can challenge patriarchal social norms in order to seek their identity as an individual and their self-realization. However, to do this, women must be willing to accept the risks and costs that may accompany this self-searching. By seeking identity women can satisfy their longings and desires, but at the same time this may also produce undesired results. Nevertheless, these novels show that women have the ability to seek their personal identity if they take the initiative to do so. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801916/
A Case Study of an Urban Charter School’s Journey of School Improvement: Organizational Theory, Institutional Learning and School Reform
The problem for this study was the need to increase and maintain in student achievement in charter schools. The purpose of this single-case study was to discover how an inner city charter school with a high percentage of at-risk students increased overall student achievement and attained acceptable performance status when faced simultaneously with administrative challenges and increases in state and federal standards. The participants for the single-case study included the school district’s superintendent, the high school principal, the dean of students, four faculty of the district, and one outside consultant appointed to work with the district by the state of Texas. The sampling for this study allowed for the opportunity to study in greater depth the choice of reform strategies and organizational structure designed to result in increased student achievement and student success over the course of two years. Since this was a single-case study of one charter school district, participants were referenced by the role in which they served. All district, campus, and participant names remained anonymous. The results showed the increased student achievement was made possible by several reform strategies and best practices. The primary reform strategies and best practices that had the greatest impact were consistent campus leadership and parent and community involvement with the campus. Mission and focus were secondary strategies that contributed to increasing teacher effectiveness and student achievement. All of the interviewees stated their work was “all about the kids” to support the theme of the common mission and focus the campus and district. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801878/
Classifying Pairwise Object Interactions: A Trajectory Analytics Approach
We have a huge amount of video data from extensively available surveillance cameras and increasingly growing technology to record the motion of a moving object in the form of trajectory data. With proliferation of location-enabled devices and ongoing growth in smartphone penetration as well as advancements in exploiting image processing techniques, tracking moving objects is more flawlessly achievable. In this work, we explore some domain-independent qualitative and quantitative features in raw trajectory (spatio-temporal) data in videos captured by a fixed single wide-angle view camera sensor in outdoor areas. We study the efficacy of those features in classifying four basic high level actions by employing two supervised learning algorithms and show how each of the features affect the learning algorithms’ overall accuracy as a single factor or confounded with others. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801901/
Co-Creating Value in Video Games: The Impact of Gender Identity and Motivations on Video Game Engagement and Purchase Intentions
When games were first developed for in-home use, they were primarily targeted almost exclusively at children and males. However, today’s marketplace manifests a more diverse population plays Internet-enabled games that can be played virtually anywhere. The average gamer is now 30 years old. Many gamers, obviously, are much older. Yet more strikingly, and more germane to this study’s purpose, 47% of the U.S. gamer population is female, as compared to 40% in 2010. Despite these trends the gaming industry remains a male-dominated culture. The marketer’s job is to facilitate game engagement and to motivate gamers to play. The notion of “engagement” is not new in business. The term was developed in the last decade. Many studies were devoted to understand, explain, and define the term. It suggests that within interactive, dynamic business environments, consumer engagement (CE) represents a strategic position that companies can use to enhance their sales growth, competitive advantage, and profitability. Moreover, there are three levels of engagement in any experiential consumption (i.e., playing video game): presence, flow, and psychological absorption. The findings of this study affirm that consumer engagement, including presence, flow and psychological absorption are explanatory factors that impact gamer’s purchase intentions. Our results show that consumers experience different mental engagement in an interactive environment (i.e., playing video games) compared to passive environments (i.e., visiting a website). These findings change our understanding of consumers’ engagement and flow state. We also found that male and female gamers experience different engagement level. However, we did not find a significant result that masculinity and femininity traits impact gamers’ engagement or intention. We argue that macroeconomic factors results in sales fluctuation may have resulted in reject in this hypothesis. Thus, marketers shed a light into the consumer’s interactive environment and flow states in that environments. Consumers not only determine the value in using a product as Vargo and Lusch suggested, but they also create that value. Also, consumer experience is an ongoing process that does not have a specific point to start, making the value creation a temporally accumulative process that includes past, present, and future experience. Therefore, the value created by consumers is not created while physically interacting with a device to play, but it may include imagined and indirect interaction with the product. Therefore, consumers (i.e., gamers) need to maintain a balance between presence and psychological absorption (i.e., flow) to get the best experience in play video gaming. Empirical evidence suggest that consumers’ flow state engagement is the most important variable in determining their ensuing purchase intention for video games, regardless of game genre. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc799485/
Combinatorial Assessment of the Influence of Composition and Exposure Time on the Oxidation Behavior and Concurrent Oxygen-induced Phase Transformations of Binary Ti-x Systems
The relatively low oxidation resistance and subsequent surface embrittlement have often limited the use of titanium alloys in elevated temperature structural applications. Although extensive effort is spent to investigate the high temperature oxidation performance of titanium alloys, the studies are often constrained to complex technical titanium alloys and neither the mechanisms associated with evolution of the oxide scale nor the effect of oxygen ingress on the microstructure of the base metal are well-understood. In addition lack of systematic oxidation studies across a wider domain of the alloy composition has complicated the determination of composition-mechanism-property relationships. Clearly, it would be ideal to assess the influence of composition and exposure time on the oxidation resistance, independent of experimental variabilities regarding time, temperature and atmosphere as the potential source of error. Such studies might also provide a series of metrics (e.g., hardness, scale, etc) that could be interpreted together and related to the alloy composition. In this thesis a novel combinatorial approach was adopted whereby a series of compositionally graded specimens, (Ti-xMo, Ti-xCr, Ti-xAl and Ti-xW) were prepared using Laser Engineered Net Shaping (LENS™) technology and exposed to still-air at 650 °C. A suite of the state-of-the-art characterization techniques were employed to assess several aspects of the oxidation reaction as a function of local average composition including: the operating oxidation mechanisms; the structure and composition of the oxides; the oxide adherence and porosity; the thickness of the oxide layers; the depth of oxygen ingress; and microstructural evolution of the base material just below the surface but within the oxygen-enriched region. The results showed that for the Ti-Mo, Ti-Al and Ti-W systems a parabolic oxidation rate law is obeyed in the studied composition-time domain while Ti-Cr system experiences a rapid breakaway oxidation regime at low solute concentrations. The only titanium oxide phase present in the scale for all the binary systems was identified as rutile (TiO2) and formation of multiphase oxide scales TiO2+Al2O3 in Ti-Al system and TiO2+TiCr2 in Ti-Cr system was observed. A thermodynamic framework has been used to rationalize the oxygen-induced subsurface microstructural transformations including: homogeneous precipitation of nano-scaled β particles and discontinuous precipitation of +β phases in Ti-Mo and Ti-W system, evolution of TiCr2 intermetallic phase in Ti-Cr system and ordering phase transformation in Ti-Al system. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801898/
Community Development at Heronswood Botanical Garden
The overall main goal of this research is to assist with the planning and creation of an ethnobotanical addition at the Heronswood Garden, a botanical garden located in northwest Washington state recently purchased by the Port Gamble S’Klallam Tribe. Methods included a three month long ethnographic study of Heronswood Garden as an official intern, and conducting a needs assessment that primarily employed participant observation and semi-structured open-ended interviews with all garden employees. Information revealed through the research includes causal issues behind a lack of community participation at the garden, elaboration on the solutions to various issues facilitated by negotiating and combining the views and opinions of the garden’s employees, and author reflections on the needs assessment report and the project as a whole. This research connects itself with and utilizes the methodologies and theories from applied anthropology, environmental anthropology, and environmental science to provide contemporary perspective into the subject of preserving or preventing the loss of biodiversity, language diversity, and sociocultural diversity. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc799524/
A Comparative Analysis of State Funds on Student Achievement of Economically Disadvantaged Elementary Schools in Independent School Districts and Charter Schools in the State of Texas
The purpose of this study was to evaluate the relationship between the instructional outcomes in the independent school districts and charter schools in relation to the expenditure of public funds for instruction and total operating expenditures from the general fund. The study considered Texas elementary charter schools and independent school districts, whose school populations were identified as having greater than or equal to 50% of economically disadvantaged students, according to the Texas Academic Excellence Indicator System (AEIS). The study made use of multiple regression and was an ex post facto cross-sectional analysis utilizing production function theory. The study’s outcomes reported the difference in student achievement between elementary schools in independent public school districts and charter schools were small to negligible for math and reading achievement. The study also reported, there is no statistically significant difference in per pupil expenditure of public funds between elementary schools in independent public school districts and charter schools. Furthermore, there is no statistically significant relationship between student achievement and per pupil expenditure of public funds on elementary schools in independent public school districts and charter schools. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc799550/
Computational Studies of C–h/c–c Manipulation Utilizing Transition Metal Complexes
Density Functional Theory (DFT) is an effective tool for studying diverse metal systems. Presented herein are studies of a variety of metal systems, which can be applied to accomplish transformations that are currently difficult/impossible to achieve. The specific topics studied utilizing DFT include: 1) C–H bond activation via an Earth-abundant transition metal complex, 2) C–H bond deprotonation via an alkali metal superbase, 3) and amination/aziridination reactions utilizing a CuI reagent. Using DFT, the transformation to methanol (CH3OH) from methane (CH4) was examined. The transition metal systems studied for this transformation included a model FeII complex. This first-row transition metal is an economical, Earth-abundant metal. The ligand set for this transformation includes a carbonyl ligand in one set of complexes as well as a phosphite ligand in another. The 3d Fe metal shows the ability to convert alkyls/aryls to their oxidized counterpart in an energetically favorable manner. Also, “superbasic” alkali metal amides were investigated to perform C—H bond cleavage. Toluene was the substrate of interest with Cs chosen to be the metal of interest because of the highly electropositive nature of this alkali metal. These highly electrophilic Cs metal systems allow for very favorable C—H bond scission with a toluene substrate. Finally, the amination and aziridination of C–H and C=C bonds, respectively, by a CuI reagent was studied. The mechanism was investigated using DFT calculations. Presently, these mechanisms involving the use of coinage metals are debated. Our DFT simulations shed some insight into how these transformations occur and ultimately how they can be manipulated. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801892/
A Construct Validity Analysis of the Work Perceptions Profile Data
As work environments become more complex and demanding, organizations are becoming more interested in measuring the impact of their human resource development programs and initiatives. With this increased attention on data and measurement, human resource professionals have been encouraged to utilize data collection and data analysis techniques to make more objective and rationale human capital decisions and to verify business impact. As a result, the human resource profession has seen a significant increase in the use of surveys to measure anything from training effectiveness to the efficacy of recruitment procedures. The increase in the use of survey instruments requires that more focused attention is placed on the reliability and validity of data from any instrument used to make important human resource and business decisions. One instrument that is currently being used to measure career plateaus and job fit is the Work Perceptions Profile. The purpose of this research study was to conduct a construct validity analysis of the Work Perceptions Profile data and to determine the factor structure of data from its items. The data in this analysis supported a two-factor model structure with the first factor measuring Work Characteristics and a second factor measuring Performance. The results of this analysis will be helpful in exploring further how employees perceive their work place, their careers and their relationships with others within the organization. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc799499/
Convenience to the Cataloger or Convenience to the User? An Exploratory Study of Catalogers’ Judgment
This mixed-method study explored cataloger’s judgment through the presence of text as entered by catalogers for the 11 electronic resource items during the National Libraries test for Resource Description and Access (RDA). Although the literature discusses cataloger’s judgment and suggests that cataloging practice based on new cataloging code RDA will more heavily rely on cataloger’s judgment, the topic of cataloger’s judgment in RDA cataloging was not formally studied. The purpose of this study was to study the differences and similarities in the MARC records created as a part of the RDA National Test and to determine if the theory of bounded rationality could explain cataloger’s judgment based on the constructs of cognitive and temporal limits. This goal was addressed through a content analysis of the MARC records and various statistical tests (Pearson’s Chi-square, Fisher’s Exact, and Cramer’s V). Analysis of 217 MARC records was performed on seven elements of the bibliographic record. This study found that there were both similarities and differences among the various groups of participants, and there are indications that both support and refute the assertion that catalogers make decisions based on the constructs of time and cognitive ability. Future research is needed to be able to determine if bounded rationality is able to explain cataloger’s judgment; however, there are indicators that both support and refute this assertion. The findings from this research have implications for the cataloging community through the provision of training opportunities for catalogers, evaluating workflows, ensuring the proper indexing of bibliographic records for discovery, and recommended edits to RDA. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc799476/
Critical Study of Two Piano Transcriptions by August Stradal and the Transcriptions’ Sources: Alterations to the Score Based on Historical Evidence and Artistic Judgment
The fact that a number of pianists of the past two centuries adapted, embellished, and rearranged piano works for performance, be these original works or transcriptions, has been well documented throughout history. This thought, in addition to the fact that Stradal’s scores needed revision, encouraged me to make alterations to Stradal’s transcriptions and served as a strong incentive to write the current study. In it, I will comment on the alterations performed to segments of Stradal’s piano transcriptions of Wagner’s Schluβ der letzten Aufzuges (End of the last Act) from Siegfried and Trauermusik aus dem letzten Aufzug (Siegfried’s Funeral March) from Götterdämmerung. These changes have the purpose of reflecting in the piano as closely as possible the sonorous reality of the transcriptions’ operatic sources and, by doing so, making Stradal’s arrangements more effective for performance. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801932/
Cross-cultural Differences in the Presentation of Depressive Symptoms
Epidemiological studies show that China has a lower prevalence rate of major depression than that of Western countries. The disparity in prevalence is commonly attributed to the tendency of Chinese to somatize depression. Empirical evidence of Chinese somatization has yielded mixed results. The present study thus aimed to 1) examine differences in somatic and psychological symptom reporting between Chinese from Macau and Americans in America and 2) identify cultural and psychological variables that would predict somatization. Independent and interdependent self-construals, sociotropy, and emotional approach coping were hypothesized to predict somatization of depression. Participants included 353 Chinese and 491 American college students who completed self-report measures online. Contrary to prediction, results indicated that Americans endorsed a higher proportion of somatic symptoms than Chinese did. Sociotropy predicted both relative endorsement and severity of somatic symptoms for the American sample, whereas emotional expression coping was related to somatization in the Chinese sample. The findings challenge the common assumption of greater Chinese somatization and highlight the importance of context in understanding the relationships between somatization and cultural and psychological variables. Implications of the present study and future directions are discussed. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801937/
Cytotoxicity and Functional Toxicity of Mefloquine and Search for Protective Compounds
Mefloquine hydrochloride is an antimalarial agent that has been used for the past 40 years. Numerous reports of neurological side effects have recently led the FDA to issue a strong warning regarding long-term neurological effects. This warning lead to the U.S. Army’s Special Forces and other components to discontinue its use in July of 2013. Despite reported adverse side effects, mefloquine remains in circulation and is recommended to travelers going to specific Asian countries. Mefloquine has been used as a treatment for those already infected with the malaria parasite (blood concentrations ranging from 2.1 to 23 µM), and as prophylaxis (blood concentrations averaging 3.8 µM) (Dow 2003). The purpose of this study was to quantify Mefloquine’s toxicity using spontaneously active nerve cell networks growing on microelectrode arrays in vitro and to identify compounds that alleviate or reduce toxic effects. The current literature on mefloquine toxicity is lacking electrophysiological data. These data will contribute to research on the mechanism of adverse side effects associated with mefloquine use. Sequential titration experiments were performed by adding increasing concentrations of mefloquine solution to cultured neurons. Network responses were quantified and reversibility was examined. In each network, activity decreases were normalized as a percent of reference activity yielding a mean IC50 value of 5.97 ± 0.44 (SD) µM (n=6). After total activity loss, no activity was recovered with two successive medium changes. To test for network response desensitization resulting from sequential applications over 5-6 hr periods, one-point titrations at varying concentrations were conducted with fresh networks. These experiments yielded a single concentration response curve with an IC50 value of 2.97 µM. This represents a statistically significant shift (p < 0.0001) to lower concentrations of mefloquine, demonstrating that sequential applications result in network desensitization. After mefloquine exposures, cells were evaluated for irreversible cytotoxic damage. Over a 12-hour period under 6 µM mefloquine, process beading and granulation of somal cytoplasm were observed. At 8 µM mefloquine cell stress was apparent after only 10 minutes with major glial damage and process beading at 120 minutes. In this study, quinolinic acid served as a neuroprotectant at 20 µM. There have been multiple studies on the endogenous concentrations of quinolinic acid and current literature is quite variable. Immunocompromised individuals have some of the highest blood levels of quinolinic acid (up to 20 µM). With 30 min pre-applications of quinolinic acid, the mefloquine IC50 value shifted from 5.97 ± 0.44 µM (n=6), to 9.28 ± 0.55 µM (n=3). This represents a statistically significant change to higher mefloquine concentrations and demonstrates neuroprotection. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801913/
Deleterious Synergistic Effects of Concurrent Magnetic Field and Superparamagnetic (Fe3O4) Nanoparticle Exposures on CHO-K1 Cell Line
While many investigations have been performed to establish a better understanding of the effects that magnetic fields and nanoparticles have on cells, the fundamental mechanisms behind the interactions are still yet unknown, and investigations on concurrent exposure are quite limited in scope. This study was therefore established to investigate the biological impact of concurrent exposure to magnetic nanoparticles and extremely-low frequency magnetic fields using an in-vitro CHO-K1 cell line model, in an easily reproducible manner to establish grounds for further in-depth mechanistic, proteomic, and genomic studies. Cells were cultured and exposed to 10nm Fe3O4 nanoparticles, and DC or low frequency (0Hz, 50Hz, and 100Hz) 2.0mT magnetic fields produced by a Helmholtz coil pair. The cells were then observed under confocal fluorescence microscopy, and subject to MTT biological assay to determine the synergistic effects of these concurrent exposures. No effects were observed on cell morphology or microtubule network; however, cell viability was observed to decrease more drastically under the combined effects of magnetic field and nanoparticle exposures, as compared to independent exposures alone. It was concluded that no significant difference was observed between the types of magnetic fields, and their effects on the nanoparticle exposed cells, but quite clearly there are deleterious synergistic effects of these concurrent magnetic field and nanoparticle exposure conditions. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc799479/
The Descriptive Paleontology and Applied Ichthyoarchaeology of the Ponsipa Fauna
The archaeology of the Northern Rio Grande region of New Mexico has recently received an increased amount scholarly attention. In particular, understanding past trends in demographics, agricultural productivity, violence, and social networks have been primary goals of archaeological research. Understanding patterns in animal exploitation has, however, received far less attention due to a small yet growing regional zooarchaeological database. Through the identification of animal remains from a site called Ponsipa (occupied ca. A.D. 1300 to 1600), this thesis adds one large dataset to this growing database. In addition, this thesis expands on the pre-impoundment distribution of an endangered native freshwater fish species in the state of New Mexico called the blue sucker (Cycleptus elongatus). The blue sucker is a unique fish that is currently experiencing range reduction across all of its known North American distribution due to anthropogenic habitat fragmentation and degradation. Skeletal remains that were identified from Ponsipa represent the farthest known northern record of its occurrence in the state of New Mexico and highlight the extent of range restriction of the species in the area. The data concerning the historical biogeography of the blue sucker from Ponsipa have implications for the effective conservation and restoration of blue sucker located in the Rio Grande Basin. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc799491/
Design of Multi Band Microwave Devices Using Coupled Line Transmission Lines
Multi band technology helps in getting multiple operating frequencies using a single microwave device. This thesis presents the design of dual and tri band microwave devices using coupled transmission line structures. Chapter 2 presents the design of a novel dual band transmission line structure using coupled lines. In chapter 3, Design of a dual band branch line coupler and a dual band Wilkinson power divider are proposed using the novel dual band transmission line structure presented in the previous chapter. In chapter 4, Design of a tri band transmission line structure by extending the dual band structure is presented. The Conclusion and future work are presented in chapter 5. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801903/
The Devil and the Details: Negotiating Virtuosity, Agency, and Authenticity in Karlheinz Stockhausen’s Kathinkas Gesang als Luzifers Requiem for Solo Flute
Karlheinz Stockhausen’s Kathinkas Gesang als Luzifers Requiem presents mental, physical, and musical challenges that go beyond the usual expectations of an instrumentalist, extending and redefining the traditional idea of virtuosity. Using firsthand performance experience, score and recording study, and flutist interviews, this document explores the effects of some of these heightened demands and argues that the particular performance situation presented by Kathinkas Gesang brings up critical questions about the performer’s role, the nature of performance and of the musical work, and the existence of an authoritatively “authentic” interpretation. Employing an expanded definition of virtuosity that includes interpretation and encompasses both choices and actions, the document discusses the extensions of virtuosity into two main areas: first, memory; and second, staging and movement, covering both practical suggestions and larger implications. Finally, it examines how the performer’s negotiation of these challenges relates to questions about authenticity and agency. Performance is defined here as a creative and collaborative act, not attempting to duplicate previous performances or recordings, but rather to give the best realization of the piece possible in the given circumstances, according to the individual’s interpretation of the score’s directions. There is no single “authentic” interpretation, but rather a rich multiplicity of possibilities, and the performer’s creative agency and personal authenticity are necessary for the full realization of the work. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc799513/
Disrupting the Discourse of the Other: a Transformative Learning Study of African Art
The primary question of this study is: How does the disruption of African art discourse influence a group of university students’ perceptions of African aesthetics? This inquiry developed from previous studies on the exclusion of modern and contemporary African art in Western art museums. Through the theoretical lens of Postcolonial Theory and Critical Multiculturalism, this research conceptualizes the dominance of traditional African art in art museums, art history, and art education as a Western hegemonic discourse that normalizes perceptions of Africa and African aesthetics as the fixed primitive Other. Thus, this research applied Action Research (AR) methodology coupled with Transformative Learning Theory (TL) to disrupt the discourse of African art; with the purpose of affecting positive changes in perceptions of African aesthetics. The participants for this study were 10 students in a course (Art 1301 Honors Art Appreciation) I instructed at the University of North Texas in the fall (September–December) 2013 semester. Data was collected, analyzed, and interpreted from participants’ assignments and my research journal. This study comprised a dual enquiry on: 1. Discourse and Meaning-making; and 2. Disruption and Transformation. First, the study analyzed students’ perceptions of African aesthetics from their learning experience of traditional African art in an art museum. The findings affirmed traditional African art at the museum as a discourse of Africa as the Other of the West. Secondly, the study analyzed how students’ perceptions were influenced from their experience (in my classroom) of learning histories of modern and contemporary African art that disrupt the authenticity of traditional African art. The findings revealed that 80% of participants developed positive transformations. This research demonstrates how art education grounded in critical theory and transformative learning subverted African art as the discourse of the Other, developed students’ understandings of the multiple realities of Africa and African aesthetics, and encouraged positive transformations in students’ perceptions of African aesthetics. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801948/
Distributed Frameworks Towards Building an Open Data Architecture
Data is everywhere. The current Technological advancements in Digital, Social media and the ease at which the availability of different application services to interact with variety of systems are causing to generate tremendous volumes of data. Due to such varied services, Data format is now not restricted to only structure type like text but can generate unstructured content like social media data, videos and images etc. The generated Data is of no use unless been stored and analyzed to derive some Value. Traditional Database systems comes with limitations on the type of data format schema, access rates and storage sizes etc. Hadoop is an Apache open source distributed framework that support storing huge datasets of different formatted data reliably on its file system named Hadoop File System (HDFS) and to process the data stored on HDFS using MapReduce programming model. This thesis study is about building a Data Architecture using Hadoop and its related open source distributed frameworks to support a Data flow pipeline on a low commodity hardware. The Data flow components are, sourcing data, storage management on HDFS and data access layer. This study also discuss about a use case to utilize the architecture components. Sqoop, a framework to ingest the structured data from database onto Hadoop and Flume is used to ingest the semi-structured Twitter streaming json data on to HDFS for analysis. The data sourced using Sqoop and Flume have been analyzed using Hive for SQL like analytics and at a higher level of data access layer, Hadoop has been compared with an in memory computing system using Spark. Significant differences in query execution performances have been analyzed when working with Hadoop and Spark frameworks. This integration helps for ingesting huge Volumes of streaming json Variety data to derive better Value based analytics using Hive and Spark. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801911/
Down and Out: A Novel
A creative dissertation consisting of two parts: a novel and a critical preface. The critical preface, titled “Novel without Falsehood” deals directly with David Shields’s Reality Hunger, touching on issues of reality as it pertains to truth, writing, fiction, and contemporary culture. The novel is entitled Down and Out and follows the fortunes of a small town in Arkansas before, during, and after its sole source of employment ceases to exist. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc799551/
Dual-Band Quarter Wavelength and Half Wavelength Microstrip Transmission Line Design
The thesis represents the design for dual-band quarter wavelength and half wavelength microstrip transmission line. Chapter 2 proposed the design of a novel dual-band asymmetric pi-shaped short-circuited quarter wavelength microstrip transmission line working at frequencies 1GHz and 1.55 GHz for 50Ω transmission line and at frequencies 1GHz and 1.43GHz for 60Ω transmission line. Chapter 3 proposed the design of a novel dual-band quarter wavelength microstrip transmission line with asymmetrically allocated open stubs and short-circuited stubs working at frequencies 1GHz and 1.32GHz. Chapter 4 proposed the design of dual-band pi-shaped open stub half wavelength microstrip transmission line working at frequencies 1GHz and 2.07GHz. Numerical simulations are performed both in HyperLynx 3D EM and in circuit simulator ADS for all of the proposed designs to measure the return loss (S11) and insertion loss (S12) in dB and phase response for S12 in degree. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801931/
Effect of Friction-stir Processing on the Wear Behavior of Titanium (Ti-1al-8v-5fe) and Stainless Steel (A-286) Alloys
The effect of friction stir processing (FSP) on the mechanical wear behavior was investigated for Ti-1Al-8V-5Fe (Ti-185) and stainless steel (Incoloy® A-286) alloys. The Ti-185 and A-286 alloys were tested in different processing conditions, including as rolled (AR), AR+FSP, and AR+FSP+aged. A high frequency reciprocating rig was used to simulate fretting-type wear of these alloys at room temperature. The Vickers micro-hardness and wear rates were calculated and compared for each processing condition. It was determined that along with increasing hardness in the stir zones, FSP resulted in improved wear resistance for both alloys. Specifically, wear rates in the stir zones were reduced to lowest values of 1.6 x 10-5 and 5.8 x 10-7 mm3/N·m for the AR+FSP+aged Ti-185 and A-286 alloys, respectively, despite lower hardness for A-286 alloy. Mechanistic studies were conducted to determine the reason behind these improvements in wear resistance and the effect of FSP on the microstructural evolution during wear. For the Ti-185 alloy, x-ray diffraction revealed that there was a phase transformation from β-Ti (AR+FSP) to α-Ti (AR+FSP+aged). This phase decomposition resulted in the harder and stiffer Ti phase responsible for lowering of wear rate in Ti-185. While x-ray diffraction confirmed the A-286 alloy retains its austenitic structure for all conditions, scanning electron microscopy revealed completely different wear track morphology structures. There was increased coarse abrasion (galling) with the AR+aged A-286 alloy compared to the much finer-scale abrasion with the AR+FSP+aged alloy, which was responsible for smaller and less abrasive wear debris, and hence lower wear rate. Furthermore, cross-sectional focused ion beam microscopy studies inside the stir zone of AR+FSP+aged A-286 alloy determined that a) increased micro-hardness was due to FSP-induced microscopic grain refinement, and b) the corresponding wear rate decrease was due to even finer wear-induced grain refinement. With both effects combined, the level of damage and surface fatigue wear was suppressed resulting in lowering of the wear rate. In contrast, the absence of FSP-induced grain refinement in the AR+aged A-286 alloy resulted in lower hardness and increasing wear rate. In addition, micro-Raman spectroscopy inside the stir wear zone determined that the wear debris contained metal oxides of Fe3O4, Cr2O3, and NiO, but were a consequence and not the cause of low wear. Overall, FSP of titanium and stainless steel alloys resulted in lowering of wear rates suggesting it is a viable surface engineering technique to target and mitigate site-specific wear. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801955/
The Effects of a Psychosocial Environment on College Women’s Exercise Regulations and Social Physique Anxiety
A positive psychosocial intervention comprised of high autonomy support, task-involvement, and caring was implemented in physical activity classes to examine its effects on college women’s basic psychological needs (i.e. autonomy, competence, relatedness), exercise regulations (i.e. external, introjected, identified, integrated, intrinsic) and social physique anxiety (SPA). We hypothesized that at the end of the semester, participants in the intervention group (N = 73) would report greater need satisfaction, more self-determined regulations and less SPA than participants in the non-intervention group (N = 60). At T1 and T2, both the intervention and non-intervention participants reported “agreeing” with experiencing an autonomy supportive, task-involving, and caring environment. Furthermore, both groups at T1 and T2 reported moderate SPA. No significant group differences were found at T1. At T2, significant group differences were observed in the intervention and non-intervention groups’ report of external regulation and intrinsic regulation. The results suggests that group exercise instructors are capable of creating a positive psychosocial environment to enhance students’ intrinsic motivation. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc799470/
The Effects of Neighboring, Social Networks, and Collective Efficacy on Crime Victimization: an Alternative to the Systemic Model
The systemic model posits that informal social control directly reduces crime victimization and social networks indirectly reduce crime victimization through informal social control. While empirical testing of the systemic model advanced the theory, important analytical issues remain. First, social networks are inconsistently conceptualized and measured. Second, the conceptual relationship between social networks and informal social control remains unclear. This study addresses these issues by testing an alternative to the systemic model, including new constructs and hypotheses. The goal is to develop better indicators for the model and refine the theory, rethinking and deepening the existing theory about neighborhood effects on crime victimization. The data come from the 2002-2003 Seattle Neighborhoods and Crime Survey (N=2,200). Structural equation modeling (SEM), a multivariate statistical technique, was used to analyze these data. The SEM included five latent constructs (neighboring, neighborhood and non-neighborhood social networks, collective efficacy, and crime victimization) and six social structural variables (racially homogeneous neighborhood, resident tenure, household income, family disruption, male, and non-white ethnicity). One of my 9 hypotheses was supported; the remaining hypotheses were partly supported. The results support my argument that the systemic model is too simplistic, but the relationships among the variables are not exactly as I hypothesized. The results provide insight into the complexities of the systemic model and areas for future research. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801962/
Estimation of Air Emissions During Production Phase from Active Oil and Gas Wells in the Barnett Shale Basin: 2010-2013
The Barnett shale basin, the largest onshore gas field in the state of Texas, mainly produces natural gas. The basin’s oil and gas productions have dramatically increased over the past two decades with the enhancement via shale fracturing (fracking) technology. However, recent studies suggest that air emissions from shale fracking have significantly contributed to the growing air pollution problem in North Texas. In this study, air emissions from the Barnett shale basin during the production phase of the oil and gas activities (once the product is collected from the wells) are quantified. Oil and gas production data were acquired from the Texas Railroad Commission for the baseline years of 2010 through 2013. Methodology from prior studies on shale basins approved by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality was employed in this study and the emission inventories from the production phase sources were quantified. Accordingly, the counties with the most gas operations in the basin, Tarrant, Johnson, Denton and Wise, were found to be the highest emitters of air pollutants. Tarrant County was responsible for the highest emitted NOx (42,566 tons) and CO (17,698 tons) in the basin, while Montague County released the maximum VOC emissions (87,601 tons) during the study period. Amongst the concerned emitted pollutants, VOC was the largest emitted pollutant during the study period (417,804 tons), followed by NOx (126,691 tons) and CO (47,884 tons). Significant Sources of air emissions include: storage tanks, wellhead compressor engines, and pneumatic devices. Storage tanks and pneumatic devices contributed to about 62% and 28% of the total VOC emissions, respectively. Whereas, wellhead compressor engines are primarily responsible for about 97% of the total NOx emissions. Finally, in Tarrant, Wise and Denton counties, the emissions increased during the study period due to increase in the oil and gas production, while Johnson County’s emission contribution declined throughout the study period. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc799523/
An Evaluation of Matrix Training Approaches for Teaching Compound Labels to Toddlers
Matrix training techniques arrange instruction for stimulus relations that facilitate emergent responding to novel stimulus arrangements, which is a phenomenon known as recombinative generalization. The current study compared two common matrix training approaches, an overlapping (OV) design and a non-overlapping (NOV) design, with respect to arranging relations targeted for training. Two, typically-developing toddlers were taught compound action-object labels in either an OV or NOV matrix training design. Results suggest that an OV matrix design facilitates recombinative generalization more effectively than a NOV design. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801954/
An Evaluation of Reinforcement Effects of Preferred Items During Discrete-trial Instruction
This study compared the relative reinforcing efficacy of high-preferred and low-preferred stimuli, as determined by two types of preference assessments, on acquisition rates in three children diagnosed with an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). The study also evaluated the indirect effects of preference on students’ stereotypy and problem behavior during instructional periods. Participants were presented with a task and provided high or low-preferred stimuli contingent upon correct responding. Results showed that acquisition occurred more rapidly in the highly preferred condition for some participants. Higher rates of problem behavior occurred in the low preferred condition for all participants. These results highlight the importance of utilizing preference assessment procedures to identify and deliver high-preferred items in skill acquisition procedures for individuals with ASD. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801884/
Evoking the Mystery: A Pedagogical Method to Enable an Advanced Violinist to Master George Crumb’s Four Nocturnes (Night Music II)
For more than three centuries, violin pedagogical practices have been extensively developed towards music covering the common practice period. However, a problem arises when a violin student performing avant-garde music needs to find realistic solutions to problems that are not addressed in the standard repertoire. This critical essay offers a pedagogical approach to a work that fits well within this paradigm: Four Nocturnes (Night Music II), George Crumb’s only published work for violin and piano duo. The multi-dimensional aspect of this avant-garde work requires an equally multi-faceted approach to overcoming the inherent technical hurdles. Through practical illustrations and concise explanations, musical examples indicate how the score may be re-notated and simplified to create a preliminary step towards advancing to the original notation. Borrowing from the methodology of Otakar Ševčík and other leading twentieth-century violin pedagogues, the author shows how students can modify their approach to fit contextually in the realm of avant-garde music. Students who approach the work with this methodology will find it helpful in eliminating many of the potential pitfalls that they are likely to encounter. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801940/
Examining Self-efficacy in Community College Adjunct Faculty
Though professional development interventions are widespread in higher education, administrators often do not formally assess their effectiveness, particularly in relation to teacher self-efficacy. The purposes of this study were to determine if any statistically significant difference existed between the self-efficacy scores of adjunct faculty participants in a community college’s professional development program and nonparticipants and to identify the variables with a statistically significant relationship with self-efficacy. A modified version of the Teachers’ Sense of Efficacy Scale (TSES) was administered to 21 adjunct faculty participants in Lone Star College’s Adjunct Certification Program (ACP) and 312 adjunct faculty not currently participating in the program. A demographic questionnaire development by the researcher was also administered. Independent variables of the demographic questionnaire included gender, ethnicity, age, K-12 teaching experience, highest degree earned, subject taught, years of college teaching experience, and number of courses taught each semester. Paired t-test results indicated statistically significant differences in Efficacy in Instructional Strategies for adjunct participants in the ACP program. No significant differences were found for Efficacy in Student Engagement and Efficacy in Classroom Management. Multiple regression analyses indicated that gender has a statistically significant relationship to Efficacy Instructional Strategies. A statistically significant relationship was found for race for Efficacy in Classroom Management. Finally, analysis also indicated a positive relationship between race and gender for Efficacy in Student Engagement. No other statistically significant relationships were found across the other demographic variables. Findings of this study revealed that the ACP increased teacher self-efficacy across two of the three dimensions of the TSES indicating that the professional development intervention had a positive effect on the efficacy of its participants. The present study contributes to the research on teacher self-efficacy, adjunct faculty and professional development interventions. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801926/
Executive Information Seeking and the Corporate Library
This study began with an interest in corporate libraries and a genuine curiosity in the information preferences and resources valued by executive leaders at JET Aircraft Co. Executive information preferences and the downward trend in special libraries initiated the investigation of information seeking among executive leaders and yielded the inquiry: What resources do JET Aircraft Co. executives value when they need information? Employing an ethnographic approach, this study investigated what JET Aircraft Co. executives know about information resources, what they believe about information resources, and how they act when they require information. While JET Aircraft Co. maintained a special corporate library called the Company Research Library (CRL), the purpose of this study was to determine what resources were of value to executives at JET Aircraft Co., understanding that the CRL may or may not be a resource executives’ value. As a byproduct, this study also sought to establish executive information preferences and perceptions of the CRL. Information seeking at the executive level, studied through an ethnographic lens, provided insight into how executives at JET Aircraft Co. work and what they prefer, and it established a baseline for the Company Research Library’s position among the resources valued by executives. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801910/
Exploring the College Pathways of Asian American Community College Students and the Model Minority Myth
Contrary to the model minority myth that portrays Asian Americans as academic all-stars over-represented in elite four-year institutions, half of all Asian American college students do in fact attend community colleges, and many experience myriad challenges. This exploratory study investigated the community college pathways of Asian American community college students, the role of family and culture in shaping expectations for higher education, and participants’ perceptions of the model minority myth and the degree to which this myth influenced their college experiences. Institutional practices and policies, or lack thereof, that support the success of this highly diverse population were also studied. Purposeful sampling was used to gather a sample of 28 students, who self-identified as Asian American and attended one of the three largest community college districts located in North Texas. The sample included 16 males and 12 females, whose ages ranged from 18 to 49 years old, with a mean age of 24. Data collection involved a demographic questionnaire and semi-structured individual interviews. The participants represented 13 different ethnicities, and nine were members of more than one ethnic or racial group. Ten participants were foreign-born citizens, and all of the participants had at least one foreign-born parent. Qualitative data provided description rich information that shed light on the expectations, experiences, and views of Asian American community college students, a virtually unstudied population. Consistent with current literature on Asian American college students, the findings suggest many Asian American community college students struggle with tremendous cultural and familial pressures for succeeding academically, and many described their experiences with racial microaggressions related to model minority stereotypes that they perceived their peers and instructors to have held. Recommendations for policy and practice designed to improve educational outcomes for Asian American community college students are addressed. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc799483/
Exploring the Relationships Between Faculty Beliefs and Technology Preferences
All too often faculty are asked to implement technology into their teaching without the knowledge necessary to use the technology effectively. Due to the evolution of technology in everyday settings, students have come to expect to be engaged through technological means. This often creates undue stress on faculty members. The purpose of this study is to investigate technology integration by exploring the relationships between a faculty member’s technology preferences and educational beliefs. Through a mixed method, this study attempts to address the question of why faculty use the types of technology they do. More importantly, this study investigates if a faculty member’s educational beliefs have any influence on the technology they choose to use. Thirty-two medical, clinical, and healthcare faculty members participated in the study. They responded to a Teaching Perspectives Inventory (TPI) survey and a Technology Preferences survey with open-ended questions. Data analysis revealed multiple statistically significant findings between different beliefs and different types of technology. The results indicated that personal epistemic beliefs influence the types of technology faculty use. The technology choices faculty make are largely related to tools they are comfortable with and ones they believe effectively fit their teaching materials. The study also found statistically significant differences between age, gender, and reported technology use. It is suggested faculty development programs should consider faculty members’ educational beliefs and personal preferences when supporting faculty with their uses of technologies. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc799481/
First Movement of the Beethoven Third Piano Concerto: An Argument for the Alkan Cadenza
The goal of this dissertation is not only to introduce the unique cadenza by Alkan but also to offer an argument from the performer’s point of view, for why Alkan’s cadenza should be considered when there exists a cadenza by Beethoven himself, not to mention those by a number of other composers, both contemporaries of Beethoven and later. Information in reference to the brief history of the cadenza and the pianoforte in the time of Mozart and Beethoven is presented in Chapter 2. A brief bibliography about Alkan is presented in Chapter 3. Chapter 4 describes not only the cadenza in the era of Alkan, but also a comparison which is presented between Beethoven and Alkan's cadenzas. Examples of the keyboard range, dynamic contrast, use of pedal and alternating notes or octaves, and creative quote are presented in Chapter 4. In conclusion, the revival of Alkan's cadenza is mentioned, and the author's hope to promote the Alkan's cadenza is presented in Chapter 5. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc799505/
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