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The Transition Experience of Second Career Respiratory Faculty: a Phenomenological Study
This phenomenological study investigated the transition experiences of clinical respiratory therapists who pursued second careers as respiratory faculty. Situated Learning Theory and Workplace Learning Theory were the frameworks for interviews with 11 second career respiratory faculty who had taught fewer than five years in baccalaureate degree programs. The goal of this study was to identify the major themes of their experiences. Thematic analysis revealed five common experiences: under-preparation, challenges, overwhelmed feelings, personal responsibilities, and rewards. The common theoretical framework for all participants was the critical need to understand their communities of practice within their organizations. From this study, respiratory department chairs and administrators may better understand the challenges and needs of clinical therapists as they transition into faculty positions. Positive experiences such as improved orientations and continued effective faculty support may promote a more rewarding and long-term practice. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500217/
Comparison of Learning Performance Between Students Who Do and Students Who Do Not Use Mobile Technology-based Activities
This study examined if using mobile technology-based activities would increase student performance in biological science courses. The study compared two groups of students in lectures and labs. Each group had about 20 students. The mobile group had mobile technology-based activities and the non-mobile group received conventional instruction. The mobile group used links to the website, or a QR Code to access the activities. The non-mobile group had handouts and worksheets over the same content. The research methodology for this study was mixed method. The study was a quasi-experimental design that used instruction method as the independent variable between two groups. The study used formative and summative assessment to compare the performance of the mobile group and non-mobile group in lecture and lab. The student in the mobile group had statistically significantly higher lab exam scores than students in the non-mobile group. Additionally, Students were surveyed about their performance expectancy and effort expectancy using mobile technology for learning, and they were asked about their self-management of learning. Analysis indicated that both groups had similar performance and effort expectancy using mobile technology for learning, but the two groups differed on self-management of learning responses to the survey. Focus groups from the mobile group and the non-mobile group were interviewed about issues related to benefits and challenges encountered learning with mobile technology-based activities. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500130/
Using Baroque Vocal Music to Introduce Horn Students to the Musical Concepts of Expression, Articulation, Phrasing, and Tempo
Baroque music is an area largely neglected in the music education of young horn students and wind players in general. Baroque horn repertoire is very demanding primarily due to the range. Baroque composers wrote for horn using the uppermost register of the instrument. In this range the partials are closer together, allowing for more melodic writing. This music requires an advanced level of technique, endurance, and ability. Often this repertoire is not suitable for students until they are well into their collegiate years of study. Frequently this music is performed on descant horns. Since only a small number of middle school and high school horn students continue to play after they leave their school band programs, they many never get first hand experience performing Baroque music. Vocal students are often introduced to Baroque arias early in their training. Purcell’s songs and arias are an excellent example of the literature that young voice students use. These arias and songs can be the perfect portal to Baroque music for horn students as well. Here I have created an edition of Henry Purcell’s songs and arias for young horn students. Each aria used the text as a guide for the “affect” and its impact on tone, articulation, and phrasing. The bass line is also used as a guide for determining tempo and style. Each piece is transcribed as a solo with piano accompaniment and as a duet. The goal of this edition is to use Baroque vocal music to introduce horn students to the musical concepts of expression, articulation, phrasing, and tempo. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500178/
Technology-enhanced Classroom Environments and English Language Acquisition Among Native Spanish-speaking, English Language Learners in the Preschool and Elementary Classroom
This qualitative study addressed the question: What are the perceptions of preschool and elementary bilingual and ESL teachers on how technology-enhanced classroom environments support native Spanish-speaking English language learners in the acquisition of English as a second language? With the support of six school districts representing three different regions and 15 schools in Texas, this research investigated technology-enhanced learning environments and the influence of emerging technologies on language acquisition by focusing on classroom interactions and learner engagement in preschool and elementary settings. Forty-six teachers completed the self-identified online questionnaire and from that initial group of participants, 10 were chosen for the face-to-face semi-structured interviews. A two-cycle progressive refinement coding technique was used for the analysis of the teacher interviews. In Vivo coding was selected for the first-cycle coding methodology to study teacher perspectives using their direct language. For the second-cycle methodology, focus coding was chosen as a continuation of the analytical process examining the developing patterns resulting in the initial codes being grouped to form salient categories. This process of reanalyzing and reorganizing coded data led to the creation of four emergent themes and in the views of the teachers interviewed describes how emerging technologies influences English language acquisition. The four emergent themes identified were “engaging students for learning,” collaborating with others,” “developing and clarifying concepts,” and “creating authentic work.” digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500193/
User Acceptance of Technology: an Empirical Examination of Factors Leading to Adoption of Decision Support Technologies for Emergency Management
This study examines factors that influence the intent to use and actual use of decision support software (DSS) technology by emergency management officials to facilitate disaster response management. The unified theory of acceptance and use of technology popularized by scholars from the field of information sciences (IS) for the private sector is adapted and extended to examine technology use in the public sector, specifically by emergency managers. An e-survey was sent to 1, 452 city and county emergency management officials from FEMA region VI and complete responses obtained from 194 were analyzed. Findings suggest that social influence is the strongest predictor of intent to use DSS technology by emergency managers, unlike private sector studies where performance expectancy was the strongest predictor. Additionally, effort expectancy, collaboration, social vulnerability, professionalism, performance expectancy, and gender explained 40 percent of their intent to use DSS technology. Factors explaining actual use of technology were intent to use technology, having an in house GIS specialist, and age of the emergency manager. This research successfully closes the gap in IS and disaster literature by being the first to focus on factors influencing technology use by emergency managers for decision making in disaster response. It underscores the importance of collaboration not only for post-disaster activities but also as a precursor to better disaster preparedness planning that calls for information sharing and technology acceptance and adoption across partnering jurisdictions. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500162/
Measuring the Effect of Alternating In-class with Online Lecture on Student Learning in College Classrooms
Personalized instruction has long been a goal of behavior analysis in the education of typically developing populations, one important element of which is the delivery of lectures in new formats. This study tested feasibility of online lecture delivery by comparing online and in-class delivery of lectures using an adapted alternating treatments design. Each week, the lecture component of a unit of an introductory behavior analysis course was presented either online or in-class, alternating week to week. The alternation was counterbalanced between two sections, where one section saw the lecture for a given unit -online while the other did it in-class, allowing for comparison between lectures of a given unit as well as across units within a section. First attempt quiz scores were measured. No significant difference in the trend of quiz scores between conditions was detected, averaging 73.1% (range, 50.4% to 83.4%) for online and 72.8% (range, 54.8 to 84%) for in-class conditions. This suggests that online lectures are a feasible alternative lecture delivery in this introductory behavior analysis course. This experimental methodology may also be used to test other instructional techniques as well. The ability to place lectures online, opens the door to further, more refined, experimentation with modern instructional methods such as the “flipped classroom.” digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500139/
Thematic and Formal Narrative in Respighi’s Sinfonia Drammatica
Respighi’s scarcely-known orchestral work Sinfonia Drammatica lives up to its title by evoking a narrative throughout the course of its three movements. In this dissertation, I argue how the work’s surface, subsurface, and formal elements suggest this narrative which emerges as a cycle of rising and falling dramatic tension. I explain how Respighi constructs the work’s narrative in the musical surface through a diverse body of themes that employ three motives of contour. The disposition and manipulation of these motives within the themes suggest frequent fluctuations of the level of conflict throughout the symphony as a whole. To show the involvement of musical forms in the work’s narrative, I employ an approach which integrates harmony and thematic behavior. I utilize analytical methods from the current Formenlehre, including terms from James Hepokoski and Warren Darcy’s sonata deformation theory and William Caplin’s theories of formal functions to elucidate ties between the forms of the Sinfonia Drammatica’s movements and those of conventional sonata forms of the late-eighteenth century. This dissertation also employs Heinrich Schenker’s theories of structures, voice leading, and reduction to illustrate large-scale aspects of the Sinfonia Drammatica’s narrative. The resulting analyses show Respighi’s elaborations of common structural paradigms which serve to heighten the articulation of the narrative. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500165/
The Changing Symbolic Images of the Trumpet: Bologna and Venice in the Seventeenth Century
The trumpet is among the most ancient of all musical instruments, and an examination of its history reveals that it has consistently maintained important and specific symbolic roles in society. Although from its origins this symbolic identity was linked to the instrument’s limited ceremonial and signaling function, the seventeenth century represents a period in which a variety of new roles and identities emerged. Bologna and Venice represent the two most important centers for trumpet writing in Italy during the seventeenth century. Because of the differing ideologies at work in these cities, two distinctive symbolic images of the instrument and two different ways of writing for it emerged. The trumpet’s ecclesiastic role in Bologna and its participation in Venetian opera put the instrument at the service of two societies, one centered around the Church, and another around a more permissive state. Against the backdrop of the social and political structures in Venice and Bologna, and through an examination of its newly-emerging musical roles in each city, the trumpet’s changing identities during a most important point in the history of the instrument will be examined. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500135/
The Issue with Latino Voter Turnout: How Does the Issue of Immigration Affect Latino Voter Turnout?
In this study, I investigate how the issue of immigration affects Latino voter turnout. I hypothesize that U.S. Latino citizens who view immigration as highly important and helpful to the United States will be more likely to turn out to vote in midterm and presidential elections. In addition to a contextual analysis on elections in Arizona and California, I perform a probit regression analysis on survey data from Pew Hispanic's 2004 National Survey of Latinos on Politics and Civic Participation. The results are mixed with respect to the initial expectations. While respondents who view immigration as important and helpful are more likely to turn out than those who view immigration as important and hurtful, the results suggest that respondents who find immigration as unimportant may not be less likely to turn out. Further, there are some differences between Latino subgroups, although these differences are minor. Ultimately, the hypotheses presented in this study find moderate support. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500164/
Laser Surface Treatment of Amorphous Metals
Amorphous materials are used as soft magnetic materials and also as surface coatings to improve the surface properties. Furthermore, the nanocrystalline materials derived from their amorphous precursors show superior soft magnetic properties than amorphous counter parts for transformer core applications. In the present work, laser based processing of amorphous materials will be presented. Conventionally, the nanocrystalline materials are synthesized by furnace heat treatment of amorphous precursors. Fe-based amorphous/nanocrystalline materials due to their low cost and superior magnetic properties are the most widely used soft magnetic materials. However, achieving nanocrystalline microstructure in Fe-Si-B ternary system becomes very difficult owing its rapid growth rate at higher temperatures and sluggish diffusion at low temperature annealing. Hence, nanocrystallization in this system is achieved by using alloying additions (Cu and Nb) in the ternary Fe-Si-B system. Thus, increasing the cost and also resulting in reduction of saturation magnetization. laser processing technique is used to achieve extremely fine nanocrystalline microstructure in Fe-Si-B amorphous precursor. Microstructure-magnetic Property-laser processing co-relationship has been established for Fe-Si-B ternary system using analytical techniques. Laser processing improved the magnetic properties with significant increase in saturation magnetization and near zero coercivity values. Amorphous materials exhibit excellent corrosion resistance by virtue of their atomic structure. Fe-based amorphous materials are economical and due to their ease of processing are of potential interest to synthesize as coatings materials for wear and corrosion resistance applications. Fe-Cr-Mo-Y-C-B amorphous system was used to develop thick coatings on 4130 Steel substrate and the corrosion resistance of the amorphous coatings was improved. It is also shown that the mode of corrosion depends on the laser processing conditions. The microstructure evolution and the corrosion mechanisms operating are evaluated using post processing and post corrosion analysis. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500194/
Conjugal Rights in Flux in Medieval Poetry
This study explores how four medieval poems—the Junius manuscript’s Genesis B and Christ and Satan and Geoffrey Chaucer’s Troilus and Criseyde and The Parliament of Fowls—engage with medieval conjugal rights through their depictions of agentive female protagonists. Although many laws at this time sought to suppress the rights of women, especially those of wives’, both pre- and post-conquest poets illustrate women who act as subjects, exercising legal rights. Medieval canon and common law supported a certain amount of female agency in marriage but was not consistent in its understanding of what that was. By considering the shifts in law from Anglo-Saxon and fourteenth century England in relation to wives’ rights and female consent, my project asserts that the authors of Genesis B and Christ and Satan and the late-medieval poet Chaucer position their heroines to defend legislation that supports female agency in matters of marriage. The Anglo-Saxon authors do so by conceiving of Eve’s role in the Fall and harrowing of hell as similar to the legal role of a forespeca. Through Eve’s mimesis of Satan’s rhetoric, she is able to reveal an alternate way of conceiving of the law as merciful instead of legalistic. Chaucer also engages with a woman’s position in society under the law through his representation of Criseyde’s role in her courtship with Troilus in his epic romance, Troilus and Criseyde. Chaucer disrupts his audiences’ expectations by placing Criseyde as the more agentive party in her courtship with Troilus and shows that women might hope to the most authority in marriage by withholding their consent. In his last dream vision, The Parliament of Fowls, Chaucer engages again with the importance of female consent in marriage but takes his interrogation of conjugal rights a step further by imagining an alternate legal system through Nature, a female authority who gives equal consideration to all classes and genders. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500176/
A Study of Novice Special Education Teachers’ Preparation to Teach Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders
The purpose of this study is to identify novice teachers’ perception of their preparedness to teach a class designed for students with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) after graduation from a traditional university-based special education program or from a special education alternative certification program. Teacher preparedness and the need for highly qualified teachers of students with ASD are relevant topics, as the prevalence rate of ASD continues to increase. This phenomenological qualitative study explores novice teachers’ perceptions of preparedness to teach students with ASD and their knowledge about teaching students with ASD. Semi-structured, in-depth interviews were conducted with six novice special education teachers of students with ASD. Results indicated that novice teachers of students with ASD have knowledge of autism and evidence-based practices (EBP), which they ascertained primarily through experiences such as; working directly with students with ASD, however, preservice education programs provided the participants with cursory information related to knowledge of ASD and EBP. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500121/
Real-time Rendering of Burning Objects in Video Games
In recent years there has been growing interest in limitless realism in computer graphics applications. Among those, my foremost concentration falls into the complex physical simulations and modeling with diverse applications for the gaming industry. Different simulations have been virtually successful by replicating the details of physical process. As a result, some were strong enough to lure the user into believable virtual worlds that could destroy any sense of attendance. In this research, I focus on fire simulations and its deformation process towards various virtual objects. In most game engines model loading takes place at the beginning of the game or when the game is transitioning between levels. Game models are stored in large data structures. Since changing or adjusting a large data structure while the game is proceeding may adversely affect the performance of the game. Therefore, developers may choose to avoid procedural simulations to save resources and avoid interruptions on performance. I introduce a process to implement a real-time model deformation while maintaining performance. It is a challenging task to achieve high quality simulation while utilizing minimum resources to represent multiple events in timely manner. Especially in video games, this overwhelming criterion would be robust enough to sustain the engaging player's willing suspension of disbelief. I have implemented and tested my method on a relatively modest GPU using CUDA. My experiments conclude this method gives a believable visual effect while using small fraction of CPU and GPU resources. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500131/
Perceptions of Family Vacation and Family Cohesion and the Moderating Effects of Parenting Style
Family cohesion, or emotional bonding, is important to family functioning. Shared activities such as family vacations offer opportunities for strengthening the family unit which can improve cohesion. Additionally, parenting style has direct influence on the family unit and family cohesion. This study’s purpose was to assess to what extent the perception of the family vacation experience predicted the perception of family cohesion and whether that relationship was moderated by parenting style. An online survey was conducted, resulting in 97 adult participants responding to items regarding their last family vacation, family cohesion, and parenting style. Using hierarchical multiple regression, a medium effect size was found for the predictive ability of a participant’s perception of their last family vacation on family cohesion. Findings also indicated a negative correlation between an authoritarian parenting style and perception of family cohesion, but a positive relationship between the interaction of family vacation experience and authoritarian parenting to family cohesion. Stronger predictive abilities were found for those with children in the 3-11 age group. Results may encourage parent and family educators to use family vacation as a tool in assisting families with the processes of building strong and cohesive families. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500132/
The Sonatas of Johann Gottfried Eckard (1735-1809) and the Evolution of Keyboard Instruments Between 1760 and 1785
Johann Gottfried Eckard was a self-trained composer and keyboardist studying with Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach’s Versuch while he lived in Augsburg. Eckard traveled to Paris with the keyboard instrument builder, Johann Andreas Stein, in 1758 and settled in France for the rest of his life. Eckard only composed eight keyboard sonatas and a set of variations on the Menuet d’Exaudet. He published his works during the transitional period from harpsichord to fortepiano. The eight keyboard sonatas incorporated variations of musical styles which included Italian sonata, galant, and empfindsamer stil. His keyboard sonatas influenced his contemporaries including Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Johann Schobert. Eckard was one of the early fortepiano composers in France and tried to promote the new instrument, but wrote in the Foreword of six sonatas (op.1), that they were suitable for the harpsichord, the clavichord, and the fortepiano. The six sonatas of op.1 were published in 1763, two years after fortepiano was advertised for sale in the local newspaper. In 1768, the fortepiano was used in a public concert for the first time in Paris. In the aspect of performance practice, both harpsichord and fortepiano used juxtapose during the transitional period, even though the music would sound better on the fortepiano especially the slow movements in Eckard’s sonatas. The early stage of French fortepiano building was influenced by German keyboard instrument builders. In addition to building harpsichords, French builders, Taskin and Goermann, also started building fortepianos. Eckard was highly respected as both a composer and a performer from music critics in his time. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500148/
Motivating Pre-service Teachers to Incorporate Technology Into the Classroom
Technology integration into the classroom is a multi-faceted and complex topic. One factor that can have an effect on a teacher's incorporation of technology into their classroom is pre-service teacher technology training. In this research study the ARCS instructional design model was applied to a pre-service teacher technology course in the hopes of motivating course attendees to both learn about technology incorporation and to incorporate technology into their future classrooms. The ARCS instructional design model that relies on the motivational sub-components of attention, relevance, confidences, and satisfaction to develop instruction that motivates to students to learn course content and goals. This study analyzed a group of pre-service teachers enrolled in a university technology training course to determine if the redesign resulted in the desired outcomes. Pre-test and post-test data was collected using both quantitative and qualitative instruments to analyze the potential effect of the redesigned course. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500101/
Lester Walton’s Champion: Black America’s Uneasy Relationship with Jack Johnson
In 1908 Jack Johnson became the first black heavyweight boxing champion of the world. His reign would be rife with controversy, leading to widespread racial violence and draconian government intervention. Lester Walton, theater critic for the New York Age, became obsessed with Johnson; his extensive writing on the boxer powerfully reveals not just Walton’s own struggle with issues of race in America, but sheds light on the difficulties the black community at large faced in trying to make sense of a figure who simultaneously represented hope for the positive change Reconstruction failed to produce and, ironically, also threatened to intensify the hardships of Jim Crow era oppression. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500142/
A Similar Approach with Different Results: the Use of Baroque Elements in Stravinsky’s Suite Italienne (1933), Shostakovich’s Violin Sonata in G Major, Op 134 (1968) and Schnittke’s Suite in the Old Style (1972)
Igor Stravinsky (1882-1971), Dmitri Shostakovich (1906-1975) and Alfred Schnittke (1934-1998) were three of the most important avant-garde Russian composers of the twentieth century. Even though their music shares a number of important traits, their work also reflects very individualized and distinct compositional styles. This study illustrates the similarities in their approach and the contrasting elements present in three selected pieces: Stravinsky´s Suite Italienne for Violin and Piano (1933), Shostakovich’s Violin Sonata in G Major, Op. 134 (1968), and Schnittke’s Suite in the Old Style for Violin and Piano (Harpsichord) (1972). The study disseminates Stravinsky, Shostakovich, and Schnittke’s musical influences in these works, focusing particularly in the use of baroque elements by tracing a number of important aspects from their backgrounds. In addition, a chronological outline of compositions containing baroque elements is provided. Finally, this research examines stylistic traits of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries in the three selected compositions: Suite Italienne, Violin Sonata, Op. 134, and Suite in the Old Style. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500108/
Inside the Third Sector: a Gongo Level Analysis of Chinese Civil Society
This thesis investigates a new variant of the relationship between society and the states: Government-Owned (or Organized) Non-Governmental Organizations (GONGOs). Past research has typically understood civil society as a means to explain the orientation of groups of citizens towards collective outcomes. For decades, NGOs have been a key component of this relationship between political actors but the systematic study of GONGOs has been widely neglected by research. I used an original dataset collected from an NGO directory developed by the China Development Brief (CDB) that provides information on the functional areas of NGOs, their sources of funding and various organizational facts. These data were used to code a series of concepts that will serve as the basis for an initial systematic study into GONGOs and their relationship with the Chinese government. My theoretical expectations are that the primary predictors of an NGO’s autonomy relate to their functional areas of operation, their age and other geographical factors. I find preliminary support for the effect of an NGO’s age on its autonomy from the state, as well as initial support for the dynamic nature of the relationship between NGOs and the state. I close with a discussion of these findings as well as their implications for future research. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500183/
The Effects of Training History on Retention and Reacquisition of Stimulus Control
The purpose of this experiment was to study the effects of training history on retention and re-acquisition of stimulus control of previously learned behaviors. In Phase I, two pairs of behaviors were alternately trained. Circle and touch behaviors were trained concurrently until two consecutive errorless sessions were run. Spin and down behaviors were trained together in the same manner. Probe sessions, in which all four cues were presented, were conducted each time a pair of behaviors reached this criterion. Training of one pair did not occur until the other pair had reached criterion and probe sessions were run. Despite achieving the designated criterion during training, stimulus control changed during probes. During probe sessions, errors increased under the cues that were not currently being trained. In most cases, the type of errors emitted for each cue was the same as the behavior that was trained concurrently. The number of training sessions required to reach criterion accuracy was high during the first set of sessions and decreased over the course of the experiment. In Phase II, spin and circle behaviors were trained concurrently. The number of sessions required to reach stimulus control criteria remained low, and the number of errors emitted under the spin and circle cues during probe sessions decreased. However, the number of errors increased under the touch cue. In Phase III, a reinforce-all procedure was used instead of extinction to test stimulus control. The highest frequency of errors occurred under the touch cue, but the down error was almost exclusively emitted under every cue during the last several sessions. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc499982/
Investigating the Relationship Between Internet Attitudes of College Students and Their Stem (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) Career Perceptions
Are our students just consumers of technology or do their interests in technology translate into positive perceptions about STEM majors and careers? This research aimed to describe the role of the Internet in undergraduate students’ academic and career perceptions in STEM areas. The purpose of the research was addressed in three parts. First, the attitudes of undergraduate students towards five functions of the Internet namely tool, toy, treasure, telephone and territory were described. Second, students’ STEM career-related perceptions were described in terms of their science and mathematics self-efficacy, outcome expectations, and attitudes towards a STEM career. Third, the relationship between the five Internet functions and the three STEM career-related perceptions was examined. The participants for this study were 566 undergraduate students from a large Southern university. The research design followed a mixed methods approach using multivariate analyses and content analyses. The findings of the research indicated that there was a small but meaningful relationship between undergraduate students’ Internet and STEM perceptions. In their daily lives, the students perceived the Internet more as a toy and a tool. For general career related purposes, they perceived the Internet more as a treasure and a tool. For STEM areas in particular, they perceived the treasure and toy dimensions of the Internet more relevant. Findings on the differences in students’ Internet and STEM career-related perceptions based on gender, major and enrollment in an Honors program are also discussed. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500153/
Wanted: an Exploration of Journalism Skills Acquired Through Student Media Experiences
Collegiate newsrooms serve two functions: to provide news and information to their campuses and to provide hands-on career preparation for student journalists. Student media professionals face having to do the latter in a way that keeps up with changing demands on entry-level employees, influenced by evolving technology and role consolidation within professional media. This study provides perspective from recent graduates with student media experience on the skills they felt most confident in upon graduating, where they gained those skills, and how they feel their student media experiences prepared them for the workplace. Using Everett Rogers’ theory of innovation diffusion to frame the issue, results show that student media professionals must recognize their roles as the change agent in shaping and pushing the opportunities to develop digital skills expected of entry-level journalists. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500179/
Monitoring Dengue Outbreaks Using Online Data
Internet technology has affected humans' lives in many disciplines. The search engine is one of the most important Internet tools in that it allows people to search for what they want. Search queries entered in a web search engine can be used to predict dengue incidence. This vector borne disease causes severe illness and kills a large number of people every year. This dissertation utilizes the capabilities of search queries related to dengue and climate to forecast the number of dengue cases. Several machine learning techniques are applied for data analysis, including Multiple Linear Regression, Artificial Neural Networks, and the Seasonal Autoregressive Integrated Moving Average. Predictive models produced from these machine learning methods are measured for their performance to find which technique generates the best model for dengue prediction. The results of experiments presented in this dissertation indicate that search query data related to dengue and climate can be used to forecast the number of dengue cases. The performance measurement of predictive models shows that Artificial Neural Networks outperform the others. These results will help public health officials in planning to deal with the outbreaks. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500167/
Female Adolescents and Death: a Qualitative Analysis
The purpose of this research design is to explore the meaning of death for the female adolescent. A qualitative design was used as the method of research. Twelve participants were selected from a snowball sample ten females and two males. Four participants reported witnessing the death of an individual, five reported a moderated death experience in which they were not present but were told after the fact and three reported no significant experience with death. The study indicated relationships and cause of death as among the pre-conditions towards meaning development for the adolescent female. The two main themes derived from the pre-conditions are an understanding of the inevitability of death for themselves and the experience of death as qualia. Consequences to the experience of death include increased emotional tolerance under stress and a perceived increased maturity suggesting resilience in the adolescent female following a loss. Future areas of research are also addressed. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500180/
The Effects of Glyphosate Based Herbicides on Chick Embryo Development
Glyphosate based herbicides are among the most widely used herbicides in the world. The purpose of this study was to determine developmental toxicity of glyphosate, the active ingredient in the common herbicide Roundup, on developing chicken embryos. Few studies have examined toxic effects of glyphosate alone versus the full compound formulations of Roundup, which include adjuvants and surfactants. Adjutants and surfactants are added to aid in solubility and absorption of glyphosate. In this study chicken embryos were exposed at the air cell on embryonic day 6 to 19.8 or 9.9 mg / Kg egg mass of glyphosate in Roundup or glyphosate only. Chickens treated with 19.8 and 9.9 mg / Kg glyphosate in Roundup showed significant reduction in survivability compared to glyphosate alone treatments and controls. On embryonic day 18, embryos were sacrificed for evaluation of developmental toxicity using wet embryo mass, dry embryo mass, and yolk mass as indicators. Morphology measurements were taken on liver mass, heart mass, tibiotarsus length and beak length. Embryos treated with 19.8 mg / Kg glyphosate and 9.9 mg / Kg glyphosate in Roundup showed significant reductions in wet and dry embryo mass and yolk mass. Tibiotarsus length in 9.9 mg / Kg glyphosate in Roundup treatments were significantly reduced compared to 9.9 mg / Kg glyphosate treatments. Beak length was significantly reduced in 9.9 mg /Kg glyphosate in Roundup treatments compared to all other groups. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500146/
Yoichi Hiraoka: His Artistic Life and His Influence on the Art of Xylophone Performance
Yoichi Hiraoka was an amazing Japanese xylophone player who had significant influence on the development of the xylophone as a solo instrument. The purpose of this dissertation is to collect and record evidence of Mr. Hiraoka, to examine his distinguished efforts to promote the xylophone, to investigate his influences on keyboard percussion literature, and to contribute to the development of the art of keyboard percussion performance as a whole. This dissertation addresses Yoichi Hiraoka’s artistic life, his commissioned pieces, and his influence on the art of xylophone performance. Analyses of two of his most influential commissioned works, Alan Hovhaness’ Fantasy on Japanese Wood Prints and Toshiro Mayuzumi’s Concertino for Xylophone Solo and Orchestra, are also included to illustrate the art of the xylophone, and to explain why Hiraoka did not play all of his commissioned works. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500161/
El Arquetipo Del Narco Mexicano En La Novela, El Cine, Y La Música
Various groups of Mexican culture have assigned to el narco archetypical characteristics of a heroic figure in the literary, visual, and auditory arts. As a result, today’s narcocultura has expanded its tentacles to a vast array of prominent industries, such as publishing companies, the silver screen, and recording studios. El narco is no longer seen by some sectors as the outlaw that stalks our society but, instead, as a hero who fights against a hegemonic faction to reclaim his sovereignty. This thesis unites interdisciplinary observations of the narco phenomena that Mexican culture has assigned to the iconic figure of el narco. The purpose of this work is to recreate the evolutionary development through a theoretical-literary analysis of this prototype in order to better understand Mexican society’s stance on this phenomenon. Octavio Paz’s theory of the Mexican psyche, Joseph Campbell’s theory of the hero’s journey, and an interdisciplinary focus will be employed to analyze this iconic figure. In this thesis, my aim is to investigate how an ultra-conservative Mexican society evolved into a consortium that upholds the narco’s indistinct behaviors and actions. What roles do first world governments and the Mexican state play to fortify, eradicate, or control the narco phenomenon? Finally, which is the most prudent strategy to coexist in a world alongside the narco? digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500175/
Exploring General Education Pre-service Teachers’ Levels of Concern Regarding the Implementation of Response to Intervention
Schools are increasingly challenged to respond to educational initiatives, implement accountability measures, and incorporate standards-driven curriculum changes introduced by laws such as the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEIA) of 2004. IDEIA signified a shift in the field of education and intensified practitioners’ concerns about the identification and instruction of students with learning disabilities (LD). The revisions to IDEIA proposed alternative models for the evaluation and identification of students with LD, such as response to intervention (RTI). RTI is an educational framework that supports students at-risk for academic failure by focusing on preventative measures. As teachers’ roles evolve in response to innovations such as RTI, teacher preparation programs must adjust their focus and curriculum accordingly. A parallel mixed-methods design was used to explore 100 general education pre-service teachers’ levels of concern regarding the implementation of RTI based on the concerns based adoption model. The sample for the study integrated general education pre-service teachers enrolled in professional development schools (PDS) at two levels of candidacy, PDS1 and PDS2. Data collected was analyzed utilizing canonical correlation analysis (CCA), multivariate analysis of variance (MANOVA), descriptive statistics, and thematic analysis. Results explain general education pre-service teachers’ levels of knowledge had a negative relationship with the levels of concern, as these appeared to be higher due to teacher candidates’ lack of knowledge. Qualitative findings supported this statement. Contributions to the literature are presented and may guide teacher preparation programs as they assess the readiness of their pre-service teachers to effectively implement RTI. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500138/
Effects of Natural/anthropogenic Stressors and a Chemical Contaminant on Pre and Post Mycorrhizal Colonization in Wetland Plants
Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi, colonizing over 80% of all plants, were long thought absent in wetlands; however, recent studies have shown many wetland plants harbor arbuscular mycorrhizae (AM) and dark septate endophytes (DSE). Wetland services such as biodiversity, shoreline stabilization, water purification, flood control, etc. have been estimated to have a global value of $14.9 trillion. Recognition of these vital services is accompanied by growing concern for their vulnerability and continued loss, which has resulted in an increased need to understand wetland plant communities and mycorrhizal symbiosis. Factors regulating AM and DSE colonization need to be better understood to predict plant community response and ultimately wetland functioning when confronting natural and human induced stressors. This study focused on the effects of water quality, hydrology, sedimentation, and hurricanes on AM and DSE colonization in three wetland species (Taxodium distichum, Panicum hemitomon, and Typhal domingensis) and plant communities of coastal wetlands in Southeast Louisiana and effects of an antimicrobial biocide, triclosan (TCS), on AM (Glomus intraradices) spore germination, hyphal growth, hyphal branching, and colonization in fresh water wetland plants (Eclipta prostrata, Hibiscus laevis, and Sesbania herbacea) from bottom land hardwood forest in north central Texas. The former, mesocosm studies simulating coastal marsh vegetation ran for five years. In the latter studies, AM spores and wetland plants were exposed to 0 g/L, 0.4 g/L, and 4.0 g/L TCS concentrations in static renewal and flow through exposures for 21 and 30 days, respectively. AM and DSE colonization was significantly affected by individual and interactions of four independent variables in mesocosm experiments. Similarly, spore germination, hyphal growth, hyphal branching, and AM colonization in selected wetland plants were significantly lowered by exposure to the TCS at environmentally relevant concentrations. However, levels of effects were plant species and fungal propagules specific. My results showed that natural and human induced alterations in environmental factors and chemical contaminants can significantly impact levels of mycorrhizal spore germination, colonization, and spore density in coastal and freshwater wetland plants. The resulting impacts on plant community structure and ecosystem function require further study. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500137/
Revisioning a Masterpiece: Jon Magnussen’s “Psalm”
In 2001, composer Jon Magnussen met the unusual challenge of unifying his new score for Psalm, an already-existing dance work from 1967, with the original artistic conceit of the choreographer, José Limón, who died in 1972. Limón was inspired directly by his reading of André Schwartz-Bart’s Holocaust novel, The Last of the Just, and had initially desired to use Stravinsky’s Symphony of Psalms as the score for the dance. Faced with cost-preclusive licensing fees for the Stravinksy, Limón engaged Eugene Lester to compose a score for Psalm. The Lester score, now lost, served the work for only a brief time, when the piece fell out of the repertory. When approached to create a new score for the extant dance work, Magnussen chose to draw his own influence from three works: the dance itself, Schwartz-Bart’s novel, and Stravinsky’s Symphony of Psalms. In addition, Limón Company Artistic Director Carla Maxwell served as Magnussen’s collaborator in reworking Psalm to resemble the work she believed Limón had desired all along. Magnussen’s influence from Stravinsky and Schwartz-Bart are revealed in the choices of text, the scored forces, and melodic ideas generated by the composer by mapping the names of significant Holocaust sites onto scalar patterns. Limón’s memoir, personal articles, and sketches of artistic ideas along with personal interviews with Magnussen and Maxwell will inform my research. These sources easily establish Magnussen as a significant composer, and Psalm as a significant work of art; its value is reflected in the careful confluence of the artistic contributions of three significant artists, Limón, Schwartz-Bart, and Magnussen. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500109/
The Impact of Standards-based Report Cards on Reading Development of Primary Grade Students
The purpose of this mixed-method study was to explore the instructional changes in first grade classrooms and reading progress of first grade students in relation to implementation of standards-based report cards (SBRC). The goal of this study, conducted in a suburban Texas school district, was to determine whether there was a statistically significant difference in reading progress between students enrolled in first grade classrooms in which traditional report cards were used in comparison to comparable classrooms in which SBRCs were used. Additionally, the instructional practices of teachers were examined to determine the types of changes that took place as the district moved from traditional report cards to SBRCs. A total of 709 students and 15 teachers were involved in the study. The study revealed that there was no statistically significant difference between the reading growth of students assessed in SBRC classrooms and those assessed with traditional report cards. There were, however, significant differences in instructional practices employed by teachers in SBRC classrooms. These changes in practice included instructing with a greater degree of focus on specific objectives to be taught, more closely following the district’s scope and sequence, greater communication regarding the grading criteria and methods used for reporting progress, use of the most recent achievement data when determining grades (in comparison to averaging of grades during a reporting period), and a greater awareness of students’ specific abilities. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500184/
Performance Engineering of Software Web Services and Distributed Software Systems
The promise of service oriented computing, and the availability of Web services promote the delivery and creation of new services based on existing services, in order to meet new demands and new markets. As Web and internet based services move into Clouds, inter-dependency of services and their complexity will increase substantially. There are standards and frameworks for specifying and composing Web Services based on functional properties. However, mechanisms to individually address non-functional properties of services and their compositions have not been well established. Furthermore, the Cloud ontology depicts service layers from a high-level, such as Application and Software, to a low-level, such as Infrastructure and Platform. Each component that resides in one layer can be useful to another layer as a service. It hints at the amount of complexity resulting from not only horizontal but also vertical integrations in building and deploying a composite service. To meet the requirements and facilitate using Web services, we first propose a WSDL extension to permit specification of non-functional or Quality of Service (QoS) properties. On top of the foundation, the QoS-aware framework is established to adapt publicly available tools for Web services, augmented by ontology management tools, along with tools for performance modeling to exemplify how the non-functional properties such as response time, throughput, or utilization of services can be addressed in the service acquisition and composition process. To facilitate Web service composition standards, in this work we extended the framework with additional qualitative information to the service descriptions using Business Process Execution Language (BPEL). Engineers can use BPEL to explore design options, and have the QoS properties analyzed for the composite service. The main issue in our research is performance evaluation in software system and engineering. We researched the Web service computation as the first half of this dissertation, and performance antipattern detection and elimination in the second part. Performance analysis of software system is complex due to large number of components and the interactions among them. Without the knowledge of experienced experts, it is difficult to diagnose performance anomalies and attempt to pinpoint the root causes of the problems. Software performance antipatterns are similar to design patterns in that they provide what to avoid and how to fix performance problems when they appear. Although the idea of applying antipatterns is promising, there are gaps in matching the symptoms and generating feedback solution for redesign. In this work, we analyze performance antipatterns to extract detectable features, influential factors, and resource involvements so that we can lay the foundation to detect their presence. We propose system abstract layering model and suggestive profiling methods for performance antipattern detection and elimination. Solutions proposed can be used during the refactoring phase, and can be included in the software development life cycle. Proposed tools and utilities are implemented and their use is demonstrated with RUBiS benchmark. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500103/
Thermally Stimulated Depolarization Current Evaluation of Molding Compounds
TSDC (thermally stimulated depolarization current) is one of the most important and popular technique for investigating electret materials. TSDC technique can indicate the magnitude of polarization and depolarization, relaxation time, charge-storage, glass transition, and activation energy. To fully investigate polarization and relaxation for pure epoxy and filled epoxy materials, a TSDC system was built and verified by the research. The article describes the building processes and verification of the TSDC system. TSDC, TSPC, and TWC tests data for epoxy and filled epoxy samples are presented in the article. To compare TSDC technique with other related techniques, DEA (dielectric analysis), DMA (dynamic mechanical analysis), and DSC (differential scanning calorimetry) tests are introduced. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500107/
Culture Interrupted: Assessing the Effects of the Shining Path Internal Armed Conflict in the Peruvian Highlands
This study was a qualitative examination of social, economic, political, and cultural dilemmas that face Peruvian survivors of the Communist Shining Path Revolution, an internal armed conflict that cut a swath of terror and destruction during the years 1980-2000, with a reported loss of 69,000 residents either killed or considered “disappeared.” The conflict affected primarily poor, uneducated Andean campesinos and townspeople in the highland areas of the Ayacucho District. In this study, I looked closely at the responsibilities of both government and NGOs in the facilitation of readjustment during and after times of instability. In addition, specific challenges the elderly, women and campesinos face in a post-conflict world are analyzed and possible social policies are discerned that might be developed to better implement the transition to a new form of community. Ideas that emerged from this research may assist policy shapers in other less developed countries involved in similar conflicts by examining how Peru dealt with its own issues. Methodology included participant observation and interviews with long-term Ayacuchan residents who stayed-in-place during war time, along with migrants who went to live in shantytowns in more urban areas. The government-mandated Truth and Reconciliation Commission report serves as a framework as it outlined those ultimately deemed responsible and detailed what those affected may expect in the way of appropriate reparations and compensation in the future. Much emphasis is given to the emerging role of women and how ensuing shifts of gender specific cultural roles may affect familial and communal bonds in small-scale societies. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500169/
Design and Application of a New Planar Balun
The baluns are the key components in balanced circuits such balanced mixers, frequency multipliers, push–pull amplifiers, and antennas. Most of these applications have become more integrated which demands the baluns to be in compact size and low cost. In this thesis, a new approach about the design of planar balun is presented where the 4-port symmetrical network with one port terminated by open circuit is first analyzed by using even- and odd-mode excitations. With full design equations, the proposed balun presents perfect balanced output and good input matching and the measurement results make a good agreement with the simulations. Second, Yagi-Uda antenna is also introduced as an entry to fully understand the quasi-Yagi antenna. Both of the antennas have the same design requirements and present the radiation properties. The arrangement of the antenna’s elements and the end-fire radiation property of the antenna have been presented. Finally, the quasi-Yagi antenna is used as an application of the balun where the proposed balun is employed to feed a quasi-Yagi antenna. The antenna is working in the S-band radio frequency and achieves a measured 36% fractional bandwidth for return loss less than -10 dB. The antenna demonstrates a good agreement between its measurement and simulation results. The impact of the parasitic director on the antenna’s performance is also investigated. The gain and the frequency range of the antenna have been reduced due to the absence of this element. This reduction presents in simulation and measurement results with very close agreement. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500144/
Dual-band Microwave Device Design
This thesis presents a brief introduction to microwave components and technology. It also presents two novel dual-band designs, their analysis, topology, simulation and fabrication. In chapter 2, a novel dual-band bandpass filter using asymmetric stub-loaded stepped-impedance resonators (SLSIRs) operating at 1 and 2.6 GHz is shown. This type of design applies suitable arrangements to improve the filter’s performance. Then, in chapter 3, a novel dual-band balun (transforms unbalanced input signals to balanced output signals or vice versa) operating at 1.1 and 2 GHz with flexible frequency ratios is presented, which has more advantages in microwave applications. Then, conclusion and future works are discussed in chapter 4. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500173/
Into the Canyons
Into the Canyons is a documentary short that provides an intimate portrait of two volunteer Wilderness Rangers working and living in Zion National Park in Utah for a summer. Sarah dreams of being a Park Ranger for the National Park Service, but must wait till she earns US citizenship. Working in an office, Allen wants a change in lifestyle. Together they explore the Wilderness and learn what it means to be a Park Ranger. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500188/
An Analysis of the Value-altering Effect of Motivating Operations
Motivating operations (MOs) may affect behavior in two ways; A) an MO momentarily alters the frequency of behavior for which a particular consequence has served as reinforcement (evocative-effect) and B) an MO momentarily alters the behavioral effects of the relevant consequence (value-altering effect). Many studies have empirically demonstrated the evocative function of MOs, however, few if any studies have attempted to systematically manipulate and measure the value-altering effect. The focus of this study was to investigate the value-altering effect by measuring choice and response allocation across two alternative tasks. Participants were two female girls diagnosed with autism. During conditioning sessions, experimenters created a history for the children in which clicking on a moving square on a computer monitor produced a small piece of edible. Prior to some conditions, the participants were allowed 5 min of free-access to the edibles, and in other sessions, access to edibles prior to session was restricted. During these sessions, the square was either red or blue depending on the condition type (pre-access or restricted-access). During probe sessions, both colored squares were concurrently available and participants were allowed to allocate their responding to whichever square they chose. One participant preferred the square associated with restricted-access, which may support the notion of the value-altering effect. Difficulties during conditioning sessions interfered with the ability to run sufficient probes with the other participant to evaluate a value-altering effect. Results suggest that the use of these procedures may be useful to differentiate evocative and function-altering effects of MOs. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500100/
Private Affections: Miscegenation and the Literary Imagination in Israel-palestine
This study politicizes the mixed relationship in Israeli-Palestinian literature. I examine Arab-Jewish and interethnic Jewish intimacy in works by Palestinian national poet Mahmoud Darwish, canonical Israeli novelist A. B. Yehoshua, select anthologized Anglophone and translated Palestinian and Israeli poetry, and Israeli feminist writer Orly Castel-Bloom. I also examine the material cultural discourses issuing from Israel’s textile industry, in which Arabs and Jews interact. Drawing from the methodology of twentieth-century Brazilian miscegenation theorist Gilberto Freyre, I argue that mixed intimacies in the Israeli-Palestinian imaginary represent a desire to restructure a hegemonic public sphere in the same way Freyre’s Brazilian mestizo was meant to rhetorically undermine what he deemed a Western cult of uniformity. This project constitutes a threefold contribution. I offer one of the few postcolonial perspectives on Israeli literature, as it remains underrepresented in the field in comparison to its Palestinian counterparts. I also present the first sustained critique of the hetero relationship and the figure of the hybrid in Israeli-Palestinian literature, especially as I focus on its representation for political options rather than its aesthetic intrigue. Finally, I reexamine and apply Gilberto Freyre in a way that excavates him from critical interment and advocates for his global relevance. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500171/
The Effects of Goal Difficulty and Monitoring Frequency on Effort and Risk Taking Decisions
Management control systems perform a vital role in facilitating the accomplishment of organizational objectives. To effectively align the objectives of employees with those of the organization, firms balance multiple control mechanisms to encourage organizationally desired behaviors and discourage undesired behaviors. The purpose of my dissertation was two-fold. First, I assessed how changes in monitoring frequency influenced employee behaviors and the overall function of the management control system. Second, I investigated the effects of stretch goals on behavior to determine whether stretch goals can lead to harmful behaviors and whether continuous monitoring can mitigate these behaviors. Results suggest that individuals exert more effort when assigned a stretch or difficult goal compared to an easy goal. My study also finds that stretch goals can be harmful because of their effect on risk taking, goal commitment, and job insecurity. Finally, results indicate that accountability mediates the monitoring frequency-risk taking relationship such that continuous monitoring increases accountability and accountability decreases risk taking. However, the ability of monitoring frequency to decrease risk taking may depend on numerous factors. Results from this study allow practitioners to understand the potential benefits and drawbacks of implementing continuous monitoring systems and the combined effects of using these systems in conjunction with compensation systems. Consequently, this study highlights necessary considerations for practitioners during the implementation continuous monitoring systems. The study also informs practitioners of the potentially harmful effects of stretch goals, the conditions under which they occur, and the possible ways to mitigate these effects. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500125/
Paralysis As “Spiritual Liberation” in Joyce’s Dubliners
In James Joyce criticism, and by implication Irish and modernist studies, the word paralysis has a very insular meaning. The word famously appears in the opening page of Dubliners, in “The Sisters,” which predated the collection’s 1914 publication by ten years, and in a letter to his publisher Grant Richards. The commonplace conception of the word is that it is a metaphor that emanates from the literal fact of the Reverend James Flynn’s physical condition the narrator recalls at the beginning of “The Sisters.” As a metaphor, paralysis has signified two immaterial, or spiritual, states: one individual or psychological and the other collective or social. The assumption is that as a collective and individual signifier, paralysis is the thing from which Ireland needs to be freed. Rather than relying on this received tradition of interpretation and assumptions about the term, I consider that paralysis is a two-sided term. I argue that paralysis is a problem and a solution and that sometimes what appears to be an escape from paralysis merely reinforces its negative manifestation. Paralysis cannot be avoided. Rather, it is something that should be engaged and used to redefine individual and social states. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500199/
Exploring the Gender Role Ideology of Black and White Men Between Ages 18 to 30
This research is a qualitative study that explores the gender role ideology of Black and White men between the ages of 18-30. The study found that both groups are moving toward egalitarianism on different pathways. The pathways illustrate the effect of racial identity on gender role ideology. White respondents had a progressive egalitarianism which stemmed from ideas reflected individualism, secularization, and the identification with the grand narrative of the United States. Their respondents also reflected postmodern ideas. Overall their ideas reflect larger White racial identity and shows an overlap between the progressive understanding of modernity and with postmodernist ideas of non-deterministic definitions. Black respondents had a collaborative egalitarianism which stemmed from historical racial and economic deprivation. Subsequently, Blacks gender role ideology illustrates collaboration and communal interdependence between of Black men and women, and the Black church. Blacks tended to view things from a social perspective that was often reactionary. Overall, their ideas reflected the larger Black racial identity which emphasizes collaboration between men and women and a reliance on community based institutions like the Black church. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500185/
The Value of Ties: Impact of Director Interlocks on Acquisition Premium and Post-acquisition Performance
Mergers and acquisitions (M&A) evolved as alternative governance structures for firms seeking to combine resources with other firms, access larger markets, or acquire strategic assets. In spite of managers’ enthusiasm about the practice, studies show mixed results regarding post-acquisition performance of acquiring firms. The impact of acquisitions on the performance of acquiring firms has therefore remained inconclusive. A few reasons for this have been suggested and recent meta-analytic research efforts indicate that studies in M&A may have ignored variables that have significant effects on post-acquisition performance. In a bid to extend the literature on M&A and identify cogent variables that impact on acquisition performance, this dissertation draws on social network theory to advance a proposition for the value-of-ties. This was done by examining the impact of directorate interlocks on acquisitions specifically and organizational strategy in general. A non-experimental cross-sectional study of 98 interlocked directorate companies simultaneously involved in acquisitions was conducted. Several multiple regression analyses were conducted and the results obtained suggest that there is a positive linear relationship between director interlocks and post-acquisition performance and that to some extent this relationship is moderated by acquisition experience. The study also showed that director interlocks have a negative linear relationship with acquisition premium. This study complements the body of knowledge on acquisitions and network theory. It also successfully combined a multi-level approach to research on organizations and strategic management. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500147/
Framework for Evaluating Dynamic Memory Allocators Including a New Equivalence Class Based Cache-conscious Allocator
Software applications’ performance is hindered by a variety of factors, but most notably by the well-known CPU-memory speed gap (often known as the memory wall). This results in the CPU sitting idle waiting for data to be brought from memory to processor caches. The addressing used by caches cause non-uniform accesses to various cache sets. The non-uniformity is due to several reasons, including how different objects are accessed by the code and how the data objects are located in memory. Memory allocators determine where dynamically created objects are placed, thus defining addresses and their mapping to cache locations. It is important to evaluate how different allocators behave with respect to the localities of the created objects. Most allocators use a single attribute, the size, of an object in making allocation decisions. Additional attributes such as the placement with respect to other objects, or specific cache area may lead to better use of cache memories. In this dissertation, we proposed and implemented a framework that allows for the development and evaluation of new memory allocation techniques. At the root of the framework is a memory tracing tool called Gleipnir, which provides very detailed information about every memory access, and relates it back to source level objects. Using the traces from Gleipnir, we extended a commonly used cache simulator for generating detailed cache statistics: per function, per data object, per cache line, and identify specific data objects that are conflicting with each other. The utility of the framework is demonstrated with a new memory allocator known as equivalence class allocator. The new allocator allows users to specify cache sets, in addition to object size, where the objects should be placed. We compare this new allocator with two well-known allocators, viz., Doug Lea and Pool allocators. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500151/
Examination of Contributing Factors for Successful Postsecondary Transitions to Institutions of Higher Education for Youth with High-incidence Disabilities
Transitions are a natural part of life. Youth grow and develop physically, socially, psychologically, and intellectually during primary and secondary school years. The transition from secondary to postsecondary education is an important transition as youth not only move from high school to college, but also from adolescence to young adulthood. It is a time when young adults naturally desire to become more independent in pursuit of their personal dreams and aspirations. The purpose of this study was to examine the impact that academic, psychological, and social factors on youth with high-incidence disabilities as they strive to make successful postsecondary education transitions. Current trends indicate youth with high-incidence disabilities are graduating from high school and are attending vocational schools, colleges, and universities in increasing numbers. Transition barriers still limit many youth who could otherwise attend institutions of higher education regardless of disability type. Findings suggest academic and psychological factors most significantly predict successful postsecondary education transitions. Recommendations for improved transition planning and parental training are suggested. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500112/
Doctoral Level Counseling Students’ Experiences and Perceptions of Learning in a Cohort Environment
Learning community literature supports the use of student cohorts to enhance learning through increased peer interaction and common course work. Researchers employed the qualitative method of phenomenography to identify various ways doctoral counseling students conceptualize and experience learning in a cohort over the course of a single academic year. Participants were all 10 members of a single southwestern U.S. university counseling program doctoral cohort of full-time students between 20 and 59 years of age with 5 members 20-29, 4 members 30-39, 1 member 50-59; 8 female, 2 male; 9 White non-Hispanic, 1 African-American. Data were transcripts from 30 one-hour interviews, three for each participant over the course of their first year of study. The research team that analyzed the data consisted of three advanced counseling program doctoral students, each with research methods coursework. Results revealed nine dynamic structural aspects of learning: dialogue, diversity, knowledge, motivation, support, shared experience, relationship development, interpersonal awareness, and conflict. Findings support the use of learning communities in doctoral level counselor education programs. Cohort members demonstrated increasing awareness of the potential learning benefits of cohort interaction and developed more in depth strategies over time to utilize the cohort to enhance learning. Future counselor educators may now with greater confidence design learning communities and curriculum to facilitate doctoral cohort development for optimal student interaction. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500134/
Opening Doors for Excellent Maternal Health Services: Perceptions Regarding Maternal Health in Rural Tanzania
The worldwide maternal mortality rate is excessive. Developing countries such as Tanzania experience the highest maternal mortality rates. The continued exploration of issues to create ease of access for women to quality maternal health care is a significant concern. A central strategy for reducing maternal mortality is that every birth be attended by a skilled birth attendant, therefore special attention was placed on motivations and factors that might lead to an increased utilization of health facilities. This qualitative study assessed the perceptions of local population concerning maternal health services and their recommendations for improved quality of care. The study was conducted in the Karatu District of Tanzania and gathered data through 66 in-depth interviews with participants from 20 villages. The following components were identified as essential for perceived quality care: medical professionals that demonstrate a caring attitude and share information about procedures; a supportive and nurturing environment during labor and delivery; meaningful and informative maternal health education for the entire community; promotion of men’s involvement as an essential part of the system of maternal health; knowledgeable, skilled medical staff with supplies and equipment needed for a safe delivery. By providing these elements, the community will gain trust in health facilities and staff. The alignment the maternal health services offered to the perceived expectation of quality care will create an environment for increased attendance at health facilities by the local population. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500156/
Ab Initio and Density Functional Investigation of the Conformer Manifold of Melatonin and a Proposal for a Simple Dft-based Diagnostic for Nondynamical Correlation
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In this work we address two problems in computational chemistry relevant to biomolecular modeling. In the first project, we consider the conformer space of melatonin as a a representative example of “real-life” flexible biomolecules. Geometries for all 52 unique conformers are optimized using spin-component scaled MP2, and then relative energies are obtained at the CCSD (T) level near the complete basis set limit. These are then used to validate a variety of DFT methods with and without empirical dispersion corrections, as well as some lower-level ab initio methods. Basis set convergence is found to be relatively slow due to internal C-H…O and C-H…N contacts. Absent dispersion corrections, many DFT functionals will transpose the two lowest conformers. Dispersion corrections resolve the problem for most functionals. Double hybrids yield particularly good performance, as does MP2.5. In the second project, we propose a simple DFT-based diagnostic for nondynamical correlation effects. Aλ= (1-TAE [ΧλC]/TAE[XC])/λ where TAE is the total atomization energy, XC the “pure” DFT exchange-correlation functional, and ΧλC the corresponding hybrid with 100λ% HF-type exchange. The diagnostic is a good predictor for sensitivity of energetics to the level of theory, unlike most of the wavefunction-based diagnostics. For GGA functionals, Aλ values approaching unity indicate severe non-dynamical correlation. The diagnostic is only weakly sensitive to the basis set (beyond polarized double zeta) and can be applied to problems beyond practical reach of wavefunction ab-initio methods required for other diagnostics. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500195/
Surface Modifications to Enhance the Wear Resistance and the Osseo-integration Properties of Biomedical Ti-alloy
The current study focuses on improving the wear resistance of femoral head component and enhancing the osseo-integration properties of femoral stem component of a hip implant made of a new generation low modulus alloy, Ti-35Nb-7Zr-5Ta or TNZT. Different techniques that were adopted to improve the wear resistance of low-modulus TNZT alloy included; (a) fabrication of graded TNZT-xB (x= 0, 1, 2 wt%) samples using LENS, (b) oxidation, and (c) LASER nitriding of TNZT. TNZT-1B and TNZT-O samples have shown improved wear resistance when tested against UHMWPE ball in SBF medium. A new class of bio-ceramic coatings based on calcium phosphate (CaP), was applied on the TNZT sample surface and was further laser processed with the objective of enhancing their osseo-integration properties. With optimized LASER parameters, TNZT-CaP samples have shown improved corrosion resistance, surface wettability and cellular response when compared to the base TNZT sample. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500110/
Effects and Mediation of Child-centered Play Therapy on Young Children Who Are Anxious
Anxiety is one of the most pervasive childhood disorders, with a poor prognosis if left untreated. Traditional methods of treating anxiety have been less effective with young children. Based on theoretical assumptions regarding the potential effectiveness of child-centered play therapy (CCPT) as a treatment approach, I sought to explore the effects and mediating factors of CCPT on young children with symptoms of anxiety. Fifty-three participants between the ages of 6 to 8 years old were recruited from four elementary schools, including 36 males and 17 females. Of participants, 11 were African American, 24 were Caucasian, 10 were Hispanic/Latino, one was Asian, and seven were biracial. Twenty-five participants were randomly assigned to an experimental group receiving a mean of 15 sessions of individual CCPT, and 28 participants were assigned to an 8-session active control group. Five factorial analyses of variance (ANOVA) were conducted applying an alpha level of .05 for interpretation of statistical significance and Cohen’s d to assess practical significance. ANOVA results indicated a statistically significant interaction with a large effect size on Total Anxiety score of the Revised Children’s Manifest Anxiety Scale-2nd edition (p = .013, d = .715). Subscale ANOVA results indicated a statistically significant interaction effect with large effect size on the Worry subscale (p = .006, d = .795), no statistically significant interaction on the Defensiveness subscale (p = .710, d = .110), no statistically significant interaction but moderate effect size on the Physiological subscale (p = .076, d = .506), and no statistically significant interaction but moderate effect size on the Social Anxiety subscale (p = .162, d = .398). Statistically significant differences with large practical effects were found in total anxiety and worry, suggesting that children who received CCPT decreased their overall levels of anxiety and worry whereas children who were in the active control group increased their levels of anxiety and worry. When examining differences in relationships between groups, the CCPT group relationship scores were significantly higher than the control group relationship scores, as reported by counselors. Although the groups were different in their relationships, the relationship was not considered a statistical mediator of anxiety due to the lack of correlation between relationship scores and outcome. Overall, children seemed to benefit from CCPT, and it may be considered a viable treatment for children who are anxious. Due to the lack of mediation of relationship found in this study, further research is encouraged to consider other mediating and/or moderating effects when attempting to investigate the therapeutic relationship as a mediator. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500145/