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 Collection: UNT Theses and Dissertations
Optimization of Novel Culturing and Testing Procedures for Acute Effects on Acartia Tonsa and Tisbe Biminiensis

Optimization of Novel Culturing and Testing Procedures for Acute Effects on Acartia Tonsa and Tisbe Biminiensis

Date: December 2014
Creator: Ussery, Erin J
Description: Copepods comprise an ecologically important role in freshwater and marine ecosystems, which is why they are often considered an important ecotoxicological model organism. The International Organization for Standardization’s (ISO) 14669 protocol is the only guideline for the determination of acute toxicity in three European marine copepod species: Acartia tonsa. The goal of this project was to assess the feasibility of establishing and maintaining cultures of Acartia tonsa, as well as to refine current culturing and egg separation methods. Initial culture methodology proved difficult for consistent production of eggs and collection of nauplii. The development of an airlift system for the separation of eggs from nauplii and adults, based on size, successfully increased the availability of eggs, nauplii and adults. The sensitivity and relative conditions of the copepod species was assessed by running a series of 48h acute toxicity tests with the reference toxicants 3,5-dichlorophenol, 4,4’-methylenebis(2,6-di-tert-butylphenol. The acute 48 hour median lethal dose concentration (LC50), the no observed effect concentration (NOEC), and the lowest observed effect concentration (LOEC) was analyzed for the three reference compounds for of A. tonsa.
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Exploration of Visual, Acoustic, and Physiological Modalities to Complement Linguistic Representations for Sentiment Analysis

Exploration of Visual, Acoustic, and Physiological Modalities to Complement Linguistic Representations for Sentiment Analysis

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Date: December 2014
Creator: Pérez-Rosas, Verónica
Description: This research is concerned with the identification of sentiment in multimodal content. This is of particular interest given the increasing presence of subjective multimodal content on the web and other sources, which contains a rich and vast source of people's opinions, feelings, and experiences. Despite the need for tools that can identify opinions in the presence of diverse modalities, most of current methods for sentiment analysis are designed for textual data only, and few attempts have been made to address this problem. The dissertation investigates techniques for augmenting linguistic representations with acoustic, visual, and physiological features. The potential benefits of using these modalities include linguistic disambiguation, visual grounding, and the integration of information about people's internal states. The main goal of this work is to build computational resources and tools that allow sentiment analysis to be applied to multimodal data. This thesis makes three important contributions. First, it shows that modalities such as audio, video, and physiological data can be successfully used to improve existing linguistic representations for sentiment analysis. We present a method that integrates linguistic features with features extracted from these modalities. Features are derived from verbal statements, audiovisual recordings, thermal recordings, and physiological sensors signals. The resulting ...
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Trajectories As a Unifying Cross Domain Feature for Surveillance Systems

Trajectories As a Unifying Cross Domain Feature for Surveillance Systems

Date: December 2014
Creator: Wan, Yiwen
Description: Manual video analysis is apparently a tedious task. An efficient solution is of highly importance to automate the process and to assist operators. A major goal of video analysis is understanding and recognizing human activities captured by surveillance cameras, a very challenging problem; the activities can be either individual or interactional among multiple objects. It involves extraction of relevant spatial and temporal information from visual images. Most video analytics systems are constrained by specific environmental situations. Different domains may require different specific knowledge to express characteristics of interesting events. Spatial-temporal trajectories have been utilized to capture motion characteristics of activities. The focus of this dissertation is on how trajectories are utilized in assist in developing video analytic system in the context of surveillance. The research as reported in this dissertation begins real-time highway traffic monitoring and dynamic traffic pattern analysis and in the end generalize the knowledge to event and activity analysis in a broader context. The main contributions are: the use of the graph-theoretic dominant set approach to the classification of traffic trajectories; the ability to first partition the trajectory clusters using entry and exit point awareness to significantly improve the clustering effectiveness and to reduce the computational time ...
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Phantom Menace: the Effect of Narcissism on Word-of-mouth Communications

Phantom Menace: the Effect of Narcissism on Word-of-mouth Communications

Date: August 2014
Creator: Ngamsiriudom, Waros
Description: Previous empirical research and anecdotal accounts suggest that “subclinical narcissism” or “average Joe’s narcissism” is one of the most prevalent social phenomena in many parts of the world. Research also suggests that there will be an unprecedented escalation “in average Joe narcissists” among future generations of consumers. The objective of this study is two-fold. The first objective of this study is to explore the moderating effect of the individual’s level of narcissistic personality on their word-of-mouth (WOM) communications. The second objective of this study is to explore the boundary conditions of the first objective. The data were collected from a large number of consumers through Amazon Mechanical Turk. The results support many of the hypotheses accordant with the characteristics of the subclinical narcissistic individual. Specifically, the moderating effect of an individual’s level of narcissistic personality trait on the decision to engage in different types of WOM communications varies across the tested contexts. This study is intended to respond to social scientists' recent call for studies that investigate the fundamental motives behind the individual’s propensity to engage in WOM communication as a function of individual characteristics. The results of this study provide some prescriptive guidance to help companies target appropriate consumers ...
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Exploring Naming Behavior in Personal Digital Image Collections: the Iconology and Language Games of Pinterest

Exploring Naming Behavior in Personal Digital Image Collections: the Iconology and Language Games of Pinterest

Date: December 2014
Creator: Sutcliffe, Tami
Description: As non-institutional digital image collections expand into social media, independent non-professional image curators are emerging, actively constructing alternative naming conventions to suit their needs in a social collecting environment. This project considers how independent user-curators are developing particular sense-making behaviors as they actively contribute names to large, unstructured social image collections. In order to capture and explore this evolving language adaptation, Pinterest names are analyzed using a matrix composed of Panofsky’s three strata of subject matter, Rosch’s levels of categorical abstraction, Shatford Layne’s image attributes and Wittgenstein’s language game constructions. Analyzing Pinterest image names illuminates previously unnoticed behaviors by independent user-curators as they create shared collections. Exploring the various language choices which user-curators select as they apply this new curating vocabulary helps identify underlying user needs not apparent in traditionally curated collections restricted to traditional naming conventions.
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Conceptualizing Quality of College Life

Conceptualizing Quality of College Life

Date: August 2014
Creator: Cardona, Laura A.
Description: The objectives of this study were to mathematically model the quality of college life (QCL) concept and to study the associations between attachment style, emotion regulation abilities, psychological needs fulfillment and QCL via structural equation modeling. Data was collected from 507 undergraduate students (men = 178, women = 329; age M = 21.78 years, SD = 4.37). This data was used to provide evidence for the validity of the College Adjustment Scales (CAS) as a measure of quality of college life. The CAS demonstrated good convergent validity with the World Health Organization Quality of Life measure (WHOQOL), Subjective Well-being and Psychological Well-being Scales. Results: Students who were insecurely attached were as likely to feel adequate in their academic and professional endeavors as securely attached students. However, insecurely attached students had lower QCL levels, lower fulfillment of psychological needs and more emotion regulation difficulties than securely attached students. The results also indicated that Anxious Attachment and Avoidant Attachment were positively and strongly associated. Nonetheless, Anxious Attachment and Avoidant Attachment affected QCL through different mechanism. Emotion regulation mediated the path between Anxious Attachment and QCL while the fulfillment of psychological needs mediated the path between Avoidant Attachment and QCL. The fulfillment of ...
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Design Space Exploration of Domain Specific Cgras Using Crowd-sourcing

Design Space Exploration of Domain Specific Cgras Using Crowd-sourcing

Date: August 2014
Creator: Sistla, Anil Kumar
Description: CGRAs (coarse grained reconfigurable array architectures) try to fill the gap between FPGAs and ASICs. Over three decades, the research towards CGRA design has produced number of architectures. Each of these designs lie at different points on a line drawn between FPGAs and ASICs, depending on the tradeoffs and design choices made during the design of architectures. Thus, design space exploration (DSE) takes a very important role in the circuit design process. In this work I propose the design space exploration of CGRAs can be done quickly and efficiently through crowd-sourcing and a game driven approach based on an interactive mapping game UNTANGLED and a design environment called SmartBricks. Both UNTANGLED and SmartBricks have been developed by our research team at Reconfigurable Computing Lab, UNT. I present the results of design space exploration of domain-specific reconfigurable architectures and compare the results comparing stripe vs mesh style, heterogeneous vs homogeneous. I also compare the results obtained from different interconnection topologies in mesh. These results show that this approach offers quick DSE for designers and also provides low power architectures for a suite of benchmarks. All results were obtained using standard cell ASICs with 90 nm process.
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Complex Ptsd As a Less Pejorative Label: Is the Proposed Diagnosis Less Stigmatizing Than Bpd?

Complex Ptsd As a Less Pejorative Label: Is the Proposed Diagnosis Less Stigmatizing Than Bpd?

Date: August 2014
Creator: Miller, Susannah
Description: Clinicians’ attitudes and behaviors toward patients with borderline personality disorder (BPD) are affected by the label’s stigma. Complex posttraumatic stress disorder (CPTSD) was proposed as a comprehensive and less stigmatizing diagnostic category for clients with BPD and a history of complex trauma. Given considerable similarities across both disorders’ diagnostic criteria, the CPTSD framework holds promise as a means to improve therapists’ attitudes towards clients with BPD and a history of complex trauma. However, this quality of CPTSD had not yet been examined empirically. Using vignettes in a between-subjects experimental design, this study investigated whether CPTSD is a less stigmatizing label than BPD for trauma survivors. Participants were 322 practicing psychotherapists. Evidence of BPD stigma was found, as was an affinity for CPTSD. Results generally supported CPTSD as a less stigmatizing label than BPD; therapists presented with a CPTSD-labeled vignette were somewhat less likely to blame the client for her symptomatic behavior and expected slightly stronger working alliance with the client than therapists presented with the BPD-labeled vignette. However, therapists’ agreement with the BPD diagnosis and theoretical orientation were found to be more salient than diagnostic label in affecting concepts related to the stigmatization of BPD clients. Additionally, familiarity with CPTSD ...
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The Influence of Perceived Stress on Insulin Resistance in Adults with Type 2 Diabetes

The Influence of Perceived Stress on Insulin Resistance in Adults with Type 2 Diabetes

Date: August 2014
Creator: Phillips, Amanda S.
Description: Objective: To identify whether perceived stress is a risk-factor for higher cortisol levels and greater insulin resistance in Type 2 diabetic patients, using data from participants with and without diabetes in the National Survey of Midlife Development in the United States (MIDUS), specifically MIDUS II, Project 4. The following hypotheses were tested: (H1a) greater perceived stress would be associated with higher cortisol for Type 2 diabetic participants, (H1b) the perceived stress/cortisol relationship would be stronger for people with Type 2 diabetes than for those without it, (H2) greater perceived stress would be associated with higher Homeostatic Model Assessment-Insulin Resistance (HOMA-IR, insulin-resistance) for Type 2 diabetic participants, (H3a) subjective well-being would moderate the perceived stress/insulin resistance relationship for Type 2 diabetic participants, and (H3b) depression would moderate the perceived stress/insulin resistance relationship for Type 2 diabetic participants. Method: MIDUS, a longitudinal study of over 7,000 American adults, explores biopsychosocial factors that could contribute to variance in mental/physical health. Only complete data were utilized. Type 2 participants (n=115) consisted of 54 males and 62 females ranging in age from 36 to 81 years. Non-diabetic participants (n=1097) consisted of 470 males and 627 females ranging in age from 34 to 84 years. Results: ...
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Children’s Experiences in the Therapeutic Relationship: Development and Validation of a Self-report Measure

Children’s Experiences in the Therapeutic Relationship: Development and Validation of a Self-report Measure

Date: August 2014
Creator: Purswell, Katherine E.
Description: Most counselors agree that the therapeutic relationship is essential in counseling. However, the current evidence-based treatment movement has resulted in a focus on treatment protocols and techniques in outcome research. Researchers have called for the inclusion of relationship variables in future outcome research. Child-centered play therapy (CCPT) is an empirically-supported, developmentally responsive intervention for children that emphasizes building a therapeutic relationship based on the philosophy of person-centered theory. Exploring the impact of the relationship on CCPT outcomes would be beneficial, but no current quantitative measure exists for obtaining the child’s view of the therapeutic relationship. The purpose of this study was to create a developmentally appropriate instrument to measure children’s perceptions of the therapeutic relationship. Established instrument development procedures were followed to create the Relationship Inventory for Children (RIC), a 15-item instrument for use in outcome research that measures the child’s perspective of the therapeutic relationship. Participants were 33 child experts who participated in interviews and preliminary testing of the instrument as well as 100 children whose scores on the 31-item pilot instrument were submitted to exploratory factor analysis (EFA). Children (62% male) ranged in age from 6 to 9 years (M = 6.92) and 53% identified as Caucasian, 14% ...
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