UNT Theses and Dissertations - 194 Matching Results

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It's Not Fusion: Hybridity in the Music of Vijay Iyer and Rudresh Mahanthappa

Description: This thesis concerns the performance of identity in the music of Indian American jazz musicians Rudresh Mahanthappa and Vijay Iyer. In combining the use of Indian classical music elements with jazz, Iyer and Mahanthappa create music that is inextricably tied to their multifaceted identities. Traditional musicological analysis is juxtaposed with a theoretical framework that draws on postcolonial theory and the history of Asian immigrant populations to the U.S. I chronicle the interactions between Indian and Western music and link it to larger issues of Asian American identity formation and activism through music. Through interviews and transcriptions of studio recordings, I identify specific compositional and improvisational strategies of the musicians. I emphasize the role of individual agency in the formation of second-generation identities, drawing attention to the distinct ways that Iyer and Mahanthappa approach their music. Finally, I connect this research to a larger discourse on Indian American artistic identity.
Date: December 2012
Creator: Govind, Arathi
Partner: UNT Libraries

Laser Modified Alumina: a Computational and Experimental Analysis

Description: Laser surface modification involves rapid melting and solidification is an elegant technique used for locally tailoring the surface morphology of alumina in order to enhance its abrasive characteristics. COMSOL Multiphysics® based heat transfer modeling and experimental approaches were designed and used in this study for single and multiple laser tracks to achieve densely-packed multi-facet grains via temperature history, cooling rate, solidification, scanning electron micrographs, and wear rate. Multi-facet grains were produced at the center of laser track with primary dendrites extending toward the edge of single laser track. The multiple laser tracks study indicates the grain/dendrite size increases as the laser energy density increases resulting in multiplying the abrasive edges which in turn enhance the abrasive qualities.
Date: December 2012
Creator: Moncayo, Marco Antonio
Partner: UNT Libraries

Modest Musorgsky's Early Songs: Uncommon Lyricisms Within a Simple Framework

Description: Modest Musorgsky is considered a composer of masterful vocal, symphonic, and piano works. His songs and song cycles distinguish themselves as evocative of the broad spectrum of Russian experience. However, Musorgsky's early songs have not received as much attention as his larger works, such as Boris Godunov or Pictures at an Exhibition. Musorgsky's early songs, from 1857-1867, show the composer's affinity for lyrical expression, be it brightly melodious, impassioned, or within a comical or satirical vein. He portrays Russian life through a mixture of different genres such as the Russian romance, the ballad, the operatic aria, and also vaudeville. This study focuses on Musorgsky's choice of texts, his penning of several of them, and the way he incorporates them within each song.
Date: December 2012
Creator: Gunter, Sheila
Partner: UNT Libraries

A New Chromophoric Organic Molecule Toward Improved Molecular Optoelectronic Devices

Description: The characterization of 2,3,6,7,10,11-hexabromotriphenylene, Br6TP, is presented toward its potential use as an n-type organic semiconductor and metal-free room temperature phosphor. The crystal structure shows both anisotropic two-dimensional BrBr interactions and inter-layer ?-stacking interactions. Photophysical characteristics were evaluated using solid-state photoluminescence and diffuse reflectance spectroscopies, revealing significantly red-shifted excitations in the visible region for the yellow solid material (compared to ultraviolet absorption bands for the colorless dilute solutions). Correlation of spectral, electrochemical, and computational data suggest the presence of an n-type semiconducting behavior due to the electron-poor aromatic ring. The material shows excellent thermal stability as demonstrated by thermogravimetric analysis and infrared spectra of a thin film deposited by thermal evaporation. The potential for Br6TP and its analogues toward use in several types of photonic and electronic devices is discussed.
Date: December 2012
Creator: Halbert, Jason Paul
Partner: UNT Libraries

No Greater Error: Negotiated Agreements and Their Effects on the Conclusion of Interstate War

Description: Negotiated settlements, formal treaties to unilateral cease-fires, are often accepted to be the preferable method to end war. When negotiated agreements are used in the normal business of international politics they can be potentially helpful devices; however, when they are relied upon for a nation's security or war prevention and conclusion they can prove disastrous. It is the presence of force variables, and not the formality of an agreement which effectively concludes a war. I recategorize success of an agreement to not only mean failure of a return to war, but also whether the tenets of an agreement are actually followed. I utilize a modified version of Fortna's conflict dataset and run three separate logit analyses to test the effectiveness of settlements in a medium n quantitative analysis. If politicians and policy makers realize that it is not treaties that establish peace but the costs of war and military might then perhaps the world will be a more peaceful place.
Date: December 2012
Creator: Kendall, David F.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Noisefold

Description: This documentary film follows the group NoiseFold as they rehearse and perform their unique style of interactive video art before an enthusiastic audience. Originally hailing from the vibrant art community in Santa Fe, New Mexico, founders David Stout and Cory Metcalf return home to prepare for a special performance along with the addition of collaborator and cellist, Frances-Marie Uitti. Shot in black and white, the film aesthetically borrows from early cinema and incorporates a blend of cinéma-vérité and direct cinema styles for the purposes of creating a film that is both visually and sonically rich.
Date: December 2012
Creator: Lewis, Robert
Partner: UNT Libraries

Relationships Among Self-esteem, Psychological and Cognitive Flexibility, and Psychological Symptomatology

Description: Previous findings on the relationship between self-esteem and psychological outcomes are inconsistent. Therefore it appears that self-esteem, while related to crucial variables, does not provide a clear, direct, and comprehensive prediction of psychological symptoms. Thus, it was hypothesized that the relationship between self-esteem and symptomatology would be moderated by broader measures of how one interacts with emotional and cognitive stimuli.The purpose of this study was to examine the influence of self-esteem, psychological flexibility, and cognitive flexibility on psychological symptomatology. A sample of 82 undergraduate students at the University of North Texas completed self-report questionnaires measuring low self-esteem, psychological flexibility, measured inversely as inflexibility, cognitive flexibility, and psychological symptoms. Results of the study suggest that self-esteem (?= -0.59, p < 0.001) and flexibility (both psychological (?= 0.36, p = 0.001) and cognitive (?= 0.21, p < 0.05) are significant predictors of psychological symptoms. In other words, self-esteem is positively correlated with psychological symptoms, while psychological and cognitive flexibility are negatively correlated with psychological symptoms. Neither form of flexibility moderated the relationship between self-esteem and psychological symptoms in this sample. The findings of the current study are discussed as well as suggestions for further research related to self-esteem, psychological and cognitive flexibility, and their impact on psychological outcomes.
Date: December 2012
Creator: Al-Jabari, Rawya, M.
Partner: UNT Libraries

A Schoolwide Tiered Intervention for Increasing Fruit and Vegetable Consumption

Description: Childhood obesity rates in the U.S. are increasing. Increasing intake of fruits and vegetables is one method to combat obesity. The purpose of this study was to examine a tiered approach to fruit and vegetable consumption with 26 children in an inclusive preschool. The first tier included ongoing availability and opportunity to eat fruits and vegetables (exposure). The second tier included programmed consequences (a reward system). A multiple baseline across children and classrooms was used to evaluate the effect of the interventions. The tier one intervention was effective for nine children and tier two was effective for six children. Eleven children, however, did not respond to either condition. Results are discussed in the context of previous research and tertiary interventions.
Date: December 2012
Creator: Mendoza, Blanca L.
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Sex Offender Registry in Collin County, Texas: a Descriptive Analysis of Sex Offenders

Description: The primary goal of this study was to analyze the characteristics of current registered sex offenders in Collin County, Texas, as well as to compare age and gender of the victims of these offenders in order to know who sex offenders primarily target in these crimes. The study also sought to discover geographic patterns of where the registered sex offenders reside for the purpose of keeping communities aware. Participants consisted of 175 registered sex offenders (N = 175) in Collin County, Texas, found on Collin County's and the Texas Department of Public Safety's online public registries. The findings demonstrate that there were significant trends among the sex offenders, their victims, location of residence, and housing complications as a result of progressing sex offender laws. Treatment programs and the reintegration of offenders in the community were also addressed. The meaning of the results in this study can aid in the development of safety and prevention strategies, provide an understanding about the utilization of sex offender registries, and can benefit law enforcement to predict the movement of current sex offenders, along with knowing where to find other potential offenders.
Date: December 2012
Creator: Valenzuela, Priscilla
Partner: UNT Libraries

Sibling Relationship Quality: Associations with Marital and Coparenting Subsystems

Description: Marital relationships play an important role in family functioning and in the development of sibling relationships. From a family systems perspective, other subsystems within the family, such as coparenting interactions, could explain the effects of the marital relationship on sibling bonds. Specifically, the quality of the coparenting relationship may mediate the association between marital functioning and sibling relationship quality. The current study examined relationships between these three subsystems (marital, coparenting, and sibling) as self-reported by mothers, fathers, and children with siblings. As part of a larger project, families with a child aged 8 to 11 and at least one sibling (N = 75) completed the Dyadic Adjustment Scale and the Coparenting Scale (both completed by mother and father), as well as the Sibling Relationship Questionnaire (completed by target child). Results suggested that marital functioning is a significant predictor of functioning within the coparenting relationship. Predicted associations did not emerge between sibling relationship quality and marital or coparenting relationships, with minor exceptions, and the coparenting relationship did not mediate the association between marital and sibling relationship quality. Implications of the current findings and suggestions for future research are discussed.
Date: December 2012
Creator: Guinn, Megan D.
Partner: UNT Libraries

A Silent Cry: Visualizing Data on Sex Trafficking

Description: In this era of globalization, human trafficking is emerging as a major theme, with rapid movement of information, capital and people across international borders. Despite the red alert over the issue, the crime of human trafficking remains highly unreported even in the most developed countries like United States of America. This silence over the issue in this country can be attributed to the lack of awareness about its prevalence in our own back yard and the measures available against it. This silence is further compounded by economic, social, cultural and psychological factors. Acknowledging the need to break the silence over this globalized issue, A Silent Cry is an interdisciplinary response in the form of a documentary film. It combines the strengths of cinema and anthropology attempting to humanize the data available on the phenomena. This document contextualizes the issue dealt in the documentary and along with an insight into its production process.
Date: December 2012
Creator: Singh, Arvind Daman
Partner: UNT Libraries

Similarities and Differences in Borderline and Other Symptomology Among Women Survivors of Interpersonal Trauma with and Without Complex Ptsd

Description: Women interpersonal chronic trauma survivors are frequently misdiagnosed with borderline personality disorder (BPD) or post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), which often results in mistreatment. Neither PTSD nor BPD adequately describes the unique character alterations observed among those exposed to prolonged early childhood trauma. Researchers suggest survivors of interpersonal and chronic trauma should be subsumed under complex PTSD (CPTSD)(MacLean & Gallop, 2003). The primary purpose of this study was to test the validity of complex PTSD as a construct. MANOVA, ANOVA, chi- Square, and independent samples t- Tests were utilized to test hypotheses. Results revealed that women who experienced higher frequencies of trauma met more CPTSD criteria and had higher mean base rate scores on the Major Depression, Depressive, Avoidant, Masochistic, Anxiety, PTSD, and Borderline scales of the MCMI- III than women who experienced fewer traumas. Additionally, findings suggest that the Major Depression, Depressive, Anxiety, PTSD, and Borderline scales may highlight differences among women interpersonal trauma survivors who meet five of six CPTSD criteria versus those who meet full CPTSD diagnostic criteria. Lastly, the mean Borderline scale score for women who met full CPTSD diagnostic criteria was below the cutoff for personality traits. Overall, these findings provide evidence and validation for the distinction of CPTSD from BPD and PTSD.
Date: December 2012
Creator: Marchesani, Estee Simpkins
Partner: UNT Libraries

Slogans and Opposition Political Culture: Online Discourse in Iran's Green Movement

Description: In this study I investigate the Iranian Green Movement supporters' use of slogans as political discourse on the Persian-language opposition website www.kaleme.com. Data was collected from the website's Kaleme section in the form of 22 articles and 3,500 user comments. A coding scheme was constructed to measure the presence of categories and themes in the site's comments section. Findings support the propositions of narrative theorists (e.g. Franzosi, 1998; Benford, 1993) that frequent use of slogans in the comments may reflect a unique cultural element of Persian-language political discourse and reinforce the Green Movement's narrative of opposition to the government.
Date: December 2012
Creator: Ryan, Trent
Partner: UNT Libraries

Solid Lubrication Mechanisms in Laser Deposited Nickel-titanium-carbon Metal Matrix Composites

Description: A Ni/TiC/C metal matrix composite (MMC) has been processed using the laser engineered net shaping (LENS) process from commercially available powders with a Ni-3Ti-20C (atomic %) composition. This processing route produces the in-situ formation of homogeneously distributed eutectic and primary titanium carbide and graphite precipitates throughout the Ni matrix. The composite exhibits promising tribological properties when tested in dry sliding conditions with a low steady state coefficient of friction (CoF) of ~0.1 and lower wear rates in comparison to LENS deposited pure Ni. The as deposited and tribologically worn composite has been characterized using Auger electron spectroscopy, scanning electron microscopy (SEM), X-ray diffraction, high resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM) with energy dispersive spectroscopy (EDS), dual beam focused ion beam SEM (FIB/SEM) serial sectioning and Vickers micro-hardness testing. The evolution of subsurface stress states and precipitate motion during repeated sliding contact has been investigated using finite element analysis (FEA). The results of FIB/SEM serial sectioning, HRTEM, and Auger electron spectroscopy in conjunction with FEA simulations reveal that the improved tribological behavior is due to the in-situ formation of a low interfacial shear strength amorphous carbon tribofilm that is extruded to the surface via refined Ni grain boundaries.
Date: December 2012
Creator: Mogonye, Jon-Erik
Partner: UNT Libraries

Somatostatin Receptors on Neuronal Cilia: Evidence for Neuroprotection

Description: Primary cilia are essential in brain development, as mediators of sonic hedgehog signaling. However, their role in mature neurons remains elusive. One means to elucidate their function may be to investigate the function of the somatostatin type 3 receptor (SstR3), which is concentrated on the primary cilia of neurons. The inhibitory and anticonvulsant properties of somatostatin suggest that ciliary SstR3 might protect neurons against excitotoxicity, as seen in epileptic seizures. C57BL/6 wild type (wt) and SstR3 knockout mice were administered vehicle or epileptogenic agents kainic acid (KA) or pentylenetetrazole. Seizure behaviors were rated on seizure severity scales. KA-induced seizure behaviors were more severe in SstR3 mutants than in wt. Correspondingly, the mutants showed greater reactive gliosis, as indicated by increased numbers of GFAP immunoreactive (GFAP(+)) astrocyte processes. In addition, seizure severity was associated with a greater percentage of neural stem cells having an ACIII(+) cilium. Following injections of pentylenetetrazole, SstR3 mutants reached maximum seizure levels faster than wt. These results support the hypothesis that ciliary SstR3 are neuroprotective in mature neurons, and may provide a new avenue for the treatment of seizures.
Date: December 2012
Creator: Evans, Shakila K.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Spatio-temporal Variation of Nitrate Levels in Groundwater in Texas, 1970 to 2010

Description: This study looks at spatial variation of groundwater nitrate in Texas and its fluctuations at 10 year increments using data from the Texas Water Development Board. While groundwater nitrate increased in the Ogallala and Seymour aquifers across the time period, the overall rate in Texas appears to be declining as time progresses. However, the available data is limited. Findings show that a much more targeted, knowledge based strategy for sampling would not only reduce the cost of water quality analysis but also reduce the risk of error in these analyses by providing a more realistic picture of the spatial variation of problem contaminants, thereby giving decision-makers a clearer picture on how best to handle the reduction and elimination of problem contaminants.
Date: December 2012
Creator: Rice, Susan C.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Staying Connected: Technology Use in Grandparent-grandchild Relationships

Description: Despite the distance that often separates grandparents from their young adult grandchildren, the abundance of new technologies provides numerous means of connection for the grandparent-grandchild (GP-GC) dyad. The purpose of this study was to understand how grandparents use technology, namely text messaging and Facebook, in relationships with their young adult grandchildren. Specifically, the aim was to understand grandparents' purposes for using these technologies with their grandchildren, their motivations for using these technologies, and their perceptions of these technologies. Qualitative interviews were conducted with 23 grandparent participants and analyzed according to the procedures delineated in grounded theory analysis. Both text messaging and Facebook emerged as important tools for connection, as text messaging encourages more frequent communication and Facebook helps grandparents "fill in the gaps" about their grandchildren's lives. Furthermore, results indicated that grandparents' uses of text messaging, and to a lesser extent Facebook, are acts of accommodation to their grandchildren.
Date: December 2012
Creator: Novak, Hannah R.
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Structural Determinants of Americans' Justice Perceptions Toward Inequality in the U.S.

Description: In accordance with structural theory and distributive justice theory, this study investigates if Americans' personal encounters with the opportunity structure and their existing reward conditions will influence their perceptions toward distribution outcomes in the U.S. I argue that higher-status individuals possessing various "attributes of structural privilege" will exhibit less support for regulating income inequality in society than lower-status individuals. Upward mobility should also be negatively related to support for restoring greater equality in allocation outcomes. However, the effect of mobility on justice perceptions should vary by class status, since class has been known to be a reliable predictor of these attitudes. The study employed a sample of 438 American adults from the GSS 2000 dataset, and ordinary least squares (OLS) regression was applied in the analyses of the data. Two of the three above hypotheses received partial confirmation, that is, there were class, race, and gender differences in distributive justice perceptions. Class also interacted significantly with occupational mobility in altering distributive justice perceptions.
Date: December 2012
Creator: Ong, Corinne
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Use of Conjugate Reinforcement in Autism Treatment Programs: a Demonstration and Discussion

Description: The effect of a reinforcer on behavior is largely determined by the schedule in which it is implemented. One type of reinforcement schedule that has not been explored extensively is conjugate reinforcement. Previous researchers have used conjugate schedules to evaluate a reinforcer's effects on behavior and as an assessment tool. However, none have explored how to effectively engineer conjugate schedules in applied settings. The current study explores the effectiveness of conjugate reinforcement implemented by several interventionists across a variety of responses, reinforcers, and in a wide range of participants with autism. The results indicated that delivering social, audio/visual, and tangible stimuli in a conjugate schedule resulted in increased durations of various target responses (e.g. social skills, motor skills) and non-targeted measures (e.g., approach, social bids, speed) across participants. Considerations regarding reinforcer and response selection in implementing conjugate schedules in applied settings are provided.
Date: December 2012
Creator: Reetz, Stephany Kristina
Partner: UNT Libraries

Variations in Suicidal Ideation Among Substance Users

Description: Research suggests that substance use is a risk factor for increased suicidal ideation. This study explored the relationship between substance use, suicidal ideation, and impulsivity in a sample of college students and individuals seeking outpatient treatment. Participants were interviewed for information on severity of suicidal ideation and substance use. Participants completed the Psychiatric Diagnostic Screening Questionnaire, the substance use section of the Structured Clinical Interview for the DSM-IV, the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test, the Scale for Suicide Ideation, and the UPPS-P Impulsivity Behavior Scale. These measures were used to determine the amount of variance in suicidal ideation accounted for by substance use. Variables reflecting substance use classification, frequency, and severity were used to predict severity of suicidal ideation.
Date: December 2012
Creator: Nichols, Erica
Partner: UNT Libraries

Zero Anaphora and Meithei

Description: The focus of this thesis is to determine what factors predict zero anaphora in Meithei. The data for this thesis is derived from pear stories. Arguments were tabulated in spreadsheets counting nouns, pronouns, and zero anaphors; they were also examined for their semantic role and information status. The findings showed the agent role was typically represented by reduced forms of reference, the majority of the time by zero anaphora. Other semantic roles were typically represented by lexical full forms of reference. Agents were strongly correlated to previous subjects. Other semantic roles were typically found in the other information status categories. The conclusion drawn from these findings is semantic role and information status influence accessibility, and accessibility determines whether or not arguments are represented by zero anaphors in Meithei.
Date: December 2012
Creator: Cockerham, Terence
Partner: UNT Libraries

Acculturation and Depression in Older Mexican American Adults: the Role of Social Support

Description: Despite socioeconomic disadvantages, less acculturated Mexican Americans tend to exhibit better mental health than their more acculturated counterparts. However, in the case of older Mexican American adults, research has demonstrated the opposite to be true (Gonzalez, Haan, & Hinton, 2001). A variable of interest potentially responsible for this difference is social support. Thus, the current study proposed to investigate the mediation and moderation effects that social support has on the relationship between acculturation and depression in older Mexican American adults age 60 or older. Data from the Health and Retirement Study (HRS) was analyzed. Results showed that the mediating effect of contact with one’s children (-.109*) and the moderating effect of total social support and contact with one’s children (-.127*; -.103*) were statistically significant in the relationship between acculturation and depression. Although these effects are small they may still hold important implications for better understanding this population.
Date: August 2012
Creator: Caballero, Daniela
Partner: UNT Libraries

An Assessment of Fruit Offerings for 7Th and 8Th Grade Students in Texas

Description: Childhood obesity in America is reaching epidemic proportions. This study explored whether daily online lunch menu information was sufficient to enable parents to advise their children about healthy and unhealthy menu choices in 350 Texas middle schools and whether online menu information strongly correlated with the descriptions of the offerings given by 52 school cafeteria managers in telephone interviews. Although schools are making efforts to describe their offerings, they are not vigorously taking advantage of the opportunity to aggressively inform or educate. They are not coding their descriptions in such a way as to explicitly brand food as healthy or unhealthy. They are also not labeling food as generally required by law for consumer services that provide food (except for the fresh produce that lines supermarket shelves). Instead, they only briefly describe what they are serving in the way of fruit in one or two word snippets. Finally, cafeteria managers’ online descriptions were inconsistent with what they described in interviews. Online and verbal descriptions were sometimes contradictory, raising questions about the accuracy of either type of description.
Date: August 2012
Creator: Paschal, Ryan Tyler
Partner: UNT Libraries

Automatic Tagging of Communication Data

Description: Globally distributed software teams are widespread throughout industry. But finding reliable methods that can properly assess a team's activities is a real challenge. Methods such as surveys and manual coding of activities are too time consuming and are often unreliable. Recent advances in information retrieval and linguistics, however, suggest that automated and/or semi-automated text classification algorithms could be an effective way of finding differences in the communication patterns among individuals and groups. Communication among group members is frequent and generates a significant amount of data. Thus having a web-based tool that can automatically analyze the communication patterns among global software teams could lead to a better understanding of group performance. The goal of this thesis, therefore, is to compare automatic and semi-automatic measures of communication and evaluate their effectiveness in classifying different types of group activities that occur within a global software development project. In order to achieve this goal, we developed a web-based component that can be used to help clean and classify communication activities. The component was then used to compare different automated text classification techniques on various group activities to determine their effectiveness in correctly classifying data from a global software development team project.
Date: August 2012
Creator: Hoyt, Matthew Ray
Partner: UNT Libraries