UNT Theses and Dissertations - 151 Matching Results

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Interpersonal Factors Related to the Pursuit of a Higher Education Among First Generation Undergraduate Students

Description: The typical educational stressors experienced by college students, in conjunction with developmental stressors such as separation from parents, individuation, and perceived social support, can interact to impact adaptation significantly. First generation college students (students who are the first in their family to attend college) can experience stressors beyond the typical educational stressors experienced by later generation college students, including lack of support from family and peers as well as financial difficulties that can interact to impact the pursuit of an education beyond the undergraduate level. The present study examined factors that may be especially influential in the pursuit of a higher education for first generation college students. Results indicated that aspects of family enmeshment were related to academic motivation for first generation students, but not for later generation students. Exploratory analysis showed that family and finances were mentioned more often among first generation students when compared to later generation students as stressors that strongly influence the desire to continue beyond the undergraduate level.
Date: May 2012
Creator: Aguirre, Jacqueline S.
Partner: UNT Libraries

General Satisfaction of Students in 100% Online Courses in the Department of Learning Technologies at the University of North Texas

Description: The purpose of this study was to examine whether there are significant relationships between the general satisfaction of students and learner-content interaction, learner-instructor interaction, learner-learner interaction, and learner-technology interaction in 100% online courses. There were 310 responses from the students. This study did not use data from duplicate students and instructors. Excel was used to find duplicate students and instructors; therefore, 128 responses were deleted. After examination of box plots, an additional four cases were removed because they were outliers on seven or more variables. Nineteen responses were deleted because they did not answer all questions of interest, resulting in a total sample of 159 students. Multiple regression analysis was used to examine the relationship between the four independent variables and the dependent variable. In addition to tests for statistical significance, practical significance was evaluated with the multiple R2 , which reported the common variance between independent variables and dependent variable. The two variables of learner-content and learner-instructor interaction play a significant role in predicting online satisfaction. Minimally, the variable learner-technology can predict online satisfaction and is an important construct that must be considered when offering online courses. Results of this study provide help in establishing a valid and reliable survey instrument and in developing an online best learning environment, as well as recommendations for institutions offering online learning or considering the development of online learning courses.
Date: May 2012
Creator: Ahn, Byungmun
Partner: UNT Libraries

Consumer Perception of Brand Equity Measurement: a New Scale

Description: Brand equity is perhaps the most important marketing concept in both academia and practice. The term came into use during the late 1980s; and the importance of conceptualizing, measuring, and managing brand equity has grown rapidly in the eyes of practitioners and academics alike. This has resulted in several often-divergent view-points on the dimensions of brand equity, the factors that influence it, the perspectives from which it should be studied, and the ways to measure it. Many different definitions and ways to measure brand equity have been proposed, and most of them are based upon the definition: the added value with which a given brand endows a product. The two most influential conceptualizations of brand equity are Aaker and Keller. Aaker defines brand equity as a set of brand assets and liabilities linked to a brand, its name and symbol, that add to or subtract from the value provided by a product or service to a firm and/or to that firm’s customers. Keller defines consumer-based brand equity (CBBE) as the differential effect of brand knowledge on consumer response to the marketing of the brand. Currently, all research on brand equity has used the same conceptualization of the construct based on previously determined dimensions with no attempt to argue their validity. Given the importance of the concept of brand equity in marketing, as well as the need for the measurement of brand equity, the literature lacks an empirically based consumer-perceived brand equity scale. Since the brand is the consumer’s idea, the consumer is an active participant in the creation of equity for the brand. So if we want to understand and manage the intangible equity directly, we have to have the consumer’s help. This dissertation enriches and strengthens the current knowledge on brand equity by developing a new conceptualization and scale ...
Date: May 2012
Creator: Baalbaki, Sally Samih
Partner: UNT Libraries

Ecological Significance and Underlying Mechanisms of Body Size Differentiation in White-tailed Deer

Description: Body size varies according to nutritional availability, which is of ecological and evolutionary relevance. The purpose of this study is to test the hypothesis that differences in adult body size are realized by increasing juvenile growth rate for white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus). Harvest records are used to construct growth rate estimates by empirical nonlinear curve fitting. Results are compared to those of previous models that include additional parameters. The rate of growth increases during the study period. Models that estimate multiple parameters may not work with harvest data in which estimates of these parameters are prone to error, which renders estimates from complex models too variable to detect inter-annual changes in growth rate that this simpler model captures
Date: May 2012
Creator: Barr, Brannon
Partner: UNT Libraries

Mental Toughness: An Analysis of Sex, Race, and Mood

Description: Mental toughness has become a focus for researchers as coaches, athletes, and others extol its influence in performance success. In this study I examined mental toughness among collegiate athletes, focusing on its potential relationship to different demographic variables and to the athletes’ mood. Two hundred seventy-two student-athletes representing 12 different sports from a southwestern NCAA Division I university, participated by completing the Sports Mental Toughness Questionnaire (SMTQ), the Brief Assessment of Mood (BAM), and providing demographic information. Analyses of variance (ANOVA) assessed differences in mental toughness scores by sex, race, scholarship status, and starting status. Significant differences in mental toughness emerged between Black – White, male – female, and full – partial – zero scholarship athletes. Pearson correlations showed mental toughness was significantly related to lower levels of anxiety, sadness, anger, confusion, fatigue, and total mood disturbance, and higher levels of vigor.
Date: May 2012
Creator: Beck, Nicholas M.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Childhood Bereavement and Parents’ Relationship With Children

Description: It has long been recognized that childhood bereavement is a risk factor for depression in adulthood. Research also has consistently demonstrated that parental depression is linked to poor parent-child relationship quality. The current study examined whether bereavement in childhood increases likelihood of current depressive symptoms among parents and explored whether this vulnerability in the parent then alters the quality of the parent-child relationship. Archival data for a sample of 86 families (N=176 parents) are drawn from the Family & Kid Connection project led by Dr. Shelley Riggs. Instruments utilized include the Background Information Questionnaire, the Symptom Assessment-45 Questionnaire, and the Parenting Relationship Questionnaire. Using the Actor-Partner Interdependence Model, Multilevel Modeling procedures explored the hypothesis that parental depression mediates the association between parents’ childhood bereavement and their perception of the parent-child relationship. Results show a significant relationship between parental (actor) depressive symptoms and parent-child attachment, indicating the need for therapeutic interventions targeting the parent-child relationship, and not just parents, for parents suffering from depression.
Date: May 2012
Creator: Benson, Karen M.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Never Odd Or Even: Using Temporal Structures In Composing Music For Dance

Description: This study engages the collaboration of dance and music, focusing primarily on experiences in the production of a large scale collaborative concert entitled Never Odd or Even. Famous historical collaborations offer archetypal collaborative models, the more unconventional of which are applied to the pieces of the concert. Issues and observations regarding cross-influence, project evolution, and application of the collaborative models are engaged to determine effective means of collaboration given different circumstances. The key focus of the study, the temporal relationship between music and dance, is explored in great detail to determine three models for relating time between music and dance. These temporal relationship models are applied to the pieces and evaluated on effectiveness and potential strengths when applied to dance.
Date: May 2012
Creator: Bernardo, Daniel
Partner: UNT Libraries

Effects of Layer Double Hydroxide Nanoclays on the Toxicity of Copper to Daphnia Magna

Description: Nanoparticles may affect secondary pollutants such as copper. Layer Double Hydroxides (LDH) are synthetically produced nanoparticles that adsorb copper via cation exchange. Pretreatment of copper test solutions with LDH nanoparticles followed by filtration removal of LDH nanoparticles demonstrated the smallest LDH aggregates removed the most copper toxicity. This was due to increased surface area for cation exchange relative to larger particle aggregates. Co-exposure tests of copper chloride and clay were run to determine if smaller clay particles increased copper uptake by D. magna. Coexposure treatments had lower LC50 values compared to the filtration tests, likely as a result of additive toxicity. LDH nanoclays do reduce copper toxicity in Daphnia magna and may serve as a remediation tool.
Date: May 2012
Creator: Blake, Deanne Renee
Partner: UNT Libraries

A Study of the Technological, Instructional, and Motivational Factors Affecting Phr Certification Exam Outcomes

Description: Although previous studies have considered the factors affecting other certification exam outcomes, they have not examined those that are related to performance on the Professional in Human Resources (PHR) exam. In response to that need, this study specifically investigates technology and training factors that affect self-efficacy and self-set goals, and through them, influence PHR certification exam results. The target population for the study consisted of recent examinees who had taken a formal PHR examination preparation class or used another form of exam preparation training. The survey results were analyzed using partial least squares modeling techniques, and mediation effects were then tested. The results demonstrated that PHR training self-efficacy affected PHR exam self-efficacy and self-set goals. These factors then had an impact on PHR exam scores. Also, the results of task-technology fit were indirectly related to PHR training self-efficacy through a multiple mediation model that included the instructional factor of time on task and the technology factor of perceived usefulness. Surprisingly, time spent on practice exam questions was found to be negatively related to PHR certification exam scores. Finally, instructional feedback indirectly affected outcomes through its positive relationship to self-set goals. The results of the research should help training professionals and examinees in structuring PHR exam training and preparation activities. They also suggest avenues for improving outcomes in other similar types of training.
Date: May 2012
Creator: Bonner, David M.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Knowledge Discovery of Nanotube Mechanical Properties With an Informatics-Molecular Dynamics Approach

Description: Carbon nanotubes (CNT) have unparalleled mechanical properties, spanning several orders of magnitude over both length and time scales. Computational and experimental results vary greatly, partly due to the multitude of variables. Coupling physics-based molecular dynamics (MD) with informatics methodologies is proposed to navigate the large problem space. The adaptive intermolecular reactive empirical bond order (AIREBO) is used to model short range, long range and torsional interactions. A powerful approach that has not been used to study CNT mechanical properties is the derivation of descriptors and quantitative structure property relationships (QSPRs). For the study of defected single-walled CNTs (SWCNT), two descriptors were identified as critical: the density of non-sp2 hybridized carbons and the density of methyl groups functionalizing the surface. It is believed that both of these descriptors can be experimentally measured, paving the way for closed-loop computational-experimental development. Informatics can facilitate discovery of hidden knowledge. Further evaluation of the critical descriptors selected for Poisson’s ratio lead to the discovery that Poisson’s ratio has strain-varying nonlinear elastic behavior. CNT effectiveness in composites is based both on intrinsic mechanical properties and interfacial load transfer. In double-walled CNTs, inter-wall bonds are surface defects that decrease the intrinsic properties but also improve load transfer. QSPRs can be used to model these inverse effects and pinpoint the optimal amount of inter-wall bonds.
Date: May 2012
Creator: Borders, Tammie L.
Partner: UNT Libraries

After the Planes

Description: The dissertation consists of a critical preface and a novel. The preface analyzes what it terms “polyvocal” novels, or novels employing multiple points of view, as well as “layered storytelling,” or layers of textuality within novels, such as stories within stories. Specifically, the first part of the preface discusses polyvocality in twenty-first century American novels, while the second part explores layered storytelling in novels responding to World War II or the terrorist attacks of 9/11. The preface analyzes the advantages and difficulties connected to these techniques, as well as their aptitude for reflecting the fractured, disconnected, and subjective nature of the narratives we construct to interpret traumatic experiences. It also acknowledges the necessity—despite its inherent limitations—of using language to engage with this fragmentation and cope with its challenges. The preface uses numerous novels as examples and case studies, and it also explores these concepts and techniques in relation to the process of writing the novel After the Planes. After the Planes depicts multiple generations of a family who utilize storytelling as a means to work through grief, hurt, misunderstanding, and loss—whether from interpersonal conflicts or from war. Against her father’s wishes, a young woman moves in with her nearly-unknown grandfather, struggling to understand the rifts in her family and how they have shaped her own identity. She reads a book sent to her by her father, which turns out to be his story of growing up in the years following World War II. The book was intercepted and emended by her grandfather, who inserts his own commentary throughout, complicating her father’s hopes of reconciliation. The novel moves between two main narratives, one set primarily in 1951 and the other in the days and weeks immediately prior to September 11, 2001.
Date: May 2012
Creator: Boswell, Timothy
Partner: UNT Libraries

Tactile Media: Factors Affecting the Adoption of Touchscreen Smartphones Among Consumers with Vision Loss

Description: Touchscreen technology is on the rise as the new standard in smartphone design. But, the usability of touchscreen is hindered for consumers that lack the physical ability to navigate such devices. Two focus groups were conducted in order to identify specific uses and gratifications that people with visual impairments had when using mobile phones. Additional questions were presented to the participants to determine if touchscreen technology limited access to communication and entertainment. The responses revealed an upward trend in touchscreen smartphone adoption among the participants. These users chose to adopt touchscreen smartphones that had built-in and downloadable assistive features which contributed to user-friendly designs.
Date: May 2012
Creator: Bradley, Sapora L.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Early College High School: Hispanic Students’ Perceptions and Experiences From a Texas Campus

Description: Early college high school (ECHS) is a dual enrollment program that allows high school students to earn college credits while in high school. ECHS was developed with the intention of attracting students to pursue a 4-year college degree, especially students who might not attend college without intervention. The program targets students from low-income families, students who have low academic achievement, and students from minority groups including Hispanics, African Americans, and Native Americans. The purpose of this study was to explore the perceptions and opinions of Hispanic students about their experiences in an ECHS, and to better understand how their ECHS experiences affected motivation to engage in academics. The expectancy theory and college-going culture provided the theoretical framework for this case study. Semi-structured interviews captured the experiences of the participants. The study focused on 10 Hispanic students, 5 seniors and 5 juniors, enrolled at an ECHS located on a community college campus in Texas. The study found that students with higher motivation to work at high school and college courses had several reasons for choosing to attend ECHS. The reasons included a chance to earn a high school diploma and associate’s degree simultaneously, free college tuition, and an accelerated program to get through college. The students also identified rewarding outcomes for completing college. Those outcomes included satisfying career, personal satisfaction, ability to provide for their family and making their family proud as the first high school graduate and college attendee. One student had a lower motivation to work at high school and college work. He chose to attend ECHS to seek more freedom than a traditional high school. He was not certain about graduating from high school and doubtful about college graduation. This study contributes to the ECHS literature by providing details on students’ experiences at an ECHS. Using the qualitative ...
Date: May 2012
Creator: Brenner, Rose K.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Ecology and Recolonization of Benthic Macroinvertebrates in a Groundwater-dependent Stream in North Central Texas During a Supra-seasonal Drought

Description: Extreme climatic events such as droughts are known to eliminate aquatic biota and alter community structure and function. Perennial headwater springs provide important drought refugia to benthic macroinvertebrates and an important source of colonists via drift or aerial adults to intermittent streams post-drought. During a supra-seasonal drought in North-central Texas summer and fall 2006, benthic macroinvertebrates from persistent groundwater-dependent macrohabitats of varying hydrological connectivity and riparian shading were studied: perennial riffles, connected pools, shaded disconnected pools, and full sun disconnected pools. Riffles were a distinct habitat with significantly higher taxa richness, proportion of lotic taxa, diversity and evenness than other macrohabitats. Macrohabitats were found to be important refugia for 106 benthic macroinvertebrates and 4 microcrustacean taxa. Throughout the extreme drought, perennially flowing habitats were refugia to 19 taxa (17.9% total taxa) not collected in disconnected pools. Shaded disconnected pools contained lotic taxa not previously known to be able to complete their lifecycles in lentic habitats, emphasizing the importance of groundwater effluent and shading. With the resumption of flow at a downstream intermittent site of Ash Creek in mid-October 2006, an annual recolonization study was conducted comparing the perennial headwaters’ benthic macroinvertebrate taxa richness, densities and community ecology with the downstream intermittent site. The headwaters supported higher mean taxa richness than the intermittent site over the duration of the study (ANOVA P < 0.001). However, the unexpected result of overall decreasing taxa richness at the perennial headwater site from August 2006 to April 2008 appears to reflect lag effects of the supra-seasonal drought combined with effects of multiple spates of 2007, which are factors confounding the point of recovery for taxa richness. Recovery of taxa richness at the intermittent site took 9 months compared to 1 to 2 months reported in other arid and semi-arid streams in the United States recovering ...
Date: May 2012
Creator: Burk, Rosemary A.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Newspaper Ownership Structure and the Quality of Local Political News Coverage

Description: This research sought to ascertain how newspaper ownership structures influence the quality of local political news coverage. More specifically, do independently owned newspapers tend to produce larger quantities of quality local political reporting than do corporately owned and publicly traded newspapers? In the thesis, I develop an understanding of "quality" news coverage as being coverage that is thematic, or providing interpretive analysis and supplying contextual information. Additionally, I tackle the question of quality news coverage from three angles: whether or not independently owned newspapers provide more quality local political news stories per edition than corporately owned papers; whether or not the percentage of quality local political news stories of total political news stories within an edition is higher for independently owned or corporately owned newspapers; and whether or not the percentage of total political news stories of total news stories is higher for independently owned or corporately owned newspapers.
Date: May 2012
Creator: Clark, Karla Christine Marie
Partner: UNT Libraries

Ota-quadrotor: An Object-tracking Autonomous Quadrotor for Real-time Detection and Recognition

Description: The field of robotics and mechatronics is advancing at an ever-increasing rate and we are starting to see robots making the transition from the factories to the workplace and homes as cost is reduced and they become more useful. In recent years quadrotors have become a popular unmanned air vehicle (UAV) platform. These UAVs or micro air vehicles (MAV) are being used for many new and exciting applications such as aerial monitoring of wildlife, disaster sites, riots and protests. They are also being used in the film industry, as they are significantly cheaper means of getting aerial footage. While quadrotors are not extremely expensive a good system can cost in the range of $3000 - $8000 and thus too costly as a research platform for many. There are a number of cheaper open source platforms. The ArduCopter is under constant development, has the largest community and is inexpensive making it an ideal platform to work with. The goal of this thesis was to implement video processing on a ground control station allowing for the ArduCopter to track moving objects. This was achieved by using the OpenCV video-processing library to implement object tracking and the MAVLink communication protocol, available on the ArduCopter platform, for communication.
Date: May 2012
Creator: Coelho, Gavin
Partner: UNT Libraries

Bridging the Gap Between Access and Success: a Study of the Impact of an Access and Success Program on Academic Outcomes of Low-income College Freshmen

Description: In response to the increasing cost of college, colleges and universities are leveraging financial aid and academic support services to implement access and success programs intended to help financially disadvantaged students afford and persist through a baccalaureate degree program. This research is a study of the efficacy of one such program at a large research university in the southwestern region of the United States. The study sample included low-income program participants in four cohorts of freshmen enrolling for the first time in college from fall 2007 (Cohort 1) to fall 2010 (Cohort 4) and a comparison group of almost 400 low-income freshmen who enrolled for the first time in college in fall 2006 (the year prior to program implementation) for a sample total of over 2150 students. Approximately 64% were female, 36 % were males, over 60% were African American and Hispanic, and over 75% were first generation college students. Logistic regression was used to measure probability and odds of their academic success and retention in the first year of college utilizing gender, ethnicity, parental degree attainment, and program participation as the independent variables. The logistic regression models illustrated that participation in the program netted a consistently positive and significant impact on academic success across all cohorts, increasing the odds ratio for academic success no less than three times in favor of program participants vis-à-vis the comparison group. The statistical models illustrated that the program netted a slight positive impact on the odds of retention, particularly for African American students. Therefore, the principle implication that might be drawn from this study is that by strategically leveraging financial aid and academic support services, access and success programs can facilitate higher rates of academic success and retention for financially disadvantaged college students.
Date: May 2012
Creator: Collins, Sarah R.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Perceived Effects of a Mid-length Study Abroad Program

Description: The focus of the study was the University of Dallas’ Rome Program, a mid-length study abroad program on the university’s campus in Rome, Italy. The program is designed to provide participants with the opportunity to encounter firsthand Western tradition by integrating the core curriculum through classroom teachings and class excursions, thus solidifying the foundation of the participants’ undergraduate education. Beyond this purpose, the Rome Program does not operate from established goals and objectives for student experience. I consulted relevant research literature to construct a schema of domains of development appropriate to this qualitative study. These domains were intellectual development, global perspective, career development, and spiritual development. I interviewed 20 University of Dallas seniors who participated in the mid-length study abroad program between fall 2009 and spring 2011, using an extended, semi-structured interview protocol. The participants included 11 females and 9 males; 19 White and 1 Hispanic. The findings were supported by subsequent review by 4 of the interviewed students. I found generally strong but inconsistent support for student development in each of the domains. A number of sub-themes are reported. Through the interviews, an additional theme of personal development emerged and is reported. Although the findings generally support the conclusion that the Rome Program is successful, good education practice leads to a recommendation of more explicit setting of goals by higher education program planners and administrators. Such goal setting provides rationale for program construction, provides students with their own goal framework, and establishes a tangible framework for ongoing program evaluation.
Date: May 2012
Creator: Corbin, Jill K.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Filial Therapy and the Family: Examining the Impact of Child Parent Relationship Therapy (Cprt) on Family Functioning

Description: Research has indicated that filial therapy, an approach in which parents conduct play sessions with their young children, has strong effects on the participating parents and children. As a result, some have speculated that filial therapy improves the family system; however, minimal research exists to support this claim. Using a single-case, time-series design, I examined the impact of child parent relationship therapy (CPRT), a filial therapy approach, on the functioning of 8 diverse families (two-parent, biological children = 4; two-parent, adopted children = 3; single-parent, biological children = 1). 15 parents and 17 children (male = 15, female = 17) participated in the study. All but 1 parent was Caucasian. The children were more ethnically diverse (Caucasian = 5, Hispanic/Caucasian = 5, Hispanic = 3, Asian = 2). Parents’ ages ranged from 29 to 49 and children’s from 2 to 13. Results from simulation modeling analyses (SMA) indicated that 6 of 7 families experienced a statistically significant improvement in their targeted areas of family functioning, and the average effect size was moderate. Results from self-reported measures indicated that 7 families experienced notable improvements in family satisfaction, 4 in cohesion, 3 in communication, and 1 in flexibility. Data from an observational measure rated by independent assessors also indicated improvements pre- to post-intervention: 5 families in flexibility, 4 families in cohesion, and 4 families in communication. All families reported improved functioning in post-intervention interviews. The results support that the benefits of filial therapy may indeed extend to the family system.
Date: May 2012
Creator: Cornett, Nicholas A.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Factors Associated with Behavioral Intention to Disclose Personal Information on Geosocial Networking Applications

Description: Information privacy is a major concern for consumers adopting emerging technologies dependent on location-based services. This study sought to determine whether a relationship exists among factors of personalization, locatability, perceived playfulness, privacy concern and behavioral intention to disclose personal information for individuals using location-based, geosocial networking applications. Questionnaire responses from undergraduate students at a 4-year university provide insight into these relationships. Multiple regression results indicated that there was a statistically significant relationship between the four significant predictor variables and the dependent variable. Analysis of beta weights, structure coefficients, and commonality analysis shed light on the variance attributable to the predictor variables of the study. Findings provide understanding of the specific factors examined in the study and have implications for consumers, businesses, application designers, and policymakers. The results from this study contribute to an understanding of technology acceptance theory and offer insight into competing beliefs that may affect an individual’s behavioral intention to disclose personal information. Knowledge gained form the study may be useful for overcoming challenges related to consumer adoption of location-based services that require disclosure of personal information.
Date: May 2012
Creator: Cox, Trissa
Partner: UNT Libraries

Proposed Therapeutic Art to Diminish Agitation in Elder Care

Description: This research study examines the decreased agitation level utilizing nonpharmacological therapeutic interventions in dementia patients, age 65 and older. The study examined the following question: Will a therapeutic art program diminish agitated behaviors in persons diagnosed with dementia, aged 65 and older? In this quasi-experimental research design, the sample consisted of 19 participants in 3 groups, selected using these criteria: must be receiving services from a long term care facility, be diagnosed with dementia, display agitated behaviors, and be age 65 and older. This research measures the reduction of agitated behaviors in demented patients with the use of a therapeutic art program. The therapeutic art group pretest, midtest and posttest means were separated into Factor 1: aggressive behavior, Factor 2: physically nonaggressive behaviors, and Factor 3: verbally aggressive behavior. A multivariate analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) was conducted on the data for Factor 1, Factor 2, and Factor 3. The ANCOVA was not statistically significant for Factor 1. The ANCOVA indicated statistically significant findings when using a one tailed test for Factor 2 and Factor 3. The ANCOVA indicated statistically significant findings using a two tailed test for overall agitation. These findings inform professionals about the efficacy of therapeutic art programs on patients with levels of agitation and dementia. A therapeutic art program may contribute to a better quality of life for persons with dementia. Recommendations are included for use with dementia patients, therapeutic programs and long term care.
Date: May 2012
Creator: Curington, Bonnie Dearen
Partner: UNT Libraries

Effect of Resistance Training on Cytokines in Hiv+ Men with Chemical Dependence

Description: Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and substance abuse (drug and/or alcohol) independently impair the immune system; importantly, the combination of HIV infection and substance abuse might produce more than an additive effect on this system. Tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-?) and Interferon gamma (IFN?) are pro-inflammatory cytokines involved in differentiation of Th0 cells into Th1 cells. Interleukin 4 (IL-4) and Interleukin 10 (IL-10) are anti-inflammatory cytokine involved in differentiation of Th0 cells to Th2 cells. Unbalanced Th1 and Th2 cells can lead to immune suppression. Thus, changes in these cytokines could have important implications for people infected with HIV (HIV+). Resistance training can counteract muscle wasting, improve strength, and improve muscle mass. The purpose of this study was to examine the effect of resistance training on resting concentrations of circulating TNF-?, IFN-?, IL-4, and IL-10. Sixteen men (42 ± 11 years, 180.4 ± 9.1 cm, 89.2 ± 20.7 kg) infected with HIV and enrolled in an intensive 60-day in-patient substance addiction/abuse treatment program were recruited shortly after admission to the treatment facility. Participants were assigned to one of two groups using randomization: supervised resistance exercise 3 times per week using a progressive and non-linear periodized program (Exercise) or no exercise training (Non-Exercise) for six weeks. Before (Pre) and after (Post) the 6-week period, resting and fasted blood samples were obtained and analyzed for serum TNF-?, IFN-?, IL-4, and IL-10 concentrations using a high-sensitivity ELISA. TNF-? did not change following the 6-week period for Exercise (Pre: 4.8 ± 2.7 pg·ml-1; Post: 4.6 ± 2.4 pg·ml-1) or Non-Exercise (Pre: 3.0 ± 1.3 pg·ml-1; Post: 2.7 ± 0.8 pg·ml-1). IFN-?, IL-4, and IL-10 concentrations were below detectable limits. No adverse effects of the intervention were reported. A six-week resistance training program does not elicit changes in circulating TNF-? concentrations in men infected with HIV and ...
Date: May 2012
Creator: Curtis, John Harper
Partner: UNT Libraries

Young Journalists Today: Journalism Students’ Perceptions of the Ever-evolving Industry

Description: Today’s journalism students are learning in a time in which new technology innovations, including online news sites, blogs, and social media, have become a prominent part of the journalism industry. Whether it’s newspapers, public relations, or broadcast, technology has become a part of every area of journalism. While several studies have focused on how journalism classes should be taught in lieu of this change, how students are learning and how they feel about this changing industry has yet to be shared. This research uses both a survey of 203 current, undergraduate pre-journalism students at a large, Southwestern university, as well as focus group interviews with several subgroups of 11 of those students. The results show, not surprisingly, that journalism students are heavy users of technology and social media. They also show that a majority of journalism students prefers consuming media online. However, although students use technology and social media frequently, and also consume media online, there is evidence that suggests that they would rather learn face-to-face with an instructor than take online classes. In addition, they feel positive about their future in the changing industry.
Date: May 2012
Creator: Daniels, Stephanie
Partner: UNT Libraries

Absorptive Capacity: An Empirical Examination of the Phenomenon and Relationships with Firm Capabilities

Description: The field of strategic management addresses challenges that firms encounter in an attempt to remain competitive. The ability to explain variation in firm success through examination of knowledge flows has become a prominent focus of research in the strategic management literature. Specifically, researchers have sought to further examine how firms convert knowledge, a phenomenon conceptualized as absorptive capacity. Absorptive capacity is the firm’s ability to acquire, assimilate, transform, and exploit knowledge. Few studies have captured the richness and multi-dimensionality of absorptive capacity, and it remains to be understood how the dimensions of the phenomenon convert knowledge. Furthermore, how absorptive capacity influences the firm remains to be understood. To address these research gaps, this dissertation seeks to (1) determine how absorptive capacity converts knowledge, and (2) determine how absorptive capacity influences firm capabilities. The research questions are investigated using structural modeling techniques to analyze data collected from software-industry firms. The findings offer contributions to the absorptive capacity and capability literatures. For example, absorptive capacity is hypothesized to consist of complex relationships among its internal dimensions. However, findings of this study suggest the relationships among the dimensions are linear in nature. This finding is in line with the theoretical foundations of and early literature on absorptive capacity but contrary to recent conceptualizations, which suggests relationships among the dimensions are more closely related to the theoretical origins of absorptive capacity. Additionally, to examine how absorptive capacity influences the firm, a capability-based perspective is used to hypothesize the influence of absorptive capacity on firm capabilities. Findings suggest absorptive capacity positively influences each dimension of firm capabilities (e.g., operational, customer, and innovation capabilities); thus, absorptive capacity influences the firm by altering firm capabilities. Given the richness of the findings, numerous fields are likely to benefit from this investigation. Through an examination of absorptive capacity and ...
Date: May 2012
Creator: Daspit, Josh
Partner: UNT Libraries