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British-Style Brass Bands in U.S. Colleges and Universities

Description: Since the 1980s, British-style brass bands - community ensembles modeled after the all-brass and percussion bands of Great Britain - have enjoyed a modest regeneration in the United States. During this same period, as many as 23 colleges and universities in the U.S. have founded their own curricular or extra-curricular brass band. The purpose of this research study was: to discover which schools sponsor a brass band currently; to discover which schools formerly sponsored a brass band but have since discontinued it; to describe the operational practices of collegiate brass bands in the U.S.; and to determine what collegiate brass band conductors perceive to be the challenges and benefits of brass band in the curriculum. Data for the study were collected between February, 2015 and February, 2016 using four custom survey instruments distributed to conductors of college and university brass bands. The results showed that 11 American collegiate institutions were sponsoring a brass band during the period of data collection. Additional findings included descriptions of the operations of collegiate brass bands, such as availability of credit, rehearsal time, and instrumentation. Results also included the conductors' reported perceptions that both challenges and benefits are inherent in student brass band participation, and that brass band is a positive experience for students. An additional 3 community-based brass bands, not sponsored by but located near a college or university, were found to include collegiate students among their player personnel. A total of 9 schools formerly sponsoring brass bands were found to have discontinued their program. A repertoire analysis of 733 titles of compositions performed by both active and formerly active brass bands revealed that bands performed original works for brass band nearly as often as transcribed or arranged works.
Date: December 2016
Creator: Taylor, Mark Amdahl

University Coursework and Field Experiences: Pre-Service Teachers' Perceptions and Experiences with Key Components of Response to Intervention

Description: Pre-service teachers are entering the field as novice practitioners with concerns regarding their ability to confidently and effectively implement key components of response to intervention (RTI). This concurrent mixed-methods study explores pre-service teachers' (N =169) perceptions and experiences with key components of RTI (e.g., screening, multi-tiered evidence-based intervention, progress monitoring, and data-based decision making). A questionnaire in conjunction with open-response items and four focus groups provided data to identify aspects of university coursework and field experiences that contribute to pre-service teachers' perceived ability to confidently implement key components of RTI. The results of this investigation show between group differences in perception and experiences related to RTI. Special education certification seekers reported higher perceived confidence, receiving more coursework, and having more field experiences with RTI than elementary, middle grade, and secondary certification seekers. Among all groups, secondary certification seekers reported the lowest confidence, least amount of coursework, and fewest field experiences with RTI. Pre-service teachers in this study valued coursework and knowledgeable instructors who emphasized the components of RTI and participating in hands-on class activities. Participants noted benefits from or a desire for field experiences with struggling learners and having mentors with knowledge and expertise in RTI. Study findings suggest providing pre-service teachers with comprehensive preparation in RTI during coursework in combination with field experiences working with struggling learners may increase perceived confidence and is valued.
Date: December 2016
Creator: Hovey, Katrina A

Special Education Teachers Self-Reported Use of Evidence-Based Practices for Students with Autism in Texas Public Schools

Description: Currently there is extensive literature on evidence-based practices (EBP) for students with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). However, there is limited research on whether or not these practices are implemented in the classroom by teachers serving students with ASD. Special education teachers are responsible for the learning outcomes of students across a range of ages and disabilities. This study investigated teachers' self-reported use of EBP and what factors influence implementation. Participants included 129 special education teachers in Texas public schools. Data utilizing descriptive statistics and logistic regression was conducted to determine what factors (i.e., education, employment, teaching experience and training methods) predicted implementation of a particular practice. Although 67% of teachers reported using EBPs, teachers' employment and training experiences did not predict the implementation of a particular practice. Information from this study can be used to enhance professional development for teachers serving students with ASD.
Date: December 2016
Creator: Cowan, Angela K.

The Impact on Achievement from Student and Parent Attitudes towards Using Smartphones in School

Description: The purpose of this research was to determine what type of correlations existed between student and parent attitudes towards using smartphones in school and the resulting impact on achievement, specifically for low-achieving students. Participants in the study were third-grade students and their parents from a primary school in Singapore. The study employed a quantitative analysis to understand the correlations among the different participant groups. The instruments used were Likert-based surveys, along with scores from mid-year and end-of-year achievement exams in English and science. The three most relevant major findings showed that (a) low-achieving students show a positive attitude toward completing science activities, which correlates with an increase in science achievement; (b) the parents of low-achieving students appear to provide their children with autonomy in using their smartphones, which correlates with an increase in science achievement; and (c) having a smartphone and using the smartphone to complete school work is important to low-achieving students and their parents.
Date: December 2016
Creator: Gordesky, Joshua

Human-Animal Relational Theory: A Constructivist-Grounded Theory Investigation

Description: Constructs of human-animal relational theory (HART) were investigated to determine how those constructs manifested in animal-assisted therapy in counseling (AAT-C) from the perspectives of 6 participants (2 counselors, females, ages 28 and 32, both non-Hispanic and White; 2 clients, male and female, ages 55 and 23, respectively, both non-Hispanic and White; and, 2 therapy animals, canines, Labrador retriever and spaniel mix, ages 4 and 5, respectively). Using constructivist-grounded theory, a research team analyzed qualitative data from observations, interviews, and field notes. From the iterative process of multiphasic coding and constant comparison, these findings emerged: (a) consistency between Chandler's (in press) constructs and participants' experiences of AAT-C, (b) more meaningful therapeutic impacts for clients from client-initiated human-animal relational processes (HARPs) than counselor-initiated HARPs, (c) development of rich definitions and descriptions of Chandler's constructs, and (d) descriptions of interactive experiences of AAT-C and client resistance in the context of HART. Clinicians and educators in the field of AAT can apply the processes, practices, and principles from this study in their work to enhance positive therapeutic impacts for clients. As Chandler's constructs were supported in this study, AAT authors and researchers can solve a glaring problem of inconsistent terminology in the AAT literature by using those constructs in future studies and publications as operationalized nomenclature for standardized AAT interventions.
Date: December 2016
Creator: Otting, Tiffany L

Infusing Automatic Question Generation with Natural Language Understanding

Description: Automatically generating questions from text for educational purposes is an active research area in natural language processing. The automatic question generation system accompanying this dissertation is MARGE, which is a recursive acronym for: MARGE automatically reads generates and evaluates. MARGE generates questions from both individual sentences and the passage as a whole, and is the first question generation system to successfully generate meaningful questions from textual units larger than a sentence. Prior work in automatic question generation from text treats a sentence as a string of constituents to be rearranged into as many questions as allowed by English grammar rules. Consequently, such systems overgenerate and create mainly trivial questions. Further, none of these systems to date has been able to automatically determine which questions are meaningful and which are trivial. This is because the research focus has been placed on NLG at the expense of NLU. In contrast, the work presented here infuses the questions generation process with natural language understanding. From the input text, MARGE creates a meaning analysis representation for each sentence in a passage via the DeconStructure algorithm presented in this work. Questions are generated from sentence meaning analysis representations using templates. The generated questions are automatically evaluated for question quality and importance via a ranking algorithm.
Date: December 2016
Creator: Mazidi, Karen

Innovation Output and the Cost of Funds

Description: Do firms with higher levels of innovation output, measured by patent counts and citations, enjoy lower costs of funds? The process to develop and apply for patents involves valuable resources. Thus, applying for a patent is a credible signal that the underlying invention is valuable. This value is validated to some degree when the patent is granted. In addition, patents contain detailed information about the firm's inventions and provide collateral value as they can be sold and licensed. The number of citations a firm receives act as a proxy for high-quality inventions, active networking, and pioneering. These attributes are expected to attract investors and reduce the cost of funds. Univariate and cross-sectional regression analyses of a sample consisting of 404,595 firm-years, involving firms from twenty-eight countries spanning from 1976 to 2012, demonstrate a significant negative association between innovation output and the cost of funds. The evidence suggests that the marginal benefit of innovation diminishes as innovation output increases. The results are robust to different measures of the cost of equity and the cost of debt. The negative association between the cost of equity and innovation output is economically larger for younger and smaller firms. The long-term level of innovation seems to be more important to shareholders than short-term changes of innovation. In addition, shareholders demonstrate an ability to discern between low and high-quality innovations, as they require lower rates of returns when initial patents exhibit a high quality. Shareholders place more value on innovation output when firms operate in countries with legal systems that are more effective in controlling self-dealing practices, in countries that have higher economic freedom, and in countries that have more developed financial markets. The correlation between the cost of debt and innovation output is predominantly derived by larger, more mature, and more leveraged firms. Innovation output ...
Date: December 2016
Creator: Almomen, Adel Abdulkareem

The Use of the Trumpet in Early Seventeenth Century Spanish Music Dramas: A Comparative Analysis of Selected Works by Sebastian Duron, Joaquin Martinez de la Roca, and Alessandro Scarlatti

Description: The purpose of this project is to conduct and analysis of the role and symbolism of the trumpet in two early eighteenth century Spanish music dramas: La Guerra de los Gigantes by Sebastian Duron and Los Desagravios de Troya by Joaquin Martinez de la Roca.
Date: December 2016
Creator: Duell, Trevor T

Johannes Brahms's Ein deutsches Requiem: A Comparison of the Reduced Orchestration Techniques in Joachim Linckelmann's Chamber Ensemble Version to Brahms's Four-Hand Piano Version

Description: Recognizing the challenges small groups have to program a major work, in 2010, Joachim Linckelmann created a chamber ensemble arrangement of Johannes Brahms's "Ein deutsches Requiem." In 1869, J.M. Reiter-Biedermann published Brahms's four-hand piano arrangement of "Ein deutsches Requiem." Brahms's arrangement serves as an excellent comparison to the chamber ensemble version by Linckelmann, since it can be assumed that Brahms chose to highlight and focus on the parts he deemed the most important. This study was a comparative analysis of the two arrangements and was completed in three stages. The first stage documented every significant change in Joachim Linckelmann's recent chamber arrangement. The second stage classified each change as either a reduction, reorganization, or elimination. The final stage of the analysis was to compare the choices made by Linckelmann to those made by Brahms. The results show that Linckelmann's choices for reduction, reorganization, and elimination closely align with those of Brahms. The only differences between the arrangements can be attributed to Linckelmann's focus on retaining the original orchestral timbre and Brahms's focus on providing the original vocal parts.
Date: December 2016
Creator: Hawley, Michael Aaron

Costly Ignorance: The Denial of Relevance by Job Seekers: A Case Study in Saudi Arabia

Description: Job centers aid businesses seeking qualified employees and assist job seekers to select and contact employment and training services. Job seekers are also offered the opportunity to assess their skills, abilities, qualifications, and readiness. Furthermore, job centers ensure that job seekers are complying with requirements that they must meet to benefit from job assistance programs such as unemployment insurance. Yet, claimants often procrastinate and/or suspend their job search efforts even though such actions can make them lose their free time and entitlements, and more importantly they may lose the opportunity to take advantage of free information, services, training, and financial assistance for getting a job to which they have already made a claim. The current work looks to Chatman's "small worlds" work, Johnson's comprehensive model of information seeking, and Wilson's "costly ignorance" construct for contributions to understanding such behavior. Identification of a particular trait or set of traits of job seekers during periods of unemployment will inform a new Job Seeking Activities Model (JSAM). This study purposely examines job seeker information behavior and the factors which influence job seekers' behavior, in particular, family tangible support as a social norm effect. A mixed method, using questionnaires for job hunting completers and non-completers and interviews for experts, was employed for data collection. Quantitative data analysis was conducted to provide the Cronbach α coefficient, Pearson's product moment correlation, an independent-sample t-test, effect size, and binary Logit regression. The qualitative data generated from the interview transcript for each section of the themes and subthemes were color coded. Finally, simultaneous triangulation was carried out to confirm or contradict the results from each method. The findings show that social norms, particularly uncontrolled social support provided by their families, are more likely to make job seekers ignore the relevant information about jobs available to them in favor ...
Date: December 2016
Creator: Alahmad, Badr Suleman

Using Situated Learning, Community of Practice, and Guided Online Discourse in Healthcare Education for Learning Effective Interprofessional Communication

Description: The problem exists that there are no education initiatives focused on teaching and taking into practice the skills of effective interprofessional discourse in this online, asynchronous, professional environment. The purpose of this study was to examine whether it is possible for students in the health professions to learn to practice effective interprofesssional online discourse in an electronic health record. This was a mixed methods study that included both quantitative ad qualitative inquiry underpinned by post positivism and used a method triangulation research design model. Both quantitative and qualitative data were collected and analyzed from an educational intervention and simulated electronic health record exercise. The students' perceptions of their practice in an electronic health record did not necessarily match their knowledge and skills in this group of students. Emergent themes from the study pointed in the possible direction of perceived value of the exercise, prior experience in an electronic health record, and logistical barriers to the activity. Perceived time constraints was a particularly strong concern of the students. The emergent themes might be valuable considerations for other interprofessional programs looking to implement similar activities concerning the electronic health record.
Date: December 2016
Creator: Krumwiede, Kimberly A.H.

Academic Progress Scores to Predict Performance on a State Assessment

Description: This quantitative study examined seventh-grade reading scores to determine the extent to which certain demographic variables (race/ethnicity, gender, socioeconomic status) explain and MAP reading scores predict reading scores on the State of Texas Assessment of Academic Readiness (STAAR) in a selected northeast Texas public school. Standardized assessments only compare the relative performance of an individual student to other groups of students using scaled scores, which can vary from year to year and from state to state. With the advent of computer adaptive testing, this study provides information on the predictive validity of benchmark assessments. Specifically, this study looked for predictive evidence that indicates how accurately test data can predict criterion scores. Findings revealed, through a multiple regression analysis, that the fall MAP Rasch Unit (RIT) scores predicted the STAAR scale scores. Using SPSS version 22, the data were entered and analyzed in a multiple regression model to determine the presence of a statistical trend or lack thereof. Demographic data and MAP scores were entered into the regression model to examine the predictive validity of the MAP assessment in determining student performance on the STAAR seventh-grade state-mandated reading assessment. The statistical analysis revealed that MAP RIT scores explain a significant variance related to seventh-grade STAAR reading scale scores. There is a vital need for tools that improve a student's academic development and MAP assessments have been found to predict performance on state-mandated assessments.
Date: December 2016
Creator: Curry, David Mitchell

Cardiovascular Fetal Programming in Quail (Colinus virginianus), An Avian Comparative Model

Description: The consequences of early embryonic insults and how they affect subsequent life reflects the emerging concept of "fetal programming". The aim of this project is to study the effects of embryonic insults as they subsequently manifest themselves in adults, with emphasis on the heart and vasculature. My experiments establish that fetal programming operates on the bobwhite quail inducing similar changes as those observed in mammalians and other birds. The quail's fast development provides reliable data in a short period of time than other avian models (e.g. domestic chicken). Data on quail showed a correlation between egg mass and hatchling mass; where small eggs produce small hatchlings but a high mortality made it impractical as a stressor for this study. Hypoxia was used as a stressor during embryonic incubation, where it induced a low hatching weight in quail that was not observable in adult birds. Morphological measurements demonstrated an increased ventricular collagen content and reduced ventricular lumen in birds in adults incubated in hypoxia consistent with hypertension. The hematological analyzes showed few differences indicating organ remodeling instead of hematopoietic compensation. The assessment of vascular reactivity pointed out an impaired endothelium dependent relaxation commonly associated to hypertension in birds and mammals. Fetal programming could be a widespread response to an adverse prenatal environment in endotherms and the resulting data from this work contributes to our understanding of fetal programming in vertebrates and its long term consequences.
Date: December 2016
Creator: Flores Santin, Josele

District Leadership Supporting PLC Implementation in a Rapid Growth District

Description: A growing body of work has emerged regarding the responsibilities required of district leaders in establishing plans that initiate and create conditions for sustainability of continuous improvement achieved through a systemic reform structure such as professional learning communities. However, limited research exists in respect to sustaining cultures of continuous improvement in rapid growth districts. Rapid growth districts can be described as school systems, which construct and open multiple campuses annually. The underlying premise of this study considered how humans interact with one another within a rapidly changing professional organization. Change theory, professional capital, organizational learning theory, and system reform emerge as the conceptual framework in this study of district support of professional learning communities. Data collection for this qualitative descriptive case study included interviewing six K-12 principals, administering the PLCA-DS survey to 247 K-12 staff members, and document review. Recognition of the importance of the PLC framework, building capacity, development of collaborative culture, and issues resulting from constant change due to rapid growth were the four themes generated by the participants to support continuous improvement in a rapid growth district. The four themes combined with the components of the conceptual framework outline how district leaders in a rapidly changing environment cultivate a process leading to system-wide improvement.
Date: December 2016
Creator: Tinsley, Laurie Huffman

Building an Understanding of International Service Learning in Librarianship

Description: From the very beginning, library education has been a mixture of theory and practice. Dewey required apprenticeships to be part of the first library school at the University of Chicago as a method to indoctrinate new professional. Today, acculturation is incorporated into the professional education through a large variety of experiential learning techniques, including internships, practicum, field work, and service learning projects, all of which are designed to develop some level of professional skills within an information organization. But, what is done for understanding library culture? It is said that one cannot truly recognize the extent of one's own cultural assumptions, until they have experienced another. This study followed a group of LIS graduate students that took that next step – going to Russia. By employing a critical hermeneutic methodology, this study sought to understand what value students gain by from working on an assessment project in an international school library. Using a horizon analysis, the researcher established the worldview of participants prior to their departure, analyzed their experience through post-experience interviews, and constructed an understanding of value. Among other concepts, the researcher looked specifically to see whether "library cultural competency", understanding library culture in global context, was developed through working on a service learning project within an international school library. This dissertation provides feedback for the program leaders and ideas for future research.
Date: December 2016
Creator: Walczyk, Christine

Instructional Coaching in a Small District: A Mixed Methods Study of Teachers' Concerns

Description: This study utilized a convergent parallel mixed methods design to study teachers' concerns during implementation of instructional coaching for math in a rural PK-12 district in north Texas over a three-year time period. Five campuses were included in the study: one high school (grades 9-12), one middle school (grades 6-8), and three elementary campuses (pre-kindergarten through grade 5). In a school district of 3,400 students and 241 teachers, fifty-two math teachers were surveyed and interviewed for their perceptions and concerns during implementation of instructional math coaching in order to assist central office administration in knowing how to support teachers through the change process. Data included the Stages of Concern Questionnaire (SoCQ) at three points during the study period analyzed through nonparametric statistical analysis. No statistically significant differences were found to exist between campuses. However, a statistically significant difference was found when campuses were grouped by elementary and secondary campuses. Open-Ended Statements of Concern and focus group interview data by campus served as qualitative data to triangulate concerns and to measure situational evidence of rurality influence on teachers' concerns. Convergence of qualitative and quantitative findings indicate concerns clustered in unconcerned, informational, and personal stages. Evidence of rural contextual influences point to limited resources and dense staff relationships in rural schools. This data aids the district under study in supporting teachers through the process of change as an instructional coaching program for math is implemented systemically.
Date: December 2016
Creator: Mayfield, Melissa J

Drought: Construction of a Social Problem

Description: Drought is a complex subject that has varied definitions and perspectives. Although drought has historically been characterized as an environmental problem from both the meteorological and agricultural communities, it is not considered a sociological disaster despite its severe societal impacts. Utilizing the framework developed by Spector and Kitsuse (2011) and Stallings (1995), this research examines the process through which drought is defined as a social problem. An analysis of the data revealed drought was well covered in Africa, India, China, Australia, and New Zealand, yet very little coverage focused on the United States. There were less than 10 articles discussing drought and drought impacts in the United States. The workshops/meetings examined also were lacking in the attention to drought, although their overall theme was focused on hazards and resilience. Six sessions in over 16 years of meetings/workshops focused on the topic of drought, and one session was focused on the condition in Canada. The interviews uncovered five thematic areas demonstrating drought understanding and awareness: Use of outreach to get the message out; agricultures familiarity with drought; the role of drought in media; the variability of what drought is; and water conservation. Drought's claims-makers who are dedicated to providing outreach and education to impacted communities. Drought is often overlooked due to its slow onset and evolving development makes it difficult to determine when to engage in recovery efforts. Drought defined as a social problem also expands theoretical conversations regarding what events or issues should be included within the sociological disaster list of topics.
Date: December 2016
Creator: Parham, Antoinette D

Commissioning Music for Trombone and Percussion: A Collaboration Between Composer and Performer with an Accompanying Survey of Trombone and Percussion Repertoire

Description: The repertoire for trombone and percussion has grown in popularity since the later 1980s. There are currently more than 110 pieces written for the ensemble. This project follows the commissioning and collaboration of Dr. Blake Tyson, Professor of Percussion at the University of Central Arkansas and well known percussion composer, in the creation of a new piece for trombone and percussion. The project also created a survey of works for trombone and percussion duet that includes 32 works. The survey includes details such as specific percussion instrumentation range, tessitura, grade level, publisher, and a description of each piece.
Date: December 2016
Creator: Cook, Justin Hastings

STEM Professional Volunteers in K-12 Competition Programs: Educator Practices and Impact on Pedagogy

Description: This mixed methods dissertation study explored how secondary school educators in specific K-12 competition programs recruited and deployed STEM professional volunteers. The study explored which practices were viewed as most important, and how practices related to constructivist pedagogy, all from the viewpoint of educators. The non-positivist approach sought new knowledge without pursuing generalized results. Review of the literature uncovered extensive anecdotal information about current practices, and suggested that large investments are made in engaging volunteers. One National Science Foundation-sponsored study was identified, and its recommendations for a sustained research agenda were advanced. Three study phases were performed, one to explore practices and operationalize definitions, a second to rate practice's importance and their relation to pedagogy, and a third to seek explanations. Educators preferred recruiting local, meaning recruiting parents and former students, versus from industry or other employers. Most educators preferred volunteers with mentoring skills, and placing them in direct contact with students, versus deploying volunteers to help with behind-the-scenes tasks supporting the educator. Relationships were identified between the highest-rated practices and constructivism in programs. In STEM professional volunteers, educators see affordances, in the same way a classroom tool opens affordances. A model is proposed which shows educators considering practicality, pedagogy, knowledge and skills, and rapport when accessing the affordances opened by STEM professional volunteers. Benefits are maximized when programs align with strong industry clusters in the community.
Date: December 2016
Creator: Zintgraff, Alfred Clifton

The Museum is the Object: An Action Research Study in How Critical Theory Curriculum Influences Student Understanding of an Art Museum

Description: The purpose of this action research study was to determine how a critical theory curriculum implemented in a college-level art appreciation course impacted student understanding of an encyclopedic art museum. A critical theory-based curriculum unit was designed and implemented, and students were given assignments to assess their learning. The most significant assignment centered on a self-guided student visit to the art museum in which students made detailed observations of the museum spaces and responded to articles critiquing museum practices. These documents, together with class discussions and my personal observations, were analyzed and described in this research study. The data revealed that students had a high level of regard for and interest in art museums, were capable of understanding how history and context influences museum practices, detected multiple instances of bias in art museum galleries, and self-reported high levels of cognition and empowerment based on their experiences. The data suggested that, in college students, both art appreciation instructors and museum educators have an ideal audience in which to facilitate sustained, higher-level, critical theory-based museum learning experiences.
Date: December 2016
Creator: Elizondo, Kristina Kay

Adult Learning: Evaluation of Preferences for Technology and Learning Sources for Workplace Learning

Description: The purpose of this research was to provide an initial investigation of the preferences for both technology and learning sources that are available today in the modern workplace at a large financial institution with a national presence in the USA. In addition to the preferences of the participants, the research includes insights about the culture of the learning organization by using the Dimension of Learning Organization Questionnaire (DLOQ) and two preference surveys. The research methods used in this study are categorized as mixed methods and include both quantitative and qualitative methods. This study is nonpositivist and descriptive. It is based on a triangulation design method which is comprised of analysis from data obtained from the DLOQ and preference surveys, as well as semi-structured interviews with several survey participants. The results of the studies provide the foundational information for an extended quantitative analysis.
Date: December 2016
Creator: Kaiser, Robert Cresswell

Framework to Evaluate Entropy Based Data Fusion Methods in Supply Chain Management

Description: This dissertation explores data fusion methodology to deduce an overall inference from the data gathered from multiple heterogeneous sources. Typically, if there existed a data source in which the data were reliable and unbiased, then data fusion would not be necessary. Data fusion methodology combines data form multiple diverse sources so that the desired information - such as the population mean - is improved despite redundancies, inaccuracies, biases, and inflated variability in the data. Examples of data fusion include estimating average demand from similar sources, and integrating fatality counts from different media sources after a catastrophe. The approach in this study combines "inputs" from distinct sources so that the information is "fused." Another way of describing this process is "data integration." Important assumptions are 1. Several sources provide "inputs" for information used to estimate parameters of a probability distribution. 2. Since distributions for the data from the sources are heterogeneous, some sources are less reliable. 3. Distortions, bias, censorship, and systematic errors may be more prominent in data from certain sources. 4. The sample size of sources data, number of "inputs," may be very small. Examples of information from multiple sources are abundant: traffic information from sensors at intersections, multiple economic indicators from various sources, demand data for product using similar retail stores as sources, polling data from various sources, and disaster count of fatalities from different media sources after a catastrophic event. This dissertation seeks to address a gap in the operations literature by addressing three research questions regarding entropy base data fusion (EBDF) approaches to estimation. Three separate, but unifying, essays address the research questions for this dissertation. Essay 1 provides an overview of supporting literature for the research questions. A numerical analysis of airline maximum wait time data illustrates the underlying issues involved in EBDF methods. This ...
Date: December 2016
Creator: Tran, Huong Thi

Associations between Collaborative Learning and Personality/Cognitive Style among Online Community College Students

Description: This research study investigated associations between online community college students' personal characteristics and experiences in online courses (n = 123). Specifically, students' personalities and cognitive styles were examined alongside the perceived quality and outcomes of collaboration. Negative correlations were found between the conscientiousness personality style and both the quality of collaboration (p = .09) and the outcome of collaboration (p = .05). This finding indicates that conscientious students who, according to the literature tend to have higher academic achievement than other students, perceive negative experiences in online collaborative environments. Conversely, a positive correlation was discovered between the extraversion personality type and the perceived outcomes of collaboration (p = .01). Thus, students with a strongly extraverted personality tend to perceive that they benefits from collaborative learning. Approximately 11% of the variance in the collaborative experience was explained by the combined personal characteristics. The reported frequency of collaboration was positively correlated with both the quality (p < .01) and the outcomes of collaboration (p < .01). While not generalizable, these results suggest that not all students perceive benefits from online collaborative learning. It may be worthwhile to teach students traits associated with the extraversion type like flexibility which is important for collaborative learning. Also, teaching students to adopt traits associated with conscientiousness that improve academic achievement like self-regulation may help improve perceptions of collaborative experiences.
Date: December 2016
Creator: Sheffield, Anneliese

Assessing the Older Diabetic Population in the US: A Descriptive Look at This Population from 2001-2010 Focusing upon Education and Clinical Behaviors

Description: The focus of this research study was to gain needed information on the older adult population in the United States who have diabetes. The research method was quantitative retrospective study of American diabetes obtained from the National Health Interview Survey database from 2001 through 2010. The study results confirmed more than one-third of the U.S. diabetics are aged 65 and older. More than 75% of the older diabetic population report clinical limitations or comorbidities. Based on surrogate markers of education, it appears the older diabetic cohort did receive more preventative care visits than did the older nondiabetic population; however, the difference was not robust. I found a slight negative trend between age and emergency room visits in the older diabetic population; in addition, there was a negative association between age and smoking in this population. There continues to be a need for scientific research in this population. Greater numbers need education and more clinical trials specific to the older diabetic should be encouraged.
Date: December 2016
Creator: Parker, Patti Annette