UNT Libraries - 280 Matching Results

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Agent Extensions for Peer-to-Peer Networks.

Description: Peer-to-Peer (P2P) networks have seen tremendous growth in development and usage in recent times. This attention has brought many developments as well as new challenges to these networks. We will show that agent extensions to P2P networks offer solutions to many problems faced by P2P networks. In this research, an attempt is made to bring together JXTA P2P infrastructure and Jinni, a Prolog based agent engine to form an agent based P2P network. On top of the JXTA, we define simple Java API providing P2P services for agent programming constructs. Jinni is deployed on this JXTA network using an automated code update mechanism. Experiments are conducted on this Jinni/JXTA platform to implement a simple agent communication and data exchange protocol.
Date: December 2003
Creator: Valiveti, Kalyan

Analysis of a Cotton Gene Cluster for the Antifungal Protein Osmotin

Description: Three overlapping genomic clones covering 29.0 kilobases of cotton DNA were found to encompass a cluster of two presumptive osmotin genes (OSMI and OSMII) and two osmotin pseudogenes (OSMIII and OSMIV). A segment of 16,007 basepairs of genomic DNA was sequenced from the overlapping genomic clones (GenBank Accessions AY303690 and AF304007). The two cotton osmotin genes were found to have open reading frames of 729 basepairs without any introns, and would encode presumptive osmotin preproteins of 242 amino acids. The open reading frames of the genes are identical in sequence to two corresponding cDNA clones (GenBank Accessions AF192271 and AY301283). The two cDNA inserts are almost full-length, since one lacks codons for the four N-terminal amino acids, and the other cDNA insert lacks the coding region for the 34 N-terminal amino acids. The cotton osmotin preproteins can be identified as PR5 proteins from their similarities to the deduced amino acid sequences of other plant osmotin PR5 preproteins. The preproteins would have N-terminal signal sequences of 24 amino acids, and the mature 24 kilodalton isoforms would likely be targeted for extracellular secretion. Prospective promoter elements, including two ethylene response elements, implicated as being positive regulatory elements in the expression of a number of PR-proteins, occur in the 5'-flanking regions. The mature osmotin proteins accumulate in cotton plants treated with the inducers ethephon and hydrogen peroxide. Thus, the two cotton osmotin genes encode osmotin proteins. The coding regions of the two genes have been expressed and isolated as fusion polypeptides in a bacterial expression system. Binary constructs containing the open reading frames of the two osmotin genes under the control of the 35S CaMV promoter have been generated for eventual production of transgenic Arabidopsis and cotton plants for potential constitutive expression of the osmotin proteins for increased resistance against fungal pathogens.
Date: December 2003
Creator: Wilkinson, Jeffery Roland

An Analysis of Motivational Cues in Virtual Environments.

Description: Guiding navigation in virtual environments (VEs) is a challenging task. A key issue in the navigation of a virtual environment is to be able to strike a balance between the user's need to explore the environment freely and the designer's need to ensure that the user experiences all the important events in the VE. This thesis reports on a study aimed at comparing the effectiveness of various navigation cues that are used to motivate users towards a specific target location. The results of this study indicate some significant differences in how users responded to the various cues.
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Date: December 2003
Creator: Voruganti, Lavanya

Analysis of Special Education Compliance and Special Education Funding in Four Texas Open-Enrollment Charter Schools.

Description: The purpose of this study was to conduct an in-depth examination of special education services in open-enrollment charter schools in north Texas and to examine relationships between special education compliance and funding. Six questions guided the research: How have the charter schools designed special education services, and do these services meet individual needs of students with disabilities? Have federal education and disability laws affected charter schools' admissions, operations, or student performance ratings? What were the levels of special education funding and compliance with federal and state regulations? Is there a relationship between special education funding and special education compliance with rules and regulations? Studies at the national and state levels have frequently been conducted in the form of surveys, and provide only preliminary information about the status of special education in charter schools. There is a paucity of case specific information about the management and delivery of special education services in open-enrollment charter schools. A within-case study research design was used for this investigation utilizing qualitative methods of structured open-ended interviews, observations at the schools, and document analysis. Administrators at four open-enrollment charter schools were interviewed to gather data for this multi-case study. The data supported the hypotheses related to special education services in open-enrollment charter schools. The schools in this study provided special education services with an inclusion model for the first two years. In their first years of operation, charter schools face challenges of small budgets, few if any special education students, and difficulty finding special education teachers and other staff. In the third year and beyond, the schools were able to add special education services and staff and were more stable in terms of budget and operations. For the time period analyzed, special education costs exceeded special education funding. Compliance with special education regulations was relatively high ...
Date: December 2003
Creator: Rudebusch, Judith

An analysis of the effects of high school student concurrent enrollment at Collin County Community College District.

Description: As efforts to provide seamless transitions from high school to college grow, so do the numbers of high school students who concurrently enroll in college courses across the country. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of various aspects of the concurrent enrollment program at Collin County Community College District in Texas. Six research questions were designed to address student success and continuing enrollment patterns after high school graduation, as well as evaluate differences in the various models of dual credit classes offered by the college. Literature related to concurrent enrollment and dual credit programs, senior year of high school, and part-time faculty effectiveness was reviewed. Student issues addressed include: grade performance of concurrent enrollment students compared to the general college population; the percentage of concurrent enrollment students who continue at the college after high school graduation; and a comparison of continuing concurrent enrollment students with a matched sample (based on high school class rank), on the student success factors of fall-to-spring retention rates, fall-to-fall retention rates, grade point averages, and completion rates. Findings were generally positive related to the impact of concurrent enrollment on students and their subsequent success at the college. Various models of offering concurrent enrollment courses were also evaluated as measured by student performance in subsequent courses. Analysis of variance was used to determine differences based on the location at which the courses were taught (high school, college campus, or a college center); differences based on the mix of students in the class (all from one high school; all high school representing several schools; or a mix of high school and college students); and differences based on the employment status of the instructor (full-time college instructor; part-time college instructor; or high school teacher). Differences were examined for the entire sample, and for the ...
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Date: December 2003
Creator: Swanson, Kathrine Bridgett

An Annotated Bibliography of Selected Chamber Music For Saxophone, Winds and Percussion with Analyses Of Danses Exotiques by Jean Françaix, and Nonet by Fisher Tull

Description: An expansive repertoire of original chamber works is available for ensembles comprised of saxophone, wind and percussion instruments. Many musicians, including saxophonists and conductors, are unaware of this enormous body of literature. This produces a compelling need for sources of identification available to conductors, performers and teachers. This study begins to provide such a source through the presentation of selected works and the accompanying annotated bibliography. The lack of awareness of available scores for chamber music with saxophone, winds and percussion among conductors and many performers often contributes to the absence of these works in concert halls. The objective of this lecture-recital document is to make available a tool that includes only original works for the saxophone in a variety of chamber ensemble settings. The nature of this study will be descriptive. The literature chosen for this project reveals varying levels of performance difficulty, compositional techniques, form, and instrumentation. Chosen works employ an ensemble size that requires a conductor or are more successfully performed with a conductor. Selected compositions are illustrated in which the saxophone is identified as a vital ingredient in an already existing repertoire of serious chamber literature. Works in this study include original compositions using from seven to seventeen musicians. Some of the works discussed in this study include double bass and piano. Chapters include information on the Parameters of Study (Introduction, Historical Perspective, Sources, Criteria, Selection of Works for Analysis), composer Jean Françaix, a Historical Overview and Detailed Study of Danses Exotiques, composer Fisher Tull, a Historical Overview and Detailed Study of Nonet and an Annotated Bibliography of compositions matching the established criteria. Appendices include List of Works of Fisher Tull and Jean Françaix.
Date: December 2003
Creator: Fryer, Cheryl A.

Assessment of Resident and Staff Activity in a State Residential Setting

Description: Previous studies have demonstrated the use of momentary time-sampling methods for the objective measurement of naturally occurring events (Zarcone, Iwata, Rodgers & Vollmer, 1993; Shore, Lerman, Smith, Iwata & DeLeon, 1995). These studies have provided information about observed levels and characteristics of direct care services, supervision, resident activity and facility conditions. The present study evaluated the utility of these assessment procedures in a residential facility for developmentally delayed adults. The procedure was further evaluated for sensitivity to changes relative to an intervention designed to increase staff and client interaction. A multiple baseline design was used to assess a data collection procedure in the context of intervention in four residences on a state facility campus. Intervention included the use of scheduling, modeling and performance feedback. Results indicate an overall increase of staff and client interaction and demonstrate the utility of the assessment procedure for the evaluation of multiple, on-going activities as well as intervention effects.
Date: December 2003
Creator: Galletta, Katharine Lena

Characterization of Cure Kinetics and Physical Properties of a High Performance, Glass Fiber-Reinforced Epoxy Prepreg and a Novel Fluorine-Modified, Amine-Cured Commercial Epoxy.

Description: Kinetic equation parameters for the curing reaction of a commercial glass fiber reinforced high performance epoxy prepreg composed of the tetrafunctional epoxy tetraglycidyl 4,4-diaminodiphenyl methane (TGDDM), the tetrafunctional amine curing agent 4,4'-diaminodiphenylsulfone (DDS) and an ionic initiator/accelerator, are determined by various thermal analysis techniques and the results compared. The reaction is monitored by heat generated determined by differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and by high speed DSC when the reaction rate is high. The changes in physical properties indicating increasing conversion are followed by shifts in glass transition temperature determined by DSC, temperature-modulated DSC (TMDSC), step scan DSC and high speed DSC, thermomechanical (TMA) and dynamic mechanical (DMA) analysis and thermally stimulated depolarization (TSD). Changes in viscosity, also indicative of degree of conversion, are monitored by DMA. Thermal stability as a function of degree of cure is monitored by thermogravimetric analysis (TGA). The parameters of the general kinetic equations, including activation energy and rate constant, are explained and used to compare results of various techniques. The utilities of the kinetic descriptions are demonstrated in the construction of a useful time-temperature-transformation (TTT) diagram and a continuous heating transformation (CHT) diagram for rapid determination of processing parameters in the processing of prepregs. Shrinkage due to both resin consolidation and fiber rearrangement is measured as the linear expansion of the piston on a quartz dilatometry cell using TMA. The shrinkage of prepregs was determined to depend on the curing temperature, pressure applied and the fiber orientation. Chemical modification of an epoxy was done by mixing a fluorinated aromatic amine (aniline) with a standard aliphatic amine as a curing agent for a commercial Diglycidylether of Bisphenol-A (DGEBA) epoxy. The resulting cured network was tested for wear resistance using tribological techniques. Of the six anilines, 3-fluoroaniline and 4-fluoroaniline were determined to have lower wear than the ...
Date: December 2003
Creator: Bilyeu, Bryan

Clinical and Educational Efficacy of a University-Based Biofeedback Therapy Clinic.

Description: This study is a qualitative analysis and a quantitative analysis of all peripheral biofeedback client data files of the University of North Texas Biofeedback Research and Training Laboratory since its establishment in 1991 and through the year of 2002. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the clinical and educational efficacy of the BRTL. Clients' electromyography and temperature measures, self-report of homework relaxation exercises and progress, and the pre- and post-Stress Signal Checklist were reviewed and analyzed. In regard to clinical efficacy, results indicate statistically significant changes in both temperature training and muscle tension training as a whole group. When divided into subtypes based on the clients' primary presenting problem, findings indicate statistical significance in chronic pain, tension headache, and temporomandibular jaw pain on temperature training, and show statistical significance in chronic pain, tension headache, hypertension, migraine headache, stress, and temporomandibular jaw pain on muscle tension training. When analyzing the Stress Signal Checklist, only 25% of clients had complete information on both pre- and post-Stress Signal Checklist. For these 25%, 87.5% reported symptoms decreased. When reviewing the clients' self-reported progress in therapist's session notes, there is no procedure for computing a treatment success to failure ratio due to the inconsistency of therapists in recording clients' statements. This study also identifies three basic biofeedback learning curves that show how people learn self-regulation skills in biofeedback therapy: 1) steady state and trainable (low variability), 2) phasic state and trainable (high variability), and 3) phasic state and low trainable (high variability).
Date: December 2003
Creator: Shiau, Shwu-Huey

College and University Executive Leadership: The Impact of Demography on the Propensity for Strategic Change

Description: This study explores the relationship between diversity within executive decision-making teams at institutions of higher education and their propensity for strategic change. Previous research in the areas of strategic change, group decision making, and higher education was drawn from in this study. Statistically significant relationships were discovered the demographic background of executive decision-making teams at public colleges and universities, as measured by both the pursuit of new degree and certificate program offerings and multiple measures of student retention. The results also indicated the presence of an insufficiently diverse pool of potential executives for colleges and universities to draw from.
Date: December 2003
Creator: Fincher, Mark

Community College Faculty Knowledge of Legal Issues and Students with Disabilities: A Case Study.

Description: The purpose of this study was to investigate the extent of Prince George's Community College faculty knowledge of the legal issues, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, The Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990, and recent court decisions, related to the provision of classroom accommodations for students with disabilities at the postsecondary level. The focus of the study was to determine if a difference existed between the knowledge of full-time and part-time faculty. Part-time faculty comprise over 50 % of the instructional staffs at most community colleges and are considered an integral part of their institutions, yet they are offered little opportunity for professional development. The variables of gender, department affiliation, teaching at more than one institution, number of years of teaching experience, number of students taught with a disability, and number of individuals known with a disability also were reviewed. Data were collected through a questionnaire distributed to 158 faculty members at the college. Twenty-nine packets were returned as undeliverable. Of the 129 deliverable packets, 57 were returned for a response rate of 44.2%. Results from the analysis of data indicated that faculty have very limited knowledge of the legal issues concerning students with disabilities. Only 26.9% of respondents scored at an acceptable level of knowledge. Additional analysis suggested no relationship existed between faculty knowledge and gender, faculty status (full-time and part-time), department affiliation, teaching at more than one institution, number of years of teaching experience, or number of individuals known with a disability. A relationship was found at the p < .05 level of significant between faculty knowledge and number of students taught with a disability. Faculty who scored in the acceptable range had a mean score of 24 or more students taught with a disability. Faculty scoring in the unacceptable range had a mean score ...
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Date: December 2003
Creator: Hopkins, Kathleen C.

Comparative Bioavailability of Dietary and Dissolved Cadmium to Freshwater Aquatic Snails

Description: Heavy metal bioaccumulation in aquatic organisms may occur through direct or indirect uptake routes. Research indicates that the significance of uptake route varies with contaminant and organism exposed. The relative importance of different metal sources in aquatic systems was investigated by exposing freshwater snails to dietary or dissolved sources of cadmium. Snails were exposed to control, contaminated food only, contaminated water only, and contaminated food and water treatments. During the 15-day exposure, samples were taken to determine Cd concentration in snail soft tissue, snail shell, algal food, and overlying water. Analyses of snail soft tissue and shells indicate that exposure route significantly affects Cd concentrations in the tissues. In both cases, dissolved Cd is the primary contributor to metal body burden.
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Date: December 2003
Creator: White, Jessica C.

A Comparison of Agent-Oriented Software Engineering Frameworks and Methodologies

Description: Agent-oriented software engineering (AOSE) covers issues on developing systems with software agents. There are many techniques, mostly agent-oriented and object-oriented, ready to be chosen as building blocks to create agent-based systems. There have been several AOSE methodologies proposed intending to show engineers guidelines on how these elements are constituted in having agents achieve the overall system goals. Although these solutions are promising, most of them are designed in ad-hoc manner without truly obeying software developing life-cycle fully, as well as lacking of examinations on agent-oriented features. To address these issues, we investigated state-of-the-art techniques and AOSE methodologies. By examining them in different respects, we commented on the strength and weakness of them. Toward a formal study, a comparison framework has been set up regarding four aspects, including concepts and properties, notations and modeling techniques, process, and pragmatics. Under these criteria, we conducted the comparison in both overview and detailed level. The comparison helped us with empirical and analytical study, to inspect the issues on how an ideal agent-based system will be formed.
Date: December 2003
Creator: Lin, Chia-En

Copper Electrodeposition on Iridium, Ruthenium and Its Conductive Oxide Substrate

Description: The aim of this thesis was to investigate the physical and electrochemical properties of sub monolayer and monolayer of copper deposition on the polycrystalline iridium, ruthenium and its conductive oxide. The electrochemical methods cyclic voltammetry (CV) and chronocoulometry were used to study the under potential deposition. The electrochemical methods to oxidize the ruthenium metal are presented, and the electrochemical properties of the oxide ruthenium are studied. The full range of CV is presented in this thesis, and the distances between the stripping bulk peak and stripping UPD peak in various concentration of CuSO4 on iridium, ruthenium and its conductive oxide are shown, which yields thermodynamic data on relative difference of bonding strength between Cu-Ru/Ir atoms and Cu-Cu atoms. The monolayer of UPD on ruthenium is about 0.5mL, and on oxidized ruthenium is around 0.9mL to 1.0mL. The conductive oxide ruthenium presents the similar properties of ruthenium metal. The pH effect of stripping bulk peak and stripping UPD peak of copper deposition on ruthenium and oxide ruthenium was investigated. The stripping UPD peak and stripping bulk peak disappeared after the pH ≥ 3 on oxidized ruthenium electrode, and a new peak appeared, which means the condition of pH is very important. The results show that the Cl- , SO42- , Br- will affect the position of stripping bulk peak and stripping UPD peak: the stripping bulk peak will shift and decrease if the concentration of halide ions is increasing, and the monolayer of UPD will increase at the same time.
Date: December 2003
Creator: Huang, Long

Corporate Christians and Terrible Turks: Economics, Aesthetics, and the Representation of Empire in the Early British Travel Narrative, 1630 - 1780

Description: This dissertation examines the evolution of the early English travel narrative as it relates to the development and application of mercantilist economic practices, theories of aesthetic representation, and discourses of gender and narrative authority. I attempt to redress an imbalance in critical work on pre-colonialism and colonialism, which has tended to focus either on the Renaissance, as exemplified by the works of critics such as Stephen Greenblatt and John Gillies, or on the later eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, as in the work of scholars such as Srinivas Aravamudan and Edward Said. This critical gap has left early travel narratives by Sir Francis Moore, Jonathan Harris, Penelope Aubin, and others largely neglected. These early writers, I argue, adapted the conventions of the travel narrative while relying on the authority of contemporary commercial practices. The early English travelers modified contemporary conventions of aesthetic representation by formulating their descriptions of non-European cultures in terms of the economic and political conventions and rivalries of the early eighteenth century. Early English travel literature, I demonstrate, functioned as a politically motivated medium that served both as a marker of authenticity, justifying the colonial and imperial ventures that would flourish in the nineteenth century, and as a forum for experimentation with English notions of gender and narrative authority.
Date: December 2003
Creator: Abunasser, Rima Jamil

Cost Savings Realized Through Proper Sizing of an Excessive Instrument Air System.

Description: The purpose of this research was to determine if installing a smaller air compressor could reduce the electrical usage of a large semiconductor manufacturing plant. A 200 horsepower Atlas Copco compressor was installed with the existing 500 horsepower Ingersoll-Rand compressors. Testing was conducted during the regular manufacturing process at MEMC Southwest in Sherman, Texas. Analysis of the data found that installing the new compressor could reduce electrical consumption. The study also found there are specific operational setpoints that allow the compressor to operate more efficiently.
Date: December 2003
Creator: Condron, Ewell D.

Differences in Depressive Symptoms as a Function of Gender, Roles, and Rumination

Description: Research indicates that women are more likely to experience depression than are men. The current study examined the effects of gender, socialized gender roles, rumination, and neuroticism on symptoms of depression in young adults. As predicted, rumination mediated the relationship between gender and depression, and socialized gender roles had a greater explanatory power for rumination, neuroticism, and depression than did gender. Contrary to predictions, rumination did not mediate neuroticism's effects on depression. Structural equation modeling reveled that rumination-on-sadness positively predicted neuroticism and depression. However, rumination-in-general, while positively predicting neuroticism, negatively predicted symptoms of depression. Finally, once socialized gender roles, rumination, and neuroticism were controlled, male gender was modestly predictive of depression.
Date: December 2003
Creator: Wupperman, Peggilee

Early Literacy: An Examination of the Principal Behaviors That Impact Reading Achievement

Description: Literacy is fundamental to formal education, learning, and training for future career related skills. It provides not only the means of acquisition of information and skills during schooling, but it is a vital predictor of a person's general level of education in school as well as successful completion of schooling. Literacy skills serve as the major foundational skill for all school-based learning and without it, chances for academic and occupational success are limited. Despite the efforts of teachers, a significant portion of students continue to fail to achieve success in early literacy in school, with severe consequences for their subsequent educational progress, career opportunities and life chances. The extent of this problem varies throughout school systems. All of our children are affected by their reading ability, and as educators it is critical to provide for all students the most effective literacy programs and strategies which are research based, data-driven and successfully replicated. Because of the psychological, social and economic consequences of reading failure, it is critical to review the research to determine the risk factors that may predispose youngsters to reading failure, and the instructional practices that can be applied to ameliorate reading deficits at the earliest possible time. The failure to achieve in literacy is a fact, which continues to carry dire social and economic consequences for the children, as well as for this society. Furthermore, there is a substantial body of research indicating that schools have a narrow window of opportunity to make a difference. Students who fail to make progress in literacy during the first two years of school rarely catch up with their peers and are at-risk of becoming low achievers who are alienated from school and who dropout of education at the earliest opportunity. On the other hand, impressive empirical evidence is now available to ...
Date: December 2003
Creator: Baker, Brenda

The Early Music Ensemble in 21st Century America

Description: The early music ensemble has evolved from a counterculture to a mainstream musical genre. Because of this early music is having to learn arts management. Once a unique force it now competes with other arts organizations for funding and audience. Unlike other arts groups, early music has little help from within to clarify non-profit management. Through three types of surveys that were e-mailed to 239 early music organizations and 20 early music societies, an assessment of what is currently happening with early music ensembles in terms of growth, funding and over all well-being can be made. The information obtained revealed that most early music ensembles have little or no training in how to run an organization. This inexperience is creating problems and changing the face of early music. Information from the surveys also reveals that even with the economic problems over the last three years, early music is continuing to survive.
Date: December 2003
Creator: Assid, Tonya

Ecuadorian Children: an Investigation Into the Effects Frequenting the Street Has on the Children of Cuenca, Ecuador.

Description: The purpose of this study was to examine the effects frequenting the street had on the social-emotional development of children in Cuenca, Ecuador. While the study sought to discover who these children were, it primarily observed the levels of trust these children felt in the various contexts of their lives, their level of safety, where they saw themselves in the future, what made a place feel like a home, their sense of self-esteem, and how they saw themselves contributing to their future. The research instrument used in this study was a modified youth questionnaire previously developed by Tyler and Tyler (1991) in a study with street children/youth in Bogóta, Colombia. The results are presented in 11 case studies of children who ranged in age between 7 and 12 years.
Date: December 2003
Creator: McBride, Rachel

The Effects of a Computer-mediated Intervention on "At-risk" Preschool Students' Receptive Vocabulary and Computer Literacy Skills.

Description: This study examined the effects of a computer-mediated intervention on "at-risk" preschool students' receptive vocabulary development, computer-literacy skills, and enthusiasm for leaning. Twenty-two preschool-aged children attending an urban primary public school and participating in government subsidized school lunch program participated in the study. A pretest/posttest control-group design and case-study participant observations were used for data collection. Students were assigned to one of two treatment groups. Eleven preschool students with pretest School Readiness Composite (SRC) standard scores of 80, or below, on the Bracken Basic Concept Scale-Revised (BBCS-R), were assigned to the intervention group. Eleven pre-school students matched by age level and teacher comprised the comparison group. The intervention group received computer-mediated instruction while the comparison group received classroom teacher instruction. The first research question examined the effect of the intervention on students' receptive vocabulary analyzing groups' pretest and posttest BBCS-R School Readiness Composite mean scores. Combined analysis of a Two-Factor Repeated Measures and a Posttest only ANCOVA revealed that computer-mediated instruction was as effective as classroom teacher instruction in helping "at-risk" students acquire readiness receptive vocabulary. The second research question examined the effect of the intervention on "at-risk" student's computer-literacy skills analyzing participants pretest and posttest mean scores on the Computer Input Observation Rubric (CIOR), a rubric developed by the researcher. Analysis of One-Factor ANOVA and of Two-Factor Repeated Measures indicated that computer intervention significantly increased students' computer literacy skills. The third research question examined the impact of computer-mediated intervention on preschool students' enthusiasm for learning and followed descriptive case study methodology. Students' level of task involvement and positive-self statements confirmed enthusiasm for learning with technology.
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Date: December 2003
Creator: Alman, Lourdes Fraga

The Effects of a Remote Control Tactile Feedback System on Conversation Skills in Children with Autism.

Description: A few studies have examined the effects of a remote control tactile device (RCT) as an unobtrusive prompting method used to promote skills such as verbal initiations and play behaviors in children with autism. To date, however, no published studies have investigated the effects of the RCT as a consequence to increase and maintain conversation skills. This study was designed to determine whether the RCT, in conjunction with common training techniques (i.e. roleplays, visual feedback, and sibling coaching), could be used as a discrete and unobtrusive feedback system to promote conversation skills in high functioning children with autism. Results found that the RCT and training packages were effective in initially increasing rates of target responses. The effects however, did not always maintain with a return to baseline. Programming "naturally" maintaining communities of reinforcement was found to be a critical factor in the maintenance of the conversational responses.
Date: December 2003
Creator: Shively, Jane M.

The Effects of an Intensive Format of the Landreth Filial Therapy Training Model Compared to the Traditional Landreth Filial Therapy Model

Description: This research study investigated the effectiveness of an intensive format of the traditional Landreth filial therapy training (LFTT) model compared to the traditional LFTT model. Specifically, this study compared the intensive LFTT group and the traditional LFTT group at post-testing in the areas of: (a) reducing stress related to parenting, (b) increasing parental empathic behavior with their children, (c) increasing parental acceptance toward their children, and (d) reducing perceived child behavior problems. The traditional LFTT group consisted of 13 parents in groups of up to six members for 10 90-minute weekly sessions. Traditional LFTT involved didactic instruction, required at-home laboratory playtimes, and supervision. Parents were taught child-centered play therapy skills of responsive listening, recognizing children's emotional needs, therapeutic limit setting, building children's self-esteem, and structuring required weekly playtimes with their children using a kit of specially selected toys. The intensive LFTT group consisted of 13 parents in groups of up to four members who met on four Saturdays for 4 hours each. The traditional LFTT model was modified to teach the same material over fewer sessions. The difference in this delivery was fewer opportunities for parents to have home playtimes and receive feedback from the researcher. To compensate for this difference and attempt to maintain the effectiveness of the traditional model, the researcher had parents bring their children to training. The researcher used the parents' children in live demonstrations of the skills being taught. Parents were able to practice the new skills with their own children under direct supervision from the researcher followed by immediate feedback. This modification provided supervision equivalent to that of the traditional LFTT model. The results of this study were no statistically significant differences between the intensive and traditional groups at post-testing on overall parenting stress, parental acceptance and empathic behaviors with their children, and in ...
Date: December 2003
Creator: Ferrell, Lisa G.

The Effects of "Errorless" Training and Testing on the Performances of Typically Developing Children During Acquisition and Retention.

Description: This study examines the effects of two teaching procedures and two testing procedures (“Skip” and “Guess”) on acquisition, retention and generalization of learning. Three typically developing females between the ages of 8 and 11 learned the 24 lower case letters of the Greek alphabet. Half of the letters were taught with the “Skip” procedure and the other half with the “Guess” procedure. The “Skip” procedure produced faster and more efficient learning than the “Guess” procedure. The “Skip” procedure also resulted in better initial retention (4 weeks), but this effect disappeared in subsequent retention tests. The training conditions did not have differential effects on generalization tests across learning channels, except for the Free/Say channel.
Date: December 2003
Creator: Arnadottir, Iris