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Ability Estimation Under Different Item Parameterization and Scoring Models

Description: A Monte Carlo simulation study investigated the effect of scoring format, item parameterization, threshold configuration, and prior ability distribution on the accuracy of ability estimation given various IRT models. Item response data on 30 items from 1,000 examinees was simulated using known item parameters and ability estimates. The item response data sets were submitted to seven dichotomous or polytomous IRT models with different item parameterization to estimate examinee ability. The accuracy of the ability estimation for a given IRT model was assessed by the recovery rate and the root mean square errors. The results indicated that polytomous models produced more accurate ability estimates than the dichotomous models, under all combinations of research conditions, as indicated by higher recovery rates and lower root mean square errors. For the item parameterization models, the one-parameter model out-performed the two-parameter and three-parameter models under all research conditions. Among the polytomous models, the partial credit model had more accurate ability estimation than the other three polytomous models. The nominal categories model performed better than the general partial credit model and the multiple-choice model with the multiple-choice model the least accurate. The results further indicated that certain prior ability distributions had an effect on the accuracy of ability estimation; however, no clear order of accuracy among the four prior distribution groups was identified due to an interaction between prior ability distribution and threshold configuration. The recovery rate was lower when the test items had categories with unequal threshold distances, were close at one end of the ability/difficulty continuum, and were administered to a sample of examinees whose population ability distribution was skewed to the same end of the ability continuum.
Date: May 2002
Creator: Si, Ching-Fung B.

Alcohol and Other Drugs: Attitudes and Use Among Graduate/Professional Students at a Health Science Center

Description: Alcohol and other drug use continue to be a major issue on college and university campuses. Few studies have examined alcohol and other drug related issues for a graduate or professional student population. This study examines attitudes, incidents, and consequences of alcohol and other drug use among students enrolled at an academic heath science center. This study incorporated a descriptive research design and utilized the CORE Alcohol and Drug Survey for the collection of data. The data were then analyzed using descriptive statistics and represented in tables as frequencies and percentages. The survey was mailed to all students enrolled in didactic course work at the University of North Texas Health Science Center (UNTHSC) during the fall 2001 semester. This included master's students in physician assistant studies, master's and doctoral students in the biomedical sciences, master's and doctoral students in public health, as well as first and second year medical students. Of the 565 students enrolled in didactic course work, 321 responded to the survey for a return rate of 56.8 %. Statistically significant findings are reported for students at UNTHSC in relation to perceptions of use, actual use, reasons for use, and consequences for use. Similar findings are shown relative to age, gender, marital status, ethnicity, and academic program. Additionally, the UNTHSC students reported statistically significant lower levels of alcohol and drug use, as well as consequences of use than the students represented in the CORE Institutes 2000 national data set. This study identifies the need to investigate alcohol and drug related attitudes, behaviors, and consequences among students studying for professions in health related fields. However, the findings are only relevant to UNTHSC and cannot be generalized to any other population. The study provides personnel at UNTHSC a guide for the development of prevention and intervention programs.
Date: August 2002
Creator: Moorman, Mark Thomas

Analysis Of Sequential Barycenter Random Probability Measures via Discrete Constructions

Description: Hill and Monticino (1998) introduced a constructive method for generating random probability measures with a prescribed mean or distribution on the mean. The method involves sequentially generating an array of barycenters that uniquely defines a probability measure. This work analyzes statistical properties of the measures generated by sequential barycenter array constructions. Specifically, this work addresses how changing the base measures of the construction affects the statististics of measures generated by the SBA construction. A relationship between statistics associated with a finite level version of the SBA construction and the full construction is developed. Monte Carlo statistical experiments are used to simulate the effect changing base measures has on the statistics associated with the finite level construction.
Date: December 2002
Creator: Valdes, LeRoy I.

And Drops of Rain Fall Like Tears: A Composition for Electroacoustic Music and Video

Description: And Drops of Rain Fall Like Tears is a composition for electroacoustic music with an optional ambient video component. The composition consists of a single movement electroacoustic work twenty-two minutes in duration. The piece creates an immersive sonic environment within the confines of a typical concert space, thereby recreating the powerful temper and subtle beauty of nature from different sonic perspectives. The paper is divided into four chapters, each discussing an element of the piece in detail. The introduction presents background information and compositional approach for the composition. Chapters 1 through 4 present detailed information related to the creation of both the electroacoustic music and video elements of the piece. Chapter 4 contains relevant information to the performance of the piece.
Date: May 2002
Creator: Thompson, Michael Allen

Anything Like Us

Description: Anything Like Us is a collection of poems with a critical introduction. In this introduction, I explore modern alternatives to Romantic and Neo-Romantic lyric expression. I conclude that a contemporary lyric that desires to be, in some fashion, about itself, must exhibit an acceptance of the mediating influences of time and language, while cultivating an inter-subjective point-of-view that does not insist too much on the authority of a single, coherent voice. The poems in Anything Like Us reflect, in both form and content, many of the conclusions advanced in the introduction. Nearly all the poems concern the desire for, and failure to find, meaningful connections in an uncertain world .
Date: August 2002
Creator: Roth, Matthew

Assessing the Effect of Inquiry-Based Professional Development on Science Achievement Tests Scores.

Description: This study analyzed student test scores to determine if teacher participation in an inquiry-based professional development was able to make a statistically significant difference in student achievement levels. Test scores for objectives that assessed the critical thinking skills and problem-solving strategies modeled in a science inquiry institute were studied. Inquiry-based experiences are the cornerstones for meeting the science standards for scientific literacy. State mandated assessment tests measure the levels of student achievement and are reported as meeting minimum expectations or showing mastery for specific learning objectives. Students test scores from the Texas Assessment of Academic Skills Test (TAAS) for 8th grade science and the Biology End Of Course (EOC) exams were analyzed using ANCOVA, Chi Square, and Logistic Regression, with the Iowa Test of Basic Skills (ITBS) 7th Grade Science Subtest as covariate. It was hypothesized that the students of Inquiry Institute teachers would have higher scale scores and better rates of mastery on the critical thinking objectives than the students of non-Institute teachers. It was also hypothesized that it would be possible to predict student mastery on the objectives that assessed critical thinking and problem solving based on Institute participation. This quasi-experimental study did not show a statistically significant difference between the two groups. The effects of inquiry-based professional development may not be determined by analyzing the results of the standardized tests currently being used in Texas. Inquiry training may make a difference, but because of factors such as the ceiling effect, insufficient time to implement the program, and test items that are intended to but do not address critical thinking skills, the TAAS and EOC tests may not accurately assess effects of the Inquiry Institute. The results of this study did indicate the best predictor of student mastery for the 8th grade science TAAS and Biology EOC may ...
Date: December 2002
Creator: Dickson, Teresa K.

Assessing the Efficacy of Learning Communities at Four North Texas Community Colleges.

Description: This observational study involving intact groups and convenient sampling examined learning communities at four North Texas Community Colleges. The purpose of this study was to determine if there was a significant difference in cathectic learning climate, inimical ambiance, academic rigor, affiliation and structure among students in learning communities and freestanding classes. Learning communities are gaining nationwide popularity as instruments of reform in Higher Education. Recent studies have discussed the benefits of learning communities to student, faculty and institutions. As learning communities are gaining popularity, especially at the community college level, there is a need to determine if the learning communities are significantly different than freestanding classes. The College Classroom Environment Scales, developed by Winston, Vahala, Nichols, Gillis, Wintrow, and Rome (1989), was used as the survey instrument for this study. Using SPSS 10.1, a multivariate analysis of variance, (Hotelling's T2) was performed on five dependent variables: cathectic learning climate (CLC), inimical ambiance (IA), academic rigor (AR), affiliation (AF), and structure (ST), which yielded a significant difference. The independent variable was learning community compared to freestanding classes (group). Follow-up independent t tests were also conducted to evaluate the differences in the means between the two groups and to explore which dependent variables contributed to the multivariate difference, which resulted in significant differences in inimical ambiance, affiliation and structure. The researcher concludes that learning communities make a difference for some learners, but not necessarily all and that more research needs to be conducted to find the answers to the questions concerning the efficacy and sustainability of learning communities in higher education.
Date: August 2002
Creator: Dodd, Patricia M.

An Assessment of the Parent Orientation Program at the University of North Texas

Description: Although most institutions offer a parent program option to the orientation program, there has been little formalized research into the quality, planning or programming of parent orientation. There has been very little research into the impact parent orientation has on parents and whether or not they feel that such programs have met their needs, particularly by gender, minority status, educational background, or by geographic distance from the institution. This study seeks to determine the effectiveness of the parent orientation program at the University of North Texas to the parents who participate in this program. The study attempts to measure whether parents feel that they have adequate information about the institution to adequately support their student through the college transition; if parents feel welcomed by the UNT campus community; and if they feel that they have developed resources and institutional contacts that may be useful in the future in assisting their child to have a successful college experience at UNT. The study, conducted in the summer of 2002, had 736 respondents. An instrument developed to determine parent's perceptions of the effectiveness of the parent orientation program consisted of 31 questions using a Likert scale. A t-Test was utilized to analyze the data because it is designed to compare the means of the same variable with two different groups. Generally, all aspects of the parent orientation program were found to be positive by each subgroup. Parents found value in the orientation program and how it prepared them to support their new college student. In all four components studied, women had a stronger feeling than the males. Minority status had no significant impact on the outcomes of orientation according to the participants. Educational background proved not to be a significant factor. Distance parents lived from UNT revealed significant difference in three of the ...
Date: December 2002
Creator: With, Elizabeth

Attrition Rates of Teachers Trained in Alternative Teacher Certification Programs, Those Trained in the Centers for the Professional Development of Teachers, and Those Trained in Traditional University Programs.

Description: This study uses teacher employment data provided by the State Board for Educator Certification to examine the similarities and differences between initial employment and attrition rates of teachers trained in three prevalent types of Texas teacher preparation programs; alternative certification programs (ACP), the centers for professional development of teachers (CPDT), and traditional certification programs (TCP). The population for the study includes all Texas teachers who completed training in these programs in 1995, 1996, and 1997. The study found that ACP participants gain employment as Texas public school teachers at a significantly higher rate than their CPDT and TCP trained peers in year-one after completion of their training. However, ACP completers experience higher attrition rates in each of the subsequent years investigated. The study concludes that the overall cumulative attrition rate of new teachers trained in these programs is not as pronounced as originally presumed, but that low production levels cannot keep up with the growing demand for new teachers. Teacher preparation program leaders must seek ways to recruit and train more teachers.
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Date: May 2002
Creator: Harris, Steven A.

Automaticity and Hemispheric Specialization in Emotional Expression Recognition: Examined using a modified Stroop Task

Description: The main focus of this investigation was to examine the automaticity of facial expression recognition through valence judgments in a modified photo-word Stroop paradigm. Positive and negative words were superimposed across male and female faces expressing positive (happy) and negative (angry, sad) emotions. Subjects categorized the valence of each stimulus. Gender biases in judgments of expressions (better recognition for male angry and female sad expressions) and the valence hypothesis of hemispheric advantages for emotions (left hemisphere: positive; right hemisphere: negative) were also examined. Four major findings emerged. First, the valence of expressions was processed automatically (robust interference effects). Second, male faces interfered with processing the valence of words. Third, no posers' gender biases were indicated. Finally, the emotionality of facial expressions and words was processed similarly by both hemispheres.
Date: August 2002
Creator: Beall, Paula M.

Autoradiographic Localization of Carbachol-Induced Second Messenger Response in the Rat Spinal Cord Following Inflammation.

Description: This study examined central mechanisms of persistent pain using an autoradiographic technique to localize phosphoinositide hydrolysis (PI) in the rat spinal cord dorsal horn. The lateral half of laminae I-II showed the highest levels of baseline PI turnover and carbachol-stimulated PI turnover in normal animals as well as after inflammation. Inflammation resulted in increased baseline PI turnover in this region of the ipsilateral (76%) and contralateral (65%) dorsal horns. Carbachol increased PI turnover in this region in normal rats (55%) and following inflammation (ipsilateral: 46%, contralateral: 45%). The absolute magnitudes of these increases were 1.85, 2.71, and 2.51 nCi/mg, respectively. The results of this study demonstrate the involvement of PI turnover in neural mechanisms of persistent pain, and provide evidence for the involvement of cholinergic systems in this process. Because spinal cholinergic systems have been reported to be anti-nociceptive, the present results appear to reflect an upregulation of anti-nociceptive activity in response to inflammation. Thus, the spinal cholinergic system may be a regulatory site within the anti-nociceptive pathway, and may provide an attractive target for the development of new therapeutic agents.
Date: May 2002
Creator: Moore, Jack

Bandanna, An Opera by Daron Aric Hagen with Libretto by Paul Muldoon, Commissioned by the College Band Directors National Association: The Origins of an Artwork with a Glimpse at its Musical Character Development

Description: All information for this study was obtained by original source documents, interviews with the principal participants and the personal observations of the writer. A complete transcript of interviews with Daron Aric Hagen Michael Haithcockand Robert De Simone are included as appendices. In1961 the College Band Directors National Association (CBDNA) created its commissioning project for the purpose of contracting prominent composers to contribute works of high quality to the growing wind repertoire. Recently, CBDNA commissioned works that sought to collaborate with other disciplines within the artistic community. These collaborative works added new depth to the wind repertoire and helped advance the genre to new levels of prominence. CBDNA commissioned Daron Aric Hagen to write an opera using winds in the pit. He titled the work Bandanna, based on Shakespeare's Othello. Hagen contracted Paul Muldoon to write the libretto. A consortium of 79 member schools contributed to the project. A total of $100,000.00 was paid to the composer. The Director of Bands at Baylor University conducted the premiere performance of Bandanna during the 1999 CBDNA convention on 25 February 1999. Hagen assigned instrumental, thematic and harmonic attributes to each character. There are literally thousands of interactions between these elements that weave a tight pattern of organic unity into the entire work, making it exceptionally rich with symbolism and innuendo. Though still in its infancy, the uniqueness of this work both in the manner in which it came into being and through its artistic merits are fascinating. Only the future will determine whether Bandanna has true longevity or will fade into the background as a historical curiosity.
Date: December 2002
Creator: Powell, Edwin C.

Burying the War Hatchet: Spanish-Comanche Relations in Colonial Texas, 1743-1821

Description: This dissertation provides a history of Spanish-Comanche relations during the era of Spanish Texas. The study is based on research in archival documents, some newly discovered. Chapter 1 presents an overview of events that brought both people to the land that Spaniards named Texas. The remaining chapters provide a detailed account of Spanish-Comanche interaction from first contact until the end of Spanish rule in 1821. Although it is generally written that Spaniards first met Comanches at San Antonio de Béxar in 1743, a careful examination of Spanish documents indicates that Spaniards heard rumors of Comanches in Texas in the 1740s, but their first meeting did not occur until the early 1750s. From that first encounter until the close of the Spanish era, Spanish authorities instituted a number of different policies in their efforts to coexist peacefully with the Comanche nation. The author explores each of those policies, how the Comanches reacted to those policies, and the impact of that diplomacy on both cultures. Spaniards and Comanches negotiated a peace treaty in 1785, and that treaty remained in effect, with varying degrees of success, for the duration of Spanish rule. Leaders on both sides were committed to maintaining that peace, although Spaniards were hampered by meager resources and Comanches by the decentralized organization of their society. The dissertation includes a detailed account of the Spanish expedition to the Red River in 1759, led by Colonel Diego Ortiz Parrilla. That account, based on the recently discovered diary of Juan Angel de Oyarzún, provides new information on the campaign as well as a reevaluation of its outcome. The primary intention of this study is to provide a balanced account of Spanish-Comanche relations, relying on the historical record as well as anthropological evidence to uncover, wherever possible, the Comanche side of the story. The ...
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Date: May 2002
Creator: Lipscomb, Carol A.

Carl Gottlieb Reissiger (1798-1859) Forgotten Composer for the Clarinet

Description: Carl Gottlieb Reissiger was a successful German composer, conductor, and teacher in the first half of the nineteenth century. At the height of his career, he was Hofkapellmeister of theater and opera in Dresden, a position he held until his death. He was a composer of more than 200 works in a multitude of different genres. Today he is mainly known as a composer of opera, a small portion of his total output as a composer. He wrote approximately eighty piano solos, eighty collections of songs or duets, nine masses, and many smaller sacred choral works, as well as 27 piano trios, seven piano quartets, and three piano quintets. In addition to these many works, he wrote five works for the clarinet: Concertino, op. 63, Duo Brillant for clarinet and piano, op. 130, Fantasie, op. 146, Second Fantasie, op. 180, and Adagio und Rondo alla polacca, op. 214. This document provides a biographical sketch of Reissiger, including his personal life, his life as a conductor, and his life as a composer. It also provides a look at the artistic life of his day: his fellow composers and the music they were writing for clarinet, outstanding clarinetists and the different instruments they were playing. The aim of this study is to provide a stylistic analysis of Reissiger's five works for clarinet, including a discussion of form, melody, harmony, and rhythm. This document puts forth the proposal that these works are worth resurrecting and that Reissiger, as a composer of clarinet music, is more than just a secondary composer.
Date: May 2002
Creator: Coltman, Charles Arthur

Cayes, Coral, Tourism and Ethnicity in Belize

Description: The development of tourism and more importantly eco-tourism has emerged as a primary objective for the government of Belize, Central America. This study examines two villages Seine Bight and Placencia located on a peninsula occupied by separate ethnic groups (Garifuna and Creole) that is located on a peninsula in Southern Belize. Seine Bight and Placencia are undergoing a change in economic activity to tourism. The study attempts to understand the role of ethnicity, socio-economic status, amount of contact with tourists, and the environment in regard to attitudes towards tourism utilizing quantitative and qualitative methods. The study also attempts to understand the organization and disorganization of productive activity on the peninsula and ethnicity over space and time. The point of diffusion and contact of different groups is reflected archeologically and historically in the marine landscape. The peninsula served not only as a natural harbor for those sailing up and down the coastline over time but also served as a point of diffusion of different groups reflected in changing place names, such as Placentia, Point Patient, and Pasciencia.
Date: August 2002
Creator: Key, Carol

"Ch'io t'abbandono" by Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy: A Dramatic Image of the Education and Aptitudes of the Composer

Description: The unpublished concert aria, "Ch'io t'abbandono," by Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy (1825), is representative of the adolescent composer's developing musical aesthetic. In this study, Mendelssohn's education, work ethic, and perfectionism are revealed, paradoxically, as both the catalysts for the piece's composition and also the reasons it was not published during Mendelssohn's lifetime. An exploration of the text, form, thematic usage, and performance demands of the aria yields specific examples of his uniquely balanced romantic-classicist style. A consideration of possible original performers of the piece, Franz Hauser and Eduard Devrient, leads to further discussion about the nature of the work as both a reflection of Mendelssohn's romantic self-expression and his appreciation for the Baroque melismatic style. The significance of the aria, both stylistic and biographical, is further delineated by a presentation of possible motivations for its composition. The musical setting of the text, as well as the text itself, indicates both Mendelssohn's awareness of himself as a maturing adolescent composer and his desire to be a composer of operatic works, a desire that was never fully realized.
Date: August 2002
Creator: Turley, Charles William

The Characteristics of Sociological Practitioners: A Social Psychological Examination

Description: Questionnaires were sent by mail and e-mail to 143 members of the Sociological Practice Association. The purpose of the questionnaire was to measure the role expectations as qualities (competencies), role expectations as actions, and role enactments of the respondents'. An additional goal was to examine how respondents perceived their work to be sociological in nature, and how they saw their work as different from the practices of social workers, counselors, and psychologists. The first question that was addressed was, “Do sociological practitioners have clear and unambiguous role expectations for their work as practitioners?” The data showed that most role expectations measured as competencies were clear and unambiguous, and only a few were ambiguous and unclear. The second question addressed was, “Do sociological practitioners perceive their role enactments to differ from other helping professionals such as social workers, counselors, and psychologists?” The data showed that sociological practitioners do perceive their role enactments to be different because of their use of sociological theory and their focus on social structures. The final question asked was, “How do sociological practitioners perceive their work as sociological in theory, methods, or both?” The data showed that sociological practitioners perceive their work as sociological based on their use of sociological theory. Most respondents reported that they used common scientific methods, and few reported the use of psychological theory.
Date: May 2002
Creator: Carr, Joel Lance

Characterization of cDNA and Genomic Clones for a Palmitoyl-acyl Carrier Protein Thioesterase and an Osmotin-Like PR5 Protein in Gossypium Hirsutum.

Description: Putative cotton cDNA clones and cognate genomic clones for a palmitoyl-acyl carrier protein (ACP) thioesterase (PATE) and an osmotin-like pathogenesis-related 5 (PR5) protein have been isolated and characterized. PATE is a class B fatty acid thioesterase with specificity for saturated long-chain fatty acids such as palmitate, and is implicated as a key enzyme to be targeted for regulation of fatty acid synthesis in order to alter cotton seed oil profiles. A nearly full-length 1.7-kb cDNA clone was isolated using a hybridization probe derived from an Arabidopsis PATE cDNA clone designated TE 3-2. A 17-kb genomic segment encompassing the PATE gene was also isolated, which has six exons and five introns with high sequence identity with other FatB cDNA/gene sequences. The deduced PATE preprotein amino acid sequence of 413 residues has putative signal sequences for targeting to the chloroplast stroma. PR5 proteins called osmotins are made in response to fungal pathogen stress or osmotic stress (water deprivation or salt exposure). Osmotins may actually form pores in fungal membranes, leading to osmotic rupture and destruction of the fungal cells. A cotton osmotin-like PR5 cDNA insert of 1,052 base-pairs was isolated and shown to encode a preprotein of 242 amino acids and is predicted to be secreted to the extracellular matrix as a neutral isoform. The deduced amino acid sequence has 16 cysteine residues that are highly conserved in osmotin-like proteins and are important in stabilizing the three-dimensional structure seen in thaumatin, zeamatin, and PR5-d. The intronless cognate cotton genomic clone has two putative ethylene response elements (GCC boxes) found in other PR5 gene promoter regions, as well as several tentative promoter/enhancer elements possibly involved in spatial/temporal gene expression.
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Date: May 2002
Creator: Yoder, David W.

Chief Student Affairs Officers in 4-Year Public Institutions of Higher Education: An Exploratory Investigation Into Their Conflict Management Styles and Praxis

Description: This study investigated the conflict management styles of chief student affairs officers in 4-year public institutions of higher education in the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. The data for the study were collected using Hall's Conflict Management Survey. The sample for the study consisted of 25 chief student affairs officers. The purpose of the study was to identify the conflict management style preferences of chief student affairs officers. The other variables studied to ascertain if they had an impact on the style preferences were age, gender, number of years of experience as a chief student affairs officer, ethnicity, and the size (enrollment) of their employing institution. The study found statistically significant associations (p<.05) between ethnicity and conflict management style, specifically the synergistic and win-lose styles, and between the synergistic style and age. The association between ethnicity and conflict management style could be attributed to the fact that the Caucasian group of chief student affairs officers comprised 66.7 % of the synergistic styles and 100 % of the win-lose styles. The association between the synergistic style and age could be due to the fact that the majority of the chief student affairs officers had a synergistic style, and of that group, 66.7 % were in the 50-59 age range. No statistically significant associations were found for correlations between conflict management style and gender; conflict management styles and number of years of experience as a chief student affairs officer; or conflict management styles and size (enrollment) of their employing institutions. The lack of significance shows that there are no associations between the conflict management styles of chief student affairs officers stratified according to gender, number of years of experience, and size (enrollment) of their employing institutions.
Date: August 2002
Creator: Van Duser, Trisha Lynn

Cohort Differences in Perceptions of Helpful Counselor Characteristics

Description: The present study examined age cohort differences in older and younger adults as they relate to perceptions of helpful counselor characteristics. The present study also assessed whether previous help-seeking behavior influences perceptions of what counselor characteristics would be helpful. The social influence model is used as basis for predictions. The first research hypothesis for the present study was that there would be an age by cohort interaction in perceptions of helpful counselor characteristics at both Time 1 (1991) and Time 2 (2001). The second research hypothesis was that there would be a main effect for cohort, with more recently born cohorts preferring more interpersonal counselor characteristics. The third research hypothesis was that there would be a main effect for age in endorsement of the social influence model. The fourth research hypothesis was that there would be a significant difference between the perceptions of those individuals who had previously sought help from a mental health professional and those individuals who had not sought help, regardless of age and cohort. A revised Adjective Check List (Gough, 1965; Gough & Heilbrum, 1983) was used to assess perceptions of helpful counselor characteristics. Chi-square analyses, MANOVA/supplementary ANOVAs, and exploratory factor analyses were used to test the research hypotheses. The first and second research hypotheses were supported. The third research hypothesis was not supported. The fourth research hypothesis was supported for Time 1, but not for Time 2. Limitations of the present study and implications of this research are discussed.
Date: August 2002
Creator: Utermark, Tamisha L

Coming in From the Cold: Integration into the European Union and Public Opinion on Democracy and the Market Economy in Central and Eastern Europe.

Description: The political economy transformations of the countries of Central and Eastern Europe have received a great deal of attention over the past decade. The focus of much research has been to examine the internal national reorientations of the countries with regard to the changes in political and economic conditions. The importance of the international reorientation of these countries toward Western Europe in general and the European Union in particular has been generally overlooked. This dissertation examines public opinion on the political and economic transformations within the framework of the direction of the international reorientations of the countries. The countries were divided into three categories, those that can be expected to be invited to join the European Union in the next enlargement, those that can be expected to join the European Union in a subsequent enlargement, and the countries not seeking European Union membership. Public opinion on democracy and the market economy and attitudinal factors that influence these opinions are compared in 16 countries in Central and Eastern Europe. The data are from the Central and East European Barometers 3-7 (1992 - 1996). The findings suggest that general opinions regarding satisfaction with democracy are not related to the status of the country seeking membership in the European Union while support from the market economy does differ. When examining attitudinal factors that are related to satisfaction with democracy and support for the market economy, differences emerged between the three categories of countries. These findings suggest that public opinion is in part shaped by the international orientations of the country and that changes in public opinion are important in understanding the political and economic transformation processes.
Date: May 2002
Creator: Zottarelli, Lisa K.

A Common Representation Format for Multimedia Documents

Description: Multimedia documents are composed of multiple file format combinations, such as image and text, image and sound, or image, text and sound. The type of multimedia document determines the form of analysis for knowledge architecture design and retrieval methods. Over the last few decades, theories of text analysis have been proposed and applied effectively. In recent years, theories of image and sound analysis have been proposed to work with text retrieval systems and progressed quickly due in part to rapid progress in computer processing speed. Retrieval of multimedia documents formerly was divided into the categories of image and text, and image and sound. While standard retrieval process begins from text only, methods are developing that allow the retrieval process to be accomplished simultaneously using text and image. Although image processing for feature extraction and text processing for term extractions are well understood, there are no prior methods that can combine these two features into a single data structure. This dissertation will introduce a common representation format for multimedia documents (CRFMD) composed of both images and text. For image and text analysis, two techniques are used: the Lorenz Information Measurement and the Word Code. A new process named Jeong's Transform is demonstrated for extraction of text and image features, combining the two previous measurements to form a single data structure. Finally, this single data measurements to form a single data structure. Finally, this single data structure is analyzed by using multi-dimensional scaling. This allows multimedia objects to be represented on a two-dimensional graph as vectors. The distance between vectors represents the magnitude of the difference between multimedia documents. This study shows that image classification on a given test set is dramatically improved when text features are encoded together with image features. This effect appears to hold true even when the available ...
Date: December 2002
Creator: Jeong, Ki Tai

Comparative biochemistry and genetic analysis of nucleoside hydrolase in Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Pseudomonas fluorescens.

Description: The pyrimidine salvage enzyme, nucleoside hydrolase, is catalyzes the irreversible hydrolysis of nucleosides into the free nucleic acid base and D-ribose. Nucleoside hydrolases have varying degrees of specificity towards purine and pyrimidine nucleosides. In E. coli, three genes were found that encode homologues of several known nucleoside hydrolases in protozoa. All three genes (designated yaaF, yeiK, and ybeK) were amplified by PCR and cloned. Two of the gene products (yeiK and ybeK) encode pyrimidine-specific nucleoside hydrolases, while the third (yaaF) encodes a nonspecific nucleoside hydrolase. All three were expressed at low levels and had different modes of regulation. As a comparative analysis, the homologous genes of Pseudomonas aeruginosa and P. fluorescens (designated nuh) were cloned. Both were determined to encode nonspecific nucleoside hydrolases. The nucleoside hydrolases of the pseudomonads exhibited markedly different modes of regulation. Both have unique promoter structures and genetic organization. Furthermore, both pseudomonad nucleoside hydrolase were found to contain an N-terminal extension of 30-35 amino acids that is shown to act as a periplasmic-signaling sequence. These are the first two nucleoside hydrolases, to date,that have been conclusively demonstrated to be exported to the periplasmic space. The physiological relevance of this is explained.
Date: December 2002
Creator: Fields, Christopher J.

A Comparison of Aural and Visual Instructional Methodologies Designed to Improve the Intonation Accuracy of Seventh Grade Violin and Viola Instrumentalists.

Description: The purpose of the study was to compare two instructional methodologies designed to improve the intonation accuracy of seventh grade violin and viola instrumentalists. The collection of data was in regard to (1) instructional methodology: aural and aural/visual, (2) performance tasks: A, B, and C; (3) individual pitches (seven from each of the music tasks), and (4) differences between instrument groups: violin and viola. Sixty-eight seventh grade string students from three string classes of two middle schools were randomly assigned to two experimental groups: (a) aural and (b) aural/visual. The instructional period was implemented daily in ten-minute sessions during twenty days by the orchestra instructors of each school. A pretest-posttest format was used to determine if there were any changes in the subjects' intonation accuracy from prior to after the instructional phase was implemented, and if these changes could be attributed to any of the methodologies. The testing material used on both testing sessions included three performance tasks composed of seven notes each. Subjects were recorded on both testing occasions. The data were the scores of absolute pitch deviation, measured in cents from equal temperament, from the pre- and postest; these were treated with analysis of variance. The ANOVA on the posttest scores indicated a non-significant difference between the instructional methodologies in their effectiveness to improve the subjects' ability to play in tune.
Date: May 2002
Creator: Núñez, Mario Leoncio