Search Results

Ultrafast Laser Sampling of a Plant Tissue and ion Conductivity Measurement for Investigation of Light Stress Generation Mechanisms

Description: In this study we applied ultra-short laser pulses on a biological sample (Arabidopsis), in order to cut it precisely in a square pattern and subsequently use it for studying stress generation mechanisms. For this purpose, we utilized femtosecond laser pulses at 100 fs pulse width and 80 MHz repetition rate. We took two processing parameters into consideration such as laser power, laser exposure time which is related to the stage speed. Therefore, we were able to find the laser optimum conditions for ablation of biological tissues. The mutant and wildtype (control) obtained from laser cutting with a size of 500 µm × 500 µm were directly transferred (in-situ with laser cutting) into a microfabricated chamber containing ~500 nanoliters deionized water for measuring ion conductivity. The ion conductivity is a signature of cell-death mechanisms caused by various stresses. A light with intensity of 100 µmol was exposed to the samples for 2 hours and 20 minutes as a source of stress. A quantitative electrical analysis with high accuracy was assured by utilizing a microchamber, which enables a measurement in nanoliter volume. We measured the impedance which is reciprocal of conductivity using a lock-in amplifier and a precise current source at frequency of 130 Hz. Initially high impedance of mutant sample tended to drop within 2 hours and finally approached the constant value which signified that the cell death mechanism was complete. However, the wildtype sample demonstrated approximately constant impedance (conductivity) during the experiment.
Date: August 2010
Creator: Abtahi, Seyed Ali
Partner: UNT Libraries

Hepatotoxicity of Mercury to Fish

Description: Tissue samples from spotted gar (Lepisosteus oculatus) and largemouth bass (Micropterus salmoides) were collected from Caddo Lake. Gar and bass livers were subjected to histological investigation and color analysis. Liver color (as abs at 400 nm) was significantly correlated with total mercury in the liver (r2 = 0.57, p = 0.02) and muscle (r2 = 0.58, p = 0.01) of gar. Evidence of liver damage as lipofuscin and discoloration was found in both species but only correlated with liver mercury concentration in spotted gar. Inorganic mercury was the predominant form in gar livers. In order to determine the role of mercury speciation in fish liver damage, a laboratory feeding study was employed. Zebrafish (Danio rerio) were fed either a control (0.12 ± 0.002 µg Hg.g-1 dry wt), inorganic mercury (5.03 ± 0.309 µg Hg.g-1 dry wt), or methylmercury (4.11 ± 0.146 µg Hg.g-1 dry wt) diet. After 78 days of feeding, total mercury was highest in the carcass of zebrafish fed methylmercury (12.49 ± 0.369 µg Hg.g-1 dry wt), intermediate in those fed inorganic mercury (1.09 ± 0.117 µg Hg.g-1 dry wt), and lowest in fish fed the control diet (0.48 ± 0.038 µg Hg.g-1 dry wt). Total mercury was highest in the viscera of methylmercury fed zebrafish (11.6 ± 1.86 µg Hg.g-1 dry wt), intermediate in those fed inorganic diets (4.3 ± 1.08 µg Hg.g-1 dry wt), and lowest in the control fish (below limit of detection). Total mercury was negatively associated with fish length and weight in methylmercury fed fish. Condition factor was not associated with total mercury and might not be the best measure of fitness for these fish. No liver pathologies were observed in zebrafish from any treatment.
Date: August 2010
Creator: Barst, Benjamin Daniel
Partner: UNT Libraries

Using Financial Rankings to Identify Characteristics of Libraries Serving Highly Profitable Private Law Firms

Description: This purpose of this study was to develop evidence of a relationship between law libraries and private law firm profitability for law library administrators to use when making strategic decisions that influence the value of their libraries. The highest ranked administrator at each private law firm listed on the 2008 Am Law 200 was invited to complete an online benchmarking survey. The adjusted sample population totaled 179 firms. Fifty-one valid surveys were completed for a 28.5% response rate. Descriptive and statistical analyses were conducted using 26 independent variables (law library characteristics) and a single dependent variable, Revenue per Equity Partner, developed from data published for the Am Law 200. The most significant contributions of this study are: development of important law library financial and return on investment benchmarks; a listing of characteristics that have been empirically shown to impact law firm productivity; identification of optimum reporting structure for the law library administrator. Six characteristics positively impact Revenue per Equity Partner: to whom the library Administrator reports, number of library staff per library, number of Library staff per library, range in hourly bill rate for library staff time, practice areas most often supported. Two monetary measures were also established. The cost benefit of an Am Law library to its firm is $1.00 : $1.68. Each Am Law Library staff member is worth $295,000 in Revenue per Equity Partner to a firm. Law library practitioners can use the results to support evidenced-based strategic decision making in the administration of any private law firm library. Faculty and students in law librarianship programs will have a greater understanding of how to manage law libraries and collections to provide maximum value to their law firms. Benefits to library and information science research include validation of the research design and benchmarking as a theoretical framework for ...
Date: August 2010
Creator: Carroll, Margaret Aby
Partner: UNT Libraries

Interactions of N-Acylethanolamine Metabolism and Abscisic Acid Signaling in Arabidopsis Thaliana Seedlings

Description: N-Acylethanolamines (NAEs) are endogenous plant lipids hydrolyzed by fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH). When wildtype Arabidopsis thaliana seeds were germinated and grown in exogenous NAE 12:0 (35 µM and above), growth was severely reduced in a concentration dependent manner. Wildtype A. thaliana seeds sown on exogenous abscisic acid (ABA) exhibited similar growth reduction to that seen with NAE treatment. AtFAAH knockouts grew and developed similarly to WT, but AtFAAH overexpressor lines show markedly enhanced sensitivity to ABA. When low levels of NAE and ABA, which have very little effect on growth alone, were combined, there was a dramatic reduction in seedling growth in all three genotypes, indicating a synergistic interaction between ABA and NAE. Notably, this synergistic arrest of seedling growth was partially reversed in the ABA insensitive (abi) mutant abi3-1, indicating that a functional ABA signaling pathway is required for the full synergistic effect. This synergistic growth arrest results in an increased accumulation of NAEs, but no concomitant increase in ABA levels. The combined NAE and ABA treatment induced a dose-dependent increase in ABI3 transcript levels, which was inversely related to growth. The ABA responsive genes AtHVA22B and RD29B also had increased expression in both NAE and ABA treatment. The abi3-1 mutant showed no expression of ABI3 and AtHVA22B, but RD29B expression remained similar to wildtype seedlings, suggesting an alternate mechanism for NAE and ABA interaction. Taken together, these data suggest that NAE metabolism acts through ABI3-dependent and independent pathways in the negative regulation of seedling development.
Date: August 2010
Creator: Cotter, Matthew Q.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Anxiety, Depression, and Sleep Disorders: Their Relationship and Reduction with Neurotherapy

Description: This study investigated the relationship among anxiety, depression, and sleep disturbances and the treatment of these three disorders through neurotherapy. Research suggests that these conditions commonly co-occur in the general population and that central nervous system (CNS) arousal may play a primary role in the development and maintenance of these disorders. Several recent studies suggested that neurotherapy, a biofeedback-based treatment for CNS dysregulation, might be an effective treatment for comorbid conditions, particularly the ones of interest here, depression, anxiety, and sleep disturbances. This investigation used a clinical case-series design to assess pre/post neurotherapy changes on objective measures of anxiety, depression, and sleep and to determine whether changes in anxiety and depression then predict improvements in sleep quality. Data for 23 participants (10 males) were obtained from files of adults (Mage = 40.22 years, SD = 16.20) who received at least 15 neurotherapy sessions (M = 47.83 sessions, SD = 22.23) the University of North Texas Neurotherapy Lab. Matched pair t-tests revealed that symptoms of sleep disturbance, depression, and anxiety showed significant improvements following neurotherapy. Neurotherapy treatment effect sizes generally ranged from moderate to large (d = .414 - .849). Multiple regression analysis found that changes in self-reported anxiety symptoms, but not depressive symptoms, predicted observed improvements in sleep quality (adjusted R2 = .26). Last, the implications and limitations were discussed in relation to neurotherapy practice and the associated research.
Date: August 2010
Creator: Fisher, Christopher, Alan
Partner: UNT Libraries

Information Literacy Skills in the Workplace: A Study of Police Officers

Description: Information literacy has become more important as more information is produced and communication has become easier. Better information skills are vital for individuals working in governmental organizations as well as in the business sector. Employees are expected to be confident and competent in interacting with information in their workplaces in order to deliver better service to customers and to the public. This study examines the differences in information literacy skills (ILS), computer literacy skills (CLS), and frequencies of use of information sources (FIS) among police officers, based on their socio-demographic characteristics, namely education, departmental affiliation, ranks, and experience. Information literacy process models developed in an educational environment are combined to explore information literacy process in the workplace. Bivariate and multivariate analyses indicated significant differences of ILS and CLS based on education, departmental affiliation, and ranks but no difference for experience. In addition, there were differences of FIS for all demographic variables except departmental affiliation. The findings of the study may guide both future researchers in the process of developing new models in understanding information literacy process and the managers in police organizations in planning better training programs by considering information and computer literacy skills and use of information sources of police officers.
Date: August 2010
Creator: Kilic, Osman
Partner: UNT Libraries

Non-Linear and Multi-Linear Time in Beethoven's Opus 127: An Analytical Study of the "Krakow" Sketch Materials

Description: Beethoven's complex manipulation of formal structures, especially his tendency to build important connections and transformative continuities between non-adjacent sections of musical works, may be seen to function as an attempt to control and sometimes to distort the listener's perception of both the narrative process of musical directionality, as well as the subjective interpretation of time itself. Temporal distortion often lies at the heart of Beethoven's complex contrapuntal language, demonstrated equally through the composer's often enigmatic disruption of phrase-periodic gestures, as well as by occasional instances of overtly incongruous temporal shifts. The "Krakow" collection of compositional sketches for Beethoven's String Quartet in E-Flat, Op. 127, provides a number of instances of "non-linear" or "multi-linear" musical continuity. The term "Krakow" sketches, when referenced in this dissertation, specifically designates the group of Beethoven manuscripts possessed by the Biblioteka Jagiellońska in Krakow, Poland, but which formerly were held by the Royal Library in Berlin. Structural voice-leading analyses are provided for selected portions of the "Krakow" collection; these analyses are then compared to voice-leading graphs and analytical reductions of the corresponding material from Beethoven's published versions of the same musical passages. In some cases the sketches supply almost complete texts, for which critical transcriptions are included as extended examples within the dissertation. The primary analytical technique applied to both compositional sketches as well as to complete musical texts derives from Heinrich Schenker's theory of structural voice-leading and graphical reduction. An important method of critical assessment, from which a number of theoretical arguments are developed, is the contention that Beethoven's contrapuntal language, at least in regard to the op. 127 String Quartet, relies heavily upon a temporal distortion of both form and phrase-periodic gestures, requiring the listener to actively re-construct the continuity of Beethoven's subjective formal archetypes.
Date: August 2010
Creator: Lively, Michael
Partner: UNT Libraries

Algebraically Determined Rings of Functions

Description: Let R be any of the following rings: the smooth functions on R^2n with the Poisson bracket, the Hamiltonian vector fields on a symplectic manifold, the Lie algebra of smooth complex vector fields on C, or a variety of rings of functions (real or complex valued) over 2nd countable spaces. Then if H is any other Polish ring and φ:H →R is an algebraic isomorphism, then it is also a topological isomorphism (i.e. a homeomorphism). Moreover, many such isomorphisms between function rings induce a homeomorphism of the underlying spaces. It is also shown that there is no topology in which the ring of real analytic functions on R is a Polish ring.
Date: August 2010
Creator: McLinden, Alexander Patrick
Partner: UNT Libraries

Factors Influencing BI Data Collection Strategies: An Empirical Investigation

Description: The purpose of this dissertation is to examine the external factors that influence an organizations' business intelligence (BI) data collection strategy when mediated by BI attributes. In this dissertation, data warehousing strategies are used as the basis on which to frame the exploration of BI data collection strategies. The attributes include BI insightfulness, BI consistency, and the organizational transformation attribute of BI. The research population consisted of IT professionals and top level managers involved in developing and managing BI. Data was collected from a range of industries and organizations within the United States. An online survey was used to collect the data to empirically test the proposed relationships. Data was analyzed using partial least square path modeling (PLS). The results of this study suggest that there exists a positive relationship between institutional isomorphism and BI consistency. The results also indicate that there exists a positive relationship between BI consistency and BI comprehensive data collection strategy, and the organizational transformation attribute of BI and BI comprehensive data collection strategy. These findings provide a theoretical lens to better understand the motivators and the success factors related to collecting the huge amounts of data required for BI. This study also provides managers with a mental model on which to base decisions about the data required to accomplish their goals for BI.
Date: August 2010
Creator: Ramakrishnan, Thiagarajan
Partner: UNT Libraries

Resident Rights and Electronic Monitoring

Description: The purpose of this exploratory study was to examine resident, family member and staff perceptions of electronic monitoring and their effect on resident rights. The sample consisted of 53 nursing home residents, 104 staff and 25 family members, in the Dallas Fort Worth metroplex, from a nursing facility in which residents utilize video cameras in their rooms (Nursing Facility 1), two nursing facilities that have video cameras in their common rooms areas (Nursing Facility 2 and 3) and a nursing facility that does not utilize video cameras (Nursing Facility 4). The interview questions and self-administered surveys were in regard to the participant's perceptions of electronic monitoring, perceived risks and benefits of video cameras, awareness of resident rights and consciousness of potential risks to resident rights. Data were analyzed using a mixed methods approach using both ATLAS t.i and SAS. Study findings revealed that residents, family members and staff are aware of the potential benefits of electronic monitoring in nursing facilities. While respondents are hesitant to have electronic monitoring in resident rooms, they are interested in utilizing electronic monitoring in common areas. While residents and staff believe that electronic monitoring compromises resident rights, family members believe resident rights are protected. Different types of staff have different perceptions of electronic monitoring. Those staff members that are more directly involved in resident care are less accepting of electronic monitoring compared to staff that have episodic visits with residents. Among staff members, nursing facilities with prior experience with electronic monitoring are less accepting of electronic monitoring. Further studies are needed to enhance this research.
Date: August 2010
Creator: Shashidhara, Shilpa
Partner: UNT Libraries

A Determination of the Fine Structure Constant Using Precision Measurements of Helium Fine Structure

Description: Spectroscopic measurements of the helium atom are performed to high precision using an atomic beam apparatus and electro-optic laser techniques. These measurements, in addition to serving as a test of helium theory, also provide a new determination of the fine structure constant α. An apparatus was designed and built to overcome limitations encountered in a previous experiment. Not only did this allow an improved level of precision but also enabled new consistency checks, including an extremely useful measurement in 3He. I discuss the details of the experimental setup along with the major changes and improvements. A new value for the J = 0 to 2 fine structure interval in the 23P state of 4He is measured to be 31 908 131.25(30) kHz. The 300 Hz precision of this result represents an improvement over previous results by more than a factor of three. Combined with the latest theoretical calculations, this yields a new determination of α with better than 5 ppb uncertainty, α-1 = 137.035 999 55(64).
Date: August 2010
Creator: Smiciklas, Marc
Partner: UNT Libraries

Perspectives on Cultural Context: The Use of an Online Participatory Learning Environment as an Expansion of the Museum Visit

Description: Technology offers opportunities for museums to expand the ways in which cultural perspectives relevant to objects on display can be exchanged and understood. Multimedia content offered online in an environment with user input capabilities can encourage dialogue and enrich visitor experiences of museums. This action research project using narrative analysis was an effort to develop the use of web technology in museum education practice, with an emphasis on constructivist learning. Concepts including the visitor-centered museum and multiple narratives led the researcher to collaborate with a pre-service art teacher education classroom and a local Hindu community to create content that might better develop understandings of one museum's Hindu sculpture collection that are personal, cultural, and complex.
Date: August 2010
Creator: Sreenan, Patrick N.
Partner: UNT Libraries

"I Speak, Therefore I Am:" Identity and Self-Construction as Motivation to Engage in Electronic Word of Mouth

Description: To paraphrase an old bromide, "you are what you consume." Consumers derive their sense of self through products, brands, performances and a host of other meaning-laden materials that they consume. The marketing literature has long recognized possessions as an extension of the self-concept. Although hundreds of studies have examined the linkage between consumption and the self, surprisingly few have examined a related phenomenon - the relationship between the self-concept and word of mouth (WOM). A handful of studies have demonstrated the use of WOM to enhance the consumer's self-image, but most extant research focuses on how the act of engaging in WOM is used to build the self-concept. To date there has not been an extensive examination of the process by which WOM transfers the meaning of a product, brand, advertisement or narrative from one consumer to another as part of identity construction. This dissertation attempts to answer the following research questions: 1. Do self-concept and identity motivate consumers to engage in electronic word-of-mouth (eWOM)? 2. Is there a conceptual model to represent the effects of message characteristics, product/brand characteristics and individual personality differences on the self-enhancement value of eWOM and resulting eWOM behaviors? A conceptual model was proposed and, using an experimental research design, hypotheses were tested using structural equation modeling (SEM). The results suggest that self-concept and identity indeed motivate consumers to engage in eWOM, and a number of brand and message traits comprise eWOM's self-enhancement value. This dissertation both contributes to the theoretical understanding of eWOM and assists managers in developing marketing strategy. The use of WOM for identity construction remains an understudied area in marketing when compared to the consumption of products as self-expression. This research provides suggestions for practitioners in harnessing the potential of eWOM as a marketing strategy through message development and targeting of ...
Date: August 2010
Creator: Taylor, David George
Partner: UNT Libraries

Information Censorship: A Comparative Analysis of Newspaper Coverage of the Jyllands-Posten Editorial Caricatures in Cross-Cultural Settings

Description: The identification and examination of cultural information strategies and censorship patterns used to propagate the controversial issue of the caricatures in two separate cultural contexts was the aim of this dissertation. It explored discourse used for the coverage of this topic by one newspaper in a restrictive information context and two newspapers in a liberal information context. Message propagation in a restrictive information environment was analyzed using the English daily Kuwait Times from the Middle East; the liberal information environment of the US was analyzed using two major dailies, the New York Times and the Philadelphia Inquirer. The study also concurrently identifies and elaborates on the themes and frames through which discourse was presented exposing the cultural ideologies and premises they represent. The topic was approached with an interdisciplinary position with the support and applicability testing of Chatman's insider-outsider theory within information science and Noelle-Neumann's spiral of silence theory and Herman and Chomsky's propaganda model based in the area of mass communication. The study has also presented a new model of information censorship - circle of information censorship, emphasizing conceptual issues that influence the selection and censorship of information.
Date: August 2010
Creator: Thomas, Julie George
Partner: UNT Libraries

Functional Neural Toxicity and Endocrine Responses in Mice Following Naphthalene Exposure

Description: Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are a well studied and diverse class of environmental toxicants. PAHs act via the aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR), and studies have suggested that PAHs may elicit neurological and estrogenic effects. Doses of PAHs between 50 to 150 ppm may elicit neurotoxicity in rodent models. The present study investigated the effects of naphthalene on in vivo steroidogenesis in Swiss Webster male mice, and in vitro neural function of Balb-C/ICR mice frontal cortex neurons. These data suggest that naphthalene may not elicit steroidogenic effects at concentrations ranging from 0.2 to 25 mg/kg/day, following a 7 day subcutaneous dosing regime. In addition, naphthalene may cause functional toxicity of frontal cortex neurons at concentrations of 32 to 160 ppm naphthalene.
Date: August 2010
Creator: Colbert, Crystal
Partner: UNT Libraries

Life without Parole for Juvenile Offenders: Questions of Legality and Adolescent Culpability

Description: Life without parole for juvenile offenders is a controversial issue across the globe. Recently, the United States stands alone as the only country in the world that allows juvenile offenders to be sentenced to life time confinement without the possibility of parole. Furthermore, the U.S. has seen an increase in juvenile waivers and blended sentences, which has resulted in harsher penalties for juvenile offenders who have committed serious and violent crimes. This analysis examines scientific evidence that shows juveniles are different from adults in terms of brain development, rational decision making abilities, and maturity levels. These findings have questioned the reasoning behind imposing adult punishment on adolescent behavior. This analysis also presents the legal arguments suggesting that juvenile life without parole is unconstitutional and violates the Eighth and Fourteenth Amendments. Arguments for and against life sentences were also presented. This study concludes with a discussion of policy implications, whether the U.S. Supreme Court should abolish juvenile life without parole sentencing practices and explores the possible future direction of juvenile sentencing in the United States.
Date: August 2010
Creator: Corrington, David L.
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Value of Ties: Impact of Director Interlocks on Acquisition Premium and Post-acquisition Performance

Description: Mergers and acquisitions (M&A) evolved as alternative governance structures for firms seeking to combine resources with other firms, access larger markets, or acquire strategic assets. In spite of managers’ enthusiasm about the practice, studies show mixed results regarding post-acquisition performance of acquiring firms. The impact of acquisitions on the performance of acquiring firms has therefore remained inconclusive. A few reasons for this have been suggested and recent meta-analytic research efforts indicate that studies in M&A may have ignored variables that have significant effects on post-acquisition performance. In a bid to extend the literature on M&A and identify cogent variables that impact on acquisition performance, this dissertation draws on social network theory to advance a proposition for the value-of-ties. This was done by examining the impact of directorate interlocks on acquisitions specifically and organizational strategy in general. A non-experimental cross-sectional study of 98 interlocked directorate companies simultaneously involved in acquisitions was conducted. Several multiple regression analyses were conducted and the results obtained suggest that there is a positive linear relationship between director interlocks and post-acquisition performance and that to some extent this relationship is moderated by acquisition experience. The study also showed that director interlocks have a negative linear relationship with acquisition premium. This study complements the body of knowledge on acquisitions and network theory. It also successfully combined a multi-level approach to research on organizations and strategic management.
Date: May 2014
Creator: Lawani, Uyi
Partner: UNT Libraries

Community College Student Success in Developmental Mathematics Courses: a Comparison of Four Instructional Methods

Description: The student success rates for three developmental mathematics courses (prealgebra, elementary algebra, and intermediate algebra) taught through four instructional methods (lecture, personalized system of instruction [PSI], hybrid, and online) were examined. The sample consisted of 9,211 students enrolled in a large Texas community college from fall 2009 through spring 2011. Student success was defined as a grade of C or better. Chi-square tests were used to compare the three developmental mathematics courses success rates. Statistically significant differences in student success were found between all four methods of instruction for all three mathematics courses (prealgebra: χ2 [df = 3] = 107.90, p < 0.001; elementary algebra: χ2 [df = 3] = 88.39, p < 0.001; intermediate algebra χ2 [df = 3] = 254.18, p < 0.001). Binary logistic regression modeling was used to determine to what extent age, gender, ethnicity, residency, Pell eligibility and mode of instruction accounted for the community college students’ course success for each of the three developmental mathematics courses. For prealgebra, the independent variables of gender, race, age, residency, and mode of instruction made statistically significant contributions to the model (χ2 [df = 14, n = 1,743] = 159.196, p < .001; Nagelkerke R2 = .119), with greater success among female, White, younger, out of country students taking the course through lecture. For elementary algebra, the independent variables of race, age, residency, and mode of instruction made statistically significant contributions to the logistic regression model (χ2 [df = 14, n = 2,731] = 816.223, p < .001; Nagelkerke R2 = .358), with greater success among , younger, out of country students taking the course through lecture, hybrid or PSI. For intermediate algebra, only race and Pell eligibility made a statistically significant contribution to the logistic regression, with greater success among White, Pell-eligible students, and mode of instruction ...
Date: May 2014
Creator: Keller, Judith
Partner: UNT Libraries

Framework for Evaluating Dynamic Memory Allocators Including a New Equivalence Class Based Cache-conscious Allocator

Description: Software applications’ performance is hindered by a variety of factors, but most notably by the well-known CPU-memory speed gap (often known as the memory wall). This results in the CPU sitting idle waiting for data to be brought from memory to processor caches. The addressing used by caches cause non-uniform accesses to various cache sets. The non-uniformity is due to several reasons, including how different objects are accessed by the code and how the data objects are located in memory. Memory allocators determine where dynamically created objects are placed, thus defining addresses and their mapping to cache locations. It is important to evaluate how different allocators behave with respect to the localities of the created objects. Most allocators use a single attribute, the size, of an object in making allocation decisions. Additional attributes such as the placement with respect to other objects, or specific cache area may lead to better use of cache memories. In this dissertation, we proposed and implemented a framework that allows for the development and evaluation of new memory allocation techniques. At the root of the framework is a memory tracing tool called Gleipnir, which provides very detailed information about every memory access, and relates it back to source level objects. Using the traces from Gleipnir, we extended a commonly used cache simulator for generating detailed cache statistics: per function, per data object, per cache line, and identify specific data objects that are conflicting with each other. The utility of the framework is demonstrated with a new memory allocator known as equivalence class allocator. The new allocator allows users to specify cache sets, in addition to object size, where the objects should be placed. We compare this new allocator with two well-known allocators, viz., Doug Lea and Pool allocators.
Date: August 2013
Creator: Janjusic, Tomislav
Partner: UNT Libraries

Lipodystrophy, Body Image and Depression in Hiv Positive Black Women

Description: Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) seropositive men on highly active antiretroviral therapy treatment (HAART) who experience lipodystrophy syndrome (LD), a side effect of HAART, rate themselves as more depressed than those who did not experience LD(Crane et al., 2008). Furthermore, men who rated their LD symptoms as more severe also scored higher on depression measures than men who experienced less severe symptoms. It is unknown these findings can be generalized to other groups of HIV positive individuals. The current study seeks to fill this gap in the literature by exploring the associations between LD, body image, and depressive symptoms in an archival sample of HIV positive Black women. This study aims to describe the body changes associated with HAART in a Black female sample and explore the relationships between LD, body image, depression, and quality of life. Findings supported past research indicating a correlation between depression and poor body image but did not indicate that body image quality of life moderated the relationship between perceived body changes and depression. Results expanded on the literature by indicating that perceived body changes may be more distressing to Black women with HIV than objective changes. Lastly, findings suggested that Black women may have inaccurate perceptions of their own body changes. These findings are particularly informative for healthcare workers who treat HIV+ women. It is imperative that they consider clients’ self-report as well as clinical symptoms.
Date: May 2014
Creator: Carr, Jarice N.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Investigating the Relationship Between Internet Attitudes of College Students and Their Stem (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) Career Perceptions

Description: Are our students just consumers of technology or do their interests in technology translate into positive perceptions about STEM majors and careers? This research aimed to describe the role of the Internet in undergraduate students’ academic and career perceptions in STEM areas. The purpose of the research was addressed in three parts. First, the attitudes of undergraduate students towards five functions of the Internet namely tool, toy, treasure, telephone and territory were described. Second, students’ STEM career-related perceptions were described in terms of their science and mathematics self-efficacy, outcome expectations, and attitudes towards a STEM career. Third, the relationship between the five Internet functions and the three STEM career-related perceptions was examined. The participants for this study were 566 undergraduate students from a large Southern university. The research design followed a mixed methods approach using multivariate analyses and content analyses. The findings of the research indicated that there was a small but meaningful relationship between undergraduate students’ Internet and STEM perceptions. In their daily lives, the students perceived the Internet more as a toy and a tool. For general career related purposes, they perceived the Internet more as a treasure and a tool. For STEM areas in particular, they perceived the treasure and toy dimensions of the Internet more relevant. Findings on the differences in students’ Internet and STEM career-related perceptions based on gender, major and enrollment in an Honors program are also discussed.
Date: August 2013
Creator: Periathiruvadi, Sita
Partner: UNT Libraries

Increasing the Players: Expanding the Bilateral Relationship of Conflict Management

Description: This research seeks to explore the behavior of international and regional organizations within conflict management. Previous research on conflict management primarily examines UN peacekeeping as the primary actor and lumps all non-UN actors into a single category. I disaggregate this category, examining how international and regional organizations interact when deciding to establish a peace mission, coordinate a peace mission with multiple organizations, and finally, how this interaction affects the success of peace missions. I propose a collective action theoretical framework in which organizations would rather another actor undertake the burden and costs of implementing a peace mission. I find the United Nations is motivated to overcome the collective action problem through an increase in the severity of the conflict. Regional organizations are motivated to establish a peace mission as the economic and political salience of the conflict increases, increasing the possibility of the regional organization acquiring club goods for its member states. The presence of a regional hegemon within a regional organization also significantly increases the likelihood of an organization both establishing a peace mission and taking on the primary role when coordinating a joint mission. I argue this is because a regional hegemon allows the organization to more easily overcome the collective action problem between its own member states due to the presence of a privileged actor.
Date: May 2014
Creator: Stull, Emily A.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Fundamental Issues in Support Vector Machines

Description: This dissertation considers certain issues in support vector machines (SVMs), including a description of their construction, aspects of certain exponential kernels used in some SVMs, and a presentation of an algorithm that computes the necessary elements of their operation with proof of convergence. In its first section, this dissertation provides a reasonably complete description of SVMs and their theoretical basis, along with a few motivating examples and counterexamples. This section may be used as an accessible, stand-alone introduction to the subject of SVMs for the advanced undergraduate. Its second section provides a proof of the positive-definiteness of a certain useful function here called E and dened as follows: Let V be a complex inner product space. Let N be a function that maps a vector from V to its norm. Let p be a real number between 0 and 2 inclusive and for any in V , let ( be N() raised to the p-th power. Finally, let a be a positive real number. Then E() is exp(()). Although the result is not new (other proofs are known but involve deep properties of stochastic processes) this proof is accessible to advanced undergraduates with a decent grasp of linear algebra. Its final section presents an algorithm by Dr. Kallman (preprint), based on earlier Russian work by B.F. Mitchell, V.F Demyanov, and V.N. Malozemov, and proves its convergence. The section also discusses briefly architectural features of the algorithm expected to result in practical speed increases.
Date: May 2014
Creator: McWhorter, Samuel P.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Opening Doors for Excellent Maternal Health Services: Perceptions Regarding Maternal Health in Rural Tanzania

Description: The worldwide maternal mortality rate is excessive. Developing countries such as Tanzania experience the highest maternal mortality rates. The continued exploration of issues to create ease of access for women to quality maternal health care is a significant concern. A central strategy for reducing maternal mortality is that every birth be attended by a skilled birth attendant, therefore special attention was placed on motivations and factors that might lead to an increased utilization of health facilities. This qualitative study assessed the perceptions of local population concerning maternal health services and their recommendations for improved quality of care. The study was conducted in the Karatu District of Tanzania and gathered data through 66 in-depth interviews with participants from 20 villages. The following components were identified as essential for perceived quality care: medical professionals that demonstrate a caring attitude and share information about procedures; a supportive and nurturing environment during labor and delivery; meaningful and informative maternal health education for the entire community; promotion of men’s involvement as an essential part of the system of maternal health; knowledgeable, skilled medical staff with supplies and equipment needed for a safe delivery. By providing these elements, the community will gain trust in health facilities and staff. The alignment the maternal health services offered to the perceived expectation of quality care will create an environment for increased attendance at health facilities by the local population.
Date: May 2014
Creator: McLendon, Pamela Ann
Partner: UNT Libraries