Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 35

Search results for: Dean Oelofse

35 Resistance to the South African Root-Knot Nematode Population Densities in Artemisia annua: An Anti-Malaria Ethnomedicinal Plant

Authors: Kgabo Pofu, Hintsa Araya, Dean Oelofse, Sonja Venter, Christian Du Plooy, Phatu Mashela

Abstract:

Nematode resistance to the tropical root-knot (Meloidogyne species) nematodes is one of the most preferred nematode management strategies in development of smallholder resource-poor farming systems. Due to its pharmacological and ethnomedicinal applications, Artemisia annua is one of the underutilised crops that have attracted attention of policy-makers in rural agrarian development in South Africa. However, the successful introduction of this crop in smallholder resource-poor farming systems could be upset by the widespread aggressive Meloidogyne species, which have limited management options. The objective of this study therefore was to determine the degree of nematode resistance to the South African M. incognita and M. javanica population densities on A. annua seedlings. Uniform three-week-old seedlings in pots containing pasteurised growing medium under greenhouse conditions were inoculated using a series of eggs and second-stage juveniles of two Meloidogyne species in separate trials. At 56 days after inoculation, treatments were highly significant on reproductive factor (RF) for M. incognita and M. javanica on A. annua, contributing 87 and 89% in total treatment variation of the variables, respectively. At all levels of inoculation, RF values for M. incognita (0.17-0.79) and M. javanica (0.02-0.29) were below unity, without any noticeable root galls. Infection of A. annua by both Meloidogyne species had no significant effects on growth variables. In conclusion, A. annua seedlings are resistant to the South African M. incognita and M. javanica population densities and could therefore be explored further for use in smallholder resource-poor farming systems.

Keywords: Medicinal Plants, ethnomedicial plants, underutilised crops, plant parasitic nematodes

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34 Middle Management Practices and Leadership in Higher Education, Comparative Case Studies of Two Selected Post-1992 UK Universities

Authors: Thouraya Eshami

Abstract:

The aim of this study is to understand, interpret and describe the dynamics of the management and leadership practices with its diverse constituents within the middle management cadre in two selected post-1992 UK universities. The information will be gleaned from interviews conducted with academics who became middle-managers (an AD, SGL and TL) in two selected case Higher Education Institutes. The term middle management is used to describe personnel occupying positions at the level of assistant deans, dean (which also referred to as associate deans), and team leaders.

Keywords: Higher Education, academic manager, associate dean, middle manager, post 1992 universities

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33 Household Food Wastage Assessment: A Case Study in South Africa

Authors: Fhumulani R. Ramukhwatho, Roelien du Plessis, Suzan H. H. Oelofse

Abstract:

There are a growing number of scientific papers, journals and reports on household food waste, the reason being that food waste has become a significant global issue that is costing billions of Rands in resources. To reduce food waste in a sustainable manner, it requires an understanding of the generation of food waste. This paper assesses household food wastage in the City of Tshwane Metropolitan Municipality (CTMM). A total of 210 interviewed participants using face-to-face interviews based on a structured questionnaire and the actual weighing of households’ food wasted was quantified using a weighing kitchen scale. Fifty-nine percent of respondents agreed that they wasted food, while 41% thought they did not waste food at all. Households wasted an average total of 6 kg of food waste per week per household. The study concluded that households buy and prepare more food that ends up wasted.

Keywords: Assessment, Food Waste, household, developing country

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32 Continuous Improvement of Teaching Quality through Course Evaluation by the Students

Authors: Valerie Follonier, Henrike Hamelmann, Jean-Michel Jullien

Abstract:

The Distance Learning University in Switzerland (UniDistance) is offering bachelor and master courses as well as further education programs. The professors and their assistants work at traditional Swiss universities and are giving their courses at UniDistance following a blended learning and flipped classroom approach. A standardized course evaluation by the students has been established as a component of a quality improvement process. The students’ feedback enables the stakeholders to identify areas of improvement, initiate professional development for the teaching teams and thus continuously augment the quality of instruction. This paper describes the evaluation process, the tools involved and how the approach involving all stakeholders helps forming a culture of quality in teaching. Additionally, it will present the first evaluation results following the new process. Two software tools have been developed to support all stakeholders in the process of the semi-annual formative evaluation. The first tool allows to create the survey and to assign it to the relevant courses and students. The second tool presents the results of the evaluation to the stakeholders, providing specific features for the teaching teams, the dean, the directorate and EDUDL+ (Educational development unit distance learning). The survey items were selected in accordance with the e-learning strategy of the institution and are formulated to support the professional development of the teaching teams. By reviewing the results the teaching teams become aware of the opinion of the students and are asked to write a feedback for the attention of their dean. The dean reviews the results of the faculty and writes a general report about the situation of the faculty and the possible improvements intended. Finally, EDUDL+ writes a final report summarising the evaluation results. A mechanism of adjustable warnings allows it to generate quality indicators for each module. These are summarised for each faculty and globally for the whole institution in order to increase the vigilance of the responsible. The quality process involves changing the indicators regularly to focus on different areas each semester, to facilitate the professional development of the teaching teams and to progressively augment the overall teaching quality of the institution.

Keywords: Distance Learning, Software tools, continuous improvement process, course evaluation, teaching quality

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31 Development of a Bi-National Thyroid Cancer Clinical Quality Registry

Authors: Liane J. Ioannou, Jonathan Serpell, Joanne Dean, Cino Bendinelli, Jenny Gough, Dean Lisewski, Julie Miller, Win Meyer-Rochow, Stan Sidhu, Duncan Topliss, David Walters, John Zalcberg, Susannah Ahern

Abstract:

Background: The occurrence of thyroid cancer is increasing throughout the developed world, including Australia and New Zealand, and since the 1990s has become the fastest increasing malignancy. Following the success of a number of institutional databases that monitor outcomes after thyroid surgery, the Australian and New Zealand Endocrine Surgeons (ANZES) agreed to auspice the development of a bi-national thyroid cancer registry. Objectives: To establish a bi-national population-based clinical quality registry with the aim of monitoring and improving the quality of care provided to patients diagnosed with thyroid cancer in Australia and New Zealand. Patients and Methods: The Australian and New Zealand Thyroid Cancer Registry (ANZTCR) captures clinical data for all patients, over the age of 18 years, diagnosed with thyroid cancer, confirmed by histopathology report, that have been diagnosed, assessed or treated at a contributing hospital. Data is collected by endocrine surgeons using a web-based interface, REDCap, primarily via direct data entry. Results: A multi-disciplinary Steering Committee was formed, and with operational support from Monash University the ANZTCR was established in early 2017. The pilot phase of the registry is currently operating in Victoria, New South Wales, Queensland, Western Australia and South Australia, with over 30 sites expected to come on board across Australia and New Zealand in 2018. A modified-Delphi process was undertaken to determine the key quality indicators to be reported by the registry, and a minimum dataset was developed comprising information regarding thyroid cancer diagnosis, pathology, surgery, and 30-day follow up. Conclusion: There are very few established thyroid cancer registries internationally, yet clinical quality registries have shown valuable outcomes and patient benefits in other cancers. The establishment of the ANZTCR provides the opportunity for Australia and New Zealand to further understand the current practice in the treatment of thyroid cancer and reasons for variation in outcomes. The engagement of endocrine surgeons in supporting this initiative is crucial. While the pilot registry has a focus on early clinical outcomes, it is anticipated that future collection of longer-term outcome data particularly for patients with the poor prognostic disease will add significant further value to the registry.

Keywords: Population Health, Thyroid Cancer, Quality improvement, clinical registry

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30 Adaptation in Translation of 'Christmas Every Day' Short Story by William Dean Howells

Authors: Mohsine Khazrouni

Abstract:

The present study is an attempt to highlight the importance of adaptation in translation. To convey the message, the translator needs to take into account not only the text but also extra-linguistic factors such as the target audience. The present paper claims that adaptation is an unavoidable translation strategy when dealing with texts that are heavy with religious and cultural themes. The translation task becomes even more challenging when dealing with children’s literature as the audience are children whose comprehension, experience and world knowledge are limited. The study uses the Arabic translation of the short story ‘Christmas Every Day’ as a case study. The short story will be translated, and the pragmatic problems involved will be discussed. The focus will be on the issue of adaptation. i.e., the source text should be adapted to the target language audience`s social and cultural environment.

Keywords: equivalence, children's literature, pragmatic adaptation, Arabic translation

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29 FMR1 Gene Carrier Screening for Premature Ovarian Insufficiency in Females: An Indian Scenario

Authors: Sarita Agarwal, Deepika Delsa Dean

Abstract:

Like the task of transferring photo images to artistic images, image-to-image translation aims to translate the data to the imitated data which belongs to the target domain. Neural Style Transfer and CycleGAN are two well-known deep learning architectures used for photo image-to-art image transfer. However, studies involving these two models concentrate on one-to-one domain translation, not one-to-multi domains translation. Our study tries to investigate deep learning architectures, which can be controlled to yield multiple artistic style translation only by adding a conditional vector. We have expanded CycleGAN and constructed Conditional CycleGAN for 5 kinds of categories translation. Our study found that the architecture inserting conditional vector into the middle layer of the Generator could output multiple artistic images.

Keywords: Genetic Counseling, FMR1 gene, fragile x-associated primary ovarian insufficiency, premutation

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28 A Comparison of Bias Among Relaxed Divisor Methods Using 3 Bias Measurements

Authors: Sumachaya Harnsukworapanich, Tetsuo Ichimori

Abstract:

The apportionment method is used by many countries, to calculate the distribution of seats in political bodies. For example, this method is used in the United States (U.S.) to distribute house seats proportionally based on the population of the electoral district. Famous apportionment methods include the divisor methods called the Adams Method, Dean Method, Hill Method, Jefferson Method and Webster Method. Sometimes the results from the implementation of these divisor methods are unfair and include errors. Therefore, it is important to examine the optimization of this method by using a bias measurement to figure out precise and fair results. In this research we investigate the bias of divisor methods in the U.S. Houses of Representatives toward large and small states by applying the Stolarsky Mean Method. We compare the bias of the apportionment method by using two famous bias measurements: The Balinski and Young measurement and the Ernst measurement. Both measurements have a formula for large and small states. The Third measurement however, which was created by the researchers, did not factor in the element of large and small states into the formula. All three measurements are compared and the results show that our measurement produces similar results to the other two famous measurements.

Keywords: Measurement, bias, apportionment, divisor, fair

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27 OnabotulinumtoxinA Injection for Glabellar Frown Lines as an Adjunctive Treatment for Depression

Authors: I. Witbooi, J. De Smidt, A. Oelofse

Abstract:

Negative emotions that are common in depression are coupled with the activation of the corrugator supercilli and procerus muscles in the glabellar region of the face. This research investigated the impact of OnabotulinumtoxinA (BOTOX) in the improvement of emotional states in depressed subjects by relaxing the mentioned muscles. The aim of the study was to investigate the effectiveness of BOTOX treatment for glabellar frown lines as an adjunctive therapy for Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) and to improve the quality of life and self-esteem of the subjects. It is hypothesized that BOTOX treatment for glabellar frown lines reduces depressive symptoms significantly and therefore augment conventional antidepressant medication. Forty-five (45) subjects diagnosed with MDD were assigned to a treatment (n = 15), placebo (n = 15), and control (n = 15) group. The treatment group received BOTOX injection, while the placebo group received saline injection into the Procerus and Corrugator supercilli muscles with follow-up visits every 3 weeks (weeks 3, 6 and 12 respectively). The control group received neither BOTOX nor saline injections and were only interviewed again on the 12th week. To evaluate the effect of BOTOX treatment in the glabellar region on depressive symptoms, the Montgomery-Asberg Depression Rating (MADRS) scale and the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) were used. The Quality of Life Enjoyment and Satisfaction Questionnaire-Short Form (Q-LES-Q-SF) and Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale (RSES) were used in the assessment of self-esteem and quality of life. Participants were followed up for a 12 week period. The expected primary outcome measure is the response to treatment, and it is defined as a ≥ 50% reduction in MADRS score from baseline. Other outcome measures include a clinically significant decrease in BDI scores and the increase in quality of life and self-esteem respectively. Initial results show a clear trend towards such differences. Results showed trends towards expected differences. Patients in the Botox group had a mean MADRS score of 14.0 at 3 weeks compared to 20.3 of the placebo group. This trend was still visible at 6 weeks with the Botox and placebo group scoring an average of 10 vs. 18 respectively. The mean difference in MDRS scores from baseline to 3 weeks were 9.3 and 2.0 for the Botox and placebo group respectively. Similarly, the BDI scores were lower in the Botox group (17.25) compared to the placebo group (19.43). The two self-esteem questionnaires showed expected results at this stage with the RSES 19.1 in the Botox group compared to 18.6 in the placebo group. Similarly, the Botox patients had a higher score for the Q-LES-Q-SF of 49.2 compared to 46.1 for the placebo group. Conclusions: Initial results clearly demonstrated that the use of Botox had positive effects on both scores of depressions and that of self-esteem when compared to a placebo group.

Keywords: Depression, adjunctive therapy, glabellar area, OnabotulinumtoxinA

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26 Shaping Lexical Concept of 'Mage' through Image Schemas in Dragon Age 'Origins'

Authors: Dean Raiyasmi, Elvi Citraresmana, Sutiono Mahdi

Abstract:

Language shapes the human mind and its concept toward things. Using image schemas, in nowadays technology, even AI (artificial intelligence) can concept things in response to their creator negativity or positivity. This is reflected inside one of the most selling game around the world in 2012 called Dragon Age Origins. The AI in form of NPC (Non-Playable Character) inside the game reflects on the creator of the game on negativity or positivity toward the lexical concept of mage. Through image schemas, shaping the lexical concept of mage deemed possible and proved the negativity or positivity creator of the game toward mage. This research analyses the cognitive-semantic process of image schema and shaping the concept of ‘mage’ by describing kinds of image schemas exist in the Dragon Age Origin Game. This research is also aimed to analyse kinds of image schemas and describing the image schemas which shaping the concept of ‘mage’ itself. The methodology used in this research is qualitative where participative observation is employed with five stages and documentation. The results shows that there are four image schemas exist in the game and those image schemas shaping the lexical concept of ‘mage’.

Keywords: Conceptual Metaphor, cognitive semantic, image-schema, video game

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25 Sea-Level Rise and Shoreline Retreat in Tainan Coast

Authors: Wen-Juinn Chen, Yi-Phei Chou, Jou-Han Wang

Abstract:

Tainan coast is suffering from beach erosion, wave overtopping, and lowland flooding; though most of the shoreline has been protected by seawalls, they still threatened by sea level rise. For coastal resources developing, coastal land utilization, and to draft an appropriate mitigate strategy. Firstly; we must assess the impact of beach erosion under a different scenario of climate change. Here, we have used the meteorological data since 1898 to 2012 to prove that the Tainan area did suffer the impact of climate change. The result shows the temperature has been raised to about 1.7 degrees since 1989. Also, we analyzed the tidal data near the Tainan coast (Anpin site and Junjunn site), it shows sea level rising with a rate about 4.1~4.8 mm/year, this phenomenon will have serious impacts on Tainan coastal area, especially it will worsen coastal erosion. So we have used Bruun rule to calculate the shoreline retreated rate at every two decade period since 2012. Wave data and bottom sand diameter D50 were used to calculate the closure depth that will be used in Bruun formula and the active length of the profile is computed by the beach slope and Dean's equilibrium concept. After analysis, we found that in 2020, the shoreline will be retreated about 3.0 to 12 meters. The maximum retreat is happening at Chigu coast. In 2060, average shoreline retreated distance is 22m, but at Chigu and Tsenwen, shoreline may be backward retreat about 70m and will be reached about 130m at 2100, this will cause a lot of coastal land loss to the sea, protect and mitigate project must be quickly performed.

Keywords: Climate Change, Coastal Erosion, Sea Level Rise, shoreline

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24 Convolution Neural Network Based on Hypnogram of Sleep Stages to Predict Dosages and Types of Hypnotic Drugs for Insomnia

Authors: Cheng-Yu Tsai, Wen-Te Liu, Shin-Mei Hsu, Yin-Tzu Lin, Chi Wu, Dean Wu, Ru-Yin Yang

Abstract:

Background: The results of previous studies compared the benefits and risks of receiving insomnia medication. However, the effects between hypnotic drugs used and enhancement of sleep quality were still unclear. Objective: The aim of this study is to establish a prediction model for hypnotic drugs' dosage used for insomnia subjects and associated the relationship between sleep stage ratio change and drug types. Methodologies: According to American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) guideline, sleep stages were classified and transformed to hypnogram via the polysomnography (PSG) in a hospital in New Taipei City (Taiwan). The subjects with diagnosis for insomnia without receiving hypnotic drugs treatment were be set as the comparison group. Conversely, hypnotic drugs dosage within the past three months was obtained from the clinical registration for each subject. Furthermore, the collecting subjects were divided into two groups for training and testing. After training convolution neuron network (CNN) to predict types of hypnotics used and dosages are taken, the test group was used to evaluate the accuracy of classification. Results: We recruited 76 subjects in this study, who had been done PSG for transforming hypnogram from their sleep stages. The accuracy of dosages obtained from confusion matrix on the test group by CNN is 81.94%, and accuracy of hypnotic drug types used is 74.22%. Moreover, the subjects with high ratio of wake stage were correctly classified as requiring medical treatment. Conclusion: CNN with hypnogram was potentially used for adjusting the dosage of hypnotic drugs and providing subjects to pre-screening the types of hypnotic drugs taken.

Keywords: insomnia, Hypnotic Drugs, convolution neuron network, polysomnography

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23 The Implementation of Educational Partnerships for Undergraduate Students at Yogyakarta State University

Authors: Broto Seno

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This study aims to describe and examine more in the implementation of educational partnerships for undergraduate students at Yogyakarta State University (YSU), which is more focused on educational partnerships abroad. This study used descriptive qualitative approach. The study subjects consisted of a vice-rector, two staff education partnerships, four vice-dean, nine undergraduate students and three foreign students. Techniques of data collection using interviews and document review. Validity test of the data source using triangulation. Data analysis using flow models Miles and Huberman, namely data reduction, data display, and conclusion. Results of this study showed that the implementation of educational partnerships abroad for undergraduate students at YSU meets six of the nine indicators of the success of strategic partnerships. Six indicators are long-term, strategic, mutual trust, sustainable competitive advantages, mutual benefit for all the partners, and the separate and positive impact. The indicator has not been achieved is cooperative development, successful, and world class / best practice. These results were obtained based on the discussion of the four formulation of the problem, namely: 1) Implementation and development of educational partnerships abroad has been running good enough, but not maximized. 2) Benefits of the implementation of educational partnerships abroad is providing learning experiences for students, institutions of experience in comparison to each faculty, and improving the network of educational partnerships for YSU toward World Class University. 3) The sustainability of educational partnerships abroad is pursuing a strategy of development through improved management of the partnership. 4) Supporting factors of educational partnerships abroad is the support of YSU, YSU’s partner and society. Inhibiting factors of educational partnerships abroad is not running optimally management.

Keywords: Education, Partnership, YSU, institutions and faculties

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22 Wellbeing Warriors: A Randomized Controlled Trial Examining the Effect of Martial Arts Training on Mental Health Outcomes

Authors: Brian Moore, Stuart Woodcock, Dean Dudley

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Mental health problems have significant social and economic consequences; however, many individuals do not seek traditional assistance for mental health difficulties. Martial arts training may provide an inexpensive alternative to traditional psychological therapy. While limited research has suggested martial arts training may be an efficacious intervention, the validity and reliability of this are questionable given the small number of relevant studies and other methodological problems. The study examined the effects of 10-week martial arts-based psycho-social intervention which was evaluated using a randomized controlled trial. The intervention was delivered to 283 secondary school students, aged between 12-14 years, who were recruited from government and catholic secondary schools in New South Wales, Australia. The intervention was delivered in a group format onsite at participating schools and had an intervention dose of 10 x 50-60 minute sessions, once per week for 10 weeks. Data were collected at baseline, post-intervention, and 12-week follow-up. Results found a consistent pattern for strength based wellbeing outcomes. All primary and secondary measures relating to resilience and self-efficacy improved for the intervention group and declined for the control group. As these findings were derived from a robust design and rigorous evaluation, they provide valid and reliable evidence that martial arts-based psycho-social interventions can be considered as an efficacious method of improving strength and wellbeing outcomes.

Keywords: Mental Health, Resilience, Self-efficacy, Martial Arts

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21 Faculty Attendance Management System (FAMS)

Authors: G. C. Almiranez, J. Mercado, L. U. Aumentado, J. M. Mahaguay, J. P. Cruz, M. L. Saballe

Abstract:

This research project focused on the development of an application that aids the university administrators to establish an efficient and effective system in managing faculty attendance and discourage unnecessary absences. The Faculty Attendance Management System (FAMS) is a web based and mobile application which is proven to be efficient and effective in handling and recording data, generating updated reports and analytics needed in managing faculty attendance. The FAMS can facilitate not only a convenient and faster way of gathering and recording of data but it can also provide data analytics, immediate feedback system mechanism and analysis. The software database architecture uses MySQL for web based and SQLite for mobile applications. The system includes different modules that capture daily attendance of faculty members, generate faculty attendance reports and analytics, absences notification system for faculty members, chairperson and dean regarding absences, and immediate communication system concerning the absences incurred. Quantitative and qualitative evaluation showed that the system satisfactory meet the stakeholder’s requirements. The functionality, usability, reliability, performance, and security all turned out to be above average. System testing, integration testing and user acceptance testing had been conducted. Results showed that the system performed very satisfactory and functions as designed. Performance of the system is also affected by Internet infrastructure or connectivity of the university. The faculty analytics generated from the system may not only be used by Deans and Chairperson in their evaluation of faculty performance but as well as the individual faculty to increase awareness on their attendance in class. Hence, the system facilitates effective communication between system stakeholders through FAMS feedback mechanism and up to date posting of information.

Keywords: Analytics, MySQL, faculty attendance management system, SQLite, FAMS

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20 RNAseq Reveals Hypervirulence-Specific Host Responses to M. tuberculosis Infection

Authors: Gina Leisching, Ray-Dean Pietersen, Carel Van Heerden, Paul Van Helden, Ian Wiid, Bienyameen Baker

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The distinguishing factors that characterize the host response to infection with virulent Mycobacterium tuberculosis (M.tb) are largely confounding. We present an infection study with two genetically closely related M.tb strains that have vastly different pathogenic characteristics. The early host response to infection with these detergent-free cultured strains was analyzed through RNAseq in an attempt to provide information on the subtleties which may ultimately contribute to the virulent phenotype. Murine bone marrow-derived macrophages (BMDMs) were infected with either a hyper- (R5527) or hypovirulent (R1507) Beijing M. tuberculosis clinical isolate. RNAseq revealed 69 differentially expressed host genes in BMDMs during comparison of these two transcriptomes. Pathway analysis revealed activation of the stress-induced and growth inhibitory Gadd45 signaling pathway in hypervirulent infected BMDMs. Upstream regulators of interferon activation such as and IRF3 and IRF7 were predicted to be upregulated in hypovirulent-infected BMDMs. Additional analysis of the host immune response through ELISA and qPCR included the use of human THP-1 macrophages where a robust proinflammatory response was observed after infection with the hypervirulent strain. RNAseq revealed two early-response genes (IER3 and SAA3) and two host-defence genes (OASL1 and SLPI) that were significantly upregulated by the hypervirulent strain. The role of these genes under M.tb infection conditions are largely unknown but here we provide validation of their presence with use of qPCR and Western blot. Further analysis into their biological role under infection with virulent M.tb is required.

Keywords: Mycobacterium Tuberculosis, virulence, RNAseq, host-response

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19 Improving Self-Administered Medication Adherence for Older Adults: A Systematic Review

Authors: Mathumalar Loganathan, Lina Syazana, Bryony Dean Franklin

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Background: The therapeutic benefit of self-administered medication for long-term use is limited by an average 50% non-adherence rate. Patient forgetfulness is a common factor in unintentional non-adherence. With a growing ageing population, strategies to improve self-administration of medication adherence are essential. Our aim was to review systematically the effects of interventions to optimise self-administration of medication. Method: Database searched were MEDLINE, EMBASE, PsynINFO, CINAHL from 1980 to 31 October 2013. Search terms included were ‘self-administration’, ‘self-care’, ‘medication adherence’, and ‘intervention’. Two independent reviewers undertook screening and methodological quality assessment, using the Downs and Black rating scale. Results: The search strategy retrieved 6 studies that met the inclusion and exclusion criteria. Three intervention strategies were identified: self-administration medication programme (SAMP), nursing education and medication packaging (pill calendar). A nursing education programme focused on improving patients’ behavioural self-management of drug prescribing. This was the most studied area and three studies highlighting an improvement in self-administration of medication. Conclusion: Results are mixed and there is no one interventional strategy that has proved to be effective. Nevertheless, self-administration of medication programme seems to show most promise. A multi-faceted approach and clearer policy guideline are likely to be required to improve prescribing for these vulnerable patients. Mixed results were found for SAMP. Medication packaging (pill calendar) was evaluated in one study showing a significant improvement in self-administration of medication. A meta-analysis could not be performed due to heterogeneity in the outcome measures.

Keywords: Intervention, self-administered medication, prescribing, older patients

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18 The Work Book Tool, a Lifelong Chronicle: Part of the "Designprogrammet" at the Design School of the University in Kalmar, Sweden

Authors: Henriette Jarild-Koblanck, Monica Moro

Abstract:

The research has been implemented at the Kalmar University now LNU Linnaeus University inside the Design Program (Designprogrammet) for several years. The Work Book tool was created using the framework of the Bologna declaration. The project concerns primarily pedagogy and design methodology, focusing on how we evaluate artistic work processes and projects and on how we can develop the preconditions for cross-disciplinary work. The original idea of the Work Book springs from the steady habit of the Swedish researcher and now retired full professor and dean Henriette Koblanck to put images, things and colours in a notebook, right from her childhood, writing down impressions and reflections. On this preliminary thought of making use of a work book, in a form freely chosen by the user, she began to develop the Design Program (Designprogrammet) that was applied at the Kalmar University now LNU Linnaeus University, where she called a number of professionals to collaborate, among them Monica Moro an Italian designer, researcher, and teacher in the field of colour and shape. The educational intention is that the Work Book should become a tool that is both inspirational for the process of thinking and intuitional creating, and personal support for both rational and technical thinking. The students were to use the Work Book not only to visually and graphically document their results from investigations, experiments and thoughts but also as a tool to present their works to others, -students, tutors and teachers, or to other stakeholders they discussed the proceedings with. To help the students a number of matrixes were developed oriented to evaluate the projects in elaboration, based on the Bologna Declaration. In conclusion, the feedback from the students is excellent; many are still using the Work Book as a professional tool as in their words they consider it a rather accurate representation of their working process, and furthermore of themselves, so much that many of them have used it as a portfolio when applying for jobs.

Keywords: Learning, Design, Art, Self-Assessment, academic program, assessment of student’s progress, Bologna Declaration

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17 Effect of Simulation on Anxiety and Knowledge among Novice Nursing Students

Authors: Suja Karkada, Jayanthi Radhakrishnan, Jansi Natarajan, Gerald, Amandu Matua, Sujatha Shanmugasundaram

Abstract:

Simulation-based learning is an educational strategy designed to simulate actual clinical situations in a safe environment. Globally, simulation is recognized by several landmark studies as an effective teaching-learning method. A systematic review of the literature on simulation revealed simulation as a useful strategy in creating a learning environment which contributes to knowledge, skills, safety, and confidence. However, to the best of the author's knowledge, there are no studies on assessing the anxiety of the students undergoing simulation. Hence the researchers undertook a study with the aim to evaluate the effectiveness of simulation on anxiety and knowledge among novice nursing students. This quasi-experimental study had a total sample of 69 students (35- Intervention group with simulation and 34- Control group with case scenario) consisting of all the students enrolled in the Fundamentals of Nursing Laboratory course during Spring 2016 and Fall 2016 semesters at a college of nursing in Oman. Ethical clearance was obtained from the Institutional Review Board (IRB) of the college of nursing. Informed consent was obtained from every participant. Study received the Dean’s fund for research. The data were collected regarding the demographic information, knowledge and anxiety levels before and after the use of simulation and case scenario for the procedure nasogastric tube feeding in intervention and control group respectively. The intervention was performed by four faculties who were the core team members of the course. Results were analyzed in SPSS using descriptive and inferential statistics. Majority of the students’ in intervention (82.9%) and control (89.9%) groups were equal to or below the age of 20 years, were females (71%), 76.8% of them were from rural areas and 65.2% had a GPA of more than 2.5. The selection of the samples to either the experimental or the control group was from a homogenous population (p > 0.05). There was a significant reduction of anxiety among the students of control group (t (67) = 2.418, p = 0.018) comparing to the experimental group, indicating that simulation creates anxiety among Novice nursing students. However, there was no significant difference in the mean scores of knowledge. In conclusion, the study was useful in that it will help the investigators better understand the implications of using simulation in teaching skills to novice students. Since previous studies with students indicate better knowledge acquisition; this study revealed that simulation can increase anxiety among novice students possibly it is the first time they are introduced to this method of teaching.

Keywords: Simulation, Knowledge, Anxiety, novice students

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16 Accreditation and Quality Assurance of Nigerian Universities: The Management Imperative

Authors: F. O Anugom

Abstract:

The general functions of the university amongst other things include teaching, research and community service. Universities are recognized as the apex of learning, accumulating and imparting knowledge and skills of all kinds to students to enable them to be productive, earn their living and to make optimum contributions to national development. This is equivalent to the production of human capital in the form of high level manpower needed to administer the educational society, be useful to the society and manage the economy. Quality has become a matter of major importance for university education in Nigeria. Accreditation is the systematic review of educational programs to ensure that acceptable standards of education, scholarship and infrastructure are being maintained. Accreditation ensures that institution maintain quality. The process is designed to determine whether or not an institution has met or exceeded the published standards for accreditation, and whether it is achieving its mission and stated purposes. Ensuring quality assurance in accreditation process falls in the hands of university management which justified the need for this study. This study examined accreditation and quality assurance: the management imperative. Three research questions and three hypotheses guided the study. The design was a correlation survey with a population of 2,893 university administrators out of which 578 Heads of department and Dean of faculties were sampled. The instrument for data collection was titled Programme Accreditation Exercise scale with high levels of reliability. The research questions were answered with Pearson ‘r’ statistics. T-test statistics was used to test the hypotheses. It was found among others that the quality of accredited programme depends on the level of funding of universities in Nigeria. It was also indicated that quality of programme accreditation and physical facilities of universities in Nigeria have high relationship. But it was also revealed that programme accreditation is positively related to staffing in Nigerian universities. Based on the findings of the study, the researcher recommend that academic administrators should be included in the team of those who ensure quality programs in the universities. Private sector partnership should be encouraged to fund programs to ensure quality of programme in the universities. Independent agencies should be engaged to monitor the activities of accreditation teams to avoid bias.

Keywords: Quality assurance, Accreditation, physical facilities, staffing, national universities commission

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15 In vitro and in vivo Anticancer Activity of Nanosize Zinc Oxide Composites of Doxorubicin

Authors: Emma R. Arakelova, Stepan G. Grigoryan, Flora G. Arsenyan, Nelli S. Babayan, Ruzanna M. Grigoryan, Natalia K. Sarkisyan

Abstract:

Novel nanosize zinc oxide composites of doxorubicin obtained by deposition of 180 nm thick zinc oxide film on the drug surface using DC-magnetron sputtering of a zinc target in the form of gels (PEO+Dox+ZnO and Starch+NaCMC+Dox+ZnO) were studied for drug delivery applications. The cancer specificity was revealed both in in vitro and in vivo models. The cytotoxicity of the test compounds was analyzed against human cancer (HeLa) and normal (MRC5) cell lines using MTT colorimetric cell viability assay. IC50 values were determined and compared to reveal the cancer specificity of the test samples. The mechanistic study of the most active compound was investigated using Flow cytometry analyzing of the DNA content after PI (propidium iodide) staining. Data were analyzed with Tree Star FlowJo software using cell cycle analysis Dean-Jett-Fox module. The in vivo anticancer activity estimation experiments were carried out on mice with inoculated ascitic Ehrlich’s carcinoma at intraperitoneal introduction of doxorubicin and its zinc oxide compositions. It was shown that the nanosize zinc oxide film deposition on the drug surface leads to the selective anticancer activity of composites at the cellular level with the range of selectivity index (SI) from 4 (Starch+NaCMC+Dox+ZnO) to 200 (PEO(gel)+Dox+ZnO) which is higher than that of free Dox (SI = 56). The significant increase in vivo antitumor activity (by a factor of 2-2.5) and decrease of general toxicity of zinc oxide compositions of doxorubicin in the form of the above mentioned gels compared to free doxorubicin were shown on the model of inoculated Ehrlich's ascitic carcinoma. Mechanistic studies of anticancer activity revealed the cytostatic effect based on the high level of DNA biosynthesis inhibition at considerable low concentrations of zinc oxide compositions of doxorubicin. The results of studies in vitro and in vivo behavior of PEO+Dox+ZnO and Starch+NaCMC+Dox+ZnO composites confirm the high potential of the nanosize zinc oxide composites as a vector delivery system for future application in cancer chemotherapy.

Keywords: Anticancer Activity, cancer specificity, doxorubicin, zinc oxide

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14 Economics of Precision Mechanization in Wine and Table Grape Production

Authors: Dean A. McCorkle, Ed W. Hellman, Rebekka M. Dudensing, Dan D. Hanselka

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The motivation for this study centers on the labor- and cost-intensive nature of wine and table grape production in the U.S., and the potential opportunities for precision mechanization using robotics to augment those production tasks that are labor-intensive. The objectives of this study are to evaluate the economic viability of grape production in five U.S. states under current operating conditions, identify common production challenges and tasks that could be augmented with new technology, and quantify a maximum price for new technology that growers would be able to pay. Wine and table grape production is primed for precision mechanization technology as it faces a variety of production and labor issues. Methodology: Using a grower panel process, this project includes the development of a representative wine grape vineyard in five states and a representative table grape vineyard in California. The panels provided production, budget, and financial-related information that are typical for vineyards in their area. Labor costs for various production tasks are of particular interest. Using the data from the representative budget, 10-year projected financial statements have been developed for the representative vineyard and evaluated using a stochastic simulation model approach. Labor costs for selected vineyard production tasks were evaluated for the potential of new precision mechanization technology being developed. These tasks were selected based on a variety of factors, including input from the panel members, and the extent to which the development of new technology was deemed to be feasible. The net present value (NPV) of the labor cost over seven years for each production task was derived. This allowed for the calculation of a maximum price for new technology whereby the NPV of labor costs would equal the NPV of purchasing, owning, and operating new technology. Expected Results: The results from the stochastic model will show the projected financial health of each representative vineyard over the 2015-2024 timeframe. Investigators have developed a preliminary list of production tasks that have the potential for precision mechanization. For each task, the labor requirements, labor costs, and the maximum price for new technology will be presented and discussed. Together, these results will allow technology developers to focus and prioritize their research and development efforts for wine and table grape vineyards, and suggest opportunities to strengthen vineyard profitability and long-term viability using precision mechanization.

Keywords: Robotic Technology, net present value, stochastic simulation, wine and table grapes

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13 Pre-Operative Psychological Factors Significantly Add to the Predictability of Chronic Narcotic Use: A Two Year Prospective Study

Authors: Dana El-Mughayyar, Neil Manson, Erin Bigney, Eden Richardson, Dean Tripp, Edward Abraham

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Use of narcotics to treat pain has increased over the past two decades and is a contributing factor to the current public health crisis. Understanding the pre-operative risks of chronic narcotic use may be aided through investigation of psychological measures. The objective of the reported study is to determine predictors of narcotic use two years post-surgery in a thoracolumbar spine surgery population, including an array of psychological factors. A prospective observational study of 191 consecutively enrolled adult patients having undergone thoracolumbar spine surgery is presented. Baseline measures of interest included the Pain Catastrophizing Scale (PCS), Tampa Scale for Kinesiophobia, Multidimensional Scale for Perceived Social Support (MSPSS), Chronic Pain Acceptance Questionnaire (CPAQ-8), Oswestry Disability Index (ODI), Numeric Rating Scales for back and leg pain (NRS-B/L), SF-12’s Mental Component Summary (MCS), narcotic use and demographic variables. The post-operative measure of interest is narcotic use at 2-year follow-up. Narcotic use is collapsed into binary categories of use and no use. Descriptive statistics are run. Chi Square analysis is used for categorical variables and an ANOVA for continuous variables. Significant variables are built into a hierarchical logistic regression to determine predictors of post-operative narcotic use. Significance is set at α < 0.05. Results: A total of 27.23% of the sample were using narcotics two years after surgery. The regression model included ODI, NRS-Leg, time with condition, chief complaint, pre-operative drug use, gender, MCS, PCS subscale helplessness, and CPAQ subscale pain willingness and was significant χ² (13, N=191)= 54.99; p = .000. The model accounted for 39.6% of the variance in narcotic use and correctly predicted in 79.7% of cases. Psychological variables accounted for 9.6% of the variance over and above the other predictors. Conclusions: Managing chronic narcotic usage is central to the patient’s overall health and quality of life. Psychological factors in the preoperative period are significant predictors of narcotic use 2 years post-operatively. The psychological variables are malleable, potentially allowing surgeons to direct their patients to preventative resources prior to surgery.

Keywords: Quality of Life, Spine Surgery, Narcotics, Psychological Factors

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12 Identifying Physical and Psycho-Social Issues Facing Breast Cancer Survivors after Definitive Treatment for Early Breast Cancer: A Nurse-Led Clinic Model

Authors: A. Dean, M. Pitcher, L. Storer, K. Shanahan, I. Rio, B. Mann

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Purpose: Breast cancer survivors are at risk of specific physical and psycho-social issues, such as arm swelling, fatigue, and depression. Firstly, we investigate symptoms reported by Australia breast cancer survivors upon completion of definitive treatment. Secondly, we evaluate the appropriateness and effectiveness of a multi-centre pilot program nurse-led clinic to identify these issues and make timely referrals to available services. Methods: Patients post-definitive treatment (excluding ongoing hormonal therapy) for early breast cancer or ductal carcinoma in situ were invited to participate. An hour long appointment with a breast care nurse (BCN) was scheduled. In preparation, patients completed validated quality-of-life surveys (FACT-B, Menopause Rating Scale, Distress Thermometer). During the appointment, issues identified in the surveys were addressed and referrals to appropriate services arranged. Results: 183 of 274 (67%) eligible patients attended a nurse-led clinic. Mean age 56.8 years (range 29-87 years), 181/183 women, 105/183 post-menopausal. 96 (55%) participants reported significant level of distress; 31 (18%) participants reported extreme distress or depression. Distress stemmed from a lack of energy (56/175); poor quality of sleep (50/176); inability to work or participate in household activities (35/172) and problems with sex life (28/89). 166 referrals were offered; 94% of patients accepted the referrals. 65% responded to a follow-up survey: the majority of women either strongly agreed or agreed that the BCN was overwhelmingly supportive, helpful in making referrals, and compassionate towards them. 39% reported making lifestyle changes as a result of the BCN. Conclusion: Breast cancer survivors experience a unique set of challenges, including low mood, difficulty sleeping, problems with sex life and fear of disease recurrence. The nurse-led clinic model is an appropriate and effective method to ensure physical and psycho-social issues are identified and managed in a timely manner. This model empowers breast cancer survivors with information about their diagnosis and available services.

Keywords: Survivorship, early breast cancer, breast care nursing, oncology nursing and cancer care

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11 Researching Servant Leadership Behaviors of Sport Managers

Authors: Betul Altinok

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The aim of this study is researching servant leadership behaviors of sports managers. For this purpose, Servant Leadership behaviors of Sport Managers (N=69) working as Dean, School Principal and Head of Department in Sport Sciences Faculties, Physical Education and Sport Schools and Departments educating Physical Education and Sport investigated via questionnaires applied to academicians (N=1185) working in these institutions. Servant Leadership Questionnaire sent via e-mail to all Academicians working in Physical Education and Sport educating Faculties, Schools of Universities and Departments in Turkey. 406 survey which is responded and accurately completed by Academicians were evaluated. In this study, Servant Leadership Questionnaire developed and conducted validity and reliability analysis by Barbuto and Wheeler (2006) used to investigate sports managers servant leadership behaviors. Scale translated into Turkish then validity and reliability analysis were conducted. After measurement model of servant leadership questionnaire verified, Shapiro Wilk normality test was applied to obtained data to determine whether has got a normal distribution or not, depending on gender, job title, profession time, department and evaluated manager. Results of practiced normality test showed that data has not got a normal distribution (nonparametric). After normality test, Mann Whitney-U test applied at 0.05 value for determining whether there is a difference between servant leadership scores according to gender and Kruskal Wallis Test applied at 0.05 value for determining whether there is a difference between servant leadership scores according to job title, profession time, department and evaluated manager. Test results showed that there were not differences between Altruistic Calling (p>0.05), Emotional Healing (p>0.05), Wisdom (p>0.05), Persuasive Mapping (p>0.05) and (p>0.05), Organizational Stewardship sub-dimensions according to gender. Test results showed that there were not differences between Altruistic Calling (p>0.05), Emotional Healing (p>0.05), Wisdom (p>0.05), Persuasive Mapping (p>0.05) and (p>0.05), Organizational Stewardship sub-dimensions according to job title, profession time, department and evaluated manager. In the light of study results, it can be said that applied survey is objective and unfurls evaluated managers servant leadership behaviors. Empirical and practical contribution of this study is to test sports managers servant leadership behaviors in Turkey for the very first time.

Keywords: Management, Sport, Servant Leadership, academicians

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10 A Qualitative Assessment of the Internal Communication of the College of Comunication: Basis for a Strategic Communication Plan

Authors: Edna T. Bernabe, Joshua Bilolo, Sheila Mae Artillero, Catlicia Joy Caseda, Liezel Once, Donne Ynah Grace Quirante

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Internal communication is significant for an organization to function to its full extent. A strategic communication plan builds an organization’s structure and makes it more systematic. Information is a vital part of communication inside the organization as this lays every possible outcome—be it positive or negative. It is, therefore, imperative to assess the communication structure of a particular organization to secure a better and harmonious communication environment in any organization. Thus, this research was intended to identify the internal communication channels used in Polytechnic University of the Philippines-College of Communication (PUP-COC) as an organization, to identify the flow of information specifically in downward, upward, and horizontal communication, to assess the accuracy, consistency, and timeliness of its internal communication channels; and to come up with a proposed strategic communication plan of information dissemination to improve the existing communication flow in the college. The researchers formulated a framework from Input-Throughout-Output-Feedback-Goal of General System Theory and gathered data to assess the PUP-COC’s internal communication. The communication model links the objectives of the study to know the internal organization of the college. The qualitative approach and case study as the tradition of inquiry were used to gather deeper understanding of the internal organizational communication in PUP-COC, using Interview, as the primary methods for the study. This was supported with a quantitative data which were gathered through survey from the students of the college. The researchers interviewed 17 participants: the College dean, the 4 chairpersons of the college departments, the 11 faculty members and staff, and the acting Student Council president. An interview guide and a standardized questionnaire were formulated as instruments to generate the data. After a thorough analysis of the study, it was found out that two-way communication flow exists in PUP-COC. The type of communication channel the internal stakeholders use varies as to whom a particular person is communicating with. The members of the PUP-COC community also use different types of communication channels depending on the flow of communication being used. Moreover, the most common types of internal communication are the letters and memoranda for downward communication, while letters, text messages, and interpersonal communication are often used in upward communication. Various forms of social media have been found out to be of use in horizontal communication. Accuracy, consistency, and timeliness play a significant role in information dissemination within the college. However, some problems have also been found out in the communication system. The most common problem are the delay in the dissemination of memoranda and letters and the uneven distribution of information and instruction to faculty, staff, and students. This has led the researchers to formulate a strategic communication plan which aims to propose strategies that will solve the communication problems that are being experienced by the internal stakeholders.

Keywords: Internal Communication, communication plan, downward communication, upward communication

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9 Characterization of the MOSkin Dosimeter for Accumulated Dose Assessment in Computed Tomography

Authors: Helen J. Khoury, Lenon M. Pereira, Marcos E. A. Andrade, Dean L. Cutajar, Vinicius S. M. Barros, Anatoly B. Rozenfeld

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With the increase of beam widths and the advent of multiple-slice and helical scanners, concerns related to the current dose measurement protocols and instrumentation in computed tomography (CT) have arisen. The current methodology of dose evaluation, which is based on the measurement of the integral of a single slice dose profile using a 100 mm long cylinder ionization chamber (Ca,100 and CPPMA, 100), has been shown to be inadequate for wide beams as it does not collect enough of the scatter-tails to make an accurate measurement. In addition, a long ionization chamber does not offer a good representation of the dose profile when tube current modulation is used. An alternative approach has been suggested by translating smaller detectors through the beam plane and assessing the accumulated dose trough the integral of the dose profile, which can be done for any arbitrary length in phantoms or in the air. For this purpose, a MOSFET dosimeter of small dosimetric volume was used. One of its recently designed versions is known as the MOSkin, which is developed by the Centre for Medical Radiation Physics at the University of Wollongong, and measures the radiation dose at a water equivalent depth of 0.07 mm, allowing the evaluation of skin dose when placed at the surface, or internal point doses when placed within a phantom. Thus, the aim of this research was to characterize the response of the MOSkin dosimeter for X-ray CT beams and to evaluate its application for the accumulated dose assessment. Initially, tests using an industrial x-ray unit were carried out at the Laboratory of Ionization Radiation Metrology (LMRI) of Federal University of Pernambuco, in order to investigate the sensitivity, energy dependence, angular dependence, and reproducibility of the dose response for the device for the standard radiation qualities RQT 8, RQT 9 and RQT 10. Finally, the MOSkin was used for the accumulated dose evaluation of scans using a Philips Brilliance 6 CT unit, with comparisons made between the CPPMA,100 value assessed with a pencil ionization chamber (PTW Freiburg TW 30009). Both dosimeters were placed in the center of a PMMA head phantom (diameter of 16 cm) and exposed in the axial mode with collimation of 9 mm, 250 mAs and 120 kV. The results have shown that the MOSkin response was linear with doses in the CT range and reproducible (98.52%). The sensitivity for a single MOSkin in mV/cGy was as follows: 9.208, 7.691 and 6.723 for the RQT 8, RQT 9 and RQT 10 beams qualities respectively. The energy dependence varied up to a factor of ±1.19 among those energies and angular dependence was not greater than 7.78% within the angle range from 0 to 90 degrees. The accumulated dose and the CPMMA, 100 value were 3,97 and 3,79 cGy respectively, which were statistically equivalent within the 95% confidence level. The MOSkin was shown to be a good alternative for CT dose profile measurements and more than adequate to provide accumulated dose assessments for CT procedures.

Keywords: MOSFET, computed tomography dosimetry, MOSkin, semiconductor dosimetry

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8 Predictors of Motor and Cognitive Domains of Functional Performance after Rehabilitation of Individuals with Acute Stroke

Authors: J. He, M. Liu, A. F. Jaber, E. Dean, D. Sabata, J. Radel

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Background: Stroke is a serious health care concern and a major cause of disability in the United States. This condition impacts the individual’s functional ability to perform daily activities. Predicting functional performance of people with stroke assists health care professionals in optimizing the delivery of health services to the affected individuals. The purpose of this study was to identify significant predictors of Motor FIM and of Cognitive FIM subscores among individuals with stroke after discharge from inpatient rehabilitation (typically 4-6 weeks after stroke onset). A second purpose is to explore the relation among personal characteristics, health status, and functional performance of daily activities within 2 weeks of stroke onset. Methods: This study used a retrospective chart review to conduct a secondary analysis of data obtained from the Healthcare Enterprise Repository for Ontological Narration (HERON) database. The HERON database integrates de-identified clinical data from seven different regional sources including hospital electronic medical record systems of the University of Kansas Health System. The initial HERON data extract encompassed 1192 records and the final sample consisted of 207 participants who were mostly white (74%) males (55%) with a diagnosis of ischemic stroke (77%). The outcome measures collected from HERON included performance scores on the National Institute of Health Stroke Scale (NIHSS), the Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS), and the Functional Independence Measure (FIM). The data analysis plan included descriptive statistics, Pearson correlation analysis, and Stepwise regression analysis. Results: significant predictors of discharge Motor FIM subscores included age, baseline Motor FIM subscores, discharge NIHSS scores, and comorbid electrolyte disorder (R2 = 0.57, p <0.026). Significant predictors of discharge Cognitive FIM subscores were age, baseline cognitive FIM subscores, client cooperative behavior, comorbid obesity, and the total number of comorbidities (R2 = 0.67, p <0.020). Functional performance on admission was significantly associated with age (p < 0.01), stroke severity (p < 0.01), and length of hospital stay (p < 0.05). Conclusions: our findings show that younger age, good motor and cognitive abilities on admission, mild stroke severity, fewer comorbidities, and positive client attitude all predict favorable functional outcomes after inpatient stroke rehabilitation. This study provides health care professionals with evidence to evaluate predictors of favorable functional outcomes early at stroke rehabilitation, to tailor individualized interventions based on their client’s anticipated prognosis, and to educate clients about the benefits of making lifestyle changes to improve their anticipated rate of functional recovery.

Keywords: Recovery, Stroke, predictors, functional performance

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7 A Sustainable Training and Feedback Model for Developing the Teaching Capabilities of Sessional Academic Staff

Authors: Nirmani Wijenayake, Louise Lutze-Mann, Lucy Jo, John Wilson, Vivian Yeung, Dean Lovett, Kim Snepvangers

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Sessional academic staff at universities have the most influence and impact on student learning, engagement, and experience as they have the most direct contact with undergraduate students. A blended technology-enhanced program was created for the development and support of sessional staff to ensure adequate training is provided to deliver quality educational outcomes for the students. This program combines innovative mixed media educational modules, a peer-driven support forum, and face-to-face workshops to provide a comprehensive training and support package for staff. Additionally, the program encourages the development of learning communities and peer mentoring among the sessional staff to enhance their support system. In 2018, the program was piloted on 100 sessional staff in the School of Biotechnology and Biomolecular Sciences to evaluate the effectiveness of this model. As part of the program, rotoscope animations were developed to showcase ‘typical’ interactions between staff and students. These were designed around communication, confidence building, consistency in grading, feedback, diversity awareness, and mental health and wellbeing. When surveyed, 86% of sessional staff found these animations to be helpful in their teaching. An online platform (Moodle) was set up to disseminate educational resources and teaching tips, to host a discussion forum for peer-to-peer communication and to increase critical thinking and problem-solving skills through scenario-based lessons. The learning analytics from these lessons were essential in identifying difficulties faced by sessional staff to further develop supporting workshops to improve outcomes related to teaching. The face-to-face professional development workshops were run by expert guest speakers on topics such as cultural diversity, stress and anxiety, LGBTIQ and student engagement. All the attendees of the workshops found them to be useful and 88% said they felt these workshops increase interaction with their peers and built a sense of community. The final component of the program was to use an adaptive e-learning platform to gather feedback from the students on sessional staff teaching twice during the semester. The initial feedback provides sessional staff with enough time to reflect on their teaching and adjust their performance if necessary, to improve the student experience. The feedback from students and the sessional staff on this model has been extremely positive. The training equips the sessional staff with knowledge and insights which can provide students with an exceptional learning environment. This program is designed in a flexible and scalable manner so that other faculties or institutions could adapt components for their own training. It is anticipated that the training and support would help to build the next generation of educators who will directly impact the educational experience of students.

Keywords: Professional Development, Implementing Effective Strategies, Designing Effective Instruction, enhancing student learning

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6 The Messy and Irregular Experience of Entrepreneurial Life

Authors: Hannah Dean

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The growth ideology, and its association with progress, is an important construct in the narrative of modernity. This ideology is embedded in neoclassical economic growth theory which conceptualises growth as linear and predictable, and the entrepreneur as a rational economic manager. This conceptualisation has been critiqued for reinforcing the managerial discourse in entrepreneurship studies. Despite these critiques, both the neoclassical growth theory and its adjacent managerial discourse dominate entrepreneurship studies notably the literature on female entrepreneurs. The latter is the focus of this paper. Given this emphasis on growth, female entrepreneurs are portrayed as problematic because their growth lags behind their male counterparts. This image which ignores the complexity and diversity of female entrepreneurs’ experience persists in the literature due to the lack of studies that analyse the process and contextual factors surrounding female entrepreneurs’ experience. This study aims to address the subordination of female entrepreneurs by questioning the hegemonic logic of economic growth and the managerial discourse as a true representation for the entrepreneurial experience. This objective is achieved by drawing on Schumpeter’s theorising and narrative inquiry. This exploratory study undertakes in depth interviews to gain insights into female entrepreneurs’ experience and the impact of the economic growth model and the managerial discourse on their performance. The narratives challenge a number of assumptions about female entrepreneurs. The participants occupied senior positions in the corporate world before setting up their businesses. This is at odds with much writing which assumes that women underperform because they leave their career without gaining managerial experience to achieve work-life balance. In line with Schumpeter, who distinguishes the entrepreneur from the manager, the participants’ main function was innovation. They did not believe that the managerial paradigm governing their corporate careers was applicable to their entrepreneurial experience. Formal planning and managerial rationality can hinder their decision making process. The narratives point to the gap between the two worlds which makes stepping into entrepreneurship a scary move. Schumpeter argues that the entrepreneurial process is evolutionary and that failure is an integral part of it. The participants’ entrepreneurial process was in fact irregular. The performance of new combinations was not always predictable. They therefore relied on their initiative. The inhibition to deploy these traits had an adverse effect on business growth. The narratives also indicate that over-reliance on growth threaten the business survival as it faces competing pressures. The study offers theoretical and empirical contributions to (female) entrepreneurship studies by presenting Schumpeter’s theorising as an alternative theoretical framework to the neoclassical economic growth theory. The study also reduces entrepreneurs’ vulnerability by making them aware of the negative influence that the linear growth model and the managerial discourse hold upon their performance. The study has implications for policy makers as it generates new knowledge that incorporates the current social and economic changes in the context of entrepreneurs that can no longer be sustained by the linear growth models especially in the current economic climate.

Keywords: Economic growth, Female Entrepreneurs, managerial discourse, Schumpeter

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