Commenced in January 2007
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Edition: International
Paper Count: 2337

Search results for: differential item functioning

2337 The Analysis of Differential Item and Test Functioning between Sexes by Studying on the Scholastic Aptitude Test 2013

Authors: Panwasn Mahalawalert

Abstract:

The purposes of this research were analyzed differential item functioning and differential test functioning of SWUSAT aptitude test classification by sex variable. The data used in this research is the secondary data from Srinakharinwirot University Scholastic Aptitude Test 2013 (SWUSAT). SWUSAT test consists of four subjects. There are verbal ability test, number ability test, reasoning ability test and spatial ability test. The data analysis was analyzed in 2 steps. The first step was analyzing descriptive statistics. In the second step were analyzed differential item functioning (DIF) and differential test functioning (DTF) by using the DIFAS program. The research results were as follows: The results of DIF and DTF analysis for all 10 tests in year 2013. Gender was the characteristic that found DIF all 10 tests. The percentage of item number that found DIF is between 6.67% - 60%. There are 5 tests that most of items favors female group and 2 tests that most of items favors male group. There are 3 tests that the number of items favors female group equal favors male group. For Differential test functioning (DTF), there are 8 tests that have small level.

Keywords: aptitude test, differential item functioning, differential test functioning, educational measurement

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2336 An Investigation of Differential Item and Test Functioning of Scholastic Aptitude Test 2011 (SWUSAT 2011)

Authors: Ruangdech Sirikit

Abstract:

The purposes of this study were analyzed differential item functioning and differential test functioning of SWUSAT aptitude test classification by sex variable. The data used in this research is the secondary data from Srinakharinwirot University Scholastic Aptitude Test 2011 (SWUSAT 2011) SWUSAT test consists of four subjects. There are verbal ability test, number ability test, reasoning ability test and spatial ability test. The data analysis was carried out in 2 steps. The first step was analyzing descriptive statistics. In the second step were analyzed differential item functioning (DIF) and differential test functioning (DTF) by using the DIFAS program. The research results were as follows: The results of data analysis for all 10 tests in year 2011. Sex was the characteristic that found DIF all 10 tests. The percentage of item number that found DIF was between 10% - 46.67%. There are 4 tests that most of items favors female group. There are 3 tests that most of items favors male group and there are 3 tests that the number of items favors female group equal favors male group. For Differential test functioning (DTF), there are 8 tests that have small DIF effect variance.

Keywords: differential item functioning, differential test functioning, SWUSAT, aptitude test

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2335 Differential Item Functioning in the Vocabulary Test of Grade 7 Students in Public and Private Schools

Authors: Dave Kenneth Tayao Cayado, Carlo P. Magno

Abstract:

The most common source of bias detected are those of gender and socioeconomic status. The present study investigated the Differential Item Functioning (DIF) or item bias between public and private school students in a vocabulary test. Studies on DIF were expanded by using the type of school as a source of bias. There were 200 participants in this study. 100 came from a public secondary school and 100 came from a private secondary school. The vocabulary skills of students were measured using a standardized vocabulary test for grade 7 students. Using DIF, specifically the Rasch-Welch approach, it was found that out of 24 items, 12 were biased for a specific group. The vocabulary skills on the use of slang, idiomatic expression, personification, collocations, and partitive relations were biased for private schools while the use of slang and homonymous words were biased for public school students. The analysis debunked the trend that private school students are outperforming public school students in terms of academic achievement. It was revealed that there are some competencies that private school students are having difficulty and vice versa.

Keywords: differential item functioning, item bias, public school students, private school students, vocabulary

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2334 Exploring Gender Bias in Self-Report Measures of Psychopathy

Authors: Katie Strong, Brian P. O'Connor, Jacqueline M. Kanippayoor

Abstract:

To date, self-report measures of psychopathy have largely been conceptualized with a male-focused understanding of the disorder, with the presumption that psychopathy expression is uniform across genders. However, generalizing this understanding to the female population may be misleading. The objective of this research was to explore gender differences in the expression of psychopathy and to assess current self-report psychopathy measures for gender bias. It was hypothesized that some items in commonly used measures of psychopathy may show gender bias and that existing measures may not contain enough items that are relevant to the manifestation of psychopathy in women. An exploratory investigation was conducted on statistical bias in common measures of psychopathy, and novel, relevant, but previously neglected items and measures were included in a new data collection. The participant pool included a sample of 403 university students and 354 participants recruited using Amazon Mechanical Turk. Item Response Theory methods - including Differential Item Functioning - were used to assess for the item- and test- level bias across several common self-report measures of psychopathy. Analyses indicated occasional and modest levels of item-level bias, and that some additional female-relevant items merit consideration for inclusion in measures of psychopathy. These findings suggest that current self-report measures of psychopathy may be demonstrating gender-bias and warrant further examination.

Keywords: gender, measurement bias, personality, psychopathy

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2333 Family and Marital Functioning during the Transition to Motherhood

Authors: Fei Wan Ngai

Abstract:

Background: Family and marital functioning has become an important public health issue because it is vital to child development and well-being. Objective: This study was designed to examine the changes in family and marital functioning among Chinese women during the transition to motherhood. Methods: A longitudinal design was used. A convenience sample of 202 Chinese childbearing women completed the Medical Outcomes Study Family and Marital Functioning Measures during pregnancy, at 6 weeks and at 6 months postpartum. Results: The results showed that women experienced substantial decline in their family and marital functioning from pregnancy to 6 weeks and 6 months postpartum. Conclusions: The findings of this study highlight the need for more attention to family and marital functioning among women after childbirth. Culturally relevant interventions should be developed to assist women in facing the challenges of new motherhood and achieving a better family and marital functioning.

Keywords: family and marital functioning, perinatal period, women

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2332 Frequent Item Set Mining for Big Data Using MapReduce Framework

Authors: Tamanna Jethava, Rahul Joshi

Abstract:

Frequent Item sets play an essential role in many data Mining tasks that try to find interesting patterns from the database. Typically it refers to a set of items that frequently appear together in transaction dataset. There are several mining algorithm being used for frequent item set mining, yet most do not scale to the type of data we presented with today, so called “BIG DATA”. Big Data is a collection of large data sets. Our approach is to work on the frequent item set mining over the large dataset with scalable and speedy way. Big Data basically works with Map Reduce along with HDFS is used to find out frequent item sets from Big Data on large cluster. This paper focuses on using pre-processing & mining algorithm as hybrid approach for big data over Hadoop platform.

Keywords: frequent item set mining, big data, Hadoop, MapReduce

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2331 A Cross-Cultural Investigation of Self-Compassion in Adolescents Across Gender

Authors: H. N. Cheung

Abstract:

Self-compassion encourages one to accept oneself, reduce self-criticism and self-judgment, and see one’s shortcomings and setbacks in a balanced view. Adolescent self-compassion is a crucial protective factor against mental illness. It is, however, affected by gender. Given the scarcity of self-compassion scales for adolescents, the current study evaluates the Self-Compassion Scale for Youth (SCS-Y) in a large cross-cultural sample and investigates how the subscales of SCS-Y relate to the dimensions of depressive symptoms across gender. Through the internet-based Qualtrics, a total of 2881 teenagers aged 12 to 18 years were recruited from Hong Kong (HK), China, and the United Kingdom. A Multiple Indicator Multiple Cause (MIMIC) model was used to evaluate measurement invariance of the SCS-Y, and differential item functioning (DIF) was checked across gender. Upon the establishment of the best model, a multigroup structural equation model (SEM) was built between factors of SCS-Y and Multidimensional depression assessment scale (MDAS) which assesses four dimensions of depressive symptoms (emotional, cognitive, somatic and interpersonal). The SCS-Y was shown to have good reliability and validity. The MIMIC model produced a good model fit for a hypothetical six-factor model (CFI = 0.980; TLI = 0.974; RMSEA = 0.038) and no item was flagged for DIF across gender. A gender difference was observed between SCS-Y factors and depression dimensions. Conclusions: The SCS-Y exhibits good psychometric characteristics, including measurement invariance across gender. The study also highlights the gender difference between self-compassion factors and depression dimensions.

Keywords: self compassion, gender, depression, structural equation modelling, MIMIC model

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2330 Noncommutative Differential Structure on Finite Groups

Authors: Ibtisam Masmali, Edwin Beggs

Abstract:

In this paper, we take example of differential calculi, on the finite group A4. Then, we apply methods of non-commutative of non-commutative differential geometry to this example, and see how similar the results are to those of classical differential geometry.

Keywords: differential calculi, finite group A4, Christoffel symbols, covariant derivative, torsion compatible

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2329 The Effectiveness of Video Modeling Procedures on Request an Item Behavior Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders

Authors: Melih Cattik

Abstract:

The present study investigate effectiveness of video modeling procedures on request an item behavior of children with ASD. Two male and a female children with ASD participated in the study. A multiple baseline across participant single-subject design was used to evaluate the effects of the video modeling procedures on request an item behavior. During baseline, no prompts were presented to participants. In the intervention phase, the teacher gave video model to the participant and than created opportunity for request an item to him/her. When the first participant reached to criterion, the second participant began intervention. This procedure continued till all participants completed intervention. Finally, all three participants learned to request an item behavior. Based upon findings of this study, it will make suggestions to future researches.

Keywords: autism spectrum disorders, video modeling procedures, request an item behavior, single subject design

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2328 Development of Extended Trapezoidal Method for Numerical Solution of Volterra Integro-Differential Equations

Authors: Fuziyah Ishak, Siti Norazura Ahmad

Abstract:

Volterra integro-differential equations appear in many models for real life phenomena. Since analytical solutions for this type of differential equations are hard and at times impossible to attain, engineers and scientists resort to numerical solutions that can be made as accurately as possible. Conventionally, numerical methods for ordinary differential equations are adapted to solve Volterra integro-differential equations. In this paper, numerical solution for solving Volterra integro-differential equation using extended trapezoidal method is described. Formulae for the integral and differential parts of the equation are presented. Numerical results show that the extended method is suitable for solving first order Volterra integro-differential equations.

Keywords: accuracy, extended trapezoidal method, numerical solution, Volterra integro-differential equations

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2327 Examining the Relationship between Family Functioning and Perceived Self-Efficacy

Authors: Fenni Sim

Abstract:

Objectives: The purpose of the study is to examine the relationship between family functioning and level of self-efficacy: how family functioning can potentially affect self-efficacy which will eventually lead to better clinical outcomes. The hypothesis was ‘Patients on haemodialysis with perceived higher family functioning are more likely to have higher perceived level of self-efficacy’. Methods: The study was conducted with a mixed methodology of quantitative and qualitative data collection of survey and semi-structured interview respectively. The General Self-Efficacy scale and SCORE-15 were self-administered by participants. The data will be analysed with correlation analysis method using Microsoft Excel. 79 patients were recruited for the study through random sampling. 6 participants whose results did not reflect the hypothesis were then recruited for the qualitative study. Interpretive phemenological analysis was then used to analyse the qualitative data. Findings: The hypothesis was accepted that higher family functioning leads to higher perceived self-efficacy. The correlation coefficient of -0.21 suggested a mild correlation between the two variables. However, only 4.6% of the variation in perceived self-efficacy is accounted by the variation in family functioning. The qualitative study extrapolated three themes that might explain the variations in the outliers: (1) level of physical functioning affects perceived self-efficacy, (2) instrumental support from family influenced perceived level of family functioning, and self-efficacy, (3) acceptance of illness reflects higher level of self-efficacy. Conclusion: While family functioning does have an impact on perceived self-efficacy, there are many intrapersonal and physical factors that may affect self-efficacy. The concepts of family functioning and self-efficacy are more appropriately seen as complementing each other to help a patient in managing his illness. Healthcare social workers can look at how family functioning is supporting the individual needs of patients with different trajectory of ESRD and the support we can provide to improve one’s self-efficacy.

Keywords: chronic kidney disease, coping of illness, family functioning, self efficacy

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2326 The Moderation Effect of Critical Item on the Strategic Purchasing: Quality Performance Relationship

Authors: Kwong Yeung

Abstract:

Theories about strategic purchasing and quality performance are underdeveloped. Understanding the evolving role of purchasing from reactive to proactive is a pressing strategic issue. Using survey responses from 176 manufacturing and electronics industry professionals, we study the relationships between strategic purchasing and supply chain partners’ quality performance to answer the following questions: Can transaction cost economics be used to elucidate the strategic purchasing-quality performance relationship? Is this strategic purchasing-quality performance relationship moderated by critical item analysis? The findings indicate that critical item analysis positively and significantly moderates the strategic purchasing-quality performance relationship.

Keywords: critical item analysis, moderation, quality performance, strategic purchasing, transaction cost economics

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2325 Item-Trait Pattern Recognition of Replenished Items in Multidimensional Computerized Adaptive Testing

Authors: Jianan Sun, Ziwen Ye

Abstract:

Multidimensional computerized adaptive testing (MCAT) is a popular research topic in psychometrics. It is important for practitioners to clearly know the item-trait patterns of administered items when a test like MCAT is operated. Item-trait pattern recognition refers to detecting which latent traits in a psychological test are measured by each of the specified items. If the item-trait patterns of the replenished items in MCAT item pool are well detected, the interpretability of the items can be improved, which can further promote the abilities of the examinees who attending the MCAT to be accurately estimated. This research explores to solve the item-trait pattern recognition problem of the replenished items in MCAT item pool from the perspective of statistical variable selection. The popular multidimensional item response theory model, multidimensional two-parameter logistic model, is assumed to fit the response data of MCAT. The proposed method uses the least absolute shrinkage and selection operator (LASSO) to detect item-trait patterns of replenished items based on the essential information of item responses and ability estimates of examinees collected from a designed MCAT procedure. Several advantages of the proposed method are outlined. First, the proposed method does not strictly depend on the relative order between the replenished items and the selected operational items, so it allows the replenished items to be mixed into the operational items in reasonable order such as considering content constraints or other test requirements. Second, the LASSO used in this research improves the interpretability of the multidimensional replenished items in MCAT. Third, the proposed method can exert the advantage of shrinkage method idea for variable selection, so it can help to check item quality and key dimension features of replenished items and saves more costs of time and labors in response data collection than traditional factor analysis method. Moreover, the proposed method makes sure the dimensions of replenished items are recognized to be consistent with the dimensions of operational items in MCAT item pool. Simulation studies are conducted to investigate the performance of the proposed method under different conditions for varying dimensionality of item pool, latent trait correlation, item discrimination, test lengths and item selection criteria in MCAT. Results show that the proposed method can accurately detect the item-trait patterns of the replenished items in the two-dimensional and the three-dimensional item pool. Selecting enough operational items from the item pool consisting of high discriminating items by Bayesian A-optimality in MCAT can improve the recognition accuracy of item-trait patterns of replenished items for the proposed method. The pattern recognition accuracy for the conditions with correlated traits is better than those with independent traits especially for the item pool consisting of comparatively low discriminating items. To sum up, the proposed data-driven method based on the LASSO can accurately and efficiently detect the item-trait patterns of replenished items in MCAT.

Keywords: item-trait pattern recognition, least absolute shrinkage and selection operator, multidimensional computerized adaptive testing, variable selection

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2324 Existence Result of Third Order Functional Random Integro-Differential Inclusion

Authors: D. S. Palimkar

Abstract:

The FRIGDI (functional random integrodifferential inclusion) seems to be new and includes several known random differential inclusions already studied in the literature as special cases have been discussed in the literature for various aspects of the solutions. In this paper, we prove the existence result for FIGDI under the non-convex case of multi-valued function involved in it.Using random fixed point theorem of B. C. Dhage and caratheodory condition. This result is new to the theory of differential inclusion.

Keywords: caratheodory condition, random differential inclusion, random solution, integro-differential inclusion

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2323 Item Response Calibration/Estimation: An Approach to Adaptive E-Learning System Development

Authors: Adeniran Adetunji, Babalola M. Florence, Akande Ademola

Abstract:

In this paper, we made an overview on the concept of adaptive e-Learning system, enumerates the elements of adaptive learning concepts e.g. A pedagogical framework, multiple learning strategies and pathways, continuous monitoring and feedback on student performance, statistical inference to reach final learning strategy that works for an individual learner by “mass-customization”. Briefly highlights the motivation of this new system proposed for effective learning teaching. E-Review literature on the concept of adaptive e-learning system and emphasises on the Item Response Calibration, which is an important approach to developing an adaptive e-Learning system. This paper write-up is concluded on the justification of item response calibration/estimation towards designing a successful and effective adaptive e-Learning system.

Keywords: adaptive e-learning system, pedagogical framework, item response, computer applications

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2322 A Study of the Disorders of Sexual Functioning in Women with Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus in a Tertiary Care Hospital in India

Authors: Mehak Nagpal, T. S. Sathyanarayan Rao

Abstract:

Background: Sexual functioning is a neglected aspect of health in women with diabetes, though it contributes greatly towards quality of life and feeling of wellbeing. Also women with DM are at higher risk than men of developing sexual dysfunction and depression. Materials and Methods: Cross-sectional comparison study. Sample size: 100 previously diagnosed type 2DM patients attending Outpatient Diabetic Clinic at Medicine department JSS Hospital Mysore; aged 20-65 years and 60 normal healthy female subjects for Control group. Data was collected with ethical approval over a period of 2 years. Tools Used: 1) Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HAMD – 17 item) 2) Female Sexual Functioning Index (FSFI) 3) Arizona Sexual Experience Scale (ASEX-F) for female-for screening. 4) The Appraisal of Diabetes Scale (ADS). Results: Statistically significant differences were observed in prevalence rate and severity of depression between diabetic group (45% vs 11% syndromal depression) and controls. Depression scores correlated significantly with glycaemic control, adherence to treatment, BMI and the cognitive appraisal of diabetes. There was significantly greater impairment in the sexual functioning of women with type 2 diabetes mellitus as compared to controls; both prevalence (62% vs 38.3%) and severity (p value < 0.01). Arousal (74.2% vs 53.3%), Desire (76.3% vs 50%) and Satisfaction (76.7% vs 63.7%) were most affected and 64.5% were affected in 2 or more domains. A negative illness appraisal on ADS correlated significantly with poor glycaemic control, higher rates of depression and also more severe female sexual dysfunction (p value < 0.05). Conclusion: Diabetes specific factors that correlated significantly with FSD in this study included the psychological appraisal of diabetes, duration of diabetes, presence of complications and BMI.

Keywords: depression, female sexual dysfunction, India, type 2 diabetes mellitus

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2321 Integral Image-Based Differential Filters

Authors: Kohei Inoue, Kenji Hara, Kiichi Urahama

Abstract:

We describe a relationship between integral images and differential images. First, we derive a simple difference filter from conventional integral image. In the derivation, we show that an integral image and the corresponding differential image are related to each other by simultaneous linear equations, where the numbers of unknowns and equations are the same, and therefore, we can execute the integration and differentiation by solving the simultaneous equations. We applied the relationship to an image fusion problem, and experimentally verified the effectiveness of the proposed method.

Keywords: integral images, differential images, differential filters, image fusion

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2320 On the Relation between λ-Symmetries and μ-Symmetries of Partial Differential Equations

Authors: Teoman Ozer, Ozlem Orhan

Abstract:

This study deals with symmetry group properties and conservation laws of partial differential equations. We give a geometrical interpretation of notion of μ-prolongations of vector fields and of the related concept of μ-symmetry for partial differential equations. We show that these are in providing symmetry reduction of partial differential equations and systems and invariant solutions.

Keywords: λ-symmetry, μ-symmetry, classification, invariant solution

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2319 Perceived Family Functioning 12 Months after the COVID-19 Outbreak Has Been Declared a Global Pandemic

Authors: Snezana Svetozarevic

Abstract:

The aim of the research was to determine whether there were significant changes in perceptions of family functioning by families in Serbia 12 months after the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak has been declared a global pandemic. Above all, what has protected families in the face of the global crisis caused by COVID-19. The Self-Report Family Inventory, II version (SFI-II; Beavers and Hampson, 2013) and the Inventory of Family Protective Factors (IFPF; Gardner et al., 2008) were used to assess family functioning and protective factors. Currently, families perceive their functioning as more problematic regarding family emotional expressiveness, conflict, cohesion, and global family health/competence. Adaptive appraisal based on positive coping experiences significantly predicted values on emotional expressiveness, conflict, leadership, and global family health/competence dimensions -a higher prevalence of this factor was associated with more optimal family functioning and fewer problems. The growing problem in family functioning with the beginning of the pandemic is inevitable. However, our research confirmed that it is not enough to take into account what families do to survive. It is equally important to learn about what they do to thrive i.e., to study the family resilience.

Keywords: family, coping, resilience, pandemic, COVID-19

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2318 Reduced Differential Transform Methods for Solving the Fractional Diffusion Equations

Authors: Yildiray Keskin, Omer Acan, Murat Akkus

Abstract:

In this paper, the solution of fractional diffusion equations is presented by means of the reduced differential transform method. Fractional partial differential equations have special importance in engineering and sciences. Application of reduced differential transform method to this problem shows the rapid convergence of the sequence constructed by this method to the exact solution. The numerical results show that the approach is easy to implement and accurate when applied to fractional diffusion equations. The method introduces a promising tool for solving many fractional partial differential equations.

Keywords: fractional diffusion equations, Caputo fractional derivative, reduced differential transform method, partial

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2317 The Importance of Functioning and Disability Status Follow-Up in People with Multiple Sclerosis

Authors: Sanela Slavkovic, Congor Nad, Spela Golubovic

Abstract:

Background: The diagnosis of multiple sclerosis (MS) is a major life challenge and has repercussions on all aspects of the daily functioning of those attained by it – personal activities, social participation, and quality of life. Regular follow-up of only the neurological status is not informative enough so that it could provide data on the sort of support and rehabilitation that is required. Objective: The aim of this study was to establish the current level of functioning of persons attained by MS and the factors that influence it. Methods: The study was conducted in Serbia, on a sample of 108 persons with relapse-remitting form of MS, aged 20 to 53 (mean 39.86 years; SD 8.20 years). All participants were fully ambulatory. Methods applied in the study include Expanded Disability Status Scale-EDSS and World Health Organization Disability Assessment Schedule, WHODAS 2.0 (36-item version, self-administered). Results: Participants were found to experience the most problems in the domains of Participation, Mobility, Life activities and Cognition. The least difficulties were found in the domain of Self-care. Symptom duration was the only control variable with a significant partial contribution to the prediction of the WHODAS scale score (β=0.30, p < 0.05). The total EDSS score correlated with the total WHODAS 2.0 score (r=0.34, p=0.00). Statistically significant differences in the domain of EDSS 0-5.5 were found within categories (0-1.5; 2-3.5; 4-5.5). The more pronounced a participant’s EDSS score was, although not indicative of large changes in the neurological status, the more apparent the changes in the functional domain, i.e. in all areas covered by WHODAS 2.0. Pyramidal (β=0.34, p < 0.05) and Bowel and bladder (β=0.24, p < 0.05) functional systems were found to have a significant partial contribution to the prediction of the WHODAS score. Conclusion: Measuring functioning and disability is important in the follow-up of persons suffering from MS in order to plan rehabilitation and define areas in which additional support is needed.

Keywords: disability, functionality, multiple sclerosis, rehabilitation

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2316 Nonhomogeneous Linear Second Order Differential Equations and Resonance through Geogebra Program

Authors: F. Maass, P. Martin, J. Olivares

Abstract:

The aim of this work is the application of the program GeoGebra in teaching the study of nonhomogeneous linear second order differential equations with constant coefficients. Different kind of functions or forces will be considered in the right hand side of the differential equations, in particular, the emphasis will be placed in the case of trigonometrical functions producing the resonance phenomena. In order to obtain this, the frequencies of the trigonometrical functions will be changed. Once the resonances appear, these have to be correlationated with the roots of the second order algebraic equation determined by the coefficients of the differential equation. In this way, the physics and engineering students will understand resonance effects and its consequences in the simplest way. A large variety of examples will be shown, using different kind of functions for the nonhomogeneous part of the differential equations.

Keywords: education, geogebra, ordinary differential equations, resonance

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2315 Decisional Regret in Men with Localized Prostate Cancer among Various Treatment Options and the Association with Erectile Functioning and Depressive Symptoms: A Moderation Analysis

Authors: Caren Hilger, Silke Burkert, Friederike Kendel

Abstract:

Men with localized prostate cancer (PCa) have to choose among different treatment options, such as active surveillance (AS) and radical prostatectomy (RP). All available treatment options may be accompanied by specific psychological or physiological side effects. Depending on the nature and extent of these side effects, patients are more or less likely to be satisfied or to struggle with their treatment decision in the long term. Therefore, the aim of this study was to assess and explain decisional regret in men with localized PCa. The role of erectile functioning as one of the main physiological side effects of invasive PCa treatment, depressive symptoms as a common psychological side effect, and the association of erectile functioning and depressive symptoms with decisional regret were investigated. Men with localized PCa initially managed with AS or RP (N=292) were matched according to length of therapy (mean 47.9±15.4 months). Subjects completed mailed questionnaires assessing decisional regret, changes in erectile functioning, depressive symptoms, and sociodemographic variables. Clinical data were obtained from case report forms. Differences among the two treatment groups (AS and RP) were calculated using t-tests and χ²-tests, relationships of decisional regret with erectile functioning and depressive symptoms were computed using multiple regression. Men were on average 70±7.2 years old. The two treatment groups differed markedly regarding decisional regret (p<.001, d=.50), changes in erectile functioning (p<.001, d=1.2), and depressive symptoms (p=.01, d=.30), with men after RP reporting higher values, respectively. Regression analyses showed that after adjustment for age, tumor risk category, and changes in erectile functioning, depressive symptoms were still significantly associated with decisional regret (B=0.52, p<.001). Additionally, when predicting decisional regret, the interaction of changes in erectile functioning and depressive symptoms reached significance for men after RP (B=0.52, p<.001), but not for men under AS (B=-0.16, p=.14). With increased changes in erectile functioning, the association of depressive symptoms with decisional regret became stronger in men after RP. Decisional regret is a phenomenon more prominent in men after RP than in men under AS. Erectile functioning and depressive symptoms interact in their prediction of decisional regret. Screening and treating depressive symptoms might constitute a starting point for interventions aiming to reduce decisional regret in this target group.

Keywords: active surveillance, decisional regret, depressive symptoms, erectile functioning, prostate cancer, radical prostatectomy

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2314 Weak Solutions Of Stochastic Fractional Differential Equations

Authors: Lev Idels, Arcady Ponosov

Abstract:

Stochastic fractional differential equations have recently attracted considerable attention, as they have been used to model real-world processes, which are subject to natural memory effects and measurement uncertainties. Compared to conventional hereditary differential equations, one of the advantages of fractional differential equations is related to more realistic geometric properties of their trajectories that do not intersect in the phase space. In this report, a Peano-like existence theorem for nonlinear stochastic fractional differential equations is proven under very general hypotheses. Several specific classes of equations are checked to satisfy these hypotheses, including delay equations driven by the fractional Brownian motion, stochastic fractional neutral equations and many others.

Keywords: delay equations, operator methods, stochastic noise, weak solutions

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2313 Efficient Recommendation System for Frequent and High Utility Itemsets over Incremental Datasets

Authors: J. K. Kavitha, D. Manjula, U. Kanimozhi

Abstract:

Mining frequent and high utility item sets have gained much significance in the recent years. When the data arrives sporadically, incremental and interactive rule mining and utility mining approaches can be adopted to handle user’s dynamic environmental needs and avoid redundancies, using previous data structures, and mining results. The dependence on recommendation systems has exponentially risen since the advent of search engines. This paper proposes a model for building a recommendation system that suggests frequent and high utility item sets over dynamic datasets for a cluster based location prediction strategy to predict user’s trajectories using the Efficient Incremental Rule Mining (EIRM) algorithm and the Fast Update Utility Pattern Tree (FUUP) algorithm. Through comprehensive evaluations by experiments, this scheme has shown to deliver excellent performance.

Keywords: data sets, recommendation system, utility item sets, frequent item sets mining

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2312 Validity and Reliability of Competency Assessment Implementation (CAI) Instrument Using Rasch Model

Authors: Nurfirdawati Muhamad Hanafi, Azmanirah Ab Rahman, Marina Ibrahim Mukhtar, Jamil Ahmad, Sarebah Warman

Abstract:

This study was conducted to generate empirical evidence on validity and reliability of the item of Competency Assessment Implementation (CAI) Instrument using Rasch Model for polythomous data aided by Winstep software version 3.68. The construct validity was examined by analyzing the point-measure correlation index (PTMEA), in fit and outfit MNSQ values; meanwhile the reliability was examined by analyzing item reliability index. A survey technique was used as the major method with the CAI instrument on 156 teachers from vocational schools. The results have shown that the reliability of CAI Instrument items were between 0.80 and 0.98. PTMEA Correlation is in positive values, in which the item is able to distinguish between the ability of the respondent. Statistical data obtained shows that out of 154 items, 12 items from the instrument suggested to be omitted. This study is hoped could bring a new direction to the process of data analysis in educational research.

Keywords: competency assessment, reliability, validity, item analysis

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2311 Generalization of Tau Approximant and Error Estimate of Integral Form of Tau Methods for Some Class of Ordinary Differential Equations

Authors: A. I. Ma’ali, R. B. Adeniyi, A. Y. Badeggi, U. Mohammed

Abstract:

An error estimation of the integrated formulation of the Lanczos tau method for some class of ordinary differential equations was reported. This paper is concern with the generalization of tau approximants and their corresponding error estimates for some class of ordinary differential equations (ODEs) characterized by m + s =3 (i.e for m =1, s=2; m=2, s=1; and m=3, s=0) where m and s are the order of differential equations and number of overdetermination, respectively. The general result obtained were validated with some numerical examples.

Keywords: approximant, error estimate, tau method, overdetermination

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2310 Using Eye-Tracking to Investigate TEM Validity and Design

Authors: Cao Xi

Abstract:

This paper reports a study which used eye-tracking to examine the cognitive validity of TEM 8(Test for English Majors, Band 8). The study investigated test takers' reading patterns on four -item types using eye-tracking, and interviews. Thirty participants completed 22 items on a computer, with the Tobii X2 Eye Tracker recording their eye movements on screen. Eleven students further participated in a recall interview while viewing video footage of their gaze patterns on the test. The findings will indicate that first, different reading item types will employ different cognitive processes; then different reading patterns for stronger and weaker test takers’on each item types. The implication of this study is to provide recommendations for the use of eye tracking technology in language research.

Keywords: eye tracking, reading patterns, test for english majors, cognitive validity

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2309 An Equivalence between a Harmonic Form and a Closed Co-Closed Differential Form in L^Q and Non-L^Q Spaces

Authors: Lina Wu, Ye Li

Abstract:

An equivalent relation between a harmonic form and a closed co-closed form is established on a complete non-compact manifold. This equivalence has been generalized for a differential k-form ω from Lq spaces to non-Lq spaces when q=2 in the context of p-balanced growth where p=2. Especially for a simple differential k-form on a complete non-compact manifold, the equivalent relation has been verified with the extended scope of q for from finite q-energy in Lq spaces to infinite q-energy in non-Lq spaces when with 2-balanced growth. Generalized Hadamard Theorem, Cauchy-Schwarz Inequality, and Calculus skills including Integration by Parts as well as Convergent Series have been applied as estimation techniques to evaluate growth rates for a differential form. In particular, energy growth rates as indicated by an appropriate power range in a selected test function lead to a balance between a harmonic differential form and a closed co-closed differential form. Research ideas and computational methods in this paper could provide an innovative way in the study of broadening Lq spaces to non-Lq spaces with a wide variety of infinite energy growth for a differential form.

Keywords: closed forms, co-closed forms, harmonic forms, L^q spaces, p-balanced growth, simple differential k-forms

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2308 On Stability of Stochastic Differential Equations with Non Trivial Solutions

Authors: Fakhreddin Abedi, Wah June Leong

Abstract:

Exponential stability of stochastic differential equations with non-trivial solutions is provided in terms of Lyapunov functions. The main result of this paper establishes that, under certain hypotheses for the dynamics f (.) and g(.), practical exponential stability in probability at the small neighborhood of the origin is equivalent to the existence of an appropriate Lyapunov function. Indeed, we establish exponential stability of stochastic differential equations when almost all the state trajectories are bounded and approach a sufficiently small neighborhood of the origin. We derive sufficient conditions for the exponential stability of stochastic differential equations. Finally, we give a numerical example illustrating our results.

Keywords: exponential stability in probability, stochastic differential equations, Lyapunov technique, Ito’s formula

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