Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 4217

Search results for: sociocultural context

4217 Sociocultural Barriers to the Development of Autonomous Foreign Language Learning: Some Teaching Strategies to Overcome Such Challenges in a Mexican Context

Authors: Zaideth Zobeida Ponce Alonso, Laura Emilia Fierro Lopez, Maria del Rocio Dominguez Gaona


The present study is part of the Master in Modern Languages at the Universidad Autónoma de Baja California, and it aims to analyze how the sociocultural background might influence the development of learner autonomy in foreign language education in order to propose some strategies to overcome such challenges. Given the lack of research on the sociocultural barriers in learner autonomy in a Mexican context and the need to hear teachers’ voices about this issue, qualitative data was obtained from semi-structured interviews with six language teachers on their perspectives on learner autonomy, its application to the language classroom, and their experiences with Mexican and foreign learners/contexts in order to find out differences regarding learner autonomy. The results suggest three main sociocultural characteristics: preference for an authority figure, tendency towards collectivism, and low tolerance of ambiguity. Finally, nine strategies were proposed in order to help language teachers to deal with such sociocultural characteristics when fostering learner autonomy in the border city of Mexicali, where this study was carried out.

Keywords: learner autonomy, Mexican context, sociocultural influence, teachers' perspectives, teaching strategies

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4216 A Sociocultural View of Ethnicity of Parents and Children's Language Learning

Authors: Thapanee Musiget


Ethnic minority children’s language learning is believed that it can be developed through school system. However, many cases prove that these kids are left to challenge with multicultural context at school and sometimes decreased the ability to acquire new learning. Consequently, it is significant for ethnicity parents to consider that prompting their children at home before their actual school age can eliminate negative outcome of children's language acquisition. This paper discusses the approach of instructional use of parents and children language learning in the context of minority language group in Thailand. By conducting this investigation, secondary source of data was gathered with the purpose to point out some primary methods for parents and children in ethnicity. The process of language learning is based on the sociocultural theory of Vygotsky, which highlights expressive communication among individuals as the best motivating force in human development and learning. The article also highlights the role of parents as they lead the instruction approach. In the discussion part, the role of ethnic minority parents as a language instructor is offered as mediator.

Keywords: ethnic minority, language learning, multicultural context, sociocultural theory

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4215 Sociocultural Context of Pain Management in Oncology and Palliative Nursing Care

Authors: Andrea Zielke-Nadkarni


Pain management is a question of quality of life and an indicator for nursing quality. Chronic pain which is predominant in oncology and palliative nursing situations is perceived today as a multifactorial, individual emotional experience with specific characteristics including the sociocultural dimension when dealing with migrant patients. This dimension of chronic pain is of major importance in professional nursing of migrant patients in hospices or palliative care units. Objectives of the study are: 1. To find out more about the sociocultural views on pain and nursing care, on customs and nursing practices connected with pain of both Turkish Muslim and German Christian women, 2. To improve individual and family oriented nursing practice with view to sociocultural needs of patients in severe pain in palliative care. In a qualitative-explorative comparative study 4 groups of women, Turkish Muslims immigrants (4 from the first generation, 5 from the second generation) and German Christian women of two generations (5 of each age group) of the same age groups as the Turkish women and with similar educational backgrounds were interviewed (semistructured ethnographic interviews using Spradley, 1979) on their perceptions and experiences of pain and nursing care within their families. For both target groups the presentation will demonstrate the following results in detail: Utterance of pain as well as “private” and “public” pain vary within different societies and cultures. Permitted forms of pain utterance are learned in childhood and determine attitudes and expectations in adulthood. Language, especially when metaphors and symbols are used, plays a major role for misunderstandings. The sociocultural context of illness may include specific beliefs that are important to the patients and yet seem more than far-fetched from a biomedical perspective. Pain can be an influential factor in family relationships where respect or hierarchies do not allow the direct utterance of individual needs. Specific resources are often, although not exclusively, linked to religious convictions and are significantly helpful in reducing pain. The discussion will evaluate the results of the study with view to the relevant literature and present nursing interventions and instruments beyond medication that are helpful when dealing with patients from various socio-cultural backgrounds in painful end-oflife situations.

Keywords: pain management, migrants, sociocultural context, palliative care

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4214 Observatory of Sustainability of the Algarve Region for Tourism: Proposal for Environmental and Sociocultural Indicators

Authors: Miguel José Oliveira, Fátima Farinha, Elisa M. J. da Silva, Rui Lança, Manuel Duarte Pinheiro, Cátia Miguel


The Observatory of Sustainability of the Algarve Region for Tourism (OBSERVE) will be a valuable tool to assess the sustainability of this region. The OBSERVE tool is designed to provide data and maintain an up-to-date, consistent set of indicators defined to describe the region on the environmental, sociocultural, economic and institutional domains. This ongoing two-year project has the active participation of the Algarve’s stakeholders, since they were consulted and asked to participate in the discussion for the indicators proposal. The environmental and sociocultural indicators chosen must indicate the characteristics of the region and should be in alignment with other global systems used to monitor the sustainability. This paper presents a review of sustainability indicators systems that support the first proposal for the environmental and sociocultural indicators. Others constraints are discussed, namely the existing data and the data available in digital platforms in a format suitable for automatic importation to the platform of OBSERVE. It is intended that OBSERVE will be a valuable tool to assess the sustainability of the region of Algarve.

Keywords: Algarve, development, environmental indicators, observatory, sociocultural indicators, sustainability, tourism

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4213 Rejoinders to the Expression of Reprimand among Jordanian Youth: A Pragmatic Study

Authors: Nisreen Al-Khawaldeh


The study investigates the expressions voiced by Jordanian youth as rejoinders to the expressions of reprimands. It also explores the impact sociocultural variables exert on such types of rejoinders. To our best knowledge, this study is the first of its kind. Despite the significance and sensitivity of such type of communicative act, there is a scarcity of research on it, and it has not been investigated in the Jordanian context. Data collected from observation of naturally occurring data. Data have been qualitatively and quantitatively analyzed in light of the rapport management approach (RMA). The analysis revealed different types of rejoinders, among which was the expression of apology, admitting responsibility, and trying to manage and fix the situation were the most used strategies. Variation in the types of strategies was attributed to the influence of the sociocultural variables. Promising ideas were recommended for future research.

Keywords: gender, rejoinder to reprimand, Jordanian youth, rapport management approach

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4212 The Sociocultural and Critical Theories under the Empiricism of a Study Abroad Program

Authors: Magda Silva


This paper presents the sociocultural and critical theories used in the creation of a study abroad program in Brazil, as well as the successful results obtained in the fourteen years of experience provided by the program in distinct regions of Brazil. This program maximizes students’ acquisition of the Portuguese language, and affords them an in-depth intercultural and intracultural competence by on site studies in cosmopolitan Rio de Janeiro, afro-heritage Salvador da Bahia, and Amazonian Belém do Pará. The program provides the means to acknowledge the presence, influence, similarities, and differences of Portuguese-speaking Brazil in Latin America.

Keywords: study abroad, critical thinking, sociocultural theory, foreign language, empirical, theoretical

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4211 Sociocultural and Critical Approach for Summer Study Abroad Program in Higher Education

Authors: Magda Silva


This paper presents the empirical and the theoretical principles associated with the Duke in Brazil Summer Program. Using a sociocultural model and critical theory, this study abroad maximizes students’ ability to enrich language competence, intercultural skills, and critical thinking. The fourteen-year implementation of this project demonstrates the global importance of foreign language teaching as the program unfolds into real life scenarios within the cultures of distinct regions of Brazil; Cosmopolitan Rio, in the southeast, and rural Belém, northern Amazon region.

Keywords: study abroad, critical thinking, sociocultural theory, foreign language, empirical, theoretical

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4210 Sociocultural Foundations of Psychological Well-Being among Ethiopian Adults

Authors: Kassahun Tilahun


Most of the studies available on adult psychological well-being have been centered on Western countries. However, psychological well-being does not have the same meaning across the world. The Euro-American and African conceptions and experiences of psychological well-being differ systematically. As a result, questions like, how do people living in developing African countries, like Ethiopia, report their psychological well-being; what would the context-specific prominent determinants of their psychological well-being be, needs a definitive answer. This study was, therefore, aimed at developing a new theory that would address these socio-cultural issues of psychological well-being. Consequently, data were obtained through interview and open ended questionnaire. A total of 438 adults, working in governmental and non-governmental organizations situated in Addis Ababa, participated in the study. Appropriate qualitative method of data analysis, i.e. thematic content analysis, was employed for analyzing the data. The thematic analysis involves a type of abductive analysis, driven both by theoretical interest and the nature of the data. Reliability and credibility issues were addressed appropriately. The finding identified five major categories of themes, which are viewed as essential in determining the conceptions and experiences of psychological well-being of Ethiopian adults. These were; socio-cultural harmony, social cohesion, security, competence and accomplishment, and the self. Detailed discussion on the rational for including these themes was made and appropriate positive psychology interventions were proposed. Researchers are also encouraged to expand this qualitative research and in turn develop a suitable instrument taping the psychological well-being of adults with different sociocultural orientations.

Keywords: sociocultural, psychological, well-being Ethiopia, adults

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4209 Academic and Sociocultural Adaptation Experiences of International Students Studying in Kazakhstan

Authors: Tatyana Kim


This paper seeks to explore the academic and sociocultural adaptation experiences of international students studying in Kazakhstan. Using multiple case study design, the research will be undertaken at two private Kazakhstani universities having a relatively large and diverse body of international students. Thus, 20 full-time undergraduate international students from the sampled universities will be interviewed to identify factors that impede or, vice versa, facilitate their academic and sociocultural adaptation in Kazakhstan, as well as to reveal how universities support these students in the process of their adaptation. To investigate the issue more deeply, it was decided to explore the university administrators’ viewpoint of the issue. Thus, six university administrators who are in charge of recruiting and supporting international students and, thus, are particularly knowledgeable about their experiences, have been recruited for this study. Identification of both students’ and administrators’ perspectives on the matter may help reveal miscommunication, if any, and gain greater insight into the phenomenon. The data will be collected between November 5, 2019, and December 10, 2019. Preliminary findings will be presented at the conference. Lysgaard’s U-curve adjustment theory (1955) will be employed as a guiding framework to discuss and interpret the findings.

Keywords: academic adaptation, adaptation, higher education, international students, sociocultural adaptation

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4208 Developing a South African Model of Neuropsychological Rehabilitation for Adults After Acquired Brain Injury

Authors: Noorjehan Joosub-Vawda


Objectives: The aim of this poster presentation is to examine cultural contextual understandings of ABI that could aid conceptualisation and the development of a model for neuropsychological rehabilitation in this context. Characteristics of the South African context that make the implementation of international NR practices difficult include socioeconomic disparities, sociocultural influences, lack of accessibility to healthcare services, and poverty and unemployment levels. NR services in the developed world have characteristics such as low staff-to-patient ratios and interdisciplinary teams that make them unsuitable for the resource-constrained South African context. Methods: An exploratory, descriptive research design based on programme theory is being followed in the development of a South African model of neuropsychological rehabilitation. Results: The incorporation of African traditional understandings and practices, such as beliefs about ancestral spirits in the etiology of Acquired Brain Injury are relevant to the planning of rehabilitation interventions. Community-Based Rehabilitation workers, psychoeducation, and cooperation among the different systemic levels especially in rural settings is also needed to improve services offered to patients living with ABI. Conclusions. The preliminary model demonstrated in this poster will attempt to build on the strengths of South African communities, incorporating valuable evidence from international models to serve those affected with brain injury in this context.

Keywords: neuropsychological rehabilitation, South Africa, acquired brain injury, developing context

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4207 The Sociocultural Adaptation, Openness, and Success of Sojourn of Foreign Students in Tarlac City, Philippines

Authors: Maria Sheila S. Garcia


A good number of researches indicate that living in another country may create different and unexpected adjustment problems, and foreign students are not exempted from this. To provide an understanding of this process, 30 foreign college students studying English in Tarlac City were asked to answer questionnaires. This is to determine their sociocultural adaptation, openness to the host culture and success of sojourn. Through statistical analysis, it was found that the students experience greater difficulty in the academic area. Moderate difficulty was attributed to everyday life and social interactions. Albeit difficult, what they like best is the school’s methods of teaching English while the areas that need improvement are the libraries and internet connection. The only significant relationship was found between sociocultural adaptation and success of sojourn. Negatively correlated, if students experience greater difficulties in their host country, they are likely to regret their stay and will not recommend it to anyone. Openness to the host culture did not have an effect on the adaptation and success of sojourn. The short period of time that the students have are spent in studying rather than making friends. Nonetheless, this indicates the need to look deeper into the academic, extra-curricular activities and facilities provided by learning institutions.

Keywords: foreign students, sociocultural adaptation, success of sojourn, Tarlac Philippines

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4206 Proposal for a Generic Context Meta-Model

Authors: Jaouadi Imen, Ben Djemaa Raoudha, Ben Abdallah Hanene


The access to relevant information that is adapted to users’ needs, preferences and environment is a challenge in many applications running. That causes an appearance of context-aware systems. To facilitate the development of this class of applications, it is necessary that these applications share a common context meta-model. In this article, we will present our context meta-model that is defined using the OMG Meta Object facility (MOF). This meta-model is based on the analysis and synthesis of context concepts proposed in literature.

Keywords: context, meta-model, MOF, awareness system

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4205 Modeling User Context Using CEAR Diagram

Authors: Ravindra Dastikop, G. S. Thyagaraju, U. P. Kulkarni


Even though the number of context aware applications is increasing day by day along with the users, till today there is no generic programming paradigm for context aware applications. This situation could be remedied by design and developing the appropriate context modeling and programming paradigm for context aware applications. In this paper, we are proposing the static context model and metrics for validating the expressiveness and understandability of the model. The proposed context modeling is a way of describing a situation of user using context entities , attributes and relationships .The model which is an extended and hybrid version of ER model, ontology model and Graphical model is specifically meant for expressing and understanding the user situation in context aware environment. The model is useful for understanding context aware problems, preparing documentation and designing programs and databases. The model makes use of context entity attributes relationship (CEAR) diagram for representation of association between the context entities and attributes. We have identified a new set of graphical notations for improving the expressiveness and understandability of context from the end user perspective .

Keywords: user context, context entity, context entity attributes, situation, sensors, devices, relationships, actors, expressiveness, understandability

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4204 Clinician's Perspective of Common Factors of Change in Family Therapy: A Cross-National Exploration

Authors: Hassan Karimi, Fred Piercy, Ruoxi Chen, Ana L. Jaramillo-Sierra, Wei-Ning Chang, Manjushree Palit, Catherine Martosudarmo, Angelito Antonio


Background: The two psychotherapy camps, the randomized clinical trials (RCTs) and the common factors model, have competitively claimed specific explanations for therapy effectiveness. Recently, scholars called for empirical evidence to show the role of common factors in therapeutic outcome in marriage and family therapy. Purpose: This cross-national study aims to explore how clinicians, across different nations and theoretical orientations, attribute the contribution of common factors to therapy outcome. Method: A brief common factors questionnaire (CFQ-with a Cronbach’s Alpha, 0.77) was developed and administered in seven nations. A series of statistical analyses (paired-samples t-test, independent sample t-test, ANOVA) were conducted: to compare clinicians perceived contribution of total common factors versus model-specific factors, to compare each pair of common factors’ categories, and to compare clinicians from collectivistic nations versus clinicians from individualistic nation. Results: Clinicians across seven nations attributed 86% to common factors versus 14% to model-specific factors. Clinicians attributed 34% of therapeutic change to client’s factors, 26% to therapist’s factors, 26% to relationship factors, and 14% to model-specific techniques. The ANOVA test indicated each of the three categories of common factors (client 34%, therapist 26%, relationship 26%) showed higher contribution in therapeutic outcome than the category of model specific factors (techniques 14%). Clinicians with psychology degree attributed more contribution to model-specific factors than clinicians with MFT and counseling degrees who attributed more contribution to client factors. Clinicians from collectivistic nations attributed larger contributions to therapist’s factors (M=28.96, SD=12.75) than the US clinicians (M=23.22, SD=7.73). The US clinicians attributed a larger contribution to client’s factors (M=39.02, SD=1504) than clinicians from the collectivistic nations (M=28.71, SD=15.74). Conclusion: The findings indicate clinicians across the globe attributed more than two thirds of therapeutic change to CFs, which emphasize the training of the common factors model in the field. CFs, like model-specific factors, vary in their contribution to therapy outcome in relation to specific client, therapist, problem, treatment model, and sociocultural context. Sociocultural expectations and norms should be considered as a context in which both CFs and model-specific factors function toward therapeutic goals. Clinicians need to foster a cultural competency specifically regarding the divergent ways that CFs can be activated due to specific sociocultural values.

Keywords: common factors, model-specific factors, cross-national survey, therapist cultural competency, enhancing therapist efficacy

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4203 The Socio-Cultural Aspect of Food in Ceremonial Turkey

Authors: Suheyla Saritas


No matter who we are or where we live, our lives revolve around food, which is much more than a merely sustenance. As a part of the human culture, food carries complex significance and symbolic meanings. Turkish people attribute great value to food and its usage specifically tied to rites of passages of human life. Traditions, especially the ones practiced during rites of passages, such as birth, circumcisions, weddings and funerals, have always been accompanied by food in Turkish culture. Since food celebrates and symbolizes human progress in life in the culture, it also surrounds by aspects of belief, custom, magic, ritual and religion and has always been used in ceremonial context during such rites. Even though that context may be different depending on the religious, economic and social nuances of the various Turkish regions, like wheat, meat and bread, certain kinds of food play key roles during Turkish rites, generally upholding traditions. This paper highlights the sociocultural aspect of food in the rites of passages in the Turkish culture. The importance of this work also is how the ceremonial food represents the identity of Turkish people.

Keywords: food, culture, rites of passages, ritual and identity

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4202 Children's Literature As Pedagogy: Lessons For Literacy Practice

Authors: Alicia Curtin, Kathy Hall


This paper explores research and practice shared on a masters University module entitled Children's Literature as Pedagogy. Issues explored include the meaning of childhood and literature; the definition of what counts as text, textual and literacy practice for children and adolescents. A sociocultural framework is used to define literacy practice from this perspective and student voice and experience remains central. Lessons from classroom experience and the use of innovative, multi modal and non traditional texts and pedagogical approaches are offered as examples of innovative and inclusive pedagogy in the field of literacy practice.

Keywords: non traditional, pedagogy, practice, sociocultural

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4201 Towards Natively Context-Aware Web Services

Authors: Hajer Taktak, Faouzi Moussa


With the ubiquitous computing’s emergence and the evolution of enterprises’ needs, one of the main challenges is to build context-aware applications based on Web services. These applications have become particularly relevant in the pervasive computing domain. In this paper, we introduce our approach that optimizes the use of Web services with context notions when dealing with contextual environments. We focus particularly on making Web services autonomous and natively context-aware. We implement and evaluate the proposed approach with a pedagogical example of a context-aware Web service treating temperature values. 

Keywords: context-aware, CXF framework, ubiquitous computing, web service

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4200 I Can’t Escape the Scars, Even If I Do Get Better”: A Discourse Analysis of Adolescent Talk About Their Self-Harm During Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy Sessions for Major Depressive Disorder

Authors: Anna Kristen


There has been a pronounced increase in societal discourses around adolescent self-harm, yet there is a paucity of literature examining adolescent talk about self-harm that accounts for the sociocultural context. The objective of this study was to explore how adolescents with Depression talk about their self-harm engagement in consideration of both socio-cultural discourses and the therapy context during Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy (CBT) sessions. Utilizing a sample from the Improving Mood with Psychoanalytic and Cognitive Therapies study, discourse analysis was carried out on audio-recorded CBT sessions. The study established three groupings of results: (a) adolescent positioning as stuck in self-harm engagement; (b) adolescent positioning as ambivalent in the talk about ceasing self-harm; and (c) adolescent use of stigma discourses in self-harm talk & constructions of self-harm scars. These findings indicate that clinician awareness of adolescent use of language and discourse may inform interventions beyond Manualized CBT strategies. These findings are highly relevant in light of research that demonstrates CBT treatment for adolescent depression does not effectively address concurring self-harm and given that self-harm is the most significant risk factor predictive of subsequent suicidal behaviours.

Keywords: adolescence, cognitive-behavioral therapy, discourse, self-harm, stigma

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4199 Collaborative and Context-Aware Learning Approach Using Mobile Technology

Authors: Sameh Baccari, Mahmoud Neji


In recent years, the rapid developments on mobile devices and wireless technologies enable new dimension capabilities for the learning domain. This dimension facilitates people daily activities and shortens the distances between individuals. When these technologies have been used in learning, a new paradigm has been emerged giving birth to mobile learning. Because of the mobility feature, m-learning courses have to be adapted dynamically to the learner’s context. The main challenge in context-aware mobile learning is to develop an approach building the best learning resources according to dynamic learning situations. In this paper, we propose a context-aware mobile learning system called Collaborative and Context-aware Mobile Learning System (CCMLS). It takes into account the requirements of Mobility, Collaboration and Context-Awareness. This system is based on the semantic modeling of the learning context and the learning content. The adaptation part of this approach is made up of adaptation rules to propose and select relevant resources, learning partners and learning activities based not only on the user’s needs, but also on its current context.

Keywords: mobile learning, mobile technologies, context-awareness, collaboration, semantic web, adaptation engine, adaptation strategy, learning object, learning context

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4198 Graph Planning Based Composition for Adaptable Semantic Web Services

Authors: Rihab Ben Lamine, Raoudha Ben Jemaa, Ikram Amous Ben Amor


This paper proposes a graph planning technique for semantic adaptable Web Services composition. First, we use an ontology based context model for extending Web Services descriptions with information about the most suitable context for its use. Then, we transform the composition problem into a semantic context aware graph planning problem to build the optimal service composition based on user's context. The construction of the planning graph is based on semantic context aware Web Service discovery that allows for each step to add most suitable Web Services in terms of semantic compatibility between the services parameters and their context similarity with the user's context. In the backward search step, semantic and contextual similarity scores are used to find best composed Web Services list. Finally, in the ranking step, a score is calculated for each best solution and a set of ranked solutions is returned to the user.

Keywords: semantic web service, web service composition, adaptation, context, graph planning

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4197 A Pragmatic Approach of Memes Created in Relation to the COVID-19 Pandemic

Authors: Alexandra-Monica Toma


Internet memes are an element of computer mediated communication and an important part of online culture that combines text and image in order to generate meaning. This term coined by Richard Dawkings refers to more than a mere way to briefly communicate ideas or emotions, thus naming a complex and an intensely perpetuated phenomenon in the virtual environment. This paper approaches memes as a cultural artefact and a virtual trope that mirrors societal concerns and issues, and analyses the pragmatics of their use. Memes have to be analysed in series, usually relating to some image macros, which is proof of the interplay between imitation and creativity in the memes’ writing process. We believe that their potential to become viral relates to three key elements: adaptation to context, reference to a successful meme series, and humour (jokes, irony, sarcasm), with various pragmatic functions. The study also uses the concept of multimodality and stresses how the memes’ text interacts with the image, discussing three types of relations: symmetry, amplification, and contradiction. Moreover, the paper proves that memes could be employed as speech acts with illocutionary force, when the interaction between text and image is enriched through the connection to a specific situation. The features mentioned above are analysed in a corpus that consists of memes related to the COVID-19 pandemic. This corpus shows them to be highly adaptable to context, which helps build the feeling of connection and belonging in an otherwise tremendously fragmented world. Some of them are created based on well-known image macros, and their humour results from an intricate dialogue between texts and contexts. Memes created in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic can be considered speech acts and are often used as such, as proven in the paper. Consequently, this paper tackles the key features of memes, makes a thorough analysis of the memes sociocultural, linguistic, and situational context, and emphasizes their intertextuality, with special accent on their illocutionary potential.

Keywords: context, memes, multimodality, speech acts

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4196 Working within the Zone of Proximal Development: Does It Help for Reading Strategy?

Authors: Mahmood Dehqan, Peyman Peyvasteh


In recent years there has been a growing interest in issues concerning the impact of sociocultural theory (SCT) of learning on different aspects of second/foreign language learning. This study aimed to find the possible effects of sociocultural teaching techniques on reading strategy of EFL learners. Indeed, the present research compared the impact of peer and teacher scaffolding on EFL learners’ reading strategy use across two proficiency levels. To this end, a pre-test post-test quasi-experimental research design was used and two instruments were utilized to collect the data: Nelson English language test and reading strategy questionnaire. Ninety five university students participated in this study were divided into two groups of teacher and peer scaffolding. Teacher scaffolding group received scaffolded help from the teacher based on three mechanisms of effective help within ZPD: graduated, contingent, dialogic. In contrast, learners of peer scaffolding group were unleashed from the teacher-fronted classroom as they were asked to carry out the reading comprehension tasks with the feedback they provided for each other. Results obtained from ANOVA revealed that teacher scaffolding group outperformed the peer scaffolding group in terms of reading strategy use. It means teacher’s scaffolded help provided within the learners’ ZPD led to better reading strategy improvement compared with the peer scaffolded help. However, the interaction effect between proficiency factor and teaching technique was non-significant, leading to the conclusion that strategy use of the learners was not affected by their proficiency level in either teacher or peer scaffolding groups.

Keywords: peer scaffolding, proficiency level, reading strategy, sociocultural theory, teacher scaffolding

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4195 The Interrelationship of Social Sustainability and Urban Form; the Case of Modern and Traditional Iranian Cities

Authors: Ahmadreza Hakiminejad, Changfeng Fu, Hamideh Mohammadzadeh Titkanlou


For decades, sustainable development has been an imperative concern in the process of urban development of the world’s developed countries. Despite the fact that the concept of sustainability, primarily, emerged by virtue of warning over global environmental catastrophes, it subsequently led to the ongoing debates not only over environmental, but also economic and sociocultural issues involved. This study, particularly, discusses the constituents of social sustainability– as one of the three pillars of sustainable development– and its situation within an urban context. It tries to investigate the interrelationships between the elements of social sustainability and the quality of physical environment. The paper, firstly, depicts a theoretical overview of the notions of social sustainability and urban form. Secondly, it will discuss the interrelationship between the two. And lastly, it will investigate and analyse this interrelationship through the historical transformation of Iranian cities. The research aims to answer this very question that how the urban form within the context of the built environment can influence the social behaviors so as to achieve a more sustainable society. It is to examine how and why compact, high-density and mixed-use urban patterns are environmentally sound, efficient for transport, socially beneficial and economically viable. The methodology used in this paper is desk research. Thus, the documents from different urban related disciplines including urban planning, urban design, urban sociology and urban policy have been reviewed. The research has also applied a comparative approach to discuss and analyse the impacts of different urban forms on the elements of social sustainability within the context of modern and traditional Iranian cities. The paper concludes with an examination of possible future directions of Iranian cities with consideration to socio-cultural concepts and the challenges that will have to be overcome to make progress towards social sustainability.

Keywords: social sustainability, urban form, compact city, Iranian cities

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4194 Pre- and Post-Brexit Experiences of the Bulgarian Working Class Migrants: Qualitative and Quantitative Approaches

Authors: Mariyan Tomov


Bulgarian working class immigrants are increasingly concerned with UK’s recent immigration policies in the context of Brexit. The new ID system would exclude many people currently working in Britain and would break the usual immigrant travel patterns. Post-Brexit Britain would aim to repeal seasonal immigrants. Measures for keeping long-term and life-long immigrants have been implemented and migrants that aim to remain in Britain and establish a household there would be more privileged than temporary or seasonal workers. The results of such regulating mechanisms come at the expense of migrants’ longings for a ‘normal’ existence, especially for those coming from Central and Eastern Europe. Based on in-depth interviews with Bulgarian working class immigrants, the study found out that their major concerns following the decision of the UK to leave the EU are related with the freedom to travel, reside and work in the UK. Furthermore, many of the interviewed women are concerned that they could lose some of the EU's fundamental rights, such as maternity and protection of pregnant women from unlawful dismissal. The soar of commodity prices and university fees and the limited access to public services, healthcare and social benefits in the UK, are also subject to discussion in the paper. The most serious problem, according to the interview, is that the attitude towards Bulgarians and other immigrants in the UK is deteriorating. Both traditional and social media in the UK often portray the migrants negatively by claiming that they take British job positions while simultaneously abuse the welfare system. As a result, the Bulgarian migrants often face social exclusion, which might have negative influence on their health and welfare. In this sense, some of the interviewed stress on the fact that the most important changes after Brexit must take place in British society itself. The aim of the proposed study is to provide a better understanding of the Bulgarian migrants’ economic, health and sociocultural experience in the context of Brexit. Methodologically, the proposed paper leans on: 1. Analysing ethnographic materials dedicated to the pre- and post-migratory experiences of Bulgarian working class migrants, using SPSS. 2. Semi-structured interviews are conducted with more than 50 Bulgarian working class migrants [N > 50] in the UK, between 18 and 65 years. The communication with the interviewees was possible via Viber/Skype or face-to-face interaction. 3. The analysis is guided by theoretical frameworks. The paper has been developed within the framework of the research projects of the National Scientific Fund of Bulgaria: DCOST 01/25-20.02.2017 supporting COST Action CA16111 ‘International Ethnic and Immigrant Minorities Survey Data Network’.

Keywords: Bulgarian migrants in UK, economic experiences, sociocultural experiences, Brexit

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4193 The Classical Islamic Laws of Apostasy in the Present Context

Authors: Ali Akbar


The main purpose of this essay is to examine whether or not the earthly punishments in regards to apostates that are often found in classical Islamic sources are applicable in the present context. The paper indeed addresses how Muslims should understand the question of apostasy in the contemporary context. To do so, the paper first argues that an accurate understanding of the way the Quranic verses and prophetic hadiths deal with the concept of apostasy could help us rethink and re-examine the classical Islamic laws on apostasy in the present context. In addition, building on Abdolkarim Soroush’s theory of contraction and expansion of religious knowledge, this article argues that approaches to apostasy in the present context can move away from what prescribed by classical Islamic laws. Finally, it argues that instances of persecution of apostates in the early days of Islam during the Medinan period of Muhammad’s prophetic mission should be interpreted in their own socio-historical context. Rereading these reports within our modern context supports the mutability of the traditional corporal punishments of apostasy.

Keywords: apostasy, Islam, Quran, hadith, Abdolkarim Soroush, contextualization

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4192 Understanding Awareness, Agency and Autonomy of Mothers and Potential of Digital Technology in Expanding Maternal Health Information Access: A Survey of Mothers in Urban India

Authors: Sumiti Saharan, Pallav Patankar, Lily W. Lee


Understanding the health-seeking behaviors and attitudes of women towards maternal health in the context of gender roles and family dynamics is tremendously crucial for designing effective and impactful interventions aimed at improving maternal and child health outcomes. Further, as the digital world becomes more accessible and affordable, it is imperative to scope the potential of digital technology in enabling access to maternal health information in different socio-economic groups (SEGs). In the summer of 2017, we conducted a study with 500 women across different SEGs in urban India who were pregnant or had had a delivery in the last year. The study was undertaken to assess their maternal health information seeking behavior with a particular focus on probing their use of digital technology for health-related information. The study also measured women's decision-making autonomy in the context of maternal health, awareness of their rights to quality and respectful maternal healthcare, and agency to voice their rights. We probed the impact of key variables including education, age, and socioeconomic status on all outcome variables. In terms of health-seeking behaviors, we found that women heavily relied on medical professionals and/or their mothers and mothers-in-law for all maternal health advice. Digital adoption was found to be high across all SEGs, with around 70% of women from all populations using the internet several times a week. On the other hand, use of the internet for both accessing maternal health information and choosing maternity hospitals were both significantly dependent on SEG. The key reasons reported for not using the internet for health purposes were lack of awareness and lack of trust on content accuracy. Decisions around health practices and type of delivery were found to be jointly made by women and other family members. Almost all women reported their husbands to play a key role in all maternal health decisions and for decisions with a clear financial implication like choice of hospital for delivery, husbands were reported to be the sole decision maker by a majority of women. The agency of women was also found to be low in interactions with maternal healthcare providers with a third of respondents not comfortable with voicing their opinions and preferences to their doctors. Interestingly, we find that this relatively low agency was prominent in both lower middle class and middle-class SEGs. Recognition of the sociocultural determinants of behavior is the first step in developing actionable strategies for improving maternal health outcomes. Our study quantifies the agency and autonomy of women in urban India and the variables that impact them. Our findings emphasize the value of gender normative approaches that factor in the key role husbands play in guiding maternal health decisions. They also highlight the power of digital approaches for catalyzing access to maternal health information. These insights into the attitude and behaviors of mothers in context of their sociocultural environments—and their relationship with digital technology—can help pave the way towards designing effective, scalable maternal and child health programs in developing nations like India.

Keywords: access to healthcare information, behavior, digital health, maternal health

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4191 A Novel Approach to Design and Implement Context Aware Mobile Phone

Authors: G. S. Thyagaraju, U. P. Kulkarni


Context-aware computing refers to a general class of computing systems that can sense their physical environment, and adapt their behaviour accordingly. Context aware computing makes systems aware of situations of interest, enhances services to users, automates systems and personalizes applications. Context-aware services have been introduced into mobile devices, such as PDA and mobile phones. In this paper we are presenting a novel approaches used to realize the context aware mobile. The context aware mobile phone (CAMP) proposed in this paper senses the users situation automatically and provides user context required services. The proposed system is developed by using artificial intelligence techniques like Bayesian Network, fuzzy logic and rough sets theory based decision table. Bayesian Network to classify the incoming call (high priority call, low priority call and unknown calls), fuzzy linguistic variables and membership degrees to define the context situations, the decision table based rules for service recommendation. To exemplify and demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed methods, the context aware mobile phone is tested for college campus scenario including different locations like library, class room, meeting room, administrative building and college canteen.

Keywords: context aware mobile, fuzzy logic, decision table, Bayesian probability

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4190 Applying Biculturalism in Studying Tourism Host Community Cultural Integrity and Individual Member Stress

Authors: Shawn P. Daly


Communities heavily engaged in the tourism industry discover their values intersect, meld, and conflict with those of visitors. Maintaining cultural integrity in the face of powerful external pressures causes stress among society members. This effect represents a less studied aspect of sustainable tourism. The present paper brings a perspective unique to the tourism literature: biculturalism. The grounded theories, coherent hypotheses, and validated constructs and indicators of biculturalism represent a sound base from which to consider sociocultural issues in sustainable tourism. Five models describe the psychological state of individuals operating at cultural crossroads: assimilation (joining the new culture), acculturation (grasping the new culture but remaining of the original culture), alternation (varying behavior to cultural context), multicultural (maintaining distinct cultures), and fusion (blending cultures). These five processes divide into two units of analysis (individual and society), permitting research questions at levels important for considering sociocultural sustainability. Acculturation modelling has morphed into dual processes of acculturation (new culture adaptation) and enculturation (original culture adaptation). This dichotomy divides sustainability research questions into human impacts from assimilation (acquiring new culture, throwing away original), separation (rejecting new culture, keeping original), integration (acquiring new culture, keeping original), and marginalization (rejecting new culture, throwing away original). Biculturalism is often cast in terms of its emotional, behavioral, and cognitive dimensions. Required cultural adjustments and varying levels of cultural competence lead to physical, psychological, and emotional outcomes, including depression, lowered life satisfaction and self-esteem, headaches, and back pain—or enhanced career success, social skills, and life styles. Numerous studies provide empirical scales and research hypotheses for sustainability research into tourism’s causality and effect on local well-being. One key issue in applying biculturalism to sustainability scholarship concerns identification and specification of the alternative new culture contacting local culture. Evidence exists for tourism industry, universal tourist, and location/event-specific tourist culture. The biculturalism paradigm holds promise for researchers examining evolving cultural identity and integrity in response to mass tourism. In particular, confirmed constructs and scales simplify operationalization of tourism sustainability studies in terms of human impact and adjustment.

Keywords: biculturalism, cultural integrity, psychological and sociocultural adjustment, tourist culture

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4189 An Exploratory Study: Mobile Learning as a Means of Promoting Sustainable Learning in the Saudi General Educational Schools via an Activity Theory Lens

Authors: Aiydh Aljeddani


Sustainable learning is an emerging concept that aims at enhancing sustainability literacy and competency in educational contexts. Mobile learning is one of the means increasingly used in sustainable development education nowadays. Studies which have explored this issue in the Saudi educational context so far are rare. Therefore, the current study attempted to explore the current situation of the usage of mobile learning in the Saudi elementary and secondary schools as a means of promoting sustainable learning. It also focused on how mobile learning has been implemented in those schools to promote sustainable learning and what factors have contributed to the success/failure of the implementation of mobile learning and possible ways to improve the current practice. An interpretive approach was followed in this study to gain a thorough understanding of the explored issue in the Saudi educational context using the activity theory as a lens to do so. A qualitative case study methodology in which semi-structured interviews, documents analysis and nominal group were used to gather the data for this study. Two hundred and twenty-nine participants representing several main stakeholders in the educational system took part in this study. Those included six general education schools, head teachers, teachers, students’ parents, educational supervisors, one curriculum designer and academic curriculum specialists. Through the lens of activity theory, the results of the study showed that there were contradictions in the current practice between the elements of the activity system and within each of its elements. Furthermore, several sociocultural factors have influenced both the division of labour and the community's members. These have acted as obstacles which have impeded the usage of mobile learning to promote sustainable learning in this context. It was found that shifting from the current practice to sustainable learning via the usage of mobile learning requires appropriate interrelationship between the different elements of the activity system. The study finally offers a number of recommendations to improve on the current practices and suggests areas for further studies.

Keywords: activity theory, mobile learning, sustainability competency, sustainability literacy, sustainable learning

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4188 A User Study on the Adoption of Context-Aware Destination Mobile Applications

Authors: Shu-Lu Hsu, Fang-Yi Chu


With the advances in information and communications technology, mobile context-aware applications have become powerful marketing tools. In Apple online store, there are numerous mobile applications (APPs) developed for destination tour. This study investigated the determinants of adoption of context-aware APPs for destination tour services. A model is proposed based on Technology Acceptance Model and privacy concern theory. The model was empirically tested based on a sample of 259 users of a tourism APP published by Kaohsiung Tourism Bureau, Taiwan. The results showed that the fitness of the model is well and, among all the factors, the perceived usefulness and perceived ease of use have the most significant influences on the intention to adopt context-aware destination APPs. Finally, contrary to the findings of previous literature, the effect of privacy concern on the adoption intention of context-aware APP is insignificant.

Keywords: mobile application, context-aware, privacy concern, TAM

Procedia PDF Downloads 188