Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 1024

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1024 Fingers Exergames to Improve Fine Motor Skill in Autistic Children

Authors: Zulhisyam Salleh, Fizatul Aini Patakor, Rosilah Wahab, Awangku Khairul Ridzwan Awangku Jaya

Abstract:

Autism is a lifelong developmental disability that affects how people perceive the world and interact with others. Most of these children have difficulty with fine motor skills which typically struggle with handwriting and fine activities in their routine life such as getting dressed and controlled use of the everyday tool. Because fine motor activities encompass so many routine functions, a fine motor delay can have a measurable negative impact on a person's ability to handle daily practical tasks. This project proposed a simple fine motor exercise aid plus the game (exergame) for autistic children who discover from fine motor difficulties. The proposed exergame will be blinking randomly and user needs to bend their finger accordingly. It will notify the user, whether they bend the right finger or not. The system is realized using Arduino, which is programmed to control all the operated circuit. The feasibility studies with six autistic children were conducted and found the child interested in using exergame and could quickly get used to it. This study provides important guidance for future investigations of the exergame potential for accessing and improving fine motor skill among autistic children.

Keywords: Autism children, Arduino project, fine motor skill, finger exergame.

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1023 Efficacy of Methyl Eugenol and Food-Based Lures in Trapping Oriental Fruit Fly Bactrocera dorsalis (Diptera: Tephritidae) on Mango Homestead Trees

Authors: Juliana Amaka Ugwu

Abstract:

Trapping efficiency of methyl eugenol and three locally made food-based lures were evaluated in three locations for trapping of B. dorsalis on mango homestead trees in Ibadan South west Nigeria. The treatments were methyl eugenol, brewery waste, pineapple juice, orange juice, and control (water). The experiment was laid in a Complete Randomized Block Design (CRBD) and replicated three times in each location. Data collected were subjected to analysis of variance and significant means were separated by Turkey’s test. The results showed that B. dorsalis was recorded in all locations of study. Methyl eugenol significantly (P < 0.05) trapped higher population of B. dorsalis in all the study area. The population density of B. dorsalis was highest during the ripening period of mango in all locations. The percentage trapped flies after 7 weeks were 77.85%-82.38% (methyl eugenol), 7.29%-8.64% (pineapple juice), 5.62-7.62% (brewery waste), 4.41%-5.95% (orange juice), and 0.24-0.47% (control). There were no significance differences (p > 0.05) on the population of B. dorsalis trapped in all locations. Similarly, there were no significant differences (p > 0.05) on the population of flies trapped among the food attractants. However, the three food attractants significantly (p < 0.05) trapped higher flies than control. Methyl eugenol trapped only male flies while brewery waste and other food based attractants trapped both male and female flies. The food baits tested were promising attractants for trapping B. dorsalis on mango homestead tress, hence increased dosage could be considered for monitoring and mass trapping as management strategies against fruit fly infestation.

Keywords: Attractants, trapping, mango, Bactrocera dorsalis.

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1022 Investigating Iraqi EFL Undergraduates' Performance in the Production of Number Forms in English

Authors: Adnan Z. Mkhelif

Abstract:

The production of number forms in English tends to be problematic for Iraqi learners of English as a foreign language (EFL), even at the undergraduate level. To help better understand and consequently address this problem, it is important to identify its sources. This study aims at: (1) statistically analysing Iraqi EFL undergraduates' performance in the production of number forms in English; (2) classifying learners' errors in terms of their possible major causes; and (3) outlining some pedagogical recommendations relevant to the teaching of number forms in English. It is hypothesized in this study that (1) Iraqi EFL undergraduates still face problems in the production of number forms in English and (2) errors pertaining to the context of learning are more numerous than those attributable to the other possible causes. After reviewing the literature available on the topic, a written test comprising 50 items has been constructed and administered to a randomly chosen sample of 50 second-year college students from the Department of English, College of Education, Wasit University. The findings of the study showed that Iraqi EFL undergraduates still face problems in the production of number forms in English and that the possible major sources of learners’ errors can be arranged hierarchically in terms of the percentages of errors to which they can be ascribed as follows: (1) context of learning (50%), (2) intralingual transfer (37%), and (3) interlingual transfer (13%). It is hoped that the implications of the study findings will be beneficial to researchers, syllabus designers, as well as teachers of English as a foreign/second language.

Keywords: L2 morphology, L2 number forms, L2 vocabulary learning, productive knowledge.

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1021 Performance Comparison of Cooperative Banks in the EU, USA and Canada

Authors: Matěj Kuc

Abstract:

This paper compares different types of profitability measures of cooperative banks from two developed regions: the European Union and the United States of America together with Canada. We created balanced dataset of more than 200 cooperative banks covering 2011-2016 period. We made series of tests and run Random Effects estimation on panel data. We found that American and Canadian cooperatives are more profitable in terms of return on assets (ROA) and return on equity (ROE). There is no significant difference in net interest margin (NIM). Our results show that the North American cooperative banks accommodated better to the current market environment.

Keywords: Cooperative banking, panel data, profitability measures, random effects.

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1020 Bio-Psycho-Social Consequences and Effects in Fall-Efficacy Scale in Seniors Using Exercise Intervention of Motor Learning According to Yoga Techniques

Authors: Milada Krejci, Martin Hill, Vaclav Hosek, Dobroslava Jandova, Jiri Kajzar, Pavel Blaha

Abstract:

The paper declares effects of exercise intervention of the research project “Basic research of balance changes in seniors”, granted by the Czech Science Foundation. The objective of the presented study is to define predictors, which influence bio-psycho-social consequences and effects of balance ability in senior 65 years old and above. We focused on the Fall-Efficacy Scale changes evaluation in seniors. Comprehensive hypothesis of the project declares, that motion uncertainty (dyskinesia) can negatively affect the well-being of a senior in bio-psycho-social context. In total, random selection and testing of 100 seniors (30 males, 70 females) from Prague and Central Bohemian region was provided. The sample was divided by stratified random selection into experimental and control groups, who underwent input and output testing. For diagnostics the methods of Medical Anamnesis, Functional anthropological examinations, Tinetti Balance Assessment Tool, SF-36 Health Survey, Anamnestic comparative self-assessment scale were used. Intervention method called "Life in Balance" based on yoga techniques was applied in four-week cycle. Results of multivariate regression were verified by repeated measures ANOVA: subject factor, phase of intervention (between-subject factor), body fluid (within-subject factor) and phase of intervention × body fluid interaction). ANOVA was performed with a repetition involving the factors of subjects, experimental/control group, phase of intervention (independent variable), and x phase interaction followed by Bonferroni multiple comparison assays with a test strength of at least 0.8 on the probability level p < 0.05. In the paper results of the first-year investigation of the three years running project are analysed. Results of balance tests confirmed no significant difference between females and males in pre-test. Significant improvements in balance and walking ability were observed in experimental group in females comparing to males (F = 128.4, p < 0.001). In the females control group, there was no significant change in post- test, while in the female experimental group positive changes in posture and spine flexibility in post-tests were found. It seems that females even in senior age react better to incentives of intervention in balance and spine flexibility. On the base of results analyses, we can declare the significant improvement in social balance markers after intervention in the experimental group (F = 10.5, p < 0.001). In average, seniors are used to take four drugs daily. Number of drugs can contribute to allergy symptoms and balance problems. It can be concluded that static balance and walking ability of seniors according Tinetti Balance scale correlate significantly with psychic and social monitored markers.

Keywords: Exercises, balance, seniors 65+, health, mental and social balance.

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1019 Evaluation of Two Earliness Cotton Genotypes in Three Ecological Regions

Authors: Gholamhossein Hosseini

Abstract:

Two earliness cotton genotypes I and II, which had been developed by hybridization and backcross methods between sindise-80 as an early maturing gene parent and two other lines i.e. Red leaf and Bulgare-557 as a second parent, are subjected to different environmental conditions. The early maturing genotypes with coded names of I and II were compared with four native cotton cultivars in randomized complete block design (RCBD) with four replications in three ecological regions of Iran from 2016-2017. Two early maturing genotypes along with four native cultivars viz. Varamin, Oltan, Sahel and Arya were planted in Agricultural Research Station of Varamin, Moghan and Kashmar for evaluation. Earliness data were collected for six treatments during two years in the three regions except missing data for the second year of Kashmar. Therefore, missed data were estimated and imputed. For testing the homogeneity of error variances, each experiment at a given location or year is analyzed separately using Hartley and Bartlett’s Chi-square tests and both tests confirmed homogeneity of variance. Combined analysis of variance showed that genotypes I and II were superior in Varamin, Moghan and Kashmar regions. Earliness means and their interaction effects were compared with Duncan’s multiple range tests. Finally combined analysis of variance showed that genotypes I and II were superior in Varamin, Moghan and Kashmar regions. Earliness means and their interaction effects are compared with Duncan’s multiple range tests.

Keywords: Cotton, combined, analysis, earliness.

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1018 Factors Militating the Organization of Intramural Sport Programs in Secondary Schools: A Case Study of the Ekiti West Local Government Area of Ekiti State, Nigeria

Authors: Adewole Taiwo Adelabu

Abstract:

The study investigated the factors militating the organization of intramural sports programs in secondary schools in Ekiti State, Nigeria. The purpose of the study was to identify the factors affecting the organization of sports in secondary schools and also to proffer possible solutions to these factors. The study employed the inferential statistics of chi-square (x2). Five research hypotheses were formulated. The population for the study was all the students in the government-owned secondary schools in Ekiti West Local Government of Ekiti State Nigeria. The sample for the study was 60 students in three schools within the local government selected through simple random sampling techniques. The instrument used for the study was a self-developed questionnaire by the researcher for data collection. The instrument was presented to experts and academicians in the field of Human Kinetics and Health Education for construct and content validation. A reliability test was conducted which involves 10 students who are not part of the study. The test-retest coefficient of 0.74 was obtained which attested to the fact that the instrument was reliable enough for the study. The validated questionnaire was administered to the students in their various schools by the researcher with the help of two research assistants; the questionnaires were filled and returned to the researcher immediately. The data collected were analyzed using the descriptive statistics of frequency count, percentage and mean to analyze demographic data in section A of the questionnaire, while inferential statistics of chi-square was used to test the hypotheses at 0.05 alpha level. The results of the study revealed that personnel, fund, schedule (time) were significant factors that affect the organization of intramural sport programs among students in secondary schools in Ekiti West Local Government Area of the State. The study also revealed that organization of intramural sports programs among students of secondary schools will improve and motivate students’ participation in sports beyond the local level. However, facilities and equipment is not a significant factor affecting the organization of intramural sports among secondary school students in Ekiti West Local Government Area.

Keywords: Challenge, militating, intramural sport, programs.

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1017 Machine Learning for Aiding Meningitis Diagnosis in Pediatric Patients

Authors: Karina Zaccari, Ernesto Cordeiro Marujo

Abstract:

This paper presents a Machine Learning (ML) approach to support Meningitis diagnosis in patients at a children’s hospital in Sao Paulo, Brazil. The aim is to use ML techniques to reduce the use of invasive procedures, such as cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) collection, as much as possible. In this study, we focus on predicting the probability of Meningitis given the results of a blood and urine laboratory tests, together with the analysis of pain or other complaints from the patient. We tested a number of different ML algorithms, including: Adaptative Boosting (AdaBoost), Decision Tree, Gradient Boosting, K-Nearest Neighbors (KNN), Logistic Regression, Random Forest and Support Vector Machines (SVM). Decision Tree algorithm performed best, with 94.56% and 96.18% accuracy for training and testing data, respectively. These results represent a significant aid to doctors in diagnosing Meningitis as early as possible and in preventing expensive and painful procedures on some children.

Keywords: Machine learning, medical diagnosis, meningitis detection, gradient boosting.

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1016 Mechanical Qualification Test Campaign on the Demise Observation Capsule

Authors: B. Tiseo, V. Quaranta, G. Bruno, R. Gardi, T. Watts, S. Dussy

Abstract:

This paper describes the qualification test campaign performed on the Demise Observation Capsule DOC-EQM as part of the Future Launch Preparatory Program FLPP3. The mechanical environment experienced during launch ascent and separation phase was first identified and then replicated in terms of sine, random and shock vibration. The loads identification is derived by selecting the worst possible case. Vibration and shock qualification test performed at CIRA Space Qualification laboratory is herein described. Mechanical fixtures’ design and validation, carried out by means of FEM, is also addressed due to its fundamental role in the vibrational test campaign. The Demise Observation Capsule (DOC) successfully passed the qualification test campaign. Functional test and resonance search have not been point any fault and damages of the capsule.

Keywords: Capsule, demise, DOC, launch environment, Re-Entry, qualification.

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1015 Optimal Production and Maintenance Policy for a Partially Observable Production System with Stochastic Demand

Authors: Leila Jafari, Viliam Makis

Abstract:

In this paper, the joint optimization of the economic manufacturing quantity (EMQ), safety stock level, and condition-based maintenance (CBM) is presented for a partially observable, deteriorating system subject to random failure. The demand is stochastic and it is described by a Poisson process. The stochastic model is developed and the optimization problem is formulated in the semi-Markov decision process framework. A modification of the policy iteration algorithm is developed to find the optimal policy. A numerical example is presented to compare the optimal policy with the policy considering zero safety stock.

Keywords: Condition-based maintenance, economic manufacturing quantity, safety stock, stochastic demand.

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1014 Reinforcing Effects of Natural Micro-Particles on the Dynamic Impact Behaviour of Hybrid Bio-Composites Made of Short Kevlar Fibers Reinforced Thermoplastic Composite Armor

Authors: Edison E. Haro, Akindele G. Odeshi, Jerzy A. Szpunar

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Hybrid bio-composites are developed for use in protective armor through positive hybridization offered by reinforcement of high-density polyethylene (HDPE) with Kevlar short fibers and palm wood micro-fillers. The manufacturing process involved a combination of extrusion and compression molding techniques. The mechanical behavior of Kevlar fiber reinforced HDPE with and without palm wood filler additions are compared. The effect of the weight fraction of the added palm wood micro-fillers is also determined. The Young modulus was found to increase as the weight fraction of organic micro-particles increased. However, the flexural strength decreased with increasing weight fraction of added micro-fillers. The interfacial interactions between the components were investigated using scanning electron microscopy. The influence of the size, random alignment and distribution of the natural micro-particles was evaluated. Ballistic impact and dynamic shock loading tests were performed to determine the optimum proportion of Kevlar short fibers and organic micro-fillers needed to improve impact strength of the HDPE. These results indicate a positive hybridization by deposition of organic micro-fillers on the surface of short Kevlar fibers used in reinforcing the thermoplastic matrix leading to enhancement of the mechanical strength and dynamic impact behavior of these materials. Therefore, these hybrid bio-composites can be promising materials for different applications against high velocity impacts.

Keywords: Hybrid bio-composites, organic nano-fillers, dynamic shocking loading, ballistic impacts, energy absorption.

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1013 Level Shifted Carrier Signal Based Scalar Random Pulse Width Modulation Algorithms for Cascaded Multilevel Inverter Fed Induction Motor Drive

Authors: M. Nayeemuddin, T. Bramhananda Reddy, M. Vijaya Kumar

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Acoustic noise becoming ever more obnoxious radiated by voltage source inverter fed induction motor drive in modern and industrial applications. The drive utilized for industrial and modern applications should use “spread spectrum” innovation known as Random pulse width modulation (PWM) algorithms where acoustic noise emanates through the machine should be critically concerned. This paper illustrates three types of random PWM control algorithms with fixed switching frequency namely 1) Random modulating PWM 2) Random carrier PWM and 3) Random modulating-carrier PWM. The spectrum plots of the motor stator current demonstrate the strength and robustness of the proposed PWM algorithms. To affirm the proposed algorithms, experimental tests have been conducted using dSPACE rt1104 control board on a v/f control three phase induction motor drive fed by DC link cascaded multilevel inverter.

Keywords: Multilevel inverter, acoustic noise, CSVPWM, total harmonic distortion, random PWM algorithm.

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1012 The Effectiveness of Therapeutic Exercise on Motor Skills and Attention of Male Students with Autism Spectrum Disorder

Authors: Masoume Pourmohamadreza-Tajrishi, Parviz Azadfallah

Abstract:

Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) involve myriad aberrant perceptual, cognitive, linguistic, and social behaviors. The term spectrum emphasizes that the disabilities associated with ASD fall on a continuum from relatively mild to severe. People with ASD may display stereotyped behaviors such as twirling, spinning objects, flapping the hands, and rocking. The individuals with ASD exhibit communication problems due to repetitive/restricted behaviors. Children with ASD who lack the motivation to learn, who do not enjoy physical challenges, or whose sensory perception results in confusing or unpleasant feedback from movement may not become sufficiently motivated to practice motor activities. As a result, they may show both a delay in developing certain motor skills. Additionally, attention is an important component of learning. As far as children with ASD have problems in joint attention, many education-based programs are needed to consider some aspects of attention and motor activities development for students with ASD. These programs focus on the basic movement skills that are crucial for the future development of the more complex skills needed in games, dance, sports, gymnastics, active play, and recreational physical activities. The purpose of the present research was to determine the effectiveness of therapeutic exercise on motor skills and attention of male students with ASD. This was an experimental study with a control group. The population consisted of 8-10 year-old male students with ASD and 30 subjects were selected randomly from an available center suitable for the children with ASD. They were evaluated by the Basic Motor Ability Test (BMAT) and Persian version of computerized Stroop color-word test and randomly assigned to an experimental and control group (15 students in per group). The experimental group participated in 16 therapeutic exercise sessions and received therapeutic exercise program (twice a week; each lasting for 45 minutes) designed based on the Spark motor program while the control group did not. All subjects were evaluated by BMAT and Stroop color-word test after the last session again. The collected data were analyzed by using multivariate analysis of covariance (MANCOVA). The results of MANCOVA showed that experimental and control groups had a significant difference in motor skills and at least one of the components of attention (correct responses, incorrect responses, no responses, the reaction time of congruent words and reaction time of incongruent words in the Stroop test). The findings showed that the therapeutic exercise had a significant effect on motor skills and all components of attention in students with ASD. We can conclude that the therapeutic exercise led to promote the motor skills and attention of students with ASD, so it is necessary to design or plan such programs for ASD students to prevent their communication or academic problems.

Keywords: Attention, autism spectrum disorder, motor skills, therapeutic exercise.

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1011 Growth and Yield Assessment of Two Types of Sorghum-Sudangrass Hybrids as Affected by Deficit Irrigation

Authors: A. Abbas Khalaf, L. Issazadeh, Z. Arif Abdullah, J. Hassanpour

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In order to evaluate the growth and yield properties of two Sorghum-Sudangrass hybrids under different irrigation levels, an investigation was done in the experiment site of Collage of Agriculture, University of Duhok, Kurdistan region of Iraq (36°5´38 N, 42°52´02 E) in the years 2015-16. The experiment was conducted under Randomized Complete Block Design (RCBD) with three replications, which main factor was irrigation treatments (I100, I75 and I50) according to evaporation pan class A and type of Sorghum-Sudangrass hybrids (KH12SU9001, G1) and (KH12SU9002, G2) were factors of subplots. The parameters studied were: plant height (cm), number of green leaves per plant; leaf area (m2/m2), stem thickness (mm), percent of protein, fresh and dry biomass (ton.ha-1) and also crop water productivity. The results of variance analysis showed that KH12SU9001 variety had more amount of leaf area, percent of protein, fresh and dry biomass yield in comparison to KH12SU9002 variety. By comparing effects of irrigation levels on vegetative growth and yield properties, results showed that amount of plant height, fresh and dry biomass weight was decreased by decreasing irrigation level from full irrigation regime to 5 o% of irrigation level. Also, results of crop water productivity (CWP) indicated that improvement in quantity of irrigation would impact fresh and dry biomass yield significantly. Full irrigation regime was recorded the highest level of CWP (1.28-1.29 kg.m-3).

Keywords: Deficit irrigation, growth, Sorghum-Sudangrass hybrid, yield.

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1010 Effect of Fatty Acids in Feed on Levels of Antibody Titers and CD4 and CD8 T-Lymphocyte against Newcastle Disease Virus of Vaccinated Broiler Chicken

Authors: Alaa A. Shamaun Al-Abboodi, Yunis A. A. Bapeer

Abstract:

400 one-day-old male broiler chicks (Ross-308) randomly divided to 2 main groups, 1st main group (GA) was feeding basal diet with medium chain fatty acid (MCFA) at rate of 0.15% and divided to four subgroups, 3 subgroups vaccinated with different routes with Newcastle Disease Virus (NDV) and non-vaccinated group. The 2nd main group (GB) feeding basal diet without MCFA and divided the same as 1st main group. The parameters used in this study included: ND antibody titers at 1, 10, 21, 28, 35 and 42 days of age and values of CD4 and CD8 at 1, 20, 30 and 42 days of age. This experiment detected increase in ND antibodies titers in (G1, G2, G3) groups were fed on basal diet MCFA comparing to groups were fed without adding MCFA (G5, G6, G7) and control groups (G4, G8). The results of cellular immune response (CD4 and CD8) T-cells in broiler chicks indicated that there was obviously significant relationship between dietary Fatty Acid (FA) versus the diet without FA on the level of CD4 parameter, for the entire experimental period. The effect of different ages was statistically significant in creating different values of CD4 level, whereas the CD4 level decreases markedly with age. However, analyzing the data of different vaccination methods, oculonasal method of vaccination led to the highest value of CD4 compared with the oral, S/C and control groups. There were statistical differences in CD8 values due to supplementation of FA versus the basal diet and due to the effect of different age periods. As for the age effect, the CD8 value at 20 days of age was significantly higher than at 42 and 30 days.

Keywords: Broiler, CD4 and CD8, fatty acids, Newcastle disease.

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1009 The Tourist Satisfaction on Brand Identity Design of Creative Agriculture Community Enterprise, Bang Khonthi District, Samut Songkhram Province

Authors: Panupong Chanplin, Kathaleeya Chanda., Wilailuk Mepracha

Abstract:

The aims of this research were twofold: 1) to brand identity design of Creative Agriculture Community Enterprise, Bang Khonthi District, Samut Songkhram Province and 2) to study the level of tourist satisfaction towards brand identity design of Creative Agriculture Community Enterprise, Bang Khonthi District, Samut Songkhram Province. tourist satisfaction was measured using six criteria: clear brand positioning, likeable brand personality, memorable logo, attractive color palette, professional typography and on-brand supporting graphics. The researcher utilized a probability sampling method via simple random sampling. The sample consisted of 30 tourists in the Creative Agriculture Community Enterprise. Statistics utilized for data analysis were percentage, mean, and standard deviation. The results suggest that tourist had high levels of satisfaction towards all six criteria of the brand identity design that was designed to target them. This study proposes that specifically brand identity designed of Creative Agriculture Community Enterprise could also be implemented with other real media already available on the market.

Keywords: Satisfaction, brand identity, logo, creative agriculture community enterprise.

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1008 A Development of Creative Instruction Model through Digital Media

Authors: Kathaleeya Chanda, Panupong Chanplin, Suppara Charoenpoom

Abstract:

This purposes of the development of creative instruction model through digital media are to: 1) enable learners to learn from instruction media application; 2) help learners implementing instruction media correctly and appropriately; and 3) facilitate learners to apply technology for searching information and practicing skills to implement technology creatively. The sample group consists of 130 cases of secondary students studying in Bo Kluea School, Bo Kluea Nuea Sub-district, Bo Kluea District, Nan Province. The probability sampling was selected through the simple random sampling and the statistics used in this research are percentage, mean, standard deviation and one group pretest – posttest design. The findings are summarized as follows: The congruence index of instruction media for occupation and technology subjects is appropriate. By comparing between learning achievements before implementing the instruction media and learning achievements after implementing the instruction media, it is found that the posttest achievements are higher than the pretest achievements with statistical significance at the level of .05. For the learning achievements from instruction media implementation, pretest mean is 16.24 while posttest mean is 26.28. Besides, pretest and posttest results are compared and differences of mean are tested, the test results show that the posttest achievements are higher than the pretest achievements with statistical significance at the level of .05. This can be interpreted that the learners achieve better learning progress.

Keywords: Teaching learning model, digital media, creative instruction model, facilitate learners.

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1007 Influence of Plastic Waste Reinforcement on Compaction and Consolidation Behavior of Silty Soil

Authors: Maryam Meftahi, Yashar Hamidzadeh

Abstract:

In recent decades, the amount of solid waste production has been rising. In the meantime, plastic waste is one of the major parts of urban solid waste, so, recycling plastic waste from water bottles has become a serious challenge in the whole world. The experimental program includes the study of the effect of waste plastic fibers on maximum dry density (MDD), optimum moisture content (OMC) with different sizes and contents. Also, one dimensional consolidation tests were carried out to evaluate the benefit of utilizing randomly distributed waste plastics fiber to improve the engineering behavior of a tested soils. Silty soil specimens were prepared and tested at five different percentages of plastic waste content (i.e. 0.25%, 0.50%, 0.75%, 1% and 1.25% by weight of the parent soil). The size of plastic chips used, are 4 mm, 8 mm and 12 mm long and 4 mm in width. The results show that with the addition of waste plastic fibers, the MDD and OMC and also the compressibility of soil decrease significantly.

Keywords: Silty soil, waste plastic, compaction, consolidation, reinforcement.

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1006 Influence of Nitrogen Fertilization on the Yields and Grain Quality of Winter Wheat under Different Environmental Conditions

Authors: Alicja Sułek, Grażyna Cacak-Pietrzak, Marta Wyzińska, Anna Nieróbca

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In 2013/2014 and 2014/2015, a field experiment was conducted in two locations: Osiny and Wielichowo (Poland). The two-factor experiment was based on the method of randomized subblocks, in three replications. The first factor (A) was dose of nitrogen fertilization (two levels). The second factor (B) was nine winter wheat cultivars. It was found that winter wheat cultivars exhibited different reactions to higher nitrogen fertilization depending on the years and localities. Only KWS Dacanto cultivar under all growing conditions showed a significant increase in grain yield after the application of a higher level of nitrogen fertilization. The increase in nitrogen fertilization influenced the increase in gluten proteins content in wheat grain, but these changes were statistically significant only in the first year of the study. The quality of gluten does not depend on nitrogen fertilization. The quality of wheat grain depends on cultivars.

Keywords: Fertilization, grain quality, winter wheat, yield.

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1005 Millennials' Viewpoints about Sustainable Hotels' Practices in Egypt: Promoting Responsible Consumerism

Authors: Jailan Mohamed El Demerdash

Abstract:

Millennials are a distinctive and dominant consumer group whose behavior, preferences and purchase decisions are broadly explored but not fully understood yet. Making up the largest market segment in the world, and in Egypt, they have the power to reinvent the hospitality industry and contribute to forming prospective demand for green hotels by showing willingness to adopting their environmental-friendly practices. The current study aims to enhance better understanding of Millennials' perception about sustainable initiatives and to increase the prediction power of their intentions regarding green hotel practices in Egypt. In doing so, the study is exploring the relation among different factors; Millennials' environmental awareness, their acceptance of green practices and their willingness to pay more for them. Millennials' profile, their preferences and environmental decision-making process are brought under light to stimulate actions of hospitality decision-makers and hoteliers. Bearing in mind that responsible consumerism is depending on understanding the different influences on consumption. The study questionnaire was composed of four sections and it was distributed to random Egyptian travelers' blogs and Facebook groups, with approximately 8000 members. Analysis of variance test (ANOVA) was used to examine the study variables. The findings indicated that Millennials' environmental awareness will not be a significant factor in their acceptance of hotel green practices, as well as, their willingness to pay more for them. However, Millennials' acceptance of the level of hotel green practices will have an impact on their willingness to pay more. Millennials were found to have a noticeable level of environmental awareness but lack commitment to tolerating hotel green practices and their associated high prices.

Keywords: Millennials, environment, awareness, green practices, paying more, Egypt.

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1004 Perceived Determinants of Obesity among Primary School Pupils in Eti Osa Local Government Area of Lagos State, Nigeria

Authors: B. O. Diyaolu, E. A. Okebanjo

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Children in today’s world need attention and care even with their physique as obesity is also at the increased. Several factors can be responsible for obesity in children and adequate attention is paramount in other not to accommodate it into adolescent period. This study investigated perceived determinants of obesity among primary school pupils in Eti Osa Local Government area of Lagos State. Descriptive survey research design was used and population was all obese pupils in Eti Osa Local Government Area of Lagos State. 92 pupils were selected from randomly picked 12 primary schools while purposive sampling technique was used to pick primary 4-6 pupils. With the aid of body mass index (BMI) and age percentile chart the obese pupils were selected. The instrument for the study was a self-developed and structured questionnaire on perceived determinant of obesity. The questionnaire was divided into three sections. The Cronbach’s Alpha reliability coefficient of 0.74 was obtained. The hypotheses were tested at 0.05 significant levels. The completed questionnaire was collated coded and analyzed using descriptive statistics of frequency counts and percentage and inferential statistics of chi-square (X2). Findings of this study revealed that physical activities and parental influences were determinant of obesity. Physical activity is essential in reducing the rate of obesity in Eti Osa Local Government Area both at home and within the school environment. Primary schools need to create more playing ground for pupils to exercise themselves. Parents need to cater for their children diet ensuring not just the quantity but the quality as well.

Keywords: Feeding pattern, obese pupils, parental influence, physical activities.

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1003 Individual Differences and Paired Learning in Virtual Environments

Authors: Patricia M. Boechler, Heather M. Gautreau

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In this research study, postsecondary students completed an information learning task in an avatar-based 3D virtual learning environment. Three factors were of interest in relation to learning; 1) the influence of collaborative vs. independent conditions, 2) the influence of the spatial arrangement of the virtual environment (linear, random and clustered), and 3) the relationship of individual differences such as spatial skill, general computer experience and video game experience to learning. Students completed pretest measures of prior computer experience and prior spatial skill. Following the premeasure administration, students were given instruction to move through the virtual environment and study all the material within 10 information stations. In the collaborative condition, students proceeded in randomly assigned pairs, while in the independent condition they proceeded alone. After this learning phase, all students individually completed a multiple choice test to determine information retention. The overall results indicated that students in pairs did not perform any better or worse than independent students. As far as individual differences, only spatial ability predicted the performance of students. General computer experience and video game experience did not. Taking a closer look at the pairs and spatial ability, comparisons were made on pairs high/matched spatial ability, pairs low/matched spatial ability and pairs that were mismatched on spatial ability. The results showed that both high/matched pairs and mismatched pairs outperformed low/matched pairs. That is, if a pair had even one individual with strong spatial ability they would perform better than pairs with only low spatial ability individuals. This suggests that, in virtual environments, the specific individuals that are paired together are important for performance outcomes. The paper also includes a discussion of trends within the data that have implications for virtual environment education.

Keywords: Avatar-based, virtual environment, paired learning, individual differences.

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1002 Lead and Cadmium Spatial Pattern and Risk Assessment around Coal Mine in Hyrcanian Forest, North Iran

Authors: Mahsa Tavakoli, Seyed Mohammad Hojjati, Yahya Kooch

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In this study, the effect of coal mining activities on lead and cadmium concentrations and distribution in soil was investigated in Hyrcanian forest, North Iran. 16 plots (20×20 m2) were established by systematic-randomly (60×60 m2) in an area of 4 ha (200×200 m2-mine entrance placed at center). An area adjacent to the mine was not affected by the mining activity; considered as the controlled area. In order to investigate soil lead and cadmium concentration, one sample was taken from the 0-10 cm in each plot. To study the spatial pattern of soil properties and lead and cadmium concentrations in the mining area, an area of 80×80m2 (the mine as the center) was considered and 80 soil samples were systematic-randomly taken (10 m intervals). Geostatistical analysis was performed via Kriging method and GS+ software (version 5.1). In order to estimate the impact of coal mining activities on soil quality, pollution index was measured. Lead and cadmium concentrations were significantly higher in mine area (Pb: 10.97±0.30, Cd: 184.47±6.26 mg.kg-1) in comparison to control area (Pb: 9.42±0.17, Cd: 131.71±15.77 mg.kg-1). The mean values of the PI index indicate that Pb (1.16) and Cd (1.77) presented slightly polluted. Results of the NIPI index showed that Pb (1.44) and Cd (2.52) presented slight pollution and moderate pollution respectively. Results of variography and kriging method showed that it is possible to prepare interpolation maps of lead and cadmium around the mining areas in Hyrcanian forest. According to results of pollution and risk assessments, forest soil was contaminated by heavy metals (lead and cadmium); therefore, using reclamation and remediation techniques in these areas is necessary.

Keywords: Traditional coal mining, heavy metals, pollution indicators, geostatistics, caspian forest.

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1001 Reduction of Plants Biodiversity in Hyrcanian Forest by Coal Mining Activities

Authors: Mahsa Tavakoli, Seyed Mohammad Hojjati, Yahya Kooch

Abstract:

Considering that coal mining is one of the important industrial activities, it may cause damages to environment. According to the author’s best knowledge, the effect of traditional coal mining activities on plant biodiversity has not been investigated in the Hyrcanian forests. Therefore, in this study, the effect of coal mining activities on vegetation and tree diversity was investigated in Hyrcanian forest, North Iran. After filed visiting and determining the mine, 16 plots (20×20 m2) were established by systematic-randomly (60×60 m2) in an area of 4 ha (200×200 m2-mine entrance placed at center). An area adjacent to the mine was not affected by the mining activity, and it is considered as the control area. In each plot, the data about trees such as number and type of species were recorded. The biodiversity of vegetation cover was considered 5 square sub-plots (1 m2) in each plot. PAST software and Ecological Methodology were used to calculate Biodiversity indices. The value of Shannon Wiener and Simpson diversity indices for tree cover in control area (1.04±0.34 and 0.62±0.20) was significantly higher than mining area (0.78±0.27 and 0.45±0.14). The value of evenness indices for tree cover in the mining area was significantly lower than that of the control area. The value of Shannon Wiener and Simpson diversity indices for vegetation cover in the control area (1.37±0.06 and 0.69±0.02) was significantly higher than the mining area (1.02±0.13 and 0.50±0.07). The value of evenness index in the control area was significantly higher than the mining area. Plant communities are a good indicator of the changes in the site. Study about changes in vegetation biodiversity and plant dynamics in the degraded land can provide necessary information for forest management and reforestation of these areas.

Keywords: Vegetation biodiversity, species composition, traditional coal mining, caspian forest.

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1000 Comparison of Data Reduction Algorithms for Image-Based Point Cloud Derived Digital Terrain Models

Authors: M. Uysal, M. Yilmaz, I. Tiryakioğlu

Abstract:

Digital Terrain Model (DTM) is a digital numerical representation of the Earth's surface. DTMs have been applied to a diverse field of tasks, such as urban planning, military, glacier mapping, disaster management. In the expression of the Earth' surface as a mathematical model, an infinite number of point measurements are needed. Because of the impossibility of this case, the points at regular intervals are measured to characterize the Earth's surface and DTM of the Earth is generated. Hitherto, the classical measurement techniques and photogrammetry method have widespread use in the construction of DTM. At present, RADAR, LiDAR, and stereo satellite images are also used for the construction of DTM. In recent years, especially because of its superiorities, Airborne Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) has an increased use in DTM applications. A 3D point cloud is created with LiDAR technology by obtaining numerous point data. However recently, by the development in image mapping methods, the use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) for photogrammetric data acquisition has increased DTM generation from image-based point cloud. The accuracy of the DTM depends on various factors such as data collection method, the distribution of elevation points, the point density, properties of the surface and interpolation methods. In this study, the random data reduction method is compared for DTMs generated from image based point cloud data. The original image based point cloud data set (100%) is reduced to a series of subsets by using random algorithm, representing the 75, 50, 25 and 5% of the original image based point cloud data set. Over the ANS campus of Afyon Kocatepe University as the test area, DTM constructed from the original image based point cloud data set is compared with DTMs interpolated from reduced data sets by Kriging interpolation method. The results show that the random data reduction method can be used to reduce the image based point cloud datasets to 50% density level while still maintaining the quality of DTM.

Keywords: DTM, unmanned aerial vehicle, UAV, random, Kriging.

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999 Modelling Hydrological Time Series Using Wakeby Distribution

Authors: Ilaria Lucrezia Amerise

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The statistical modelling of precipitation data for a given portion of territory is fundamental for the monitoring of climatic conditions and for Hydrogeological Management Plans (HMP). This modelling is rendered particularly complex by the changes taking place in the frequency and intensity of precipitation, presumably to be attributed to the global climate change. This paper applies the Wakeby distribution (with 5 parameters) as a theoretical reference model. The number and the quality of the parameters indicate that this distribution may be the appropriate choice for the interpolations of the hydrological variables and, moreover, the Wakeby is particularly suitable for describing phenomena producing heavy tails. The proposed estimation methods for determining the value of the Wakeby parameters are the same as those used for density functions with heavy tails. The commonly used procedure is the classic method of moments weighed with probabilities (probability weighted moments, PWM) although this has often shown difficulty of convergence, or rather, convergence to a configuration of inappropriate parameters. In this paper, we analyze the problem of the likelihood estimation of a random variable expressed through its quantile function. The method of maximum likelihood, in this case, is more demanding than in the situations of more usual estimation. The reasons for this lie, in the sampling and asymptotic properties of the estimators of maximum likelihood which improve the estimates obtained with indications of their variability and, therefore, their accuracy and reliability. These features are highly appreciated in contexts where poor decisions, attributable to an inefficient or incomplete information base, can cause serious damages.

Keywords: Generalized extreme values (GEV), likelihood estimation, precipitation data, Wakeby distribution.

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998 A Multigrid Approach for Three-Dimensional Inverse Heat Conduction Problems

Authors: Jianhua Zhou, Yuwen Zhang

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A two-step multigrid approach is proposed to solve the inverse heat conduction problem in a 3-D object under laser irradiation. In the first step, the location of the laser center is estimated using a coarse and uniform grid system. In the second step, the front-surface temperature is recovered in good accuracy using a multiple grid system in which fine mesh is used at laser spot center to capture the drastic temperature rise in this region but coarse mesh is employed in the peripheral region to reduce the total number of sensors required. The effectiveness of the two-step approach and the multiple grid system are demonstrated by the illustrative inverse solutions. If the measurement data for the temperature and heat flux on the back surface do not contain random error, the proposed multigrid approach can yield more accurate inverse solutions. When the back-surface measurement data contain random noise, accurate inverse solutions cannot be obtained if both temperature and heat flux are measured on the back surface.

Keywords: Conduction, inverse problems, conjugated gradient method, laser.

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997 The Influence of Beta Shape Parameters in Project Planning

Authors: Αlexios Kotsakis, Stefanos Katsavounis, Dimitra Alexiou

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Networks can be utilized to represent project planning problems, using nodes for activities and arcs to indicate precedence relationship between them. For fixed activity duration, a simple algorithm calculates the amount of time required to complete a project, followed by the activities that comprise the critical path. Program Evaluation and Review Technique (PERT) generalizes the above model by incorporating uncertainty, allowing activity durations to be random variables, producing nevertheless a relatively crude solution in planning problems. In this paper, based on the findings of the relevant literature, which strongly suggests that a Beta distribution can be employed to model earthmoving activities, we utilize Monte Carlo simulation, to estimate the project completion time distribution and measure the influence of skewness, an element inherent in activities of modern technical projects. We also extract the activity criticality index, with an ultimate goal to produce more accurate planning estimations.

Keywords: Beta distribution, PERT, Monte Carlo Simulation, skewness, project completion time distribution.

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996 Effects of Intercropping Maize (Zea mays L.) with Jack Beans (Canavalia ensiformis L.) at Different Spacing and Weeding Regimes on Crops Productivity

Authors: Oluseun S. Oyelakin, Olalekan W. Olaniyi

Abstract:

A field experiment was conducted at Ido town in Ido Local Government Area of Oyo state, Nigeria to determine the effects of intercropping maize (Zea mays L.) with Jack bean (Canavalia ensiformis L.) at different spacing and weeding regimes on crops productivity. The treatments were 2 x 2 x 3 factorial arrangement involving two spatial crop arrangements. Spacing of 75 cm x 50 cm and 90 cm x 42 cm (41.667 cm) with two plants per stand resulted in plant population of approximately 53,000 plants/hectare. Also, Randomized Complete Block Design (RCBD) with two cropping patterns (sole and intercrop), three weeding regimes (weedy check, weeds once, and weed twice) with three replicates was used. Data were analyzed with SAS (Statistical Analysis System) and statistical means separated using Least Significant Difference (LSD) (P ≤ 0.05). Intercropping and crop spacing did not have significant influence on the growth parameters and yield parameters. The maize grain yield of 1.11 t/ha obtained under sole maize was comparable to 1.05 t/ha from maize/jack beans. Weeding regime significantly influenced growth and yields of maize in intercropping with Jack beans. Weeding twice resulted in significantly higher growth than that of the other weeding regimes. Plant height at 6 Weeks After Sowing (WAS) under weeding twice regime (3 and 6 WAS) was 83.9 cm which was significantly different from 67.75 cm and 53.47 cm for weeding once (3 WAS) and no weeding regimes respectively. Moreover, maize grain yield of 1.3 t/ha obtained from plots weeded twice was comparable to that of 1.23 t/ha from single weeding and both were significantly higher than 0.71 t/ha maize grain yield obtained from the no weeding control. The dry matter production of Jack beans reduced at some growth stages due to intercropping of maize with Jack beans though with no significance effect on the other growth parameters of the crop. There was no effect on the growth parameters of Jack beans in maize/jack beans intercrop based on cropping spacing while comparable growth and dry matter production in Jack beans were produced in maize/Jack beans mixture with single weeding.

Keywords: Crop spacing, intercropping, growth parameter, weeding regime, sole cropping, week after sowing.

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995 Perception of Predictive Confounders for the Prevalence of Hypertension among Iraqi Population: A Pilot Study

Authors: Zahraa Albasry, Hadeel D. Najim, Anmar Al-Taie

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Background: Hypertension is considered as one of the most important causes of cardiovascular complications and one of the leading causes of worldwide mortality. Identifying the potential risk factors associated with this medical health problem plays an important role in minimizing its incidence and related complications. The objective of this study is to explore the prevalence of receptor sensitivity regarding assess and understand the perception of specific predictive confounding factors on the prevalence of hypertension (HT) among a sample of Iraqi population in Baghdad, Iraq. Materials and Methods: A randomized cross sectional study was carried out on 100 adult subjects during their visit to the outpatient clinic at a certain sector of Baghdad Province, Iraq. Demographic, clinical and health records alongside specific screening and laboratory tests of the participants were collected and analyzed to detect the potential of confounding factors on the prevalence of HT. Results: 63% of the study participants suffered from HT, most of them were female patients (P < 0.005). Patients aged between 41-50 years old significantly suffered from HT than other age groups (63.5%, P < 0.001). 88.9% of the participants were obese (P < 0.001) and 47.6% had diabetes with HT. Positive family history and sedentary lifestyle were significantly higher among all hypertensive groups (P < 0.05). High salt and fatty food intake was significantly found among patients suffered from isolated systolic hypertension (ISHT) (P < 0.05). A significant positive correlation between packed cell volume (PCV) and systolic blood pressure (SBP) (r = 0.353, P = 0.048) found among normotensive participants. Among hypertensive patients, a positive significant correlation found between triglycerides (TG) and both SBP (r = 0.484, P = 0.031) and diastolic blood pressure (DBP) (r = 0.463, P = 0.040), while low density lipoprotein-cholesterol (LDL-c) showed a positive significant correlation with DBP (r = 0.443, P = 0.021). Conclusion: The prevalence of HT among Iraqi populations is of major concern. Further consideration is required to detect the impact of potential risk factors and to minimize blood pressure (BP) elevation and reduce the risk of other cardiovascular complications later in life.

Keywords: Correlation, hypertension, Iraq, risk factors.

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