International Science Index
Impact of Positive Psychology Education and Interventions on Well-Being: A Study of Students Engaged in Pastoral Care
Positive psychology investigates human strengths and virtues and promotes well-being. Relying on this assumption, positive interventions have been continuously designed to build pleasure and happiness, joy and contentment, engagement and meaning, hope and optimism, satisfaction and gratitude, spirituality, and various other positive measures of well-being. In line with this model of positive psychology and interventions, this study investigated certain measures of well-being in a group of 45 students enrolled in an 18-week positive psychology course and simultaneously engaged in service-oriented interventions that they chose for themselves based on the course content and individual interests. Students’ well-being was measured at the beginning and end of the course. The well-being indicators included positive automatic thoughts, optimism and hope, satisfaction with life, and spirituality. A paired-samples t-test conducted to evaluate the impact of class content and service-oriented interventions on students’ scores of well-being indicators indicated statistically significant increase from pre-class to post-class scores. There were also significant gender differences in post-course well-being scores, with females having higher levels of well-being than males. A two-way between groups analysis of variance indicated a significant interaction effect of age by gender on the post-course well-being scores, with females in the age group of 56-65 having the highest scores of well-being in comparison to the males in the same age group. Regression analyses indicated that positive automatic thought significantly predicted hope and satisfaction with life in the pre-course analysis. In the post-course regression analysis, spiritual transcendence made a significant contribution to optimism, and positive automatic thought made a significant contribution to both hope and satisfaction with life. Finally, a significant test between pre-course and post-course regression coefficients indicated that the regression coefficients at pre-course were significantly different from post-course coefficients, suggesting that the positive psychology course and the interventions were helpful in raising the levels of well-being. The overall results suggest a substantial increase in the participants’ well-being scores after engaging in the positive-oriented interventions, implying a need for designing more positive interventions in education to promote well-being.
Complementing Assessment Processes with Standardized Tests: A Work in Progress
ABET accredited programs must assess the development of student learning outcomes (SOs) in engineering programs. Different institutions implement different strategies for this assessment, and they are usually designed “in house.” This paper presents a proposal for including standardized tests to complement the ABET assessment model in an engineering college made up of six distinct engineering programs. The engineering college formulated a model of quality assurance in education to be implemented throughout the six engineering programs to regularly assess and evaluate the achievement of SOs in each program offered. The model uses diverse techniques and sources of data to assess student performance and to implement actions of improvement based on the results of this assessment. The model is called “Assessment Process Model” and it includes SOs A through K, as defined by ABET. SOs can be divided into two categories: “hard skills” and “professional skills” (soft skills). The first includes abilities, such as: applying knowledge of mathematics, science, and engineering and designing and conducting experiments, as well as analyzing and interpreting data. The second category, “professional skills”, includes communicating effectively, and understanding professional and ethnical responsibility. Within the Assessment Process Model, various tools were used to assess SOs, related to both “hard” as well as “soft” skills. The assessment tools designed included: rubrics, surveys, questionnaires, and portfolios. In addition to these instruments, the Engineering College decided to use tools that systematically gather consistent quantitative data. For this reason, an in-house exam was designed and implemented, based on the curriculum of each program. Even though this exam was administered during various academic periods, it is not currently considered standardized. In 2017, the Engineering College included three standardized tests: one to assess mathematical and scientific reasoning and two more to assess reading and writing abilities. With these exams, the college hopes to obtain complementary information that can help better measure the development of both hard and soft skills of students in the different engineering programs. In the first semester of 2017, the three exams were given to three sample groups of students from the six different engineering programs. Students in the sample groups were either from the first, fifth, and tenth semester cohorts. At the time of submission of this paper, the engineering college has descriptive statistical data and is working with various statisticians to have a more in-depth and detailed analysis of the sample group of students’ achievement on the three exams. The overall objective of including standardized exams in the assessment model is to identify more precisely the least developed SOs in order to define and implement educational strategies necessary for students to achieve them in each engineering program.
A Study of Applying the Use of Breathing Training to Palliative Care Patients, Based on the Bio-Psycho-Social Model
In clinical practices, it is common that while facing the unknown progress of their disease, palliative care patients may easily feel anxious and depressed. These types of reactions are a cause of psychosomatic diseases and may also influence treatment results. However, the purpose of palliative care is to provide relief from all kinds of pains. Therefore, how to make patients more comfortable is an issue worth studying. This study adopted the “bio-psycho-social model” proposed by Engel and applied spontaneous breathing training, in the hope of seeing patients’ psychological state changes caused by their physiological state changes, improvements in their anxious conditions, corresponding adjustments of their cognitive functions, and further enhancement of their social functions and the social support system. This study will be a one-year study. Palliative care outpatients will be recruited and assigned to the experimental group or the control group for six outpatient visits (once a month), with 80 patients in each group. The patients of both groups agreed that this study can collect their physiological quantitative data using an HRV device before the first outpatient visit. They also agreed to answer the “Beck Anxiety Inventory (BAI)”, the “Taiwanese version of the WHOQOL-BREF questionnaire” before the first outpatient visit, to fill a self-report questionnaire after each outpatient visit, and to answer the “Beck Anxiety Inventory (BAI)”, the “Taiwanese version of the WHOQOL-BREF questionnaire” after the last outpatient visit. The patients of the experimental group agreed to receive the breathing training under HRV monitoring during the first outpatient visit of this study. Before each of the following three outpatient visits, they were required to fill a self-report questionnaire regarding their breathing practices after going home. After the outpatient visits, they were taught how to practice breathing through an HRV device and asked to practice it after going home. Later, based on the results from the HRV data analyses and the pre-tests and post-tests of the “Beck Anxiety Inventory (BAI)”, the “Taiwanese version of the WHOQOL-BREF questionnaire”, the influence of the breathing training in the bio, psycho, and social aspects were evaluated. The data collected through the self-report questionnaires of the patients of both groups were used to explore the possible interfering factors among the bio, psycho, and social changes. It is expected that this study will support the “bio-psycho-social model” proposed by Engel, meaning that bio, psycho, and social supports are closely related, and that breathing training helps to transform palliative care patients’ psychological feelings of anxiety and depression, to facilitate their positive interactions with others, and to improve the quality medical care for them.
The Effect of Tool Path Strategy on Surface and Dimension in High Speed Milling
Many orthopedic implants like proximal humerus cases require lower surface roughness and almost immediate/short lead time surgery. Thus, rapid response from the manufacturer is very crucial. Tool path strategy of milling process has a direct influence on the surface roughness and lead time of medical implant. High-speed milling as promised process would improve the machined surface quality, but conventional or super-abrasive grinding still required which imposes some drawbacks such as additional costs and time. Currently, many CAD/CAM software offers some different tool path strategies to milling free form surfaces. Nevertheless, the users must identify how to choose the strategies according to cutting tool geometry, geometry complexity, and their effects on the machined surface. This study investigates the effect of different tool path strategies for milling a proximal humerus head during finishing operation on stainless steel 316L. Experiments have been performed using MAHO MH700 S vertical milling machine and four machining strategies, namely, spiral outward, spiral inward, and radial as well as zig-zag. In all cases, the obtained surfaces were analyzed in terms of roughness and dimension accuracy compared with those obtained by simulation. The findings provide evidence that surface roughness, dimensional accuracy, and machining time have been affected by the considered tool path strategy.
Optimism, Hope and Mental Health: Optimism, Hope, Psychological Well-Being and Psychological Distress among Students, University of Pune, India
The purpose of the current study is to examine the relationships between hope, optimism and mental health (psychological well-being and psychological distress) among students. A total of 222 students (132 males and 90 females) at the University of Pune from India completed inventories Revision of the Life Orientation Test (LOT-R), the Trait Hope Scale (THS) and the Mental Health Inventory (MHI) that assessed their optimism, hope and psychological well-being and psychological distress. The results of the study showed that optimism and hope were significantly correlated with each other. Optimism is positively related to psychological well-being and optimism is negatively related to psychological distress. Also, hope was positively related to psychological well-being. However, the findings suggest that optimism and hope could influence on mental health.
Climate Safe House: A Community Housing Project Tackling Catastrophic Sea Level Rise in Coastal Communities
New Zealand, an island nation, has an extensive coastline peppered with small communities of iconic buildings known as Bachs. Post WWII, these modest buildings were constructed by their owners as retreats and generally were small, low cost, often using recycled material and often they fell below current acceptable building standards. In the latter part of the 20th century, real estate prices in many of these communities remained low and these areas became permanent residences for people attracted to this affordable lifestyle choice. The Blueskin Resilient Communities Trust (BRCT) is an organisation that recognises the vulnerability of communities in low lying settlements as now being prone to increased flood threat brought about by climate change and sea level rise. Some of the inhabitants of Blueskin Bay, Otago, NZ have already found their properties to be un-insurable because of increased frequency of flood events and property values have slumped accordingly. Territorial authorities also acknowledge this increased risk and have created additional compliance measures for new buildings that are less than 2 m above tidal peaks. Community resilience becomes an additional concern where inhabitants are attracted to a lifestyle associated with a specific location and its people when this lifestyle is unable to be met in a suburban or city context. Traditional models of social housing fail to provide the sense of community connectedness and identity enjoyed by the current residents of Blueskin Bay. BRCT have partnered with the Otago Polytechnic Design School to design a new form of community housing that can react to this environmental change. It is a longitudinal project incorporating participatory approaches as a means of getting people ‘on board’, to understand complex systems and co-develop solutions. In the first period, they are seeking industry support and funding to develop a transportable and fully self-contained housing model that exploits current technologies. BRCT also hope that the building will become an educational tool to highlight climate change issues facing us today. This paper uses the Climate Safe House (CSH) as a case study for education in architectural sustainability through experiential learning offered as part of the Otago Polytechnics Bachelor of Design. Students engage with the project with research methodologies, including site surveys, resident interviews, data sourced from government agencies and physical modelling. The process involves collaboration across design disciplines including product and interior design but also includes connections with industry, both within the education institution and stakeholder industries introduced through BRCT. This project offers a rich learning environment where students become engaged through project based learning within a community of practice, including architecture, construction, energy and other related fields. The design outcomes are expressed in a series of public exhibitions and forums where community input is sought in a truly participatory process.
Architecture and Students with Autism: Exploring Strategies for Their Inclusion in Society Mainstream
Architecture, as an art and science of designing, has always been the medium to create environments that fulfill their users’ needs. It could create an inclusive environment that would not isolate any individual regardless of his /her disabilities. It could help, hopefully, in setting the strategies that provide a supportive, educational environment that would allow the inclusion of students with autism. Architects could help in the battle against this neuro-developmental disorder by providing the accommodating environment, at home and at school, in order to prevent institutionalizing these children. Through a theoretical approach and a review of literature, this study will explore and analyze best practices in autism-friendly, supportive, teaching environments. Additionally, it would provide the range of measures, and set the strategies to deal with the students with autism sensory peculiarities, and that, in order to allow them to concentrate in the school environment, and be able to succeed, and to be integrated as an important addition to society and the social mainstream. Architects should take into consideration the general guidelines for an autism-friendly built environment, and apply them to specific buildings systems. And that, as certain design elements have great effect on children’s behavior, by appropriating architecture to provide inclusive accommodating environments, the basis for equalization of opportunities is set allowing these individuals a better, normal, non-institutional life, as the discussion presented in this study would reveal.
An Analysis of Gamification in the Post-Secondary Classroom
Gamification has now started to take root in the post-secondary classroom. Educators have learned much about gamification to date but there is still a great deal to learn. One definition of gamification is the ability to engage post-secondary students with games that are fun and correlate to class room curriculum. There is no shortage of literature illustrating the advantages of gamification in the class room. This study is an extension of similar thought as well as an extension of a previous study where in class testing proved with the used of paired T-test that gamification did significantly improve the students’ understanding of subject material. Gamification itself in the class room can range from high end computer simulated software to paper based games of which both have advantages and disadvantages. This analysis used a paper based game to highlight certain qualitative advantages of gamification. The paper based game in this analysis was inexpensive, required low preparation time for the faculty member and consumed approximately 20 minutes of class room time. Data for the study was collected through in class student feedback surveys and narrative from the faculty member moderating the game. Students were randomly selected into groups of four. Qualitative advantages identified in this analysis included: 1. Students had a chance to meet, connect and know other students. 2. Students enjoyed the gamification process given there was a sense of fun and competition. 3. The post assessment that followed the simulation game was not part of their grade calculation therefore it was an opportunity to participate in a low risk activity whereby students could subsequently self-assess their understanding of the subject material. 4. In the view of the student, content knowledge did increase after the gamification process. These qualitative advantages identified in this analysis contribute to the argument that there should be an attempt to use gamification in today’s post-secondary class room. The analysis also highlighted that eighty (80) percent of the respondents believe twenty minutes devoted to the gamification process was appropriate, however twenty (20) percentage of respondents believed that rather than scheduling a gamification process and its post quiz in the last week, a review for the final exam may have been more useful. An additional study to this hopes to determine if the scheduling of the gamification had any correlation to a percentage of the students not wanting to be engaged in the process. As well, the additional study hopes to determine at what incremental level of time invested in class room gamification produce no material incremental benefits to the student as well as determine if any correlation exist between respondents preferring not to have it at the end of the semester to students not believing the gamification process added to the increase of their curricular knowledge.
Resilience in Patients with Chronic Kidney Disease in Hemodialysis
Chronic Kidney Disease is considered a serious public health problem. The exploitation of resilience has been guided by studies conducted in various contexts, especially in hemodialysis, since the impact of diagnosis and restrictions produced during the treatment process because, despite advances in treatment, remains the stigma of the disease and the feeling of pain, hopelessness, low self-esteem and disability. The objective was to evaluate the level of resilience of patients in chronic renal dialysis. This is a descriptive, correlational, cross and quantitative research. The sample consisted of 100 patients from a Renal Replacement Therapy Unit in the countryside of São Paulo. For data collection were used the characterization instrument of Participants and the Resilience Scale. There was a predominance of males (70.0%) were Caucasian (45.0%) and had completed elementary education (34.0%). The average score obtained through the Resilience Scale was 131.3 (± 20.06) points. The resiliency level submitted may be considered satisfactory. It is expected that this study will assist in the preparation of programs and actions in order to avoid possible situations of crises faced by chronic renal patients.
The Role of Multinational Enterprises' Investments in Emerging Country's Economic Development, Case of Georgia
From the strategic point of view, not all Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs) are always positively benefiting the host economy, i.e. not all Multinational Enterprises (MNEs) are promoting local/host economies. FDI could have different impact on different sectors of the economy, based not only on annual investment amount, but MNE motivations and peculiarities of the host economy in particular. FDI analysis based only on its amount can lead to incorrect decisions, it is much more important to understand the essence of investment. Consequently, our research is oriented on MNE’s motivations, answering which sectors are most popular among international investors and why, what motivated them to invest into one or another business. Georgian economy for the last period of time is attracting more and more efficiency seeking investments, which could be translated as - concentrating production in a limited number of locations to supply various markets, while benefiting local economy with: new technologies, employment, exports diversification, increased income for the local economy and so on. Foreign investors and MNEs in particular are no longer and not so much interested in the resource seeking investments, which was the case for Georgia in the last decade of XX century. Despite the fact of huge progress for the Georgian economy, still there is a room for foreign investors to make a local market oriented investments. The local market is still rich in imported products, which should be replaced by local ones. And the last but not the least important issue is that approximately 30% of all FDIs in Georgia according to this research are “efficiency seeking” investments, which is an enormous progress and a hope for future Georgian success.
Entrepreneurship Education as a Pre-Requisite for Graduate Entrepreneurship: A Study of Graduate Entrepreneurs in Yenagoa City
The concepts of entrepreneurship education together with graduate entrepreneurship have taken centre stage in many countries as a 21st century strategy for economic growth and development. Entrepreneurship education has been viewed as a pre-requisite tool for a more effective and successful business operation. This paper seeks to verify if entrepreneurship education is pre-requisite to graduate entrepreneurship, and to ascertain if such other factors as the need for achievement, competence and experience etc. also play a foundational role in the choice of a graduate becoming an entrepreneur. The scope of the research study is entrepreneurs within Yenagoa metropolis in Bayelsa state, Nigeria. The sample target is graduates engaged in entrepreneurship activities (graduates who own and run businesses). Stratified sampling technique was used and 101 responses were obtained from a total of 300 questionnaires issued. Bar chart, tables and percentages were used to analyze the collected data. The findings revealed that personality traits, situational circumstance, need for achievement and experience/competence were the foundational factors stimulating graduate entrepreneurs to engage in entrepreneurial pursuits. Of all, personality trait showed the highest score with 73 (73%) out of 101 entrepreneurs agreeing. Experience/Competence and situational circumstances followed behind with 66 (65%) and 63 (62.4%), respectively. Entrepreneurship education revealed the least score with 33 (32.3%) out of 101 participating entrepreneurs. All hope, however, is not lost, as this shows that something can be done to increase the impact of entrepreneurship education on graduate entrepreneurship.
Neuron-Based Control Mechanisms for a Robotic Arm and Hand
A robotic arm and hand controlled by simulated
neurons is presented. The robot makes use of a biological neuron
simulator using a point neural model. The neurons and synapses are
organised to create a finite state automaton including neural inputs
from sensors, and outputs to effectors. The robot performs a simple
pick-and-place task. This work is a proof of concept study for a
longer term approach. It is hoped that further work will lead to
more effective and flexible robots. As another benefit, it is hoped that
further work will also lead to a better understanding of human and
other animal neural processing, particularly for physical motion. This
is a multidisciplinary approach combining cognitive neuroscience,
robotics, and psychology.
Combinatory Nutrition Supplementation: A Case of Synergy for Increasing Calcium Bioavailability
This paper presents an overview of how calcium interacts with the various essential nutrients within an environment of cellular and hormonal interactions for the purpose of increasing bioavailability to the human body. One example of such interactions can be illustrated with calcium homeostasis. This paper gives an in-depth discussion on the possible interactive permutations with various nutrients and factors leading to the promotion of calcium bioavailability to the body. The review hopes to provide further insights into how calcium supplement formulations can be improved to better influence its bioavailability in the human body.
Designing Mobile Application to Motivate Young People to Visit Cultural Heritage Sites
This paper presents a mobile phone application developed for sightseeing in Nikko, one of the cultural world heritages in Japan, using the BLE (Bluetooth Low Energy) beacon. Based on our pre-research, we decided to design our application for young people who walk around the area actively, but know little about the tradition and culture of Nikko. One solution is to construct many information boards to explain; however, it is difficult to construct new guide plates in cultural world heritage sites. The smartphone is a good solution to send such information to such visitors. This application was designed using a combination of the smartphone and beacons, set in the area, so that when a tourist passes near a beacon, the application displays information about the area including a map, historical or cultural information about the temples and shrines, and local shops nearby as well as a bus timetable. It is useful for foreigners, too. In addition, we developed quizzes relating to the culture and tradition of Nikko to provide information based on the Zeigarnik effect, a psychological effect. According to the results of our trials, tourists positively evaluated the basic information and young people who used the quiz function were able to learn the historical and cultural points. This application helped young visitors at Nikko to understand the cultural elements of the site. In addition, this application has a function to send notifications. This function is designed to provide information about the local community such as shops, local transportation companies and information office. The application hopes to also encourage people living in the area, and such cooperation from the local people will make this application vivid and inspire young visitors to feel that the cultural heritage site is still alive today. This is a gateway for young people to learn about a traditional place and understand the gravity of preserving such areas.
Motivating Factors and Prospects for Rural Community Involvement in Entrepreneurship: Evidence from Mantanani Island, Sabah, Malaysia
In Malaysia, particularly in Sabah, the government has been promoting entrepreneurship among rural people to encourage them to earn their living by making good use of the diverse natural resources and local cultures of Sabah. Nevertheless, despite the government’s aim to encourage more local community in rural area to involve in entrepreneurship, the involvement of community in entrepreneurial activity is still low. It is crucial to identify the factors stimulate (or prevent) the involvement of rural community in Sabah in entrepreneurial activity. Therefore, this study tries to investigate the personal and contextual factors that may have impact on decision to start a business among the local community in Mantanani Island. In addition, this study also aims to identify the perceived benefits they receive from entrepreneurial activity. A structured face-to-face interview was conducted with 61 local communities in Mantanani Island. Data analysis revealed that passion, personal skills and self-confidence are the significant internal factors to entrepreneurial activity, whereas access to finance, labour and infrastructure are the significant external factors that are found to influence entrepreneurship. In terms of perceived rewards they received from taking up small business, it was found that respondents are predominantly agreed that entrepreneurship offers financial benefit than non-financial. In addition, this study also offers several suggestions for entrepreneurship development in Mantanani Island and it is hoped that this study may help the related agency to develop effective support policies in order to encourage more people in rural area to involve in entrepreneurship.
Factors Affecting General Practitioners’ Transfer of Specialized Self-Care Knowledge to Patients
This study examines the key factors that influence general practitioners’ learning and transfer of specialized arthritis knowledge and self-care techniques to patients during normal patient visits. Drawing on the theory of planed behavior and using matched survey data collected from general practitioners before and after training sessions provided by specialized orthopedic physicians, the study suggests that the general practitioner’s intention to use and transfer learned knowledge was influenced mainly by intrinsic motivation, organizational learning culture and absorptive capacity, but was not influenced by extrinsic motivation. The results provide both theoretical and practical implications.
Role of Non-Renewable and Renewable Energy for Sustainable Electricity Generation in Malaysia
The main objective of this paper is to give a comprehensive review of non-renewable energy and renewable energy utilization in Malaysia, including hydropower, solar photovoltaic, biomass and biogas technologies. Malaysia mainly depends on non-renewable energy (natural gas, coal and crude oil) for electricity generation. Therefore, this paper provides a comprehensive review of the energy sector and discusses diversification of electricity generation as a strategy for providing sustainable energy in Malaysia. Energy policies and strategies to protect the non-renewable energy utilization also are highlighted, focusing in the different sources of energy available for high and sustained economic growth. Emphasis is also placed on a discussion of the role of renewable energy as an alternative source for the increase of electricity supply security. It is now evident that to achieve sustainable development through renewable energy, energy policies and strategies have to be well designed and supported by the government, industries (firms), and individual or community participation. The hope is to create a positive impact on sustainable development through renewable sources for current and future generations.
Improving the Management Systems of the Ownership Risks in Conditions of Transformation of the Russian Economy
The article analyzes problems of improving the management systems of the ownership risks in the conditions of the transformation of the Russian economy. Among the main sources of threats business owners should highlight is the inefficiency of the implementation of business models and interaction with hired managers. In this context, it is particularly important to analyze the relationship of business models and ownership risks. The analysis of this problem appears to be relevant for a number of reasons: Firstly, the increased risk appetite of the owner directly affects the business model and the composition of his holdings; secondly, owners with significant stakes in the company are factors in the formation of particular types of risks for owners, for which relations have a significant influence on a firm's competitiveness and ultimately determines its survival; and thirdly, inefficient system of management ownership of risk is one of the main causes of mass bankruptcies, which significantly affects the stable operation of the economy as a whole. The separation of the processes of possession, disposal and use in modern organizations is the cause of not only problems in the process of interaction between the owner and managers in managing the organization as a whole, but also the asymmetric information about the kinds and forms of the main risks. Managers tend to avoid risky projects, inhibit the diversification of the organization's assets, while owners can insist on the development of such projects, with the aim not only of creating new values for themselves and consumers, but also increasing the value of the company as a result of increasing capital. In terms of separating ownership and management, evaluation of projects by the ratio of risk-yield requires preservation of the influence of the owner on the process of development and making management decisions. It is obvious that without a clearly structured system of participation of the owner in managing the risks of their business, further development is hopeless. In modern conditions of forming a risk management system, owners are compelled to compromise between the desire to increase the organization's ability to produce new value, and, consequently, increase its cost due to the implementation of risky projects and the need to tolerate the cost of lost opportunities of risk diversification. Improving the effectiveness of the management of ownership risks may also contribute to the revitalization of creditors on implementation claims to inefficient owners, which ultimately will contribute to the efficiency models of ownership control to exclude variants of insolvency. It is obvious that in modern conditions, the success of the model of the ownership of risk management and audit is largely determined by the ability and willingness of the owner to find a compromise between potential opportunities for expanding the firm's ability to create new value through risk and maintaining the current level of new value creation and an acceptable level of risk through the use of models of diversification.
Small Businesses as Vehicles for Job Creation in North-West Nigeria
Small businesses are considered as engine of economic growth, contributing to employment generation, wealth creation, and poverty alleviation and food security in both developed and developing countries. Nigeria is facing many socio-economic problems and it is believed that by supporting small business development, as propellers of new ideas and more effective users of resources, often driven by individual creativity and innovation, Nigeria would be able to address some of its economic and social challenges, such as unemployment and economic diversification. Using secondary literature, this paper examines the role small businesses can play in the creation of jobs in North-West Nigeria to overcome issues of unemployment, which is the most devastating economic challenge facing the region. Most studies in this area have focused on Nigeria as a whole and only a few studies provide a regional focus, hence, this study will contribute to knowledge by filling this gap by concentrating on North-West Nigeria. It is hoped that with the present administration’s determination to improve the economy, small businesses would be used as vehicles for diversification of the economy away from crude oil to create jobs that would lead to a reduction in the country’s high unemployment level.
Graphic Animation: Innovative Language Learning for Autistic Children
It is difficult for autistic children to mix with and be around with other people. Language difficulties are a problem that affects their social life. A lack of knowledge and ability in language are factors that greatly influence their behavior, and their ability to communicate and interact. Autistic children need to be assisted to improve their language abilities through the use of suitable learning resources. This study is conducted to identify weather graphic animation resources can help autistic children learn and use transitive verbs more effectively. The study was conducted in a rural secondary school in Penang, Malaysia. The research subject comprised of three autistic students ranging in age from 14 years to 16 years. The 14-year-old student is placed in A Class and two 16-year-old students placed in B Class. The class placement of the subjects is based on the diagnostic test results conducted by the teacher and not based on age. Data collection is done through observation and interviews for the duration of five weeks; with the researcher allocating 30 minutes for every learning activity carried out. The research finding shows that the subjects learn transitive verbs better using graphic animation compared to static pictures. It is hoped that this study will give a new perspective towards the learning processes of autistic children.
The Integrated Urban Strategies Based on Deep Urban History and Modern Technology Study: Tourism and Leisure Industries as Driving Force to Reactivate Historical Area
Embracing the upcoming era of urbanization with the challenges of limitation of resources, disappearing cultural identities and conflicts among different groups of stakeholders, new integrated approaches are offered in our urban practice to help decision-makers and stakeholders frame and develop well-conceived, practical strategies for urban developing trajectories to approach urban-level sustainability in multiple social, cultural, ecological dimensions. Through bottom-up participation, we take advantage of tourism and leisure industries as driving forces for urbanization in China to promote integrated sustainable systems, with the hope of approaching both historical and ecological aspects of urban sustainability; and also thanks to top-down participation, we have codes, standards and rules established by the governments to strengthen the implementation of ecological urban sustainability. The results are monitored and evaluated experimentally and multidimensionally and the sustainable systems we constructed with local stakeholder groups turned out to be effective. The presentation of our selected projects would indicate our different focuses on urban sustainability.
A Review on Light Shafts Rendering for Indoor Scenes
Rendering light shafts is one of the important topics in computer gaming and interactive applications. The methods and models that are used to generate light shafts play crucial role to make a scene more realistic in computer graphics. This article discusses the image-based shadows and geometric-based shadows that contribute in generating volumetric shadows and light shafts, depending on ray tracing, radiosity, and ray marching technique. The main aim of this study is to provide researchers with background on a progress of light scattering methods so as to make it available for them to determine the technique best suited to their goals. It is also hoped that our classification helps researchers find solutions to the shortcomings of each method.
Integrated Education at Jazan University: Budding Hope for Employability
Experience is what makes a man perfect. Though we
tend to learn many a different things in life through practice still we
need to go an extra mile to gain experience which would be profitable
only when it is integrated with regular practice. A clear phenomenal
idea is that every teacher is a learner. The centralized idea of this paper would focus on the integrated
practices carried out among the students of Jizan University which
enhances learning through experiences. Integrated practices like
student-directed activities, balanced curriculum, phonological based
activities and use of consistent language would enlarge the vision and
mission of students to earn experience through learning. Students
who receive explicit instruction and guidance could practice the skills
and strategies through student-directed activities such as peer tutoring
and cooperative learning. The second effective practice is to use
consistent language. Consistent language provides students a model
for talking about the new concepts which also enables them to
communicate without hindrances. Phonological awareness is an
important early reading skill for all students. Students generally have
phonemic awareness in their home language can often transfer that
knowledge to a second language. And also a balanced curriculum
requires instruction in all the elements of reading. Reading is the
most effective skill when both basic and higher-order skills are
included on a daily basis. Computer based reading and listening skills
will empower students to understand language in a better way.
English language learners can benefit from sound reading instruction
even before they are fully proficient in English as long as the
instruction is comprehensible. Thus, if students have to be well
equipped in learning they should foreground themselves in various
integrated practices through multifarious experience for which
teachers are moderators and trainers. This type of learning prepares
the students for a constantly changing society which helps them to
meet the competitive world around them for better employability
fulfilling the vision and mission of the institution.
Controlling Youths Participation in Politics in Sokoto State: A Constructive Inclusiveness for Good Governance in Nigeria
Political participation involves voluntary and
deliberate efforts by the members of a political system to determine
the kinds of political institution and individuals that will govern them
and equally influence the mobilization and allocation of the available
societal resources. Over the years, youths in Nigeria participate
actively in political party rallies and voting to elect their leaders and
representatives in governance. This paper examines categories and
nature of participation in politics as well as factors that drive youths
into politics in Sokoto State. A survey conducted, through focus
group discussions, interviews and questionnaire, in the six sampled
Local Government of Sokoto State identifies three category of
political participation; namely, active, moderate and apathetic
participation. The findings reveal that 63.57% of respondents are
apathetic to politics in the State and unemployed youth constitutes
34.74% of the entire responses. The paper establishes that lack of
attainment of need (63.22%) is one of the reasons that make youths
engage into participatory activities that encourage political thuggery
and manipulation of electoral outcomes. The paper recommends that
youths should be engaged into positive rational participatory
activities that ensure inclusiveness and promotion of good
governance in Nigeria. It is hoped that this will enlighten youths and
policy implementers on the constructive strategies in controlling
youths’ negative participation in politics in Nigeria.
Job Satisfaction and Motivation as Predictors of Lecturers’ Effectiveness in Nigeria Police Academy
Job satisfaction and motivation have been given an
important attention in psychology because they are seen as main
instruments in maintaining organizational growth and development;
they are also used to accomplish organizational aims and objectives.
However, it has been observed that some institutions failed in
motivating and stimulating their workers; in contrast, workers may be
motivated but not satisfied with the job and failed to perform
efficiently and effectively. It is hoped that the study of this nature
would be of significance value to all stakeholders in education
specifically, lecturers in higher institutions in Nigeria. Also, it is
hoped that the findings of this study will enhance lecturers’
effectiveness and performance in discharging their duties. In the light
of the above statements, this study investigated whether job
satisfaction and motivation predict lecturers’ effectiveness in Nigeria
Police Academy, Wudil, Kano State. Correlational research method
was adopted for the study, while purposive sampling technique was
used to choose the institution and the sampled lectures (70). Simple
random sampling technique was used to select one hundred cadets
across the academy. Two instruments were used to elicit information
from both lecturers and cadets. These were job satisfaction and
motivation; and lecturers’ effectiveness Questionnaires. The
instruments were subjected to pilot testing and found to have
reliability coefficient of 0.69 and 0.71 respectively. The results of the
study revealed that there was a significance relationship among job
satisfaction, motivation and lecturers effectiveness in Nigeria Police
Academy. There was a significance relationship between job
satisfaction and lecturers’ effectiveness in Nigeria Police Academy
the cal r is 0.21 while the crt r is 0.19. at p
A Survey on E-Guide to Educational Tour Planning in Environmental Science among Standard Six Primary School Students the Ministry of Education Malaysia
This study aims to assess the students' needs for the
tour planning e-guide. The study is developing on the contribution
and importance of the Educational Tour Planning Guide (ETP) is a
multimedia course ware as one of the effective methods in teaching
and learning of environmental science among the students in primary
schools of the Ministry of Education, Malaysia. It is to provide the
student with knowledge and experience about tourism, environmental
science activities and process. E-guide to ETP also hopes to
strengthen the student understanding toward the subject learn in the
tourism environmental science. In order to assess the student's needs
on the e-Guide to Educational Tour Planning in Environmental
Science, the study has produced a similar e-Guide to ETP in the form
as a course ware to be tested during the study. The study has involved
several steps in order to be completed. It is such as the formulation of
the problem, the review of the literature, the formulation of the study
methodology, the production of the e-Guide to ETP, field survey and
finally the analyses and discussion made on the data gathered during
the study. The survey has involved 100 respondents among the
students in standard six primary schools in Kluang Johor. Through
the findings, the study indicates that the current tested product is
acceptable among the students in learning environmental science as a
guide to plan for the tour. The findings also show a slight difference
between the respondents who are using the e-Guide to ETP, and those
who are not on the basis of the e-Guide to ETP results. Due the
important for the study, the researcher hopes to be having a fair
discussion and excellence, recommendation for the development of
the product of the current study. This report is written also important
to provide a written reference for the future related study.
Image Analysis for Obturator Foramen Based on Marker-Controlled Watershed Segmentation and Zernike Moments
Obturator Foramen is a specific structure in Pelvic
bone images and recognition of it is a new concept in medical image
processing. Moreover, segmentation of bone structures such as
Obturator Foramen plays an essential role for clinical research in
orthopedics. In this paper, we present a novel method to analyze the
similarity between the substructures of the imaged region and a hand
drawn template as a preprocessing step for computation of Pelvic
bone rotation on hip radiographs. This method consists of integrated
usage of Marker-controlled Watershed segmentation and Zernike
moment feature descriptor and it is used to detect Obturator Foramen
accurately. Marker-controlled Watershed segmentation is applied to
separate Obturator Foramen from the background effectively. Then,
Zernike moment feature descriptor is used to provide matching
between binary template image and the segmented binary image for
final extraction of Obturator Foramens. Finally, Pelvic bone rotation
rate calculation for each hip radiograph is performed automatically to
select and eliminate hip radiographs for further studies which depend
on Pelvic bone angle measurements. The proposed method is tested
on randomly selected 100 hip radiographs. The experimental results
demonstrated that the proposed method is able to segment Obturator
Foramen with 96% accuracy.
Patients’ Perceptions of Receiving a Diagnosis of a Hematological Malignancy, Following the SPIKES Protocol
Objective: Sharing devastating news with patients is
often considered the most difficult task of doctors. This study aimed
to explore patients’ perceptions of receiving bad news including
which features improve the experience and which areas need refining. Methods: A questionnaire was written based on the steps of the
SPIKES model for breaking bad new. 20 patients receiving treatment
for a hematological malignancy completed the questionnaire. Results: Overall, the results are promising as most patients praised
their consultation. ‘Poor’ was more commonly rated by women and
participants aged 45-64. The main differences between the ‘excellent’
and ‘poor’ consultations include the doctor’s sensitivity and checking
the patients’ understanding. Only 35% of patients were asked their
existing knowledge and 85% of consultations failed to discuss the
impact of the diagnosis on daily life. Conclusion: This study agreed with the consensus of existing
literature. The commended aspects include consultation set-up and
information given. Areas patients felt needed improvement include
doctors determining the patient’s existing knowledge and checking
new information has been understood. Doctors should also explore
how the diagnosis will affect the patient’s life. With a poorer
prognosis, doctors should work on conveying appropriate hope. The
study was limited by a small sample size and potential recall bias.
Public Private Partnership for Infrastructure Projects: Mapping the Key Risks
In many countries, governments have been promoting the involvement of private sector entities to enter into long-term agreements for the development and delivery of large infrastructure projects, with a focus on overcoming the limitations upon public fund of the traditional approach. The involvement of private sector through public private partnerships (PPP) brings in new capital investments, value for money and additional risks to handle. Worldwide research studies have shown that an objective, systematic, reliable and useroriented risk assessment process and an optimal allocation mechanism among different stakeholders is crucial to the successful completion. In this framework, this paper, which is the first stage of a research study, aims to identify the main risks for the delivery of PPP projects. A review of cross-countries research projects and case studies was performed to map the key risks affecting PPP infrastructure delivery. The matrix of mapping offers a summary of the frequency of factors, clustered in eleven categories: construction, design, economic, legal, market, natural, operation, political, project finance, project selection and relationship. Results will highlight the most critical risk factors, and will hopefully assist the project managers in directing the managerial attention in the further stages of risk allocation.
Impact Assessment of Credit Policy and Medical Credit Facility (MCF) on Nigerian Private Sector Health Market: Evidence from Eight Nigerian States
A teeming set of doctors that graduated from various
universities within and outside Nigeria with the hope of practicing in
the country, has their hope shattered because of poor financing, lack
of medical equipments and a very weak healthcare systems. Such
hydra headed challenges, allows room for quackery which
increasingly contributes to the cause of mortality in Nigeria. With a
view of reversing the challenges of healthcare delivery and financing
in Nigeria, African Health Market for Equity (AHME), a project
funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates foundation [With contribution
from Department For International Development (DFID)] and
currently implemented in three African Countries (Nigeria, Kenya
and Ghana) over a Five (5) year period supports the healthcare sector
via Medical credit fund (MCF). The study examines the impact of
credit policy and medical credit funding on Nigerian health market.
Ordinary least square analysis, correlation and granger causality tests
were employed to measure the extent to which the Nigerian
healthcare market has been influenced. Medical credit fund
significantly and positively influenced average monthly turnover of
private healthcare providers and Commercial bank’s lending rate had
a weak relationship with access to credit/approved loans (13.46%).
The programme has so far made 13.91% progress, which is very
poor, considering the minimum targeted private health care providers
(437.6) and expected number of loan approvals (180.4) for the two
years. Medical credit policy in Nigeria should be revised to include
private healthcare providers in rural area for more positive impact
and increased returns. Good brand advert and sensitization of the
programme to stakeholders and health pressure group, and an
extension of the programme beyond five years is necessary to better
address the issues raised in the study.