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Sample records for achieve improved understanding

  1. Four Cornerstones of Calibration Research: Why Understanding Students' Judgments Can Improve Their Achievement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dunlosky, John; Thiede, Keith W.

    2013-01-01

    The target articles make significant advances in our understanding of students' judgments of their cognitive processes and products. In general, the advances are relative to a subset of common themes, which we call the four cornerstones of research on metacognitive judgments. We discuss how the target articles build on these cornerstones (judgment…

  2. Improving Educational Achievement.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    New York University Education Quarterly, 1979

    1979-01-01

    This is a slightly abridged version of the report of the National Academy of Education panel, convened at the request of HEW Secretary Joseph Califano and Assistant Secretary for Education Mary F. Berry, to study recent declines in student achievement and methods of educational improvement. (SJL)

  3. Conceptual Alignment: How Brains Achieve Mutual Understanding.

    PubMed

    Stolk, Arjen; Verhagen, Lennart; Toni, Ivan

    2016-03-01

    We share our thoughts with other minds, but we do not understand how. Having a common language certainly helps, but infants' and tourists' communicative success clearly illustrates that sharing thoughts does not require signals with a pre-assigned meaning. In fact, human communicators jointly build a fleeting conceptual space in which signals are a means to seek and provide evidence for mutual understanding. Recent work has started to capture the neural mechanisms supporting those fleeting conceptual alignments. The evidence suggests that communicators and addressees achieve mutual understanding by using the same computational procedures, implemented in the same neuronal substrate, and operating over temporal scales independent from the signals' occurrences.

  4. Employing Abductive Reasoning to Achieve Understanding

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-06-12

    future operational environment is described as volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous and composed of numerous dynamic and adaptive systems...environment, and winning the nation’s wars in this future environment, military professionals must cultivate an ability to achieve understanding...

  5. Control-value theory: using achievement emotions to improve understanding of motivation, learning, and performance in medical education: AMEE Guide No. 64.

    PubMed

    Artino, Anthony R; Holmboe, Eric S; Durning, Steven J

    2012-01-01

    In this AMEE Guide, we consider the emergent theoretical and empirical work on human emotion and how this work can inform the theory, research, and practice of medical education. In the Guide, we define emotion, in general, and achievement emotions, more specifically. We describe one of the leading contemporary theories of achievement emotions, control-value theory (Pekrun 2006), and we distinguish between different types of achievement emotions, their proximal antecedents, and their consequences for motivation, learning, and performance. Next, we review the empirical support for control-value theory from non-medical fields and suggest several important implications for educational practice. In this section, we highlight the importance of designing learning environments that foster a high degree of control and value for students. Finally, we end with a discussion of the need for more research on achievement emotions in medical education, and we propose several key research questions we believe will facilitate our understanding of achievement emotions and their impact on important educational outcomes.

  6. Can Judges Improve Academic Achievement?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Greene, Jay P.; Trivitt, Julie R.

    2008-01-01

    Over the last 3 decades student achievement has remained essentially unchanged in the United States, but not for a lack of spending. Over the same period a myriad of education reforms have been suggested and per-pupil spending has more than doubled. Since the 1990s the education reform attempts have frequently included judicial decisions to revise…

  7. Understanding how animal groups achieve coordinated movement.

    PubMed

    Herbert-Read, J E

    2016-10-01

    Moving animal groups display remarkable feats of coordination. This coordination is largely achieved when individuals adjust their movement in response to their neighbours' movements and positions. Recent advancements in automated tracking technologies, including computer vision and GPS, now allow researchers to gather large amounts of data on the movements and positions of individuals in groups. Furthermore, analytical techniques from fields such as statistical physics now allow us to identify the precise interaction rules used by animals on the move. These interaction rules differ not only between species, but also between individuals in the same group. These differences have wide-ranging implications, affecting how groups make collective decisions and driving the evolution of collective motion. Here, I describe how trajectory data can be used to infer how animals interact in moving groups. I give examples of the similarities and differences in the spatial and directional organisations of animal groups between species, and discuss the rules that animals use to achieve this organisation. I then explore how groups of the same species can exhibit different structures, and ask whether this results from individuals adapting their interaction rules. I then examine how the interaction rules between individuals in the same groups can also differ, and discuss how this can affect ecological and evolutionary processes. Finally, I suggest areas of future research.

  8. Understanding how animal groups achieve coordinated movement

    PubMed Central

    Herbert-Read, J. E.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Moving animal groups display remarkable feats of coordination. This coordination is largely achieved when individuals adjust their movement in response to their neighbours' movements and positions. Recent advancements in automated tracking technologies, including computer vision and GPS, now allow researchers to gather large amounts of data on the movements and positions of individuals in groups. Furthermore, analytical techniques from fields such as statistical physics now allow us to identify the precise interaction rules used by animals on the move. These interaction rules differ not only between species, but also between individuals in the same group. These differences have wide-ranging implications, affecting how groups make collective decisions and driving the evolution of collective motion. Here, I describe how trajectory data can be used to infer how animals interact in moving groups. I give examples of the similarities and differences in the spatial and directional organisations of animal groups between species, and discuss the rules that animals use to achieve this organisation. I then explore how groups of the same species can exhibit different structures, and ask whether this results from individuals adapting their interaction rules. I then examine how the interaction rules between individuals in the same groups can also differ, and discuss how this can affect ecological and evolutionary processes. Finally, I suggest areas of future research. PMID:27707862

  9. Achieve inventory reduction and improve customer service?

    PubMed

    Moody, M C

    2000-05-01

    Is it really possible to achieve significant reductions in your manufacturing inventories while improving customer service? If you really want to achieve significant inventory reductions, focus on the root causes, and develop countermeasures and a work plan, to execute your countermeasures. Include measurements for recording your progress, and deploy your countermeasures until they are no longer required, or until new ones are needed.

  10. Exemplar pediatric collaborative improvement networks: achieving results.

    PubMed

    Billett, Amy L; Colletti, Richard B; Mandel, Keith E; Miller, Marlene; Muething, Stephen E; Sharek, Paul J; Lannon, Carole M

    2013-06-01

    A number of pediatric collaborative improvement networks have demonstrated improved care and outcomes for children. Regionally, Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center Physician Hospital Organization has sustained key asthma processes, substantially increased the percentage of their asthma population receiving "perfect care," and implemented an innovative pay-for-performance program with a large commercial payor based on asthma performance measures. The California Perinatal Quality Care Collaborative uses its outcomes database to improve care for infants in California NICUs. It has achieved reductions in central line-associated blood stream infections (CLABSI), increased breast-milk feeding rates at hospital discharge, and is now working to improve delivery room management. Solutions for Patient Safety (SPS) has achieved significant improvements in adverse drug events and surgical site infections across all 8 Ohio children's hospitals, with 7700 fewer children harmed and >$11.8 million in avoided costs. SPS is now expanding nationally, aiming to eliminate all events of serious harm at children's hospitals. National collaborative networks include ImproveCareNow, which aims to improve care and outcomes for children with inflammatory bowel disease. Reliable adherence to Model Care Guidelines has produced improved remission rates without using new medications and a significant increase in the proportion of Crohn disease patients not taking prednisone. Data-driven collaboratives of the Children's Hospital Association Quality Transformation Network initially focused on CLABSI in PICUs. By September 2011, they had prevented an estimated 2964 CLABSI, saving 355 lives and $103,722,423. Subsequent improvement efforts include CLABSI reductions in additional settings and populations.

  11. Systems Thinking: A Skill to Improve Student Achievement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Thornton, Bill; Peltier, Gary; Perreault, George

    2004-01-01

    This article examines how schools can avoid barriers to systems thinking in relation to improving student achievement. It then illustrates common errors associated with non-systems thinking and recommends solutions. Educators who understand that schools are complex interdependent social systems can move their organizations forward. Unfortunately,…

  12. Improving Student Achievement in Math and Science

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sullivan, Nancy G.; Hamsa, Irene Schulz; Heath, Panagiota; Perry, Robert; White, Stacy J.

    1998-01-01

    As the new millennium approaches, a long anticipated reckoning for the education system of the United States is forthcoming, Years of school reform initiatives have not yielded the anticipated results. A particularly perplexing problem involves the lack of significant improvement of student achievement in math and science. Three "Partnership" projects represent collaborative efforts between Xavier University (XU) of Louisiana, Southern University of New Orleans (SUNO), Mississippi Valley State University (MVSU), and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), Stennis Space Center (SSC), to enhance student achievement in math and science. These "Partnerships" are focused on students and teachers in federally designated rural and urban empowerment zones and enterprise communities. The major goals of the "Partnerships" include: (1) The identification and dissemination of key indices of success that account for high performance in math and science; (2) The education of pre-service and in-service secondary teachers in knowledge, skills, and competencies that enhance the instruction of high school math and science; (3) The development of faculty to enhance the quality of math and science courses in institutions of higher education; and (4) The incorporation of technology-based instruction in institutions of higher education. These goals will be achieved by the accomplishment of the following objectives: (1) Delineate significant ?best practices? that are responsible for enhancing student outcomes in math and science; (2) Recruit and retain pre-service teachers with undergraduate degrees in Biology, Math, Chemistry, or Physics in a graduate program, culminating with a Master of Arts in Curriculum and Instruction; (3) Provide faculty workshops and opportunities for travel to professional meetings for dissemination of NASA resources information; (4) Implement methodologies and assessment procedures utilizing performance-based applications of higher order

  13. Understanding Possibilities and Limitations of Abstract Chemical Representations for Achieving Conceptual Understanding

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Corradi, David M. J.; Elen, Jan; Schraepen, Beno; Clarebout, Geraldine

    2014-01-01

    When learning with abstract and scientific multiple external representations (MERs), low prior knowledge learners are said to have difficulties in using these MERs to achieve conceptual understanding. Yet little is known about what these limitations precisely entail. In order to understand this, we presented 101 learners with low prior knowledge…

  14. Improving mental health outcomes: achieving equity through quality improvement

    PubMed Central

    Poots, Alan J.; Green, Stuart A.; Honeybourne, Emmi; Green, John; Woodcock, Thomas; Barnes, Ruth; Bell, Derek

    2014-01-01

    Objective To investigate equity of patient outcomes in a psychological therapy service, following increased access achieved by a quality improvement (QI) initiative. Design Retrospective service evaluation of health outcomes; data analysed by ANOVA, chi-squared and Statistical Process Control. Setting A psychological therapy service in Westminster, London, UK. Participants People living in the Borough of Westminster, London, attending the service (from either healthcare professional or self-referral) between February 2009 and May 2012. Intervention(s) Social marketing interventions were used to increase referrals, including the promotion of the service through local media and through existing social networks. Main Outcome Measure(s) (i) Severity of depression on entry using Patient Health Questionnaire-9 (PHQ9). (ii) Changes to severity of depression following treatment (ΔPHQ9). (iii) Changes in attainment of a meaningful improvement in condition assessed by a key performance indicator. Results Patients from areas of high deprivation entered the service with more severe depression (M = 15.47, SD = 6.75), compared with patients from areas of low (M = 13.20, SD = 6.75) and medium (M = 14.44, SD = 6.64) deprivation. Patients in low, medium and high deprivation areas attained similar changes in depression score (ΔPHQ9: M = −6.60, SD = 6.41). Similar proportions of patients achieved the key performance indicator across initiative phase and deprivation categories. Conclusions QI methods improved access to mental health services; this paper finds no evidence for differences in clinical outcomes in patients, regardless of level of deprivation, interpreted as no evidence of inequity in the service with respect to this outcome. PMID:24521701

  15. Toward achieving optimal response: understanding and managing antidepressant side effects

    PubMed Central

    Kelly, Karen; Posternak, Michael; Jonathan, E. Alpert

    2008-01-01

    The safety and tolerability of antidepressants have improved considerably over the past two decades, Nevertheless, antidepressant side effects are still common and problematic. The majority of patients treated with contemporary agents experience one or more bothersome side effects. These side effects often create barriers to achieving depressive remission, as well as to preventing relapse and recurrence. Clinicians tend to underestimate the prevalence of side effects, and as many as one quarter of patients discontinue their antidepressants because of difficult-to-tolerate side effects; others may continue on antidepressant therapy but experience diminished quality of life related to troublesome side effects. This article reviews the prevalence of side effects, the impact of side effects on treatment adherence, and methodological issues including the challenge of distinguishing side effects from residual depressive symptoms, discontinuation effects, and general medical problems. In addition, we address the most common side effects such as sexual dysfunction, gastrointestinal problems, sleep disturbance, apathy, and fatigue, and offer strategies for management that may help patients achieve optimal response to pharmacotherapy. PMID:19170398

  16. Improving Achievement through Problem-Based Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sungur, Semra; Tekkaya, Ceren; Geban, Omer

    2006-01-01

    In this study, the effect of problem-based learning on students' academic achievement and performance skills in a unit on the human excretory system was investigated. Sixty-one 10th grade students, from two full classes instructed by the same biology teacher, were involved in the study. Classes were randomly assigned as either the experimental or…

  17. Do Charter Schools Improve Student Achievement?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Clark, Melissa A.; Gleason, Philip M.; Tuttle, Christina Clark; Silverberg, Marsha K.

    2015-01-01

    This article presents findings from a lottery-based study of the impacts of a broad set of 33 charter middle schools across 13 states on student achievement. To estimate charter school impacts, we compare test score outcomes of students admitted to these schools through the randomized admissions lotteries with outcomes of applicants who were not…

  18. Proven Strategies for Improving Learning & Achievement.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brown, Duane

    The purpose of this book is to give student support personnel tools that: (1) will be recognized by educators as directly related to enhancing academic performance; (2) can be used with confidence that they will have the desired impact on achievement; and (3) are culturally sensitive. Chapters contain detailed presentation of the technology as…

  19. Improving Learner Achievement through Evaluation by Objectives.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sullivan, Howard J.

    Evaluation techniques were designed to improve learner performance through use of pre-specified popular instructional objectives. Current curriculum planning and evaluation practices are examined. Two common evaluation malpractices are: (1) the tendency to treat the content of the program as the most important criterion for evaluation, (2) the…

  20. Improving Student Achievement through Behavior Intervention.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Berry, Gina; And Others

    This report describes a program that was designed to identify and modify disruptive student behavior and improve academic performance. The targeted fifth grade class had been noted for inappropriate behavior and sporadic academic success, with problems documented by teacher observation surveys and self-reporting by students. Probable causes…

  1. Strategic School Funding for Improved Student Achievement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chambers, Jay G.; Brown, James R.; Levin, Jesse; Jubb, Steve; Harper, Dorothy; Tolleson, Ray; Manship, Karen

    2010-01-01

    This article features Strategic School Funding for Results (SSFR) project, a new joint initiative of the American Institutes for Research (AIR) and Pivot Learning Partners (PLP) aimed at improving school finance, human resources, and management systems in large urban school districts. The goal of the project is to develop and implement more…

  2. Improving Student Understanding of Spatial Ecology Statistics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hopkins, Robert, II; Alberts, Halley

    2015-01-01

    This activity is designed as a primer to teaching population dispersion analysis. The aim is to help improve students' spatial thinking and their understanding of how spatial statistic equations work. Students use simulated data to develop their own statistic and apply that equation to experimental behavioral data for Gambusia affinis (western…

  3. Improving Students' Understanding of Quantum Measurement

    SciTech Connect

    Zhu Guangtian; Singh, Chandralekha

    2010-10-24

    We describe the difficulties advanced undergraduate and graduate students have with quantum measurement. To reduce these difficulties, we have developed research-based learning tools such as the Quantum Interactive Learning Tutorial (QuILT) and peer instruction tools. A preliminary evaluation shows that these learning tools are effective in improving students' understanding of concepts related to quantum measurement.

  4. Improving Students' Understanding of Quantum Measurement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Guangtian; Singh, Chandralekha

    2010-10-01

    We describe the difficulties advanced undergraduate and graduate students have with quantum measurement. To reduce these difficulties, we have developed research-based learning tools such as the Quantum Interactive Learning Tutorial (QuILT) and peer instruction tools. A preliminary evaluation shows that these learning tools are effective in improving students' understanding of concepts related to quantum measurement.

  5. Understanding the Gap in Mathematics Achievement of Malaysian Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ismail, Noor Azina

    2009-01-01

    Of 46 countries that participated in the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study in 2003 (I. V. S. Mullis, M. O. Martin, E. J. Gonzalez, & S. J. Chrostowski, 2004), Malaysia was ranked 10th in international scores of mathematics achievement for 8th-grade students. The present author aimed to examine the importance of students'…

  6. Toward an Understanding of Achievement-Related Conflicts in Women

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Horner, Matina S.

    1972-01-01

    Identifies the motive to avoid success as an internal psychological representative of the dominant societal stereotype which views competence, independence, competition, and intellectual achievement as qualities basically inconsistent with femininity, even though positively related to masculinity and mental health. (Author/JM)

  7. Understanding Adolescent Gifted Girls with ADHD: Motivated and Achieving

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fugate, C. Matthew; Gentry, Marcia

    2016-01-01

    The manifestation of ADHD in girls who are gifted can place strains on motivation and academic performance as they enter their middle school years. The purpose of this collective case study research was to examine the lived experiences of five girls who are gifted with ADHD in order to gain an understanding of the array of coping mechanisms used…

  8. Understanding Millennials to Improve Recruiting Efficiency

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2011-03-24

    ABSTRACT The Millennial generation , born between 1982 and 2003, has been influenced by numerous events in their developmental years such as the 9/11...characteristics of the Millennial generation and the interrelationship with other generations in an effort to improve U.S. Army recruiting efficiencies... Millennials . Recruiting is a “people” business and the more USAREC leaders and recruiters understand generational interrelationships, influences, and

  9. From the Achievement Gap to the Education Debt: Understanding Achievement in U.S. Schools

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ladson-Billings, Gloria

    2006-01-01

    The "achievement gap" is one of the most talked-about issues in U.S. education. The term refers to the disparities in standardized test scores between Black and White, Latina/o and White, and recent immigrant and White students. This article argues that a focus on the gap is misplaced. Instead, we need to look at the "education…

  10. Improving student understanding of quantum mechanics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Singh, Chandralekha

    2015-04-01

    Learning quantum mechanics is challenging for many students. We are investigating the difficulties that upper-level students have in learning quantum mechanics. To help improve student understanding of quantum concepts, we are developing quantum interactive learning tutorials (QuILTs) and tools for peer-instruction. Many of the QuILTs employ computer simulations to help students visualize and develop better intuition about quantum phenomena. We will discuss the common students' difficulties and research-based tools we are developing to bridge the gap between quantitative and conceptual aspects of quantum mechanics and help students develop a solid grasp of quantum concepts. Support from the National Science Foundation is gratefully acknowledged.

  11. Children's understanding of area concepts: development, curriculum and educational achievement.

    PubMed

    Bond, Trevor G; Parkinson, Kellie

    2010-01-01

    As one part of a series of studies undertaken to investigate the contribution of developmental attributes of learners to school learning, a representative sample of forty-two students (age from 5 years and 3 months to 13 years and 1 month) was randomly selected from a total student population of 142 students at a small private primary school in northern Australia. Those children's understandings of area concepts taught during the primary school years were assessed by their performance in two testing situations. The first consisted of a written classroom test of ability to solve area problems with items drawn directly from school texts, school examinations and other relevant curriculum documents. The second, which focused more directly on each child's cognitive development, was an individual interview for each child in which four "area" tasks such as the Meadows and Farmhouse Experiment taken from Chapter 11 of The Child's Conception of Geometry (Piaget, Inhelder and Szeminska, 1960, pp. 261-301) were administered. Analysis using the Rasch Partial Credit Model provided a finely detailed quantitative description of the developmental and learning progressions revealed in the data. It is evident that the school mathematics curriculum does not satisfactorily match the learner's developmental sequence at some key points. Moreover, the children's ability to conserve area on the Piagetian tasks, rather than other learner characteristics, such as age and school grade seems to be a precursor for complete success on the mathematical test of area. The discussion focuses on the assessment of developmental (and other) characteristics of school-aged learners and suggests how curriculum and school organization might better capitalize on such information in the design and sequencing of learning experiences for school children. Some features unique to the Rasch family of measurement models are held to have special significance in elucidating the development/attainment nexus.

  12. Science Achievement for All: Improving Science Performance and Closing Achievement Gaps

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jackson, Julie K.; Ash, Gwynne

    2012-11-01

    This article addresses the serious and growing need to improve science instruction and science achievement for all students. We will describe the results of a 3-year study that transformed science instruction and student achievement at two high-poverty ethnically diverse public elementary schools in Texas. The school-wide intervention included purposeful planning, inquiry science instruction, and contextually rich academic science vocabulary development. In combination, these instructional practices rapidly improved student-science learning outcomes and narrowed achievement gaps across diverse student populations.

  13. How Much Can Spatial Training Improve STEM Achievement?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stieff, Mike; Uttal, David

    2015-01-01

    Spatial training has been indicated as a possible solution for improving Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) achievement and degree attainment. Advocates for this approach have noted that the correlation between spatial ability and several measures of STEM achievement suggests that spatial training should focus on improving…

  14. Improving Literacy Achievement: An Effective Approach to Continuous Progress

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Haley, Carolyn E.

    2007-01-01

    Billions of dollars are spent searching for programs and strategic plans that will prove to be the panacea for improving literacy achievement. With all of the experimental and researched programs implemented in school districts, the overall results are still at a minimum and many improvement gains have been short term. This book focuses on…

  15. Does Children's Academic Achievement Improve when Single Mothers Marry?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wagmiller, Robert L., Jr.; Gershoff, Elizabeth; Veliz, Philip; Clements, Margaret

    2010-01-01

    Promoting marriage, especially among low-income single mothers with children, is increasingly viewed as a promising public policy strategy for improving developmental outcomes for disadvantaged children. Previous research suggests, however, that children's academic achievement either does not improve or declines when single mothers marry. In this…

  16. An Action Plan for Improving Mediocre or Stagnant Student Achievement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Redmond, Kimberley B.

    2013-01-01

    Although all of the schools in the target school system adhere to a school improvement process, achievement scores remain mediocre or stagnant within the overseas school in Italy that serves children of United States armed service members. To address this problem, this study explored the target school's improvement process to discover how…

  17. Improving students' understanding of quantum mechanics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Guangtian

    2011-12-01

    Learning physics is challenging at all levels. Students' difficulties in the introductory level physics courses have been widely studied and many instructional strategies have been developed to help students learn introductory physics. However, research shows that there is a large diversity in students' preparation and skills in the upper-level physics courses and it is necessary to provide scaffolding support to help students learn advanced physics. This thesis explores issues related to students' common difficulties in learning upper-level undergraduate quantum mechanics and how these difficulties can be reduced by research-based learning tutorials and peer instruction tools. We investigated students' difficulties in learning quantum mechanics by administering written tests and surveys to many classes and conducting individual interviews with a subset of students. Based on these investigations, we developed Quantum Interactive Learning Tutorials (QuILTs) and peer instruction tools to help students build a hierarchical knowledge structure of quantum mechanics through a guided approach. Preliminary assessments indicate that students' understanding of quantum mechanics is improved after using the research-based learning tools in the junior-senior level quantum mechanics courses. We also designed a standardized conceptual survey that can help instructors better probe students' understanding of quantum mechanics concepts in one spatial dimension. The validity and reliability of this quantum mechanics survey is discussed.

  18. Understanding Conscientiousness and Its Role in Improved Student Achievement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Best, Jane; Dunlap, Allison

    2014-01-01

    In today's rapidly changing global economy, "21st century skills" means much more than proficiency in basic academic subjects. One of the most important noncognitive competencies for student success is conscientiousness, which encompasses traits such as perseverance, self-regulation, resilience, and responsibility. Researchers have found…

  19. Human Physiology: Improving Students' Achievements through Intelligent Studyware.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dori, Yehudit J.; Yochim, Jerome M.

    1994-01-01

    A studyware comprising a set of interconnected modules on human physiology has been developed and used to improve undergraduate students' achievements. Study results show the scores of students who used the optional computer laboratory sessions were enhanced over those who did not use the studyware. Presents examples from the modules. (LZ)

  20. DOD Joint Bases: Management Improvements Needed to Achieve Greater Efficiencies

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2012-11-01

    Joint Bases Realign Fort Eustis, VA, by relocating the installation management functions to Langley AFB, VA. Realign Fort Story , VA, by...the installation management functions to L·mglcy AFB, VA. Realign Fort Story , VA, by relocating the installation management functions to Commander...DOD JOINT BASES Management Improvements Needed to Achieve Greater Efficiencies Report to Congressional Addressees

  1. Using Students' Cultural Heritage to Improve Academic Achievement in Writing

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mendez, Gilbert

    2006-01-01

    This article discusses an approach to teaching used at Calexico Unified School District, a California-Mexican border high school, by a group of teachers working to make teaching and learning more relevant to Chicano and Mexican students' lives and to improve their academic achievement in writing. An off-shoot of a training program for English…

  2. New Directions in Social Psychological Interventions to Improve Academic Achievement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wilson, Timothy D.; Buttrick, Nicholas R.

    2016-01-01

    Attempts to improve student achievement typically focus on changing the educational environment (e.g., better schools, better teachers) or on personal characteristics of students (e.g., intelligence, self-control). The 6 articles in this special issue showcase an additional approach, emanating from social psychology, which focuses on students'…

  3. Understanding nursing 'nous' in the context of service improvements.

    PubMed

    Price, Bob

    2013-07-01

    Nurse managers face the challenges of how best to improve healthcare services in ways that can be evaluated readily by patients and that engage nurses. They also need to demonstrate how staff resource has been successfully deployed. This article ventures that a better understanding of 'nous' - the organisational ability of nurses to combine skills to clear purpose and patient benefit - may assist nurse managers to achieve these aims. It explores what staff nous consists of and examines critically more traditional modes of thinking about staff as intellectual capital. The reader is shown how staff nous might feature in new patient evaluations of care, nursing staff appraisals and the design of care initiatives.

  4. Microalloying Boron Carbide with Silicon to Achieve Dramatically Improved Ductility

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-11-18

    Microalloying Boron Carbide with Silicon to Achieve Dramatically Improved Ductility Qi An and William A. Goddard, III* Materials and Process... Boron carbide (B4C) is a hard material whose value for extended engineering applications such as body armor; is limited by its brittleness under...Plasmonics, Optical Materials, and Hard Matter Superhard materials, such as diamond, cubic boron nitride,and boron carbide (B4C), exhibit many

  5. Improving semantic scene understanding using prior information

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Laddha, Ankit; Hebert, Martial

    2016-05-01

    Perception for ground robot mobility requires automatic generation of descriptions of the robot's surroundings from sensor input (cameras, LADARs, etc.). Effective techniques for scene understanding have been developed, but they are generally purely bottom-up in that they rely entirely on classifying features from the input data based on learned models. In fact, perception systems for ground robots have a lot of information at their disposal from knowledge about the domain and the task. For example, a robot in urban environments might have access to approximate maps that can guide the scene interpretation process. In this paper, we explore practical ways to combine such prior information with state of the art scene understanding approaches.

  6. Geometry-Related Children's Literature Improves the Geometry Achievement and Attitudes of Second-Grade Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McAndrew, Erica M.; Morris, Wendy L.; Fennell, Francis

    2017-01-01

    Use of mathematics-related literature can engage students' interest and increase their understanding of mathematical concepts. A quasi-experimental study of two second-grade classrooms assessed whether daily inclusion of geometry-related literature in the classroom improved attitudes toward geometry and achievement in geometry. Consistent with the…

  7. Soy Mujer!: A Case Study for Understanding Latina Achievement in Higher Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stephens, Elizabeth

    2012-01-01

    Latinas are one of fastest growing segments of the population in the United States, which clearly shows a need to better understand and support education for Latinas within higher education. This study sought to understand the process for and experience of Latinas' academic achievement within higher education. The study focused particularly on the…

  8. Improving science achievement at high-poverty urban middle schools

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ruby, Allen

    2006-11-01

    A large percentage of U.S. students attending high-poverty urban middle schools achieve low levels of science proficiency, posing significant challenges to their success in high school science and to national and local efforts to reform science education. Through its work in Philadelphia schools, the Center for Social Organization of Schools at Johns Hopkins University developed a teacher-support model to address variation in science curricula, lack of materials, and underprepared teachers that combined with initial low levels of proficiency block improvements in science achievement. The model includes a common science curriculum based on NSF-supported materials commercially available, ongoing teacher professional development built around day-to-day lessons, and regular in-class support of teachers by expert peer coaches. One cohort of students at three Philadelphia middle schools using the model was followed from the end of fourth grade through seventh grade. Their gains in science achievement and achievement levels were substantially greater than students at 3 matched control schools and the 23 district middle schools serving a similar student population. Under school-by-school comparisons, these results held for the two schools with adequate implementation. Using widely available materials and techniques, the model can be adopted and modified by school partners and districts.

  9. Understanding Mathematics Achievement: An Analysis of the Effects of Student and Family Factors

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Goforth, Kate; Noltemeyer, Amity; Patton, Jon; Bush, Kevin R.; Bergen, Doris

    2014-01-01

    Educators are increasingly recognising the importance of improving students' mathematics achievement. Much of the current research focuses on the impact of instructional variables on mathematics achievement. The goal of this study was to examine the influence of less researched variables--family and student factors. Participants were 747…

  10. Can achievement emotions be used to better understand motivation, learning, and performance in medical education?

    PubMed

    Artino, Anthony R; Holmboe, Eric S; Durning, Steven J

    2012-01-01

    In this article, we consider an emergent theory of human emotion. The overarching purpose of the article is to introduce medical education researchers to the notion of achievement emotions and provide a brief overview of how this work can inform the theory, research, and practice of medical education. First, we define achievement emotions and describe one of the leading contemporary theories of achievement emotions, control-value theory (Pekrun R. 2006. The control-value theory of achievement emotions: Assumptions, corollaries, and implications for educational research and practice. Educ Psychol Rev 18:315-341.). Next, we distinguish between different types of achievement emotions, their proximal causes, and their consequences for motivation, learning, and performance, and we discuss several implications for educational practice. Finally, we end with a call for more research on achievement emotions in medical education to facilitate our understanding of emotions and their impact on important educational outcomes.

  11. Understanding pharmacokinetics to improve tuberculosis treatment outcome

    PubMed Central

    Reynolds, Jonathan; Heysell, Scott K

    2014-01-01

    Introduction Tuberculosis (TB) remains the leading cause of death from a curable infectious disease; drug-resistant TB threatens to dismantle all prior gains in global control. Suboptimal circulating anti-TB drug concentrations can lead to lack of cure and acquired drug resistance. Areas covered This review will introduce pharmacokinetic parameters for key anti-TB drugs, as well as the indications and limitations of measuring these parameters in clinical practice. Current and novel methodologies for delivering anti-TB pharmacokinetic-pharmacodynamic data are highlighted and gaps in operational research described. Expert opinion Individual pharmacokinetic variability is commonplace, underappreciated and difficult to predict without therapeutic drug monitoring (TDM). Pharmacokinetic thresholds associated with poor TB treatment outcome in drug-susceptible TB have recently been described and may now guide the application of TDM, but require validation in a variety of settings and comorbidities. Dried blood spots for TDM and prepackaged multidrug plates for minimum inhibitory concentration testing will overcome barriers of accessibility and represent areas for innovation. Operationalizing pharmacokinetics has the potential to improve TB outcomes in the most difficult-to-treat forms of the disease such as multidrug resistance. Clinical studies in these areas are eagerly anticipated and we expect will better define the rational introduction of novel therapeutics. PMID:24597717

  12. College Students' Achievement and Understanding of Experimental and Theoretical Probability: The Role of Tasks

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Papaieronymou, Irini

    2012-01-01

    This study examined the role of particular tasks implemented through two instructional methods on college students' "achievement" and understanding of probability. A mixed methods design that utilized a pre-test and post-test was used. This included treatment and control groups, each comprised of students in three sections of an…

  13. Improving Student Achievement: A Study of High-Poverty Schools with Higher Student Achievement Outcomes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Butz, Stephen D.

    2012-01-01

    This research examined the education system at high-poverty schools that had significantly higher student achievement levels as compared to similar schools with lower student achievement levels. A multischool qualitative case study was conducted of the educational systems where there was a significant difference in the scores achieved on the…

  14. Memorandum of Understanding for Improving Environmental Management of Electronic Assets

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    This is a memorandum of understanding between the U.S. Postal Service, Department of Defense, Department of Energy, Department of Interior and EPA to improve the environmental management of the government's electronic assets.

  15. School Improvement for All: Reflections on the Achievement Gap.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Howard, Gary R.

    2002-01-01

    Asserts that three social dominance issues have caused and continue to perpetuate achievement disparities among poor and minority students: the assumption of rightness, the luxury of ignorance, and the legacy of privilege. Describes school district initiatives, leadership, and research findings related to overcoming this achievement gap. Contends…

  16. Evidence that Smaller Schools Do Not Improve Student Achievement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wainer, Howard; Zwerling, Harris L.

    2006-01-01

    If more small schools than "expected" are among the high achievers, then creating more small schools would raise achievement across the board, many proponents of small schools have argued. In this article, the authors challenge the faulty logic of such inferences. Many claims have been made about the advantages of smaller schools. One is…

  17. Improving Students' Understanding of Electricity and Magnetism

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Li, Jing

    2012-01-01

    Electricity and magnetism are important topics in physics. Research shows that students have many common difficulties in understanding concepts related to electricity and magnetism. However, research to improve students' understanding of electricity and magnetism is limited compared to introductory mechanics. This thesis explores issues…

  18. Statistics in Public Understanding of Science review: How to achieve high statistical standards?

    PubMed

    Crettaz von Roten, Fabienne

    2016-02-01

    This article proposes a checklist to improve statistical reporting in the manuscripts submitted to Public Understanding of Science. Generally, these guidelines will allow the reviewers (and readers) to judge whether the evidence provided in the manuscript is relevant. The article ends with other suggestions for a better statistical quality of the journal.

  19. Understanding and Reversing Underachievement, Low Achievement, and Achievement Gaps among High-Ability African American Males in Urban School Contexts

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ford, Donna Y.; Moore, James L., III

    2013-01-01

    This article focuses on the achievement gap, with attention devoted to underachievement and low achievement among African American males in urban school contexts. More specifically, the article explains problems and issues facing or confronting these Black male students in urban education settings. A central part of this discussion is grounded in…

  20. Using LGI experiments to achieve better understanding of pedestal-edge coupling in NSTX-U

    SciTech Connect

    Wang, Zhehui

    2015-02-23

    PowerPoint presentation. Latest advances in granule or dust injection technologies, fast and high-resolution imaging, together with micro-/nano-structured material fabrication, provide new opportunities to examine plasma-material interaction (PMI) in magnetic fusion environment. Some of our previous work in these areas is summarized. The upcoming LGI experiments in NSTX-U will shed new light on granular matter transport in the pedestal-edge region. In addition to particle control, these results can also be used for code validation and achieving better understanding of pedestal-edge coupling in fusion plasmas in both NSTX-U and others.

  1. Multiple intelligences and alternative teaching strategies: The effects on student academic achievement, conceptual understanding, and attitude

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baragona, Michelle

    The purpose of this study was to investigate the interactions between multiple intelligence strengths and alternative teaching methods on student academic achievement, conceptual understanding and attitudes. The design was a quasi-experimental study, in which students enrolled in Principles of Anatomy and Physiology, a developmental biology course, received lecture only, problem-based learning with lecture, or peer teaching with lecture. These students completed the Multiple Intelligence Inventory to determine their intelligence strengths, the Students' Motivation Toward Science Learning questionnaire to determine student attitudes towards learning in science, multiple choice tests to determine academic achievement, and open-ended questions to determine conceptual understanding. Effects of intelligence types and teaching methods on academic achievement and conceptual understanding were determined statistically by repeated measures ANOVAs. No significance occurred in academic achievement scores due to lab group or due to teaching method used; however, significant interactions between group and teaching method did occur in students with strengths in logical-mathematical, interpersonal, kinesthetic, and intrapersonal intelligences. Post-hoc analysis using Tukey HSD tests revealed students with strengths in logical-mathematical intelligence and enrolled in Group Three scored significantly higher when taught by problem-based learning (PBL) as compared to peer teaching (PT). No significance occurred in conceptual understanding scores due to lab group or due to teaching method used; however, significant interactions between group and teaching method did occur in students with strengths in musical, kinesthetic, intrapersonal, and spatial intelligences. Post-hoc analysis using Tukey HSD tests revealed students with strengths in logical-mathematical intelligence and enrolled in Group Three scored significantly higher when taught by lecture as compared to PBL. Students with

  2. The Role of Principal Leadership in Improving Student Achievement. Newsletter

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Center for Comprehensive School Reform and Improvement, 2005

    2005-01-01

    School and district leadership has been the focus of intense scrutiny in recent years as researchers try to define not only the qualities of effective leadership but the impact of leadership on the operation of schools, and even on student achievement. A recently published literature review entitled "How Leadership Influences Student Learning" …

  3. An Effective Way to Improve Mathematics Achievement in Urban Schools

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kim, Taik

    2010-01-01

    The local Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs (GEARUP) partnership serves 11 K-8 schools with the lowest achievement scores and the highest poverty rates in a large Midwestern urban district. Recently, GEARUP launched a specially designed teaching program, Mathematics Enhancement Group (MEG), for underachievers in…

  4. Improving Academic Achievement in Reading and Writing in Primary Grades.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hubbard, Trina; Newell, Michelle

    This study describes a program designed to increase academic achievement in reading and writing among first and second grade students in a rural, middle-income area. Evidence for the existence of the problem includes reading comprehension tests, observation checklists for reading skills and reading behaviors, and writing samples. Analysis of…

  5. Helping Students Improve Academic Achievement and School Success Behavior

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brigman, Greg; Campbell, Chari

    2003-01-01

    This article describes a study evaluating the impact of school-counselor-led interventions on student academic achievement and school success behavior. A group counseling and classroom guidance model called student success skills (SSS) was the primary intervention. The focus of the SSS model was on three sets of skills identified in several…

  6. Improving Secondary School Students' Achievement using Intrinsic Motivation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Albrecht, Erik; Haapanen, Rebecca; Hall, Erin; Mantonya, Michelle

    2009-01-01

    This report describes a program for increasing students' intrinsic motivation in an effort to increase academic achievement. The targeted population consisted of secondary level students in a middle to upper-middle class suburban area. The students of the targeted secondary level classes appeared to be disengaged from learning due to a lack of…

  7. Capacity Building for a School Improvement Program, Achievement Directed Leadership.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Graeber, Anna O.; And Others

    This report describes and evaluates efforts to enhance school districts' capacity to implement and institutionalize the monitoring and management system for an instructional leadership program called Achievement Directed Leadership (ADL). Chapter one introduces the report's methodology, limitations, and structure. Chapter two first states the…

  8. Improving Student Achievement through the Enhancement of Study Skills.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Smith, Marvin; Teske, Ralph; Gossmeyer, Matt

    This study described a program for improving students' study skills aimed at improving academic performance. The targeted population consisted of students in two public high schools and one parochial grade school in a medium-sized metropolitan area located in central Illinois. The lack of these skills by students at all levels had been…

  9. Partnering through Training and Practice to Achieve Performance Improvement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lyons, Paul R.

    2010-01-01

    This article presents a partnership effort among managers, trainers, and employees to spring to life performance improvement using the performance templates (P-T) approach. P-T represents a process model as well as a method of training leading to performance improvement. Not only does it add to our repertoire of training and performance management…

  10. Improving Practice through Scholarship: An Uncommon Record of Achievement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bers, Trudy

    2009-01-01

    In this article, the author writes from the perspective of a community college research practitioner, an institutional researcher whose daily work is intended primarily to affect policies, procedures and understanding of student learning and institutional effectiveness. The audience for this work is composed of faculty, administrators, staff,…

  11. Achieving improved cycle efficiency via pressure gain combustors

    SciTech Connect

    Gemmen, R.S.; Janus, M.C.; Richards, G.A.; Norton, T.S.; Rogers, W.A.

    1995-04-01

    As part of the Department of Energy`s Advanced Gas Turbine Systems Program, an investigation is being performed to evaluate ``pressure gain`` combustion systems for gas turbine applications. This paper presents experimental pressure gain and pollutant emission data from such combustion systems. Numerical predictions for certain combustor geometries are also presented. It is reported that for suitable aerovalved pulse combustor geometries studied experimentally, an overall combustor pressure gain of nearly 1 percent can be achieved. It is also shown that for one combustion system operating under typical gas turbine conditions, NO{sub x} and CO emmissions, are about 30 ppmv and 8 ppmv, respectively.

  12. Organizational management practices for achieving software process improvement

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kandt, Ronald Kirk

    2004-01-01

    The crisis in developing software has been known for over thirty years. Problems that existed in developing software in the early days of computing still exist today. These problems include the delivery of low-quality products, actual development costs that exceed expected development costs, and actual development time that exceeds expected development time. Several solutions have been offered to overcome out inability to deliver high-quality software, on-time and within budget. One of these solutions involves software process improvement. However, such efforts often fail because of organizational management issues. This paper discusses business practices that organizations should follow to improve their chances of initiating and sustaining successful software process improvement efforts.

  13. Improving International Research with Clinical Specimens: 5 Achievable Objectives

    PubMed Central

    LaBaer, Joshua

    2012-01-01

    Our increased interest in translational research has created a large demand for blood, tissue and other clinical samples, which find use in a broad variety of research including genomics, proteomics, and metabolomics. Hundreds of millions of dollars have been invested internationally on the collection, storage and distribution of samples. Nevertheless, many researchers complain in frustration about their inability to obtain relevant and/or useful samples for their research. Lack of access to samples, poor condition of samples, and unavailability of appropriate control samples have slowed our progress in the study of diseases and biomarkers. In this editorial, I focus on five major challenges that thwart clinical sample use for translational research and propose near term objectives to address them. They include: (1) defining our biobanking needs; (2) increasing the use of and access to standard operating procedures; (3) mapping inter-observer differences for use in normalizing diagnoses; (4) identifying natural internal protein controls; and (5) redefining the clinical sample paradigm by building partnerships with the public. In each case, I believe that we have the tools at hand required to achieve the objective within 5 years. Potential paths to achieve these objectives are explored. However we solve these problems, the future of proteomics depends on access to high quality clinical samples, collected under standardized conditions, accurately annotated and shared under conditions that promote the research we need to do. PMID:22998582

  14. Using Curriculum-Based Measurement to Improve Achievement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Clarke, Suzanne

    2009-01-01

    Response to intervention (RTI) is on the radar screen of most principals these days--finding out what it is, how it can improve teaching and learning, and what needs to be done to implement it effectively. One critical component of RTI that will require particular attention from principals is student progress monitoring, which is required in every…

  15. Improving Student Academic Achievement through Enhanced Communication Skills.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rivan, Christine A.; Weber, Annette M.

    This report describes a program implemented to improve inadequate student communication skills, specifically in the areas of listening, speaking, social, and emotional development. The targeted population consisted of first and second grade students in a middle class community, located in central Illinois. Evidence for the existence of the problem…

  16. Data as a Lever for Improving Instruction and Student Achievement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Simmons, Warren

    2012-01-01

    This commentary draws on the articles in this issue to underscore the importance of community engagement and districtwide capacity building as central to efforts to use data to inform accountability and choice, along with school and instructional improvement. The author cautions against treating data as an all-purpose tool absent adequate…

  17. Achieving Continuous Improvement: Theories that Support a System Change.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Armel, Donald

    Focusing on improvement is different than focusing on quality, quantity, customer satisfaction, and productivity. This paper discusses Open System Theory, and suggests ways to change large systems. Changing a system (meaning the way all the parts are connected) requires a considerable amount of data gathering and analysis. Choosing the proper…

  18. Improving At-Risk Learners' Understanding of Fractions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fuchs, Lynn S.; Schumacher, Robin F.; Long, Jessica; Namkung, Jessica; Hamlett, Carol L.; Cirino, Paul T.; Jordan, Nancy C.; Siegler, Robert; Gersten, Russell; Changas, Paul

    2013-01-01

    The purposes of this study were to investigate the effects of an intervention designed to improve at-risk 4th graders' understanding of fractions and to examine the processes by which effects occurred. The intervention focused more on the measurement interpretation of fractions; the control condition focused more on the part-whole interpretation…

  19. Can an understanding of transactional analysis improve postgraduate clinical supervision?

    PubMed

    Sivan, Manoj; McKimm, Judy; Held, Sam

    2011-01-01

    Clinical supervision in postgraduate medical training is vital in producing competent and safe health-care practitioners. Effective communication between supervisors and trainees at an interpersonal and professional level determines the quality of the supervision process. Transactional analysis, a theory of personality, can be used to enhance understanding of interpersonal interactions and improve the outcomes of clinical training.

  20. Peritoneal dialysis: how we can achieve improvement of PD penetration.

    PubMed

    Van Biesen, W

    2007-07-01

    Peritoneal dialysis (PD) is a well established renal replacement therapy (RRT). It appears to have some excellent properties as a first line RRT, as it preserves residual renal function, improves clearance of middle and larger solutes and preserves vascular access. To improve PD penetration, it is necessary to have a well established pre-dialysis programme, as information seems to be the clue in the choice and the success of PD. Furthermore, it is important that patients and nurses are well educated in the practice of PD. This reduces the need for hypertonic bags by better compliance with the salt restrictive diet, reduces exposure to dialysate per se by adapting the number and length of the dwells to the needs of the patient, and increases peritonitis-free survival, thus prolonging the survival of the peritoneal membrane. In addition, it is clear that the use of new low glucose degradation products and normal pH solutions will also improve the technical success of PD. The collaboration of industry with local health care providers could be a necessity in overcoming the costs induced by the import of dialysate solutions paid for in foreign currency.

  1. Achieving Millennium Development Goals for Health: Building Understanding, Trust and Capacity to Respond

    PubMed Central

    Larson, Heidi J.

    2007-01-01

    Biomedical interventions promise achievement of health-related Millennium Development Goals provided social-, capacity- and knowledge-based constraints to scaling up and reaching marginalized people at risk, are addressed, and balance between prevention and treatment is struck. We argue for a new approach: multi-stakeholder capacity building and learning for empowerment: MuSCLE. MuSCLE is used as a way to frame three systemic weaknesses in traditional health science and policy approaches: 1) a lack of engagement with people at risk to build a collective understanding of the contexts of health problems; 2) a lack of multi-criteria evaluation of alternative interventions; and 3) a lack of attention paid to integrated capacity building. The MuSCLE framework responds in three ways: 1) Participatory assessment of the ecological, socio-cultural, economic and political contexts of health, identifying priorities using risk and vulnerability science, and modeling drivers; 2) Selection among intervention alternatives that makes ecological, socio-cultural, economic and political tradeoffs transparent; and 3) Integrated capacity building for sustainable and adaptive interventions. Literature and field lessons support the argument, and guidelines are set down. A MuSCLE approach argues for a transformation in health science and policy in order to achieve Millennium Development Goals for health. PMID:17399849

  2. New Simulation Methods to Facilitate Achieving a Mechanistic Understanding of Basic Pharmacology Principles in the Classroom

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grover, Anita; Lam, Tai Ning; Hunt, C. Anthony

    2008-08-01

    We present a simulation tool to aid the study of basic pharmacology principles. By taking advantage of the properties of agent-based modeling, the tool facilitates taking a mechanistic approach to learning basic concepts, in contrast to the traditional empirical methods. Pharmacodynamics is a particular aspect of pharmacology that can benefit from use of such a tool: students are often taught a list of concepts and a separate list of parameters for mathematical equations. The link between the two can be elusive. While wet-lab experimentation is the proven approach to developing this link, in silico simulation can provide a means of acquiring important insight and understanding within a time frame and at a cost that cannot be achieved otherwise. We suggest that simulations and their representation of laboratory experiments in the classroom can become a key component in student achievement by helping to develop a student's positive attitude towards science and his or her creativity in scientific inquiry. We present results of two simulation experiments that validate against data taken from current literature. We follow with a classroom example demonstrating how this tool can be seamlessly integrated within the traditional pharmacology learning experience.

  3. Improving the public understanding of science: New initiatives.

    PubMed

    Scotchmoor, Judy; Thanukos, Anastasia; Potter, Sheri

    2009-10-01

    The United States may be on the brink of losing its global edge in science. Many American students are underprepared for and uninterested in the scientific and technical careers they may be asked to take on. Furthermore, these students, their teachers, and the broader public lack basic understandings of what science is and how it works, which may negatively impact their ability to make reasoned and informed decisions about science-related issues. We describe two unique and recently developed projects designed to help tackle these problems by improving public understanding of and interest in science. The Coalition on the Public Understanding of Science is a grassroots effort to lower the barriers between the scientific community and the public. It aims to inspire broad appreciation of science, inform the public about the nature and process of science, and make science accessible to everyone. Understanding Science is a web-based project that aims to improve teacher understanding of the nature of the scientific enterprise, to provide resources that encourage and enable kindergarten through undergraduate (K-16) teachers to reinforce the nature of science throughout their teaching, and to serve as a clear and accessible reference that accurately portrays the scientific endeavor. The botanical and broader scientific communities are invited to participate in these efforts.

  4. A University Engagement Model for Achieving Technology Adoption and Performance Improvement Impacts in Healthcare, Manufacturing, and Government

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McKinnis, David R.; Sloan, Mary Anne; Snow, L. David; Garimella, Suresh V.

    2014-01-01

    The Purdue Technical Assistance Program (TAP) offers a model of university engagement and service that is achieving technology adoption and performance improvement impacts in healthcare, manufacturing, government, and other sectors. The TAP model focuses on understanding and meeting the changing and challenging needs of those served, always…

  5. Understanding and Improving Knowledge Transactions in Command and Control

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2003-06-01

    6310 Greenwich Dr., Suite 200, San Diego, CA 92122 Fax: (858) 535-1665 ramoore@pacific-science.com hors: ald A. Moore1, Janel H. Schermerhorn ...Understanding and Improving K ald A. Moore, Janel H. Schermerhorn , Heath 6310 Greenwich Dr., Suite 200, San Diego, CA 92 Phone: (858) 535 , jscherm@pacific...Naval Research (ONR Introduction For example, sources must ions must be quickly and fully support als and teams produced and ent tasks and

  6. GLAMOR – OR HOW WE ACHIEVED A COMMON UNDERSTANDING ON THE DECREASE OF GLASS DISSOLUTION KINETICS

    SciTech Connect

    Van Iseghem, Pierre; Aerstens, Marc; Gin, Stephane; Deneele, Dimitri; Grambow, Bernd; Strachan, Denis M.; McGrail, B. Peter; Wicks, George G.

    2009-10-01

    The objective of the EC funded GLAMOR project was to achieve a common understanding of the processes that control the decrease of the dissolution rate of high-level waste glass in water when silica becomes saturated. Is the affinity controlled concept, or the protective layer concept dominating? The following steps were taken: (1) review of the literature, (2) selection of an experimental dataset, and selection of the models r(t) and GM2003, and (3) application by the GLAMOR partners of the models to the datasets. The main focus has been on dissolution tests in pure water at different values of surface to volume and pH. Some of the main conclusions were: (1) both affinity and protective layer concepts must be considered in the interpretation of the rate decreasing stage, (2) the residual dissolution rate observed beyond the silica saturation stage is far more important in view of the long-term performance of the glass, and deserves more attention in future R&D. GLAMOR also discussed in detail the modelling parameters such as the silica saturation concentration, the silica diffusion coefficient, the silica retention factor in the reaction layer, and the water diffusion coefficient.

  7. Supporting Lower-Achieving Seven- and Eight-Year-Old Children with Place Value Understandings

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bailey, Judy

    2015-01-01

    Children can sometimes appear to understand a concept such as place value without really having a deep understanding. Judy Bailey stresses the importance of listening carefully to children to identify their current understandings and then building on them systematically, using a range of materials, to promote a deep conceptual understanding. This…

  8. Motivation and Long-Term Language Achievement: Understanding Motivation to Persist in Foreign Language Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Smith, Laura Jeanne

    2009-01-01

    Achieving native-like proficiency in a foreign language is a long-term process; therefore, designing and implementing a plan for long-term language achievement may help more learners achieve their long-term language goals of fluency as well as related career goals. This study presents recommendations that may be incorporated into the college…

  9. Effects of Improvements in Interval Timing on the Mathematics Achievement of Elementary School Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Taub, Gordon E.; McGrew, Kevin S.; Keith, Timothy Z.

    2015-01-01

    This article examines the effect of improvements in timing/rhythmicity on mathematics achievement. A total of 86 participants attending 1st through 4th grades completed pre- and posttest measures of mathematics achievement from the Woodcock-Johnson III Tests of Achievement. Students in the experimental group participated in a 4-week intervention…

  10. Understanding plant response to nitrogen limitation for the improvement of crop nitrogen use efficiency.

    PubMed

    Kant, Surya; Bi, Yong-Mei; Rothstein, Steven J

    2011-02-01

    Development of genetic varieties with improved nitrogen use efficiency (NUE) is essential for sustainable agriculture. Generally, NUE can be divided into two parts. First, assimilation efficiency involves nitrogen (N) uptake and assimilation and second utilization efficiency involves N remobilization. Understanding the mechanisms regulating these processes is crucial for the improvement of NUE in crop plants. One important approach is to develop an understanding of the plant response to different N regimes, especially to N limitation, using various methods including transcription profiling, analysing mutants defective in their normal response to N limitation, and studying plants that show better growth under N-limiting conditions. One can then attempt to improve NUE in crop plants using the knowledge gained from these studies. There are several potential genetic and molecular approaches for the improvement of crop NUE discussed in this review. Increased knowledge of how plants respond to different N levels as well as to other environmental conditions is required to achieve this.

  11. Using Confirmatory Factor Analysis to Understand Executive Control in Preschool Children: Sources of Variation in Emergent Mathematic Achievement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bull, Rebecca; Espy, Kimberly Andrews; Wiebe, Sandra A.; Sheffield, Tiffany D.; Nelson, Jennifer Mize

    2011-01-01

    Latent variable modeling methods have demonstrated utility for understanding the structure of executive control (EC) across development. These methods are utilized to better characterize the relation between EC and mathematics achievement in the preschool period, and to understand contributing sources of individual variation. Using the sample and…

  12. Achieving Coherence in District Improvement: Managing the Relationship between the Central Office and Schools

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Johnson, Susan Moore; Marietta, Geoff; Higgins, Monica C.; Mapp, Karen L.; Grossman, Allen

    2015-01-01

    "Achieving Coherence in District Improvement" focuses on a problem of practice faced by educational leaders across the nation: how to effectively manage the relationship between the central office and schools. The book is based on a study of five large urban districts that have demonstrated improvement in student achievement. The…

  13. Long-Term Follow Up of CSRP: Understanding Students' Academic Achievement Post-Treatment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lennon, Jaclyn M.; Li-Grining, Christine; Raver, C. Cybele; Pess, Rachel A.

    2011-01-01

    In this poster presentation, the authors examine the impact of Chicago School Readiness Project (CSRP) on students' academic achievement in elementary school. First, they provide upper- and lower-bound estimates of the impact of CSRP on students' academic achievement, taking into account their subsequent nonrandom selection into higher versus…

  14. How Does Understanding by Design Influence Student Achievement in Eighth Grade Social Studies?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Noble, Charhonda L.

    2011-01-01

    In an age where more people place emphasis on global competition, it only seems right to have students meet achievement in all subjects equally. However, that is not the case with the content area of social studies. In recent years, many people have been alarmed at social studies test scores as measured by student achievement. It is the goal of…

  15. How Do Relationships Influence Student Achievement? Understanding Student Performance from a General, Social Psychological Standpoint

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Aspelin, Jonas

    2012-01-01

    This article explores the influence of relationships on student achievement by examining empirical evidence and by adopting a social psychological theory. Initially, the issue is addressed from a national, Swedish context. Thereafter, two general questions are raised: (1) What is the influence of relationships on student achievement, according to…

  16. Understanding Science Achievement Gaps by Race/Ethnicity and Gender in Kindergarten and First Grade

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Curran, F. Chris; Kellogg, Ann T.

    2016-01-01

    Disparities in science achievement across race and gender have been well documented in secondary and postsecondary school; however, the science achievement gap in the early years of elementary school remains understudied. We present findings from the recently released Early Childhood Longitudinal Study, Kindergarten Class of 2010-2011 that…

  17. Improving Low-Achieving Schools: Building State Capacity to Support School Improvement through Race to the Top

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Childs, Joshua; Russell, Jennifer Lin

    2017-01-01

    Improving low-achieving schools is a critical challenge facing urban education. Recent national policy shifts have pressed states to take an expanded role in school improvement efforts. In 2009, a federal grant competition called Race to the Top (RttT) compelled states to improve their capacity to implement ambitious education reform agendas.…

  18. Improvements in Professional Development Program Participants' Understandings about Inclusive Teaching

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Metevier, A. J.; Hunter, L.; Goza, B. K.; Raschke, L. M.; Seagroves, S.

    2010-12-01

    A major emphasis of the Center for Adaptive Optics Professional Development Program (PDP) is training early-career scientists and engineers to teach more inclusively as well as more effectively. To this end, the PDP includes workshops on diversity and equity, and PDP participants are explicitly encouraged to weave inclusive instructional strategies into the inquiry laboratory activities they design and teach. In an initial effort to gauge the effectiveness of the PDP's diversity and equity training, we have analyzed 2008 and 2009 PDP participants' responses to a survey knowledge question that asks them to briefly describe how they would engage a diverse undergraduate student population through their teaching and research. Each participant answered the survey question before any PDP training, as well as after a series of intensive PDP workshops. We developed a rubric to score and analyze participants' pre- and post-workshop responses, and have found that their response scores improve significantly after PDP training. This indicates that PDP training does improve participants' understandings about how to teach inclusively. Furthermore, survey respondents who participated in the PDP in both 2008 and 2009 showed little decrease in response scores between years, but continued increases with continued training. In this paper, we detail our rubric development, survey response scoring, analysis, and results, as well as the implications our results have had for refining our goals for PDP participants and for further improving PDP workshops.

  19. Improving Students' Understanding of Lock-In Amplifiers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    DeVore, Seth; Gauthier, Alexandre; Levy, Jeremy; Chandralekha, Singh

    2014-03-01

    A lock-in amplifier is a versatile instrument frequently used in physics research. However, many students struggle with the basic operating principles of a lock-in amplifier which can lead to a variety of difficulties. To improve students' understanding, we have been developing and evaluating a research-based tutorial which makes use of a computer simulation of a lock-in amplifier. The tutorial is based on a field-tested approach in which students realize their difficulties after predicting the outcome of simulated experiments involving a lock-in amplifier and check their predictions using the simulated lock-in amplifier. Then, the tutorial guides and helps students develop a coherent understanding of the basics of a lock-in amplifier. The tutorial development involved interviews with physics faculty members and graduate students and iteration of many versions of the tutorial with professors and graduate students. The student difficulties and the development and assessment of the research-based tutorial are discussed. We thank National Science Foundation for award NSF-1124131.

  20. How community ecology can improve our understanding of cholera dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Constantin de Magny, Guillaume; Hasan, Nur A.; Roche, Benjamin

    2013-01-01

    Understanding the seasonal emergence and reemergence of cholera is challenging due to the complex dynamics of different protagonists. The abundance of Vibrio cholerae, the causative agent of cholera and a natural inhabitant of aquatic environments, fluctuates according to abiotic, and biotic factors. Among the biotic factors, the zooplankton community dynamics has been suggested to play a pivotal role in the survival, persistence, and natural competence of V. cholerae. However, factors regulating V. cholerae population structure and seasonal dynamics are still not fully understood. Investigation of the temporal shifts and variability in aquatic community composition in relation to the occurrence or abundance of V. cholerae appears very promising yet remained underexplored. Recent advances in metagenomics, facilitated by high-throughput ultra deep sequencing, have greatly improved our ability for a broader and deeper exploration of microbial communities including an understanding of community structure, function, as well as inter- and intra-specific competitions. Here, we discuss possible areas of research focusing how combination of community ecology and metagenomic approaches could be applied to study the cholera system. PMID:24765090

  1. Understanding the Elements of Operational Reliability: A Key for Achieving High Reliability

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Safie, Fayssal M.

    2010-01-01

    This viewgraph presentation reviews operational reliability and its role in achieving high reliability through design and process reliability. The topics include: 1) Reliability Engineering Major Areas and interfaces; 2) Design Reliability; 3) Process Reliability; and 4) Reliability Applications.

  2. The role of household chaos in understanding relations between early poverty and children's academic achievement

    PubMed Central

    Mokrova, Irina; Vernon-Feagans, Lynne; Willoughby, Michael; Pan, Yi

    2016-01-01

    The following prospective longitudinal study used an epidemiological sample (N = 1,236) to consider the potential mediating role of early cumulative household chaos (6–58 months) on associations between early family income poverty (6 months) and children's academic achievement in kindergarten. Two dimensions of household chaos, disorganization and instability, were examined as mediators. Results revealed that, in the presence of household disorganization (but not instability) and relevant covariates, income poverty was no longer directly related to academic achievement. Income poverty was, however, positively related to household disorganization, which was, in turn, associated with lower academic achievement. Study results are consistent with previous research indicating that household chaos conveys some of the adverse longitudinal effects of income poverty on children's outcomes and extend previous findings specifically to academic achievement in early childhood. PMID:27330247

  3. Understanding the role of opinion leaders in improving clinical effectiveness.

    PubMed

    Locock, L; Dopson, S; Chambers, D; Gabbay, J

    2001-09-01

    We present findings from evaluations of two government-funded initiatives exploring the transfer of research evidence into clinical practice--the PACE Programme (Promoting Action on Clinical Effectiveness), and the Welsh Clinical Effectiveness Initiative National Demonstration Projects. We situate the findings within the context of available research evidence from healthcare and other settings on the role of opinion leaders or product champions in innovation and change--evidence which leaves a number of problems and unanswered questions. A major concern is the difficulty of achieving a single replicable description of what opinion leaders are and what they do--subjective understandings of their role differ from one setting to another, and we identify a range of very different types of opinion leadership. What makes someone a credible and influential authority is derived not just from their own personality and skills and the dynamic of their relationship with other individuals, but also from other context-specific factors. We examine the question of expert versus peer opinion leaders, and the potential for these different categories to be more or less influential at different stages in the innovation process. An often neglected area is the impact of opinion leaders who are ambivalent or hostile to an innovation. Finally, we note that the interaction between individual opinion leaders and the collective process of negotiating a change and reorienting professional norms remains poorly understood. This raises a number of methodological concerns which need to be considered in further research in this area.

  4. Using confirmatory factor analysis to understand executive control in preschool children: sources of variation in emergent mathematic achievement.

    PubMed

    Bull, Rebecca; Espy, Kimberly Andrews; Wiebe, Sandra A; Sheffield, Tiffany D; Nelson, Jennifer Mize

    2011-07-01

    Latent variable modeling methods have demonstrated utility for understanding the structure of executive control (EC) across development. These methods are utilized to better characterize the relation between EC and mathematics achievement in the preschool period, and to understand contributing sources of individual variation. Using the sample and battery of laboratory tasks described in Wiebe, Espy and Charak (2008), latent EC was related strongly to emergent mathematics achievement in preschool, and was robust after controlling for crystallized intellectual skills. The relation between crystallized skills and emergent mathematics differed between girls and boys, although the predictive association between EC and mathematics did not. Two dimensions of the child 's social environment contributed to mathematics achievement: social network support through its relation to EC and environmental stressors through its relation with crystallized skills. These findings underscore the need to examine the dimensions, mechanisms, and individual pathways that influence the development of early competence in basic cognitive processes that underpin early academic achievement.

  5. Combinatorial mutagenesis and selection to understand and improve yeast promoters.

    PubMed

    Berg, Laila; Strand, Trine Aakvik; Valla, Svein; Brautaset, Trygve

    2013-01-01

    Microbial promoters are important targets both for understanding the global gene expression and developing genetic tools for heterologous expression of proteins and complex biosynthetic pathways. Previously, we have developed and used combinatorial mutagenesis methods to analyse and improve bacterial expression systems. Here, we present for the first time an analogous strategy for yeast. Our model promoter is the strong and inducible P AOX1 promoter in methylotrophic Pichia pastoris. The Zeocin resistance gene was applied as a valuable reporter for mutant P AOX1 promoter activity, and we used an episomal plasmid vector to ensure a constant reporter gene dosage in the yeast host cells. This novel design enabled direct selection for colonies of recombinant cells with altered Zeocin tolerance levels originating solely from randomly introduced point mutations in the P AOX1 promoter DNA sequence. We demonstrate that this approach can be used to select for P AOX1 promoter variants with abolished glucose repression in large mutant libraries. We also selected P AOX1 promoter variants with elevated expression level under induced conditions. The properties of the selected P AOX1 promoter variants were confirmed by expressing luciferase as an alternative reporter gene. The tools developed here should be useful for effective screening, characterization, and improvement of any yeast promoters.

  6. Understanding motivational structures that differentially predict engagement and achievement in middle school science

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Christine S.; Hayes, Kathryn N.; Seitz, Jeffery; DiStefano, Rachelle; O'Connor, Dawn

    2016-01-01

    Middle school has been documented as the period in which a drop in students' science interest and achievement occurs. This trend indicates a lack of motivation for learning science; however, little is known about how different aspects of motivation interact with student engagement and science learning outcomes. This study examines the relationships among motivational factors, engagement, and achievement in middle school science (grades 6-8). Data were obtained from middle school students in the United States (N = 2094). The theoretical relationships among motivational constructs, including self-efficacy, and three types of goal orientations (mastery, performance approach, and performance avoid) were tested. The results showed that motivation is best modeled as distinct intrinsic and extrinsic factors; lending evidence that external, performance based goal orientations factor separately from self-efficacy and an internal, mastery based goal orientation. Second, a model was tested to examine how engagement mediated the relationships between intrinsic and extrinsic motivational factors and science achievement. Engagement mediated the relationship between intrinsic motivation and science achievement, whereas extrinsic motivation had no relationship with engagement and science achievement. Implications for how classroom practice and educational policy emphasize different student motivations, and in turn, can support or hinder students' science learning are discussed.

  7. What Districts Can Do To Improve Instruction and Achievement in All Schools.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Togneri, Wendy

    2003-01-01

    A study of five high-poverty districts making strides in improving student achievement revealed that these districts focused on systemwide strategies including new approaches to professional development; making decisions based on data, not instinct; and redefining leadership roles. (MLF)

  8. Improving Student Motivation and Achievement in Mathematics through Teaching to the Multiple Intelligences.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bednar, Janet; Coughlin, Jane; Evans, Elizabeth; Sievers, Theresa

    This action research project described strategies for improving student motivation and achievement in mathematics through multiple intelligences. The targeted population consisted of kindergarten, third, fourth, and fifth grade students located in two major Midwestern cities. Documentation proving low student motivation and achievement in…

  9. Effective Strategies Urban Superintendents Utilize That Improve the Academic Achievement for African American Males

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Prioleau, Lushandra

    2013-01-01

    This study examined the effective strategies, resources, and programs urban superintendents utilize to improve the academic achievement for African-American males. This study employed a mixed-methods approach to answer the following research questions regarding urban superintendents and the academic achievement for African-American males: What…

  10. DOD SCHOOLS: Additional Reporting Could Improve Accountability for Academic Achievement of Students with Dyslexia

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2007-12-01

    Representatives DOD SCHOOLS Additional Reporting Could Improve Accountability for Academic Achievement of Students with Dyslexia December...Could Improve Accountability for Academic Achievement of Students with Dyslexia 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER 5b. GRANT NUMBER 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT NUMBER 6...Students with Dyslexia Highlights of GAO-08-70, a report to the Chairman, Committee on Science and Technology, House of Representatives Many of our

  11. Breaking through barriers: using technology to address executive function weaknesses and improve student achievement.

    PubMed

    Schwartz, David M

    2014-01-01

    Assistive technologies provide significant capabilities for improving student achievement. Improved accessibility, cost, and diversity of applications make integration of technology a powerful tool to compensate for executive function weaknesses and deficits and their impact on student performance, learning, and achievement. These tools can be used to compensate for decreased working memory, poor time management, poor planning and organization, poor initiation, and decreased memory. Assistive technology provides mechanisms to assist students with diverse strengths and weaknesses in mastering core curricular concepts.

  12. Enhancing Inquiry, Understanding, and Achievement in an Astronomy Multimedia Learning Environment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Taasoobshirazi, Gita; Zuiker, Steven J.; Anderson, Kate T.; Hickey, Daniel T.

    2006-01-01

    As an example of design-based research, this study refined an assessment strategy for simultaneously enhancing inquiry-based learning and supporting achievement on conventional assessment measures. "Astronomy Village[R]: Investigating the Universe[TM]" is a software program designed to engage secondary science students in authentic and…

  13. Understanding Community College Students' Learning Styles and the Link to Academic Achievement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Peters, Kathleen

    2012-01-01

    Learning styles have been an area of interest in educational psychology for many decades. However, community college students have been overlooked in learning styles research. To enhance teacher efficacy and student success, it is important to continue to evaluate the relationship between learning styles and academic achievement. The purpose of…

  14. Understanding Student Goal Orientation Tendencies to Predict Student Performance: A 2x2 Achievement Goal Orientation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Miller, Mark Alan

    2013-01-01

    The study tested the 2X2 model of the Achievement Goal Orientation (AGO) theory in a military technical training environment while using the Air Force Officers Qualifying Test's academic aptitude score to control for the differences in the students' academic aptitude. The study method was quantitative and the design was correlational.…

  15. Students' Individual and Collective Efficacy: Joining Together Two Sets of Beliefs for Understanding Academic Achievement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pina-Neves, Silvia; Faria, Luisa; Raty, Hannu

    2013-01-01

    In this paper, we assume that students' achievement is influenced not only by a set of individual appraisals such as beliefs about their personal efficacy but also by a set of more systemic factors related to beliefs about their class efficacy as a group. Literature and research review supports that students' beliefs about their efficacy, both as…

  16. Understanding Achievement Differences between Schools in Ireland--Can Existing Data-Sets Help?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gilleece, Lorraine

    2014-01-01

    Recent years have seen an increased focus on school accountability in Ireland and calls for greater use to be made of student achievement data for monitoring student outcomes. In this paper, it is argued that existing data-sets in Ireland offer limited potential for the value-added modelling approaches used for accountability purposes in many…

  17. Understanding Motivational Structures That Differentially Predict Engagement and Achievement in Middle School Science

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lee, Christine S.; Hayes, Kathryn N.; Seitz, Jeffery; DiStefano, Rachelle; O'Connor, Dawn

    2016-01-01

    Middle school has been documented as the period in which a drop in students' science interest and achievement occurs. This trend indicates a lack of motivation for learning science; however, little is known about how different aspects of motivation interact with student engagement and science learning outcomes. This study examines the…

  18. Teachers' Perception of Their Principal's Leadership Style and the Effects on Student Achievement in Improving and Non-Improving Schools

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hardman, Brenda Kay

    2011-01-01

    Teachers' perceptions of their school leaders influence student achievement in their schools. The extent of this influence is examined in this study. This quantitative study examined teachers' perceptions of the leadership style of their principals as transformational, transactional or passive-avoidant in improving and non-improving schools in…

  19. Integrating empowerment evaluation and quality improvement to achieve healthcare improvement outcomes.

    PubMed

    Wandersman, Abraham; Alia, Kassandra Ann; Cook, Brittany; Ramaswamy, Rohit

    2015-10-01

    While the body of evidence-based healthcare interventions grows, the ability of health systems to deliver these interventions effectively and efficiently lags behind. Quality improvement approaches, such as the model for improvement, have demonstrated some success in healthcare but their impact has been lessened by implementation challenges. To help address these challenges, we describe the empowerment evaluation approach that has been developed by programme evaluators and a method for its application (Getting To Outcomes (GTO)). We then describe how GTO can be used to implement healthcare interventions. An illustrative healthcare quality improvement example that compares the model for improvement and the GTO method for reducing hospital admissions through improved diabetes care is described. We conclude with suggestions for integrating GTO and the model for improvement.

  20. Integrating empowerment evaluation and quality improvement to achieve healthcare improvement outcomes

    PubMed Central

    Wandersman, Abraham; Alia, Kassandra Ann; Cook, Brittany; Ramaswamy, Rohit

    2015-01-01

    While the body of evidence-based healthcare interventions grows, the ability of health systems to deliver these interventions effectively and efficiently lags behind. Quality improvement approaches, such as the model for improvement, have demonstrated some success in healthcare but their impact has been lessened by implementation challenges. To help address these challenges, we describe the empowerment evaluation approach that has been developed by programme evaluators and a method for its application (Getting To Outcomes (GTO)). We then describe how GTO can be used to implement healthcare interventions. An illustrative healthcare quality improvement example that compares the model for improvement and the GTO method for reducing hospital admissions through improved diabetes care is described. We conclude with suggestions for integrating GTO and the model for improvement. PMID:26178332

  1. "What We Breathe Impacts Our Health: Improving Understanding of the Link between Air Pollution and Health".

    PubMed

    West, J Jason; Cohen, Aaron; Dentener, Frank; Brunekreef, Bert; Zhu, Tong; Armstrong, Ben; Bell, Michelle L; Brauer, Michael; Carmichael, Gregory; Costa, Dan L; Dockery, Douglas W; Kleeman, Michael; Krzyzanowski, Michal; Künzli, Nino; Liousse, Catherine; Lung, Shih-Chun Candice; Martin, Randall V; Pöschl, Ulrich; Pope, C Arden; Roberts, James M; Russell, Armistead G; Wiedinmyer, Christine

    2016-05-17

    Air pollution contributes to the premature deaths of millions of people each year around the world, and air quality problems are growing in many developing nations. While past policy efforts have succeeded in reducing particulate matter and trace gases in North America and Europe, adverse health effects are found at even these lower levels of air pollution. Future policy actions will benefit from improved understanding of the interactions and health effects of different chemical species and source categories. Achieving this new understanding requires air pollution scientists and engineers to work increasingly closely with health scientists. In particular, research is needed to better understand the chemical and physical properties of complex air pollutant mixtures, and to use new observations provided by satellites, advanced in situ measurement techniques, and distributed micro monitoring networks, coupled with models, to better characterize air pollution exposure for epidemiological and toxicological research, and to better quantify the effects of specific source sectors and mitigation strategies.

  2. Influence of Students' Understanding and Goal Commitment on Academic Achievement in Introductory Technology in Akwa Ibom State, Nigeria

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Akpan, Godwin A.; Mbaba, Uduak G.; Udofia, Aniefiok E.

    2012-01-01

    The study examined the influence of students' understanding and goal commitment on their academic achievement in Introductory Technology in secondary schools in Akwa Ibom State, Nigeria. An ex-post facto survey design was used and a random sample of 2,500 junior secondary three (13-14 years old) students from a population of 48,302 JSS three…

  3. Toward an Improved Understanding of the Global Fresh Water Budget

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hildebrand, Peter H.

    2005-01-01

    priorities for future improvements in global fresh water budget monitoring. The priorities are based on the potential of new approaches to provide improved measurement and modeling systems, and on the need to measure and understand the potential for a speed-up of the global water cycle under the effects of climate change.

  4. Student Achievement Effects of Technology-Supported Remediation of Understanding of Fractions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ross, John A.; Bruce, Catherine D.

    2009-01-01

    Students have difficulty learning fractions, and problems in understanding fractions persist into adulthood, with moderate to severe consequences for everyday and occupational decision-making. Remediation of student misconceptions is hampered by deficiencies in teachers' knowledge of the discipline and pedagogical content knowledge. We theorized…

  5. A Confirmatory Structural Equation Model of Achievement Estimated by Dichotomous Attitudes, Interest, and Conceptual Understanding

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kim, Minkee; Song, Jinwoong

    2010-01-01

    Many models in science education have tried to clarify the causal relationships of affective variables on student performance, by presenting theoretical models, exploratory SEM (structural equation models), and confirmatory SEM. Based on the literature, the recent AS-TI-CU model scrutinised the most robust stimuli of conceptual understanding (CU):…

  6. Bridging the Gap: Fraction Understanding Is Central to Mathematics Achievement in Students from Three Different Continents

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Torbeyns, Joke; Schneider, Michael; Xin, Ziqiang; Siegler, Robert S.

    2015-01-01

    Numerical understanding and arithmetic skills are easier to acquire for whole numbers than fractions. The "integrated theory of numerical development" posits that, in addition to these differences, whole numbers and fractions also have important commonalities. In both, students need to learn how to interpret number symbols in terms of…

  7. Models and Moves: Focusing on Dimensions of Causal Complexity To Achieve Deeper Scientific Understanding.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Perkins, David N.; Grotzer, Tina A.

    This paper presents the results of a research project based on the Understandings of Consequence Project. This study motivated students to engage in inquiry in science classrooms. The complexity of the models is divided into four categories--underlying causality, relational causality, probabilistic causality, and emergent causality--and provides…

  8. Social jetlag, academic achievement and cognitive performance: Understanding gender/sex differences.

    PubMed

    Díaz-Morales, Juan F; Escribano, Cristina

    2015-01-01

    Adolescents in high school suffer from circadian misalignment, undersleeping on weekdays and oversleeping on weekends. Since high schools usually impose early schedules, adolescents suffer from permanent social jetlag (SJL) and thus are a suitable population to study the effects of SJL on both academic and cognitive performance. In this study, 796 adolescents aged 12-16 years reported information about their sleep habits, morningness-eveningness (M-E), cognitive abilities and grade point average (GPA). Time in bed on both weekdays and weekends was not related to cognitive abilities, and only time in bed on weekdays was related to academic achievement. SJL was negatively related to academic achievement, cognitive abilities (except for vocabulary and verbal fluency abilities) and general cognitive ability (g), whereas M-E was slightly positively related to academic achievement and marginally negatively related to inductive reasoning. Results separated by sex/gender indicated that SJL may be more detrimental to girls' performance, as it was negatively related to a greater number of cognitive abilities and GPA.

  9. School Improvement Plans and Student Achievement: Preliminary Evidence from the Quality and Merit Project in Italy

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Caputo, Andrea; Rastelli, Valentina

    2014-01-01

    This study provides preliminary evidence from an Italian in-service training program addressed to lower secondary school teachers which supports school improvement plans (SIPs). It aims at exploring the association between characteristics/contents of SIPs and student improvement in math achievement. Pre-post standardized tests and text analysis of…

  10. Training Theory of Mind and Executive Control: A Tool for Improving School Achievement?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kloo, Daniela; Perner, Josef

    2008-01-01

    In the preschool years, there are marked improvements in theory of mind (ToM) and executive functions. And, children's competence in these two core cognitive domains is associated with their academic achievement. Therefore, training ToM and executive control could be a valuable tool for improving children's success in school. This article reviews…

  11. Understanding and Improving High Voltage Vacuum Insulators for Microsecond Pulses

    SciTech Connect

    Javedani, J B; Goerz, D A; Houck, T L; Lauer, E J; Speer, R D; Tully, L K; Vogtlin, G E; White, A D

    2007-03-05

    High voltage insulation is one of the main areas of pulsed power research and development, and dielectric breakdown is usually the limiting factor in attaining the highest possible performance in pulsed power devices. For many applications the delivery of pulsed power into a vacuum region is the most critical aspect of operation. The surface of an insulator exposed to vacuum can fail electrically at an applied field more than an order or magnitude below the bulk dielectric strength of the insulator. This mode of breakdown, called surface flashover, imposes serious limitations on the power flow into a vacuum region. This is especially troublesome for applications where high voltage conditioning of the insulator and electrodes is not practical and for applications where relatively long pulses, on the order of several microseconds, are required. The goal of this project is to establish a sound fundamental understanding of the mechanisms that lead to surface flashover, and then evaluate the most promising techniques to improve vacuum insulators and enable high voltage operation at stress levels near the intrinsic bulk breakdown limits of the material. The approach we proposed and followed was to develop this understanding through a combination of theoretical and computation methods coupled with experiments to validate and quantify expected behaviors. In this report we summarize our modeling and simulation efforts, theoretical studies, and experimental investigations. The computational work began by exploring the limits of commercially available codes and demonstrating methods to examine field enhancements and defect mechanisms at microscopic levels. Plasma simulations with particle codes used in conjunction with circuit models of the experimental apparatus enabled comparisons with experimental measurements. The large scale plasma (LSP) particle-in-cell (PIC) code was run on multiprocessor platforms and used to simulate expanding plasma conditions in vacuum gap regions

  12. How to achieve and prove performance improvement - 15 years of experience in German wastewater benchmarking.

    PubMed

    Bertzbach, F; Franz, T; Möller, K

    2012-01-01

    This paper shows the results of performance improvement, which have been achieved in benchmarking projects in the wastewater industry in Germany over the last 15 years. A huge number of changes in operational practice and also in achieved annual savings can be shown, induced in particular by benchmarking at process level. Investigation of this question produces some general findings for the inclusion of performance improvement in a benchmarking project and for the communication of its results. Thus, we elaborate on the concept of benchmarking at both utility and process level, which is still a necessary distinction for the integration of performance improvement into our benchmarking approach. To achieve performance improvement via benchmarking it should be made quite clear that this outcome depends, on one hand, on a well conducted benchmarking programme and, on the other, on the individual situation within each participating utility.

  13. Understanding and projecting sea level change: improvements and uncertainties (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Church, J. A.; Clark, P. U.; Cazenave, A. A.; Gregory, J. M.; Jevrejeva, S.; Merrifield, M. A.; Milne, G. A.; Nerem, R.; Payne, A. J.; Pfeffer, W. T.; Stammer, D.; Levermann, A.; Nunn, P.; Unnikrishnan, A. S.

    2013-12-01

    The rate of global mean sea level rise (GMSLR) has accelerated during the last two centuries, from a rate of order tenths of mm yr-1 during the late Holocene, to about 1.7 mm yr-1 since 1901. Ocean thermal expansion and glacier melting were the dominant contributors to 20th century GMSLR, with relatively small contributions from the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets. Process-based models suggest that the larger rate of rise since 1990 results from increased radiative forcing (both natural and anthropogenic) and increased ice-sheet outflow, induced by warming of the immediately adjacent ocean. Confidence in projections of global mean sea level rise has increased since the AR4 because of improved physical process-based understanding of observed sea level change, especially in recent decades, and the inclusion of future rapid ice-sheet dynamical changes, for which a quantitative assessment could not be made on the basis of scientific knowledge available at the time of the AR4. By 2100, the rate of GMSLR for a scenario of high emissions (RCP8.5) could approach the average rates that occurred during the last deglaciation, whereas for a strong emissions mitigation scenario (RCP2.6) it could stabilise at rates similar to those of the early 21st century. In either case, GMSLR will continue for many subsequent centuries. Although there has been much recent progress, projections of ice-sheet change are still uncertain, especially beyond 2100. Future sea level change will not be globally uniform, but models still exhibit substantial disagreement in projections of ice mass loss and ocean dynamics, which are the main influences on the pattern. Uncertainty in projections of future storminess is a further obstacle to confident projection of changes in sea level extremes.

  14. Improving predictive certainty and system understanding with watershed hydrology models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kelleher, C.; McGlynn, B. L.; Wagener, T.

    2015-12-01

    Modeling at the intersection of climate variability and hydrology is complicated by uncertainties that make predicting physical behavior a challenge. Environmental models used to simulate how climate will impact hydrology are typically complex, demand many spatial and temporal data inputs, contain numerous parameters, and can be computationally expensive. Distributed models in particular complicate the assessment of how uncertainty in the model framework, inputs, parameters, and observations impact predictive uncertainty. In addition, future climate perturbations may alter the magnitude of these uncertainties. Here, we focus on model parameters as a key source of uncertainty. Identifying those model parameters that most influence the predictions at a particular place can reduce a complex, multidimensional problem to a simpler form. We demonstrate how sensitivity analysis in the absence of observational streamflow can be used to identify sensitive model parameters by conditioning a model on climate data and a priori parameter ranges. We apply this approach to five headwater catchments in the Tenderfoot Creek Experimental Forest located in central Montana using the Distributed Hydrology-Soil-Vegetation Model. Across these five sub-catchments, climate clearly organizes parameter sensitivities. To further explore the relationship between parameter sensitivities and climate, we assess how parameter sensitivities change when meteorological forcing data is perturbed to reflect natural variability at the site. This general approach can support uncertainty reduction. However, parameter equifinality will still impact finer scale predictions of any environmental variable in space and time. As such, improving our certainty in environmental predictions should evaluate point predictions as well as simulations of internal catchment behavior, and must not only rely on our use of computational methods but on our basic understanding of system functioning.

  15. Making Employee Recognition a Tool for Achieving Improved Performance: Implication for Ghanaian Universities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Amoatemaa, Abena Serwaa; Kyeremeh, Dorcas Darkoah

    2016-01-01

    Many organisations are increasingly making use of employee recognition to motivate employees to achieve high performance and productivity. Research has shown that effective recognition occurs in organisations that have strong supportive culture, understand the psychology of praising employees for their good work, and apply the principles of…

  16. Communicating with Parents: Understanding the Process, Improving Your Skills

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    American Federation of Teachers (NJ), 2007

    2007-01-01

    Communication is the exchange of information, ideas and/or feelings from one person to another. The goal of communication is understanding. Without understanding, there is no communication. The communication process consists of verbal and nonverbal communication and listening. The spoken word is self-explanatory. Communication problems between…

  17. Effects of simulated interventions to improve school entry academic skills on socioeconomic inequalities in educational achievement.

    PubMed

    Chittleborough, Catherine R; Mittinty, Murthy N; Lawlor, Debbie A; Lynch, John W

    2014-01-01

    Randomized controlled trial evidence shows that interventions before age 5 can improve skills necessary for educational success; the effect of these interventions on socioeconomic inequalities is unknown. Using trial effect estimates, and marginal structural models with data from the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (n = 11,764, imputed), simulated effects of plausible interventions to improve school entry academic skills on socioeconomic inequality in educational achievement at age 16 were examined. Progressive universal interventions (i.e., more intense intervention for those with greater need) to improve school entry academic skills could raise population levels of educational achievement by 5% and reduce absolute socioeconomic inequality in poor educational achievement by 15%.

  18. Effects of Simulated Interventions to Improve School Entry Academic Skills on Socioeconomic Inequalities in Educational Achievement

    PubMed Central

    Chittleborough, Catherine R; Mittinty, Murthy N; Lawlor, Debbie A; Lynch, John W

    2014-01-01

    Randomized controlled trial evidence shows that interventions before age 5 can improve skills necessary for educational success; the effect of these interventions on socioeconomic inequalities is unknown. Using trial effect estimates, and marginal structural models with data from the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (n = 11,764, imputed), simulated effects of plausible interventions to improve school entry academic skills on socioeconomic inequality in educational achievement at age 16 were examined. Progressive universal interventions (i.e., more intense intervention for those with greater need) to improve school entry academic skills could raise population levels of educational achievement by 5% and reduce absolute socioeconomic inequality in poor educational achievement by 15%. PMID:25327718

  19. Achieving asthma control in practice: understanding the reasons for poor control.

    PubMed

    Haughney, John; Price, David; Kaplan, Alan; Chrystyn, Henry; Horne, Rob; May, Nick; Moffat, Mandy; Versnel, Jennifer; Shanahan, Eamonn R; Hillyer, Elizabeth V; Tunsäter, Alf; Bjermer, Leif

    2008-12-01

    Achieving asthma control remains an elusive goal for the majority of patients worldwide. Ensuring a correct diagnosis of asthma is the first step in assessing poor symptom control; this requires returning to the basics of history taking and physical examination, in conjunction with lung function measurement when appropriate. A number of factors may contribute to sub-optimal asthma control. Concomitant rhinitis, a common co-pathology and contributor to poor control, can often be identified by asking a simple question. Smoking too has been identified as a cause of poor asthma control. Practical barriers such as poor inhaler technique must be addressed. An appreciation of patients' views and concerns about maintenance asthma therapy can help guide discussion to address perceptual barriers to taking maintenance therapy (doubts about personal necessity and concerns about potential adverse effects). Further study into, and a greater consideration of, factors and patient characteristics that could predict individual responses to asthma therapies are needed. Finally, more clinical trials that enrol patient populations reflecting the real world diversity of patients seen in clinical practice, including wide age ranges, presence of comorbidities, current smoking, and differing ethnic origins, will contribute to better individual patient management.

  20. Stories of Success: Understanding Academic Achievement of Hispanic Students in Science

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harris, Amanda

    A review of the literature shows that there is much evidence to suggest the challenges facing Hispanic students in American public schools. Hispanic enrollment in K--12 public schools has increased from 6 to 19% in the last thirty years, yet schools have not made adequate adjustments to accommodate this changing population. Issues such as remedial tracking and cultural differences have led to low high school graduate rates for Hispanic students and inequities in schooling experiences (Gay, 2000). Particularly in the area of science, Hispanic students struggle with academic success (Cole & Espinoza, 2008). Despite these obstacles, some Hispanic students are academically successful (Rochin & Mello, 2007; Merisotis & Kee, 2006). This dissertation tells the stories of these Hispanic students who have been successful in science in secondary public schools. This study followed a grounded theory methodology and utilized individual interviews to collect data about Hispanics who have demonstrated achievement in the area of science. Through the analysis of these interviews, factors were identified which may have contributed to the success of these Hispanics in the field of science. Implications for future practice in public schools are also discussed.

  1. The Consequences of "School Improvement": Examining the Association between Two Standardized Assessments Measuring School Improvement and Student Science Achievement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Maltese, Adam V.; Hochbein, Craig D.

    2012-01-01

    For more than half a century concerns about the ability of American students to compete in a global workplace focused policymakers' attention on improving school performance generally, and student achievement in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) specifically. In its most recent form--No Child Left Behind--there is evidence…

  2. Instructional Leadership Influence on Collective Teacher Efficacy to Improve School Achievement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fancera, Samuel F.; Bliss, James R.

    2011-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to examine whether instructional leadership functions, as defined in Hallinger's Principal Instructional Management Rating Scale, positively influence collective teacher efficacy to improve school achievement. Teachers from sample schools provided data for measures of collective teacher efficacy and instructional…

  3. Investing in Educator Data Literacy Improves Student Achievement. Evidence of Impact: The Oregon Data Project

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Data Quality Campaign, 2012

    2012-01-01

    Since 2007 the Oregon DATA Project has been investing resources to provide educators on-the-job training around effective data use to improve student achievement. New evidence shows that their efforts are paying off. A 2011 Oregon DATA Project report detailed the impact of their investment in the state's educators, finding the following: (1)…

  4. Improving Achievement in Low-Performing Schools: Key Results for School Leaders

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ward, Randolph E.; Burke, Mary Ann

    2004-01-01

    As accountability in schools becomes more crucial, educators are looking for comprehensive and innovative management practices that respond to challenges and realities of student academic achievement. In order to improve academic performance and the quality of instruction, the entire school community needs to be involved. This book provides six…

  5. Expansion of Out-of-School Programs Aims at Improving Student Achievement. Report.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Perry, Mary; Teague, Jackie; Frey, Susan

    There is a growing conviction that out-of-school programs can play an important role in improving student achievement. Both government and private sources are investing in them. This report focuses on the expanding prevalence of after-school programs in California, and profiles their nature and the demands that they face. Funding has been…

  6. Promoting Student Achievement through Improved Health Policy. Policy Update. Vol. 22, No. 11

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fobbs, Erima

    2015-01-01

    "Promoting Student Achievement through Improved Health Policy" is a quick primer of the [Centers for Disease Control and Prevention] CDC's "Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child" model, which highlights 10 important areas for connecting health and learning: health education; physical education and physical activity;…

  7. Improving High School Students' Mathematics Achievement through the Use of Motivational Strategies.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Portal, Jamie; Sampson, Lisa

    This report describes a program for motivating students in mathematics in order to improve achievement at the high school level. The targeted population consisted of high school students in a middle class community located in a suburb of a large metropolitan area. The problems of underachievement were documented through data collected from surveys…

  8. Analyzing Academic Achievement of Junior High School Students by an Improved Rough Set Model

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pai, Ping-Feng; Lyu, Yi-Jia; Wang, Yu-Min

    2010-01-01

    Rough set theory (RST) is an emerging technique used to deal with problems in data mining and knowledge acquisition. However, the RST approach has not been widely explored in the field of academic achievement. This investigation developed an improved RST (IMRST) model, which employs linear discriminant analysis to determine a reduct of RST, and…

  9. Using Cooperative Learning To Improve the Academic Achievements of Inner-City Middle School Students.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Holliday, Dwight C.

    Whether using cooperative learning can improve the academic achievement of inner city middle school students was studied in Gary, Indiana at a school with a population of 503 students. Two seventh-grade classes taught by 1 African American male teacher served as 1 treatment group of 20 at-risk students and one nontreatment group of 24 high…

  10. A Better Return on Investment: Reallocating Resources To Improve Student Achievement. [Booklet with Audiotapes].

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    North Central Regional Educational Lab., Oak Brook, IL.

    Standards-based educational reform has prompted the education system as a whole to examine whether the dollars put into the system reflect an investment in meeting the overarching goals of school reform. Driven by a common goal of improving the achievement of all students to increase the productivity of society in general, the education industry…

  11. Improving Students' Creative Thinking and Achievement through the Implementation of Multiple Intelligence Approach with Mind Mapping

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Widiana, I. Wayan; Jampel, I. Nyoman

    2016-01-01

    This classroom action research aimed to improve the students' creative thinking and achievement in learning science. It conducted through the implementation of multiple intelligences with mind mapping approach and describing the students' responses. The subjects of this research were the fifth grade students of SD 8 Tianyar Barat, Kubu, and…

  12. The Effectiveness of the SSHA in Improving Prediction of Academic Achievement.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wikoff, Richard L.; Kafka, Gene F.

    1981-01-01

    Investigated the effectiveness of the Survey of Study Habits (SSHA) in improving prediction of achievement. The American College Testing Program English and mathematics subtests were good predictors of gradepoint average. The SSHA subtests accounted for an additional 3 percent of the variance. Sex differences were noted. (Author)

  13. Improving Student Academic Reading Achievement through the Use of Multiple Intelligence Teaching Strategies.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Uhlir, Pamela

    This report describes an action research project improving student academic reading achievement. The targeted population consisted of fifth grade students in a growing suburb of a major midwestern metropolitan area. The evidence for existence of the problem included student surveys, assessments, teacher observations and checklists. Analysis of…

  14. Improving Teaching Capacity to Increase Student Achievement: The Key Role of Data Interpretation by School Leaders

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lynch, David; Smith, Richard; Provost, Steven; Madden, Jake

    2016-01-01

    Purpose: This paper argues that in a well-organised school with strong leadership and vision coupled with a concerted effort to improve the teaching performance of each teacher, student achievement can be enhanced. The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate that while macro-effect sizes such as "whole of school" metrics are useful for…

  15. Changing the Conversation: Messages for Improving Public Understanding of Engineering

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    National Academies Press, 2008

    2008-01-01

    Can the United States continue to lead the world in innovation? The answer may hinge in part on how well the public understands engineering, a key component of the "innovation engine." A related concern is how to encourage young people--particularly girls and under-represented minorities--to consider engineering as a career option.…

  16. Standing in the Hallway Improves Students' Understanding of Conformity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lawson, Timothy J.; Haubner, Richard R.; Bodle, James H.

    2013-01-01

    To help beginning psychology students understand how they are influenced by social pressures to conform, we developed a demonstration designed to elicit their conformity to a small group of students standing in the hallway before class. Results showed the demonstration increased students' recognition of their own tendency to conform, knowledge of…

  17. Lectures and Simulation Laboratories to Improve Learners' Conceptual Understanding

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brophy, Sean P.; Magana, Alejandra J.; Strachan, Alejandro

    2013-01-01

    We studied the use of online molecular dynamics simulations (MD) to enhance student abilities to understand the atomic processes governing plastic deformation in materials. The target population included a second-year undergraduate engineering course in the School of Materials Engineering at Purdue University. The objectives of the study were to…

  18. Understanding Leadership Paradigms for Improvement in Higher Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Flumerfelt, Shannon; Banachowski, Michael

    2011-01-01

    Purpose: This research article is based on the Baldrige National Quality Program Education Criteria for Performance Excellence's conceptualization of improvement as a dual cycle/three element initiative of examining and bettering inputs, processes, and outputs as driven by measurement, analysis and knowledge management work. This study isolates a…

  19. Improving Access to and Understanding of Regulations through Taxonomies

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cheng, Chin Pang; Lau. Gloria T.; Law, Kincho H.; Pan, Jiayi; Jones, Albert

    2009-01-01

    Industrial taxonomies have the potential to automate information retrieval, facilitate interoperability and, most importantly, improve decision making - decisions that must comply with existing government regulations and codes of practice. However, it is difficult to find those regulations and codes most relevant to a particular decision, even…

  20. Resource Allocation Practices in Three Charter Middle Schools in Relation to Student Achievement Improvement Strategies

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Campo-Contreras, Susana

    2013-01-01

    The purpose of the study was to develop a better understanding of the allocation of resources used to improve student learning outcomes in three middle schools within a Charter Management Organization (CMO). The three middle schools that participated in the study have similar demographics and serve students in low socio-economic areas of Los…

  1. Improved performance of polybenzoxazines through a mechanistic understanding of polymerization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Yong-Xia

    A class of phenolic resins, polybenzoxazines, is described. Benzoxazine resins have a wide range of mechanical and physical properties that can be tailored to various needs. Good thermal, chemical, electrical, mechanical, and physical properties make polybenzoxazines attractive alternatives to existing materials. Effective initiators/catalysts aimed at lowering the polymerization temperature and reducing the product cycle time have been examined. The benzoxazine-initiator systems exhibit new polymerization mechanisms and kinetics, leading to polybenzoxazines with highly improved properties. By tailoring the benzoxazine chemistry and utilizing a new synthetic route, both hydrophilic and hydrophobic thermoplastic polybenzoxazines with high molecular weight are synthesized for the first time. A novel type of low cost yet high performance benzoxazine resins, mono-oxazine-based low viscosity benzoxazines, has been developed. Various characterization techniques including proton (1H) and carbon (13C) nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (NMR), Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FT-IR), pyrolytic gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS), size exclusion chromatography (SEC), static light scattering (SLS), wide angle X-ray diffraction (WAXD), differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), thermogravimetric analysis (TGA), and dynamic mechanical analysis (DMA) have been used to determine the polymer structures and demonstrate their improved properties.

  2. Recipe for Success: An Updated Parents' Guide to Improving Colorado Schools and Student Achievement. Second Edition.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Taher, Bonnie; Durr, Pamela

    This guide describes ways that parents can help improve student achievement and school quality. It answers such questions as how to choose the right early-education opportunity for a preschooler, how to make sure a 5-year-old is ready for school, how to help a daughter do well in school, how to work with a daughter's or son's teachers, how to help…

  3. Concepts first, jargon second improves student articulation of understanding.

    PubMed

    McDonnell, Lisa; Barker, Megan K; Wieman, Carl

    2016-01-01

    In this experiment, students in a large undergraduate biology course were first exposed to the concepts without new technical vocabulary ("jargon") in a pre-class reading assignment. Their learning of the concepts and jargon was compared with that of an equivalent group of students in another section of the same course, whose pre-class reading presented both the jargon and concepts together in the traditional manner. Both groups had the same active-learning classes with the same instructor, and then completed the same post-test. Although the two groups performed the same on the multiple choice questions of the post-test, the group exposed to concepts first and jargon second included 1.5 times and 2.5 times more correct arguments on two free-response questions about the concepts. The correct use of jargon between the two groups was similar, with the exception of one jargon term that the control group used more often. These results suggest that modest instructional changes whereby new concepts are introduced in a concepts-first, jargon-second manner can increase student learning, as demonstrated by their ability to articulate their understanding of new concepts.

  4. Understanding Social Justice: Improving the Academic Achievement of African American Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Templeton, Nathan R.

    2011-01-01

    NCLB seeks to level the playing field by narrowing class and racial gaps in school performance by establishing common expectations. No Child Left Behind Act (2001) increases the standards of accountability for states and schools, thus requiring educational leaders to rethink current school strategies. Holding individual schools accountable for the…

  5. A Cognitive Framework for Understanding and Improving Interference Resolution in the Brain

    PubMed Central

    Mishra, Jyoti; Anguera, Joaquin A.; Ziegler, David A.; Gazzaley, Adam

    2014-01-01

    All of us are familiar with the negative impact of interference on achieving our task goals. We are referring to interference by information, which either impinges on our senses from an external environmental source or is internally generated by our thoughts. Informed by more than a decade of research on the cognitive and neural processing of interference, we have developed a framework for understanding how interference impacts our neural systems and especially how it is regulated and suppressed during efficient on-task performance. Importantly, externally and internally generated interferences have distinct neural signatures, and further, distinct neural processing emerges depending on whether individuals must ignore and suppress the interference, as for distractions, or engage with them in a secondary task, as during multitasking. Here, we elaborate on this cognitive framework and how it changes throughout the human lifespan, focusing mostly on research evidence from younger adults and comparing these findings to data from older adults, children, and cognitively impaired populations. With insights gleaned from our growing understanding, we then describe three novel translational efforts in our lab directed at improving distinct aspects of interference resolution using cognitive training. Critically, these training approaches were specifically developed to target improved interference resolution based on neuroplasticity principles and have shown much success in randomized controlled first version evaluations in healthy aging. Our results show not only on-task training improvements but also robust generalization of benefit to other cognitive control abilities. This research showcases how an in-depth understanding of neural mechanisms can then inform the development of effective deficit-targeted interventions, which can in turn benefit both healthy and cognitively impaired populations. PMID:24309262

  6. Mechanistic Understanding of Microbial Plugging for Improved Sweep Efficiency

    SciTech Connect

    Steven Bryant; Larry Britton

    2008-09-30

    Microbial plugging has been proposed as an effective low cost method of permeability reduction. Yet there is a dearth of information on the fundamental processes of microbial growth in porous media, and there are no suitable data to model the process of microbial plugging as it relates to sweep efficiency. To optimize the field implementation, better mechanistic and volumetric understanding of biofilm growth within a porous medium is needed. In particular, the engineering design hinges upon a quantitative relationship between amount of nutrient consumption, amount of growth, and degree of permeability reduction. In this project experiments were conducted to obtain new data to elucidate this relationship. Experiments in heterogeneous (layered) beadpacks showed that microbes could grow preferentially in the high permeability layer. Ultimately this caused flow to be equally divided between high and low permeability layers, precisely the behavior needed for MEOR. Remarkably, classical models of microbial nutrient uptake in batch experiments do not explain the nutrient consumption by the same microbes in flow experiments. We propose a simple extension of classical kinetics to account for the self-limiting consumption of nutrient observed in our experiments, and we outline a modeling approach based on architecture and behavior of biofilms. Such a model would account for the changing trend of nutrient consumption by bacteria with the increasing biomass and the onset of biofilm formation. However no existing model can explain the microbial preference for growth in high permeability regions, nor is there any obvious extension of the model for this observation. An attractive conjecture is that quorum sensing is involved in the heterogeneous bead packs.

  7. Does achieving the best practice tariff improve outcomes in hip fracture patients? An observational cohort study

    PubMed Central

    Oakley, B; Nightingale, J; Moran, CG; Moppett, IK

    2017-01-01

    Objectives To determine if the introduction of the best practice tariff (BPT) has improved survival of the elderly hip fracture population, or if achieving BPT results in improved survival for an individual. Setting A single university-affiliated teaching hospital. Participants 2541 patients aged over 60 admitted with a neck of femur fracture between 2008 and 2010 and from 2012 to 2014 were included, to create two cohorts of patients, before and after the introduction of BPT. The post-BPT cohort was divided into two groups, those who achieved the criteria and those who did not. Primary and secondary outcome measures Primary outcomes of interest were differences in mortality across cohorts. Secondary analysis was performed to identify associations between individual BPT criteria and mortality. Results The introduction of BPT did not significantly alter overall 30-mortality in the hip fracture population (8.3% pre-BPT vs 10.0% post-BPT; p=0.128). Neither was there a significant reduction in length of stay (15 days (IQR 9–21) pre-BPT vs 14 days (IQR 11–22); p=0.236). However, the introduction of BPT was associated with a reduction in the time from admission to theatre (median 44 hours pre-BPT (IQR 24–44) vs 23 hours post-BPT (IQR 17–30); p<0.005). 30-day mortality in those who achieved BPT was significantly lower (6.0% vs 21.0% in those who did not achieve-BPT; p<0.005). There was a survival benefit at 1 year for those who achieved BPT (28.6% vs 42.0% did not achieve-BPT; p<0.005). Multivariate logistic regression revealed that of the BPT criteria, AMT monitoring and expedited surgery were the only BPT criteria that significantly influenced survival. Conclusions The introduction of the BPT has not led to a demonstrable improvement in outcomes at organisational level, though other factors may have confounded any benefits. However, patients where BPT criteria are met appear to have improved outcomes. PMID:28167748

  8. Passive Fit in Screw Retained Multi-unit Implant Prosthesis Understanding and Achieving: A Review of the Literature.

    PubMed

    Buzayan, Muaiyed Mahmoud; Yunus, Norsiah Binti

    2014-03-01

    One of the considerable challenges for screw-retained multi-unit implant prosthesis is achieving a passive fit of the prosthesis' superstructure to the implants. This passive fit is supposed to be one of the most vital requirements for the maintenance of the osseointegration. On the other hand, the misfit of the implant supported superstructure may lead to unfavourable complications, which can be mechanical or biological in nature. The manifestations of these complications may range from fracture of various components in the implant system, pain, marginal bone loss, and even loss of osseointegration. Thus, minimizing the misfit and optimizing the passive fit should be a prerequisite for implant survival and success. The purpose of this article is to present and summarize some aspects of the passive fit achieving and improving methods. The literature review was performed through Science Direct, Pubmed, and Google database. They were searched in English using the following combinations of keywords: passive fit, implant misfit and framework misfit. Articles were selected on the basis of whether they had sufficient information related to framework misfit's related factors, passive fit and its achievement techniques, marginal bone changes relation with the misfit, implant impression techniques and splinting concept. The related references were selected in order to emphasize the importance of the passive fit achievement and the misfit minimizing. Despite the fact that the literature presents considerable information regarding the framework's misfit, there was not consistency in literature on a specified number or even a range to be the acceptable level of misfit. On the other hand, a review of the literature revealed that the complete passive fit still remains a tricky goal to be achieved by the prosthodontist.

  9. Understanding improved osteoblast behavior on select nanoporous anodic alumina

    PubMed Central

    Ni, Siyu; Li, Changyan; Ni, Shirong; Chen, Ting; Webster, Thomas J

    2014-01-01

    The aim of this study was to prepare different sized porous anodic alumina (PAA) and examine preosteoblast (MC3T3-E1) attachment and proliferation on such nanoporous surfaces. In this study, PAA with tunable pore sizes (25 nm, 50 nm, and 75 nm) were fabricated by a two-step anodizing procedure in oxalic acid. The surface morphology and elemental composition of PAA were characterized by field emission scanning electron microscopy and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy analysis. The nanopore arrays on all of the PAA samples were highly regular. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy analysis suggested that the chemistry of PAA and flat aluminum surfaces were similar. However, contact angles were significantly greater on all of the PAA compared to flat aluminum substrates, which consequently altered protein adsorption profiles. The attachment and proliferation of preosteoblasts were determined for up to 7 days in culture using field emission scanning electron microscopy and a Cell Counting Kit-8. Results showed that nanoporous surfaces did not enhance initial preosteoblast attachment, whereas preosteoblast proliferation dramatically increased when the PAA pore size was either 50 nm or 75 nm compared to all other samples (P<0.05). Thus, this study showed that one can alter surface energy of aluminum by modifying surface nano-roughness alone (and not changing chemistry) through an anodization process to improve osteoblast density, and, thus, should be further studied as a bioactive interface for orthopedic applications. PMID:25045263

  10. Improving animal and human health through understanding liver fluke immunology.

    PubMed

    Piedrafita, D; Spithill, T W; Smith, R E; Raadsma, H W

    2010-08-01

    Sheep, goats and cattle represent the most numerous and economically important agricultural species worldwide used as sources for milk, fibre and red meat. In addition, in the developing world, these species often represent the sole asset base for small-holder livestock farmers and cattle/buffaloes often provide the majority of draught power for crop production. Production losses caused by helminth diseases of these animals are a major factor in extending the cycle of poverty in developing countries and a major food security issue for developed economies. Fasciola spp. are one of the most important zoonotic diseases with a global economic impact in livestock production systems and a poorly defined but direct effect on human health. Improvements in human and animal health will require a concerted research effort into the development of new accurate and simple diagnostic tests and increased vaccine and drug development against Fasciola infections. Here, the use of definitive natural host breeds with contrasting resistance to Fasciola infections is discussed as a resource to contrast parasite-host interactions and identify parasite immune evasion strategies. Such studies are likely to boost the discovery of new vaccine, drug and diagnostic candidates and provide the foundation for future genetic selection of resistant animals.

  11. Understanding

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Buxkemper, Andra C.; Hartfiel, D. J.

    2003-01-01

    There is no common agreement on the meaning of the word "understand". However, there is agreement on what students should be able to do with material they understand. Bloom et al. discuss kinds of tasks a student should be able to do, provided that the student understands. In a similar way, Biggs and Collis provide a taxonomy intended to evaluate…

  12. From Dropout to High Achiever: An Understanding of Academic Excellence through the Ethnography of High and Low Achieving Secondary School Students.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cuellar, Alfredo

    This paper, a follow-up to a previous review of literature on academic excellence that synthesized information from the United States and Mexico, describes an ethnographic study of high-achieving and low-achieving Hispanic secondary school students from Calexico, California and Mexicali, Baja California Mexico. Five students for each group were…

  13. Achieving Healthy School Siting and Planning Policies: Understanding Shared Concerns of Environmental Planners, Public Health Professionals, and Educators

    PubMed Central

    Cohen, Alison

    2013-01-01

    Policy decisions regarding the quality of the physical school environment—both, school siting and school facility planning policies—are often considered through the lens of environmental planning, public health, or education policy, but rarely through all three. Environmental planners consider environmental justice issues on a local level and/or consider the regional impact of a school. Public health professionals focus on toxic exposures and populations particularly vulnerable to negative health outcomes. Educators and education policymakers emphasize investing in human capital of both students and staff. By understanding these respective angles and combining these efforts around the common goals of achieving adequacy and excellence, we can work towards a regulatory system for school facilities that recognizes children as a uniquely vulnerable population and seeks to create healthier school environments in which children can learn and adults can work. PMID:20359991

  14. Achieving healthy school siting and planning policies: understanding shared concerns of environmental planners, public health professionals, and educators.

    PubMed

    Cohen, Alison

    2010-01-01

    Policy decisions regarding the quality of the physical school environment-both, school siting and school facility planning policies-are often considered through the lens of environmental planning, public health, or education policy, but rarely through all three. Environmental planners consider environmental justice issues on a local level and/or consider the regional impact of a school. Public health professionals focus on toxic exposures and populations particularly vulnerable to negative health outcomes. Educators and education policymakers emphasize investing in human capital of both students and staff. By understanding these respective angles and combining these efforts around the common goals of achieving adequacy and excellence, we can work toward a regulatory system for school facilities that recognizes children as a uniquely vulnerable population and seeks to create healthier school environments in which children can learn and adults can work.

  15. The Sustainable Development Goals cannot be achieved without improving maternal and child nutrition.

    PubMed

    Baye, Kaleab

    2017-02-01

    Poor nutrition is a global pandemic with social, economic, and environmental causes and consequences. Of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), only SDG2 explicitly mentions nutrition. Turning the aspirations of the SDGs into reality will require recognition that good nutrition ensured through sustainable agriculture, is simultaneously an absolutely fundamental input and output. Because all of the other SDGs are directly or indirectly linked to improving nutrition, funding to improve nutrition is essential to success for many SDGs. Greater focus on cooperation across disciplines to advance the science of program delivery and to understand the full contribution of nutrition to many desirable outcomes as part of development are surely the ways forward. Missing today's opportunities to advance thinking and program implementation for more effectively improving nutrition for all, especially for women and children, will lead to a wider failure to meet the SDGs.

  16. How to achieve synergy between medical education and cognitive neuroscience? An exercise on prior knowledge in understanding.

    PubMed

    Ruiter, Dirk J; van Kesteren, Marlieke T R; Fernandez, Guillen

    2012-05-01

    A major challenge in contemporary research is how to connect medical education and cognitive neuroscience and achieve synergy between these domains. Based on this starting point we discuss how this may result in a common language about learning, more educationally focused scientific inquiry, and multidisciplinary research projects. As the topic of prior knowledge in understanding plays a strategic role in both medical education and cognitive neuroscience it is used as a central element in our discussion. A critical condition for the acquisition of new knowledge is the existence of prior knowledge, which can be built in a mental model or schema. Formation of schemas is a central event in student-centered active learning, by which mental models are constructed and reconstructed. These theoretical considerations from cognitive psychology foster scientific discussions that may lead to salient issues and questions for research with cognitive neuroscience. Cognitive neuroscience attempts to understand how knowledge, insight and experience are established in the brain and to clarify their neural correlates. Recently, evidence has been obtained that new information processed by the hippocampus can be consolidated into a stable, neocortical network more rapidly if this new information fits readily into a schema. Opportunities for medical education and medical education research can be created in a fruitful dialogue within an educational multidisciplinary platform. In this synergetic setting many questions can be raised by educational scholars interested in evidence-based education that may be highly relevant for integrative research and the further development of medical education.

  17. Modified surface loading process for achieving improved performance of the quantum dot-sensitized solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Feng; Jin, Zhongxiu; Zhu, Jun; Xu, Yafeng; Zhou, Li; Dai, Songyuan

    2016-06-01

    Achieving high surface coverage of the colloidal quantum dots (QDs) on TiO2 films has been challenging for quantum dot-sensitized solar cells (QDSCs). Herein, a general surface engineering approach was proposed to increase the loading of these QDs. It was found that S2- treatment/QD re-uptake process can significantly improve the attachment of the QDs on TiO2 films. Surface concentration of the QDs was improved by ∼60%, which in turn greatly enhances light absorption and decreases carrier recombination in QDSCs. Ensuing QDSCs with optimized QD loading exhibit a power conversion efficiency of 3.66%, 83% higher than those fabricated with standard procedures.

  18. US objectives generally achieved at broadcasting satellite international conference. Improvements can help in future conferences

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    1984-08-01

    The implementation of broadcasting satellite service for the Western Hemisphere was planned. Broadcasting satellites transmit television programs and other information services from Earth orbit to home or office antennas. At the request of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, State and the Judiciary, GAO reviewed conference results as compared to established conference objectives and examined the interagency coordination of U.S. participation in this international conference. The United States basically achieved its two most important conference objectives: adopting a technically and procedurally flexible plan for broadcasting satellite service and obtaining a sufficient allocation of satellite orbit slots and frequencies to meet domestic needs. The U.S. was unable, however, to obtain agreement on adopting a maximum signal power level for satellites. The Department of State could improve its preparation, internal coordination, and administrative support for future international conferences and recommends actions to the Secretary of State to improve its international telecommunications activities.

  19. Engaging Students Through Classroom Connection Webinars to Improve Their Understanding of the Mars Science Laboratory Mission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Graff, Paige V.; Achilles, Cherie

    2013-01-01

    Planetary exploration missions to other worlds, like Mars, can generate a lot of excitement and wonder for the public. The Mars Science Laboratory Mission is one of the latest planetary missions that has intrigued the public perhaps more than most. How can scientists and educational specialists capitalize on the allure of this mission and involve students and teachers in a way that not only shares the story of the mission, but actively engages classrooms with scientists and improves their understanding of the science? The Expedition Earth and Beyond (EEAB) Program [1], facilitated by the Astromaterials Research and Exploration Science (ARES) Directorate Education Program at the NASA Johnson Space Center achieves this by facilitating MSL mission focused classroom connection webinars. Five MSL-focused webinars facilitated through EEAB during the 2012 fall semester engaged almost 3000 students and teachers. Involved STEM experts/role models helped translate the science behind the Mars Science Laboratory mission in a comprehensive, exciting, and engaging manner. These virtual events captured participants attention while increasing their science awareness and understanding of the MSL mission.

  20. Quality improvement in diabetes--successful in achieving better care with hopes for prevention.

    PubMed

    Haw, J Sonya; Narayan, K M Venkat; Ali, Mohammed K

    2015-09-01

    Diabetes affects 29 million Americans and is associated with billions of dollars in health expenditures and lost productivity. Robust evidence has shown that lifestyle interventions in people at high risk for diabetes and comprehensive management of cardiometabolic risk factors like glucose, blood pressure, and lipids can delay the onset of diabetes and its complications, respectively. However, realizing the "triple aim" of better health, better care, and lower cost in diabetes has been hampered by low adoption of lifestyle interventions to prevent diabetes and poor achievement of care goals for those with diabetes. To achieve better care, a number of quality improvement (QI) strategies targeting the health system, healthcare providers, and/or patients have been evaluated in both controlled trials and real-world programs, and have shown some successes, though barriers still impede wider adoption, effectiveness, real-world feasibility, and scalability. Here, we summarize the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness data regarding QI strategies in diabetes care and discuss the potential role of quality monitoring and QI in trying to implement primary prevention of diabetes more widely and effectively. Over time, achieving better care and better health will likely help bend the ever-growing cost curve.

  1. Leveraging Improvements in Precipitation Measuring from GPM Mission to Achieve Prediction Improvements in Climate, Weather and Hydrometeorology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smith, Eric A.

    2002-01-01

    The main scientific goal of the GPM mission, currently planned for start in the 2007 time frame, is to investigate important scientific problems arising within the context of global and regional water cycles. These problems cut across a hierarchy of scales and include climate-water cycle interactions, techniques for improving weather and climate predictions, and better methods for combining observed precipitation with hydrometeorological prediction models for applications to hazardous flood-producing storms, seasonal flood/draught conditions, and fresh water resource assessments. The GPM mission will expand the scope of precipitation measurement through the use of a constellation of some 9 satellites, one of which will be an advanced TRMM-like "core" satellite carrying a dual-frequency Ku-Ka band precipitation radar and an advanced, multifrequency passive microwave radiometer with vertical-horizontal polarization discrimination. The other constellation members will include new dedicated satellites and co-existing Operational/research satellites carrying similar (but not identical) passive microwave radiometers. The goal of the constellation is to achieve approximately 3-hour sampling at any spot on the globe. The constellation's orbit architecture will consist of a mix of sun-synchronous and non-sun-synchronous satellites with the core satellite providing measurements of cloud-precipitation microphysical processes plus calibration-quality rainrate retrievals to be used with the other retrieval information to ensure bias-free constellation coverage. GPM is organized internationally, currently involving a partnership between NASA in the US and the National Space Development Agency in Japan. Additionally, the program is actively pursuing agreements with other international partners and domestic scientific agencies and institutions, as well as participation by individual scientists from academia, government, and the private sector to fulfill mission goals and to pave

  2. Interprofessional Curbside Consults to Develop Team Communication and Improve Student Achievement of Learning Outcomes.

    PubMed

    Kirwin, Jennifer; Greenwood, Kristin Curry; Rico, Janet; Nalliah, Romesh; DiVall, Margarita

    2017-02-25

    Objective. To design and implement a series of activities focused on developing interprofessional communication skills and to assess the impact of the activities on students' attitudes and achievement of educational goals. Design. Prior to the first pharmacy practice skills laboratory session, pharmacy students listened to a classroom lecture about team communication and viewed short videos describing the roles, responsibilities, and usual work environments of four types of health care professionals. In each of four subsequent laboratory sessions, students interacted with a different standardized health care professional role-played by a pharmacy faculty member who asked them a medication-related question. Students responded in verbal and written formats. Assessment. Student performance was assessed with a three-part rubric. The impact of the exercise was assessed by conducting pre- and post-intervention surveys and analyzing students' performance on relevant Center for the Advancement of Pharmacy Education (CAPE) outcomes. Survey results showed improvement in student attitudes related to team-delivered care. Students' performance on the problem solver and collaborator CAPE outcomes improved, while performance on the educator outcome worsened. Conclusions. The addition of an interprofessional communication activity with standardized health care professionals provided the opportunity for students to develop skills related to team communication. Students felt the activity was valuable and realistic; however, analysis of outcome achievement from the exercise revealed a need for more exposure to team communication skills.

  3. Interprofessional Curbside Consults to Develop Team Communication and Improve Student Achievement of Learning Outcomes

    PubMed Central

    Greenwood, Kristin Curry; Rico, Janet; Nalliah, Romesh; DiVall, Margarita

    2017-01-01

    Objective. To design and implement a series of activities focused on developing interprofessional communication skills and to assess the impact of the activities on students’ attitudes and achievement of educational goals. Design. Prior to the first pharmacy practice skills laboratory session, pharmacy students listened to a classroom lecture about team communication and viewed short videos describing the roles, responsibilities, and usual work environments of four types of health care professionals. In each of four subsequent laboratory sessions, students interacted with a different standardized health care professional role-played by a pharmacy faculty member who asked them a medication-related question. Students responded in verbal and written formats. Assessment. Student performance was assessed with a three-part rubric. The impact of the exercise was assessed by conducting pre- and post-intervention surveys and analyzing students’ performance on relevant Center for the Advancement of Pharmacy Education (CAPE) outcomes. Survey results showed improvement in student attitudes related to team-delivered care. Students’ performance on the problem solver and collaborator CAPE outcomes improved, while performance on the educator outcome worsened. Conclusions. The addition of an interprofessional communication activity with standardized health care professionals provided the opportunity for students to develop skills related to team communication. Students felt the activity was valuable and realistic; however, analysis of outcome achievement from the exercise revealed a need for more exposure to team communication skills. PMID:28289305

  4. Improving quality and reducing inequities: a challenge in achieving best care

    PubMed Central

    Nicewander, David A.; Qin, Huanying; Ballard, David J.

    2006-01-01

    The health care quality chasm is better described as a gulf for certain segments of the population, such as racial and ethnic minority groups, given the gap between actual care received and ideal or best care quality. The landmark Institute of Medicine report Crossing the Quality Chasm: A New Health System for the 21st Century challenges all health care organizations to pursue six major aims of health care improvement: safety, timeliness, effectiveness, efficiency, equity, and patient-centeredness. “Equity” aims to ensure that quality care is available to all and that the quality of care provided does not differ by race, ethnicity, or other personal characteristics unrelated to a patient's reason for seeking care. Baylor Health Care System is in the unique position of being able to examine the current state of equity in a typical health care delivery system and to lead the way in health equity research. Its organizational vision, “culture of quality,” and involved leadership bode well for achieving equitable best care. However, inequities in access, use, and outcomes of health care must be scrutinized; the moral, ethical, and economic issues they raise and the critical injustice they create must be remedied if this goal is to be achieved. Eliminating any observed inequities in health care must be synergistically integrated with quality improvement. Quality performance indicators currently collected and evaluated indicate that Baylor Health Care System often performs better than the national average. However, there are significant variations in care by age, gender, race/ethnicity, and socioeconomic status that indicate the many remaining challenges in achieving “best care” for all. PMID:16609733

  5. Employee Perceptions of Progress with Implementing a Student-Centered Model of Institutional Improvement: An Achieving the Dream Case Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cheek, Annesa LeShawn

    2011-01-01

    Achieving the Dream is a national initiative focused on helping more community college students succeed, particularly students of color and low-income students. Achieving the Dream's student-centered model of institutional improvement focuses on eliminating gaps and raising student achievement by helping institutions build a culture of evidence…

  6. From Guide to Practice: Improving Your After School Science Program to Increase Student Academic Achievement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taylor, J.

    2013-12-01

    Numerous science organizations, such as NASA, offer educational outreach activities geared towards after school. For some programs, the primary goal is to grow students' love of science. For others, the programs are also intended to increase academic achievement. For those programs looking to support student learning in out-of-school time environments, aligning the program with learning during the classroom day can be a challenge. The Institute for Education Sciences, What Works Clearinghouse, put together a 'Practice Guide' for maximizing learning time beyond the regular school day. These practice guides provide concrete recommendations for educators supported by research. While this guide is not specific to any content or subject-area, the recommendations provided align very well with science education. After school science is often viewed as a fun, dynamic environment for students. Indeed, one of the recommendations to ensure time is structured according to students' needs is to provide relevant and interesting experiences. Given that our after school programs provide such creative environments for students, what other components are needed to promote increased academic achievement? The recommendations provided to academic achievement, include: 1. Align Instruction, 2. Maximize Attendance and Participation, 3. Adapt Instruction, 4. Provide Engaging Experiences, and 5. Evaluate Program. In this session we will examine these five recommendations presented in the Practice Guide, discuss how these strategies align with science programs, and examine what questions each program should address in order to provide experiences that lend themselves to maximizing instruction. Roadblocks and solutions for overcoming challenges in each of the five areas will be presented. Jessica Taylor will present this research based on her role as an author on the Practice Guide, 'Improving Academic Achievement in Out-of-School Time' and her experience working in various informal science

  7. Bovine brucellosis in wildlife: using adaptive management to improve understanding, technology and suppression.

    PubMed

    White, P J; Treanor, J J; Geremia, C; Wallen, R L; Blanton, D W; Hallac, D E

    2013-04-01

    Eradication of brucellosis from bison (Bison bison) and elk (Cervus elaphus) populations in the Greater Yellowstone Area is not possible with current technology. There are considerable uncertainties regarding the effectiveness of management techniques and unintended effects on wildlife behaviour and demography. However, adaptive management provides a framework for learning about the disease, improving suppression techniques, and lowering brucellosis transmission among wildlife and to cattle. Since it takes approximately three years after birth for female bison to become reproductively active and contribute to brucellosis transmission, there is an opportunity to implement actions such as vaccination and the selective removal of infectious bison based on age and assay results to reduce the potential for transmission. Older adult bison that have been exposed to the bacteria, but recovered from acute infection, could be retained in the population to provide some immunity (resistance) against future transmission. Through careful predictions, research, and monitoring, our understanding and technology will be improved and management actions can be adjusted to better achieve desired outcomes.

  8. Air pollution and public health: emerging hazards and improved understanding of risk.

    PubMed

    Kelly, Frank J; Fussell, Julia C

    2015-08-01

    Despite past improvements in air quality, very large parts of the population in urban areas breathe air that does not meet European standards let alone the health-based World Health Organisation Air Quality Guidelines. Over the last 10 years, there has been a substantial increase in findings that particulate matter (PM) air pollution is not only exerting a greater impact on established health endpoints, but is also associated with a broader number of disease outcomes. Data strongly suggest that effects have no threshold within the studied range of ambient concentrations, can occur at levels close to PM2.5 background concentrations and that they follow a mostly linear concentration-response function. Having firmly established this significant public health problem, there has been an enormous effort to identify what it is in ambient PM that affects health and to understand the underlying biological basis of toxicity by identifying mechanistic pathways-information that in turn will inform policy makers how best to legislate for cleaner air. Another intervention in moving towards a healthier environment depends upon the achieving the right public attitude and behaviour by the use of optimal air pollution monitoring, forecasting and reporting that exploits increasingly sophisticated information systems. Improving air quality is a considerable but not an intractable challenge. Translating the correct scientific evidence into bold, realistic and effective policies undisputedly has the potential to reduce air pollution so that it no longer poses a damaging and costly toll on public health.

  9. Techniques for mass resolution improvement achieved by typical plasma mass analyzers: Modeling and simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nicolaou, Georgios; Yamauchi, Masatoshi; Wieser, Martin; Barabash, Stas; Fedorov, Andrei

    2016-04-01

    Mass separation and particularly distinction between atomic ions and molecular ions are essential in understanding a wide range of plasma environments, with each consisted of different species with various properties. In this study we present the optimization results of light-weight (about 2 kg) magnetic mass analyzers with high g-factor for Rosetta (Ion Composition Analyser: ICA) and for Mars Express and Venus Express (Ion Mass Analyser: IMA). For the instrument's optimization we use SIMION, a 3D ion tracing software in which we can trace particle beams of several energies and directions, passing through the instrument's units. We first reproduced ICA and IMA results, which turned out to be different from simple models for low energy (< 100 eV). We then change the mechanical structure of several units of the instrument and we quantify the new mass resolution achieved with each change. Our goal is to find the optimal instrument's structure, which will allow us to achieve a proper mass resolution to distinguish atomic nitrogen from atomic oxygen for the purposes of a future magnetospheric mission.

  10. Educating Everybody's Children: Diverse Teaching Strategies for Diverse Learners. What Research and Practice Say about Improving Achievement.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cole, Robert W., Ed.

    The culmination of work by the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development's (ASCD) Urban Middle Grades Network, a special Advisory Panel on Improving Student Achievement, and the Improving Student Achievement Research Panel, this book proposes a repertoire of tools for educators meeting the needs of an increasingly diverse student…

  11. Charting the course for home health care quality: action steps for achieving sustainable improvement: conference proceedings.

    PubMed

    Feldman, Penny Hollander; Peterson, Laura E; Reische, Laurie; Bruno, Lori; Clark, Amy

    2004-12-01

    On June 30 and July 1, 2003, the first national meeting Charting the Course for Home Health Care Quality: Action Steps for Achieving Sustainable Improvement convened in New York City. The Center for Home Care Policy & Research of the Visiting Nurse Service of New York (VNSNY) hosted the meeting with support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Fifty-seven attendees from throughout the United States participated. The participants included senior leaders and managers and nurses working directly in home care today. The meeting's objectives were to: 1. foster dialogue among key constituents influencing patient safety and home care, 2. promote information-sharing across sectors and identify areas where more information is needed, and, 3. develop an agenda and strategy for moving forward. This article reports the meeting's proceedings.

  12. Optimization of Oxidation Temperature for Commercially Pure Titanium to Achieve Improved Corrosion Resistance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bansal, Rajesh; Singh, J. K.; Singh, Vakil; Singh, D. D. N.; Das, Parimal

    2017-03-01

    Thermal oxidation of commercially pure titanium (cp-Ti) was carried out at different temperatures, ranging from 200 to 900 °C to achieve optimum corrosion resistance of the thermally treated surface in simulated body fluid. Scanning electron microscopy, x-ray diffraction, Raman spectroscopy and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy techniques were used to characterize the oxides and assess their protective properties exposed in the test electrolyte. Maximum resistance toward corrosion was observed for samples oxidized at 500 °C. This was attributed to the formation of a composite layer of oxides at this temperature comprising Ti2O3 (titanium sesquioxide), anatase and rutile phases of TiO2 on the surface of cp-Ti. Formation of an intact and pore-free oxide-substrate interface also improved its corrosion resistance.

  13. An improvement in land cover classification achieved by merging microwave data with Landsat multispectral scanner data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wu, S. T.

    1980-01-01

    The improvement in land cover classification achieved by merging microwave data with Landsat MSS data is examined. To produce a merged data set for analysis and comparison, a registration procedure by which a set of Seasat SAR digital data was merged with the MSS data is described. The Landsat MSS data and the merged Landsat/Seasat data sets were processed using conventional multichannel spectral pattern recognition techniques. An analysis of the classified data sets indicates that while Landsat data delineate different forest types (i.e., deciduous/coniferous) and allow some species separation, SAR data provide additional information related to plant canopy configuration and vegetation density as associated with varying water regimes, and therefore allow for further subdivision in the classification of forested wetlands of the coastal region of the southern United States.

  14. Optimization of Oxidation Temperature for Commercially Pure Titanium to Achieve Improved Corrosion Resistance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bansal, Rajesh; Singh, J. K.; Singh, Vakil; Singh, D. D. N.; Das, Parimal

    2017-02-01

    Thermal oxidation of commercially pure titanium (cp-Ti) was carried out at different temperatures, ranging from 200 to 900 °C to achieve optimum corrosion resistance of the thermally treated surface in simulated body fluid. Scanning electron microscopy, x-ray diffraction, Raman spectroscopy and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy techniques were used to characterize the oxides and assess their protective properties exposed in the test electrolyte. Maximum resistance toward corrosion was observed for samples oxidized at 500 °C. This was attributed to the formation of a composite layer of oxides at this temperature comprising Ti2O3 (titanium sesquioxide), anatase and rutile phases of TiO2 on the surface of cp-Ti. Formation of an intact and pore-free oxide-substrate interface also improved its corrosion resistance.

  15. Achieving health, safety, and performance improvements through enhanced cost visibility and workplace partnerships.

    PubMed

    Grant, Katharyn A; Garland, John G; Joachim, Todd C; Wallen, Andrew; Vital, Twyla

    2003-01-01

    Reduction in the environment, safety, and occupational health (ESOH) component of operational costs requires not only a better understanding of ESOH costs and requirements, but also the formation of effective partnerships between ESOH professionals, financial analysts, and shop workers to identify viable improvements to current practices. This article presents two case studies of efforts to enhance productivity and ESOH in corrosion control facilities at Randolph Air Force Base (AFB), Texas, and Robins AFB, Ga. At each site, activity-based cost models were created to increase the visibility of ESOH-related costs and target improvement opportunities. Analysis of the strip-and-paint processes for the T-38 aircraft at Randolph and the F-15 radome and C-141 aft cowl at Robins revealed that a large proportion of operating costs were tied to ESOH requirements and practices (22 and 39%, respectively). In each case ESOH professionals teamed with shop personnel to identify potential improvements in personal protective equipment use, waste disposal, tool selection, and work methods. This approach yielded alternatives projected to reduce total shop costs by 5 to 7%. This case study demonstrates how workplaces can identify cost-saving and efficiency-enhancing practices by partnering with ESOH professionals in planning and decision-making activities.

  16. The Stories Clinicians Tell: Achieving High Reliability and Improving Patient Safety

    PubMed Central

    Cohen, Daniel L; Stewart, Kevin O

    2016-01-01

    The patient safety movement has been deeply affected by the stories patients have shared that have identified numerous opportunities for improvements in safety. These stories have identified system and/or human inefficiencies or dysfunctions, possibly even failures, often resulting in patient harm. Although patients’ stories tell us much, less commonly heard are the stories of clinicians and how their personal observations regarding the environments they work in and the circumstances and pressures under which they work may degrade patient safety and lead to harm. If the health care industry is to function like a high-reliability industry, to improve its processes and achieve the outcomes that patients rightly deserve, then leaders and managers must seek and value input from those on the front lines—both clinicians and patients. Stories from clinicians provided in this article address themes that include incident identification, disclosure and transparency, just culture, the impact of clinical workload pressures, human factors liabilities, clinicians as secondary victims, the impact of disruptive and punitive behaviors, factors affecting professional morale, and personal failings. PMID:26580146

  17. Improved understanding and control of magnesium-doped gallium nitride by plasma assisted molecular beam epitaxy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burnham, Shawn D.

    By an improved understanding of Mg-doped GaN through an exhaustive review of current limitations, increased control over the material was achieved by addressing several of these issues. To address the issues of the memory effect, low sticking coefficient and high vapor pressure of Mg, a new Mg dopant source was implemented, characterized and modeled for p-type doping of GaN. The device enhanced the sticking coefficient of Mg by energizing the outgoing Mg flux, and also allowed the first reported demonstration of an abrupt junction between two non-zero Mg concentrations and a graded Mg-doped GaN film. The significant compensation of Mg acceptors at high dopant concentrations was used advantageously to develop a new ex situ resistivity analysis technique using the energy distributions of SIMS to characterize doping of buried layers. The new technique was used to identify the barrier between conductive and resistive Mg doping for increased Mg concentration, which was then used to optimize Mg-doped GaN. Because Mg doping exhibits a dependence upon the growth regime, a new growth and regime characterization technique was developed using specific RHEED intensity responses to repeat growth conditions. During the development of this technique, a new surface kinetics growth model for III-nitrides was discovered based on DMS observations, which suggests preferential buildup of the metal bilayer before growth begins with an unfamiliar cation-anion exchange process initially upon metal shutter opening. Using the new RHEED growth and regime characterization technique, a new growth technique called metal modulated epitaxy (MME) was developed to increase repeatability, uniformity and smoothness. The MME technique was enhanced with a closed-loop control using real-time feedback from RHEED transients to control shutter transitions. This enhancement, called "smart shuttering," led to improved growth rate and further improvement of surface roughness and grain size, which were

  18. Improving production of 11C to achieve high specific labelled radiopharmaceuticals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Savio, E.; García, O.; Trindade, V.; Buccino, P.; Giglio, J.; Balter, H.; Engler, H.

    2012-12-01

    Molecular imaging is usually based on the recognition by the radiopharmaceuticals of specific sites which are present in limited number or density in the cells or biological tissues. Thus is of high importance to label the radiopharmaceuticals with high specific activity to be able to achieve a high target to non target ratio. The presence of carbon dioxide (CO2) from the air containing 98,88% of 12C and 1,12% 13C compete with 11CO2 produced at the cyclotron. In order to minimize the presence of these isotopes along the process of irradiation, transferring and synthesis of radiopharmaceuticals labelled with 11C, we applied this method: previous to the irradiation the target was 3-4 times flushed with He (5.7) as a cold cleaning, followed by a similar conditioning of the line, from the target up to the module, and finally a hot cleaning in order to desorb 12CO2 and 13CO2, this was performed by irradiation during 1 min at 5 uA (3 times). In addition, with the aim of improving quality of gases in the target and in the modules, water traps (Agilent) were incorporated in the inlet lines of the target and modules. Target conditioning process (cold and hot flushings) as well as line cleaning, allowing the desorption of unlabelled CO2, together with the increasing of gas purity in the irradiation and in the synthesis, were critical parameters that enable to achieve 11C-radiopharamaceuticals with high specific activity, mainly in the case of 11C-PIB.

  19. Structuring Out-of-School Time to Improve Academic Achievement. IES Practice Guide. NCEE 2009-012

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Beckett, Megan; Borman, Geoffrey; Capizzano, Jeffrey; Parsley, Danette; Ross, Steven; Schirm, Allen; Taylor, Jessica

    2009-01-01

    Out-of-school time programs can enhance academic achievement by helping students learn outside the classroom. The purpose of this practice guide is to provide recommendations for organizing and delivering school-based out-of-school time (OST) programs to improve the academic achievement of student participants. The five recommendations in this…

  20. Conference on Improving Minority and At-Risk Student Achievement: Blueprint for Excellence Proceedings Report. (Raleigh, NC, March 10, 1997).

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    North Carolina State Dept. of Public Instruction, Raleigh. Div. of Accountability Services/Research.

    The Conference on Improving Minority and At-Risk Student Achievement was convened to help educators, parents, community, and business leaders in North Carolina focus in strategies and ideas that work to raise student achievement levels for low-performing students. This report summarizes the remarks of Michael Garrett, the keynote address of Asa…

  1. Improving Science Achievement and Attitudes of Students With and Without Learning Disabilities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sanders-White, Pamela

    The primary purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of structured note-taking compared to traditional note-taking on the acquisition of scientific knowledge for students with and without learning disabilities (LD) and students with reading difficulties (RD). An additional purpose was to examine whether the two note-taking methods affected students' attitudes toward science. The sample population consisted of 203 fifth grade students across four public schools in the southern area of the United States. A standardized instrument aligned to Florida's science standards was used to measure the acquisition of scientific knowledge and the Test of Science-Related Attitudes (TOSRA) was used to measure seven distinct science-related attitudes. For meaningful analyses, students with LD and students with RD were collapsed to form a single group due to the small numbers of participants in each of the subgroups; the collapsed group was referred to as "low achievers." A three-way repeated measures ANOVA was conducted to determine the effects of the pretest-posttest Science Interim assessment by group, type of student, and gender. The pretest-posttest Science Interim assessment scores were the within-group factor, while group, type of student, and gender were the between-groups factors. Results revealed that there was a significant interaction between the pretest-posttest Science Interim assessment and group, F(1, 191) = 9.320, p = .003, indicating that scientific knowledge scores increased for the experimental group, but decreased for the control group. Results also indicated that there was a significant three-way interaction between the pretest-posttest Science Interim assessment, group, and gender, F(1, 191) = 5.197, p = .024, showing that all participants in the experimental group improved their scores; while in the control group, female scores decreased and male scores increased. Participants in the experimental and control groups did not show improved attitudes

  2. Effects of Student Teams-Achievement Divisions Cooperative Learning with Models on Students' Understanding of Electrochemical Cells

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Karaçöp, Ataman

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this study was to determine the effect of Student Teams-Achievement Divisions cooperative learning with models on academic achievements of undergraduate university students attending classes in which the electrochemical cells. The sample of research was comprised of 70 students from first class of science teacher education program…

  3. Understanding Gender Differences in Achievement on the Social Studies Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills: An Interactive Qualitative Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ungurait, Michelle D.

    2007-01-01

    The Texas Education Agency's Social Studies Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills results show an achievement gap between males and females for every criteria on every test given since 2003. The most dramatic achievement difference is in the area of "traditional" U.S. History. The Texas results mimic a gender gap reported by College…

  4. Automated monitoring: a potential solution for achieving sustainable improvement in hand hygiene practices.

    PubMed

    Levchenko, Alexander I; Boscart, Veronique M; Fernie, Geoff R

    2014-08-01

    Adequate hand hygiene is often considered as the most effective method of reducing the rates of hospital-acquired infections, which are one of the major causes of increased cost, morbidity, and mortality in healthcare. Electronic monitoring technologies provide a promising direction for achieving sustainable hand hygiene improvement by introducing the elements of automated feedback and creating the possibility to automatically collect individual hand hygiene performance data. The results of the multiphase testing of an automated hand hygiene reminding and monitoring system installed in a complex continuing care setting are presented. The study included a baseline Phase 1, with the system performing automated data collection only, a preintervention Phase 2 with hand hygiene status indicator enabled, two intervention Phases 3 and 4 with the system generating hand hygiene reminding signals and periodic performance feedback sessions provided, and a postintervention Phase 5 with only hand hygiene status indicator enabled and no feedback sessions provided. A significant increase in hand hygiene performance observed during the first intervention Phase 3 was sustained over the second intervention Phase 4, with the postintervention phase also indicating higher hand hygiene activity rates compared with the preintervention and baseline phases. The overall trends observed during the multiphase testing, the factors affecting acceptability of the automated hand hygiene monitoring system, and various strategies of technology deployment are discussed.

  5. Solute Enhanced Strain Hardening of Aluminum Alloys to Achieve Improved Combinations of Strength and Toughness

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hovanec, Christopher James

    2011-12-01

    The feasibility of achieving improved combinations of strength and toughness in aluminum alloy 2524 through solute enhanced strain hardening (SESH) has been explored in this study and shown to be viable. The effectiveness of SESH is directly dependent on the strain hardening rate (SHR) of the material being processed. Aluminum alloy 2524 naturally ages to the T4-temper after solution heat treating and quenching. The SHR of strain free and post cold rolled material as a function of natural aging time has been measured by means of simple compression. It has been determined that the SHR of AA2524 is more effective with solute in solution rather than clustered into GP zones. It has also been shown that the typical rapid formation of GP zones at room temperature (natural aging) is inhibited by moderate cold rolling strains (□CR ≥ 0.2) through dislocation aided vacancy annihilation. The practical limitations of quenching rate have been determined using hardness and eddy current electrical conductivity measurements. It has been shown that too slow of a quench rate results in solute being lost to both the formation of GP zones and embrittling precipitates during the quench, while too rapid of a quench rate results in mid-plane cracking of the work piece during the SESH processing. The mid-plane cracking was overcome by using an uphill quenching procedure to relieve residual stresses within the work piece. Aluminum alloy 2524 strengthened through SESH to a yield strength 11% greater than that in the T6-Temper exhibits: equivalent toughness, 5% greater UTS, 1% greater elongation, 7% greater R.A., and absorbs 15% more energy during tensile testing. At yield strengths comparable to published data for 2x24 alloys, the SESH 2524 exhibited up to a 60% increase in fracture toughness. The fractured surfaces of the SESH material exhibited transgranular dimpled rupture as opposed to the grain boundary ductile fracture (GBPF) observed in the artificially aged material.

  6. 41 CFR 102-193.25 - What type of records management business process improvements should my agency strive to achieve?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... management business process improvements should my agency strive to achieve? 102-193.25 Section 102-193.25...-193.25 What type of records management business process improvements should my agency strive to... correspondence; (b) Design forms that are easy to fill-in, read, transmit, process, and retrieve, and...

  7. 41 CFR 102-193.25 - What type of records management business process improvements should my agency strive to achieve?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... 41 Public Contracts and Property Management 3 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false What type of records management business process improvements should my agency strive to achieve? 102-193.25 Section 102-193.25...-193.25 What type of records management business process improvements should my agency strive...

  8. Developing and Improving Modified Achievement Level Descriptors: Rationale, Procedures, and Tools

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Quenemoen, Rachel; Albus, Debra; Rogers, Chris; Lazarus, Sheryl

    2010-01-01

    Some states are developing alternate assessments based on modified achievement standards (AA-MAS) to measure the academic achievement of some students with disabilities (Albus, Lazarus, Thurlow, & Cormier, 2009; Lazarus, Thurlow, Christensen, & Cormier, 2007). These assessments measure the same content as the general assessment for a given…

  9. How Urban School Superintendents Effectively Use Data Driven Decision Making to Improve Student Achievement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Root, Lonny Gene

    2010-01-01

    With the passage of the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act of 2002, schools, districts, and therefore, superintendents have been held increasingly accountable for the achievement of the students. The states and federal governments have used student achievement data to measure the progress and success of schools and districts and have held districts…

  10. Understanding Effective Program Improvement Schools through a Distributed Leadership Task Context Model

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gipson, Frances Marie

    2012-01-01

    Federal, state, and local agencies face challenges organizing resources that create the conditions necessary to create, sustain, and replicate effective high performing schools. Knowing that leadership does impact achievement outcomes and that school districts tackle growing numbers of sanctioned Program Improvement schools, a distributed…

  11. Engineering in K-12 Education: Understanding the Status and Improving the Prospects

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Katehi, Linda, Ed.; Pearson, Greg, Ed.; Feder, Michael, Ed.

    2009-01-01

    Engineering education in K-12 classrooms is a small but growing phenomenon that may have implications for engineering and also for the other STEM subjects--science, technology, and mathematics. Specifically, engineering education may improve student learning and achievement in science and mathematics, increase awareness of engineering and the work…

  12. Surmounting the Challenges of Improving Academic Performance: Closing the Achievement Gap through Social-Emotional and Character Development

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Elias, Maurice J.; White, Gwyne; Stepney, Cesalie

    2014-01-01

    While educators and policy makers have an intuitive understanding of the influence of socioeconomic factors and race on student achievement, these factors make the current emphasis on standardized test scores as a primary criterion for evaluating schools and teachers indefensible and ineffective. The research presented illustrates the limits of…

  13. How to Achieve Synergy between Medical Education and Cognitive Neuroscience? An Exercise on Prior Knowledge in Understanding

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ruiter, Dirk J.; van Kesteren, Marlieke T. R.; Fernandez, Guillen

    2012-01-01

    A major challenge in contemporary research is how to connect medical education and cognitive neuroscience and achieve synergy between these domains. Based on this starting point we discuss how this may result in a common language about learning, more educationally focused scientific inquiry, and multidisciplinary research projects. As the topic of…

  14. "I Would Have Taught You Differently": Bringing an Understanding of the Economy into the Schools. Alliance for Achievement.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rubin, Sarah; Cunniff, Catherine

    This report offers ideas for expanding schools' partnerships with employers. These partnerships can raise academic achievement, college-going rates, and career-awareness for low-income and minority students. Topics include a discussion of the school-to-work movement and career guidance; raising awareness through workplace visits; summer…

  15. Retrospective Understandings: Individual-Collective Influences on High Achieving Black Students at a Predominantly White Institution of Higher Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brooks, Candice Elaine

    2012-01-01

    This article discusses the findings of an exploratory qualitative study that examined the influences of individual and collective sociocultural identities on the community involvements and high academic achievement of 10 Black alumni who attended a predominantly White institution between 1985 and 2008. Syntagmatic narrative analysis and…

  16. What Doesn't Meet the Eye: Understanding and Addressing Racial Disparities in High-Achieving Suburban Schools.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ferguson, Ronald F.

    This paper examines racial and ethnic achievement disparities in places where schools are reputedly excellent, reporting on the 2000-2001 Ed-Excel Assessment of Secondary School Culture, which collected data on black, white, Hispanic, Asian, and mixed race students. Questions covered family characteristics, opinions about instructional quality,…

  17. Understanding the Self-Directed Online Learning Preferences, Goals, Achievements, and Challenges of MIT OpenCourseWare Subscribers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bonk, Curtis J.; Lee, Mimi Miyoung; Kou, Xiaojing; Xu, Shuya; Sheu, Feng-Ru

    2015-01-01

    This research targeted the learning preferences, goals and motivations, achievements, challenges, and possibilities for life change of self-directed online learners who subscribed to the monthly OpenCourseWare (OCW) e-newsletter from MIT. Data collection included a 25-item survey of 1,429 newsletter subscribers; 613 of whom also completed an…

  18. Using the Expectancy Value Model of Motivation to Understand the Relationship between Student Attitudes and Achievement in Statistics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hood, Michelle; Creed, Peter A.; Neumann, David L.

    2012-01-01

    We tested a model of the relationship between attitudes toward statistics and achievement based on Eccles' Expectancy Value Model (1983). Participants (n = 149; 83% female) were second-year Australian university students in a psychology statistics course (mean age = 23.36 years, SD = 7.94 years). We obtained demographic details, past performance,…

  19. Preservice Elementary Teachers' Understandings of Competing Notions of Academic Achievement Coexisting in Post-NCLB Public Schools

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brown, Keffrelyn D.; Goldstein, Lisa S.

    2013-01-01

    Background/Context: Since the 2002 implementation of "No Child Left Behind," teaching in public school contexts has become more complex and challenging. Today, public school teachers at all grade levels are accountable for maintaining a steady focus on their students' academic achievement. However, many teachers have found themselves…

  20. Using Digital Multimedia to Improve Parents’ and Children’s Understanding of Clinical Trials

    PubMed Central

    Tait, Alan R.; Voepel-Lewis, Terri; Levine, Robert

    2015-01-01

    Objective Data show that many research subjects have difficulty understanding study information using traditional paper consent documents. This study, therefore, was designed to evaluate the effect of an interactive multimedia program on improving parents’ and children’s understanding of clinical trial concepts and participation. Methods Parents (n = 148) and children (n = 135) were each randomized to receive information regarding clinical trials using either a traditional paper format (TF) or an interactive iPad program (IP) with in-line exercises. Participants’ understanding of the information was assessed using semi-structured interviews prior to (pre-test) and after (post-test) receiving the information. Participants also completed a short survey to assess their perceptions of the information delivery and satisfaction with the process. Results Regardless of the mode of information delivery, all participants demonstrated improved pre- to post-test understanding. While there were no statistical differences in parents’ post-test understanding between the TF and IP groups, children in the IP group had significantly greater post-test understanding compared with children in the TF group (11.65(4.1) vs 8.85(4.1) [2.8, 1.4,4.2] 0–18 scale where 18 = complete understanding). Furthermore, the IP was found to be significantly “easier to follow” and “more effective” in presenting information compared with the TF. Conclusions Results demonstrated the importance of providing information regarding clinical trial concepts to parents and children. Importantly, the ability of interactive multimedia to improve understanding of clinical trial concepts and satisfaction with information delivery, particularly among children, supports this approach as a novel and effective vehicle for enhancing the informed consent process. PMID:25829422

  1. Improving high school physical science students' understanding of the electromagnetic spectrum: A modified diagram approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Quebedeaux, James Edward

    The focus of this study was to identify major conceptual difficulties that selected public high school physical science students encounter in understanding a standard electromagnetic spectrum diagram. A research-driven, modified version of that standard diagram was used in this study to determine the value added to student understanding of electromagnetic waves. A content analysis was performed on electromagnetic spectrum diagrams found in US textbooks from the 1950s through the present. A class of public high school physical science students participated in a study consisting of four activities conducted during a three-week unit. Students were given a pre- and post-achievement test and a pre- and post-survey on the regions of the electromagnetic spectrum. At the conclusion of each activity, selected students were interviewed and each co-constructed a concept map with the researcher. The Electromagnetic Spectrum Literacy Rubric (ESLR) was designed and used to assess students' conceptual understanding periodically as they proceeded through the unit study. A mixed methods analysis was performed, employing both qualitative and quantitative data. A paired t-test determined that there was a statistically significant difference (p = 0.014) between the pre- and post-achievement test scores for the class of students participating in the unit study. Effect sizes also determined that students have difficulties with mathematical calculations and wave properties. These topics present conceptual challenges which must be overcome to understand and use an electromagnetic spectrum diagram effectively.

  2. Postindustrial Capitalism and the Problems with Bourdieu's Social and Cultural Capital in Understanding the Black/White Achievement Gap in the United States and United Kingdom

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mocombe, Paul C.

    2015-01-01

    This hermeneutical essay demonstrates why and how Pierre Bourdieu's social reproduction theory is neither an adequate explanation for understanding praxis nor the Black/White academic achievement gap in contemporary postindustrial economies like that of the United States and the United Kingdom. The underlining hypothesis of the work is that the…

  3. Development and Evaluation of a Tutorial to Improve Students' Understanding of a Lock-in Amplifier

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    DeVore, Seth; Gauthier, Alexandre; Levy, Jeremy; Singh, Chandralekha

    2016-01-01

    A lock-in amplifier is a versatile instrument frequently used in physics research. However, many students struggle with the basic operating principles of a lock-in amplifier which can lead to a variety of difficulties. To improve students' understanding, we have been developing and evaluating a research-based tutorial which makes use of a computer…

  4. Improving Economic Understanding of Students in Junior College Economic Principles Courses.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Barr, Saul Zusman; Carr, Glenna D.

    1980-01-01

    Describes a study comparing a conventional textbook/lecture teaching method and a teaching method based on current event readings with lectures and class discussions. The study sought to show whether improvement in students' understanding of economics was influenced by teaching method and selected characteristics of students and teachers. (AYC)

  5. Social and Economic Benefits of Improved Adult Literacy: Towards a Better Understanding: Support Document

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hartley, Robyn; Horne, Jackie

    2005-01-01

    This document was produced by the authors based on their research for the report, "Social and Economic Benefits of Improved Adult Literacy: Towards a Better Understanding," and is an added resource for further information. The original document is a feasibility study which explores the frameworks and methodologies available for…

  6. Improving the Conceptual Understanding in Kinematics Subject Matter with Hypertext Media Learning and Formal Thinking

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Manurung, Sondang R.; Mihardi, Satria

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to determine the effectiveness of hypertext media based kinematic learning and formal thinking ability to improve the conceptual understanding of physic prospective students. The research design used is the one-group pretest-posttest experimental design is carried out in the research by taking 36 students on from…

  7. Improving Food Safety by Understanding the Evolution of Egg-contaminating Salmonella Enteritidis

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Improving Food Safety by Understanding the Evolution of Egg-contaminating Salmonella Enteritidis Jean Guard, Veterinary Medical Officer U. S. Department of Agriculture, Athens, GA USA (jean.guard@ars.usda.gov) The curious case of egg contamination by Salmonella enterica serovar Enteritidis S. ...

  8. Scaffolded Instruction Improves Student Understanding of the Scientific Method & Experimental Design

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    D'Costa, Allison R.; Schlueter, Mark A.

    2013-01-01

    Implementation of a guided-inquiry lab in introductory biology classes, along with scaffolded instruction, improved students' understanding of the scientific method, their ability to design an experiment, and their identification of experimental variables. Pre- and postassessments from experimental versus control sections over three semesters…

  9. Improving the Quality and Scientific Understanding of Trophic Magnification Factors (TMFs)

    EPA Science Inventory

    This short 1000 word report presents a series of research needs for improving the measurement and understanding of trophic magnification factors (TMFs). TMFs are useful measures of trophic magnification and represent the diet-weighted average biomagnification factor (BMF) of che...

  10. Managing Resources and Relations in Higher Education Institutions: A Framework for Understanding Performance Improvement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ho, Sophia Shi-Huei; Peng, Michael Yao-Ping

    2016-01-01

    Changes in social systems demonstrate that various structural disadvantages have jointly led to increasing competition among higher education institutions (HEIs) in many countries, especially Taiwan. Institutional administrators must recognize the need to understand how to improve performance and consistently outperform other institutions.…

  11. Water Literacy in College Freshmen: Could a Cognitive Imagery Strategy Improve Understanding?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ewing, Margaret S.; Mills, Terence J.

    1994-01-01

    Presents a study designed to determine whether levels of water literacy differed between (n=83) college freshman nonscience majors having one versus two years of high school science coursework, visual imagery exercises could improve understanding of the water cycle, and patterns exist in the concept of the water cycle. (Contains 23 references.)…

  12. A Hands-On Exercise Improves Understanding of the Standard Error of the Mean

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ryan, Robert S.

    2006-01-01

    One of the most difficult concepts for statistics students is the standard error of the mean. To improve understanding of this concept, 1 group of students used a hands-on procedure to sample from small populations representing either a true or false null hypothesis. The distribution of 120 sample means (n = 3) from each population had standard…

  13. An Interactive Geometry Program and Its Effect on Elementary Students' Achievement and Understanding of Geometry: A Comparative Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    DeMarinis, Matthew David

    2011-01-01

    While many studies examining the effectiveness of using dynamic geometry software exist, few studies exist at the elementary school level. An extensive data analysis of student performance on New York State Math Assessments revealed that students in the fifth grade may not have had a clear understanding of interior angles sums of polygons, more…

  14. Quality improvement initiatives in neonatal intensive care unit networks: achievements and challenges.

    PubMed

    Shah, Vibhuti; Warre, Ruth; Lee, Shoo K

    2013-01-01

    Neonatal intensive care unit networks that encompass regions, states, and even entire countries offer the perfect platform for implementing continuous quality improvement initiatives to advance the health care provided to vulnerable neonates. Through cycles of identification and implementation of best available evidence, benchmarking, and feedback of outcomes, combined with mutual collaborative learning through a network of providers, the performance of health care systems and neonatal outcomes can be improved. We use examples of successful neonatal networks from across North America to explore continuous quality improvement in the neonatal intensive care unit, including the rationale for the formation of neonatal networks, the role of networks in continuous quality improvement, quality improvement methods and outcomes, and barriers to and facilitators of quality improvement.

  15. The effects of automatic spelling correction software on understanding and comprehension in compensated dyslexia: improved recall following dictation.

    PubMed

    Hiscox, Lucy; Leonavičiūtė, Erika; Humby, Trevor

    2014-08-01

    Dyslexia is associated with difficulties in language-specific skills such as spelling, writing and reading; the difficulty in acquiring literacy skills is not a result of low intelligence or the absence of learning opportunity, but these issues will persist throughout life and could affect long-term education. Writing is a complex process involving many different functions, integrated by the working memory system; people with dyslexia have a working memory deficit, which means that concentration on writing quality may be detrimental to understanding. We confirm impaired working memory in a sample of university students with (compensated) dyslexia, and using a within-subject design with three test conditions, we show that these participants demonstrated better understanding of a piece of text if they had used automatic spelling correction software during a dictation/transcription task. We hypothesize that the use of the autocorrecting software reduced demand on working memory, by allowing word writing to be more automatic, thus enabling better processing and understanding of the content of the transcriptions and improved recall. Long-term and regular use of autocorrecting assistive software should be beneficial for people with and without dyslexia and may improve confidence, written work, academic achievement and self-esteem, which are all affected in dyslexia.

  16. Using Weblog in Cooperative Learning to Improve the Achievement of History Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Leng, Lim Hooi; Leng, Chin Hai; Abedalaziz, Nabeel

    2013-01-01

    This research investigates the use of Weblog in Cooperative Learning to enhance students' learning of History. The main issues of this study were the lack of interest and low achievement scores in History learning. The objectives of this study are to explore the incorporation of Weblog in Cooperative Learning within the teaching and learning…

  17. Improving Low Achievers' Academic Performance at University by Changing the Social Value of Mastery Goals

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dompnier, Benoît; Darnon, Céline; Meier, Emanuele; Brandner, Catherine; Smeding, Annique; Butera, Fabrizio

    2015-01-01

    Recent research has shown that, in a university context, mastery goals are highly valued and that students may endorse these goals either because they believe in their utility (i.e., social utility), in which case mastery goals are positively linked to achievement, or to create a positive image of themselves (i.e., social desirability), in which…

  18. Improving Teaching, Learning, and Assessment by Making Evidence of Achievement Transparent. Occasional Paper #25

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Eubanks, David; Gliem, David

    2015-01-01

    Technology can change higher education by empowering students to make an impact on the world as undergraduates. Done systematically, this would allow institutions to close the credibility gap with an increasingly dubious public. Authentic student achievements that are addressed to a "real world" audience can lead to richly detailed…

  19. A Mobile Gamification Learning System for Improving the Learning Motivation and Achievements

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Su, C-H.; Cheng, C-H.

    2015-01-01

    This paper aims to investigate how a gamified learning approach influences science learning, achievement and motivation, through a context-aware mobile learning environment, and explains the effects on motivation and student learning. A series of gamified learning activities, based on MGLS (Mobile Gamification Learning System), was developed and…

  20. Achievement for All: Improving Psychosocial Outcomes for Students with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Humphrey, Neil; Lendrum, Ann; Barlow, Alexandra; Wigelsworth, Michael; Squires, Garry

    2013-01-01

    Students with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) are at a greatly increased risk of experiencing poor psychosocial outcomes. Developing effective interventions that address the cause of these outcomes has therefore become a major policy priority in recent years. We report on a national evaluation of the Achievement for All (AfA)…

  1. Teacher Professional Development to Improve Science and Literacy Achievement of English Language Learners

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lee, Okhee; Buxton, Cory A.

    2013-01-01

    The school-aged population in the United States is becoming more culturally and linguistically diverse, while achievement gaps across content areas persist. At the same time, more rigorous academic demands are being placed on all students, including English language learners (ELLs). Teachers of ELLs face the double challenge of promoting English…

  2. Concept Mapping Strategy: An Effective Tool for Improving Students' Academic Achievement in Biology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sakiyo, John; Waziri, Kawu

    2015-01-01

    The study investigated the use of concept mapping teaching method on secondary school students' academic achievement in biology. Two hypotheses tested at 0.05 level of significance guided the study. The design of the study was quasi-experimental design with 122 Senior Secondary students selected purposively from two senior secondary schools in…

  3. Is There a Relationship between the Play Attention Program and Improved Student Achievement?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Webber, Jenny Ann

    2011-01-01

    Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and its effects on student academic achievement have been researched for many years. There have been many interventions that have been used in treating ADHD that have been found successful when implemented consistently. Some of the interventions that have been researched in the past are behavior…

  4. Comparing District Achievement to Improve Decision Making in Clark County, Nevada. Vignette

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    American Institutes for Research, 2012

    2012-01-01

    In response to changing demographics, a tightening budget, and drastic achievement gaps (white students outperform Latino students on standardized tests) the Clark County School District in Nevada (the fifth largest district in the country) commissioned, in 2011, an educational and operational efficiency review. The district commissioned the…

  5. Improving Astronomy Achievement and Attitude through Astronomy Summer Project: A Design, Implementation and Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Türk, Cumhur; Kalkan, Hüseyin; Iskeleli', Nazan Ocak; Kiroglu, Kasim

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of this study is to examine the effects of an astronomy summer project implemented in different learning activities on elementary school students, pre-service elementary teachers and in-service teachers' astronomy achievement and their attitudes to astronomy field. This study is the result of a five-day, three-stage, science school,…

  6. Using Formative Reading Assessments and Data Utilization to Improve ELL Spanish Speaking Students' Achievement Test Scores

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hamilton, Maureen Dugan

    2013-01-01

    The demands and expectations placed on all schools in the United States to meet the needs of a growing and diverse population continue to raise the questions, what needs to be done in order for all students to achieve success, and how can this success be measured? This study, researched and reported in the form of a dissertation, was performed on…

  7. Major Field Achievement Test in Business: Guidelines for Improved Outcome Scores--Part I

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McLaughlin, J. Patrick; White, Jason T.

    2007-01-01

    Outcomes measurements have always been an important part of proving to outside constituencies how you "measure up" to other schools with your business programs. A common nationally-normed exam that is used is the Major Field Achievement Test in Business from Educational Testing Services. Our paper discusses some guidelines that we are…

  8. Literacy Coaching to Improve Student Reading Achievement: A Multi-Level Mediation Model

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Matsumura, Lindsay Clare; Garnier, Helen E.; Spybrook, Jessaca

    2013-01-01

    In a longitudinal group-randomized trial, we explore the key role of the quality of classroom text discussions in mediating the effects of Content-Focused Coaching (CFC) on student reading achievement (2983 students, 167 teachers). Schools in the United States serving large numbers of minority and English language learning (ELL) students from…

  9. 10 Strategies for Raising Achievement and Improving High School Completion Rates

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bottoms, Gene

    2004-01-01

    No state can afford to have the percentage of young people who are failing to finish high school remain at the present levels nor can they afford to ease the standards. This document discusses the following 10 strategies that states can implement to raise achievement and increase high school completion rates: (1) Initiate a transition program for…

  10. Improving Attainment through Action Research: An Introduction to Hillingdon's Raising Achievement Project.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Irshad, Khalid; Imrie, Jean

    1997-01-01

    Describes the Raising Achievement Project designed to address the need for more information on the performance of ethnic minorities for whom English is an additional language, and the need for support for children who have passed the initial stages of learning English. It also describes the action research model used to answer questions about…

  11. The Role of School Culture in Improving Student Achievement in POS

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sundell, Kirsten; Castellano, Marisa; Overman, Laura T.; Aliaga, Oscar A.

    2012-01-01

    Over the past five years, the National Research Center for Career and Technical Education (NRCCTE) has sponsored five research studies of Programs of Study (POS)--including three ongoing longitudinal projects--with the goal of informing the field about how and under what conditions POS impact student engagement, achievement, and transition to…

  12. Improving Elementary American Indian Students' Math Achievement with Inquiry-Based Mathematics and Games

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stone, Jamalee; Hamann, Edmund

    2012-01-01

    Project Inquiry-Based Mathematics was a National Science Foundation Math-Science Partnership implemented in a Great Plains city school district with a significant K-12 Native American population. One goal of the project was to reduce the achievement gap between Native American and non-Native students enrolled in district. This gap reduction was to…

  13. Teaching Processes To Improve Both Higher As Well As Lower Mental Process Achievement.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Soled, Suzanne Wegener

    A major purpose of this research was to measure the effect of four different teaching processes on lower and higher mental process achievement. Two separate studies, one in science and one in mathematics, involved approximately 100 seventh grade students in four classrooms in a public junior high school in a middle-income neighborhood, and 85…

  14. The Effect of Using Activities Improving Scientific Literacy on Students' Achievement in Science and Technology Lesson

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gucluer, Efe; Kesercioglu, Teoman

    2012-01-01

    The aim of this study is examining the effect of the using scientific literacy development activities on students' achievement. The study was carried out in a primary school in Buca Izmir for 2010-2011 academic years. System of our body was chosen as a study topic in our search which took 6 weeks. Pre-post test semi experimental control model was…

  15. Turning Despondency into Hope: Charting New Paths to Improve Students' Achievement and Participation in Science Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rodriguez, Alberto J.

    2004-01-01

    This monograph offers a realistic look at current trends in student achievement in science education, the participation of underrepresented populations, and the many factors that serve to sustain them. In addition, it offers new insights and concrete suggestions for change based on the analysis of recent reports and promising field-based studies.…

  16. Effectiveness of a Metacognitive Reading Strategies Program for Improving Low Achieving EFL Readers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ismail, Nasrah Mahmoud; Tawalbeh, Tha'er Issa

    2015-01-01

    As the training of language learners was a main concern of EFL teachers, this study aimed to assess the effectiveness of metacognitive reading strategies instruction (MRSI) on Taif University EFL students who achieved low results in reading. The final sample of this study was (21) female university students. The sample was divided into two groups;…

  17. Using Culturally Competent Responsive Services to Improve Student Achievement and Behavior

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schellenberg, Rita; Grothaus, Tim

    2011-01-01

    This article illustrates standards blending, the integration of core academic and school counseling standards, as a culturally alert responsive services strategy to assist in closing the achievement gap while also enhancing employability skills and culturally salient career competencies. The responsive services intervention described in this…

  18. 3D Game-Based Learning System for Improving Learning Achievement in Software Engineering Curriculum

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Su,Chung-Ho; Cheng, Ching-Hsue

    2013-01-01

    The advancement of game-based learning has encouraged many related studies, such that students could better learn curriculum by 3-dimension virtual reality. To enhance software engineering learning, this paper develops a 3D game-based learning system to assist teaching and assess the students' motivation, satisfaction and learning achievement. A…

  19. Leveraging Quality Improvement to Achieve Student Learning Assessment Success in Higher Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Glenn, Nancy Gentry

    2009-01-01

    Mounting pressure for transformational change in higher education driven by technology, globalization, competition, funding shortages, and increased emphasis on accountability necessitates that universities implement reforms to demonstrate responsiveness to all stakeholders and to provide evidence of student achievement. In the face of the demand…

  20. The Single-Gender Classroom: Improving Middle School Students' Achievement in Math

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Whalen, William V., III.

    2012-01-01

    At Joseph Case Junior High School, a school located in Swansea, Massachusetts for students in grades six through eight; there was a problematic trend in regard to student achievement in mathematics. Upon completion of an analysis of student cohort results in mathematics on the MCAS (Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System), there was an…

  1. 78 FR 69336 - Title I-Improving the Academic Achievement of the Disadvantaged

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-11-19

    ... alternate assessments based on those modified academic achievement standards. This notice established an October 7, 2013, deadline for the submission of written comments. We are reopening the public comment period for seven days. DATES: For the proposed rule published on August 23, 2013 (78 FR 52467),...

  2. Programming in Pairs with Alice to Improve Confidence, Enjoyment, and Achievement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bishop-Clark, Cathy; Courte, Jill; Howard, Elizabeth V.

    2006-01-01

    Students in an introductory computing class participated in a study investigating the impact of using a graphics programming environment (Alice) and pair-programming on confidence, enjoyment and achievement. Sixty-four participants completed a short questionnaire and a content pre-test about computer programming concepts. Students were then…

  3. Closing the Achievement Gap: Principles for Improving the Educational Success of All Students. ERIC Digest.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schwartz, Wendy

    This digest reviews educational policies and practices that have been proven effective in closing the achievement gap, offering a list of resources with detailed information about them. The digest focuses on state and district roles (e.g., developing and implementing educational goals, rigorous standards, and accountability standards and providing…

  4. Improving Secondary School Students' Achievement and Retention in Biology through Video-Based Multimedia Instruction

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gambari, Amosa Isiaka; Yaki, Akawo Angwal; Gana, Eli S.; Ughovwa, Queen Eguono

    2014-01-01

    The study examined the effects of video-based multimedia instruction on secondary school students' achievement and retention in biology. In Nigeria, 120 students (60 boys and 60 girls) were randomly selected from four secondary schools assigned either into one of three experimental groups: Animation + Narration; Animation + On-screen Text;…

  5. Do Charter Schools Improve Student Achievement? Evidence from a National Randomized Study. Working Paper

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Clark, Melissa A.; Gleason, Philip; Tuttle, Christina Clark; Silverberg, Marsha K.

    2011-01-01

    This paper presents findings from the first national randomized study of the impacts of charter schools on student achievement, which included 36 charter middle schools across 15 states. The paper compares students who applied and were admitted to these schools through randomized admissions lotteries with students who applied and were not…

  6. Improving Service Quality: Achieving High Performance in the Public and Private Sectors.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Milakovich, Michael E.

    Quality-improvement principles are a sound means to respond to customer needs. However, when various quality and productivity theories and methods are applied, it is very difficult to consistently deliver quality results, especially in quasi-monopolistic, non-competitive, and regulated environments. This book focuses on quality-improvement methods…

  7. Why Data Matter in ESEA Reauthorization: Recommendations to Ensure Data Are Used to Improve Student Achievement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Data Quality Campaign, 2011

    2011-01-01

    America can no longer afford an education system that fails to use data effectively to guide decisionmaking. The education sector is facing ever-increasing demands to improve student outcomes, reduce burden, increase efficiency, and improve transparency. These demands cannot be met without the strategic and effective use of data. Due to the…

  8. Using Shared Leadership to Achieve School Improvement Goals: A Qualitative Study of One High School's Journey

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Putman, Leigh Ann

    2012-01-01

    This qualitative phenomenological study examined the impact of shared leadership committees on school improvement efforts. The research identified which leadership factors lead to successful shared leadership committees and which supports and structures were needed for the committees to be meaningful in regards to school improvement. Certified…

  9. Maximum surface charge density for triboelectric nanogenerators achieved by ionized-air injection: methodology and theoretical understanding.

    PubMed

    Wang, Sihong; Xie, Yannan; Niu, Simiao; Lin, Long; Liu, Chang; Zhou, Yu Sheng; Wang, Zhong Lin

    2014-10-22

    For the maximization of the surface charge density in triboelectric nanogenerators, a new method of injecting single-polarity ions onto surfaces is introduced for the generation of surface charges. The triboelectric nanogenerator's output power gets greatly enhanced and its maximum surface charge density is systematically studied, which shows a huge room for the improvement of the output of triboelectric nanogenerators by surface modification.

  10. Waste Minimization Improvements Achieved Through Six Sigma Analysis Result In Significant Cost Savings

    SciTech Connect

    Mousseau, Jeffrey, D.; Jansen, John, R.; Janke, David, H.; Plowman, Catherine, M.

    2003-02-26

    Improved waste minimization practices at the Department of Energy's (DOE) Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory (INEEL) are leading to a 15% reduction in the generation of hazardous and radioactive waste. Bechtel, BWXT Idaho, LLC (BBWI), the prime management and operations contractor at the INEEL, applied the Six Sigma improvement process to the INEEL Waste Minimization Program to review existing processes and define opportunities for improvement. Our Six Sigma analysis team: composed of an executive champion, process owner, a black belt and yellow belt, and technical and business team members used this statistical based process approach to analyze work processes and produced ten recommendations for improvement. Recommendations ranged from waste generator financial accountability for newly generated waste to enhanced employee recognition programs for waste minimization efforts. These improvements have now been implemented to reduce waste generation rates and are producing positive results.

  11. Biological approaches to mechanistically understand the healthy life span extension achieved by calorie restriction and modulation of hormones.

    PubMed

    Barzilai, Nir; Bartke, Andrzej

    2009-02-01

    Calorie restriction and reduced somatotropic (growth hormone and insulin-like growth factor-1) signaling have a widespread though not universal ability to extend life. These interventions are considered central tools to understanding the downstream events that lead to the increase in healthy life span. As these approaches have been validated, the animals phenotyped, and the mechanisms proposed, many challenges have emerged. In this article, we give several examples and propose several considerations, opportunities, and approaches that may identify major mechanisms through which these interventions exert their effects, and which may lead to drug therapy to increase "health span."

  12. Tablets in trauma: using mobile computing platforms to improve patient understanding and experience.

    PubMed

    Furness, Nicholas D; Bradford, Oliver J; Paterson, Maurice P

    2013-03-01

    Tablets are becoming commonplace in the health care setting. Patients often request to view their radiographs after sustaining trauma. This can be challenging, especially if patients are immobile. The authors performed a prospective, questionnaire-based study to assess inpatient desire to view radiographs on tablets and whether viewing images affected patient-rated outcomes of understanding and satisfaction. Enabling trauma patients to view their images on a tablet is a worthwhile practice because it improves patient involvement in decision making, satisfaction, perceived understanding, and overall experience.

  13. A Review of Literature to Understand the Complexity of Equity, Ethics and Management for Achieving Public Health Goals in India

    PubMed Central

    Garg, Pankaj; Nagpal, Jitender

    2014-01-01

    In the context of inadequate public spending on health care in India (0.9% of the GDP); government liberalized its policies in the form of subsidized lands and tax incentives, resulting in the mushrooming of private hospitals and clinics in India. Paradoxically, a robust framework was not developed for the regulation of these health care providers, resulting in disorganized health sector, inadequate financing models, and lack of prioritization of services, as well as a sub-optimal achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDG). We systematically reviewed the evidence base regarding regulation of private hospitals, applicability of private-public mix, state of health insurance and effective policy development for India, while seeking lessons on regulation of private health systems, from South African (a developing country) and Australian (a developed country) health care systems. PMID:24701465

  14. Improving Science, Technology and Mathematics Students' Achievement: Imperatives for Teacher Preparation in the Caribbean Colleges and Universities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ogunkola, Babalola J.

    2012-01-01

    The concerns of this article are the unacceptable status of Science, Technology and Mathematics (STM) Education in the Caribbean and how to improve the students' achievement in the subjects involved through the instrumentality of better preparation of teachers by the Colleges and University faculties training teachers in the region. The index for…

  15. 41 CFR 102-193.25 - What type of records management business process improvements should my agency strive to achieve?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... 41 Public Contracts and Property Management 3 2013-07-01 2013-07-01 false What type of records management business process improvements should my agency strive to achieve? 102-193.25 Section 102-193.25 Public Contracts and Property Management Federal Property Management Regulations System...

  16. 41 CFR 102-193.25 - What type of records management business process improvements should my agency strive to achieve?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 41 Public Contracts and Property Management 3 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false What type of records management business process improvements should my agency strive to achieve? 102-193.25 Section 102-193.25 Public Contracts and Property Management Federal Property Management Regulations System...

  17. 41 CFR 102-193.25 - What type of records management business process improvements should my agency strive to achieve?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 41 Public Contracts and Property Management 3 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false What type of records management business process improvements should my agency strive to achieve? 102-193.25 Section 102-193.25 Public Contracts and Property Management Federal Property Management Regulations System...

  18. Experimental Evaluations of Two Strategies to Improve Reading Achievement in Kenya: Enhanced Literacy Instruction and Treatment of Malaria

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jukes, Matthew; Dubeck, Margaret; Brooker, Simon; Wolf, Sharon

    2012-01-01

    There is less quality evidence on how malaria may affect cognitive abilities and educational achievement or on how schools can tackle the problem of malaria among school children. A randomised trial among Sri Lankan children showed that weekly malaria chemoprophylaxis with chloroquine can improve school examination scores. The Health and Literacy…

  19. Improving Academic Achievement of Eleventh Grade Basic U.S. History Students through the Use of Cooperative Learning.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ellett, Douglas R.

    This report describes a project to improve achievement among 24 grade 11 basic U.S. history students in a growing, middle class, suburban community in northern Illinois. Students are assigned to basic classes due to reading test scores. Analysis of probable cause data revealed that students entered the course with poor attitudes toward school,…

  20. Improving Achievement in Secondary Schools: Impact of a Literacy Project on Reading Comprehension and Secondary School Qualifications

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lai, Mei Kuin; Wilson, Aaron; McNaughton, Stuart; Hsiao, Selena

    2014-01-01

    This paper examines whether a literacy intervention involving generic and content area literacy components can improve both achievement on a standardized reading test and the attainment of secondary school qualifications, and whether the intervention can be implemented by teachers in their regular classroom settings. We report on a design-based…

  1. An Investigation of World Language Teachers' Use of Student Performance Data to Inform Teaching and to Help Improve Student Achievement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Koffi, Bruno N.

    2013-01-01

    This qualitative study investigated the types of content-based student performance data World Language teachers used to improve instruction and student academic achievement, the purposes for which they used data, the issues they encountered, and the suggestions they made for more effective use of data. The Standards for Foreign Language Learning…

  2. The Effectiveness of Computerized Instructional Packages on Concept Acquisition and Improving Academic Achievement among Female Deaf Students in KSA

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bagabas, Hanan Ali

    2016-01-01

    The current study aimed to investigate the effectiveness of computerized instructional packages on concept acquisition and improving academic achievement among deaf students in Saudi Arabia. The sample consisted of (16) third-grade female deaf students in prep stage for the first semester of the academic year 2013/2014, randomly selected from…

  3. Improving Learning Achievements, Motivations and Problem-Solving Skills through a Peer Assessment-Based Game Development Approach

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hwang, Gwo-Jen; Hung, Chun-Ming; Chen, Nian-Shing

    2014-01-01

    In this study, a peer assessment-based game development approach is proposed for improving students' learning achievements, motivations and problem-solving skills. An experiment has been conducted to evaluate the effectiveness of the proposed approach in a science course at an elementary school. A total of 167 sixth graders participated in…

  4. Dramatic improvement in genome assembly achieved using doubled-haploid genomes

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Hong; Tan, Engkong; Suzuki, Yutaka; Hirose, Yusuke; Kinoshita, Shigeharu; Okano, Hideyuki; Kudoh, Jun; Shimizu, Atsushi; Saito, Kazuyoshi; Watabe, Shugo; Asakawa, Shuichi

    2014-01-01

    Improvement in de novo assembly of large genomes is still to be desired. Here, we improved draft genome sequence quality by employing doubled-haploid individuals. We sequenced wildtype and doubled-haploid Takifugu rubripes genomes, under the same conditions, using the Illumina platform and assembled contigs with SOAPdenovo2. We observed 5.4-fold and 2.6-fold improvement in the sizes of the N50 contig and scaffold of doubled-haploid individuals, respectively, compared to the wildtype, indicating that the use of a doubled-haploid genome aids in accurate genome analysis. PMID:25345569

  5. Using Animation to Improve the Students' Academic Achievement on Bipolar Junction Transistor

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zoabi, W.; Sabag, N.; Gero, A.

    2012-01-01

    Teaching abstract subjects to students studying towards a degree in electronics practical engineering (a degree between a technician and an engineer) requires didactic tools that enable understanding of issues without using advanced mathematics and physics. One basic issue is the BJT (Bipolar Junction Transistor) that requires preliminary…

  6. Achieving continuous improvement in reductions in foodborne listeriosis--a risk-based approach.

    PubMed

    2005-09-01

    Listeria monocytogenes is a foodborne pathogen that can cause listeriosis, a severe disease that can lead to septicemia, meningitis, and spontaneous abortion. Ongoing efforts are needed to further reduce the incidence of listeriosis, due to its high mortality rate. The focus of this report is the use of a risk-based approach to identify strategies that will have the greatest impact on reducing foodborne listeriosis. A continuum of risk for listeriosis is observed in the human population, ranging from exquisitely sensitive groups, who are highly immunocompromised and at very high risk of listeriosis, through the normal healthy population younger than 65 years of age, who appear to have a minimal risk for listeriosis. In addition, unique subpopulations may exist; for example, pregnant Latina women appear to have a higher risk of listeriosis than pregnant women of other ethnic groups, most likely due to consumption of contaminated soft cheeses such as queso fresco and queso blanco. The International Life Sciences Institute Risk Science Institute Expert Panel concluded that certain foods pose a high risk for causing listeriosis. High-risk foods have all of the following properties: (1) have the potential for contamination with L. monocytogenes; (2) support the growth of L. monocytogenes to high numbers; (3) are ready to eat; (4) require refrigeration; and (5) are stored for an extended period of time. Control strategies are needed in the food chain from preharvest through consumption to minimize the likelihood that food will become contaminated by L. monocytogenes and to prevent the growth of the organism to high numbers. The Expert Panel identified three main strategies for ensuring continuous improvement in reducing foodborne listeriosis: (1) preventing contamination of foods with L. monocytogenes; (2) preventing growth of L. monocytogenes to high numbers in foods; and (3) science-based education messages targeted to susceptible populations and their caregivers. Of

  7. Recent advances in improvement of forecast skill and understanding climate processes using AIRS Version-5 products

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Susskind, Joel; Molnar, Gyula; Iredell, Lena; Rosenberg, Robert

    2012-10-01

    The NASA Goddard Earth Sciences (GES) Data and Information Services Center (DISC) generates products derived from AIRS/AMSU-A observations, starting from September 2002 when the AIRS instrument became stable, using the AIRS Science Team Version-5 retrieval algorithm. This paper shows results of some of our research using Version-5 products from the points of view of improving forecast skill as well as aiding in the understanding of climate processes.

  8. Multimodal treatment of unresectable hepatocellular carcinoma to achieve complete response results in improved survival

    PubMed Central

    Newell, Pippa H; Wu, YingXing; Hoen, Helena; Uppal, Richa; Thiesing, John Tyler; Sasadeusz, Kevin; Cassera, Maria A; Wolf, Ronald F; Hansen, Paul; Hammill, Chet W

    2015-01-01

    Introduction With technological advances, questions arise regarding how to best fit newer treatment modalities, such as transarterial therapies, into the treatment algorithm for patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Methods Between 2005 and 2011, 128 patients initially treated with transarterial radioembolization or chemoembolization using drug-eluting beads were identified. The response was graded retrospectively. Toxicity was measured 1, 3, and 6 months after the first and last treatments. Results Sixty-five patients (53%) were advanced stage. Twenty patients (16%) had an initial complete response, but with additional treatments, this was increased to 46 (36%). Patients with a complete response as their best response to treatment had a median survival [95% confidence interval (CI)] of 5.77 (2.58, upper limit not yet reached) years, significantly longer than those whose best response was a partial response, 1.22 (0.84, 2.06) years and those with stable disease as their best response, 0.34 (0.29, 0.67) years. Repeated treatments did not increase toxicity. Discussion This retrospective review of patients treated for intermediate and advanced stage HCC revealed a significant survival advantage in patients who achieved a complete response. These data support use of a multi-modality approach to intermediate and advanced stage HCC, combining liver-directed treatments as necessary to achieve a complete response. PMID:25580988

  9. Organizing Schools to Improve Student Achievement: Start Times, Grade Configurations, and Teacher Assignments

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jacob, Brian A.; Rockoff, Jonah E.

    2012-01-01

    Proposals for school reform often focus on large and sometimes controversial systemic changes, such as charter schools, accountability standards, and changes to the way teachers are hired, fired, and compensated. Although these reforms may offer great opportunity to improve student outcomes, they may also be costly, face substantial implementation…

  10. School Stability: Improving Academic Achievement for NJ Foster Children. Policy Brief

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bernard-Rance, Kourtney; Parello, Nancy

    2014-01-01

    Children in New Jersey's foster care system are more likely to remain in their home school when they enter foster care, thanks to a law passed in 2010, giving these fragile children improved educational stability. The law allows children to remain in their "school of origin" when they are placed in foster care, even if the foster home is…

  11. Improving Student Achievement in Introductory Computer Science Courses Using Peer-Led Team Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dennis, Sonya Maria

    2013-01-01

    There has been a steady decline of majors in the disciplines of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics ("STEM majors"). In an effort to improve recruitment and retention in "STEM" majors, an active-learning methodology--"peer-led team learning" ("PLTL")--was implemented by the participating…

  12. Teachers Unions and Management Partnerships: How Working Together Improves Student Achievement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rubinstein, Saul A.; McCarthy, John E.

    2014-01-01

    For more than a decade, the debate over public school reform has created friction between teachers unions, administrators, school boards, parents, policymakers, and other stakeholders in public education and has fueled disagreements over how to improve the quality of teaching and learning for children. While many factors make consensus elusive…

  13. Creating Birds of Similar Feathers: Leveraging Similarity to Improve Teacher-Student Relationships and Academic Achievement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gehlbach, Hunter; Brinkworth, Maureen E.; King, Aaron M.; Hsu, Laura M.; McIntyre, Joseph; Rogers, Todd

    2016-01-01

    When people perceive themselves as similar to others, greater liking and closer relationships typically result. In the first randomized field experiment that leverages actual similarities to improve real-world relationships, we examined the affiliations between 315 9th grade students and their 25 teachers. Students in the treatment condition…

  14. Combined Fluency and Cognitive Strategies Instruction Improves Mathematics Achievement in Early Elementary School

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Carr, Martha; Taasoobshirazi, Gita; Stroud, Rena; Royer, James M.

    2011-01-01

    One hundred and seventy-eight second grade students from two states (Georgia and Massachusetts) participated in an experiment in which they were randomly assigned to either (1) a computer program designed to increase fluency in addition and subtraction, (2) a program designed to improve cognitive strategy use for addition and subtraction, (3) a…

  15. Achieving World-Class Schools: Mastering School Improvement Using a Genetic Model.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kimmelman, Paul L.; Kroeze, David J.

    In providing its program for education reform, this book uses, as an analogy, the genetic model taken from the Human Genome project. In the first part, "Theoretical Underpinnings," the book explains why a genetic model can be used to improve school systems; describes the critical components of a world-class school system; and details the…

  16. Increasing Student Achievement and Improving Self-Esteem through a Community Building Intervention

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lupo, Concetta M.

    2012-01-01

    This study focused on improving students' self-esteem through community building at an elementary school in a low socioeconomic community where over 55% of the students live below the poverty line. Orefield and Yun state in their 1999 article, "Resegregation of America's schools," "school level poverty is related to many…

  17. Effects of Simulated Interventions to Improve School Entry Academic Skills on Socioeconomic Inequalities in Educational Achievement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chittleborough, Catherine R.; Mittinty, Murthy N.; Lawlor, Debbie A.; Lynch, John W.

    2014-01-01

    Randomized controlled trial evidence shows that interventions before age 5 can improve skills necessary for educational success; the effect of these interventions on socioeconomic inequalities is unknown. Using trial effect estimates, and marginal structural models with data from the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (n = 11,764,…

  18. What We Know about Student Achievement and School Improvement in Kansas. Focus On...

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tallman, Mark

    2012-01-01

    Educational improvement can be measured over time and against benchmarks in four key areas: (1) mastery of basic reading and math skills; (2) high school completion; (3) preparation for postsecondary education; and (4) adult educational attainment. The first three reflect how the school system prepares students for postsecondary education. The…

  19. Evaluating and Improving Student Achievement in Business Programs: The Effective Use of Standardized Assessment Tests

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Black, H. Tyrone; Duhon, David L.

    2003-01-01

    Having made "continuous improvement" the theme of its accreditation process a decade ago, the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) is poised to make "assurance of learning" the current focus of the faculty/student exchange. In this article, the authors discuss how to use standardized assessment tests…

  20. Effective Strategies That Urban Superintendents Use That Improve the Academic Achievement for African-American Males

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shackelford, Cardenas

    2013-01-01

    The roles of urban superintendents are crucial to improving the educational outlook for the neediest students, specifically the African-American males. The roles and responsibilities of the urban school superintendent today are more numerous, complex, and demanding than in the past. The expectations of today's urban superintendents are to be…

  1. Evaluation and capacity building to improve precollege science and mathematics achievement in the US: 10 CFR, Part 605

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1992-01-01

    The National Center for Improving Science Education has undertaken activities to achieve evaluation goals for DOE's Precollege programs: develop means to determine program quality; develop means for determining the contribution of DOE precollege programs to both teacher enhancement and student achievement; provide evaluation designs and instruments and reports of program quality and impact; and strengthen both DOE's and the Labs' capacity to do both short- and long-term planning as well as deliver effective programs and evaluation. Appendices include evaluation/technical assistance report, profiling teacher research participation and teacher development programs, teacher surveys, impact assessment design, and teacher research participation programs anecdotes for 8 labs.

  2. Improving University Ranking to Achieve University Competitiveness by Management Information System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dachyar, M.; Dewi, F.

    2015-05-01

    One way to increase university competitiveness is through information system management. A literature review was done to find information system factors that affect university performance in Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) University Ranking: Asia evaluation. Information system factors were then eliminated using Delphi method through consensus of 7 experts. Result from Delphi method was used as measured variables in PLS-SEM. Estimation with PLS-SEM method through 72 respondents shows that the latent variable academic reputation and citation per paper have significant correlation to university competitiveness. In University of Indonesia (UI) the priority to increase university competitiveness as follow: (i) network building in international conference, (ii) availability of research data to public, (iii) international conference information, (iv) information on achievements and accreditations of each major, (v) ease of employment for alumni.

  3. Knowledge is Power. A quality improvement project to increase patient understanding of their hospital stay

    PubMed Central

    Nicholson Thomas, Eleanor; Edwards, Lloyd; McArdle, Paul

    2017-01-01

    Patients frequently leave hospital uninformed about the details of their hospital stay with studies showing that only 59.9% of patients are able to accurately state their diagnosis and ongoing management after discharge. 1 2 This places patients at a higher risk of complications. Educating patients by providing them with accurate and understandable information enables them to take greater control, potentially reducing readmission rates, and unplanned visits to secondary services whilst providing safer care and improving patient satisfaction. 3 4 We wished to investigate whether through a simple intervention, we could improve the understanding and retention of key pieces of clinical information in those patients recently admitted to hospital. A leaflet was designed to trigger patients to ask questions about key aspects of their stay. This was then given to inpatients who were interviewed two weeks later using telephone follow up to assess their understanding of their hospital admission. Patients were asked about their diagnosis, new medications, likely complications, follow up arrangements and recommended points of contact in case of difficulty. Sequential modifications were made using PDSA cycles to maximise the impact and benefit of the process. Baseline data revealed that only 77% of patients could describe their diagnosis and only 27% of patients knew details about their new medications. After the leaflet intervention these figures improved to 100% and 71% respectively. Too often patients are unaware about what happens to them whilst in hospital and are discharged unsafely and dissatisfied as a result. A simple intervention such as a leaflet prompting patients to ask questions and take responsibility for their health can make a difference in potentially increasing patient understanding and thereby reducing risk. PMID:28321297

  4. Identification of Energy Efficiency Opportunities through Building Data Analysis and Achieving Energy Savings through Improved Controls

    SciTech Connect

    Katipamula, Srinivas; Taasevigen, Danny J.; Koran, Bill

    2014-09-04

    This chapter will highlight analysis techniques to identify energy efficiency opportunities to improve operations and controls. A free tool, Energy Charting and Metrics (ECAM), will be used to assist in the analysis of whole-building, sub-metered, and/or data from the building automation system (BAS). Appendix A describes the features of ECAM in more depth, and also provide instructions for downloading ECAM and all resources pertaining to using ECAM.

  5. Longer term improvement in neurocognitive functioning and affective distress among methamphetamine users who achieve stable abstinence.

    PubMed

    Iudicello, Jennifer E; Woods, Steven P; Vigil, Ofilio; Scott, J Cobb; Cherner, Mariana; Heaton, Robert K; Atkinson, J Hampton; Grant, Igor

    2010-08-01

    Chronic use of methamphetamine (MA) is associated with neuropsychological dysfunction and affective distress. Some normalization of function has been reported after abstinence, but little in the way of data is available on the possible added benefits of long-term sobriety. To address this, we performed detailed neuropsychological and affective evaluations in 83 MA-dependent individuals at a baseline visit and following an average one-year interval period. Among the 83 MA-dependent participants, 25 remained abstinent, and 58 used MA at least once during the interval period. A total of 38 non-MA-addicted, demographically matched healthy comparison (i.e., HC) participants were also examined. At baseline, both MA-dependent participants who were able to maintain abstinence and those who were not performed significantly worse than the healthy comparison subjects on global neuropsychological functioning and were significantly more distressed. At the one-year follow-up, both the long-term abstainers and healthy comparison groups showed comparable global neuropsychological performance and affective distress levels, whereas the MA-dependent group who continued to use MA were worse than the comparison participants in terms of global neuropsychological functioning and affective distress. An interaction was observed between neuropsychological impairment at baseline, MA abstinence, and cognitive improvement, with abstinent MA-dependent participants who were neuropsychologically impaired at baseline demonstrating significantly and disproportionately greater improvement in processing speed and slightly greater improvement in motor abilities than the other participants. These results suggest partial recovery of neuropsychological functioning and improvement in affective distress upon sustained abstinence from MA that may extend beyond a year or more.

  6. Live births achieved via IVF are increased by improvements in air quality and laboratory environment.

    PubMed

    Heitmann, Ryan J; Hill, Micah J; James, Aidita N; Schimmel, Tim; Segars, James H; Csokmay, John M; Cohen, Jacques; Payson, Mark D

    2015-09-01

    Infertility is a common disease, which causes many couples to seek treatment with assisted reproduction techniques. Many factors contribute to successful assisted reproduction technique outcomes. One important factor is laboratory environment and air quality. Our facility had the unique opportunity to compare consecutively used, but separate assisted reproduction technique laboratories, as a result of a required move. Environmental conditions were improved by strategic engineering designs. All other aspects of the IVF laboratory, including equipment, physicians, embryologists, nursing staff and protocols, were kept constant between facilities. Air quality testing showed improved air quality at the new IVF site. Embryo implantation (32.4% versus 24.3%; P < 0.01) and live birth (39.3% versus 31.8%, P < 0.05) were significantly increased in the new facility compared with the old facility. More patients met clinical criteria and underwent mandatory single embryo transfer on day 5 leading to both a reduction in multiple gestation pregnancies and increased numbers of vitrified embryos per patient with supernumerary embryos available. Improvements in IVF laboratory conditions and air quality had profound positive effects on laboratory measures and patient outcomes. This study further strengthens the importance of the laboratory environment and air quality in the success of an IVF programme.

  7. Live births achieved via IVF are increased by improvements in air quality and laboratory environment

    PubMed Central

    Heitmann, Ryan J; Hill, Micah J; James, Aidita N; Schimmel, Tim; Segars, James H; Csokmay, John M; Cohen, Jacques; Payson, Mark D

    2016-01-01

    Infertility is a common disease, which causes many couples to seek treatment with assisted reproduction techniques. Many factors contribute to successful assisted reproduction technique outcomes. One important factor is laboratory environment and air quality. Our facility had the unique opportunity to compare consecutively used, but separate assisted reproduction technique laboratories, as a result of a required move. Environmental conditions were improved by strategic engineering designs. All other aspects of the IVF laboratory, including equipment, physicians, embryologists, nursing staff and protocols, were kept constant between facilities. Air quality testing showed improved air quality at the new IVF site. Embryo implantation (32.4% versus 24.3%; P < 0.01) and live birth (39.3% versus 31.8%, P < 0.05) were significantly increased in the new facility compared with the old facility. More patients met clinical criteria and underwent mandatory single embryo transfer on day 5 leading to both a reduction in multiple gestation pregnancies and increased numbers of vitrified embryos per patient with supernumerary embryos available. Improvements in IVF laboratory conditions and air quality had profound positive effects on laboratory measures and patient outcomes. This study further strengthens the importance of the laboratory environment and air quality in the success of an IVF programme. PMID:26194882

  8. Understanding the factors that influence high science achievers' academic choices and intent to pursue or opt out of the hard sciences

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Quihuis, Gisell

    Drawing on Eccles and her colleagues' Expectancy-Value model of academic behavior and choice, this dissertation study set out to serve three purposes: (1) to understand how high achieving high school students who aspire to science college degrees compare, in terms of motivational beliefs and social experiences, with other high achievers who do not aspire to science college degrees; (2) to understand why some high school students who excel in the hard sciences are unsure about pursuing a science degree in college; and (3) to examine whether gender differences in motivational beliefs and social experiences found in previous research on math (see Eccles 1984) exist for science among high achieving high school students. Survey and interview data showed that gender differences previously found in Eccles' research on math exist for science among a select group of high achieving high school students. Yet, these gender differences did not explain students' aspirations for science. Motivation, classroom perceptions, science engagement, as well as other science-related experiences at home and school, including parent and teacher influences, were also important factors associated with students' aspirations for science. Results and implications for this study are encouraging because they suggest that both parents and educators can help more high achievers become interested in science. Parents can expose their children, male and female alike, to science at home early on in their childhood and teachers can help students sustain and further develop an interest in science at school. In this manner, both parents and teachers can work together as a team to encourage more high achievers to aspire to science degrees in their future. Lastly, it is important to note that this study found Eccles' model of motivation and choice helpful in understanding not only gender differences in math and the hard sciences, but also aspiration differences that cut across gender among students

  9. Improved Thermal Conductivity in Carbon Nanotubes-Reinforced Syntactic Foam Achieved by a New Dispersing Technique

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhat, P.; Zegeye, E.; Ghamsari, A. K.; Woldesenbet, E.

    2015-12-01

    Syntactic foams are composite materials in which the matrix phase is reinforced with hollow micro-particles. Traditionally, syntactic foams are used for many high strength applications and as insulating materials. However, for applications demanding better heat dissipation, such as thermal management of electronic packaging, conductive fillers need to be added to syntactic foam. Carbon nanotubes (CNTs), although extremely conductive, have issues of agglomeration in the matrix. In this research, CNT-reinforced syntactic foam was developed based on our approach through which CNTs were dispersed throughout the matrix by growing them on the surface of glass microballoons. The thermal conductivity of nanotube-grown syntactic foam was tested with a Flashline® thermal analyzer. For comparison purposes, plain and nanotube-mixed syntactic foams were also fabricated and tested. Nanotube-grown microballoons improved the thermal conductivity of syntactic foam by 86% and 92% (at 50°C) compared to plain and nanotube-mixed syntactic foams, respectively. The improved thermal conductivity as well as the microstructural analysis proved the effectiveness of this approach for dispersing the carbon nanotubes in syntactic foams.

  10. Can developing countries achieve adequate improvements in child health outcomes without engaging the private sector?

    PubMed Central

    Bustreo, Flavia; Harding, April; Axelsson, Henrik

    2003-01-01

    The private sector exerts a significant and critical influence on child health outcomes in developing countries, including the health of poor children. This article reviews the available evidence on private sector utilization and quality of care. It provides a framework for analysing the private sector's influence on child health outcomes. This influence goes beyond service provision by private providers and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs). Pharmacies, drug sellers, private suppliers, and food producers also have an impact on the health of children. Many governments are experimenting with strategies to engage the private sector to improve child health. The article analyses some of the most promising strategies, and suggests that a number of constraints make it hard for policy-makers to emulate these approaches. Few experiences are clearly described, monitored, and evaluated. The article suggests that improving the impact of child health programmes in developing countries requires a more systematic analysis of how to engage the private sector most effectively. The starting point should include the evaluation of the presence and potential of the private sector, including actors such as professional associations, producer organizations, community groups, and patients' organizations. PMID:14997241

  11. Public goods and private interests: The role of voluntary green power demand in achieving environmental improvements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wiser, Ryan Hayes

    This dissertation explores the role of consumer purchasing behavior in providing public, environmental goods. It does so by empirically evaluating one market---voluntary demand for renewable energy. The dissertation addresses the following five research questions: (1) What does early experience with green power marketing tell us about the prospects for this market to deliver environmental benefits? (2) What product design and marketing approaches might be used to increase voluntary demand? (3) What motivates non-residential customers to voluntarily purchase green power? (4) What role might public policy play in the creation of the green power market? (5) What preferences do individuals hold on the most appropriate forms of support for renewable energy? By helping to answer these questions, this dissertation seeks to better understand the gap between widespread positive attitudes for the environment and an often-anemic response to green product offerings. It contributes to not only the public goods and environmental marketing literatures, but also to contingent valuation methodology and to an emerging literature on the motivations of firms to contribute to environmental causes. The analysis performed is diverse, and includes: a literature review, a mail survey of green power marketers, a mail survey of non-residential green power customers, and contingent valuation and opinion surveys of U.S. residents. Detailed statistical analysis is performed on the data collected from the residential and non-residential surveys. The analysis reveals that customer participation in green power programs to date has been weak. The possibility that the traditional economic concept of "free riding" may explain this low response is raised, and the dissertation identifies a number of marketing approaches that might be used to partially combat this problem. Analysis of survey data shows that non-residential green power purchases have been motivated principally by altruistic concerns

  12. Understanding latent tuberculosis: the key to improved diagnostic and novel treatment strategies

    PubMed Central

    Esmail, Hanif; Barry, Clifton E; Wilkinson, Robert J

    2012-01-01

    Treatment of latent tuberculosis (LTBI) is a vital component of tuberculosis elimination but is not efficiently implemented with available diagnostics and therapeutics. The tuberculin skin test and interferon gamma release assays can inform that infection has occurred but do not prove that it persists. Treatment of LTBI with isoniazid targets actively replicating bacilli but not non-replicating populations, prolonging treatment duration. Developing more predictive diagnostic tests and treatments of shorter duration requires a greater understanding of the biology of latent tuberculosis, from both host and bacillary perspectives. In this article we discuss the basis of current diagnosis and treatment of LTBI and review recent developments in understanding the biology of latency that may enable future improved diagnostic and treatment strategies. PMID:22198298

  13. Understanding the advances in biology of orthodontic tooth movement for improved ortho-perio interdisciplinary approach

    PubMed Central

    Patil, Anand K.; Shetty, Adarsh S.; Setty, Swati; Thakur, Srinath

    2013-01-01

    This article provides an insight on detailed current advances in molecular understandings of periodontal ligament cells and the influence of orthodontic force on them in the light of recent advances in molecular and genetic sciences. It sequentially unfolds the cellular events beginning from the mechanical force initiated events of cellular responses to bone remodeling. It also highlights the risks and limitations of orthodontic treatment in certain periodontal conditions, the important areas of team work, orthodontic expectations from periodontal treatment and the possibility of much more future combined research to improve the best possible periodontal health and esthetic outcome of the patient. PMID:24049330

  14. Understanding the Dreyfus model of skill acquisition to improve ultrasound training for obstetrics and gynaecology trainees.

    PubMed

    Field, Alexander

    2014-05-01

    There have been significant problems in ultrasound training since the introduction of the new postgraduate curriculum for obstetrics and gynaecology. It is therefore important to understand how the skill of ultrasound is acquired in order to be able to improve the training program. Here, the potential application of the Dreyfus model of skill acquisition has been analysed to map the progression from novice to master and the progressions between each stage analysed. Although the Dreyfus model is not a perfect match for ultrasound scanning, it provides us with a theoretical framework on which to underpin educational practice in this field.

  15. Exemplary Care and Learning Sites: A Model for Achieving Continual Improvement in Care and Learning in the Clinical Setting

    PubMed Central

    Ogrinc, Greg; Hoffman, Kimberly G.; Stevenson, Katherine M.; Shalaby, Marc; Beard, Albertine S.; Thörne, Karin E.; Coleman, Mary T.; Baum, Karyn D.

    2016-01-01

    Problem Current models of health care quality improvement do not explicitly describe the role of health professions education. The authors propose the Exemplary Care and Learning Site (ECLS) model as an approach to achieving continual improvement in care and learning in the clinical setting. Approach From 2008–2012, an iterative, interactive process was used to develop the ECLS model and its core elements—patients and families informing process changes; trainees engaging both in care and the improvement of care; leaders knowing, valuing, and practicing improvement; data transforming into useful information; and health professionals competently engaging both in care improvement and teaching about care improvement. In 2012–2013, a three-part feasibility test of the model, including a site self-assessment, an independent review of each site’s ratings, and implementation case stories, was conducted at six clinical teaching sites (in the United States and Sweden). Outcomes Site leaders reported the ECLS model provided a systematic approach toward improving patient (and population) outcomes, system performance, and professional development. Most sites found it challenging to incorporate the patients and families element. The trainee element was strong at four sites. The leadership and data elements were self-assessed as the most fully developed. The health professionals element exhibited the greatest variability across sites. Next Steps The next test of the model should be prospective, linked to clinical and educa tional outcomes, to evaluate whether it helps care delivery teams, educators, and patients and families take action to achieve better patient (and population) outcomes, system performance, and professional development. PMID:26760058

  16. The CONVEX project - Using Observational Evidence and Process Understanding to Improve Predictions of Extreme Rainfall Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fowler, Hayley; Kendon, Elizabeth; Blenkinsop, Stephen; Chan, Steven; Ferro, Christopher; Roberts, Nigel; Stephenson, David; Jones, Richard; Sessford, Pat

    2013-04-01

    During the last decade, widespread major flood events in the UK and across the rest of Europe have focussed attention on perceived increases in rainfall intensities. Whilst Regional Climate Models (RCMs) are able to simulate the magnitude and spatial pattern of observed daily extreme rainfall events more reliably than Global Circulation Models (GCMs), they still underestimate extreme rainfall in relation to observations. Particularly during the summer a large proportion of the precipitation comes from convective storms that are typically too small to be explicitly represented by climate models. Instead, convection parameterisation schemes are necessary to represent the larger-scale effect of unresolved convective cells. Given the deficiencies in the simulation of extreme rainfall by climate models, even in the current generation of high-resolution RCMs, the CONVEX project (CONVective EXtremes) argues that an integrated approach is needed that brings together observations, basic understanding and models. This should go hand in hand with a change from a focus on traditional validation exercises (comparing modelled and observed extremes) to an understanding and quantification of the causes of model deficiencies in the simulation of extreme rainfall processes on different spatial and temporal scales. It is particularly true for localised intense summer convection. CONVEX therefore aims to contribute to the goals of enabling society to respond to global climate change and predicting the regional and local impacts of environmental change. In addition to an improved understanding of the spatial-temporal characteristics of extreme rainfall processes (principally in the UK) the project is also assessing the influence of model parameterisations and resolution on the simulation of extreme rainfall events and processes. This includes the running of new RCM simulations undertaken by the UK Meteorological Office at 50km and 12km resolutions (parameterised convection) and

  17. Mismatched partners that achieve postpairing behavioral similarity improve their reproductive success

    PubMed Central

    Laubu, Chloé; Dechaume-Moncharmont, François-Xavier; Motreuil, Sébastien; Schweitzer, Cécile

    2016-01-01

    Behavioral similarity between partners is likely to promote within-pair compatibility and to result in better reproductive success. Therefore, individuals are expected to choose a partner that is alike in behavioral type. However, mate searching is very costly and does not guarantee finding a matching partner. If mismatched individuals pair, they may benefit from increasing their similarity after pairing. We show in a monogamous fish species—the convict cichlid—that the behavioral similarity between mismatched partners can increase after pairing. This increase resulted from asymmetrical adjustment because only the reactive individual became more alike its proactive partner, whereas the latter did not change its behavior. The mismatched pairs that increased their similarity not only improved their reproductive success but also raised it up to the level of matched pairs. While most studies assume that assortative mating results from mate choice, our study suggests that postpairing adjustment could be an alternative explanation for the high behavioral similarity between partners observed in the field. It also explains why interindividual behavioral differences can be maintained within a given population. PMID:26973869

  18. Incomplete reporting of enhanced recovery elements and its impact on achieving quality improvement

    PubMed Central

    Day, Ryan W.; Fielder, Sharon; Calhoun, John; Kehlet, Henrik

    2015-01-01

    BACKGROUND Enhanced recovery (ER) protocols are widely used in surgical practice. As protocols are multidisciplinary with multiple components, it is difficult to compare and contrast reports. The present study therefore examined compliance and transferability to clinical practice among ER publications related to colorectal surgery. METHODS PubMed, EMBASE and Cochrane databases were searched for current colorectal ER manuscripts. Each publication was assessed for the number of ER elements, whether the element was sufficiently explained so that it could be transferred to clinical practice, and the compliance with the ER element. RESULTS Some 50 publications met the reporting criteria for inclusion. There were 22 ERAS elements described altogether. The median number of elements included in each publication was 9 with median number of included patients of 130. The most frequent elements included in ER pathways were early postoperative diet advancement in 49 (98%) and early mobilisation in 47 (94%). Early diet advancement was sufficiently explained in 43 (86%) publications but just 22 (45%) reported compliance. The explanation for early mobilisation was satisfactory in 41 (82%) publications but only 14 (30%) reported compliance. Other ERAS elements had similar rates of explanation and compliance. The most frequently analysed outcome measures were morbidity 49 (98%), length of stay 47 (94%), and mortality in 45 (90%) of publications. CONCLUSIONS The current standard of reporting is frequently incomplete. In order to transfer knowledge and facilitate implementation of pathways that demonstrate improvements in perioperative care and recovery, a consistent structured reporting platform is needed. PMID:26364714

  19. How PEPFAR's public-private partnerships achieved ambitious goals, from improving labs to strengthening supply chains.

    PubMed

    Sturchio, Jeffrey L; Cohen, Gary M

    2012-07-01

    The President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), established in 2003, is widely recognized as one of the most ambitious and successful bilateral programs ever implemented to address a single disease. Part of the program's success is attributable to the participation of the private sector, working in partnership with the US and local governments and implementing organizations to maximize the reach and effectiveness of every dollar spent. We examined key public-private partnerships that grew out of PEPFAR to identify features that have made them effective. For example, PEPFAR's Supply Chain Management System took advantage of private industry's best practices in logistics, and a partnership with the medical technology company BD (Becton, Dickinson and Company) improved laboratory systems throughout sub-Saharan Africa. We found that setting ambitious goals, enlisting both global and local partners, cultivating a culture of collaboration, careful planning, continuous monitoring and evaluation, and measuring outcomes systematically led to the most effective programs. The Office of the US Global AIDS Coordinator and PEPFAR should continue to strengthen their capacity for private-sector partnerships, learning from a decade of experience and identifying new ways to make smart investments that will make the most efficient use of taxpayer resources, expand proven interventions more rapidly, and help ensure the sustainability of key programs.

  20. Jatropha curcas, a biofuel crop: functional genomics for understanding metabolic pathways and genetic improvement.

    PubMed

    Maghuly, Fatemeh; Laimer, Margit

    2013-10-01

    Jatropha curcas is currently attracting much attention as an oilseed crop for biofuel, as Jatropha can grow under climate and soil conditions that are unsuitable for food production. However, little is known about Jatropha, and there are a number of challenges to be overcome. In fact, Jatropha has not really been domesticated; most of the Jatropha accessions are toxic, which renders the seedcake unsuitable for use as animal feed. The seeds of Jatropha contain high levels of polyunsaturated fatty acids, which negatively impact the biofuel quality. Fruiting of Jatropha is fairly continuous, thus increasing costs of harvesting. Therefore, before starting any improvement program using conventional or molecular breeding techniques, understanding gene function and the genome scale of Jatropha are prerequisites. This review presents currently available and relevant information on the latest technologies (genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics and metabolomics) to decipher important metabolic pathways within Jatropha, such as oil and toxin synthesis. Further, it discusses future directions for biotechnological approaches in Jatropha breeding and improvement.

  1. Annotated Bibliography: Understanding Ambulatory Care Practices in the Context of Patient Safety and Quality Improvement.

    PubMed

    Montano, Maria F; Mehdi, Harshal; Nash, David B

    2016-11-01

    The ambulatory care setting is an increasingly important component of the patient safety conversation. Inpatient safety is the primary focus of the vast majority of safety research and interventions, but the ambulatory setting is actually where most medical care is administered. Recent attention has shifted toward examining ambulatory care in order to implement better health care quality and safety practices. This annotated bibliography was created to analyze and augment the current literature on ambulatory care practices with regard to patient safety and quality improvement. By providing a thorough examination of current practices, potential improvement strategies in ambulatory care health care settings can be suggested. A better understanding of the myriad factors that influence delivery of patient care will catalyze future health care system development and implementation in the ambulatory setting.

  2. Improvements in Students' Understanding from Increased Implementation of Active Learning Strategies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hayes-Gehrke, Melissa N.; Prather, E. E.; Rudolph, A. L.; Collaboration of Astronomy Teaching Scholars CATS

    2011-01-01

    Many instructors are hesitant to implement active learning strategies in their introductory astronomy classrooms because they are not sure which techniques they should use, how to implement those techniques, and question whether the investment in changing their course will really bring the advertised learning gains. We present an example illustrating how thoughtful and systematic implementation of active learning strategies into a traditionally taught Astro 101 class can translate into significant increases in students' understanding. We detail the journey of one instructor, over several years, as she changes the instruction and design of her course from one that focuses almost exclusively on lecture to a course that provides an integrated use of several active learning techniques such as Lecture-Tutorials and Think-Pair-Share questions. The students in the initial lecture-only course achieved a low normalized gain score of only 0.2 on the Light and Spectroscopy Concept Inventory (LSCI), while the students in the re-designed learner-centered course achieved a significantly better normalized gain of 0.43. This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. 0715517, a CCLI Phase III Grant for the Collaboration of Astronomy Teaching Scholars (CATS), and Grant No. 0847170, a PAARE Grant for the Calfornia-Arizona Minority Partnership for Astronomy Research and Education (CAMPARE). Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.

  3. Using Learner-Centered Strategies to Improve Student Understanding About Stars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bailey, Janelle M.; Nagamine, K.

    2009-01-01

    As faculty increasingly adopt learner-centered strategies for their introductory astronomy classes, it is important to determine whether such strategies are positively impacting student learning. One measure of student achievement that has been adopted is the use of concept inventories to measure changes in understanding of a specific topic over some period of instruction. The Star Properties Concept Inventory (SPCI) was used as a pre/posttest in a lecture-only course during Spring 2007 and again in Fall 2007 when the instructors incorporated Peer Instruction-style questions and Lecture Tutorials. Initial analysis shows that although pretest results were not significantly different between the two semesters, posttest results for the Fall 2007 semester are statistically significantly higher than those of the Spring 2007 offering. This result supports the idea that learner-centered strategies are more effective at supporting student understanding than are traditional lecture-only methods. This project is supported by the University of Nevada, Las Vegas Division of Research and Graduate Studies.

  4. Learning from Our Evolving Understanding of Biophysical Interactions to Improve River Restoration Practice.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sear, D. A.

    2014-12-01

    Restoration of riverine habitats has largely proceeded on the assumption that by improving physical habitat, and more latterly processes, biophysical interactions will reassemble to a state similar to that prior to the disturbance event. Whilst there had been little monitoring to support this view, there is increasing evidence that the complexity of ecological systems demands a greater understanding of these biophysical interactions before we can state that a restoration has succeeded. In this paper I will draw on two examples to demonstrate the importance of understanding the spatial as well as the temporal scale of biophysical interactions. In the first example, field and modelling was used to demonstrate how different location of large wood and forest restoration can result in different hydrological outcomes. Similarly, as the forest matures it is possible to see change in restoration outcomes, extending beyond the lifetime of the project. In the second example I demonstrate how climate and land use drive the biophysical interactions within spawning salmonid habitats, research that questions accepted models used in the restoration of salmonid spawning habitat. Finally the paper reflects on the problems of restoring complex ecosystems; and points towards the need for improvements in how we research and communicate with stakeholders who ultimately live by the streams we restore.

  5. Anticipated Improvements in Precipitation Physics and Understanding of Water Cycle from GPM Mission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smith, Eric A.

    2003-01-01

    The GPM mission is currently planned for start in the late-2007 to early-2008 time frame. Its main scientific goal is to help answer pressing scientific problems arising within the context of global and regional water cycles. These problems cut across a hierarchy of scales and include climate-water cycle interactions, techniques for improving weather and climate predictions, and better methods for combining observed precipitation with hydrometeorological prediction models for applications to hazardous flood-producing storms, seasonal flood/draught conditions, and fresh water resource assessments. The GPM mission will expand the scope of precipitation measurement through the use of a constellation of some 9 satellites, one of which will be an advanced TRMM-like core satellite carrying a dual-frequency Ku-Ka band precipitation radar and an advanced, multifrequency passive microwave radiometer with vertical-horizontal polarization discrimination. The other constellation members will include new dedicated satellites and co-existing operational/research satellites carrying similar (but not identical) passive microwave radiometers. The goal of the constellation is to achieve approximately 3-hour sampling at any spot on the globe -- continuously. The constellation s orbit architecture will consist of a mix of sun-synchronous and non-sun-synchronous satellites with the core satellite providing measurements of cloud-precipitation microphysical processes plus calibration-quality rainrate retrievals to be used with the other retrieval information to ensure bias-free constellation coverage. GPM is organized internationally, involving existing, pending, projected, and under-study partnerships which will link NASA and NOAA in the US, NASDA in Japan, ESA in Europe, ISRO in India, CNES in France, and possibly AS1 in Italy, KARI in South Korea, CSA in Canada, and AEB in Brazil. Additionally, the program is actively pursuing agreements with other international collaborators and

  6. Development and evaluation of a tutorial to improve students' understanding of a lock-in amplifier

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    DeVore, Seth; Gauthier, Alexandre; Levy, Jeremy; Singh, Chandralekha

    2016-12-01

    A lock-in amplifier is a versatile instrument frequently used in physics research. However, many students struggle with the basic operating principles of a lock-in amplifier which can lead to a variety of difficulties. To improve students' understanding, we have been developing and evaluating a research-based tutorial which makes use of a computer simulation of a lock-in amplifier. The tutorial is based on a field-tested approach in which students realize their difficulties after predicting the outcome of simulated experiments involving a lock-in amplifier and check their predictions using the simulated lock-in amplifier. Then, the tutorial provides guidance and strives to help students develop a coherent understanding of the basics of a lock-in amplifier. The tutorial development involved interviews with physics faculty members and graduate students and iteration of many versions of the tutorial with professors and graduate students. The student difficulties with lock-in amplifiers and the development and evaluation of the research-based tutorial to help students develop a functional understanding of this device are discussed.

  7. Ecosystem function in waste stabilisation ponds: Improving water quality through a better understanding of biophysical coupling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghadouani, Anas; Reichwaldt, Elke S.; Coggins, Liah X.; Ivey, Gregory N.; Ghisalberti, Marco; Zhou, Wenxu; Laurion, Isabelle; Chua, Andrew

    2014-05-01

    Wastewater stabilisation ponds (WSPs) are highly productive systems designed to treat wastewater using only natural biological and chemical processes. Phytoplankton, microbial communities and hydraulics play important roles for ecosystem functionality of these pond systems. Although WSPs have been used for many decades, they are still considered as 'black box' systems as very little is known about the fundamental ecological processes which occur within them. However, a better understanding of how these highly productive ecosystems function is particularly important for hydrological processes, as treated wastewater is commonly discharged into streams, rivers, and oceans, and subject to strict water quality guidelines. WSPs are known to operate at different levels of efficiency, and treatment efficiency of WSPs is dependent on physical (flow characteristics and sludge accumulation and distribution) and biological (microbial and phytoplankton communities) characteristics. Thus, it is important to gain a better understanding of the role and influence of pond hydraulics and vital microbial communities on pond performance and WSP functional stability. The main aim of this study is to investigate the processes leading to differences in treatment performance of WSPs. This study uses a novel and innovative approach to understand these factors by combining flow cytometry and metabolomics to investigate various biochemical characteristics, including the metabolite composition and microbial community within WSPs. The results of these analyses will then be combined with results from the characterisation of pond hydrodynamics and hydraulic performance, which will be performed using advanced hydrodynamic modelling and advanced sludge profiling technology. By understanding how hydrodynamic and biological processes influence each other and ecosystem function and stability in WSPs, we will be able to propose ways to improve the quality of the treatment using natural processes, with

  8. Understanding and Improving CRM and GCM Simulations of Cloud Systems with ARM Observations

    SciTech Connect

    Wu, Xiaoqing

    2014-02-25

    The works supported by this ASR project lay the solid foundation for improving the parameterization of convection and clouds in the NCAR CCSM and the climate simulations. We have made a significant use of CRM simulations and ARM observations to produce thermodynamically and dynamically consistent multi-year cloud and radiative properties; improve the GCM simulations of convection, clouds and radiative heating rate and fluxes using the ARM observations and CRM simulations; and understand the seasonal and annual variation of cloud systems and their impacts on climate mean state and variability. We conducted multi-year simulations over the ARM SGP site using the CRM with multi-year ARM forcing data. The statistics of cloud and radiative properties from the long-term CRM simulations were compared and validated with the ARM measurements and value added products (VAP). We evaluated the multi-year climate simulations produced by the GCM with the modified convection scheme. We used multi-year ARM observations and CRM simulations to validate and further improve the trigger condition and revised closure assumption in NCAR GCM simulations that demonstrate the improvement of climate mean state and variability. We combined the improved convection scheme with the mosaic treatment of subgrid cloud distributions in the radiation scheme of the GCM. The mosaic treatment of cloud distributions has been implemented in the GCM with the original convection scheme and enables the use of more realistic cloud amounts as well as cloud water contents in producing net radiative fluxes closer to observations. A physics-based latent heat (LH) retrieval algorithm was developed by parameterizing the physical linkages of observed hydrometeor profiles of cloud and precipitation to the major processes related to the phase change of atmospheric water.

  9. Exercise Improves Executive Function and Achievement and Alters Brain Activation in Overweight Children: A Randomized Controlled Trial

    PubMed Central

    Davis, Catherine L.; Tomporowski, Phillip D.; McDowell, Jennifer E.; Austin, Benjamin P.; Miller, Patricia H.; Yanasak, Nathan E.; Allison, Jerry D.; Naglieri, Jack A.

    2010-01-01

    Objective This experiment tested the hypothesis that exercise would improve executive function. Design Sedentary, overweight 7- to 11-year-old children (N = 171, 56% female, 61% Black, M ± SD age 9.3 ± 1.0 yrs, body mass index (BMI) 26 ± 4.6 kg/m2, BMI z-score 2.1 ± 0.4) were randomized to 13 ± 1.6 weeks of an exercise program (20 or 40 minutes/day), or a control condition. Main outcome measures Blinded, standardized psychological evaluations (Cognitive Assessment System and Woodcock-Johnson Tests of Achievement III) assessed cognition and academic achievement. Functional magnetic resonance imaging measured brain activity during executive function tasks. Results Intent to treat analysis revealed dose response benefits of exercise on executive function and mathematics achievement. Preliminary evidence of increased bilateral prefrontal cortex activity and reduced bilateral posterior parietal cortex activity due to exercise was also observed. Conclusion Consistent with results obtained in older adults, a specific improvement on executive function and brain activation changes due to exercise were observed. The cognitive and achievement results add evidence of dose response, and extend experimental evidence into childhood. This study provides information on an educational outcome. Besides its importance for maintaining weight and reducing health risks during a childhood obesity epidemic, physical activity may prove to be a simple, important method of enhancing aspects of children’s mental functioning that are central to cognitive development. This information may persuade educators to implement vigorous physical activity. PMID:21299297

  10. Understanding and Improving the Quality of Inter-Layer Interfaces in FDM 3-D Printing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Duranty, Edward; Spradlin, Brandon; Stark, Madeline; Dadmun, Mark

    We have studied the effect of thermal history and material diffusion on inter-filament bonding in FDM 3D printed parts and developed methods to improve interlayer adhesion in 3D printed samples. The available thermal energy during the FDM print environment was determined quantitatively by tracking the temperature of the bottom most printed layer using a thermocouple attached to the print bed. The role of the thermal history of the filaments during the deposition process on the quality of inter-layer bonding in an FDM ABS part was monitored using a T-peel test and an innovative sample design. Additionally, the interfacial adhesion between 3D printed layers was improved by the addition of a chemical cross-linking agent 4,4 '-diaminodiphenylmethane (DADPM). These studies have increased our understanding of the importance of the complex thermal history of a filament in the 3D printing process and its impact on the interfaces that form during the fused deposition modeling print process. Furthermore, the chemical crosslinking process demonstrates a potential method to covalently link layers in FDM printed parts, improving the bulk strength of the part. The insight provided in this work may aid in the development of techniques that can produce FDM parts that could be used as replacement parts in structural applications, or as completely standalone products.

  11. The impact of recent improvements in cryo-electron microscopy technology on the understanding of bacterial ribosome assembly.

    PubMed

    Razi, Aida; Britton, Robert A; Ortega, Joaquin

    2016-12-08

    Cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) had played a central role in the study of ribosome structure and the process of translation in bacteria since the development of this technique in the mid 1980s. Until recently cryo-EM structures were limited to ∼10 Å in the best cases. However, the recent advent of direct electron detectors has greatly improved the resolution of cryo-EM structures to the point where atomic resolution is now achievable. This improved resolution will allow cryo-EM to make groundbreaking contributions in essential aspects of ribosome biology, including the assembly process. In this review, we summarize important insights that cryo-EM, in combination with chemical and genetic approaches, has already brought to our current understanding of the ribosomal assembly process in bacteria using previous detector technology. More importantly, we discuss how the higher resolution structures now attainable with direct electron detectors can be leveraged to propose precise testable models regarding this process. These structures will provide an effective platform to develop new antibiotics that target this fundamental cellular process.

  12. Understanding and improving lithium ion batteries through mathematical modeling and experiments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deshpande, Rutooj D.

    There is an intense, worldwide effort to develop durable lithium ion batteries with high energy and power densities for a wide range of applications, including electric and hybrid electric vehicles. For improvement of battery technology understanding the capacity fading mechanism in batteries is of utmost importance. Novel electrode material and improved electrode designs are needed for high energy- high power batteries with less capacity fading. Furthermore, for applications such as automotive applications, precise cycle-life prediction of batteries is necessary. One of the critical challenges in advancing lithium ion battery technologies is fracture and decrepitation of the electrodes as a result of lithium diffusion during charging and discharging operations. When lithium is inserted in either the positive or negative electrode, there is a volume change associated with insertion or de-insertion. Diffusion-induced stresses (DISs) can therefore cause the nucleation and growth of cracks, leading to mechanical degradation of the batteries. With different mathematical models we studied the behavior of diffusion induces stresses and effects of electrode shape, size, concentration dependent material properties, pre-existing cracks, phase transformations, operating conditions etc. on the diffusion induced stresses. Thus we develop tools to guide the design of the electrode material with better mechanical stability for durable batteries. Along with mechanical degradation, chemical degradation of batteries also plays an important role in deciding battery cycle life. The instability of commonly employed electrolytes results in solid electrolyte interphase (SEI) formation. Although SEI formation contributes to irreversible capacity loss, the SEI layer is necessary, as it passivates the electrode-electrolyte interface from further solvent decomposition. SEI layer and diffusion induced stresses are inter-dependent and affect each-other. We study coupled chemical

  13. Self-diagnosis as a tool for supporting students’ conceptual understanding and achievements in physics: the case of 8th-graders studying force and motion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Safadi, Rafi'

    2017-01-01

    I examined the impact of a self-diagnosis activity on students’ conceptual understanding and achievements in physics. This activity requires students to self-diagnose their solutions to problems that they have solved on their own—namely, to identify and explain their errors—and self-score them—that is, assign scores to their solutions—aided by a rubric demonstrating how to solve each problem step by step. I also examined a common practice in the physics classroom in which teachers manage a whole class discussion during which they solve, together with their students, problems that students had solved on their own. Three 8th-grade classes studying force and motion with the same teacher participated. Students were first taught the unit in force and motion. Then a first summative exam was administered. Next, two classes (59 students) were assigned to the self-diagnosis activity and the other class to the whole class discussion (27 students). To assess students’ learning with these activities, a repeat exam was administered. Results suggest that at least for teachers who are not competent in managing argumentative class discussions, the self-diagnosis activity is more effective than the whole class discussion in advancing students’ conceptual understanding and achievements. I account for these results and suggest possible directions for future research.

  14. A theoretical understanding on the CO-tolerance mechanism of the WC(0001) supported Pt monolayer: Some improvement strategies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Xilin; Lu, Zhansheng; Yang, Zongxian

    2016-12-01

    The deposition of platinum on the tungsten carbide (Pt/WC) have been achieved and proved with high stability, activity and CO-tolerance toward some reactions in experiments. Although a lot of experimental efforts have been focused on understanding the activity, stability and CO-tolerance of Pt/WC, the relevant theoretical works related to the CO-tolerance mechanism are still scarce. In current study, the adsorption and oxidation of CO on the Pt monolayer supported on WC(0001) surface (PtML/WC(0001)) are investigated using density functional theory calculations. It is found that the oxidation of CO on PtML/WC(0001) proceeds preferably along the Langmuir-Hinshelwood mechanism. The energy barrier of 1.06 eV for the rate-determining step of OOCO formation is almost equal to that (1.05 eV) for CO oxidation by atomic O on Pt(111), while the adsorption energy of 1.59 eV for CO on PtML/WC(0001) is smaller than that on Pt(111) (1.85 eV), indicating that the high resistance to CO poisoning of PtML/WC(0001) may originate from the weak interaction between them. To further improve the CO tolerance, some probable strategies are proposed based on the relevant kinetics results. The current results are helpful to understanding the origin of the highly resistant to CO poisoning of PtML/WC(0001) and rationally designing catalysts to improve the CO oxidation activity.

  15. The CONVEX project - Using Observational Evidence and Process Understanding to Improve Projections of Extreme Rainfall Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blenkinsop, Stephen; Fowler, Hayley; Kendon, Elizabeth; Chan, Steven; Ferro, Chris; Roberts, Nigel; Sessford, Pat

    2014-05-01

    During the last decade, widespread major flood events in the UK and across Europe have focussed attention on perceived increases in rainfall intensities. Whilst Regional Climate Models (RCMs) are able to simulate the magnitude and spatial pattern of observed daily extreme rainfall events more reliably than Global Circulation Models (GCMs), they still underestimate extreme rainfall in relation to observations and do not capture the properties of sub-daily events that may lead to flooding in urban areas. In the UK and Europe, particularly during the summer, a large proportion of precipitation comes from convective storms that are typically too small to be explicitly represented by climate models. Instead, convection parameterisation schemes are necessary to represent the larger-scale effect of unresolved convective cells. The CONVEX project (CONVective EXtremes) argues that an integrated approach is needed to provide improvements in estimates of change in extreme rainfall, particularly for summer convective events. As usable predictions require the synthesis of observations, understanding of atmospheric processes and models, a change in focus from traditional validation exercises (comparing modelled and observed extremes) to an understanding and quantification of the causes for model deficiencies in the simulation of extreme rainfall processes on different spatial and temporal scales is needed. By adopting this new focus CONVEX aims to contribute to the goals of enabling society to respond to global climate change and predicting the regional and local impacts of environmental change on timescales from days to decades. In addition to an improved understanding of the spatial-temporal characteristics of extreme rainfall processes (principally in the UK) the project is also assessing the influence of model parameterisations and resolution on the simulation of extreme rainfall events and processes. Under the project the UK Meteorological Office has run new RCM simulations

  16. Understanding and Improving High-Temperature Structural Properties of Metal-Silicide Intermetallics

    SciTech Connect

    Bruce S. Kang

    2005-10-10

    The objective of this project was to understand and improve high-temperature structural properties of metal-silicide intermetallic alloys. Through research collaboration between the research team at West Virginia University (WVU) and Dr. J.H. Schneibel at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), molybdenum silicide alloys were developed at ORNL and evaluated at WVU through atomistic modeling analyses, thermo-mechanical tests, and metallurgical studies. In this study, molybdenum-based alloys were ductilized by dispersing MgAl2O4 or MgO spinel particles. The addition of spinel particles is hypothesized to getter impurities such as oxygen and nitrogen from the alloy matrix with the result of ductility improvement. The introduction of fine dispersions has also been postulated to improve ductility by acting as a dislocation source or reducing dislocation pile-ups at grain boundaries. The spinel particles, on the other hand, can also act as local notches or crack initiation sites, which is detrimental to the alloy mechanical properties. Optimization of material processing condition is important to develop the desirable molybdenum alloys with sufficient room-temperature ductility. Atomistic analyses were conducted to further understand the mechanism of ductility improvement of the molybdenum alloys and the results showed that trace amount of residual oxygen may be responsible for the brittle behavior of the as-cast Mo alloys. For the alloys studied, uniaxial tensile tests were conducted at different loading rates, and at room and elevated temperatures. Thermal cycling effect on the mechanical properties was also studied. Tensile tests for specimens subjected to either ten or twenty thermal cycles were conducted. For each test, a follow-up detailed fractography and microstructural analysis were carried out. The test results were correlated to the size, density, distribution of the spinel particles and processing time. Thermal expansion tests were carried out using thermo

  17. Improved understanding of geologic CO{sub 2} storage processes requires risk-driven field experiments

    SciTech Connect

    Oldenburg, C.M.

    2011-06-01

    The need for risk-driven field experiments for CO{sub 2} geologic storage processes to complement ongoing pilot-scale demonstrations is discussed. These risk-driven field experiments would be aimed at understanding the circumstances under which things can go wrong with a CO{sub 2} capture and storage (CCS) project and cause it to fail, as distinguished from accomplishing this end using demonstration and industrial scale sites. Such risk-driven tests would complement risk-assessment efforts that have already been carried out by providing opportunities to validate risk models. In addition to experimenting with high-risk scenarios, these controlled field experiments could help validate monitoring approaches to improve performance assessment and guide development of mitigation strategies.

  18. Understanding the influence of educational attainment on kidney health and opportunities for improved care.

    PubMed

    Green, Jamie A; Cavanaugh, Kerri L

    2015-01-01

    Educational attainment is an important but often overlooked contributor to health outcomes in patients with kidney disease. Those with lower levels of education have an increased risk of ESRD, complications of peritoneal dialysis, worse transplant outcomes, and mortality. Mediators of these associations are poorly understood but involve a complex interplay between health knowledge, behaviors, and socioeconomic and psychosocial factors. Interventions targeting these aspects of care have the potential to reduce disparities related to educational attainment; however, few programs have been described that specifically address this issue. Future research efforts should not only systematically assess level of educational attainment but also report the differential impact of interventions across educational strata. In addition, routine measurement of health literacy may be useful to identify high-risk patients independent of years of schooling. A better understanding of the influence of educational attainment on kidney health provides an opportunity to improve the care and outcomes of vulnerable patients with kidney disease.

  19. Sexual dimorphism in immunity: improving our understanding of vaccine immune responses in men.

    PubMed

    Furman, David

    2015-03-01

    Weaker immune responses are often observed in males compared to females. Since female hormones have proinflammatory properties and androgens have potent immunomodulatory effects, this sexual dimorphism in the immune response seems to be hormone dependent. Despite our current knowledge about the effect of sex hormones on immune cells, definition of the factors driving the sex differences in immunoclinical outcomes, such as the diminished response to infection and vaccination observed in men or the higher rates of autoimmunity observed in females, remains elusive. Recently, systems approaches to immune function have started to suggest a way toward establishing this connection. Such studies promise to improve our understanding of the mechanisms underlying the sexual dimorphism observed in the human immune system.

  20. Animal virus discovery: improving animal health, understanding zoonoses, and opportunities for vaccine development

    PubMed Central

    Delwart, Eric

    2012-01-01

    The characterization of viral genomes has accelerated due to improvement in DNA sequencing technology. Sources of animal samples and molecular methods for the identification of novel viral pathogens and steps to determine their pathogenicity are listed. The difficulties for predicting future cross-species transmissions are highlighted by the wide diversity of known viral zoonoses. Recent surveys of viruses in wild and domesticated animals have characterized numerous viruses including some closely related to those infecting humans. The detection of multiple genetic lineages within viral families infecting a single host species, phylogenetically interspersed with viruses found in other host species, reflects frequent past cross-species transmissions. Numerous opportunities for the generation of novel vaccines will arise from a better understanding of animal viromes. PMID:22463981

  1. An improved conceptual understanding of snowmelt and groundwater dynamics in the semi-arid Andes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sproles, Eric; Hevia, Andres; Soulsby, Chris; Tetzlaff, Doerthe

    2016-04-01

    The contribution of snowmelt to groundwater has long been recognized as an important component of the hydrological cycle in semi-arid northern central Chile (29°-32°S). Despite its importance as a water resource, this transition to groundwater remains poorly understood. Climatically, the High Cordillera in northern central Chile receives approximately 10 times as much annual precipitation as the valley bottoms, falling almost exclusively as snow above 3500 m during the winter months. Geologically, the High Cordillera is characterized by steep topography and a highly dissected landscape underlain by bedrock. Groundwater stores in the mountain headwaters are assumed to be constrained to the valley bottoms. The current working hypothesis of watershed processes in the High Cordillera describes fluxes of spring melt moving through the hillslope via local flowpaths to valley aquifers that recharge streams throughout the headwater reaches. Previous studies in the region indicate Pre-Cordilleran aquifers, located in lower elevation dry ephemeral valleys, are hydrologically disconnected from the High Cordillera. These watersheds have no seasonal snowpack, and recharge occurs primarily during infrequent rain events. These isolated Pre-Cordilleran aquifers serve as an important water resource for rural residents and infrastructure. We present stable isotope, geochemical, and groundwater level data from the wet El Niño winter of 2015 that suggests a topographically disconnected aquifer in the Pre-Cordillera received considerable recharge from High Cordillera snowmelt. These novel findings are indicative of deep groundwater flow paths between the Pre- and High Cordillera during the wet winter and spring of 2015, and improve the conceptual understanding of hydrological processes in the region. Additionally, these results will directly benefit groundwater management in the Pre-Cordillera and better inform modeling efforts in the High Cordillera. While this study is limited to

  2. Active learning to understand infectious disease models and improve policy making.

    PubMed

    Willem, Lander; Stijven, Sean; Vladislavleva, Ekaterina; Broeckhove, Jan; Beutels, Philippe; Hens, Niel

    2014-04-01

    Modeling plays a major role in policy making, especially for infectious disease interventions but such models can be complex and computationally intensive. A more systematic exploration is needed to gain a thorough systems understanding. We present an active learning approach based on machine learning techniques as iterative surrogate modeling and model-guided experimentation to systematically analyze both common and edge manifestations of complex model runs. Symbolic regression is used for nonlinear response surface modeling with automatic feature selection. First, we illustrate our approach using an individual-based model for influenza vaccination. After optimizing the parameter space, we observe an inverse relationship between vaccination coverage and cumulative attack rate reinforced by herd immunity. Second, we demonstrate the use of surrogate modeling techniques on input-response data from a deterministic dynamic model, which was designed to explore the cost-effectiveness of varicella-zoster virus vaccination. We use symbolic regression to handle high dimensionality and correlated inputs and to identify the most influential variables. Provided insight is used to focus research, reduce dimensionality and decrease decision uncertainty. We conclude that active learning is needed to fully understand complex systems behavior. Surrogate models can be readily explored at no computational expense, and can also be used as emulator to improve rapid policy making in various settings.

  3. How does sport psychology actually improve athletic performance? A framework to facilitate athletes' and coaches' understanding.

    PubMed

    Gee, Chris J

    2010-09-01

    The popularity of sport psychology, both as an academic discipline and an applied practice, has grown substantially over the past two decades. Few within the realm of competitive athletics would argue with the importance of being mentally prepared prior to an athletic competition as well as the need to maintain that particular mindset during a competitive contest. Nevertheless, recent research has shown that many athletes, coaches, and sporting administrators are still quite reluctant to seek out the services of a qualified sport psychologist, even if they believe it could help. One of the primary reasons for this hesitation appears to be a lack of understanding about the process and the mechanisms by which these mental skills affect performance. Unlike the "harder sciences" of sport physiology and biochemistry where athletes can see the tangible results in themselves or other athletes (e.g., he or she lifted weights, developed larger muscles, and is now stronger/faster as a result), the unfamiliar and often esoteric nature of sport psychology appears to be impeding a large number of athletes from soliciting these important services. As such, the purpose of this article is to provide the reader with a simple framework depicting how mental skills training translates into improved within-competition performance. This framework is intended to help bridge the general "understanding gap" that is currently being reported by a large number of athletes and coaches, while also helping sport psychology practitioners sell their valuable services to individual athletes and teams.

  4. Active Learning to Understand Infectious Disease Models and Improve Policy Making

    PubMed Central

    Vladislavleva, Ekaterina; Broeckhove, Jan; Beutels, Philippe; Hens, Niel

    2014-01-01

    Modeling plays a major role in policy making, especially for infectious disease interventions but such models can be complex and computationally intensive. A more systematic exploration is needed to gain a thorough systems understanding. We present an active learning approach based on machine learning techniques as iterative surrogate modeling and model-guided experimentation to systematically analyze both common and edge manifestations of complex model runs. Symbolic regression is used for nonlinear response surface modeling with automatic feature selection. First, we illustrate our approach using an individual-based model for influenza vaccination. After optimizing the parameter space, we observe an inverse relationship between vaccination coverage and cumulative attack rate reinforced by herd immunity. Second, we demonstrate the use of surrogate modeling techniques on input-response data from a deterministic dynamic model, which was designed to explore the cost-effectiveness of varicella-zoster virus vaccination. We use symbolic regression to handle high dimensionality and correlated inputs and to identify the most influential variables. Provided insight is used to focus research, reduce dimensionality and decrease decision uncertainty. We conclude that active learning is needed to fully understand complex systems behavior. Surrogate models can be readily explored at no computational expense, and can also be used as emulator to improve rapid policy making in various settings. PMID:24743387

  5. Improving conservation outcomes with a new paradigm for understanding species’ fundamental and realized adaptive capacity

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Beever, Erik; O’Leary, John; Mengelt, Claudia; West, Jordan M.; Julius, Susan; Green, Nancy; Magness, Dawn; Petes, Laura E.; Stein, Bruce A.; Nicotra, Adrienne B; Hellmann, Jessica J; Robertson, Amanda L; Staudinger, Michelle D.; Rosenberg, Andrew A.; Babij, Eleanora; Brennan, Jean; Schuurman, Gregor W; Hofmann, Gretchen E

    2016-01-01

    Worldwide, many species are responding to ongoing climate change with shifts in distribution, abundance, phenology, or behavior. Consequently, natural-resource managers face increasingly urgent conservation questions related to biodiversity loss, expansion of invasive species, and deteriorating ecosystem services. We argue that our ability to address these questions is hampered by the lack of explicit consideration of species’ adaptive capacity (AC). AC is the ability of a species or population to cope with climatic changes and is characterized by three fundamental components: phenotypic plasticity, dispersal ability, and genetic diversity. However, few studies simultaneously address all elements; often, AC is confused with sensitivity or omitted altogether from climate-change vulnerability assessments. Improved understanding, consistent definition, and comprehensive evaluations of AC are needed. Using classic ecological-niche theory as an analogy, we propose a new paradigm that considers fundamental and realized AC: the former reflects aspects inherent to species, whereas the latter denotes how extrinsic factors constrain AC to what is actually expressed or observed. Through this conceptualization, we identify ecological attributes contributing to AC, outline areas of research necessary to advance understanding of AC, and provide examples demonstrating how the inclusion of AC can better inform conservation and natural-resource management.

  6. Redefining fine roots improves understanding of below-ground contributions to terrestrial biosphere processes.

    PubMed

    McCormack, M Luke; Dickie, Ian A; Eissenstat, David M; Fahey, Timothy J; Fernandez, Christopher W; Guo, Dali; Helmisaari, Heljä-Sisko; Hobbie, Erik A; Iversen, Colleen M; Jackson, Robert B; Leppälammi-Kujansuu, Jaana; Norby, Richard J; Phillips, Richard P; Pregitzer, Kurt S; Pritchard, Seth G; Rewald, Boris; Zadworny, Marcin

    2015-08-01

    Fine roots acquire essential soil resources and mediate biogeochemical cycling in terrestrial ecosystems. Estimates of carbon and nutrient allocation to build and maintain these structures remain uncertain because of the challenges of consistently measuring and interpreting fine-root systems. Traditionally, fine roots have been defined as all roots ≤ 2 mm in diameter, yet it is now recognized that this approach fails to capture the diversity of form and function observed among fine-root orders. Here, we demonstrate how order-based and functional classification frameworks improve our understanding of dynamic root processes in ecosystems dominated by perennial plants. In these frameworks, fine roots are either separated into individual root orders or functionally defined into a shorter-lived absorptive pool and a longer-lived transport fine-root pool. Using these frameworks, we estimate that fine-root production and turnover represent 22% of terrestrial net primary production globally - a c. 30% reduction from previous estimates assuming a single fine-root pool. Future work developing tools to rapidly differentiate functional fine-root classes, explicit incorporation of mycorrhizal fungi into fine-root studies, and wider adoption of a two-pool approach to model fine roots provide opportunities to better understand below-ground processes in the terrestrial biosphere.

  7. Redefining fine roots improves understanding of belowground contributions to terrestrial biosphere processes

    SciTech Connect

    McCormack, M. Luke; Dickie, Ian A.; Eissenstat, David M.; Fahey, Timothy J.; Fernandez, Christopher W.; Guo, Dali; Helmisaari, Helja -Sisko; Hobbie, Erik A.; Iversen, Colleen M.; Jackson, Robert B.; Leppälammi-Kujansuu, Jaana; Norby, Richard J.; Phillips, Richard P.; Pregitzer, Kurt S.; Pritchard, Seth G.; Rewald, Boris; Zadworny, Marcin

    2015-03-10

    Fine roots acquire essential soil resources and mediate biogeochemical cycling in terrestrial ecosystems. Estimates of carbon and nutrient allocation to build and maintain these structures remain uncertain due to challenges in consistent measurement and interpretation of fine-root systems. We define fine roots as all roots less than or equal to 2 mm in diameter, yet it is now recognized that this approach fails to capture the diversity of form and function observed among fine-root orders. We demonstrate how order-based and functional classification frameworks improve our understanding of dynamic root processes in ecosystems dominated by perennial plants. In these frameworks, fine roots are separated into either individual root orders or functionally defined into a shorter-lived absorptive pool and a longer-lived transport fine root pool. Furthermore, using these frameworks, we estimate that fine-root production and turnover represent 22% of terrestrial net primary production globally a ca. 30% reduction from previous estimates assuming a single fine-root pool. In the future we hope to develop tools to rapidly differentiate functional fine-root classes, explicit incorporation of mycorrhizal fungi in fine-root studies, and wider adoption of a two-pool approach to model fine roots provide opportunities to better understand belowground processes in the terrestrial biosphere.

  8. Redefining fine roots improves understanding of belowground contributions to terrestrial biosphere processes

    DOE PAGES

    McCormack, M. Luke; Dickie, Ian A.; Eissenstat, David M.; ...

    2015-03-10

    Fine roots acquire essential soil resources and mediate biogeochemical cycling in terrestrial ecosystems. Estimates of carbon and nutrient allocation to build and maintain these structures remain uncertain due to challenges in consistent measurement and interpretation of fine-root systems. We define fine roots as all roots less than or equal to 2 mm in diameter, yet it is now recognized that this approach fails to capture the diversity of form and function observed among fine-root orders. We demonstrate how order-based and functional classification frameworks improve our understanding of dynamic root processes in ecosystems dominated by perennial plants. In these frameworks, finemore » roots are separated into either individual root orders or functionally defined into a shorter-lived absorptive pool and a longer-lived transport fine root pool. Furthermore, using these frameworks, we estimate that fine-root production and turnover represent 22% of terrestrial net primary production globally a ca. 30% reduction from previous estimates assuming a single fine-root pool. In the future we hope to develop tools to rapidly differentiate functional fine-root classes, explicit incorporation of mycorrhizal fungi in fine-root studies, and wider adoption of a two-pool approach to model fine roots provide opportunities to better understand belowground processes in the terrestrial biosphere.« less

  9. Using Computer-Based Visualization Strategies to Improve Students' Understanding of Molecular Polarity and Miscibility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sanger, Michael J.; Badger, Steven M., II

    2001-10-01

    This study reports how instruction including visualization strategies associated with computer animations and electron density plots affected students' conceptual understanding of two chemistry topics. Two sets of students responded to several conceptual questions about molecular polarities and miscibilities and these responses were compared. One group received instruction including the use of wooden model kits and physical demonstrations; the other received similar instruction with the additional use of computer animations and electron-density plots. Students who viewed electron-density plots were more likely to identify symmetric molecules with polar bonds as being nonpolar and provided more complete descriptions of how soap molecules help remove grease from an object. Students who viewed computer animations and electron density plots were also more likely to explain that the intermolecular attractions among water molecules are responsible for the immiscibility of oil and water, and were more likely to recognize that water molecules are attracted to each other and to sodium and chloride ions but are not strongly attracted to hydrogen molecules. Although other studies have shown that computer animations can improve students' conceptual understanding of chemistry, this is the first to demonstrate that electron-density plots mapped with electrostatic potentials can also be an effective visualization strategy.

  10. Fundamentals of Melt-Water Interfacial Transport Phenomena: Improved Understanding for Innovative Safety Technologies in ALWRs

    SciTech Connect

    M. Anderson; M. Corradini; K.Y. Bank; R. Bonazza; D. Cho

    2005-04-26

    The interaction and mixing of high-temperature melt and water is the important technical issue in the safety assessment of water-cooled reactors to achieve ultimate core coolability. For specific advanced light water reactor (ALWR) designs, deliberate mixing of the core-melt and water is being considered as a mitigative measure, to assure ex-vessel core coolability. The goal of this work is to provide the fundamental understanding needed for melt-water interfacial transport phenomena, thus enabling the development of innovative safety technologies for advanced LWRs that will assure ex-vessel core coolability. The work considers the ex-vessel coolability phenomena in two stages. The first stage is the melt quenching process and is being addressed by Argonne National Lab and University of Wisconsin in modified test facilities. Given a quenched melt in the form of solidified debris, the second stage is to characterize the long-term debris cooling process and is being addressed by Korean Maritime University in via test and analyses. We then address the appropriate scaling and design methodologies for reactor applications.

  11. Understanding and improving the one and three times GDP per capita cost-effectiveness thresholds.

    PubMed

    Robinson, Lisa A; Hammitt, James K; Chang, Angela Y; Resch, Stephen

    2017-02-01

    Researchers and policymakers have long been interested in developing simple decision rules to aid in determining whether an intervention is, or is not, cost-effective. In global health, interventions that impose costs per disability-adjusted life year averted less than three and one times gross domestic product per capita are often considered cost-effective and very cost-effective, respectively. This article explores the conceptual foundation and derivation of these thresholds. Its goal is to promote understanding of how these thresholds were derived and their implications, as well as to suggest options for improvement. These thresholds are intended to reflect the monetary value of the benefits to affected individuals, based on their preferences for spending on health vs spending on other goods and services. However, the current values were not rigorously derived, which means that their application may lead to inappropriate conclusions regarding which interventions should be adopted as well as misallocation of resources across health and other investments. Improving the basis for these cost-effectiveness thresholds is of particular importance in low- and middle-income countries, given the limited resources available and the significant needs of their populations.

  12. Progress in Understanding Degradation Mechanisms and Improving Stability in Organic Photovoltaics.

    PubMed

    Mateker, William R; McGehee, Michael D

    2017-03-01

    Understanding the degradation mechanisms of organic photovoltaics is particularly important, as they tend to degrade faster than their inorganic counterparts, such as silicon and cadmium telluride. An overview is provided here of the main degradation mechanisms that researchers have identified so far that cause extrinsic degradation from oxygen and water, intrinsic degradation in the dark, and photo-induced burn-in. In addition, it provides methods for researchers to identify these mechanisms in new materials and device structures to screen them more quickly for promising long-term performance. These general strategies will likely be helpful in other photovoltaic technologies that suffer from insufficient stability, such as perovskite solar cells. Finally, the most promising lifetime results are highlighted and recommendations to improve long-term performance are made. To prevent degradation from oxygen and water for sufficiently long time periods, OPVs will likely need to be encapsulated by barrier materials with lower permeation rates of oxygen and water than typical flexible substrate materials. To improve stability at operating temperatures, materials will likely require glass transition temperatures above 100 °C. Methods to prevent photo-induced burn-in are least understood, but recent research indicates that using pure materials with dense and ordered film morphologies can reduce the burn-in effect.

  13. Jatropha curcas, a biofuel crop: Functional genomics for understanding metabolic pathways and genetic improvement

    PubMed Central

    Maghuly, Fatemeh; Laimer, Margit

    2013-01-01

    Jatropha curcas is currently attracting much attention as an oilseed crop for biofuel, as Jatropha can grow under climate and soil conditions that are unsuitable for food production. However, little is known about Jatropha, and there are a number of challenges to be overcome. In fact, Jatropha has not really been domesticated; most of the Jatropha accessions are toxic, which renders the seedcake unsuitable for use as animal feed. The seeds of Jatropha contain high levels of polyunsaturated fatty acids, which negatively impact the biofuel quality. Fruiting of Jatropha is fairly continuous, thus increasing costs of harvesting. Therefore, before starting any improvement program using conventional or molecular breeding techniques, understanding gene function and the genome scale of Jatropha are prerequisites. This review presents currently available and relevant information on the latest technologies (genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics and metabolomics) to decipher important metabolic pathways within Jatropha, such as oil and toxin synthesis. Further, it discusses future directions for biotechnological approaches in Jatropha breeding and improvement. PMID:24092674

  14. The Cryogenic Dark Matter Search: First 5-Tower Data and Improved Understanding of Ionization Collection

    SciTech Connect

    Bailey, Catherine N.

    2010-01-01

    The Cryogenic Dark Matter Search (CDMS) is searching for Weakly Interacting Massive Particles (WIMPs) with cryogenic particle detectors. These detectors have the ability to discriminate between nuclear recoil candidate and electron recoil background events by collecting both phonon and ionization energy from recoils in the detector crystals. The CDMS-II experiment has completed analysis of the first data runs with 30 semiconductor detectors at the Soudan Underground Laboratory, resulting in a world leading WIMP-nucleon spin-independent cross section limit for WIMP masses above 44 GeV/c2. As CDMS aims to achieve greater WIMP sensitivity, it is necessary to increase the detector mass and discrimination between signal and background events. Incomplete ionization collection results in the largest background in the CDMS detectors as this causes electron recoil background interactions to appear as false candidate events. Two primary causes of incomplete ionization collection are surface and bulk trapping. Recent work has been focused on reducing surface trapping through the modification of fabrication methods for future detectors. Analyzing data taken with test devices has shown that hydrogen passivation of the amorphous silicon blocking layer worsens surface trapping. Additional data has shown that the iron-ion implantation used to lower the critical temperature of the tungsten transition-edge sensors causes a degradation of the ionization collection. Using selective implantation on future detectors may improve ionization collection for events near the phonon side detector surface. Bulk trapping is minimized by neutralizing ionized lattice impurities. Detector investigations at testing facilities and in situ at the experimental site have provided methods to optimize the neutralization process and monitor running conditions to maintain full ionization collection. This work details my contribution to the 5-tower data taking, monitoring, and analysis effort as

  15. Improving our understanding of flood forecasting using earlier hydro-meteorological intelligence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shih, Dong-Sin; Chen, Cheng-Hsin; Yeh, Gour-Tsyh

    2014-05-01

    In recent decades, Taiwan has suffered from severe bouts of torrential rain, and typhoon induced floods have become the major natural threat to Taiwan. In order to warn the public of potential risks, authorities are considering establishing an early warning system derived from an integrated hydro-meteorological estimation process. This study aims at the development and accuracy of such a warning system. So it is first necessary to understand the distinctive features of flood forecasting in integrated rainfall-runoff simulations. Additionally the adequacies of a warning system that is based on extracting useful intelligence from earlier, possibly faulty numerical simulation results are discussed. In order to precisely model flooding, hydrological simulations based upon spot measured rainfall data have been utilized in prior studies to calibrate model parameters. Here, precipitation inputs from an ensemble of almost 20 different realizations of rainfall fields have been used to derive flood forecasts. The flood warning system therefore integrates rainfall-runoff calculations, field observations and data assimilations. Simulation results indicate that the ensemble precipitation estimates generated by a Weather Research Forecasting (WRF) mesoscale model produce divergent estimates. Considerable flooding is often shown in the simulated hydrographs, but the results as to the peak time and peak stage are not always in agreement with the observations. In brief, such forecasts can be good for warning against potential damaging floods in the near future, but the meteorological inputs are not good enough to forecast the time and magnitude of the peaks. The key for such warning system is not to expect highly accurate rainfall predictions, but to improve our understanding from individual ensemble flood forecasts.

  16. Evaluating, understanding and improving the quality of clinical placements for undergraduate nurses: A practice development approach.

    PubMed

    Courtney-Pratt, Helen; Ford, Karen; Marlow, Annette

    2015-11-01

    Supervision and support is central to sustainability of clinical placement experiences of undergraduate nurses, but open to influences that impact nurses' capacity to undertake the role. Whilst supervision of learners is integral to the role of health care professionals, the primary responsibility is to deliver safe and effective care. Supervision of learners in practice is impacted by low levels of organisational support, variable individual preparedness, and lack of feedback and recognition for the role from education and industry partners. Over a period of five years the Quality Clinical Placement Evaluation research team, consisting of a partnership between health care and tertiary sectors have developed, and utilised a practice development approach to understand and support the quality of clinical placement for undergraduates and supervising ward nurses involved in Tasmanian clinical placement programs. Importantly, the approach evolved over time to be a flexible three step program supporting the translation of findings to practice, comprised of an education session related to supervision support; survey distribution to undergraduates and supervising ward nurses following clinical placement; and workshops where stakeholders come together to consider findings of the survey, their experience and the local context, with resultant actions for change. This paper reports on findings from the program after successful implementation in urban tertiary hospitals as it was implemented in non-traditional clinical placement settings, including community, aged care and rural settings. Feedback from clinicians identifies the utility of the three step program across these settings. The unique partnerships and approach to evaluating, understanding and improving quality of clinical placements has potential for transferability to other areas, with the value of findings established for all stakeholders.

  17. Accurate Accumulation of Dose for Improved Understanding of Radiation Effects in Normal Tissue

    SciTech Connect

    Jaffray, David A.; Lindsay, Patricia E.; Brock, Kristy K.; Deasy, Joseph O.; Tome, W.A.

    2010-03-01

    The actual distribution of radiation dose accumulated in normal tissues over the complete course of radiation therapy is, in general, poorly quantified. Differences in the patient anatomy between planning and treatment can occur gradually (e.g., tumor regression, resolution of edema) or relatively rapidly (e.g., bladder filling, breathing motion) and these undermine the accuracy of the planned dose distribution. Current efforts to maximize the therapeutic ratio require models that relate the true accumulated dose to clinical outcome. The needed accuracy can only be achieved through the development of robust methods that track the accumulation of dose within the various tissues in the body. Specific needs include the development of segmentation methods, tissue-mapping algorithms, uncertainty estimation, optimal schedules for image-based monitoring, and the development of informatics tools to support subsequent analysis. These developments will not only improve radiation outcomes modeling but will address the technical demands of the adaptive radiotherapy paradigm. The next 5 years need to see academia and industry bring these tools into the hands of the clinician and the clinical scientist.

  18. Toward an improved understanding of the role of transpiration in critical zone dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mitra, B.; Papuga, S. A.

    2012-12-01

    Evapotranspiration (ET) is an important component of the total water balance across any ecosystem. In subalpine mixed-conifer ecosystems, transpiration (T) often dominates the total water flux and therefore improved understanding of T is critical for accurate assessment of catchment water balance and for understanding of the processes that governs the complex dynamics across critical zone (CZ). The interaction between T and plant vegetation not only modulates soil water balance but also influences water transit time and hydrochemical flux - key factors in our understanding of how the CZ evolves and responds. Unlike an eddy covariance system which provides only an integrated ET flux from an ecosystem, a sap flow system can provide an estimate of the T flux from the ecosystem. By isolating T, the ecohydrological drivers of this major water loss from the CZ can be identified. Still, the species composition of mixed-conifer ecosystems vary and the drivers of T associated with each species are expected to be different. Therefore, accurate quantification of T from a mixed-conifer requires knowledge of the unique transpiration dynamics of each of the tree species. Here, we installed a sap flow system within two mixed-conifer study sites of the Jemez River Basin - Santa Catalina Mountains Critical Zone Observatory (JRB - SCM CZO). At both sites, we identified the dominant tree species and installed sap flow sensors on healthy representatives for each of those species. At the JRB CZO site, sap sensors were installed in fir (4) and spruce (4) trees; at the SCM CZO site, sap sensors were installed at white fir (4) and maple (4) and one dead tree. Meteorological data as well as soil temperature (Ts) and soil moisture (θ) at multiple depths were also collected from each of the two sites. Preliminary analysis of two years of sap flux rate at JRB - SCM CZO shows that the environmental drivers of fir, spruce, and maple are different and also vary throughout the year. For JRB fir

  19. Development and Evaluation of an Intervention to Improve Further Education Students' Understanding of Higher Education Assessment Criteria: Three Studies

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jessen, Anna; Elander, James

    2009-01-01

    This paper reports three studies about preparing Further Education (FE) students for the transition to Higher Education (HE) by improving their understanding of HE assessment criteria. In study 1, students and tutors in both FE and HE were interviewed for a qualitative analysis of their understandings and expectations about assessment criteria. In…

  20. Integration of Measurements and Models Across Spatial Scales for Improved Process Understanding in Arctic and Boreal Ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wullschleger, S. D.; Collier, N.; Kumar, J.; Painter, S. L.; Thornton, P. E.; Wilson, C. J.

    2014-12-01

    Characterizing the spatial variability of properties and processes in Arctic and boreal landscapes is critical for gaining an understanding of ecosystem functioning and for parameterizing process-rich models that simulate feedbacks to a changing climate. However, large-scale models are often poorly informed by process studies and new approaches are needed if we are to better link field and laboratory investigations to climate models. A fundamental goal of the Next-Generation Ecosystem Experiments (NGEE Arctic) project is to accelerate improvements in climate prediction through close integration of field, laboratory, and modeling activities. Geomorphological units, including thaw lakes, drained thaw lake basins, and ice-rich polygonal ground provide the organizing framework for our integrated framework for the coastal plains of the North Slope of Alaska. Process studies and observations of hydrology, geomorphology, biogeochemistry, vegetation patterns, and energy exchange and their couplings are being conducted across nested scales to populate a modeling framework and to achieve a broader goal of optimally informing process representations in global-scale models. We investigate the soil thermal regimes and their control on local scale hydrology for sites near Barrow, Alaska, through simulations at sub-meter scale resolution for low-centered, high-centered and transition polygons. We use high-resolution LiDAR and high-fidelity simulations using several models to couple surface-subsurface processes. A central focus of this challenge is to advance process understanding and predicting the evolution of permafrost thaw, degradation (i.e., thermokarst), and disturbance, and their impact on topography in a warming world and how these changes control the availability of water for biogeochemical, ecological, and physical feedbacks to the climate system.

  1. Understanding Variability in Beach Slope to Improve Forecasts of Storm-induced Water Levels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doran, K. S.; Stockdon, H. F.; Long, J.

    2014-12-01

    The National Assessment of Hurricane-Induced Coastal Erosion Hazards combines measurements of beach morphology with storm hydrodynamics to produce forecasts of coastal change during storms for the Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic coastlines of the United States. Wave-induced water levels are estimated using modeled offshore wave height and period and measured beach slope (from dune toe to shoreline) through the empirical parameterization of Stockdon et al. (2006). Spatial and temporal variability in beach slope leads to corresponding variability in predicted wave setup and swash. Seasonal and storm-induced changes in beach slope can lead to differences on the order of a meter in wave runup elevation, making accurate specification of this parameter essential to skillful forecasts of coastal change. Spatial variation in beach slope is accounted for through alongshore averaging, but temporal variability in beach slope is not included in the final computation of the likelihood of coastal change. Additionally, input morphology may be years old and potentially very different than the conditions present during forecast storm. In order to improve our forecasts of hurricane-induced coastal erosion hazards, the temporal variability of beach slope must be included in the final uncertainty of modeled wave-induced water levels. Frequently collected field measurements of lidar-based beach morphology are examined for study sites in Duck, North Carolina, Treasure Island, Florida, Assateague Island, Virginia, and Dauphin Island, Alabama, with some records extending over a period of 15 years. Understanding the variability of slopes at these sites will help provide estimates of associated water level uncertainty which can then be applied to other areas where lidar observations are infrequent, and improve the overall skill of future forecasts of storm-induced coastal change. Stockdon, H. F., Holman, R. A., Howd, P. A., and Sallenger Jr, A. H. (2006). Empirical parameterization of setup

  2. Out-of-School-Time Academic Programs to Improve School Achievement: A Community Guide Health Equity Systematic Review

    PubMed Central

    Knopf, John A.; Hahn, Robert A.; Proia, Krista K.; Truman, Benedict I.; Johnson, Robert L.; Muntaner, Carles; Fielding, Jonathan E.; Jones, Camara Phyllis; Fullilove, Mindy T.; Hunt, Pete C.; Qu, Shuli; Chattopadhyay, Sajal K.; Milstein, Bobby

    2015-01-01

    Context Low-income and minority status in the United States are associated with poor educational outcomes, which, in turn, reduce the long-term health benefits of education. Objective This systematic review assessed the extent to which out-of-school-time academic (OSTA) programs for at-risk students, most of whom are from low-income and racial/ethnic minority families, can improve academic achievement. Because most OSTA programs serve low-income and ethnic/racial minority students, programs may improve health equity. Design Methods of the Guide to Community Preventive Services were used. An existing systematic review assessing the effects of OSTA programs on academic outcomes (Lauer et al 2006; search period 1985–2003) was supplemented with a Community Guide update (search period 2003–2011). Main Outcome Measure Standardized mean difference. Results Thirty-two studies from the existing review and 25 studies from the update were combined and stratified by program focus (ie, reading-focused, math-focused, general academic programs, and programs with minimal academic focus). Focused programs were more effective than general or minimal academic programs. Reading-focused programs were effective only for students in grades K-3. There was insufficient evidence to determine effectiveness on behavioral outcomes and longer-term academic outcomes. Conclusions OSTA programs, particularly focused programs, are effective in increasing academic achievement for at-risk students. Ongoing school and social environments that support learning and development may be essential to ensure the longer-term benefits of OSTA programs. PMID:26062096

  3. Improvements to the Interpretation and Understanding of SXR Tomography Measurements on MST

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vanmeter, Patrick; Franz, Paolo; Reusch, Lisa; Goetz, John; den Hartog, Daniel

    2016-10-01

    The soft x-ray (SXR) tomography system on MST uses four cameras in a double foil configuration to determine the emissivity and temperature structures of the plasma. The emissivity is due to a combination of bremsstrahlung, recombination, and line radiation due to impurities in the plasma. At higher energies recombination steps and line radiation are no longer present and can therefore be removed using thick filters. However, this limits the range of measurements to high temperature, high performance plasmas. Recent analysis focuses on including these additional sources of radiation in order to extend the effective range of SXR measurements and to explore the agreement of SXR measurements with other diagnostics like the external magnetic sensing coils. The SXR emissivity structure should directly correspond to the structure of the magnetic field; however, there is a discrepancy between the phase of the emissivity reconstructions and magnetic field reconstructions when using a cylindrical approximation to interpret the magnetic signals. This discrepancy was measured for each SXR camera viewing angle and for two distinct plasma conditions, with results supporting the interpretation that it emerges from physical effects of the toroidal geometry. Improving the understanding of these toroidal effects and the effects of radiation from impurity ions will aid in the interpretation of all SXR measurements. Supported by the US DOE.

  4. The Promise and Limitations of Using Analogies to Improve Decision-Relevant Understanding of Climate Change

    PubMed Central

    Stern, Paul C.; Maki, Alexander

    2017-01-01

    To make informed choices about how to address climate change, members of the public must develop ways to consider established facts of climate science and the uncertainties about its future trajectories, in addition to the risks attendant to various responses, including non-response, to climate change. One method suggested for educating the public about these issues is the use of simple mental models, or analogies comparing climate change to familiar domains such as medical decision making, disaster preparedness, or courtroom trials. Two studies were conducted using online participants in the U.S.A. to test the use of analogies to highlight seven key decision-relevant elements of climate change, including uncertainties about when and where serious damage may occur, its unprecedented and progressive nature, and tradeoffs in limiting climate change. An internal meta-analysis was then conducted to estimate overall effect sizes across the two studies. Analogies were not found to inform knowledge about climate literacy facts. However, results suggested that people found the medical analogy helpful and that it led people—especially political conservatives—to better recognize several decision-relevant attributes of climate change. These effects were weak, perhaps reflecting a well-documented and overwhelming effect of political ideology on climate change communication and education efforts in the U.S.A. The potential of analogies and similar education tools to improve understanding and communication in a polarized political environment are discussed. PMID:28135337

  5. A belowground perspective on the drought sensitivity of forests: Towards improved understanding and simulation

    DOE PAGES

    Phillips, Richard P.; Ibanez, Ines; D’Orangeville, Loic; ...

    2016-09-13

    Predicted increases in the frequency and intensity of droughts across the temperate biome have highlighted the need to examine the extent to which forests may differ in their sensitivity to water stress. At present, a rich body of literature exists on how leaf- and stem-level physiology influence tree drought responses; however, less is known regarding the dynamic interactions that occur below ground between roots and soil physical and biological factors. Hence, there is a need to better understand how and why processes occurring below ground influence forest sensitivity to drought. Here, we review what is known about tree species’ belowmore » ground strategies for dealing with drought, and how physical and biological characteristics of soils interact with rooting strategies to influence forest sensitivity to drought. Then, we highlight how a below ground perspective of drought can be used in models to reduce uncertainty in predicting the ecosystem consequences of droughts in forests. Lastly, we describe the challenges and opportunities associated with managing forests under conditions of increasing drought frequency and intensity, and explain how a below ground perspective on drought may facilitate improved forest management.« less

  6. A belowground perspective on the drought sensitivity of forests: Towards improved understanding and simulation

    SciTech Connect

    Phillips, Richard P.; Ibanez, Ines; D’Orangeville, Loic; Hanson, Paul J.; Ryan, Michael G.; McDowell, Nathan G.

    2016-09-13

    Predicted increases in the frequency and intensity of droughts across the temperate biome have highlighted the need to examine the extent to which forests may differ in their sensitivity to water stress. At present, a rich body of literature exists on how leaf- and stem-level physiology influence tree drought responses; however, less is known regarding the dynamic interactions that occur below ground between roots and soil physical and biological factors. Hence, there is a need to better understand how and why processes occurring below ground influence forest sensitivity to drought. Here, we review what is known about tree species’ below ground strategies for dealing with drought, and how physical and biological characteristics of soils interact with rooting strategies to influence forest sensitivity to drought. Then, we highlight how a below ground perspective of drought can be used in models to reduce uncertainty in predicting the ecosystem consequences of droughts in forests. Lastly, we describe the challenges and opportunities associated with managing forests under conditions of increasing drought frequency and intensity, and explain how a below ground perspective on drought may facilitate improved forest management.

  7. The Promise and Limitations of Using Analogies to Improve Decision-Relevant Understanding of Climate Change.

    PubMed

    Raimi, Kaitlin T; Stern, Paul C; Maki, Alexander

    2017-01-01

    To make informed choices about how to address climate change, members of the public must develop ways to consider established facts of climate science and the uncertainties about its future trajectories, in addition to the risks attendant to various responses, including non-response, to climate change. One method suggested for educating the public about these issues is the use of simple mental models, or analogies comparing climate change to familiar domains such as medical decision making, disaster preparedness, or courtroom trials. Two studies were conducted using online participants in the U.S.A. to test the use of analogies to highlight seven key decision-relevant elements of climate change, including uncertainties about when and where serious damage may occur, its unprecedented and progressive nature, and tradeoffs in limiting climate change. An internal meta-analysis was then conducted to estimate overall effect sizes across the two studies. Analogies were not found to inform knowledge about climate literacy facts. However, results suggested that people found the medical analogy helpful and that it led people-especially political conservatives-to better recognize several decision-relevant attributes of climate change. These effects were weak, perhaps reflecting a well-documented and overwhelming effect of political ideology on climate change communication and education efforts in the U.S.A. The potential of analogies and similar education tools to improve understanding and communication in a polarized political environment are discussed.

  8. Long-range correlations improve understanding of the influence of network structure on contact dynamics.

    PubMed

    Peyrard, N; Dieckmann, U; Franc, A

    2008-05-01

    Models of infectious diseases are characterized by a phase transition between extinction and persistence. A challenge in contemporary epidemiology is to understand how the geometry of a host's interaction network influences disease dynamics close to the critical point of such a transition. Here we address this challenge with the help of moment closures. Traditional moment closures, however, do not provide satisfactory predictions close to such critical points. We therefore introduce a new method for incorporating longer-range correlations into existing closures. Our method is technically simple, remains computationally tractable and significantly improves the approximation's performance. Our extended closures thus provide an innovative tool for quantifying the influence of interaction networks on spatially or socially structured disease dynamics. In particular, we examine the effects of a network's clustering coefficient, as well as of new geometrical measures, such as a network's square clustering coefficients. We compare the relative performance of different closures from the literature, with or without our long-range extension. In this way, we demonstrate that the normalized version of the Bethe approximation-extended to incorporate long-range correlations according to our method-is an especially good candidate for studying influences of network structure. Our numerical results highlight the importance of the clustering coefficient and the square clustering coefficient for predicting disease dynamics at low and intermediate values of transmission rate, and demonstrate the significance of path redundancy for disease persistence.

  9. Polymer Solar Cells: Understanding Solvent Interactions and Morphology, and Strategies for Efficiency Improvements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chang, Lilian

    Organic solar cells have the potential to be unrivaled in terms of processing cost, speed, and simplicity. The simplest of such devices consists of a single bulk-heterojunction (BHJ) active layer, in which the electron donor (conjugated polymer) and electron acceptor (fullerene) are deposited from a common solvent. The performance of BHJ solar cells is strongly correlated with the nanoscale structure of the active layer. Various processing techniques have been explored to improve the nanoscale morphology of the BHJ layer, e.g. by varying the casting solvent, thermal annealing, solvent annealing, and solvent additives. An understanding of the role of residual solvent in the BHJ layer is imperative in order to develop strategies for morphology stabilization and preserve the longevity of the device. This work highlights the effect of residual solvents on acceptor, (6,6)-phenyl-C61-butyric acid methyl ester (PCBM) diffusion and ultimately the stability of the morphology. We first show that solvent is retained within the BHJ film despite prolonged heat treatment, leading to extensive phase separation between poly(3-hexylthiophene) (P3HT) and PCBM. We then show that the addition of a small volume fraction of nitrobenzene to the casting solution inhibits the diffusion of PCBM in the film and improves the fill factor of the BHJ device without further tempering. Other commonly used additives for morphology improvement were also investigated, i.e. 1,8-diiodooctane and 1-chloronaphthalene. We show that the choice of solvent additives has direct implications on morphological evolution, i.e. P3HT:PCBM BHJ films processed with a small amount of 1,8-diiodooctane or 1-chloronaphthalene have more crystalline PCBM domains compared to crystalline P3HT domains, while the opposite is true for films cast with nitrobenzene additive and films cast purely from chlorobenzene. The BHJ film cross-links when annealed at 300°C in the presence of 1,8-diiodooctane. Cross-linking is found to

  10. Understanding Teacher Effectiveness: Significant State Data Capacity Is Required to Measure and Improve Teacher Effectiveness. Data for Action 2012

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Data Quality Campaign, 2012

    2012-01-01

    States are increasingly focused on understanding and improving teacher effectiveness. There are several funding opportunities that incentivize states to use data to inform measurements of teacher effectiveness. Local, state, and federal efforts support using data to improve teacher preparation programs. Preparation programs seek "access to data…

  11. Heliophysics 2009 Roadmap and Global Change: Possibilities for Improved Understanding of the Connection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Spann, Jim

    2010-01-01

    Heliophysics is the science that includes all aspects of the research needed to understand the Sun and its effects on the Earth and the solar system. Six science targets: 1. Origins of Near-Earth Plasma - to understand the origin and transport of terrestrial plasma from its source to the magnetosphere and solar wind. 2. Solar Energetic Particle Acceleration and Transport - to understand how and where solar eruptions accelerate energetic particles that reach Earth. 3. Ion-Neutral Coupling in the Atmosphere - to understand how neutral winds control ionospheric variability. 4. Climate Impacts of Space Radiation - to understand our atmosphere s response to auroral, radiation belt, and solar energetic particles, and the associated effects on nitric oxide (NO) and ozone. 5. Dynamic Geospace Coupling - to understand how magnetospheric dynamics provides energy into the coupled ionosphere-magnetosphere system. 6. Heliospheric Magnetics - to understand the flow and dynamics of transient magnetic structures form the solar interior to Earth.

  12. Understanding and improving the mechanical stability of semiconducting polymers for flexible and stretchable electronics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Printz, Adam David

    Polymeric semiconductors offer the promise of low-cost, printable, and mechanically robust electronic devices for use in outdoor, portable, and wearable applications such as organic photovoltaics, biosensors, and electronic skins. However, many organic semiconductors are unable to accommodate the mechanical stresses these applications require, and it is therefore important to understand the factors and parameters that govern the mechanical stability of these materials. Chapter 1 provides a gentle introduction to the electronic and mechanical properties relevant to flexible and stretchable organic semiconductor devices. The idea of inherent competition between electronic performance and mechanical robustness is explored. Chapter 2 investigates the inherent competition between good electronic performance and mechanical robustness in poly(3-alkylthiophene)s. A key finding is a critical alkyl side-chain length that allows for good electronic performance and mechanical compliance. Chapter 3 and Appendix A are further studies on the properties of poly(3-alkylthiophene)s with side-chains close to the critical length to gain better understanding of the transition from good electronic properties and poor mechanical properties to poor electronic properties and good mechanical properties. Chapter 4 and Appendix B detail the effects on mechanical and electronic properties of statistical incorporation of unlike monomer into a low-bandgap polymer backbone in an effort to disrupt aggregation and improve mechanical compliance. Chapter 5 explores how the extent of molecular mixing of polythiophenes and fullerenes---materials common in organic photovoltaics---affects their mechanical properties. Chapter 6 describes the invention of a new technique to determine the yield point of thin films. A dependence on the alkyl-side chain length is observed, as well as a critical film thickness below which the yield point increases substantially. In Chapter 7, the weakly interacting H

  13. Periglacial process research for improved understanding of climate change in periglacial environments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hvidtfeldt Christiansen, Hanne

    2010-05-01

    Periglacial landscapes extend widely outside the glaciated areas and the areas underlain by permafrost and with seasonal frost. Yet recently significant attention has in cryosphere research, related to periglacial geomorphology, been given to a direct climate permafrost relationship. The focus is on the permafrost thermal state including the thickness of the active layer, and often simplifying how these two key conditions are directly climatically controlled. There has been less focus on the understanding and quantification of the different periglacial processes, which largely control the consequences of changing climatic conditions on the permafrost and on seasonal frost all over the periglacial environments. It is the complex relationship between climate, micro-climate and local geomorphological, geological and ecological conditions, which controls periglacial processes. In several cases local erosion or deposition will affect the rates of landform change significantly more than any climate change. Thus detailed periglacial process studies will sophisticate the predictions of how periglacial landscapes can be expected to respond to climatic changes, and be built into Earth System Modelling. Particularly combining direct field observations and measurements with remote sensing and geochronological studies of periglacial landforms, enables a significantly improved understanding of periglacial process rates. An overview of the state of research in key periglacial processes are given focusing on ice-wedges and solifluction landforms, and seasonal ground thermal dynamics, all with examples from the high Arctic in Svalbard. Thermal contraction cracking and its seasonal meteorological control is presented, and potential thermal erosion of ice-wedges leading to development of thermokarst is discussed. Local and meteorological controls on solifluction rates are presented and their climatic control indicated. Seasonal ground thermal processes and their dependence on local

  14. Cardiorespiratory Improvements Achieved by American College of Sports Medicine’s Exercise Prescription Implemented on a Mobile App

    PubMed Central

    Rospo, Gianluca; Valsecchi, Viola; Bonomi, Alberto G; Thomassen, Inge WJ; van Dantzig, Saskia; La Torre, Antonio

    2016-01-01

    Background Strong evidence shows that an increase in cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF) and physical activity (PA) reduces cardiovascular disease risk. Objective To test whether a scientifically endorsed program to increase CRF and PA, implemented on an easy-to-use, always-accessible mobile app would be effective in improving CRF. Methods Of 63 healthy volunteers participating, 18 tested the user interface of the Cardio-Fitness App (CF-App); and 45 underwent a 2-week intervention period, of whom 33 eventually concluded it. These were assigned into three groups. The Step-based App (Step-App) group (n=8), followed 10,000 steps/day prescription, the CF-App group (n=13), and the Supervised Cardio-Fitness (Super-CF) group (n=12), both followed a heart rate (HR)-based program according to American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) guidelines, but either implemented on the app, or at the gym, respectively. Participants were tested for CRF, PA, resting systolic and diastolic blood pressures (SBP, DBP), resting, exercise, and recovery HR. Results CRF increased in all groups (+4.9%; P<.001). SBP decreased in all groups (-2.6 mm Hg; P=.03). DBP decrease was higher in the Super-CF group (-3.5 mm Hg) than in the Step-App group (-2.1 mm Hg; P<.001). Posttest exercise HR decreased in all groups (-3.4 bpm; P=.02). Posttest recovery HR was lower in the Super-CF group (-10.1 bpm) than in the other two groups (CF-App: -4.9 bpm, Step-App: -3.3 bpm; P<.001). The CF-App group, however, achieved these improvements with more training heart beats (P<.01). Conclusions A 10,000 steps/day target-based app improved CRF similar to an ACSM guideline-based program whether it was implemented on a mobile app or in supervised gym sessions. PMID:27339153

  15. Integrated stratigraphy of the Cenomanian-Turonian boundary interval: improving understanding of Oceanic Anoxic Events

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jarvis, Ian

    2014-05-01

    The Cenomanian-Turonian boundary (CTB) interval ~ 94 Ma represented a period of major global palaeoenvironmental change. Increasingly detailed multidisciplinary studies integrating sedimentological, palaeontological and geochemical data from multiple basins, are enabling the development of refined but complex models that aid understanding of the mechanisms driving changes in ocean productivity and climate. This paper reviews some of the exciting new developments in this field. Facies change characterizes the CTB interval in most areas. In the Chalk seas of northern Europe, a widespead hiatus was followed by the deposition of clay-rich organic-lean beds of the Plenus Marl and its equivalents, and then nodular chalks. In the North Sea basin and its onshore extension in eastern England and northern Germany, black shales of the Black Band (Blodøks Formation, Hasseltal Formation) occur. Similarly, in northern Tethys, a brief interval of black shale accumulation within a predominantly carbonate succession, is exemplified by the Niveau Thomel in the Vocontian Basin (SE France), and the Livello Bonarelli in Italy. Widespread deposition of organic-rich marine sediments during CTB times led to 12C depletion in surface carbon reservoirs (oceans, atmosphere, biosphere), and a large positive global δ13C excursion preserved in marine carbonates and both marine and terrestrial organic matter (Oceanic Anoxic Event 2). Significant biotic turnover characterises the boundary interval, and inter-regional correlation may be achieved at high resolution using integrated biostratigraphy employing macrofossils (ammonites, inoceramid bivalves), microfossils (planktonic foraminifera, dinoflagellate cysts) and calcareous nannofossils. Correlations can be tested against those based on comparison of δ13C profiles - carbon isotope chemostratigraphy, supplemented by oxygen isotope and elemental data. Interpretation of paired carbonate - organic matter δ13C data from multiple CTB sections

  16. Achievability for telerobotic systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kress, Reid L.; Draper, John V.; Hamel, William R.

    2001-02-01

    Methods are needed to improve the capabilities of autonomous robots to perform tasks that are difficult for contemporary robots, and to identify those tasks that robots cannot perform. Additionally, in the realm of remote handling, methods are needed to assess which tasks and/or subtasks are candidates for automation. We are developing a new approach to understanding the capability of autonomous robotic systems. This approach uses formalized methods for determining the achievability of tasks for robots, that is, the likelihood that an autonomous robot or telerobot can successfully complete a particular task. Any autonomous system may be represented in achievability space by the volume describing that system's capabilities within the 3-axis space delineated by perception, cognition, and action. This volume may be thought of as a probability density with achievability decreasing as the distance from the centroid of the volume increases. Similarly, any task may be represented within achievability space. However, as tasks have more finite requirements for perception, cognition, and action, each may be represented as a point (or, more accurately, as a small sphere) within achievability space. Analysis of achievability can serve to identify, a priori, the survivability of robotic systems and the likelihood of mission success; it can be used to plan a mission or portions of a mission; it can be used to modify a mission plan to accommodate unpredicted occurrences; it can also serve to identify needs for modifications to robotic systems or tasks to improve achievability. .

  17. Towards an Enhanced Understanding of Plant–Microbiome Interactions to Improve Phytoremediation: Engineering the Metaorganism

    PubMed Central

    Thijs, Sofie; Sillen, Wouter; Rineau, Francois; Weyens, Nele; Vangronsveld, Jaco

    2016-01-01

    Phytoremediation is a promising technology to clean-up contaminated soils based on the synergistic actions of plants and microorganisms. However, to become a widely accepted, and predictable remediation alternative, a deeper understanding of the plant–microbe interactions is needed. A number of studies link the success of phytoremediation to the plant-associated microbiome functioning, though whether the microbiome can exist in alternative, functional states for soil remediation, is incompletely understood. Moreover, current approaches that target the plant host, and environment separately to improve phytoremediation, potentially overlook microbial functions and properties that are part of the multiscale complexity of the plant-environment wherein biodegradation takes place. In contrast, in situ studies of phytoremediation research at the metaorganism level (host and microbiome together) are lacking. Here, we discuss a competition-driven model, based on recent evidence from the metagenomics level, and hypotheses generated by microbial community ecology, to explain the establishment of a catabolic rhizosphere microbiome in a contaminated soil. There is evidence to ground that if the host provides the right level and mix of resources (exudates) over which the microbes can compete, then a competitive catabolic and plant-growth promoting (PGP) microbiome can be selected for as long as it provides a competitive superiority in the niche. The competition-driven model indicates four strategies to interfere with the microbiome. Specifically, the rhizosphere microbiome community can be shifted using treatments that alter the host, resources, environment, and that take advantage of prioritization in inoculation. Our model and suggestions, considering the metaorganism in its natural context, would allow to gain further knowledge on the plant–microbial functions, and facilitate translation to more effective, and predictable phytotechnologies. PMID:27014254

  18. The Geophysical Kitchen Sink Approach to Improving our Understanding of Volcano-Tectonic Interactions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    George, Ophelia A.

    A multi-prong approach was taken in this dissertation to understand volcanic processes from both a long-term and more immediate hazard perspective. In the long-term, magma sources within the crust may produce measurable surficial response and long-wavelength gravity anomalies that provide information about the extent and depth of this magma. Long-term volcanic hazard forecasting is also improved by developing as complete a record as possible of past events. In the short-term, a long-standing question has been on the casting of precursory volcanic activity in terms of future volcanic hazards. Three studies are presented in this dissertation to address these issues. Inversion of high-resolution ground magnetic data in Amargosa Valley, NV indicates that anomaly B could be generated by a buried shield volcano. This new information changes the event count in this region which in turn affects the overall volcanic hazard estimation. Through the use of Finite Element Models (FEM) an in-depth characterization of the surficial response to magma underplating is provided for the Tohoku Volcanic Arc, Japan. These models indicate that surficial uplift was dominantly driven by mid-crustal intrusions and the magnitude and wavelength of this uplift was mainly controlled by the elastic layer thickness. In Dominica, seismic data were used as weights in spatial intensity maps to generate dynamic volcanic hazard maps influenced by changes in seismicity. These maps show an increasing trend in the north that may be indicative of an increase in earthquake and volcanic hazards.

  19. Towards an Enhanced Understanding of Plant-Microbiome Interactions to Improve Phytoremediation: Engineering the Metaorganism.

    PubMed

    Thijs, Sofie; Sillen, Wouter; Rineau, Francois; Weyens, Nele; Vangronsveld, Jaco

    2016-01-01

    Phytoremediation is a promising technology to clean-up contaminated soils based on the synergistic actions of plants and microorganisms. However, to become a widely accepted, and predictable remediation alternative, a deeper understanding of the plant-microbe interactions is needed. A number of studies link the success of phytoremediation to the plant-associated microbiome functioning, though whether the microbiome can exist in alternative, functional states for soil remediation, is incompletely understood. Moreover, current approaches that target the plant host, and environment separately to improve phytoremediation, potentially overlook microbial functions and properties that are part of the multiscale complexity of the plant-environment wherein biodegradation takes place. In contrast, in situ studies of phytoremediation research at the metaorganism level (host and microbiome together) are lacking. Here, we discuss a competition-driven model, based on recent evidence from the metagenomics level, and hypotheses generated by microbial community ecology, to explain the establishment of a catabolic rhizosphere microbiome in a contaminated soil. There is evidence to ground that if the host provides the right level and mix of resources (exudates) over which the microbes can compete, then a competitive catabolic and plant-growth promoting (PGP) microbiome can be selected for as long as it provides a competitive superiority in the niche. The competition-driven model indicates four strategies to interfere with the microbiome. Specifically, the rhizosphere microbiome community can be shifted using treatments that alter the host, resources, environment, and that take advantage of prioritization in inoculation. Our model and suggestions, considering the metaorganism in its natural context, would allow to gain further knowledge on the plant-microbial functions, and facilitate translation to more effective, and predictable phytotechnologies.

  20. Using relationship styles based on attachment theory to improve understanding of specialty choice in medicine

    PubMed Central

    Ciechanowski, Paul S; Worley, Linda LM; Russo, Joan E; Katon, Wayne J

    2006-01-01

    Background Patient-provider relationships in primary care are characterized by greater continuity and depth than in non-primary care specialties. We hypothesized that relationship styles of medical students based on attachment theory are associated with specialty choice factors and that such factors will mediate the association between relationship style and ultimately matching in a primary care specialty. Methods We determined the relationship styles, demographic characteristics and resident specialty match of 106 fourth-year medical students. We assessed the associations between 1) relationship style and specialty choice factors; 2) specialty choice factors and specialty match, and 3) relationship style and specialty match. We also conducted mediation analyses to determine if factors examined in a specialty choice questionnaire mediate the association between relationship style and ultimately matching in a primary care specialty. Results Prevalence of attachment styles was similar to that found in the general population and other medical school settings with 59% of students rating themselves as having a secure relationship style. Patient centeredness was directly associated, and career rewards inversely associated with matching in a primary care specialty. Students with a self-reliant relationship style were significantly more likely to match in a non-primary care specialty as compared to students with secure relationship style (OR = 5.3, 95% CI 1.8, 15.6). There was full mediation of the association between relationship style and specialty match by the specialty choice factor characterized by patient centeredness. Conclusion Assessing relationship styles based on attachment theory may be a potentially useful way to improve understanding and counsel medical students about specialty choice. PMID:16405723

  1. Improving Students' Understanding of Waves by Plotting a Displacement-Time Graph in Class

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wei, Yajun

    2012-01-01

    The topic of waves is one that many high school physics students find difficult to understand. This is especially true when using some A-level textbooks used in the U.K., where the concept of waves is introduced prior to the concept of simple harmonic oscillations. One of the challenges my students encounter is understanding the difference between…

  2. Improving Students' Understanding of, and Ability to Identify Independent and Dependent Variables

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Aldrich, Rosalie S.

    2015-01-01

    Students need to have a basic understanding of research methods before obtaining a communication degree in order to become an intelligent consumer of research--someone who is able to read, understand, explain, and critically evaluate communication and other research reported in scholarly journals as well as in the popular press. These skills are…

  3. Toward a Research Agenda for Understanding and Improving the Use of Research Evidence

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nelson, Steven R.; Leffler, James C.; Hansen, Barbara A.

    2009-01-01

    Many researchers and research funders want their work to be influential in educational policy and practice, but there is little systematic understanding of how policymakers and practitioners use research evidence, much less how they acquire or interpret it. By understanding what does shape policymakers' and practitioners' decision making and the…

  4. Improvements in Understanding Exposure and Toxicity Issues Associated with RDX: Recent Updates

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2009-05-01

    testing activities will be adversely affected, adversely affecting military readiness.  If these values are artificially low, significant resources...results for:  Ames assays (bacterial mutagenicity)  Mammalian in vitro assays (mouse lymphoma & CHO)  Mammalian in vivo assays (mouse micronucleus ...reduction of uncertainty:  Understanding target of toxicity.  Understanding absorption, distribution, metabolism, excretion and mechanism in test animals

  5. Achievable capacity improvement by using multi-level modulation format in trench-assisted multi-core fiber system.

    PubMed

    Chang, J H; Choi, H G; Chung, Y C

    2013-06-17

    We evaluate the impacts of using multi-level modulation formats on the transmission capacity of the multi-core fiber (MCF) having trench-assisted index profile and hexagonal layout. For this evaluation, we utilize the spectral efficiency per unit area, defined as the spatial spectral efficiency (SSE). The results show that the SSE improvement achievable by using the higher-level modulation format can be reduced due to its lower tolerance to the inter-core crosstalk. We also evaluate the effects of using large effective area on the transmission capacity of the trench-assisted MCF. The results show that the use of large effective area can decrease this capacity due to the increased inter-core crosstalk and lengthened cable cutoff wavelength, although it can help increase the transmission distance. Thus, it is necessary to optimize the effective area of MCF by considering both the SSE and transmission distance. However, the results indicate that the effect of using different effective areas on the SSE-distance product is not significant, and it is not useful to increase the effective area of the trench-assisted MCF to be larger than ~110 μm(2).

  6. Improved understanding of Diatom stratigraphy in a varved sediment through lake monitoring and sediment trap data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maier, Dominique Beatrice; Bigler, Christian

    2016-04-01

    Biological remains in lake sediments reflect past conditions in the lake itself and within its catchment. However, it is difficult to disentangle to which extent the environmental drivers are natural (e.g. population dynamics, climate) or human-induced (e.g. agriculture, forestry). Therefore, comprehensive lake monitoring is crucial to understand taphonomy and sediment formation, and enhances the value of the paleolimnological archive. In this study, we analyze survey data of a varved lake in northern Sweden (Nylandssjön, Nordingrå) with special focus on the diatom record. Different monitoring components are combined, i.e. (1) bi-weekly data of chemical parameters (chlorophyll a, nutrients) covering the period from 2012 to 2015, (2) physical parameters (temperature, oxygen, ice-cover) covering the period from 2000-2015, (3) high-resolution data from a sequential sediment trap covering the period from 2000-2015 and (4) annually resolved diatom data from the sediment varves. Early and intense spring mixing in 2012 translates into a short but vertically pervasive chlorophyll a band which is simultaneously recorded in the sequential trap with a high diatom peak (500 000 valves cm2 d-1). The years 2013 and 2014 show higher chlorophyll a concentrations in the water column, but diatoms do not form a peak flux (>100 000 diatoms cm2 d-1) at any time in the sediment trap, probably due to stratification patterns. The trap record from 2012 indicates a spring bloom dominating the sediment signal, but this is not repeated in 2013 and 2014. Future analyses will be directed towards linking the monitored in-lake processes to annually or even seasonally resolved environmental characteristics. The multiplicity of potential ecological and environmental drivers led us to reverse our analytical view by starting with the diatom stratigraphy in the varved sediment, continuing through the data from sediment trap and water column into the lake catchment to identify deviations (timing

  7. Understanding Evidence-Based Improvement in Higher Education: The Case of Student Engagement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McCormick, Alexander C.; Kinzie, Jillian; Korkmaz, Ali

    2011-01-01

    This paper uses time series data from a widely used assessment to identify colleges and universities that demonstrate positive trends on a range of educational effectiveness measures, describe observed patterns of improvement, and examine informants' accounts of factors that contributed to the improvements. This study informs broad questions about…

  8. Harnessing quantitative genetics and genomics for understanding and improving complex traits in crops

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Classical quantitative genetics aids crop improvement by providing the means to estimate heritability, genetic correlations, and predicted responses to various selection schemes. Genomics has the potential to aid quantitative genetics and applied crop improvement programs via large-scale, high-thro...

  9. Improving students' understanding of carbohydrate metabolism in first-year biochemistry at tertiary level

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anderson, Trevor; Grayson, Diane

    1994-12-01

    Many introductory biochemistry students have problems understanding metabolism and acquiring the skills necessary to study metabolic pathways. In this paper we suggest that this may be largely due to the use of a traditional teaching approach which emphasises memorisation rather than understanding. We present an alternative approach to teaching carbohydrate metabolism which is designed to promote understanding of pathways. The approach also enables regular monitoring of, and reflection on, student progress and the identification of student reasoning and conceptual difficulties through the use of specially designed problems. Preliminary results are presented giving examples of specific student difficulties and the extent to which they were addressed by the alternative instructional approach. A qualitative evaluation of the approach is also presented.

  10. Improving Students' Understanding of Waves by Plotting a Displacement-Time Graph in Class

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wei, Yajun

    2012-04-01

    The topic of waves is one that many high school physics students find difficult to understand. This is especially true when using some A-level textbooks1,2used in the U.K., where the concept of waves is introduced prior to the concept of simple harmonic oscillations. One of the challenges my students encounter is understanding the difference between displacement-time graphs and displacement-position graphs. Many students wonder why these two graphs have the same sinusoidal shape. Having the students use multimedia simulations allows them to see, in a hands-on fashion, the relationship between the two graphs.

  11. Florida State University Receives EPA Funding to Improve Understanding of the Effects of Climate Change on Indoor Air Quality

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    ATLANTA - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today announced that Florida State University in Tallahassee, Fla. has received a $500,000 grant to improve understanding of the effects of climate change on indoor air quality. The grant is a

  12. Research Plans for Improving Understanding of Effects of Very Low-Frequency Noise of Heavy Lift Rotorcraft

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fidell, Sanford; Horonieff, Richard D.; Schmitz, Fredric H.

    2010-01-01

    This report reviews the English-language technical literature on infrasonic and low-frequency noise effects; identifies the most salient effects of noise produced by a future large civil tiltrotor aircraft on crew, passengers, and communities near landing areas; and recommends research needed to improve understanding of the effects of such noise on passengers, crew, and residents of areas near landing pads.

  13. WWC Review of the Report "Improving At-Risk Learners' Understanding of Fractions." What Works Clearinghouse Single Study Review

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    What Works Clearinghouse, 2013

    2013-01-01

    The study examined the effects of "Fraction Challenge," a supplemental small-group tutoring math program that focuses on improving student understanding of fractions. Study authors randomly assigned fourth grade "at-risk" students in 53 classrooms in 13 schools to either an intervention group that received "Fraction…

  14. Improving Individualized Educational Program (IEP) Mathematics Learning Goals for Conceptual Understanding of Order and Equivalence of Fractions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Scanlon, Regina M.

    2013-01-01

    The purpose of this Executive Position Paper project was to develop resources for improving Individual Educational Program (IEP) mathematics learning goals for conceptual understanding of fractions for middle school special education students. The investigation surveyed how IEP mathematics learning goals are currently determined and proposed a new…

  15. Using Targeted Active-Learning Exercises and Diagnostic Question Clusters to Improve Students' Understanding of Carbon Cycling in Ecosystems

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Maskiewicz, April Cordero; Griscom, Heather Peckham; Welch, Nicole Turrill

    2012-01-01

    In this study, we used targeted active-learning activities to help students improve their ways of reasoning about carbon flow in ecosystems. The results of a validated ecology conceptual inventory (diagnostic question clusters [DQCs]) provided us with information about students' understanding of and reasoning about transformation of inorganic and…

  16. An information theory application to improve understanding of subsurface flow and transport conditions at the BARC OPE3 site

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Improving understanding of subsurface conditions includes comparison and discrimination of concurrent models. Additional observations can be useful for that purpose. The objective of this work was to implement and test a novel method for optimization of selecting locations for additional observation...

  17. A Positive Deviance Approach to Understanding Key Features to Improving Diabetes Care in the Medical Home

    PubMed Central

    Gabbay, Robert A.; Friedberg, Mark W.; Miller-Day, Michelle; Cronholm, Peter F.; Adelman, Alan; Schneider, Eric C.

    2013-01-01

    PURPOSE The medical home has gained national attention as a model to reorganize primary care to improve health outcomes. Pennsylvania has undertaken one of the largest state-based, multipayer medical home pilot projects. We used a positive deviance approach to identify and compare factors driving the care models of practices showing the greatest and least improvement in diabetes care in a sample of 25 primary care practices in southeast Pennsylvania. METHODS We ranked practices into improvement quintiles on the basis of the average absolute percentage point improvement from baseline to 18 months in 3 registry-based measures of performance related to diabetes care: glycated hemoglobin concentration, blood pressure, and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol level. We then conducted surveys and key informant interviews with leaders and staff in the 5 most and least improved practices, and compared their responses. RESULTS The most improved/higher-performing practices tended to have greater structural capabilities (eg, electronic health records) than the least improved/lower-performing practices at baseline. Interviews revealed striking differences between the groups in terms of leadership styles and shared vision; sense, use, and development of teams; processes for monitoring progress and obtaining feedback; and presence of technologic and financial distractions. CONCLUSIONS Positive deviance analysis suggests that primary care practices’ baseline structural capabilities and abilities to buffer the stresses of change may be key facilitators of performance improvement in medical home transformations. Attention to the practices’ structural capabilities and factors shaping successful change, especially early in the process, will be necessary to improve the likelihood of successful medical home transformation and better care. PMID:23690393

  18. Interferometric Measurement for Improved Understanding of Boundary Effects in Micromachined Beams

    SciTech Connect

    Bitsie, Fernando; Jensen, Brian D.; de Boer, Maarten

    1999-07-15

    Micromachined beams are commonly used to measure material properties in MEMS. Such measurements are complicated by the fact that boundary effects at the ends of the beams have a significant effect on the properties being measured. In an effort to improve the accuracy and resolution of such measurements, we are conducting a study of support post compliance in cantilever and fixed-fixed beams. Three different support post designs have been analyzed by finite element modeling. The results are then compared to measurements made on actual devices using interferometry. Using this technique, the accuracy of measurements of Young's modulus has been improved. Continuing work will also improve the measurement of residual stress.

  19. General chemistry courses that can affect achievement: An action research study in developing a plan to improve undergraduate chemistry courses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shweikeh, Eman

    Over the past 50 years, considerable research has been dedicated to chemistry education. In evaluating principal chemistry courses in higher education, educators have noted the learning process for first-year general chemistry courses may be challenging. The current study investigated perceptions of faculty, students and administrators on chemistry education at three institutions in Southern California. Via action research, the study sought to develop a plan to improve student engagement in general chemistry courses. A mixed method was utilized to analyze different perceptions on key factors determining the level of commitment and engagement in general chemistry education. The approach to chemistry learning from both a faculty and student perspective was examined including good practices, experiences and extent of active participation. The research study considered well-known measures of effective education with an emphasis on two key components: educational practices and student behavior. Institutional culture was inclusively assessed where cognitive expectations of chemistry teaching and learning were communicated. First, the extent in which faculty members are utilizing the "Seven Principles for Good Practice in Undergraduate Education" in their instruction was explored. Second, student attitudes and approaches toward chemistry learning were examined. The focus was on investigating student understanding of the learning process and the structure of chemistry knowledge. The seven categories used to measure students' expectations for learning chemistry were: effort, concepts, math link, reality link, outcome, laboratory, and visualization. This analysis represents the views of 16 faculty and 140 students. The results validated the assertion that students need some competencies and skills to tackle the challenges of the chemistry learning process to deeply engage in learning. A mismatch exists between the expectations of students and those of the faculty

  20. Can Dynamic Visualizations Improve Middle School Students' Understanding of Energy in Photosynthesis?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ryoo, Kihyun; Linn, Marcia C.

    2012-01-01

    Dynamic visualizations have the potential to make abstract scientific phenomena more accessible and visible to students, but they can also be confusing and difficult to comprehend. This research investigates how dynamic visualizations, compared to static illustrations, can support middle school students in developing an integrated understanding of…

  1. Improved understanding and testing for salinity tolerance in cool-season turfgrasses

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Utah State University and the USDA-ARS in Logan, Utah, were funded to conduct research towards understanding how cool season turf specied tolerate salt stress. Salt tolerant and salt susceptible varieties of Kentucky bluegrass, perennial ryegrass, and the check alkaligrass were planted in a replica...

  2. An Exercise To Improve Career Understanding of Commencing Engineering and Technology Students.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Palmer, Stuart R.; Bray, Sharyn L.

    2002-01-01

    Undergraduate engineering students (n=123) collected and analyzed engineering job ads from newspapers and the Internet and prepared reports. Many began with inaccurate conceptions; 86.2% reported change in their understanding of engineering. Some learned how to increase their employability. Initial concepts of engineering as focused on technology…

  3. Improving Students' Understanding and Explanation Skills through the Use of a Knowledge Building Forum

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hamel, Christine; Turcotte, Sandrine; Laferriere, Therese; Bisson, Nicolas

    2015-01-01

    Education research has shown the importance of helping students develop comprehension skills. Explanation-seeking rather than fact-seeking pedagogies have been shown to warrant deeper student understanding. This study investigates the use of Knowledge Forum (KF) in K-6 classrooms (n = 251) to develop students' explanation skills. To this end, we…

  4. Teachers and Game-Based Learning: Improving Understanding of How to Increase Efficacy of Adoption

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ketelhut, Diane Jass; Schifter, Catherine C.

    2011-01-01

    Interest in game-based learning for K-12 is growing. Thus, helping teachers understand how to use these new pedagogies is important. This paper presents a cross-case study of the development of teacher professional development for the River City project, a games-based multi-user virtual environment science curriculum project for middle school…

  5. Improving Student's Understanding of Career Decision-Making through Service Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Coulter-Kern, Russell G.; Coulter-Kern, Paige E.; Schenkel, Aubree A.; Walker, Danielle R.; Fogle, Kelly L.

    2013-01-01

    This study examines the impact of an experiential service-learning project designed to help high school students begin to choose a career path and increase college students' understanding about how to make career decisions. In the study, two groups of college students attended information sessions on career advising. The first group then helped…

  6. Improving High School Students' Understanding of Potential Difference in Simple Electric Circuits

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Liegeois, Laurent; Chasseigne, G'erard; Papin, Sophie; Mullet, Etienne

    2003-01-01

    This paper reports two studies into the understanding of the concept of potential difference in the current-potential difference-resistance context among 8th-12th graders (Study 1), and the efficiency of a learning device derived from Social Judgment Theory (Study 2). These two studies showed that: (a) when asked to infer potential difference from…

  7. Using Art-Based Chemistry Activities to Improve Students' Conceptual Understanding in Chemistry

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Danipog, Dennis L.; Ferido, Marlene B.

    2011-01-01

    This study aimed to determine the effects of art-based chemistry activities (ABCA) on high school students' conceptual understanding in chemistry. The study used the pretest-posttest control group design. A total of 64 third-year high school students from two different chemistry classes participated in the study. One class was exposed to art-based…

  8. Drafting Exercises to Improve Understanding. Industrial Arts Series No. 10,007.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hinrichs, Roy S., Comp.

    These materials, which can be used to supplement a drafting program, are designed to assist the instructor in helping students develop a better understanding of certain areas of drafting. The materials are divided into exercises that allow the student to devote full attention to one aspect of drafting at a time, and tests, which can be used either…

  9. Effective Use of Discovery Learning to Improve Understanding of Factors That Affect Quality

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mukherjee, Arup

    2015-01-01

    Undergraduate business majors are required to take a course in operations management. In this course, a great deal of emphasis is put on developing a good understanding of quality because this is likely to be the only required course that covers this important topic. Quality of output exhibits a great deal of variation. To produce high quality on…

  10. An Integrated Academic Literacy Approach to Improving Students' Understanding of Plagiarism in an Accounting Course

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Powell, Lisa; Singh, Nishani

    2016-01-01

    Plagiarism in higher education is a widespread and complex issue. Students' understanding of plagiarism differs as a result of combining their prior learning about referencing with their current experience of institutional policies and generic resources. Plagiarism was identified as a major learning issue in a core second-year undergraduate…

  11. Using the Theory of Reasoned Action to Improve the Understanding of Recreation Behavior.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Young, Robert A.; Kent, Anne T.

    1985-01-01

    Using the theory of reasoned action, 100 residents of a small Midwestern city were questioned about intentions to camp, attitudes and beliefs about camping, and influences of "important others" in making decisions to camp. The study results demonstrate that the theory may be useful in predicting behavior and understanding the…

  12. Understanding Change for Effective School Improvement Initiatives: Critical Elements of School Reform

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schnautz, Dee Ann Piercy

    2012-01-01

    With the historical political and social changes, which ultimately affect education, it is easy to see why teachers sometimes balk at new initiatives and perceived new best practices. For change to occur it is important to understand how perception of critical elements of change impact student academic growth. It is also important to have a…

  13. Successful Storyreading Procedures: Working with Kindergarten Teachers to Improve Children's Story Understanding.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Peterman, Carol L.

    Based on the hypothesis that teachers' naturally occurring presentations of storyreading have an effect on children's literacy learning, a study examined whether teachers can be trained to provide a structure for listening to stories and whether this type of presentation would result in significant gains in children's story understanding. Five…

  14. Improved analyses for soil carbohydrates, amino acids, and phenols: Tools for understanding soil processes

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A process-level understanding of soil carbon(C) and nitrogen (N) cycling will be facilitated by precise measurement of biochemical compounds in soil organic matter. This review summarizes some recent developments in analyses for soil carbohydrates, amino compounds (amino acids and amino sugars), and...

  15. Improving efficacy of landscape interventions in the (sub) humid Ethiopian highlands by improved understanding of runoff processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tebebu, Tigist; Steenhuis, Tammo; Dagnew, Dessalegn; Guzman, Christian; Bayabil, Haimanote; Zegeye, Assefa; Collick, Amy; Langan, Simon; MacAlister, Charlotte; Langendoen, Eddy; Yitaferu, Birru; Tilahun, Seifu

    2015-09-01

    Despite millions of dollars invested in soil and water conservation practices in the (sub) humid Ethiopian highlands and billions of hours of food-for-work farm labor, sediment concentration in rivers is increasing. This paper reports on the research to reverse the current trend. Based on the understanding of the hydrology of highlands, we provide evidence on sources of surface runoff and sediment and on mechanisms that govern the erosion processes and approaches and how they affect soil and water conservation practices. We suggest that priority in landscape interventions should be given to re-vegetation of the degraded areas so as to reduce the sediment concentration contributions originating from these areas. Additionally, efforts should be directed to gully rehabilitation in the saturated bottom landscape that may consist of vegetating shallow gullies and stabilizing head cuts of deeper gullies Finally, rehabilitation efforts should be directed to increase the rain water infiltration in the upland areas through the hard pan layer by connecting the land surface to the original deep flow paths that exist below about 60 cm. It will reduce the direct runoff during the rainy season and increase baseflow during the dry season.

  16. How can we improve our understanding of cardiovascular safety liabilities to develop safer medicines?

    PubMed Central

    Laverty, HG; Benson, C; Cartwright, EJ; Cross, MJ; Garland, C; Hammond, T; Holloway, C; McMahon, N; Milligan, J; Park, BK; Pirmohamed, M; Pollard, C; Radford, J; Roome, N; Sager, P; Singh, S; Suter, T; Suter, W; Trafford, A; Volders, PGA; Wallis, R; Weaver, R; York, M; Valentin, JP

    2011-01-01

    Given that cardiovascular safety liabilities remain a major cause of drug attrition during preclinical and clinical development, adverse drug reactions, and post-approval withdrawal of medicines, the Medical Research Council Centre for Drug Safety Science hosted a workshop to discuss current challenges in determining, understanding and addressing ‘Cardiovascular Toxicity of Medicines’. This article summarizes the key discussions from the workshop that aimed to address three major questions: (i) what are the key cardiovascular safety liabilities in drug discovery, drug development and clinical practice? (ii) how good are preclinical and clinical strategies for detecting cardiovascular liabilities? and (iii) do we have a mechanistic understanding of these liabilities? It was concluded that in order to understand, address and ultimately reduce cardiovascular safety liabilities of new therapeutic agents there is an urgent need to: Fully characterize the incidence, prevalence and impact of drug-induced cardiovascular issues at all stages of the drug development process. Ascertain the predictive value of existing non-clinical models and assays towards the clinical outcome. Understand the mechanistic basis of cardiovascular liabilities; by addressing areas where it is currently not possible to predict clinical outcome based on preclinical safety data. Provide scientists in all disciplines with additional skills to enable them to better integrate preclinical and clinical data and to better understand the biological and clinical significance of observed changes. Develop more appropriate, highly relevant and predictive tools and assays to identify and wherever feasible to eliminate cardiovascular safety liabilities from molecules and wherever appropriate to develop clinically relevant and reliable safety biomarkers. PMID:21306581

  17. Measuring water vapor isotopes using Cavity Ring-Down Spectroscopy: improving data quality by understanding systematic errors and calibration techniques

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dennis, Kate J.; Jacobson, Gloria

    2014-05-01

    The stable isotopes of hydrogen and oxygen in water are commonly used to understand the present day hydrological cycle and reconstruct climates of the geologic past. Water vapor isotopes are also increasingly used to probe atmospheric dynamics, including the connection between tropical convection and polar precipitation, stratospheric intrusions of water vapor, boundary layer mixing and cloud formation [e.g., 1, 2, 3]. By utilizing this information, it is now possible to incorporate water isotopes into atmosphere-ocean general circulation models (AOGCMs) as a tool for generating "transfer functions" between a climate variable and its associated isotopic signal [4]. In so doing, we will improve our understanding of how, for example, water isotopes in polar or high-altitude ice cores and the oxygen isotopic composition of terrestrial carbonates are related to global or regional temperature change, seasonality in precipitation, or the intensity of precipitation, among other variables. However, these model-derived functions are only as good as the data, and parameterizations, that go into the models. Over the past five to ten years, the advent of commercially-available laser-based technologies, such as Cavity Ring-Down Spectroscopy (CRDS), has transformed the ease by which water isotopes are measured. This is particularly true for studies of ambient water vapor which are ideally-suited to the continuous flow capacity of CRDS analyzers. Measuring water vapor isotopes by CRDS requires no pre-treatment, discrete sampling or cryogenic trapping; instead water vapor isotopes can be measured in-situ to a high precision. For example, the Picarro L2130-i has a precision, defined as the standard deviation of 100-second average measurements, of better than 0.04 per mil and 0.1 per mil for d18O and dD at 12,500 ppm water vapor concentration, respectively. As a result, the quantity of water vapor isotope data has increased substantially. As with any analytical technique, challenges

  18. Museum Monsters and Victorious Viruses: Improving Public Understanding of Emerging Biomedical Research

    PubMed Central

    Diamond, Judy; Jee, Benjamin; Matuk, Camilla; McQuillan, Julia; Spiegel, Amy N.; Uttal, David

    2015-01-01

    Although microbes directly impact everyone's health, most people have limited knowledge about them. In this article, we describe a museum and media public education campaign aimed at helping diverse audiences better understand emerging knowledge about microbes and infectious disease. Funded primarily by the Science Education Partnership (SEPA) program of the National Institutes of Health, this campaign involved crosscutting programs designed to extend impacts throughout a broad public audience. PMID:26392634

  19. Museum Monsters and Victorious Viruses: Improving Public Understanding of Emerging Biomedical Research.

    PubMed

    Diamond, Judy; Jee, Benjamin; Matuk, Camilla; McQuillan, Julia; Spiegel, Amy N; Uttal, David

    2015-07-01

    Although microbes directly impact everyone's health, most people have limited knowledge about them. In this article, we describe a museum and media public education campaign aimed at helping diverse audiences better understand emerging knowledge about microbes and infectious disease. Funded primarily by the Science Education Partnership (SEPA) program of the National Institutes of Health, this campaign involved crosscutting programs designed to extend impacts throughout a broad public audience.

  20. The solar activity measurements experiments (SAMEX) for improved scientific understanding of solar activity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1989-01-01

    The Solar Activity Measurements Experiments (SAMEX) mission is described. It is designed to provide a look at the interactions of magnetic fields and plasmas that create flares and other explosive events on the sun in an effort to understand solar activity and the nature of the solar magnetic field. The need for this mission, the instruments to be used, and the expected benefits of SAMEX are discussed.

  1. Understanding the Potential of Virtual Environments for Improving C2 Performance

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2011-06-01

    Collaboration, Information-sharing, and Trust) multiplayer online counterterrorism intelligence game . Currently ELICIT has only a primitive textual interface...Trust) multiplayer online counterterrorism intelligence game to understand the comparative advantages and disadvantages of alternate C2 approaches...steps 2 Background • ELICIT: multiplayer online game —Counterterrorism intelligence domain —Like game Clue: ID fictitious terrorist plots • Used for C2

  2. Linking Student Achievement and Teacher Science Content Knowledge about Climate Change: Ensuring the Nations 3 Million Teachers Understand the Science through an Electronic Professional Development System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Niepold, F.; Byers, A.

    2009-12-01

    The scientific complexities of global climate change, with wide-ranging economic and social significance, create an intellectual challenge that mandates greater public understanding of climate change research and the concurrent ability to make informed decisions. The critical need for an engaged, science literate public has been repeatedly emphasized by multi-disciplinary entities like the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the National Academies (Rising Above the Gathering Storm report), and the interagency group responsible for the recently updated Climate Literacy: The Essential Principles of Climate Science. There is a clear need for an American public that is climate literate and for K-12 teachers confident in teaching relevant science content. A key goal in the creation of a climate literate society is to enhance teachers’ knowledge of global climate change through a national, scalable, and sustainable professional development system, using compelling climate science data and resources to stimulate inquiry-based student interest in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). This session will explore innovative e-learning technologies to address the limitations of one-time, face-to-face workshops, thereby adding significant sustainability and scalability. The resources developed will help teachers sift through the vast volume of global climate change information and provide research-based, high-quality science content and pedagogical information to help teachers effectively teach their students about the complex issues surrounding global climate change. The Learning Center is NSTA's e-professional development portal to help the nations teachers and informal educators learn about the scientific complexities of global climate change through research-based techniques and is proven to significantly improve teacher science content knowledge.

  3. Performance Engineering: Understanding and Improving thePerformance of Large-Scale Codes

    SciTech Connect

    Bailey, David H.; Lucas, Robert; Hovland, Paul; Norris, Boyana; Yelick, Kathy; Gunter, Dan; de Supinski, Bronis; Quinlan, Dan; Worley,Pat; Vetter, Jeff; Roth, Phil; Mellor-Crummey, John; Snavely, Allan; Hollingsworth, Jeff; Reed, Dan; Fowler, Rob; Zhang, Ying; Hall, Mary; Chame, Jacque; Dongarra, Jack; Moore, Shirley

    2007-10-01

    Achieving good performance on high-end computing systems is growing ever more challenging due to enormous scale, increasing architectural complexity, and increasing application complexity. To address these challenges in DOE's SciDAC-2 program, the Performance Engineering Research Institute (PERI) has embarked on an ambitious research plan encompassing performance modeling and prediction, automatic performance optimization and performance engineering of high profile applications. The principal new component is a research activity in automatic tuning software, which is spurred by the strong user preference for automatic tools.

  4. Socioscientific Issues: A Path Towards Advanced Scientific Literacy and Improved Conceptual Understanding of Socially Controversial Scientific Theories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pinzino, Dean William

    This thesis investigates the use of socioscientific issues (SSI) in the high school science classroom as an introduction to argumentation and socioscientific reasoning, with the goal of improving students' scientific literacy (SL). Current research is reviewed that supports the likelihood of students developing a greater conceptual understanding of scientific theories as well as a deeper understanding of the nature of science (NOS), through participation in informal and formal forms of argumentation in the context of SSI. Significant gains in such understanding may improve a student's ability to recognize the rigor, legitimacy, and veracity of scientific claims and better discern science from pseudoscience. Furthermore, students that participate in significant SSI instruction by negotiating a range of science-related social issues can make significant gains in content knowledge and develop the life-long skills of argumentation and evidence-based reasoning, goals not possible in traditional lecture-based science instruction. SSI-based instruction may therefore help students become responsible citizens. This synthesis also suggests that that the improvements in science literacy and NOS understanding that develop from sustained engagement in SSI-based instruction will better prepare students to examine and scrutinize socially controversial scientific theories (i.e., evolution, global warming, and the Big Bang).

  5. A Teacher's Guide to Classroom Assessment: Understanding and Using Assessment to Improve Student Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Butler, Susan M.; McMunn, Nancy D.

    2006-01-01

    This book is a comprehensive guide that shows step-by-step how to effectively integrate assessment into the classroom. Written for both new and seasoned teachers, this important book offers a practical aid for developing assessment skills and strategies, building assessment literacy, and ultimately improving student learning. This book consists of…

  6. Using Sap Flow Monitoring for Improved Process-based Ecohydrologic Understanding 2022

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Sap flow measurements can be an important tool for unraveling the complex web of ecosystem fluxes, especially when it is combined with other measurements like eddy covariance, isotopes, remote sensing, etc. In this talk, we will demonstrate how sap flow measurements have improved our process-level u...

  7. Improving Students' Understanding of Quantum Measurement. II. Development of Research-Based Learning Tools

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zhu, Guangtian; Singh, Chandralekha

    2012-01-01

    We describe the development and implementation of research-based learning tools such as the Quantum Interactive Learning Tutorials and peer-instruction tools to reduce students' common difficulties with issues related to measurement in quantum mechanics. A preliminary evaluation shows that these learning tools are effective in improving students'…

  8. The Limits of Tutor Intervention: Understanding Improvement in a Cultural View of FE Learning and Teaching

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    James, David; Wahlberg, Madeleine

    2007-01-01

    From its inception, the Transforming Learning Cultures in Further Education (TLC) project included an explicit intention to identify some principles for the enhancement of learning cultures in order to improve student and teacher learning, and a wish to see how effective different strategies could be in this endeavour. The project showed that both…

  9. Using Scientific Argumentation in a Science Methods Course to Improve Preservice Teachers' Understanding of Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lambert, J. L.; Bleicher, R. E.; Soden, B. J.

    2014-12-01

    Given that K-12 students have numerous alternative conceptions, it is critical that teachers have an understanding of the fundamental science underlying climate change (Feldman et al., 2010). Many teachers, however, do not demonstrate adequate understanding of these concepts (Daskolia et al., 2006). Argumentation has been identified as a mechanism for conceptual change (Mercer et al., 2004). Even with several educational initiatives promoting and supporting the use of argumentation as an instructional practice, teachers often struggle to implement argumentation in the classroom (Sampson & Blanchard, 2012). To remedy both issues above, we have designed an innovative methods course to provide background in climate change knowledge and argumentation instruction. In our methods course, we utilize Climate Science Investigations (CSI), an online, interactive series of modules and teaching resources funded by a NASA grant to support teachers learning about the basic science concepts underlying climate change. A key assignment is to develop and present an evidence-based scientific argument. The teachers were assigned a typical question and claim of climate skeptics and asked to conduct research on the scientific findings to prepare a counter-argument (rebuttal). This study examined changes in 60 preservice teachers' knowledge and perceptions about climate change after participation in the course. The teachers' understanding of fundamental concepts increased significantly. Their perceptions about climate change became more aligned to those of climate scientists. Findings suggest that scientific argumentation can play an effective role in the preparation of science educators. In addition to reporting findings in more detail, methods course activities, particularly in argumentation, will be shared in our presentation.

  10. Improving Student Understanding of Magmatic Differentiation Using an M&M Magma Chamber

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wirth, K. R.

    2003-12-01

    Many students, especially those in introductory geology courses, have difficulty developing a deep understanding of the processes of magmatic differentiation. In particular, students often struggle to understand Bowen's reaction series and fractional crystallization. The process of fractional crystallization by gravity settling can be illustrated using a model magma chamber consisting of M&M's. In this model, each major cation (e.g., Si, Ti, Al, Fe, Mg, Ca, Na, K) is represented by a different color M&M; other kinds of differently colored or shaped pieces could also be used. Appropriate numbers of each color M&M are combined to approximate the cation proportions of a basaltic magma. Students then fractionate the magma by moving M&M's to the bottom of the magma chamber forming a series of cumulus layers; the M&M's are removed in the stoichiometric proportions of cations in the crystallizing minerals (e.g., olivine, pyroxene, feldspars, quartz, magnetite, ilmenite). Students observe the changing cation composition (proportions of colors of M&M's) in the cumulus layers and in the magma chamber and graph the results using spreadsheet software. More advanced students (e.g., petrology course) can classify the cumulates and resulting liquid after each crystallization step, and they can compare the model system with natural magmatic systems (e.g., absence of important fractionating phases, volatiles). Students who have completed this exercise generally indicate a positive experience and demonstrate increased understanding of Bowen's reaction series and fractionation processes. They also exhibit greater familiarity with mineral stoichiometry, classification, solid-solution in minerals, element behavior (e.g., incompatibility), and chemical variation diagrams. Other models (e.g., paths of equilibrium and fractional crystallization on phase diagrams) can also be used to illustrate differentiation processes in upper level courses (e.g., mineralogy and petrology).

  11. Improving pharmacy students' understanding and long-term retention of acid-base chemistry.

    PubMed

    Roche, Victoria F

    2007-12-15

    Despite repeated exposure to the principles underlying the behavior of organic acids and bases in aqueous solution, some pharmacy students remain confused about the topic of acid-base chemistry. Since a majority of organic drug molecules have acid-base character, the ability to predict their reactivity and the extent to which they will ionize in a given medium is paramount to students' understanding of essentially all aspects of drug action in vivo and in vitro. This manuscript presents a medicinal chemistry lesson in the fundamentals of acid-base chemistry that many pharmacy students have found enlightening and clarifying.

  12. Improving Pharmacy Students' Understanding and Long-term Retention of Acid-Base Chemistry

    PubMed Central

    2007-01-01

    Despite repeated exposure to the principles underlying the behavior of organic acids and bases in aqueous solution, some pharmacy students remain confused about the topic of acid-base chemistry. Since a majority of organic drug molecules have acid-base character, the ability to predict their reactivity and the extent to which they will ionize in a given medium is paramount to students' understanding of essentially all aspects of drug action in vivo and in vitro. This manuscript presents a medicinal chemistry lesson in the fundamentals of acid-base chemistry that many pharmacy students have found enlightening and clarifying PMID:19503706

  13. Improving our understanding of environmental controls on the distribution of C3 and C4 grasses.

    PubMed

    Pau, Stephanie; Edwards, Erika J; Still, Christopher J

    2013-01-01

    A number of studies have demonstrated the ecological sorting of C3 and C4 grasses along temperature and moisture gradients. However, previous studies of C3 and C4 grass biogeography have often inadvertently compared species in different and relatively unrelated lineages, which are associated with different environmental settings and distinct adaptive traits. Such confounded comparisons of C3 and C4 grasses may bias our understanding of ecological sorting imposed strictly by photosynthetic pathway. Here, we used MaxEnt species distribution modeling in combination with satellite data to understand the functional diversity of C3 and C4 grasses by comparing both large clades and closely related sister taxa. Similar to previous work, we found that C4 grasses showed a preference for regions with higher temperatures and lower precipitation compared with grasses using the C3 pathway. However, air temperature differences were smaller (2 °C vs. 4 °C) and precipitation and % tree cover differences were larger (1783 mm vs. 755 mm, 21.3% vs. 7.7%, respectively) when comparing C3 and C4 grasses within the same clade vs. comparing all C4 and all C3 grasses (i.e., ignoring phylogenetic structure). These results were due to important differences in the environmental preferences of C3 BEP and PACMAD clades (the two main grass clades). Winter precipitation was found to be more important for understanding the distribution and environmental niche of C3 PACMADs in comparison with both C3 BEPs and C4 taxa, for which temperature was much more important. Results comparing closely related C3 -C4 sister taxa supported the patterns derived from our modeling of the larger clade groupings. Our findings, which are novel in comparing the distribution and niches of clades, demonstrate that the evolutionary history of taxa is important for understanding the functional diversity of C3 and C4 grasses, and should have implications for how grasslands will respond to global change.

  14. Anatomy of Teaching Anatomy: Do Prosected Cross Sections Improve Students Understanding of Spatial and Radiological Anatomy?

    PubMed Central

    Vithoosan, S.; Kokulan, S.; Dissanayake, M. M.; Dissanayake, Vajira; Jayasekara, Rohan

    2016-01-01

    Introduction. Cadaveric dissections and prosections have traditionally been part of undergraduate medical teaching. Materials and Methods. Hundred and fifty-nine first-year students in the Faculty of Medicine, University of Colombo, were invited to participate in the above study. Students were randomly allocated to two age and gender matched groups. Both groups were exposed to identical series of lectures regarding anatomy of the abdomen and conventional cadaveric prosections of the abdomen. The test group (n = 77, 48.4%) was also exposed to cadaveric cross-sectional slices of the abdomen to which the control group (n = 82, 51.6%) was blinded. At the end of the teaching session both groups were assessed by using their performance in a timed multiple choice question paper as well as ability to identify structures in abdominal CT films. Results. Scores for spatial and radiological anatomy were significantly higher among the test group when compared with the control group (P < 0.05, CI 95%). Majority of the students in both control and test groups agreed that cadaveric cross section may be useful for them to understand spatial and radiological anatomy. Conclusion. Introduction of cadaveric cross-sectional prosections may help students to understand spatial and radiological anatomy better. PMID:27579181

  15. How evolutionary principles improve the understanding of human health and disease

    PubMed Central

    Gluckman, Peter D; Low, Felicia M; Buklijas, Tatjana; Hanson, Mark A; Beedle, Alan S

    2011-01-01

    An appreciation of the fundamental principles of evolutionary biology provides new insights into major diseases and enables an integrated understanding of human biology and medicine. However, there is a lack of awareness of their importance amongst physicians, medical researchers, and educators, all of whom tend to focus on the mechanistic (proximate) basis for disease, excluding consideration of evolutionary (ultimate) reasons. The key principles of evolutionary medicine are that selection acts on fitness, not health or longevity; that our evolutionary history does not cause disease, but rather impacts on our risk of disease in particular environments; and that we are now living in novel environments compared to those in which we evolved. We consider these evolutionary principles in conjunction with population genetics and describe several pathways by which evolutionary processes can affect disease risk. These perspectives provide a more cohesive framework for gaining insights into the determinants of health and disease. Coupled with complementary insights offered by advances in genomic, epigenetic, and developmental biology research, evolutionary perspectives offer an important addition to understanding disease. Further, there are a number of aspects of evolutionary medicine that can add considerably to studies in other domains of contemporary evolutionary studies. PMID:25567971

  16. POST-TRAUMATIC OSTEOARTHRITIS: IMPROVED UNDERSTANDING AND OPPORTUNITIES FOR EARLY INTERVENTION†

    PubMed Central

    Anderson, Donald D.; Chubinskaya, Susan; Guilak, Farshid; Martin, James A.; Oegema, Theodore R.; Olson, Steven A.; Buckwalter, Joseph A.

    2011-01-01

    Even with current treatments of acute joint injuries, more than 40% of people who suffer significant ligament or meniscus tears, or articular surface injuries, will develop osteoarthritis. Correspondingly, 12% or more of all patients with lower extremity osteoarthritis have a history of joint injury. Recent research suggests that acute joint damage that occurs at the time of an injury initiates a sequence of events that can lead to progressive articular surface damage. New molecular interventions, combined with evolving surgical methods, aim to minimize or prevent progressive tissue damage triggered by joint injury. Seizing the potential for progress in the treatment of joint injuries to forestall OA will depend on advances in: (1) quantitative methods of assessing the injury severity, including both structural damage and biologic responses, (2) understanding of the pathogenesis of post-traumatic OA, taking into account potential interactions among the different tissues and the role of post-traumatic incongruity and instability, and (3) application of engineering and molecular research to develop new methods of treating injured joints. This paper highlights recent advances in understanding of the structural damage and the acute biological response following joint injury, and it identifies important directions for future research. PMID:21520254

  17. Understanding How the "Open" of Open Source Software (OSS) Will Improve Global Health Security.

    PubMed

    Hahn, Erin; Blazes, David; Lewis, Sheri

    2016-01-01

    Improving global health security will require bold action in all corners of the world, particularly in developing settings, where poverty often contributes to an increase in emerging infectious diseases. In order to mitigate the impact of emerging pandemic threats, enhanced disease surveillance is needed to improve early detection and rapid response to outbreaks. However, the technology to facilitate this surveillance is often unattainable because of high costs, software and hardware maintenance needs, limited technical competence among public health officials, and internet connectivity challenges experienced in the field. One potential solution is to leverage open source software, a concept that is unfortunately often misunderstood. This article describes the principles and characteristics of open source software and how it may be applied to solve global health security challenges.

  18. Conferences, tablecloths and cupboards: how to understand the situatedness of quality improvements in long-term care.

    PubMed

    Stoopendaal, Annemiek; Bal, Roland

    2013-02-01

    Long term care needs improvement, but still little is known how quality improvement works in practice. A better, in-depth, understanding of the content and complexities of quality improvement is necessary because of the still limited theoretical and empirical grounds underlying its approach. This article draws on empirical material from Care for Better, a national quality improvement collaborative (QIC) for the long-term care sector in the Netherlands that took place from 2005 until 2012. Following a project on prevention of malnutrition, we analyzed the complex and ongoing processes of embedding improvements. The guiding question for our research was: what must be accomplished to enable and sustain improvements to occur in the everyday life of care organizations? In our analysis, we linked ethnographic findings to Actor Network Theory. We found that different kinds of work had to be done by both human and non-human actors to displace improvements into specific organizational situations. We conceptualized this work as the activity of translation. Moreover, the concept of inscription offers a perspective to reveal how improvements are made durable. Inscriptions are translations of values into texts, behavior or materialities that steer action in a specific way. We analyzed three different modes of inscription: gathering, materializing and training. We analyzed how one specific value, patient choice, became inscribed in different ways, configuring the actors in specific ways, with diverging consequences for how patient choice comes about.

  19. The National Kidney Disease Education Program: improving understanding, detection, and management of CKD.

    PubMed

    Narva, Andrew S; Briggs, Michael

    2009-03-01

    The National Kidney Disease Education Program (NKDEP), an initiative of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, works to reduce the morbidity and mortality caused by chronic kidney disease (CKD) and its complications. Established in 2000, the NKDEP initially focused on increasing awareness in at-risk populations and helping the laboratory community recalibrate serum creatinine measurement methods and begin using a revised equation to estimate glomerular filtration rate. Expanding its focus in recent years, the NKDEP now works to improve provider practices by collaborating with health systems, community health centers, and professional associations to encourage testing and treatment of patients. Among its top priorities is to develop such resources as clinical encounter tools, patient education aids, and training programs that help primary care professionals better identify and care for patients with CKD. Other priorities include improving the coordination of federal responses to CKD and addressing the standardization of measurement and reporting of urine albumin. Improving CKD detection and management is an important challenge. To succeed, the NKDEP must work in close partnership with the renal community, public health agencies, professional associations, and voluntary organizations that serve at-risk and patient communities.

  20. Can hierarchical modeling improve our understanding of bovine abortion due to Neospora caninum infection?

    PubMed

    Martinez, Brayan Alexander Fonseca; Leotti, Vanessa Bielefeldt; Borba, Mauro Riegert; Silva, Gustavo de Sousa E; Corbellini, Luís Gustavo

    2017-04-15

    The purpose of this study was to use mixed logistic regression to evaluate the association between Neospora caninum serostatus and abortion, accounting for the effects of farms. The main objective was to explore the interpretation of this model and discuss the contribution of this analysis to our understanding of the disease's epidemiology. A mixed-effects logistic model using farms as a random effect and the serostatus for N. caninum, age of cattle and farm location as fixed effects was performed. The data from 1256 cows over 15 months of age from 60 farms were used, and the abortion information was obtained from farm records. A significant association between N. caninum serostatus and abortion was found (p<0.0001). Seropositive cows had 6.63 times greater odds of having a history of previous abortion (95% CI: 4.35-13.37). There was remarkable variability across farms in the probability of a cow having a history of an abortion. Including the effects of the farms in the regression, it was possible to estimate an intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC) of 16%. That means that 16% of the variation in abortion occurrence that was not explained by the fixed effects was due to farms. In practical terms, this variation means that while there are farms with several seropositive cows and no/few abortion cases, the opposite is also true, with a high number of abortions in farms with low/medium seroprevalence. The remaining variability (84%) was not explained by the effect of N. caninum, age, region, and the effect of farms, i.e., it is due to unknown factors that are causing abortions. The results of this study reinforce the importance of N. caninum as a cause of abortions and demonstrate the significant heterogeneity in the probability of a cow having a history of an abortion that cannot be explained completely by N. caninum serostatus, age or location. Including the hierarchical structure of the population along with correct interpretation of the model estimates helps us

  1. a Radiocarbon Database for Improved Understanding of Global Soil Carbon Dynamics: Part II

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trumbore, S.; Torn, M. S.; Sierra, C. A.; Smith, L. J.; Nave, L. E.; Workshop Paritipants, R.

    2011-12-01

    We report results of a workshop to initiate a global database of radiocarbon measurements in soil and other ecosystem compartments. Radiocarbon provides critical information for understanding the rate of exchange of soil carbon with the atmosphere and hydrosphere. For example, radiocarbon has been used to demonstrate the importance of short range order minerals in stabilizing organic carbon on millennial timescales in some soils. On decadal to centennial timescales, the infiltration of 'bomb' radiocarbon provides a measure of the amount and nature of soil carbon that responds on the timescale of most human impacts. The radiocarbon sigature of chemically or physically fractionated soil, or even in specific organic compounds, can yield clues as to controls on organic matter cycling on a range of timescales. Radiocarbon in microbial biomass or respiration can be a sensitive indicator of shifts in substrate use with vegetation, nutrient availability or temperature change. Taken toghether, such measurements can provide critical tests for models of soil carbon dynamics, while patterns in soil C dynamics with edaphic factors can be used to help parameterize models at spatial scales ranging from profile to landscape to global. The advent and proliferation of accelerator mass spectrometry since the early 1990s has vastly increased the number of radiocarbon analyses carried out in soils. However, these studies have usually been carried out by individual investigators within specific sites or regions, and to date the results have not been assembled, interpreted or compared at larger spatial scales. Given the expense of radiocarbon measurements, and the need for global synthesis products to evaluate and/or develop models of soil carbon response to climate and land use changes across a range of spatial scales, our goals are to: (1) bring together in one place existing radiocarbon measurements and provide a continuing common repository for new analyses; (2) supply ancillary

  2. On the Concept of Force: How Understanding its History can Improve Physics Teaching

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coelho, Ricardo Lopes

    2010-01-01

    Some physicists have pointed out that we do not know what force is. The most common definition of force in textbooks has been criticized for more than two centuries. Many studies have shown that the concept of force is a problem for teaching. How to conceive force on the basis of the concepts and criticism of force in the works of Newton, Euler, d’Alembert, Lagrange, Lazare Carnot, Saint-Venant, Reech, Kirchhoff, Mach, Hertz and Poincaré is the question of the present article. This part of the article is followed by an overview of definitions of force in contemporary textbooks. In the next part, an answer to the question is given: how to understand force within the framework of the laws of motion and in applications. Finally, some educational implications are considered.

  3. Using epigenomic studies in monozygotic twins to improve our understanding of cancer.

    PubMed

    Roos, Leonie; Spector, Timothy D; Bell, Christopher G

    2014-06-01

    Cancer is a set of diseases that exhibit not only genetic mutations but also a profoundly distorted epigenetic landscape. Over the last two decades, great advances have been made in identifying these alterations and their importance in the initiation and progression of cancer. Epigenetic changes can be seen from the very early stages in tumorigenesis and dysregulation of the epigenome has an increasingly acknowledged pathogenic role. Epigenomic twin studies have great potential to contribute to our understanding of complex diseases, such as cancer. This is because the use of monozygotic twins discordant for cancer enables epigenetic variation analysis without the confounding influence of the constitutive genetic background, age or cohort effects. It therefore allows the identification of susceptibility loci that may be sensitive to modification by the environment. These studies into cancer etiology will potentially lead to robust epigenetic markers for the detection and risk assessment of cancer.

  4. Integrating flux, satellite, and proximal optical data for an improved understanding of ecosystem carbon uptake

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gamon, J. A.; Huemmrich, K. F.; Garrity, S. R.

    2015-12-01

    The different scales and methods of satellite observations and flux measurements present challenges for data integration that can be partly addressed by the addition of scale-appropriate optical sampling. Proximal optical measurement facilitates experimental approaches that can inform upscaling, satellite validation, and lead to better understanding of controls on carbon fluxes and other ecosystem processes. Using the framework of the light-use efficiency model, this presentation will review efforts to explore the controls on ecosystem-atmosphere carbon fluxes using a variety of novel optical sensors and platforms. Topics of appropriate sampling methodology, scaling and data aggregation will also be considered, with examples of how information content and interpretation of optical data can be scale-dependent. Key challenges include informatics solutions that handle large, multi-dimensional data volumes and contextual information, including information about sampling protocols and scale. Key opportunities include the assessment of vegetation functional diversity with optical sensors.

  5. MoFlow: visualizing conformational changes in molecules as molecular flow improves understanding

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Background Current visualizations of molecular motion use a Timeline-analogous representation that conveys "first the molecule was shaped like this, then like this...". This scheme is orthogonal to the Pathline-like human understanding of motion "this part of the molecule moved from here to here along this path". We present MoFlow, a system for visualizing molecular motion using a Pathline-analogous representation. Results The MoFlow system produces high-quality renderings of molecular motion as atom pathlines, as well as interactive WebGL visualizations, and 3D printable models. In a preliminary user study, MoFlow representations are shown to be superior to canonical representations for conveying molecular motion. Conclusions Pathline-based representations of molecular motion are more easily understood than timeline representations. Pathline representations provide other advantages because they represent motion directly, rather than representing structure with inferred motion. PMID:26361501

  6. Understanding the systemic nature of cities to improve health and climate change mitigation.

    PubMed

    Chapman, Ralph; Howden-Chapman, Philippa; Capon, Anthony

    2016-09-01

    Understanding cities comprehensively as systems is a costly challenge and is typically not feasible for policy makers. Nevertheless, focusing on some key systemic characteristics of cities can give useful insights for policy to advance health and well-being outcomes. Moreover, if we take a coevolutionary systems view of cities, some conventional assumptions about the nature of urban development (e.g. the growth in private vehicle use with income) may not stand up. We illustrate this by examining the coevolution of urban transport and land use systems, and institutional change, giving examples of policy implications. At a high level, our concern derives from the need to better understand the dynamics of urban change, and its implications for health and well-being. At a practical level, we see opportunities to use stylised findings about urban systems to underpin policy experiments. While it is now not uncommon to view cities as systems, policy makers appear to have made little use so far of a systems approach to inform choice of policies with consequences for health and well-being. System insights can be applied to intelligently anticipate change - for example, as cities are subjected to increasing natural system reactions to climate change, they must find ways to mitigate and adapt to it. Secondly, systems insights around policy cobenefits are vital for better informing horizontal policy integration. Lastly, an implication of system complexity is that rather than seeking detailed, 'full' knowledge about urban issues and policies, cities would be well advised to engage in policy experimentation to address increasingly urgent health and climate change issues.

  7. Terrain Analysis for Human-Robot Interaction (TAH-RI): Enabling Terrain Understanding to Improve Tactical Behavior

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2005-04-01

    Contractor Report 2005-04 Terrain Analysis for Human-Robot Interaction (TAH-RI): Enabling Terrain Understanding to Improve Tactical Behavior Jim...Hicinbothom, Dawn Riddle, Ken Graves CHI Systems, Inc. Robin Murphy University of South Florida This report is published to meet legal and contractual...for the Behavioral and Social Sciences Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited REPORT DOCUMENTATION PAGE 1. REPORT DATE (dd-mm-yy) 2

  8. Neurofeedback as an Intervention to Improve Reading Achievement in Students with Attention- Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, Inattentive Subtype

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    La Marca, Jeffry P.; O'Connor, Rollanda E.

    2016-01-01

    Research consistently demonstrates that attention deficits have a deleterious effect on academic achievement. Impairments in attention, and not hyperactivity/impulsivity, are associated with learning difficulties and academic problems in students with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). To date, most studies have focused on symptoms…

  9. Improving Mathematics and Science Education: A Longitudinal Investigation of the Relationship between Reform-Oriented Instruction and Student Achievement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Le,Vi-Nhuan; Stecher, Brian M.; Lockwood, J. R.; Hamilton, Laura S.; Robyn, Abby; Williams, Valerie L.; Ryan, Gery; Kerr, Kerri A.; Martinez, Jose Felipe; Klein, Stephen P.

    2006-01-01

    This monograph presents the findings of a multiyear study of the effectiveness of reform-oriented mathematics and science instruction. It builds on an earlier RAND study, called the Mosaic project, which found "a weak but positive relationship" between reform practices and student achievement (see Klein, Hamilton, McCaffrey, Stecher,…

  10. The Effects of Individualized Instruction on the Improvement of Self Concept of Low Achieving Primary Grade Urban Children.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Forte, Edmund J.

    This dissertation investigates the effect of an individualized remedial reading and mathematics program (the Philadelphia Checkpoint Center Program) on the self concept of low achieving third-grade children. In the program, children received individualized, diagnostic and prescriptive instruction for 40 minutes daily in groups of 15 or fewer. In…

  11. Raising the Bar -- Closing the Gap. Recommendations for Improving the Academic Achievement of African-American Students in Missouri.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Missouri State Dept. of Elementary and Secondary Education, Jefferson City.

    In September 1996, the Missouri Commissioner of Education appointed a statewide task force on the Achievement of African-American Students. The findings of the state-level task force, the views of Missouri students, and the experience of successful educators all support the conclusion that the single most important nontangible element required to…

  12. The Path to Math: Leadership Matters Effective Practices of Principals That Improve Student Achievement in Secondary Mathematics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pyo, Michelle Hyo Jung

    2013-01-01

    The quality of school leadership is linked to student academic achievement (Leithwood et al., 2004; Thompson & Barnes, 2007; Glatthorn & Jailall, 1997; Lezotte, 1991; Edmonds, 1979; Hallinger & Heck, 1996; Crum & Sherman, 2008). The purpose of this study was to examine the instructional leadership (IL) of high school principals and…

  13. The Potential for School-Based Interventions That Target Executive Function to Improve Academic Achievement: A Review

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jacob, Robin; Parkinson, Julia

    2015-01-01

    This article systematically reviews what is known empirically about the association between executive function and student achievement in both reading and math and critically assesses the evidence for a causal association between the two. Using meta-analytic techniques, the review finds that there is a moderate unconditional association between…

  14. From Compliance to Service: Evolving the State Role to Support District Data Efforts to Improve Student Achievement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shah, Rebecca

    2011-01-01

    As a result of state, national and federal leadership and political will, states have dramatically increased their capacity to collect robust longitudinal education data. However, without an equally ambitious effort to ensure access and build stakeholders' capacity to use data to increase student achievement, these infrastructure investments…

  15. An Augmented Reality-Based Mobile Learning System to Improve Students' Learning Achievements and Motivations in Natural Science Inquiry Activities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chiang, Tosti H. C.; Yang, Stephen J. H.; Hwang, Gwo-Jen

    2014-01-01

    In this study, an augmented reality-based mobile learning system is proposed for conducting inquiry-based learning activities. An experiment has been conducted to examine the effectiveness of the proposed approach in terms of learning achievements and motivations. The subjects were 57 fourth graders from two classes taught by the same teacher in…

  16. In Their Own Words: Erasing Deficits and Exploring What Works to Improve K-12 and Postsecondary Black Male School Achievement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Warren, Chezare A.; Douglas, Ty-Ron M. O.; Howard, Tyrone C.

    2016-01-01

    This article outlines the imperative for strengths-based research to counter deficit perceptions and perspectives of Black males in contemporary discussions of their school achievement in the United States. The importance of young men of color in shaping research agendas, practice, and public policy is argued followed by a brief overview of the…

  17. Improving Achievement and Attitudes in Elementary Algebra through Written Error-Correcting Feedback and Free Comments on Tests.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Prueher, Jane

    The purpose of this study was to investigate the extent to which written error-correcting feedback on teacher-made criterion-referenced tests results in increased achievement of high school students taking algebra. In addition, student attitudes toward chapter tests and changes that may occur in those attitudes resulting from teacher treatment of…

  18. Towards understanding the improved stability of palladium supported on TS-1 for catalytic combustion.

    PubMed

    Setiawan, Adi; Friggieri, Jarrod; Hosseiniamoli, Hadi; Kennedy, Eric M; Dlugogorski, Bogdan Z; Adesina, Adesoji A; Stockenhuber, Michael

    2016-04-21

    A novel Pd supported on TS-1 combustion catalyst was synthesized and tested in methane combustion under very lean and under highly humid conditions (<1%). A notable increase in hydrothermal stability was observed over 1900 h time-on-stream experiments, where an almost constant, steady state activity obtaining 90% methane conversion was achieved below 500 °C. Surface oxygen mobility and coverage plays a major role in the activity and stability of the lean methane combustion in the presence of large excess of water vapour. We identified water adsorption and in turn the hydrophobicity of the catalyst support as the major factor influencing the long term stability of combustion catalysts. While Pd/Al2O3 catalyst shows a higher turn-over frequency than that of Pd/TS-1 catalyst, the situation reversed after ca. 1900 h on stream. Two linear regions, with different activation energies in the Arrhenius plot for the equilibrium Pd/TS-1 catalyst, were observed. The conclusions were supported by catalyst characterization using H2-chemisorption, TPD, XPS analyses as well as N2-adsorption-desorption, XRD, SEM, TEM. The hydrophobicity and competitive adsorption of water with oxygen is suggested to influence oxygen surface coverage and in turn the apparent activation energy for the oxidation reaction.

  19. An Active Vision Approach to Understanding and Improving Visual Training in the Geosciences

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Voronov, J.; Tarduno, J. A.; Jacobs, R. A.; Pelz, J. B.; Rosen, M. R.

    2009-12-01

    Experience in the field is a fundamental aspect of geologic training, and its effectiveness is largely unchallenged because of anecdotal evidence of its success among expert geologists. However, there have been only a few quantitative studies based on large data collection efforts to investigate how Earth Scientists learn in the field. In a recent collaboration between Earth scientists, Cognitive scientists and experts in Imaging science at the University of Rochester and Rochester Institute of Technology, we are investigating such a study. Within Cognitive Science, one school of thought, referred to as the Active Vision approach, emphasizes that visual perception is an active process requiring us to move our eyes to acquire new information about our environment. The Active Vision approach indicates the perceptual skills which experts possess and which novices will need to acquire to achieve expert performance. We describe data collection efforts using portable eye-trackers to assess how novice and expert geologists acquire visual knowledge in the field. We also discuss our efforts to collect images for use in a semi-immersive classroom environment, useful for further testing of novices and experts using eye-tracking technologies.

  20. Understanding the improved stability of hybrid polymer solar cells fabricated with copper electrodes.

    PubMed

    Reeja-Jayan, B; Manthiram, Arumugam

    2011-05-01

    It is known that atmospheric oxygen is essential for realizing the photovoltaic properties of P3HT-TiO₂-based hybrid polymer solar cells because oxygen vacancies created in TiO₂ can become recombination sites for charge carriers, causing photovoltaic properties like open-circuit voltage (V(oc)) to decline quickly in an inert atmosphere. We demonstrate here that using an annealed Cu layer as hole collecting electrode results in a remarkably stable hybrid solar cell that maintains its photovoltaic parameters during 1 h of continuous testing in an inert atmosphere. An analysis of the data from photovoltaic device performance tests and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) attributes this improvement to the tendency of Cu to form sulfide-like complexes with the S atoms on P3HT, thereby inducing a chemically driven vertical segregation of P3HT toward the hole-collecting metal electrode. Additionally, XPS depth profiling analysis shows that Cu atoms can diffuse up to the TiO₂ layer and assist in filling up oxygen vacancies on the TiO₂ surface, thus eliminating defects that can act as donors of free electrons and degrade photovoltaic performance in an inert atmosphere. We analyze these improvements by examining in situ the effect of Cu on the P3HT and TiO₂ layers and on the organic-inorganic interface formed between them inside a hybrid solar cell.

  1. Using the Astronomy Diagnostic Test to Identify Teaching Strategies that Improve Conceptual Understanding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deming, G. L.; Hufnagel, B.

    2002-05-01

    The Astronomy Diagnostic Test (ADT) was developed in order to assess learning in undergraduate introductory astronomy classes, but an underlying goal was to use the information supplied by the ADT to improve student learning. The ADT National Project collected pre-course (5346 students) and post-course (3842 students) test results from 97 classes at a variety of institutions in 31 states. These results have been compiled in an extensive database. The overall gain between pre-course and post-course average scores amounts to a disappointing 15%, but significant gains are identifiable for specific questions in individual classes. Results from the ADT National Project database will be presented for specific questions with minimal gains. Astronomy education researchers in Maryland are beginning to use ADT results to identify minimal gain concepts and then to modify and assess instructional strategies with the goal of improving student learning. A comparison will be made between ADT pre-course and post-course responses for several classes in which different teaching methods were used. Successful teaching strategies applicable in a variety of class settings will be offered and instructors are encouraged to become involved in assessing results in their own introductory astronomy classes. This research was supported by the National Science Foundation through grant REC-0089239.

  2. Improving the understanding and diagnosis of Earth system changes in cold regions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lettenmaier, D. P.

    2015-12-01

    I review key hydrological state variables and fluxes relevant to cold regions, specifically snow, permafrost and seasonally frozen soils, lakes, and wetlands, and comment on the ability of current models to represent the associated processes, and the quality of the data sets upon which model development and diagnosis efforts rest. Although snow processes are relatively well represented in current generation land surface models, at least at large scales for deep mountain snowpacks, the representation of high latitude snow processes remain complicated by the role of snow redistribution, and of sublimation during the shoulder (especially spring) season. Most credible land surface models now include representations of permafrost, some of which perform well when forced with local climate data; however their performance over large areas is limited by spatial variability of key processes, including soil thermal characteristics. Likewise, many land surface models now represent the hydrology and energetics of lakes, which cover a substantial portion of the landscape in many high latitude environs. However, accurate representation of lakes requires knowledge of certain characteristics of their bathymetry and hydrological connectivity, information which is not always available. Likewise, the representation of wetlands in models, although improved in many cases, is limited by topography (and the role of microtopography, even at large scales). Nonetheless, increased attention to high latitude hydrological processes has demonstrably improved the fidelity of land surface representations over the last decade or so.

  3. Manipulating Light to Understand and Improve Solar Cells (494th Brookhaven Lecture)

    SciTech Connect

    Eisaman, Matthew

    2014-04-16

    Energy consumption around the world is projected to approximately triple by the end of the century, according to the 2005 Report from the U.S. Department of Energy's Basic Energy Sciences Workshop on Solar Energy Utilization. Much will change in those next 86 years, but for all the power the world needs—for everything from manufacturing and transportation to air conditioning and charging cell phone batteries—improved solar cells will be crucial to meet this future energy demand with renewable energy sources. At Brookhaven Lab, scientists are probing solar cells and exploring variations within the cells—variations that are so small they are measured in billionths of a meter—in order to make increasingly efficient solar cells and ultimately help reduce the overall costs of deploying solar power plants. Dr. Eisaman will discuss DOE's Sunshot Initiative, which aims to reduce the cost of solar cell-generated electricity by 2020. He will also discuss how he and collaborators at Brookhaven Lab are probing different material compositions within solar cells, measuring how efficiently they collect electrical charge, helping to develop a new class of solar cells, and improving solar-cell manufacturing processes.

  4. Understanding Low-cycle Fatigue Life Improvement Mechanisms in a Pre-twinned Magnesium Alloy

    SciTech Connect

    Wu, Wei; An, Ke

    2015-10-03

    The mechanisms of fatigue life improvement by pre-twinning process in a commercial rolled magnesium (Mg) alloy have been investigated using real-time in situ neutron diffraction under a continuous-loading condition. It is found that by introducing the excess twinned grains through pre-compression along the rolling direction the fatigue life was enhanced approximately 50%, mainly resulting from the prolonged detwinning process and inhibited dislocation slip during reverse tension. Moreover, after pre-twinning process, the removal of the rapid strain hardening during reverse tension leads to a compressive mean stress value and more symmetric shape of stress-strain hysteresis loop. The pre-twinning has significant impacts on the twinning-detwinning characteristics and deformation modes during cyclic loading and greatly facilitates the twinning-detwinning activities in plastic deformation. The cyclic straining leads to the increase of contribution of tensile twinning deformation in overall plastic deformation in both the as-received and pre-deformed sample. The mechanisms of load partitioning in different groups of grains are closely related to the deformation modes in each deformation stage, while the fatigue cycling has little influence on the load sharing. The pre-twinning process provides an easy and cost-effective route to improve the low-cycle fatigue life through manufacturing and processing, which would advance the wide application of light-weight wrought Mg alloys as structural materials.

  5. Understanding Low-cycle Fatigue Life Improvement Mechanisms in a Pre-twinned Magnesium Alloy

    DOE PAGES

    Wu, Wei; An, Ke

    2015-10-03

    The mechanisms of fatigue life improvement by pre-twinning process in a commercial rolled magnesium (Mg) alloy have been investigated using real-time in situ neutron diffraction under a continuous-loading condition. It is found that by introducing the excess twinned grains through pre-compression along the rolling direction the fatigue life was enhanced approximately 50%, mainly resulting from the prolonged detwinning process and inhibited dislocation slip during reverse tension. Moreover, after pre-twinning process, the removal of the rapid strain hardening during reverse tension leads to a compressive mean stress value and more symmetric shape of stress-strain hysteresis loop. The pre-twinning has significant impactsmore » on the twinning-detwinning characteristics and deformation modes during cyclic loading and greatly facilitates the twinning-detwinning activities in plastic deformation. The cyclic straining leads to the increase of contribution of tensile twinning deformation in overall plastic deformation in both the as-received and pre-deformed sample. The mechanisms of load partitioning in different groups of grains are closely related to the deformation modes in each deformation stage, while the fatigue cycling has little influence on the load sharing. The pre-twinning process provides an easy and cost-effective route to improve the low-cycle fatigue life through manufacturing and processing, which would advance the wide application of light-weight wrought Mg alloys as structural materials.« less

  6. A Mixed-Methods Study of the Transformation Model for Rapid Improvement of Low Achieving Rural Schools

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Atkinson Duina, Angela

    2013-01-01

    New regulations attached to ARRA funding of federal School Improvement Fund grants aimed at producing rapid turnaround of low performing schools were highly criticized as unsuitable for rural schools. This mixed-methods study looked at the implementation of the School Improvement Fund Transformation Model in two rural Maine high schools during the…

  7. What Works to Improve Student Literacy Achievement? An Examination of Instructional Practices in a Balanced Literacy Approach

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bitter, Catherine; O'Day, Jennifer; Gubbins, Paul; Socias, Miguel

    2009-01-01

    A core assumption of the San Diego City Schools (SDCS) reform effort was that improved instructional practices, aligned with a balanced literacy approach, would be effective in improving student outcomes. This article explores this hypothesis by presenting findings from an analysis of classroom instruction data collected in 101 classrooms in 9…

  8. Towards an improved understanding of deep convection patterns over the tropical oceans

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Back, Larissa

    We quantitatively assess thermodynamic characteristics shared by deep convection over the tropical oceans, and develop a simple model to explain the observed precipitation distribution, as well as geographic variability in the vertical development of deep convection. Relationships between humidity, surface wind speed and precipitation are analyzed using four years of daily satellite passive microwave retrievals. We find that throughout the ITCZ, at high-column relative humidities (conditions under which deep convection is likely to occur), faster winds are associated with substantially more precipitation, explaining a small, but highly statistically significant fraction of daily rainfall variability. The observed increases in precipitation are much greater than evaporation changes associated with the increased wind speed which suggests a convergence feedback. Several atmospheric reanalyses are used to compute daily column-integrated MSE budgets, and seperate the MSE export by the circulation into horizontal and vertical MSE advection terms to examine the extent to which observationally-derived data is consistent with the idea of a positive gross moist stability. Primarily due to substantial geographic variability in vertical motion profiles (and latent heating), the implied gross moist stability is negative in a 2000-km region in the central-eastern Pacific ITCZ. In the west Pacific warm pool rainy regions, mean horizontal convergence extends above 400mb, while in parts of the Pacific ITCZ where meridional SST gradients are strong, the vertical motion profile is "bottom-heavy", with convergence below 800mb and divergence above. We examine what combination of local column thermodynamic and non-local dynamic reasoning can lead to a simple quantitative understanding of the similarities and differences between the convection in the narrow eastern-central Pacific ITCZ with that in the west Pacific warm pool. A simple dynamical boundary layer model is used to understand

  9. Achieving the Health Care Financing Administration limits by quality improvement and quality control. A real-world example.

    PubMed

    Engebretson, M J; Cembrowski, G S

    1992-07-01

    With the enactment of the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments of 1988 (CLIA 88), the federal government is now using proficiency testing as the primary indicator of laboratory quality. Laboratories with proficiency test failures are now at risk of a variety of harsh penalties including large monetary fines and suspension of operations. To minimize the risk of failed proficiency testing, we initiated a continuous quality improvement program in our general chemistry laboratory in conjunction with the use of a new survey-validated quality control product. This article describes the quality improvement program and our success in reducing the long-term random error in general chemistry. Despite our improvement program, significant analytical errors (greater than 30% of the CLIA limits) still exist in analytes measured by our chemistry analyzer. These errors are present in nearly the same analytes measured by other common chemistry analyzers indicating the need for improvement in their design and manufacture.

  10. Leveraging Conceptual Frameworks to Improve Students' Mental Organization of Astronomy Understanding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Slater, Timothy F.; Lee, K. M.

    2006-06-01

    Many different types of schematic diagrams are useful in helping students organize and internalize their developing understanding in introductory astronomy courses. These include Venn Diagrams, Flowcharts, Concept Maps, among others, which illustrate the relationships between astronomical objects and dynamic concepts. These conceptual framework diagrams have been incorporated into the NSF-funded ClassAction project. ClassAction is a collection of electronic materials designed to enhance the metacognitive skills of college and university introductory astronomy survey students by promoting interactive engagement and providing rapid feedback in a highly visual setting. The main effort is targeted at creating dynamic think-pair-share questions supported by simulations, animations, and visualizations to be projected in the lecture classroom. The infrastructure allows instructors to recast these questions into alternative forms based on their own pedagogical preferences and feedback from the class. The recourses can be easily selected from a FLASH computer database and are accompanied by outlines, graphics, and numerous simulations which the instructor can use to provide student feedback and, when necessary, remediation. ClassAction materials are publicly available online at URL: http://astro.unl.edu and is funded by NSF Grant #0404988.

  11. Your Planetarium: A Friend Indeed; or How to improve the public understanding of Science

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ratcliffe, Martin

    1995-05-01

    Astronomical research requires public funding, and thment on public support. The greatest contact between the public and astronomy occurs through the nationUs planetariums, and the staff of these facilities are frequently asked to com'ent on recent discoveries. It is in our best interest to use and support the work of planetariums as an already existing outlet, not only to build public support for research, but as a nationUs commitment to the greater public understanding o" science. AAS President Frank Shu notes in newsletter 74, "failure to prepare the general citizenry to face an increasingly complex technological future indeed puts the nation at risk". Indeed, the issue is an important one. The efforts of the Henry Buhl Jr. Planetarium in Pittsburgh to provide up-to-date, accurate information about current astronomical research, the collaborative effort between STScI and the Buhl Planetarium to produce a new planetarium show, Through the Eyes of Hubble, and future efforts for collaborative projects to present science in an informed, yet entertaining way will be presented, and reflect similar efforts of the entire planetarium communty. Following the presented papers, a discussion session will offer the opportunity to explore new links between the planetarium ommunity and the astronomical community. The ideas will be presented to the newly constituted Astronomy Education Policy Board of the AAS as part of the national astronomy education initiative.

  12. Toward an improved understanding of tropical forest carbon cycle feedbacks in the Earth's climate system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chambers, J. Q.

    2015-12-01

    There are large uncertainties regarding the response of tropical forest carbon cycling to expected global changes over the 21st Century. Whether tropical forests continue to act as large carbon sinks, or shift to become significant carbon sources, plays a major role in determining the rate and intensity of climate change impacts. Most terrestrial models predict a large current tropical forest carbon sink due to the effects of rising atmospheric CO2 on plant productivity. Yet the strength of this sink is likely limited by multiple factors, and the magnitudes of these constraints remain in question. As atmospheric CO2 levels continue to rise, nutrient limitations are likely to become more prominent, yet the current suite of Earth system models (ESMs) have inadequate representations of nutrient constraints on tropical forest productivity. Concurrently, the negative effects of rising temperatures and shifting precipitation patterns on plant production are expected to become more pronounced, likely driving reductions in tropical forest carbon assimilation and storage. In addition to these carbon-climate feedbacks, human land-use activities in the tropics result in both carbon sources from deforestation, and carbon sinks in secondary forests, both of which are also inadequately represented in ESMs. This talk will focus on recent advances in our understanding of these key carbon cycle processes, and explore several field research activities needed to advance ESM treatment of the underlying mechanisms.

  13. Understanding molecular mechanisms for improving phytoremediation of heavy metal-contaminated soils.

    PubMed

    Hong-Bo, Shao; Li-Ye, Chu; Cheng-Jiang, Ruan; Hua, Li; Dong-Gang, Guo; Wei-Xiang, Li

    2010-03-01

    Heavy metal pollution of soil is a significant environmental problem with a negative potential impact on human health and agriculture. Rhizosphere, as an important interface of soil and plants, plays a significant role in phytoremediation of contaminated soil by heavy metals, in which, microbial populations are known to affect heavy metal mobility and availability to the plant through release of chelating agents, acidification, phosphate solubilization and redox changes, and therefore, have potential to enhance phytoremediation processes. Phytoremediation strategies with appropriate heavy metal-adapted rhizobacteria or mycorrhizas have received more and more attention. In addition, some plants possess a range of potential mechanisms that may be involved in the detoxification of heavy metals, and they manage to survive under metal stresses. High tolerance to heavy metal toxicity could rely either on reduced uptake or increased plant internal sequestration, which is manifested by an interaction between a genotype and its environment.A coordinated network of molecular processes provides plants with multiple metal-detoxifying mechanisms and repair capabilities. The growing application of molecular genetic technologies has led to an increased understanding of mechanisms of heavy metal tolerance/accumulation in plants and, subsequently, many transgenic plants with increased heavy metal resistance, as well as increased uptake of heavy metals, have been developed for the purpose of phytoremediation. This article reviews advantages, possible mechanisms, current status and future direction of phytoremediation for heavy-metal-contaminated soils.

  14. Redox Proteomics and Platelet Activation: Understanding the Redox Proteome to Improve Platelet Quality for Transfusion

    PubMed Central

    Sonego, Giona; Abonnenc, Mélanie; Tissot, Jean-Daniel; Prudent, Michel; Lion, Niels

    2017-01-01

    Blood banks use pathogen inactivation (PI) technologies to increase the safety of platelet concentrates (PCs). The characteristics of PI-treated PCs slightly differ from those of untreated PCs, but the underlying reasons are not well understood. One possible cause is the generation of oxidative stress during the PI process. This is of great interest since reactive oxygen species (ROS) act as second messengers in platelet functions. Furthermore, there are links between protein oxidation and phosphorylation, another mechanism that is critical for cell regulation. Current research efforts focus on understanding the underlying mechanisms and identifying new target proteins. Proteomics technologies represent powerful tools for investigating signaling pathways involving ROS and post-translational modifications such as phosphorylation, while quantitative techniques enable the comparison of the platelet resting state versus the stimulated state. In particular, redox cysteine is a key player in platelet activation upon stimulation by different agonists. This review highlights the experiments that have provided insights into the roles of ROS in platelet function and the implications for platelet transfusion, and potentially in diseases such as inflammation and platelet hyperactivity. The review also describes the implication of redox mechanism in platelet storage considerations. PMID:28208668

  15. Communicating environmental health issues using GIS or improving response to citizens with understandable maps and data

    SciTech Connect

    Mann, J.H.

    1998-07-01

    People living near a Superfund site are understandably concerned about the effects of hazardous waste releases on the health of their families and themselves. These concerns often turn to anger if the residents believe investigators and public health officials are withholding critical details. In many communities with Superfund sites, residents are demanding detailed information on site investigations and public health assessments, even before such activities are completed. Investigators and public health officials can provide on-going public briefings using a geographic information system (GIS) as part of an interactive public presentation. A GIS is an excellent tool to answer questions about locations of multi-media site investigations and the analytical results because it combines computer mapping and graphics with a database. Rather than incorporate a multitude of slides and overheads into a detailed public presentation that too often never addresses the citizen concerns, a GIS can be used as a query system to answer citizen's questions. The GIS can be incorporated into a laptop or desktop computer for a one-on-one session with a resident or can be plugged into a computer projector to answer questions at public meetings.

  16. Current multiple sclerosis treatments have improved our understanding of MS autoimmune pathogenesis.

    PubMed

    Martin, Roland; Sospedra, Mireia; Rosito, Maria; Engelhardt, Britta

    2016-09-01

    Multiple sclerosis (MS) is the most common inflammatory disorder of the central nervous system (CNS) in young adults. When MS is not treated, it leads to irreversible and severe disability. The etiology of MS and its pathogenesis are not fully understood. The recent discovery that MS-associated genetic variants code for molecules related to the function of specific immune cell subsets is consistent with the concept of MS as a prototypic, T-cell-mediated autoimmune disease targeting the CNS. While the therapeutic efficacy of the currently available immunomodulatory therapies further strengthen this concept, differences observed in responses to MS treatment as well as additional clinical and imaging observations have also shown that the autoimmune pathogenesis underlying MS is much more complex than previously thought. There is therefore an unmet need for continued detailed phenotypic and functional analysis of disease-relevant adaptive immune cells and tissues directly derived from MS patients to unravel the immune etiology of MS in its entire complexity. In this review, we will discuss the currently available MS treatment options and approved drugs, including how they have contributed to the understanding of the immune pathology of this autoimmune disease.

  17. Improving the Understanding of Intake and Charge Effects for Increasing RCCI Engine Efficiency

    SciTech Connect

    Splitter, Derek A; Reitz, Rolf; Wissink, martin; DelVescovo, Dan

    2014-01-01

    The present experimental engine efficiency study explores the effects of intake pressure and temperature, and premixed and global equivalence ratios on gross thermal efficiency (GTE) using the reactivity controlled compression ignition (RCCI) combustion strategy. Experiments were conducted in a heavy-duty single-cylinder engine at constant net load (IMEPn) of 8.45 bar, 1300 rev/min engine speed, with 0% EGR, and a 50% mass fraction burned combustion phasing (CA50) of 0.5 CA ATDC. The engine was port fueled with E85 for the low reactivity fuel and direct injected with 3.5% 2-ethylhexyl nitrate (EHN) doped into 91 anti-knock index (AKI) gasoline for the high-reactivity fuel. The resulting reactivity of the enhanced fuel corresponds to an AKI of approximately 56 and a cetane number of approximately 28. The engine was operated with a wide range of intake pressures and temperatures, and the ratio of low- to high-reactivity fuel was adjusted to maintain a fixed speed-phasing-load condition. This allowed for the investigation of several combinations of intake temperature, intake pressure, and charge stratification at otherwise constant thermodynamic conditions. The results show that sources of engine inefficiency compete as functions of premixed and global equivalence ratios. Losses are minimized through proper balancing of intake pressure and temperature, such that the global equivalence ratio ( global) is as lean as possible without overly lean regions of the stratified charge causing an increase in incomplete combustion. The explored speed-load-phasing combination shows that losses are minimized at conditions where approximately 2/3 of the fuel is fully premixed. The results exhibit a pathway for achieving simultaneous increases in combustion and fuel efficiency through proper fuel reactivity and initial condition management.

  18. Towards an improved understanding of processes controlling absorption efficiency and biomagnification of organic chemicals by fish.

    PubMed

    Xiao, Ruiyang; Arnot, Jon A; MacLeod, Matthew

    2015-11-01

    Dietary exposure is considered the dominant pathway for fish exposed to persistent, hydrophobic chemicals in the environment. Here we present a dynamic, fugacity-based three-compartment bioaccumulation model that describes the fish body as one compartment and the gastrointestinal tract (GIT) as two compartments. The model simulates uptake from the GIT by passive diffusion and micelle-mediated diffusion, and chemical degradation in the fish and the GIT compartments. We applied the model to a consistent measured dietary uptake and depuration dataset for rainbow trout (n=215) that is comprised of chlorinated benzenes, biphenyls, dioxins, diphenyl ethers, and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). Model performance relative to the measured data is statistically similar regardless of whether micelle-mediated diffusion is included; however, there are considerable uncertainties in modeling this process. When degradation in the GIT is assumed to be negligible, modeled chemical elimination rates are similar to measured rates; however, predicted concentrations of the PAHs are consistently higher than measurements by up to a factor of 20. Introducing a kinetic limit on chemical transport from the fish compartment to the GIT and increasing the rate constant for degradation of PAHs in tissues of the liver and/or GIT are required to achieve good agreement between the modelled and measured concentrations for PAHs. Our results indicate that the apparent low absorption efficiency of PAHs relative to the chemicals with similar hydrophobicity is attributable to biotransformation in the liver and/or the GIT. Our results provide process-level insights about controls on the extent of bioaccumulation of chemicals.

  19. Improving the Understanding of the Link between Cognition and Functional Capacity in Schizophrenia and Bipolar Disorder

    PubMed Central

    Moore, Raeanne C.; Harmell, Alexandrea L.; Harvey, Philip D.; Bowie, Christopher R.; Depp, Colin A.; Pulver, Ann E.; McGrath, John A; Patterson, Thomas L.; Cardenas, Veronica; Wolyniec, Paula; Thornquist, Mary H.; Luke, James R.; Palmer, Barton W.; Jeste, Dilip V.; Mausbach, Brent T.

    2015-01-01

    OBJECTIVE Deficits in cognitive functioning are related to functional disability in people with serious mental illness. Measures of functional capacity are commonly used as a proxy for functional disabilities for cognitive remediation programs, and robust linear relationships between functional capacity and cognitive deficits are frequently observed. This study aimed to determine whether a curvilinear relationship better approximates the association between cognitive functioning and functional capacity. METHOD Two independent samples were studied. Study 1: Participants with schizophrenia (n=435) and bipolar disorder (n=390) aged 18–83 completed a neuropsychological battery and a performance-based measure of functional capacity. Study 2: 205 participants with schizophrenia (age range=39–72) completed a brief neuropsychological screening battery and a performance-based measure of functional capacity. For both studies, linear and quadratic curve estimations were conducted with cognitive performance predicting functional capacity scores. RESULTS Significant linear and quadratic trends were observed for both studies. Study 1: In both the schizophrenia and bipolar participants, when cognitive composite z-scores were >0 (indicating normal to above normal performance), cognition was not related to functional capacity. Study 2: When neuropsychological screening battery z-scores were >−1 (indicating low average to average performance), cognition was not related to functional capacity. CONCLUSIONS These results illustrate that in cognitively normal adults with serious mental illness, the relationship between cognitive function and functional capacity is relatively weak. These findings may aid clinicians and researchers determine who may optimally benefit from cognitive remediation programs, with greater benefits possibly being achieved for individuals with cognitive deficits relative to individuals with normal cognition. PMID:26427917

  20. Use of Airport Noise Complaint Files to Improve Understanding of Community Response to Aircraft Noise

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fidell, Sanford; Howe, Richard

    1998-01-01

    This study assessed the feasibility of using complaint information archived by modem airport monitoring systems to conduct quantitative analyses of the causes of aircraft noise complaints and their relationship to noise- induced annoyance. It was found that all computer-based airport monitoring systems provide at least rudimentary tools for performing data base searches by complainant name, address, date, time of day, and types of aircraft and complaints. Analyses of such information can provide useful information about longstanding concerns, such as the extent to which complaint rates are driven by objectively measurable aspects of aircraft operations; the degree to which changes in complaint rates can be predicted prior to implementation of noise mitigation measures; and the degree to which aircraft complaint information can be used to simplify and otherwise improve prediction of the prevalence of noise-induced annoyance in communities.

  1. Indirect Effects of the Family Check-up on School-Age Academic Achievement through Improvements in Parenting in Early Childhood

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brennan, Lauretta M.; Shelleby, Elizabeth C.; Shaw, Daniel S.; Gardner, Frances; Dishion, Thomas J.; Wilson, Melvin

    2013-01-01

    This project examined the hypothesis that the impact of the Family Check-Up on parent use of positive behavior support would indirectly improve academic achievement scores at school age. The study included a sample of 731 high-risk families recruited from Women, Infant, and Children Supplemental Nutrition Program settings in 3 geographically…

  2. Using International Study Series and Meta-Analytic Research Syntheses to Scope Pedagogical Development Aimed at Improving Student Attitude and Achievement in School Mathematics and Science

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ruthven, Kenneth

    2011-01-01

    Taking lower-secondary schooling within the English educational system as an example, this paper illustrates the contribution of two bodies of international scholarship to the scoping of research-based pedagogical development aimed at improving student attitude and achievement in science and mathematics. After sketching the English context of…

  3. Improvements in compliance with resuscitation bundles and achievement of end points after an educational program on the management of severe sepsis and septic shock.

    PubMed

    Jeon, Kyeongman; Shin, Tae Gun; Sim, Min Seob; Suh, Gee Young; Lim, So Yeon; Song, Hyoung Gon; Jo, Ik Joon

    2012-05-01

    The objectives of this study were to determine whether an educational program could improve compliance with resuscitation bundles and the outcomes of patients with severe sepsis or septic shock and to evaluate which resuscitation bundle end points were associated with in-hospital mortality. This was a retrospective observational study of 366 patients (163 of historical controls and 203 of treatment patients) with severe sepsis or septic shock who presented to the emergency department between May 2007 and July 2009. Compliance with resuscitation bundles and achievement of the corresponding end points were compared before and after the 3-month educational program. Compliance with central line insertion and monitoring of central venous pressure (29% vs. 67%, P < 0.001) and central venous oxygen saturation (ScvO₂) (25% vs. 68%, P < 0.001) was significantly improved after the educational program. The achievement of target ScvO₂ within the first 6 h was significantly improved (62% vs. 88%, P < 0.001). In-hospital mortality was independently associated with adequate fluid challenge (odds ratio [OR], 0.161; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.046-0.559) and the achievement of target mean arterial pressure (OR, 0.056; 95% CI, 0.008-0.384) and ScvO₂ (OR, 0.251; 95% CI, 0.072-0.875) among the five sepsis resuscitation bundles. In conclusion, an educational program can improve compliance with resuscitation bundles and achievement of their corresponding end points.

  4. Project HAPI (Handicapped Achievement Program Improvement): Assessment plus Intervention equals IEP. A Handbook on How to Write an Individualized Education Program for the Educationally Handicapped. Book Two.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chapman, Jean; And Others

    The second of five handbooks developed by Project HAPI (Handicapped Achievement Program Improvement), a multimedia staff development program to help teachers and specialists write effective individualized education programs (IEPs), is in looseleaf workbook format and focuses on children with severe education handicaps. It is reported that students…

  5. The Efforts to Improve Mathematics Learning Achievement Results of High School Students as Required by Competency-Based Curriculum and Lesson Level-Based Curriculum

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sidabutar, Ropinus

    2016-01-01

    The research was aimed to investigate the effect of various, innovated teaching models to improved the student's achievement in various topic in Mathematics. The study was conduct experiment by using innovated teaching with contextual, media and web which are the compared. with conventional teaching method. The result showed the innovation in the…

  6. Improving the Teaching and Learning of Science in a Suburban Junior High School on Long Island: Achieving Parity through Cogenerative Dialogues

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Baker, Eileen Perman

    2010-01-01

    The research in this dissertation focuses on ways to improve the teaching and learning of science in a suburban junior high school on Long Island, New York. The study is my attempt to find ways to achieve parity in my classroom in terms of success in science. I was specifically looking for ways to encourage Black female students in my classroom…

  7. Inquiry and Blended Learning Based Learning Material Development for Improving Student Achievement on General Physics I of Mathematics and Natural Science of State University of Medan

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Motlan; Sinulinggga, Karya; Siagian, Henok

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this research is to determine if inquiry and blended learning based materials can improve student's achievement. The learning materials are: book, worksheet, and test, website, etc. The type of this research is quasi experiment using two-group pretest posttest design. The population is all students of first year who take general physics…

  8. A Framework for Understanding Cross-National and Cross-Ethnic Gaps in Math and Science Achievement: The Case of the United States

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Guglielmi, R. Sergio; Brekke, Nancy

    2017-01-01

    Comparative international assessments of academic achievement consistently indicate that US students trail behind many peers, particularly those from east Asia, in math and science. Traditional efforts to explain this finding have focused on identifying characteristics that might differentiate the United States from top-performing countries.…

  9. Understanding the Effect of KIPP as It Scales: Volume I, Impacts on Achievement and Other Outcomes. Final Report of KIPP's Investing in Innovation Grant Evaluation. Executive Summary

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tuttle, Christina Clark; Gleason, Philip; Knechtel, Virginia; Nichols-Barrer, Ira; Booker, Kevin; Chojnacki, Gregory; Coen, Thomas; Goble, Lisbeth

    2015-01-01

    KIPP (Knowledge is Power Program) is a national network of public charter schools whose stated mission is to help underserved students enroll in and graduate from college. Prior studies (see Tuttle et al. 2013) have consistently found that attending a KIPP middle school positively affects student achievement, but few have addressed longer-term…

  10. Understanding the Effect of KIPP as It Scales: Volume I, Impacts on Achievement and Other Outcomes. Final Report of KIPP's "Investing in Innovation Grant Evaluation"

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tuttle, Christina Clark; Gleason, Philip; Knechtel, Virginia; Nichols-Barrer, Ira; Booker, Kevin; Chojnacki, Gregory; Coen, Thomas; Goble, Lisbeth

    2015-01-01

    KIPP (Knowledge is Power Program) is a national network of public charter schools whose stated mission is to help underserved students enroll in and graduate from college. Prior studies (see Tuttle et al. 2013) have consistently found that attending a KIPP middle school positively affects student achievement, but few have addressed longer-term…

  11. The emergence of hydrogeophysics for improved understanding of subsurface processes over multiple scales

    DOE PAGES

    Binley, Andrew; Hubbard, Susan S.; Huisman, Johan A.; ...

    2015-06-15

    Geophysics provides a multidimensional suite of investigative methods that are transforming our ability to see into the very fabric of the subsurface environment, and monitor the dynamics of its fluids and the biogeochemical reactions that occur within it. Here we document how geophysical methods have emerged as valuable tools for investigating shallow subsurface processes over the past two decades and offer a vision for future developments relevant to hydrology and also ecosystem science. The field of “hydrogeophysics” arose in the late 1990s, prompted, in part, by the wealth of studies on stochastic subsurface hydrology that argued for better field-based investigativemore » techniques. These new hydrogeophysical approaches benefited from the emergence of practical and robust data inversion techniques, in many cases with a view to quantify shallow subsurface heterogeneity and the associated dynamics of subsurface fluids. Furthermore, the need for quantitative characterization stimulated a wealth of new investigations into petrophysical relationships that link hydrologically relevant properties to measurable geophysical parameters. Development of time-lapse approaches provided a new suite of tools for hydrological investigation, enhanced further with the realization that some geophysical properties may be sensitive to biogeochemical transformations in the subsurface environment, thus opening up the new field of “biogeophysics.” Early hydrogeophysical studies often concentrated on relatively small “plot-scale” experiments. More recently, however, the translation to larger-scale characterization has been the focus of a number of studies. In conclusion, geophysical technologies continue to develop, driven, in part, by the increasing need to understand and quantify key processes controlling sustainable water resources and ecosystem services.« less

  12. The emergence of hydrogeophysics for improved understanding of subsurface processes over multiple scales

    SciTech Connect

    Binley, Andrew; Hubbard, Susan S.; Huisman, Johan A.; Revil, André; Robinson, David A.; Singha, Kamini; Slater, Lee D.

    2015-06-15

    Geophysics provides a multidimensional suite of investigative methods that are transforming our ability to see into the very fabric of the subsurface environment, and monitor the dynamics of its fluids and the biogeochemical reactions that occur within it. Here we document how geophysical methods have emerged as valuable tools for investigating shallow subsurface processes over the past two decades and offer a vision for future developments relevant to hydrology and also ecosystem science. The field of “hydrogeophysics” arose in the late 1990s, prompted, in part, by the wealth of studies on stochastic subsurface hydrology that argued for better field-based investigative techniques. These new hydrogeophysical approaches benefited from the emergence of practical and robust data inversion techniques, in many cases with a view to quantify shallow subsurface heterogeneity and the associated dynamics of subsurface fluids. Furthermore, the need for quantitative characterization stimulated a wealth of new investigations into petrophysical relationships that link hydrologically relevant properties to measurable geophysical parameters. Development of time-lapse approaches provided a new suite of tools for hydrological investigation, enhanced further with the realization that some geophysical properties may be sensitive to biogeochemical transformations in the subsurface environment, thus opening up the new field of “biogeophysics.” Early hydrogeophysical studies often concentrated on relatively small “plot-scale” experiments. More recently, however, the translation to larger-scale characterization has been the focus of a number of studies. In conclusion, geophysical technologies continue to develop, driven, in part, by the increasing need to understand and quantify key processes controlling sustainable water resources and ecosystem services.

  13. The emergence of hydrogeophysics for improved understanding of subsurface processes over multiple scales

    PubMed Central

    Hubbard, Susan S.; Huisman, Johan A.; Revil, André; Robinson, David A.; Singha, Kamini; Slater, Lee D.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Geophysics provides a multidimensional suite of investigative methods that are transforming our ability to see into the very fabric of the subsurface environment, and monitor the dynamics of its fluids and the biogeochemical reactions that occur within it. Here we document how geophysical methods have emerged as valuable tools for investigating shallow subsurface processes over the past two decades and offer a vision for future developments relevant to hydrology and also ecosystem science. The field of “hydrogeophysics” arose in the late 1990s, prompted, in part, by the wealth of studies on stochastic subsurface hydrology that argued for better field‐based investigative techniques. These new hydrogeophysical approaches benefited from the emergence of practical and robust data inversion techniques, in many cases with a view to quantify shallow subsurface heterogeneity and the associated dynamics of subsurface fluids. Furthermore, the need for quantitative characterization stimulated a wealth of new investigations into petrophysical relationships that link hydrologically relevant properties to measurable geophysical parameters. Development of time‐lapse approaches provided a new suite of tools for hydrological investigation, enhanced further with the realization that some geophysical properties may be sensitive to biogeochemical transformations in the subsurface environment, thus opening up the new field of “biogeophysics.” Early hydrogeophysical studies often concentrated on relatively small “plot‐scale” experiments. More recently, however, the translation to larger‐scale characterization has been the focus of a number of studies. Geophysical technologies continue to develop, driven, in part, by the increasing need to understand and quantify key processes controlling sustainable water resources and ecosystem services. PMID:26900183

  14. Surveillance should be strengthened to improve epidemiological understandings of mosquito-borne Barmah Forest virus infection

    PubMed Central

    Eastwood, Keith; Webb, Cameron; Durrheim, David

    2012-01-01

    Introduction Barmah Forest virus (BFV) is a mosquito-borne virus causing epidemic polyarthritis in Australia. This study used case follow-up of cases from the surveillance system to demonstrate that routinely collected BFV notification data were an unreliable indicator of the true location of exposure. Methods BFV notifications from June 2001 to May 2011 were extracted from the New South Wales (NSW) Notifiable Conditions Information Management System to study case distribution. Disease cluster analysis was performed using spatial scan statistics. Exposure history data were collected from cases notified in 2010 and 2011 to accurately determine travel to high-risk areas. Results Cluster analysis using address data identified an area of increased BFV disease incidence in the mid-north coast of NSW contiguous with estuarine wetlands. When travel to this area was investigated, 96.7% (29/30) cases reported having visited coastal regions within four weeks of developing symptoms. Discussion Along the central NSW coastline, extensive wetlands occur in close proximity to populated areas. These wetlands provide ideal breeding habitats for a range of mosquito species implicated in the transmission of BFV. This is the first study to fully assess case exposure with findings suggesting that sporadic cases of BFV in people living further away from the coast do not reflect alternative exposure sites but are likely to result from travel to coastal regions. Spatial analysis by case address alone may lead to inaccurate understandings of the true distribution of arboviral diseases. Subsequently, this information has important implications for the collection of mosquito-borne disease surveillance information and public health response strategies. PMID:23908926

  15. Micellar-enhanced ultrafiltration for the removal of cadmium and zinc: Use of response surface methodology to improve understanding of process performance and optimisation.

    PubMed

    Landaburu-Aguirre, Junkal; Pongrácz, Eva; Perämäki, Paavo; Keiski, Riitta L

    2010-08-15

    In this study, removal of cadmium and zinc from their respective water samples was conducted by micellar-enhanced ultrafiltration (MEUF), using sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS) as the surfactant. Response surface methodology (RSM) was used for modelling and optimising the process, and to gain a better understanding of the process performance. Face Centred Composite (CCF) Design was used as the experimental design. The factors studied were pressure (P), nominal molecular weight limit (NMWL), heavy metal feed concentration (C(Zn), C(Cd)) and SDS feed concentration (C(SDS)). Using RSM the retention of heavy metals was maximized while optimising the surfactant to metal ratio (S/M). Response surface plots improved the understanding the effect of the factors on permeate flux. Concentration polarisation was negligible and therefore, high NMWL membranes with high pressure provided high flux with negligible effect on the retention of heavy metals. The optimal conditions of zinc removal were C(SDS)=13.9 mM, C(Zn)=0.5 mM, NMWL=10 kDa and P=3.0 bar, and for cadmium removal C(SDS)=14.2 mM, C(Cd)=0.5 mM, NMWL=10 kDa and P=3.0 bar. The retentions achieved were 98.0+/-0.4% for zinc and 99.0+/-0.4% for cadmium. To improve resource efficiency, the surfactant was reclaimed after use; 84% of the initial SDS was recovered by precipitation.

  16. A New and Improved Carbon Dioxide Isotope Analyzer for Understanding Soil-Plant-Atmosphere Interactions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Y. W.; Berman, E. S.; Owano, T. G.; Verfaillie, J. G.; Oikawa, P. Y.; Baldocchi, D. D.; Still, C. J.; Gardner, A.; Baer, D. S.; Rastogi, B.

    2015-12-01

    Stable CO2 isotopes provide information on biogeochemical processes that occur at the soil-plant-atmosphere interface. While δ13C measurement can provide information on the sources of the CO2, be it photosynthesis, natural gas combustion, other fossil fuel sources, landfills or other sources, δ18O, and δ17O are thought to be determined by the hydrological cycling of the CO2. Though researchers have called for analytical tools for CO2 isotope measurements that are reliable and field-deployable, developing such instrument remains a challenge. The carbon dioxide isotope analyzer developed by Los Gatos Research (LGR) uses LGR's patented Off-Axis ICOS (Integrated Cavity Output Spectroscopy) technology and incorporates proprietary internal thermal control for high sensitivity and optimal instrument stability. This new and improved analyzer measures CO2 concentration as well as δ13C, δ18O, and δ17O from CO2 at natural abundance (150-2500 ppm). The laboratory precision is ±200 ppb (1σ) in CO2 at 1 s, with a long-term (2 min) precision of ±20 ppb. The 1-second precision for both δ13C and δ18O is 0.7 ‰, and for δ17O is 1.8 ‰. The long-term (2 min) precision for both δ13C and δ18O is 0.08 ‰, and for δ17O is 0.18 ‰. The instrument has improved precision, stability and user interface over previous LGR CO2 isotope instruments and can be easily programmed for periodic referencing and sampling from different sources when coupled with LGR's multiport inlet unit (MIU). We have deployed two of these instruments at two different field sites, one at Twitchell Island in Sacramento County, CA to monitor the CO2 isotopic fluxes from an alfalfa field from 6/29/2015-7/13/2015, and the other at the Wind River Experimental Forest in Washington to monitor primarily the oxygen isotopes of CO2 within the canopy from 8/4/2015 through mid-November 2015. Methodology, laboratory development and testing and field performance are presented.

  17. The hybrid progress note: semiautomating daily progress notes to achieve high-quality documentation and improve provider efficiency.

    PubMed

    Kargul, George J; Wright, Scott M; Knight, Amy M; McNichol, Mary T; Riggio, Jeffrey M

    2013-01-01

    Health care institutions are moving toward fully functional electronic medical records (EMRs) that promise improved documentation, safety, and quality of care. However, many hospitals do not yet use electronic documentation. Paper charting, including writing daily progress notes, is time-consuming and error prone. To improve the quality of documentation at their hospital, the authors introduced a highly formatted paper note template (hybrid note) that is prepopulated with data from the EMR. Inclusion of vital signs and active medications improved from 75.5% and 60% to 100% (P < .001), respectively. The use of unapproved abbreviations in the medication list decreased from 13.3% to 0% (P < .001). Prepopulating data enhances provider efficiency. Interviews of key clinician leaders also suggest that the initiative is well accepted and that documentation quality is enhanced. The hybrid progress note improves documentation and provider efficiency, promotes quality care, and initiates the development of the forthcoming electronic progress note.

  18. Improving Our Fundamental Understanding of the Role of Aerosol Cloud Interactions in the Climate System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Seinfeld, John H.; Bretherton, Christopher; Carslaw, Kenneth S.; Coe, Hugh; DeMott, Paul J.; Dunlea, Edward J.; Feingold, Graham; Ghan, Steven; Guenther, Alex B.; Kahn, Ralph; Kraucunas, Ian; Kreidenweis, Sonia M.; Molina, Mario J.; Nenes, Athanasios; Penner, Joyce E.; Prather, Kimberly A.; Ramanathan, V.; Ramaswamy, Venkatachalam; Rasch, Philip J.; Ravishankara, A. R.; Rosenfeld, Daniel; Stephens, Graeme; Wood, Robert

    2016-01-01

    The effect of an increase in atmospheric aerosol concentrations on the distribution and radiative properties of Earth's clouds is the most uncertain component of the overall global radiative forcing from preindustrial time. General circulation models (GCMs) are the tool for predicting future climate, but the treatment of aerosols, clouds, and aerosol-cloud radiative effects carries large uncertainties that directly affect GCM predictions, such as climate sensitivity. Predictions are hampered by the large range of scales of interaction between various components that need to be captured. Observation systems (remote sensing, in situ) are increasingly being used to constrain predictions, but significant challenges exist, to some extent because of the large range of scales and the fact that the various measuring systems tend to address different scales. Fine-scale models represent clouds, aerosols, and aerosol-cloud interactions with high fidelity but do not include interactions with the larger scale and are therefore limited from a climatic point of view. We suggest strategies for improving estimates of aerosol-cloud relationships in climate models, for new remote sensing and in situ measurements, and for quantifying and reducing model uncertainty.

  19. Recent Advances in Improvement of Forecast Skill and Understanding Climate Processes Using AIRS Version-5 Products

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Susskind, Joel; Molnar, Gyula; Iredell, Lena; Rosenberg, Robert

    2012-01-01

    AIRS/AMSU is the state of the art infrared and microwave atmospheric sounding system flying aboard EOS Aqua. These observations, covering the period September 2002 until the present, have been analyzed using the AIRS Science Team Version-5 retrieval algorithm. AIRS is a high spectral resolution infrared grating spectrometer with spect,ral coverage from 650 per centimeter extending to 2660 per centimeter, with low noise and a spectral resolving power of 2400. A brief overview of the AIRS Version-5 retrieval procedure will be presented, including the AIRS channels used in different steps in the retrieval process. Many researchers have used these products to make significant advances in both climate and weather applications. Recent significant results of these experiments will be presented, including results showing that 1) assimilation of AIRS Quality Controlled temperature profiles into a General Circulation Model (GCM) significantly improves the ability to predict storm tracks of intense precipitation events; and 2) anomaly time-series of Outgoing Longwave Radiation (OLR) computed using AIRS sounding products closely match those determined from the CERES instrument, and furthermore explain that the phenomenon that global and especially tropical mean OLR have been decreasing since September 2002 is a result of El Nino/La Nina oscillations during this period.

  20. Improving our fundamental understanding of the role of aerosol-cloud interactions in the climate system.

    PubMed

    Seinfeld, John H; Bretherton, Christopher; Carslaw, Kenneth S; Coe, Hugh; DeMott, Paul J; Dunlea, Edward J; Feingold, Graham; Ghan, Steven; Guenther, Alex B; Kahn, Ralph; Kraucunas, Ian; Kreidenweis, Sonia M; Molina, Mario J; Nenes, Athanasios; Penner, Joyce E; Prather, Kimberly A; Ramanathan, V; Ramaswamy, Venkatachalam; Rasch, Philip J; Ravishankara, A R; Rosenfeld, Daniel; Stephens, Graeme; Wood, Robert

    2016-05-24

    The effect of an increase in atmospheric aerosol concentrations on the distribution and radiative properties of Earth's clouds is the most uncertain component of the overall global radiative forcing from preindustrial time. General circulation models (GCMs) are the tool for predicting future climate, but the treatment of aerosols, clouds, and aerosol-cloud radiative effects carries large uncertainties that directly affect GCM predictions, such as climate sensitivity. Predictions are hampered by the large range of scales of interaction between various components that need to be captured. Observation systems (remote sensing, in situ) are increasingly being used to constrain predictions, but significant challenges exist, to some extent because of the large range of scales and the fact that the various measuring systems tend to address different scales. Fine-scale models represent clouds, aerosols, and aerosol-cloud interactions with high fidelity but do not include interactions with the larger scale and are therefore limited from a climatic point of view. We suggest strategies for improving estimates of aerosol-cloud relationships in climate models, for new remote sensing and in situ measurements, and for quantifying and reducing model uncertainty.