Science.gov

Sample records for automatic quality assessment

  1. Automatic no-reference image quality assessment.

    PubMed

    Li, Hongjun; Hu, Wei; Xu, Zi-Neng

    2016-01-01

    No-reference image quality assessment aims to predict the visual quality of distorted images without examining the original image as a reference. Most no-reference image quality metrics which have been already proposed are designed for one or a set of predefined specific distortion types and are unlikely to generalize for evaluating images degraded with other types of distortion. There is a strong need of no-reference image quality assessment methods which are applicable to various distortions. In this paper, the authors proposed a no-reference image quality assessment method based on a natural image statistic model in the wavelet transform domain. A generalized Gaussian density model is employed to summarize the marginal distribution of wavelet coefficients of the test images, so that correlative parameters are needed for the evaluation of image quality. The proposed algorithm is tested on three large-scale benchmark databases. Experimental results demonstrate that the proposed algorithm is easy to implement and computational efficient. Furthermore, our method can be applied to many well-known types of image distortions, and achieves a good quality of prediction performance.

  2. Automatic image quality assessment for uterine cervical imagery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gu, Jia; Li, Wenjing

    2006-03-01

    Uterine cervical cancer is the second most common cancer among women worldwide. However, its death rate can be dramatically reduced by appropriate treatment, if early detection is available. We are developing a Computer-Aided-Diagnosis (CAD) system to facilitate colposcopic examinations for cervical cancer screening and diagnosis. Unfortunately, the effort to develop fully automated cervical cancer diagnostic algorithms is hindered by the paucity of high quality, standardized imaging data. The limited quality of cervical imagery can be attributed to several factors, including: incorrect instrumental settings or positioning, glint (specular reflection), blur due to poor focus, and physical contaminants. Glint eliminates the color information in affected pixels and can therefore introduce artifacts in feature extraction algorithms. Instrumental settings that result in an inadequate dynamic range or an overly constrained region of interest can reduce or eliminate pixel information and thus make image analysis algorithms unreliable. Poor focus causes image blur with a consequent loss of texture information. In addition, a variety of physical contaminants, such as blood, can obscure the desired scene and reduce or eliminate diagnostic information from affected areas. Thus, automated feedback should be provided to the colposcopist as a means to promote corrective actions. In this paper, we describe automated image quality assessment techniques, which include region of interest detection and assessment, contrast dynamic range assessment, blur detection, and contaminant detection. We have tested these algorithms using clinical colposcopic imagery, and plan to implement these algorithms in a CAD system designed to simplify high quality data acquisition. Moreover, these algorithms may also be suitable for image quality assessment in telemedicine applications.

  3. Automatic MeSH term assignment and quality assessment.

    PubMed Central

    Kim, W.; Aronson, A. R.; Wilbur, W. J.

    2001-01-01

    For computational purposes documents or other objects are most often represented by a collection of individual attributes that may be strings or numbers. Such attributes are often called features and success in solving a given problem can depend critically on the nature of the features selected to represent documents. Feature selection has received considerable attention in the machine learning literature. In the area of document retrieval we refer to feature selection as indexing. Indexing has not traditionally been evaluated by the same methods used in machine learning feature selection. Here we show how indexing quality may be evaluated in a machine learning setting and apply this methodology to results of the Indexing Initiative at the National Library of Medicine. PMID:11825203

  4. Automatic Assessment of Pathological Voice Quality Using Higher-Order Statistics in the LPC Residual Domain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Ji Yeoun; Hahn, Minsoo

    2010-12-01

    A preprocessing scheme based on linear prediction coefficient (LPC) residual is applied to higher-order statistics (HOSs) for automatic assessment of an overall pathological voice quality. The normalized skewness and kurtosis are estimated from the LPC residual and show statistically meaningful distributions to characterize the pathological voice quality. 83 voice samples of the sustained vowel /a/ phonation are used in this study and are independently assessed by a speech and language therapist (SALT) according to the grade of the severity of dysphonia of GRBAS scale. These are used to train and test classification and regression tree (CART). The best result is obtained using an optima l decision tree implemented by a combination of the normalized skewness and kurtosis, with an accuracy of 92.9%. It is concluded that the method can be used as an assessment tool, providing a valuable aid to the SALT during clinical evaluation of an overall pathological voice quality.

  5. DAF: differential ACE filtering image quality assessment by automatic color equalization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ouni, S.; Chambah, M.; Saint-Jean, C.; Rizzi, A.

    2008-01-01

    Ideally, a quality assessment system would perceive and measure image or video impairments just like a human being. But in reality, objective quality metrics do not necessarily correlate well with perceived quality [1]. Plus, some measures assume that there exists a reference in the form of an "original" to compare to, which prevents their usage in digital restoration field, where often there is no reference to compare to. That is why subjective evaluation is the most used and most efficient approach up to now. But subjective assessment is expensive, time consuming and does not respond, hence, to the economic requirements [2,3]. Thus, reliable automatic methods for visual quality assessment are needed in the field of digital film restoration. The ACE method, for Automatic Color Equalization [4,6], is an algorithm for digital images unsupervised enhancement. It is based on a new computational approach that tries to model the perceptual response of our vision system merging the Gray World and White Patch equalization mechanisms in a global and local way. Like our vision system ACE is able to adapt to widely varying lighting conditions, and to extract visual information from the environment efficaciously. Moreover ACE can be run in an unsupervised manner. Hence it is very useful as a digital film restoration tool since no a priori information is available. In this paper we deepen the investigation of using the ACE algorithm as a basis for a reference free image quality evaluation. This new metric called DAF for Differential ACE Filtering [7] is an objective quality measure that can be used in several image restoration and image quality assessment systems. In this paper, we compare on different image databases, the results obtained with DAF and with some subjective image quality assessments (Mean Opinion Score MOS as measure of perceived image quality). We study also the correlation between objective measure and MOS. In our experiments, we have used for the first image

  6. Groupwise conditional random forests for automatic shape classification and contour quality assessment in radiotherapy planning.

    PubMed

    McIntosh, Chris; Svistoun, Igor; Purdie, Thomas G

    2013-06-01

    Radiation therapy is used to treat cancer patients around the world. High quality treatment plans maximally radiate the targets while minimally radiating healthy organs at risk. In order to judge plan quality and safety, segmentations of the targets and organs at risk are created, and the amount of radiation that will be delivered to each structure is estimated prior to treatment. If the targets or organs at risk are mislabelled, or the segmentations are of poor quality, the safety of the radiation doses will be erroneously reviewed and an unsafe plan could proceed. We propose a technique to automatically label groups of segmentations of different structures from a radiation therapy plan for the joint purposes of providing quality assurance and data mining. Given one or more segmentations and an associated image we seek to assign medically meaningful labels to each segmentation and report the confidence of that label. Our method uses random forests to learn joint distributions over the training features, and then exploits a set of learned potential group configurations to build a conditional random field (CRF) that ensures the assignment of labels is consistent across the group of segmentations. The CRF is then solved via a constrained assignment problem. We validate our method on 1574 plans, consisting of 17[Formula: see text] 579 segmentations, demonstrating an overall classification accuracy of 91.58%. Our results also demonstrate the stability of RF with respect to tree depth and the number of splitting variables in large data sets.

  7. Assessing the impact of graphical quality on automatic text recognition in digital maps

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chiang, Yao-Yi; Leyk, Stefan; Honarvar Nazari, Narges; Moghaddam, Sima; Tan, Tian Xiang

    2016-08-01

    Converting geographic features (e.g., place names) in map images into a vector format is the first step for incorporating cartographic information into a geographic information system (GIS). With the advancement in computational power and algorithm design, map processing systems have been considerably improved over the last decade. However, the fundamental map processing techniques such as color image segmentation, (map) layer separation, and object recognition are sensitive to minor variations in graphical properties of the input image (e.g., scanning resolution). As a result, most map processing results would not meet user expectations if the user does not "properly" scan the map of interest, pre-process the map image (e.g., using compression or not), and train the processing system, accordingly. These issues could slow down the further advancement of map processing techniques as such unsuccessful attempts create a discouraged user community, and less sophisticated tools would be perceived as more viable solutions. Thus, it is important to understand what kinds of maps are suitable for automatic map processing and what types of results and process-related errors can be expected. In this paper, we shed light on these questions by using a typical map processing task, text recognition, to discuss a number of map instances that vary in suitability for automatic processing. We also present an extensive experiment on a diverse set of scanned historical maps to provide measures of baseline performance of a standard text recognition tool under varying map conditions (graphical quality) and text representations (that can vary even within the same map sheet). Our experimental results help the user understand what to expect when a fully or semi-automatic map processing system is used to process a scanned map with certain (varying) graphical properties and complexities in map content.

  8. Automatic assessment of voice quality in the context of multiple annotations.

    PubMed

    Gil González, Julián; Álvarez, Mauricio A; Orozco, Álvaro A

    2015-01-01

    Approaches to evaluate voice quality include perceptual analysis, and acoustical analysis. Perceptual analysis is subjective and depends mostly on the ability of a specialist to assess a pathology, whereas acoustical analysis is objective, but highly relies on the quality of the so called annotations that the specialist assigns to the voice signal. The quality of the annotations for acoustical analysis depends heavily on the expertise and knowledge of the specialist. We face a scenario where we have annotations performed by several specialists with different levels of expertise and knowledge. Traditional pattern recognition methods employed in acoustical analysis are no longer applicable, since these methods are designed for scenarios where a "ground-truth" label is assigned by the specialist. In this paper, we apply recent developments in machine learning for taking into account multiple annotators for acoustical analysis of voice signals. For the classification step we compare two techniques, one of them based on Gaussian Processes for regression with multiple annotators, and the other is a multi-class Logistic Regression model that measures the annotator performance in terms of sensitivity and specificity. The performance of classifiers is assessed in terms of Cohen's Kappa index. Results show that the multi-annotator classification schemes have better performance when compared to techniques based on a traditional classifier where the true label is estimated from the multiple annotations available using majority voting.

  9. A conceptual study of automatic and semi-automatic quality assurance techniques for round image processing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1983-01-01

    This report summarizes the results of a study conducted by Engineering and Economics Research (EER), Inc. under NASA Contract Number NAS5-27513. The study involved the development of preliminary concepts for automatic and semiautomatic quality assurance (QA) techniques for ground image processing. A distinction is made between quality assessment and the more comprehensive quality assurance which includes decision making and system feedback control in response to quality assessment.

  10. Back-and-Forth Methodology for Objective Voice Quality Assessment: From/to Expert Knowledge to/from Automatic Classification of Dysphonia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fredouille, Corinne; Pouchoulin, Gilles; Ghio, Alain; Revis, Joana; Bonastre, Jean-François; Giovanni, Antoine

    2009-12-01

    This paper addresses voice disorder assessment. It proposes an original back-and-forth methodology involving an automatic classification system as well as knowledge of the human experts (machine learning experts, phoneticians, and pathologists). The goal of this methodology is to bring a better understanding of acoustic phenomena related to dysphonia. The automatic system was validated on a dysphonic corpus (80 female voices), rated according to the GRBAS perceptual scale by an expert jury. Firstly, focused on the frequency domain, the classification system showed the interest of 0-3000 Hz frequency band for the classification task based on the GRBAS scale. Later, an automatic phonemic analysis underlined the significance of consonants and more surprisingly of unvoiced consonants for the same classification task. Submitted to the human experts, these observations led to a manual analysis of unvoiced plosives, which highlighted a lengthening of VOT according to the dysphonia severity validated by a preliminary statistical analysis.

  11. The SIETTE Automatic Assessment Environment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Conejo, Ricardo; Guzmán, Eduardo; Trella, Monica

    2016-01-01

    This article describes the evolution and current state of the domain-independent Siette assessment environment. Siette supports different assessment methods--including classical test theory, item response theory, and computer adaptive testing--and integrates them with multidimensional student models used by intelligent educational systems.…

  12. Automatic Assessment of 3D Modeling Exams

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sanna, A.; Lamberti, F.; Paravati, G.; Demartini, C.

    2012-01-01

    Computer-based assessment of exams provides teachers and students with two main benefits: fairness and effectiveness in the evaluation process. This paper proposes a fully automatic evaluation tool for the Graphic and Virtual Design (GVD) curriculum at the First School of Architecture of the Politecnico di Torino, Italy. In particular, the tool is…

  13. Self-assessing target with automatic feedback

    DOEpatents

    Larkin, Stephen W.; Kramer, Robert L.

    2004-03-02

    A self assessing target with four quadrants and a method of use thereof. Each quadrant containing possible causes for why shots are going into that particular quadrant rather than the center mass of the target. Each possible cause is followed by a solution intended to help the marksman correct the problem causing the marksman to shoot in that particular area. In addition, the self assessing target contains possible causes for general shooting errors and solutions to the causes of the general shooting error. The automatic feedback with instant suggestions and corrections enables the shooter to improve their marksmanship.

  14. Automatic quality and ripeness inspection system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fang, Jing; van Renesse, Rudolf L.

    1990-08-01

    The feasibility of an opto-electronic inspection system for the sorting and grading of apples with respect to ripeness and quality is studied. This study comprises a detailed spectral analysis of the healthy skin as well as a variety of visual defects. Three different apple species were studied: Cox orange, Golden delicious and Golden rennet. Spectral wavebands of interest appear to be the chlorophyll peak around 570nm, the ripeness peak around 64Onrrt and the near infra-red beyond 75Onxn. Stem and calix of apples pose a separate problem because their spectral reflection cannot be distinguished from that of most visual defects. A solution for this problem is given.

  15. Automatic selection of best quality vessels from multiple-phase coronary CT angiography (cCTA)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Jordan; Hadjiiski, Lubomir; Chan, Heang-Ping; Zhou, Chuan; Wei, Jun; Chughtai, Aamer; Kuriakose, Jean; Agarwal, Prachi; Kazerooni, Ella

    2015-03-01

    We are developing an automated method to select the best-quality vessels from coronary arterial trees in multiplephase cCTA and build a best-quality tree to facilitate the detection of stenotic plaques. Using our previously developed vessel registration method, the vessels from different phases were automatically registered. Branching points on the centerline are projected onto the registered trees. The centerlines are split into branches based on the projected branching points. Each tree branch is then straightened. The registered trees and centerline branches are used to determine the correspondence of branches between phases so that each branch can be compared to its corresponding branches in the other phases. A vessel quality measure (VQM) is calculated as the average radial gradients at the vessel wall over the entire vessel branch. The quality of the corresponding branches from all phases is automatically compared using the VQM. An observer preference study was conducted with two radiologists to visually compare the quality of the vessels. For each branch, the pair that was automatically determined to be the best and worst quality by the VQM was used for the radiologists' visual assessment. Each radiologist, blinded to the VQM, evaluated pairs of corresponding branches and provided their preference. The performance of the automatic selection using VQM was evaluated as the percentage of the total number of vessel pairs for which the automatic selection agreed with the radiologist's selection of the higher quality branch in the pair. The agreement between the first radiologist and the automated selection was 80% and that between the second radiologist and the automated selection was 82%. In comparison, the agreement between the two radiologists was 90%. This preliminary study demonstrates the feasibility of using an automated method to select the best-quality vessels from multiple cCTA phases.

  16. Automatic Assessment of Socioeconomic Impact on Cardiac Rehabilitation

    PubMed Central

    Calvo, Mireia; Subirats, Laia; Ceccaroni, Luigi; Maroto, José María; de Pablo, Carmen; Miralles, Felip

    2013-01-01

    Disability-Adjusted Life Years (DALYs) and Quality-Adjusted Life Years (QALYs), which capture life expectancy and quality of the remaining life-years, are applied in a new method to measure socioeconomic impacts related to health. A 7-step methodology estimating the impact of health interventions based on DALYs, QALYs and functioning changes is presented. It relates the latter (1) to the EQ-5D-5L questionnaire (2) to automatically calculate the health status before and after the intervention (3). This change of status is represented as a change in quality of life when calculating QALYs gained due to the intervention (4). In order to make an economic assessment, QALYs gained are converted to DALYs averted (5). Then, by inferring the cost/DALY from the cost associated to the disability in terms of DALYs lost (6) and taking into account the cost of the action, cost savings due to the intervention are calculated (7) as an objective measure of socioeconomic impact. The methodology is implemented in Java. Cases within the framework of cardiac rehabilitation processes are analyzed and the calculations are based on 200 patients who underwent different cardiac-rehabilitation processes. Results show that these interventions result, on average, in a gain in QALYs of 0.6 and a cost savings of 8,000 €. PMID:24284349

  17. Incorporating Learning Characteristics into Automatic Essay Scoring Models: What Individual Differences and Linguistic Features Tell Us about Writing Quality

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Crossley, Scott A.; Allen, Laura K.; Snow, Erica L.; McNamara, Danielle S.

    2016-01-01

    This study investigates a novel approach to automatically assessing essay quality that combines natural language processing approaches that assess text features with approaches that assess individual differences in writers such as demographic information, standardized test scores, and survey results. The results demonstrate that combining text…

  18. Automatic image assessment from facial attributes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ptucha, Raymond; Kloosterman, David; Mittelstaedt, Brian; Loui, Alexander

    2013-03-01

    Personal consumer photography collections often contain photos captured by numerous devices stored both locally and via online services. The task of gathering, organizing, and assembling still and video assets in preparation for sharing with others can be quite challenging. Current commercial photobook applications are mostly manual-based requiring significant user interactions. To assist the consumer in organizing these assets, we propose an automatic method to assign a fitness score to each asset, whereby the top scoring assets are used for product creation. Our method uses cues extracted from analyzing pixel data, metadata embedded in the file, as well as ancillary tags or online comments. When a face occurs in an image, its features have a dominating influence on both aesthetic and compositional properties of the displayed image. As such, this paper will emphasize the contributions faces have on affecting the overall fitness score of an image. To understand consumer preference, we conducted a psychophysical study that spanned 27 judges, 5,598 faces, and 2,550 images. Preferences on a per-face and per-image basis were independently gathered to train our classifiers. We describe how to use machine learning techniques to merge differing facial attributes into a single classifier. Our novel methods of facial weighting, fusion of facial attributes, and dimensionality reduction produce stateof- the-art results suitable for commercial applications.

  19. Water Quality Assessment and Management

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Overview of Clean Water Act (CWA) restoration framework including; water quality standards, monitoring/assessment, reporting water quality status, TMDL development, TMDL implementation (point & nonpoint source control)

  20. On Automatic Assessment and Conceptual Understanding

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rasila, Antti; Malinen, Jarmo; Tiitu, Hannu

    2015-01-01

    We consider two complementary aspects of mathematical skills, i.e. "procedural fluency" and "conceptual understanding," from a point of view that is related to modern e-learning environments and computer-based assessment. Pedagogical background of teaching mathematics is discussed, and it is proposed that the traditional book…

  1. Automatic Summary Assessment for Intelligent Tutoring Systems

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    He, Yulan; Hui, Siu Cheung; Quan, Tho Thanh

    2009-01-01

    Summary writing is an important part of many English Language Examinations. As grading students' summary writings is a very time-consuming task, computer-assisted assessment will help teachers carry out the grading more effectively. Several techniques such as latent semantic analysis (LSA), n-gram co-occurrence and BLEU have been proposed to…

  2. Automatically Assessing Graph-Based Diagrams

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Thomas, Pete; Smith, Neil; Waugh, Kevin

    2008-01-01

    To date there has been very little work on the machine understanding of imprecise diagrams, such as diagrams drawn by students in response to assessment questions. Imprecise diagrams exhibit faults such as missing, extraneous and incorrectly formed elements. The semantics of imprecise diagrams are difficult to determine. While there have been…

  3. Investigating Prompt Difficulty in an Automatically Scored Speaking Performance Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cox, Troy L.

    2013-01-01

    Speaking assessments for second language learners have traditionally been expensive to administer because of the cost of rating the speech samples. To reduce the cost, many researchers are investigating the potential of using automatic speech recognition (ASR) as a means to score examinee responses to open-ended prompts. This study examined the…

  4. Automatic personality assessment through social media language.

    PubMed

    Park, Gregory; Schwartz, H Andrew; Eichstaedt, Johannes C; Kern, Margaret L; Kosinski, Michal; Stillwell, David J; Ungar, Lyle H; Seligman, Martin E P

    2015-06-01

    Language use is a psychologically rich, stable individual difference with well-established correlations to personality. We describe a method for assessing personality using an open-vocabulary analysis of language from social media. We compiled the written language from 66,732 Facebook users and their questionnaire-based self-reported Big Five personality traits, and then we built a predictive model of personality based on their language. We used this model to predict the 5 personality factors in a separate sample of 4,824 Facebook users, examining (a) convergence with self-reports of personality at the domain- and facet-level; (b) discriminant validity between predictions of distinct traits; (c) agreement with informant reports of personality; (d) patterns of correlations with external criteria (e.g., number of friends, political attitudes, impulsiveness); and (e) test-retest reliability over 6-month intervals. Results indicated that language-based assessments can constitute valid personality measures: they agreed with self-reports and informant reports of personality, added incremental validity over informant reports, adequately discriminated between traits, exhibited patterns of correlations with external criteria similar to those found with self-reported personality, and were stable over 6-month intervals. Analysis of predictive language can provide rich portraits of the mental life associated with traits. This approach can complement and extend traditional methods, providing researchers with an additional measure that can quickly and cheaply assess large groups of participants with minimal burden.

  5. Automatic, computer-based speech assessment on edentulous patients with and without complete dentures - preliminary results.

    PubMed

    Stelzle, F; Ugrinovic, B; Knipfer, C; Bocklet, T; Nöth, E; Schuster, M; Eitner, S; Seiss, M; Nkenke, E

    2010-03-01

    Dental rehabilitation of edentulous patients with complete dentures includes not only aesthetics and mastication of food, but also speech quality. It was the aim of this study to introduce and validate a computer-based speech recognition system (ASR) for automatic speech assessment in edentulous patients after dental rehabilitation with complete dentures. To examine the impact of dentures on speech production, the speech outcome of edentulous patients with and without complete dentures was compared. Twenty-eight patients reading a standardized text were recorded twice - with and without their complete dentures in situ. A control group of 40 healthy subjects with natural dentition was recorded under the same conditions. Speech quality was evaluated by means of a polyphone-based ASR according to the percentage of the word accuracy (WA). Speech acceptability assessment by expert listeners and the automatic rating of the WA by the ASR showed a high correlation (corr = 0.71). Word accuracy was significantly reduced in edentulous speakers (55.42 +/- 13.1) compared to the control group's WA (69.79 +/- 10.6). On the other hand, wearing complete dentures significantly increased the WA of the edentulous patients (60.00 +/- 15.6). Speech production quality is significantly reduced after complete loss of teeth. Reconstitution of speech production quality is an important part of dental rehabilitation and can be improved for edentulous patients by means of complete dentures. The ASR has proven to be a useful and easily applicable tool for automatic speech assessment in a standardized way.

  6. Semi-automatic semantic annotation of PubMed queries: a study on quality, efficiency, satisfaction.

    PubMed

    Névéol, Aurélie; Islamaj Doğan, Rezarta; Lu, Zhiyong

    2011-04-01

    Information processing algorithms require significant amounts of annotated data for training and testing. The availability of such data is often hindered by the complexity and high cost of production. In this paper, we investigate the benefits of a state-of-the-art tool to help with the semantic annotation of a large set of biomedical queries. Seven annotators were recruited to annotate a set of 10,000 PubMed® queries with 16 biomedical and bibliographic categories. About half of the queries were annotated from scratch, while the other half were automatically pre-annotated and manually corrected. The impact of the automatic pre-annotations was assessed on several aspects of the task: time, number of actions, annotator satisfaction, inter-annotator agreement, quality and number of the resulting annotations. The analysis of annotation results showed that the number of required hand annotations is 28.9% less when using pre-annotated results from automatic tools. As a result, the overall annotation time was substantially lower when pre-annotations were used, while inter-annotator agreement was significantly higher. In addition, there was no statistically significant difference in the semantic distribution or number of annotations produced when pre-annotations were used. The annotated query corpus is freely available to the research community. This study shows that automatic pre-annotations are found helpful by most annotators. Our experience suggests using an automatic tool to assist large-scale manual annotation projects. This helps speed-up the annotation time and improve annotation consistency while maintaining high quality of the final annotations.

  7. Portfolio Assessment and Quality Teaching

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kim, Youb; Yazdian, Lisa Sensale

    2014-01-01

    Our article focuses on using portfolio assessment to craft quality teaching. Extant research literature on portfolio assessment suggests that the primary purpose of assessment is to serve learning, and portfolio assessments facilitate the process of making linkages among assessment, curriculum, and student learning (Asp, 2000; Bergeron, Wermuth,…

  8. The Southeast Stream Quality Assessment

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Van Metre, Peter C.; Journey, Celeste

    2014-01-01

    In 2014, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) National Water-Quality Assessment Program (NAWQA) is assessing stream quality across the Piedmont and southern Appalachian Mountains in the southeastern United States. The goal of the Southeast Stream Quality Assessment (SESQA) is to characterize multiple water-quality factors that are stressors to aquatic life—contaminants, nutrients, sediment, and streamflow alteration—and the relation of these stressors to ecological conditions in streams throughout the region. Findings will provide communities and policymakers with information on which human and environmental factors are the most critical in controlling stream quality and, thus, provide insights about possible approaches to protect or improve stream quality. The SESQA study will be the second regional study by the NAWQA program, and it will be of similar design and scope as the Midwest Stream Quality Assessment conducted in 2013 (Van Metre and others, 2012).

  9. Reliability and validity of the Automatic Cognitive Assessment Delivery (ACAD).

    PubMed

    Di Rosa, Elisa; Hannigan, Caoimhe; Brennan, Sabina; Reilly, Richard; Rapčan, Viliam; Robertson, Ian H

    2014-01-01

    IN THIS STUDY WE EVALUATED RELIABILITY AND VALIDITY OF THE AUTOMATIC COGNITIVE ASSESSMENT DELIVERY (ACAD): a short computerized battery composed by memory and attention tests, delivered online, and designed primarily for the elderly. Reliability was examined with a test-retest design and validity was assessed by means of comparison with standard neuropsychological tests. Older (N = 32) and young adult participants (N = 21) were involved. We found that the ACAD is free from any practice effect. Test-retest reliability was confirmed via significant correlations and high percentage agreements between the scores of three repeated assessments. ACAD scores were lower for older than for young adult participants and correlated significantly with the standardized measures of memory and attention. Results demonstrate that the ACAD battery provides a reliable and valid measure of both immediate and delayed recognition memory and sustained attention, and may be useful for convenient and efficient cognitive assessment and monitoring in older adults.

  10. Deep Aesthetic Quality Assessment With Semantic Information.

    PubMed

    Kao, Yueying; He, Ran; Huang, Kaiqi

    2017-03-01

    Human beings often assess the aesthetic quality of an image coupled with the identification of the image's semantic content. This paper addresses the correlation issue between automatic aesthetic quality assessment and semantic recognition. We cast the assessment problem as the main task among a multi-task deep model, and argue that semantic recognition task offers the key to address this problem. Based on convolutional neural networks, we employ a single and simple multi-task framework to efficiently utilize the supervision of aesthetic and semantic labels. A correlation item between these two tasks is further introduced to the framework by incorporating the inter-task relationship learning. This item not only provides some useful insight about the correlation but also improves assessment accuracy of the aesthetic task. In particular, an effective strategy is developed to keep a balance between the two tasks, which facilitates to optimize the parameters of the framework. Extensive experiments on the challenging Aesthetic Visual Analysis dataset and Photo.net dataset validate the importance of semantic recognition in aesthetic quality assessment, and demonstrate that multitask deep models can discover an effective aesthetic representation to achieve the state-of-the-art results.

  11. Automatic cloud coverage assessment of Formosat-2 image

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hsu, Kuo-Hsien

    2011-11-01

    Formosat-2 satellite equips with the high-spatial-resolution (2m ground sampling distance) remote sensing instrument. It has been being operated on the daily-revisiting mission orbit by National Space organization (NSPO) of Taiwan since May 21 2004. NSPO has also serving as one of the ground receiving stations for daily processing the received Formosat- 2 images. The current cloud coverage assessment of Formosat-2 image for NSPO Image Processing System generally consists of two major steps. Firstly, an un-supervised K-means method is used for automatically estimating the cloud statistic of Formosat-2 image. Secondly, manual estimation of cloud coverage from Formosat-2 image is processed by manual examination. Apparently, a more accurate Automatic Cloud Coverage Assessment (ACCA) method certainly increases the efficiency of processing step 2 with a good prediction of cloud statistic. In this paper, mainly based on the research results from Chang et al, Irish, and Gotoh, we propose a modified Formosat-2 ACCA method which considered pre-processing and post-processing analysis. For pre-processing analysis, cloud statistic is determined by using un-supervised K-means classification, Sobel's method, Otsu's method, non-cloudy pixels reexamination, and cross-band filter method. Box-Counting fractal method is considered as a post-processing tool to double check the results of pre-processing analysis for increasing the efficiency of manual examination.

  12. Irrigation water quality assessments

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Increasing demands on fresh water supplies by municipal and industrial users means decreased fresh water availability for irrigated agriculture in semi arid and arid regions. There is potential for agricultural use of treated wastewaters and low quality waters for irrigation but this will require co...

  13. Automatic portion estimation and visual refinement in mobile dietary assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Woo, Insoo; Otsmo, Karl; Kim, SungYe; Ebert, David S.; Delp, Edward J.; Boushey, Carol J.

    2010-01-01

    As concern for obesity grows, the need for automated and accurate methods to monitor nutrient intake becomes essential as dietary intake provides a valuable basis for managing dietary imbalance. Moreover, as mobile devices with built-in cameras have become ubiquitous, one potential means of monitoring dietary intake is photographing meals using mobile devices and having an automatic estimate of the nutrient contents returned. One of the challenging problems of the image-based dietary assessment is the accurate estimation of food portion size from a photograph taken with a mobile digital camera. In this work, we describe a method to automatically calculate portion size of a variety of foods through volume estimation using an image. These "portion volumes" utilize camera parameter estimation and model reconstruction to determine the volume of food items, from which nutritional content is then extrapolated. In this paper, we describe our initial results of accuracy evaluation using real and simulated meal images and demonstrate the potential of our approach.

  14. Institutional Consequences of Quality Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Joao Rosa, Maria; Tavares, Diana; Amaral, Alberto

    2006-01-01

    This paper analyses the opinions of Portuguese university rectors and academics on the quality assessment system and its consequences at the institutional level. The results obtained show that university staff (rectors and academics, with more of the former than the latter) held optimistic views of the positive consequences of quality assessment…

  15. Quality assessment of urban environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ovsiannikova, T. Y.; Nikolaenko, M. N.

    2015-01-01

    This paper is dedicated to the research applicability of quality management problems of construction products. It is offered to expand quality management borders in construction, transferring its principles to urban systems as economic systems of higher level, which qualitative characteristics are substantially defined by quality of construction product. Buildings and structures form spatial-material basis of cities and the most important component of life sphere - urban environment. Authors justify the need for the assessment of urban environment quality as an important factor of social welfare and life quality in urban areas. The authors suggest definition of a term "urban environment". The methodology of quality assessment of urban environment is based on integrated approach which includes the system analysis of all factors and application of both quantitative methods of assessment (calculation of particular and integrated indicators) and qualitative methods (expert estimates and surveys). The authors propose the system of indicators, characterizing quality of the urban environment. This indicators fall into four classes. The authors show the methodology of their definition. The paper presents results of quality assessment of urban environment for several Siberian regions and comparative analysis of these results.

  16. Automatism

    PubMed Central

    McCaldon, R. J.

    1964-01-01

    Individuals can carry out complex activity while in a state of impaired consciousness, a condition termed “automatism”. Consciousness must be considered from both an organic and a psychological aspect, because impairment of consciousness may occur in both ways. Automatism may be classified as normal (hypnosis), organic (temporal lobe epilepsy), psychogenic (dissociative fugue) or feigned. Often painstaking clinical investigation is necessary to clarify the diagnosis. There is legal precedent for assuming that all crimes must embody both consciousness and will. Jurists are loath to apply this principle without reservation, as this would necessitate acquittal and release of potentially dangerous individuals. However, with the sole exception of the defence of insanity, there is at present no legislation to prohibit release without further investigation of anyone acquitted of a crime on the grounds of “automatism”. PMID:14199824

  17. Assessment of automatic ligand building in ARP/wARP

    PubMed Central

    Evrard, Guillaume X.; Langer, Gerrit G.; Perrakis, Anastassis; Lamzin, Victor S.

    2007-01-01

    The efficiency of the ligand-building module of ARP/wARP version 6.1 has been assessed through extensive tests on a large variety of protein–ligand complexes from the PDB, as available from the Uppsala Electron Density Server. Ligand building in ARP/wARP involves two main steps: automatic identification of the location of the ligand and the actual construction of its atomic model. The first step is most successful for large ligands. The second step, ligand construction, is more powerful with X-ray data at high resolution and ligands of small to medium size. Both steps are successful for ligands with low to moderate atomic displacement parameters. The results highlight the strengths and weaknesses of both the method of ligand building and the large-scale validation procedure and help to identify means of further improvement. PMID:17164533

  18. Assessment of automatic ligand building in ARP/wARP.

    PubMed

    Evrard, Guillaume X; Langer, Gerrit G; Perrakis, Anastassis; Lamzin, Victor S

    2007-01-01

    The efficiency of the ligand-building module of ARP/wARP version 6.1 has been assessed through extensive tests on a large variety of protein-ligand complexes from the PDB, as available from the Uppsala Electron Density Server. Ligand building in ARP/wARP involves two main steps: automatic identification of the location of the ligand and the actual construction of its atomic model. The first step is most successful for large ligands. The second step, ligand construction, is more powerful with X-ray data at high resolution and ligands of small to medium size. Both steps are successful for ligands with low to moderate atomic displacement parameters. The results highlight the strengths and weaknesses of both the method of ligand building and the large-scale validation procedure and help to identify means of further improvement.

  19. The Northeast Stream Quality Assessment

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Van Metre, Peter C.; Riva-Murray, Karen; Coles, James F.

    2016-04-22

    In 2016, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) National Water-Quality Assessment (NAWQA) is assessing stream quality in the northeastern United States. The goal of the Northeast Stream Quality Assessment (NESQA) is to assess the quality of streams in the region by characterizing multiple water-quality factors that are stressors to aquatic life and evaluating the relation between these stressors and biological communities. The focus of NESQA in 2016 will be on the effects of urbanization and agriculture on stream quality in all or parts of eight states: Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Vermont.Findings will provide the public and policymakers with information about the most critical factors affecting stream quality, thus providing insights about possible approaches to protect the health of streams in the region. The NESQA study will be the fourth regional study conducted as part of NAWQA and will be of similar design and scope to the first three, in the Midwest in 2013, the Southeast in 2014, and the Pacific Northwest in 2015 (http://txpub.usgs.gov/RSQA/).

  20. The California stream quality assessment

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Van Metre, Peter C.; Egler, Amanda L.; May, Jason T.

    2017-03-06

    In 2017, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) National Water-Quality Assessment (NAWQA) project is assessing stream quality in coastal California, United States. The USGS California Stream Quality Assessment (CSQA) will sample streams over most of the Central California Foothills and Coastal Mountains ecoregion (modified from Griffith and others, 2016), where rapid urban growth and intensive agriculture in the larger river valleys are raising concerns that stream health is being degraded. Findings will provide the public and policy-makers with information regarding which human and natural factors are the most critical in affecting stream quality and, thus, provide insights about possible approaches to protect the health of streams in the region.

  1. Automatic graphene transfer system for improved material quality and efficiency.

    PubMed

    Boscá, Alberto; Pedrós, Jorge; Martínez, Javier; Palacios, Tomás; Calle, Fernando

    2016-02-10

    In most applications based on chemical vapor deposition (CVD) graphene, the transfer from the growth to the target substrate is a critical step for the final device performance. Manual procedures are time consuming and depend on handling skills, whereas existing automatic roll-to-roll methods work well for flexible substrates but tend to induce mechanical damage in rigid ones. A new system that automatically transfers CVD graphene to an arbitrary target substrate has been developed. The process is based on the all-fluidic manipulation of the graphene to avoid mechanical damage, strain and contamination, and on the combination of capillary action and electrostatic repulsion between the graphene and its container to ensure a centered sample on top of the target substrate. The improved carrier mobility and yield of the automatically transferred graphene, as compared to that manually transferred, is demonstrated by the optical and electrical characterization of field-effect transistors fabricated on both materials. In particular, 70% higher mobility values, with a 30% decrease in the unintentional doping and a 10% strain reduction are achieved. The system has been developed for lab-scale transfer and proved to be scalable for industrial applications.

  2. Automatic graphene transfer system for improved material quality and efficiency

    PubMed Central

    Boscá, Alberto; Pedrós, Jorge; Martínez, Javier; Palacios, Tomás; Calle, Fernando

    2016-01-01

    In most applications based on chemical vapor deposition (CVD) graphene, the transfer from the growth to the target substrate is a critical step for the final device performance. Manual procedures are time consuming and depend on handling skills, whereas existing automatic roll-to-roll methods work well for flexible substrates but tend to induce mechanical damage in rigid ones. A new system that automatically transfers CVD graphene to an arbitrary target substrate has been developed. The process is based on the all-fluidic manipulation of the graphene to avoid mechanical damage, strain and contamination, and on the combination of capillary action and electrostatic repulsion between the graphene and its container to ensure a centered sample on top of the target substrate. The improved carrier mobility and yield of the automatically transferred graphene, as compared to that manually transferred, is demonstrated by the optical and electrical characterization of field-effect transistors fabricated on both materials. In particular, 70% higher mobility values, with a 30% decrease in the unintentional doping and a 10% strain reduction are achieved. The system has been developed for lab-scale transfer and proved to be scalable for industrial applications. PMID:26860260

  3. SU-E-J-155: Automatic Quantitative Decision Making Metric for 4DCT Image Quality

    SciTech Connect

    Kiely, J Blanco; Olszanski, A; Both, S; White, B; Low, D

    2015-06-15

    Purpose: To develop a quantitative decision making metric for automatically detecting irregular breathing using a large patient population that received phase-sorted 4DCT. Methods: This study employed two patient cohorts. Cohort#1 contained 256 patients who received a phasesorted 4DCT. Cohort#2 contained 86 patients who received three weekly phase-sorted 4DCT scans. A previously published technique used a single abdominal surrogate to calculate the ratio of extreme inhalation tidal volume to normal inhalation tidal volume, referred to as the κ metric. Since a single surrogate is standard for phase-sorted 4DCT in radiation oncology clinical practice, tidal volume was not quantified. Without tidal volume, the absolute κ metric could not be determined, so a relative κ (κrel) metric was defined based on the measured surrogate amplitude instead of tidal volume. Receiver operator characteristic (ROC) curves were used to quantitatively determine the optimal cutoff value (jk) and efficiency cutoff value (τk) of κrel to automatically identify irregular breathing that would reduce the image quality of phase-sorted 4DCT. Discriminatory accuracy (area under the ROC curve) of κrel was calculated by a trapezoidal numeric integration technique. Results: The discriminatory accuracy of ?rel was found to be 0.746. The key values of jk and tk were calculated to be 1.45 and 1.72 respectively. For values of ?rel such that jk≤κrel≤τk, the decision to reacquire the 4DCT would be at the discretion of the physician. This accounted for only 11.9% of the patients in this study. The magnitude of κrel held consistent over 3 weeks for 73% of the patients in cohort#3. Conclusion: The decision making metric, ?rel, was shown to be an accurate classifier of irregular breathing patients in a large patient population. This work provided an automatic quantitative decision making metric to quickly and accurately assess the extent to which irregular breathing is occurring during phase

  4. Assessment of automatic ligand building in ARP/wARP

    SciTech Connect

    Evrard, Guillaume X. Langer, Gerrit G.; Lamzin, Victor S.

    2007-01-01

    The performance of the ligand-building module of the ARP/wARP software suite is assessed through a large-scale test on known protein–ligand complexes. The results provide a detailed benchmark and guidelines for future improvements. The efficiency of the ligand-building module of ARP/wARP version 6.1 has been assessed through extensive tests on a large variety of protein–ligand complexes from the PDB, as available from the Uppsala Electron Density Server. Ligand building in ARP/wARP involves two main steps: automatic identification of the location of the ligand and the actual construction of its atomic model. The first step is most successful for large ligands. The second step, ligand construction, is more powerful with X-ray data at high resolution and ligands of small to medium size. Both steps are successful for ligands with low to moderate atomic displacement parameters. The results highlight the strengths and weaknesses of both the method of ligand building and the large-scale validation procedure and help to identify means of further improvement.

  5. Data Quality Assessment for Maritime Situation Awareness

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Iphar, C.; Napoli, A.; Ray, C.

    2015-08-01

    The Automatic Identification System (AIS) initially designed to ensure maritime security through continuous position reports has been progressively used for many extended objectives. In particular it supports a global monitoring of the maritime domain for various purposes like safety and security but also traffic management, logistics or protection of strategic areas, etc. In this monitoring, data errors, misuse, irregular behaviours at sea, malfeasance mechanisms and bad navigation practices have inevitably emerged either by inattentiveness or voluntary actions in order to circumvent, alter or exploit such a system in the interests of offenders. This paper introduces the AIS system and presents vulnerabilities and data quality assessment for decision making in maritime situational awareness cases. The principles of a novel methodological approach for modelling, analysing and detecting these data errors and falsification are introduced.

  6. A routine quality assurance test for CT automatic exposure control systems.

    PubMed

    Iball, Gareth R; Moore, Alexis C; Crawford, Elizabeth J

    2016-07-01

    The study purpose was to develop and validate a quality assurance test for CT automatic exposure control (AEC) systems based on a set of nested polymethylmethacrylate CTDI phantoms. The test phantom was created by offsetting the 16 cm head phantom within the 32 cm body annulus, thus creating a three part phantom. This was scanned at all acceptance, routine, and some nonroutine quality assurance visits over a period of 45 months, resulting in 115 separate AEC tests on scanners from four manufacturers. For each scan the longitudinal mA modulation pattern was generated and measurements of image noise were made in two annular regions of interest. The scanner displayed CTDIvol and DLP were also recorded. The impact of a range of AEC configurations on dose and image quality were assessed at acceptance testing. For systems that were tested more than once, the percentage of CTDIvol values exceeding 5%, 10%, and 15% deviation from baseline was 23.4%, 12.6%, and 8.1% respectively. Similarly, for the image noise data, deviations greater than 2%, 5%, and 10% from baseline were 26.5%, 5.9%, and 2%, respectively. The majority of CTDIvol and noise deviations greater than 15% and 5%, respectively, could be explained by incorrect phantom setup or protocol selection. Barring these results, CTDIvol deviations of greater than 15% from baseline were found in 0.9% of tests and noise deviations greater than 5% from baseline were found in 1% of tests. The phantom was shown to be sensitive to changes in AEC setup, including the use of 3D, longitudinal or rotational tube current modulation. This test methodology allows for continuing performance assessment of CT AEC systems, and we recommend that this test should become part of routine CT quality assurance programs. Tolerances of ±15% for CTDIvol and ±5% for image noise relative to baseline values should be used. PACS number(s): 87.57.Q.

  7. Automatic orbital GTAW welding: Highest quality welds for tomorrow's high-performance systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Henon, B. K.

    1985-01-01

    Automatic orbital gas tungsten arc welding (GTAW) or TIG welding is certain to play an increasingly prominent role in tomorrow's technology. The welds are of the highest quality and the repeatability of automatic weldings is vastly superior to that of manual welding. Since less heat is applied to the weld during automatic welding than manual welding, there is less change in the metallurgical properties of the parent material. The possibility of accurate control and the cleanliness of the automatic GTAW welding process make it highly suitable to the welding of the more exotic and expensive materials which are now widely used in the aerospace and hydrospace industries. Titanium, stainless steel, Inconel, and Incoloy, as well as, aluminum can all be welded to the highest quality specifications automatically. Automatic orbital GTAW equipment is available for the fusion butt welding of tube-to-tube, as well as, tube to autobuttweld fittings. The same equipment can also be used for the fusion butt welding of up to 6 inch pipe with a wall thickness of up to 0.154 inches.

  8. Assessing risks to ecosystem quality

    SciTech Connect

    Barnthouse, L.W.

    1995-12-31

    Ecosystems are not organisms. Because ecosystems do not reproduce, grow old or sick, and die, the term ecosystem health is somewhat misleading and perhaps should not be used. A more useful concept is ``ecosystem quality,`` which denotes a set of desirable ecosystem characteristics defined in terms of species composition, productivity, size/condition of specific populations, or other measurable properties. The desired quality of an ecosystem may be pristine, as in a nature preserve, or highly altered by man, as in a managed forest or navigational waterway. ``Sustainable development`` implies that human activities that influence ecosystem quality should be managed so that high-quality ecosystems are maintained for future generations. In sustainability-based environmental management, the focus is on maintaining or improving ecosystem quality, not on restricting discharges or requiring particular waste treatment technologies. This approach requires management of chemical impacts to be integrated with management of other sources of stress such as erosion, eutrophication, and direct human exploitation. Environmental scientists must (1) work with decision makers and the public to define ecosystem quality goals, (2) develop corresponding measures of ecosystem quality, (3) diagnose causes for departures from desired states, and (4) recommend appropriate restoration actions, if necessary. Environmental toxicology and chemical risk assessment are necessary for implementing the above framework, but they are clearly not sufficient. This paper reviews the state-of-the science relevant to sustaining the quality of aquatic ecosystems. Using the specific example of a reservoir in eastern Tennessee, the paper attempts to define roles for ecotoxicology and risk assessment in each step of the management process.

  9. Network design and quality checks in automatic orientation of close-range photogrammetric blocks.

    PubMed

    Dall'Asta, Elisa; Thoeni, Klaus; Santise, Marina; Forlani, Gianfranco; Giacomini, Anna; Roncella, Riccardo

    2015-04-03

    Due to the recent improvements of automatic measurement procedures in photogrammetry, multi-view 3D reconstruction technologies are becoming a favourite survey tool. Rapidly widening structure-from-motion (SfM) software packages offer significantly easier image processing workflows than traditional photogrammetry packages. However, while most orientation and surface reconstruction strategies will almost always succeed in any given task, estimating the quality of the result is, to some extent, still an open issue. An assessment of the precision and reliability of block orientation is necessary and should be included in every processing pipeline. Such a need was clearly felt from the results of close-range photogrammetric surveys of in situ full-scale and laboratory-scale experiments. In order to study the impact of the block control and the camera network design on the block orientation accuracy, a series of Monte Carlo simulations was performed. Two image block configurations were investigated: a single pseudo-normal strip and a circular highly-convergent block. The influence of surveying and data processing choices, such as the number and accuracy of the ground control points, autofocus and camera calibration was investigated. The research highlights the most significant aspects and processes to be taken into account for adequate in situ and laboratory surveys, when modern SfM software packages are used, and evaluates their effect on the quality of the results of the surface reconstruction.

  10. Network Design and Quality Checks in Automatic Orientation of Close-Range Photogrammetric Blocks

    PubMed Central

    Dall’Asta, Elisa; Thoeni, Klaus; Santise, Marina; Forlani, Gianfranco; Giacomini, Anna; Roncella, Riccardo

    2015-01-01

    Due to the recent improvements of automatic measurement procedures in photogrammetry, multi-view 3D reconstruction technologies are becoming a favourite survey tool. Rapidly widening structure-from-motion (SfM) software packages offer significantly easier image processing workflows than traditional photogrammetry packages. However, while most orientation and surface reconstruction strategies will almost always succeed in any given task, estimating the quality of the result is, to some extent, still an open issue. An assessment of the precision and reliability of block orientation is necessary and should be included in every processing pipeline. Such a need was clearly felt from the results of close-range photogrammetric surveys of in situ full-scale and laboratory-scale experiments. In order to study the impact of the block control and the camera network design on the block orientation accuracy, a series of Monte Carlo simulations was performed. Two image block configurations were investigated: a single pseudo-normal strip and a circular highly-convergent block. The influence of surveying and data processing choices, such as the number and accuracy of the ground control points, autofocus and camera calibration was investigated. The research highlights the most significant aspects and processes to be taken into account for adequate in situ and laboratory surveys, when modern SfM software packages are used, and evaluates their effect on the quality of the results of the surface reconstruction. PMID:25855036

  11. Geometric assessment of image quality using digital image registration techniques

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tisdale, G. E.

    1976-01-01

    Image registration techniques were developed to perform a geometric quality assessment of multispectral and multitemporal image pairs. Based upon LANDSAT tapes, accuracies to a small fraction of a pixel were demonstrated. Because it is insensitive to the choice of registration areas, the technique is well suited to performance in an automatic system. It may be implemented at megapixel-per-second rates using a commercial minicomputer in combination with a special purpose digital preprocessor.

  12. The Midwest Stream Quality Assessment

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    ,

    2012-01-01

    In 2013, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) National Water-Quality Assessment Program (NAWQA) and USGS Columbia Environmental Research Center (CERC) will be collaborating with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) National Rivers and Streams Assessment (NRSA) to assess stream quality across the Midwestern United States. The sites selected for this study are a subset of the larger NRSA, implemented by the EPA, States and Tribes to sample flowing waters across the United States (http://water.epa.gov/type/rsl/monitoring/riverssurvey/index.cfm). The goals are to characterize water-quality stressors—contaminants, nutrients, and sediment—and ecological conditions in streams throughout the Midwest and to determine the relative effects of these stressors on aquatic organisms in the streams. Findings will contribute useful information for communities and policymakers by identifying which human and environmental factors are the most critical in controlling stream quality. This collaborative study enhances information provided to the public and policymakers and minimizes costs by leveraging and sharing data gathered under existing programs. In the spring and early summer, NAWQA will sample streams weekly for contaminants, nutrients, and sediment. During the same time period, CERC will test sediment and water samples for toxicity, deploy time-integrating samplers, and measure reproductive effects and biomarkers of contaminant exposure in fish or amphibians. NRSA will sample sites once during the summer to assess ecological and habitat conditions in the streams by collecting data on algal, macroinvertebrate, and fish communities and collecting detailed physical-habitat measurements. Study-team members from all three programs will work in collaboration with USGS Water Science Centers and State agencies on study design, execution of sampling and analysis, and reporting.

  13. Automatic Coding of Short Text Responses via Clustering in Educational Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zehner, Fabian; Sälzer, Christine; Goldhammer, Frank

    2016-01-01

    Automatic coding of short text responses opens new doors in assessment. We implemented and integrated baseline methods of natural language processing and statistical modelling by means of software components that are available under open licenses. The accuracy of automatic text coding is demonstrated by using data collected in the "Programme…

  14. Orion Entry Handling Qualities Assessments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bihari, B.; Tiggers, M.; Strahan, A.; Gonzalez, R.; Sullivan, K.; Stephens, J. P.; Hart, J.; Law, H., III; Bilimoria, K.; Bailey, R.

    2011-01-01

    The Orion Command Module (CM) is a capsule designed to bring crew back from the International Space Station (ISS), the moon and beyond. The atmospheric entry portion of the flight is deigned to be flown in autopilot mode for nominal situations. However, there exists the possibility for the crew to take over manual control in off-nominal situations. In these instances, the spacecraft must meet specific handling qualities criteria. To address these criteria two separate assessments of the Orion CM s entry Handling Qualities (HQ) were conducted at NASA s Johnson Space Center (JSC) using the Cooper-Harper scale (Cooper & Harper, 1969). These assessments were conducted in the summers of 2008 and 2010 using the Advanced NASA Technology Architecture for Exploration Studies (ANTARES) six degree of freedom, high fidelity Guidance, Navigation, and Control (GN&C) simulation. This paper will address the specifics of the handling qualities criteria, the vehicle configuration, the scenarios flown, the simulation background and setup, crew interfaces and displays, piloting techniques, ratings and crew comments, pre- and post-fight briefings, lessons learned and changes made to improve the overall system performance. The data collection tools, methods, data reduction and output reports will also be discussed. The objective of the 2008 entry HQ assessment was to evaluate the handling qualities of the CM during a lunar skip return. A lunar skip entry case was selected because it was considered the most demanding of all bank control scenarios. Even though skip entry is not planned to be flown manually, it was hypothesized that if a pilot could fly the harder skip entry case, then they could also fly a simpler loads managed or ballistic (constant bank rate command) entry scenario. In addition, with the evaluation set-up of multiple tasks within the entry case, handling qualities ratings collected in the evaluation could be used to assess other scenarios such as the constant bank angle

  15. Automatic intelligibility assessment of pathologic speech over the telephone.

    PubMed

    Haderlein, Tino; Nöth, Elmar; Batliner, Anton; Eysholdt, Ulrich; Rosanowski, Frank

    2011-12-01

    Objective assessment of intelligibility on the telephone is desirable for voice and speech assessment and rehabilitation. A total of 82 patients after partial laryngectomy read a standardized text which was synchronously recorded by a headset and via telephone. Five experienced raters assessed intelligibility perceptually on a five-point scale. Objective evaluation was performed by support vector regression on the word accuracy (WA) and word correctness (WR) of a speech recognition system, and a set of prosodic features. WA and WR alone exhibited correlations to human evaluation between |r| = 0.57 and |r| = 0.75. The correlation was r = 0.79 for headset and r = 0.86 for telephone recordings when prosodic features and WR were combined. The best feature subset was optimal for both signal qualities. It consists of WR, the average duration of the silent pauses before a word, the standard deviation of the fundamental frequency on the entire sample, the standard deviation of jitter, and the ratio of the durations of the voiced sections and the entire recording.

  16. Assessing Children's Home Language Environments Using Automatic Speech Recognition Technology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Greenwood, Charles R.; Thiemann-Bourque, Kathy; Walker, Dale; Buzhardt, Jay; Gilkerson, Jill

    2011-01-01

    The purpose of this research was to replicate and extend some of the findings of Hart and Risley using automatic speech processing instead of human transcription of language samples. The long-term goal of this work is to make the current approach to speech processing possible by researchers and clinicians working on a daily basis with families and…

  17. Automatically Assessing Lexical Sophistication: Indices, Tools, Findings, and Application

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kyle, Kristopher; Crossley, Scott A.

    2015-01-01

    This study explores the construct of lexical sophistication and its applications for measuring second language lexical and speaking proficiency. In doing so, the study introduces the Tool for the Automatic Analysis of LExical Sophistication (TAALES), which calculates text scores for 135 classic and newly developed lexical indices related to word…

  18. Automatic Rotational Sky Quality Meter (R-SQM) Design and Software for Astronomical Observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dogan, E.; Ozbaldan, E. E.; Shameoni, Niaei M.; Yesilyaprak, C.

    2016-12-01

    We have presented the new design of Sky Quality Meter (SQM) device that is an automatic rotational model of sky quality meter (R-SQM) carried out by DAG (Eastern Anatolia Observatory) Technical Team. R-SQM is required for determining the long-term changes of sky quality of an astronomical observatory and consists of four SQM devices mounted on a rotating shaft with different angles for scanning all sky. This system is controlled by a Raspberry Pi control card and a step motor with its driver and a special software.

  19. Higher Education Quality Assessment Model: Towards Achieving Educational Quality Standard

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Noaman, Amin Y.; Ragab, Abdul Hamid M.; Madbouly, Ayman I.; Khedra, Ahmed M.; Fayoumi, Ayman G.

    2017-01-01

    This paper presents a developed higher education quality assessment model (HEQAM) that can be applied for enhancement of university services. This is because there is no universal unified quality standard model that can be used to assess the quality criteria of higher education institutes. The analytical hierarchy process is used to identify the…

  20. Carbon Nanotube Material Quality Assessment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yowell, Leonard; Arepalli, Sivaram; Sosa, Edward; Niolaev, Pavel; Gorelik, Olga

    2006-01-01

    The nanomaterial activities at NASA Johnson Space Center focus on carbon nanotube production, characterization and their applications for aerospace systems. Single wall carbon nanotubes are produced by arc and laser methods. Characterization of the nanotube material is performed using the NASA JSC protocol developed by combining analytical techniques of SEM, TEM, UV-VIS-NIR absorption, Raman, and TGA. A possible addition of other techniques such as XPS, and ICP to the existing protocol will be discussed. Changes in the quality of the material collected in different regions of the arc and laser production chambers is assessed using the original JSC protocol. The observed variations indicate different growth conditions in different regions of the production chambers.

  1. Retinal image quality assessment based on image clarity and content

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abdel-Hamid, Lamiaa; El-Rafei, Ahmed; El-Ramly, Salwa; Michelson, Georg; Hornegger, Joachim

    2016-09-01

    Retinal image quality assessment (RIQA) is an essential step in automated screening systems to avoid misdiagnosis caused by processing poor quality retinal images. A no-reference transform-based RIQA algorithm is introduced that assesses images based on five clarity and content quality issues: sharpness, illumination, homogeneity, field definition, and content. Transform-based RIQA algorithms have the advantage of considering retinal structures while being computationally inexpensive. Wavelet-based features are proposed to evaluate the sharpness and overall illumination of the images. A retinal saturation channel is designed and used along with wavelet-based features for homogeneity assessment. The presented sharpness and illumination features are utilized to assure adequate field definition, whereas color information is used to exclude nonretinal images. Several publicly available datasets of varying quality grades are utilized to evaluate the feature sets resulting in area under the receiver operating characteristic curve above 0.99 for each of the individual feature sets. The overall quality is assessed by a classifier that uses the collective features as an input vector. The classification results show superior performance of the algorithm in comparison to other methods from literature. Moreover, the algorithm addresses efficiently and comprehensively various quality issues and is suitable for automatic screening systems.

  2. Automatic Extraction and Coordination of Audit Data and Features for Intrusion and Damage Assessment

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2006-03-31

    03/31/06 Final Project Report 01/01/03-03/31/06 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER Automatic Extraction and Coordination of Audit Data and...Features for Intrusion and Damage Assessment 5b. GRANTNUMBER F49620-03-1-0109 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT NUMBER 6. AUTHOR(S) 5d. PROJECT NUMBER Dr. Nong Ye 5e...assessing the damage through automatic extraction and coordination of audit data and features for intrusion and damage assessment. In this project , we

  3. Towards Quality Assessment in an EFL Programme

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ali, Holi Ibrahim Holi; Al Ajmi, Ahmed Ali Saleh

    2013-01-01

    Assessment is central in education and the teaching-learning process. This study attempts to explore the perspectives and views about quality assessment among teachers of English as a Foreign Language (EFL), and to find ways of promoting quality assessment. Quantitative methodology was used to collect data. To answer the study questions, a…

  4. Students' Feedback Preferences: How Do Students React to Timely and Automatically Generated Assessment Feedback?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bayerlein, Leopold

    2014-01-01

    This study assesses whether or not undergraduate and postgraduate accounting students at an Australian university differentiate between timely feedback and extremely timely feedback, and whether or not the replacement of manually written formal assessment feedback with automatically generated feedback influences students' perception of feedback…

  5. The tool for the automatic analysis of text cohesion (TAACO): Automatic assessment of local, global, and text cohesion.

    PubMed

    Crossley, Scott A; Kyle, Kristopher; McNamara, Danielle S

    2016-12-01

    This study introduces the Tool for the Automatic Analysis of Cohesion (TAACO), a freely available text analysis tool that is easy to use, works on most operating systems (Windows, Mac, and Linux), is housed on a user's hard drive (rather than having an Internet interface), allows for the batch processing of text files, and incorporates over 150 classic and recently developed indices related to text cohesion. The study validates TAACO by investigating how its indices related to local, global, and overall text cohesion can predict expert judgments of text coherence and essay quality. The findings of this study provide predictive validation of TAACO and support the notion that expert judgments of text coherence and quality are either negatively correlated or not predicted by local and overall text cohesion indices, but are positively predicted by global indices of cohesion. Combined, these findings provide supporting evidence that coherence for expert raters is a property of global cohesion and not of local cohesion, and that expert ratings of text quality are positively related to global cohesion.

  6. Healthcare quality maturity assessment model based on quality drivers.

    PubMed

    Ramadan, Nadia; Arafeh, Mazen

    2016-04-18

    Purpose - Healthcare providers differ in their readiness and maturity levels regarding quality and quality management systems applications. The purpose of this paper is to serve as a useful quantitative quality maturity-level assessment tool for healthcare organizations. Design/methodology/approach - The model proposes five quality maturity levels (chaotic, primitive, structured, mature and proficient) based on six quality drivers: top management, people, operations, culture, quality focus and accreditation. Findings - Healthcare managers can apply the model to identify the status quo, quality shortcomings and evaluating ongoing progress. Practical implications - The model has been incorporated in an interactive Excel worksheet that visually displays the quality maturity-level risk meter. The tool has been applied successfully to local hospitals. Originality/value - The proposed six quality driver scales appear to measure healthcare provider maturity levels on a single quality meter.

  7. An industrial quality automatic resonator alignment system for a 20 kW CO 2 laser

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Akitt, D. R.; Seguin, H. J. J.; Sellathamby, C. V.; Rogozinski, K.

    A limiting feature in high-power laser technology which has surfaced in recent years is alignment instability induced by thermally generated distortions of the optical hardware and phase perturbations of the gain media under elevated power loading. In an effort to ameliorate these problems, a study was initiated to ascertain the feasibility of utilizing a feedback control system both to monitor and align the resonator optics of a multikilowatt laser; thereby actively preserving optimum mode quality. This papers summarizes the results of this project and outlines the basic approach used to construct a controller which accomplishes fully automatic alignment of both mirrors in an unstable resonator for a 20 kW CO 2 machine. A mathematical model of the control system is presented along with a description of the principles of operation. Data are provided to document the major improvement in device performance achievable using this automatic alignment controller concept.

  8. Assessment and Quality Social Studies

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Savage, Tom V.

    2003-01-01

    Those anonymous individuals who develop high-stakes tests by which educational quality is measured exercise great influence in defining educational quality. In this article, the author examines the impact of high-stakes testing on the welfare of the children and the quality of social studies instruction. He presents the benefits and drawbacks of…

  9. Implementation of a quality control system for the Automatic Weather Stations Network from CPTEC/INPE

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ferreira, A.; Almeida, W. G.

    2007-05-01

    The observations from INPE's Automatic Weather Stations Network are available for free distribution in the CPTEC webpage just after its processing. Because the automated meteorological stations can report in a high temporal frequency and its quantity is growing, they will be more important over the time. To keep the quality of the distributed data and to help the network management it is needed a complex automated quality control system. To meet these objectives we installed in the CPTEC/INPE the quality control system from MADIS (Meteorological Assimilation Data Ingest System). A software developed by the Forecast Systems Laboratory, from NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration). In this paper we describe this QC system and the results.

  10. Towards the Real-Time Evaluation of Collaborative Activities: Integration of an Automatic Rater of Collaboration Quality in the Classroom from the Teacher's Perspective

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chounta, Irene-Angelica; Avouris, Nikolaos

    2016-01-01

    This paper presents the integration of a real time evaluation method of collaboration quality in a monitoring application that supports teachers in class orchestration. The method is implemented as an automatic rater of collaboration quality and studied in a real time scenario of use. We argue that automatic and semi-automatic methods which…

  11. Operation logic and functionality of automatic dose rate and image quality control of conventional fluoroscopy

    SciTech Connect

    Lin, Pei-Jan Paul

    2009-05-15

    New generation of fluoroscopic imaging systems is equipped with spectral shaping filters complemented with sophisticated automatic dose rate and image quality control logic called ''fluoroscopy curve'' or ''trajectory''. Such fluoroscopy curves were implemented first on cardiovascular angiographic imaging systems and are now available on conventional fluoroscopy equipment. This study aims to investigate the control logic operations under the fluoroscopy mode and acquisition mode (equivalent to the legacy spot filming) of a conventional fluoroscopy system typically installed for upper-lower gastrointestinal examinations, interventional endoscopy laboratories, gastrointestinal laboratory, and pain clinics.

  12. Automatic Assessment of the Quality of Group 3 Facsimile Transmission.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1981-05-01

    progressive de toutes les applications suppose la creation d’un support comm’un pour toutes lea Wnormations. tine v~ritable " Banque de donn~es". r...v-6ritable " Banque de donn~es", r~partie sur des rnnypuis de traitement nationaux et r~gianaux. et qui devra rester alimentt~e, mise A jour en perma...uf-an 4"-9 tI cs6 so d’auwjw w ’s em weruo 0 ft. IsN lign retard est. dQoticW 9-!-: -w. A cd upti Is fgure 2 reprilinnte Is wuic courbe dourAMa 14

  13. Quality Assurance using Outlier Detection on an Automatic Segmentation Method for the Cerebellar Peduncles.

    PubMed

    Li, Ke; Ye, Chuyang; Yang, Zhen; Carass, Aaron; Ying, Sarah H; Prince, Jerry L

    2016-02-27

    Cerebellar peduncles (CPs) are white matter tracts connecting the cerebellum to other brain regions. Automatic segmentation methods of the CPs have been proposed for studying their structure and function. Usually the performance of these methods is evaluated by comparing segmentation results with manual delineations (ground truth). However, when a segmentation method is run on new data (for which no ground truth exists) it is highly desirable to efficiently detect and assess algorithm failures so that these cases can be excluded from scientific analysis. In this work, two outlier detection methods aimed to assess the performance of an automatic CP segmentation algorithm are presented. The first one is a univariate non-parametric method using a box-whisker plot. We first categorize automatic segmentation results of a dataset of diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) scans from 48 subjects as either a success or a failure. We then design three groups of features from the image data of nine categorized failures for failure detection. Results show that most of these features can efficiently detect the true failures. The second method-supervised classification-was employed on a larger DTI dataset of 249 manually categorized subjects. Four classifiers-linear discriminant analysis (LDA), logistic regression (LR), support vector machine (SVM), and random forest classification (RFC)-were trained using the designed features and evaluated using a leave-one-out cross validation. Results show that the LR performs worst among the four classifiers and the other three perform comparably, which demonstrates the feasibility of automatically detecting segmentation failures using classification methods.

  14. Quality Assurance using Outlier Detection on an Automatic Segmentation Method for the Cerebellar Peduncles

    PubMed Central

    Li, Ke; Ye, Chuyang; Yang, Zhen; Carass, Aaron; Ying, Sarah H.; Prince, Jerry L.

    2017-01-01

    Cerebellar peduncles (CPs) are white matter tracts connecting the cerebellum to other brain regions. Automatic segmentation methods of the CPs have been proposed for studying their structure and function. Usually the performance of these methods is evaluated by comparing segmentation results with manual delineations (ground truth). However, when a segmentation method is run on new data (for which no ground truth exists) it is highly desirable to efficiently detect and assess algorithm failures so that these cases can be excluded from scientific analysis. In this work, two outlier detection methods aimed to assess the performance of an automatic CP segmentation algorithm are presented. The first one is a univariate non-parametric method using a box-whisker plot. We first categorize automatic segmentation results of a dataset of diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) scans from 48 subjects as either a success or a failure. We then design three groups of features from the image data of nine categorized failures for failure detection. Results show that most of these features can efficiently detect the true failures. The second method—supervised classification—was employed on a larger DTI dataset of 249 manually categorized subjects. Four classifiers—linear discriminant analysis (LDA), logistic regression (LR), support vector machine (SVM), and random forest classification (RFC)—were trained using the designed features and evaluated using a leave-one-out cross validation. Results show that the LR performs worst among the four classifiers and the other three perform comparably, which demonstrates the feasibility of automatically detecting segmentation failures using classification methods. PMID:28203039

  15. Quality assurance using outlier detection on an automatic segmentation method for the cerebellar peduncles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Ke; Ye, Chuyang; Yang, Zhen; Carass, Aaron; Ying, Sarah H.; Prince, Jerry L.

    2016-03-01

    Cerebellar peduncles (CPs) are white matter tracts connecting the cerebellum to other brain regions. Automatic segmentation methods of the CPs have been proposed for studying their structure and function. Usually the performance of these methods is evaluated by comparing segmentation results with manual delineations (ground truth). However, when a segmentation method is run on new data (for which no ground truth exists) it is highly desirable to efficiently detect and assess algorithm failures so that these cases can be excluded from scientific analysis. In this work, two outlier detection methods aimed to assess the performance of an automatic CP segmentation algorithm are presented. The first one is a univariate non-parametric method using a box-whisker plot. We first categorize automatic segmentation results of a dataset of diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) scans from 48 subjects as either a success or a failure. We then design three groups of features from the image data of nine categorized failures for failure detection. Results show that most of these features can efficiently detect the true failures. The second method—supervised classification—was employed on a larger DTI dataset of 249 manually categorized subjects. Four classifiers—linear discriminant analysis (LDA), logistic regression (LR), support vector machine (SVM), and random forest classification (RFC)—were trained using the designed features and evaluated using a leave-one-out cross validation. Results show that the LR performs worst among the four classifiers and the other three perform comparably, which demonstrates the feasibility of automatically detecting segmentation failures using classification methods.

  16. Assessing the Quality of Teachers' Teaching Practices

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chen, Weiyun; Mason, Stephen; Staniszewski, Christina; Upton, Ashley; Valley, Megan

    2012-01-01

    This study assessed the extent to which nine elementary physical education teachers implemented the quality of teaching practices. Thirty physical education lessons taught by the nine teachers to their students in grades K-5 were videotaped. Four investigators coded the taped lessons using the Assessing Quality Teaching Rubric (AQTR) designed and…

  17. Assessing Quality in Home Visiting Programs

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Korfmacher, Jon; Laszewski, Audrey; Sparr, Mariel; Hammel, Jennifer

    2013-01-01

    Defining quality and designing a quality assessment measure for home visitation programs is a complex and multifaceted undertaking. This article summarizes the process used to create the Home Visitation Program Quality Rating Tool (HVPQRT) and identifies next steps for its development. The HVPQRT measures both structural and dynamic features of…

  18. Automatic Severity Assessment of Dysarthria using State-Specific Vectors.

    PubMed

    Sriranjani, R; Umesh, S; Reddy, M Ramasubba

    2015-01-01

    In this paper, a novel approach to assess the severity of the dysarthria using state-specific vector (SSV) of phone-cluster adaptive training (phone-CAT) acoustic modeling technique is proposed. The dominant component of the SSV represents the actual pronunciations of a speaker. Comparing the dominant component for unimpaired and each dysarthric speaker, a phone confusion matrix is formed. The diagonal elements of the matrix capture the number of correct pronunciations for each dysarthric speaker. As the degree of impairment increases, the number of phones correctly pronounced by the speaker decreases. Thus the trace of the confusion matrix can be used as objective cue to assess di?erent severity levels of dysarthria based on a threshold rule. Our proposed objective measure correlates with the standard Frenchay dysarthric assessment scores by 74 % on Nemours database. The measure also correlates with the intelligibility scores by 82 % on universal access dysarthric speech database.

  19. Automatic Assessment of Complex Task Performance in Games and Simulations. CRESST Report 775

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Iseli, Markus R.; Koenig, Alan D.; Lee, John J.; Wainess, Richard

    2010-01-01

    Assessment of complex task performance is crucial to evaluating personnel in critical job functions such as Navy damage control operations aboard ships. Games and simulations can be instrumental in this process, as they can present a broad range of complex scenarios without involving harm to people or property. However, "automatic"…

  20. Effects of Multisensory Environments on Stereotyped Behaviours Assessed as Maintained by Automatic Reinforcement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hill, Lindsay; Trusler, Karen; Furniss, Frederick; Lancioni, Giulio

    2012-01-01

    Background: The aim of the present study was to evaluate the effects of the sensory equipment provided in a multi-sensory environment (MSE) and the level of social contact provided on levels of stereotyped behaviours assessed as being maintained by automatic reinforcement. Method: Stereotyped and engaged behaviours of two young people with severe…

  1. Automatic Assessment and Reduction of Noise using Edge Pattern Analysis in Non-Linear Image Enhancement

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jobson, Daniel J.; Rahman, Zia-Ur; Woodell, Glenn A.; Hines, Glenn D.

    2004-01-01

    Noise is the primary visibility limit in the process of non-linear image enhancement, and is no longer a statistically stable additive noise in the post-enhancement image. Therefore novel approaches are needed to both assess and reduce spatially variable noise at this stage in overall image processing. Here we will examine the use of edge pattern analysis both for automatic assessment of spatially variable noise and as a foundation for new noise reduction methods.

  2. Automated FMV image quality assessment based on power spectrum statistics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kalukin, Andrew

    2015-05-01

    Factors that degrade image quality in video and other sensor collections, such as noise, blurring, and poor resolution, also affect the spatial power spectrum of imagery. Prior research in human vision and image science from the last few decades has shown that the image power spectrum can be useful for assessing the quality of static images. The research in this article explores the possibility of using the image power spectrum to automatically evaluate full-motion video (FMV) imagery frame by frame. This procedure makes it possible to identify anomalous images and scene changes, and to keep track of gradual changes in quality as collection progresses. This article will describe a method to apply power spectral image quality metrics for images subjected to simulated blurring, blocking, and noise. As a preliminary test on videos from multiple sources, image quality measurements for image frames from 185 videos are compared to analyst ratings based on ground sampling distance. The goal of the research is to develop an automated system for tracking image quality during real-time collection, and to assign ratings to video clips for long-term storage, calibrated to standards such as the National Imagery Interpretability Rating System (NIIRS).

  3. Tools to assess tissue quality.

    PubMed

    Neumeister, Veronique M

    2014-03-01

    Biospecimen science has recognized the importance of tissue quality for accurate molecular and biomarker analysis and efforts are made to standardize tissue procurement, processing and storage conditions of tissue samples. At the same time the field has emphasized the lack of standardization of processes between different laboratories, the variability inherent in the analytical phase and the lack of control over the pre-analytical phase of tissue processing. The problem extends back into tissue samples in biorepositories, which are often decades old and where documentation about tissue processing might not be available. This review highlights pre-analytical variations in tissue handling, processing, fixation and storage and emphasizes the effects of these variables on nucleic acids and proteins in harvested tissue. Finally current tools for quality control regarding molecular or biomarker analysis are summarized and discussed.

  4. Assessing quality in Earth Science Education

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rollinson, Hugh

    1999-05-01

    Quality is an elusive concept — hard to define, but you recognise it when you come across it. This paper reviews the meaning of quality as applied in Higher Education and shows that there are, of necessity, a number of workable definitions of quality in Higher Education. The assessment of quality in Earth Science Higher Education in England during 1994-1995 is described. A number of general features of quality in Earth Sciences Education are drawn from this case study and the future direction of quality assurance is mapped. Three principles drawn from the definitions of quality and from the English teaching quality assessment exercise are applied to Earth Science Education in Africa. It is argued that different definitions of quality will apply in different societal contexts in Africa and that these may be used to shape the relevance of Geoscience Education. Increasing mobility of labour means that comparability of academic standards between African countries within a region is desirable and should be worked for. Finally, research in the UK shows that teaching quality is not necessarily dependent upon the size or research potential of a department, indicating that Africa can deliver high quality Earth Science Education.

  5. Quality Assessment in the Blog Space

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schaal, Markus; Fidan, Guven; Muller, Roland M.; Dagli, Orhan

    2010-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this paper is the presentation of a new method for blog quality assessment. The method uses the temporal sequence of link creation events between blogs as an implicit source for the collective tacit knowledge of blog authors about blog quality. Design/methodology/approach: The blog data are processed by the novel method for…

  6. Perceptual Quality Assessment of Screen Content Images.

    PubMed

    Yang, Huan; Fang, Yuming; Lin, Weisi

    2015-11-01

    Research on screen content images (SCIs) becomes important as they are increasingly used in multi-device communication applications. In this paper, we present a study on perceptual quality assessment of distorted SCIs subjectively and objectively. We construct a large-scale screen image quality assessment database (SIQAD) consisting of 20 source and 980 distorted SCIs. In order to get the subjective quality scores and investigate, which part (text or picture) contributes more to the overall visual quality, the single stimulus methodology with 11 point numerical scale is employed to obtain three kinds of subjective scores corresponding to the entire, textual, and pictorial regions, respectively. According to the analysis of subjective data, we propose a weighting strategy to account for the correlation among these three kinds of subjective scores. Furthermore, we design an objective metric to measure the visual quality of distorted SCIs by considering the visual difference of textual and pictorial regions. The experimental results demonstrate that the proposed SCI perceptual quality assessment scheme, consisting of the objective metric and the weighting strategy, can achieve better performance than 11 state-of-the-art IQA methods. To the best of our knowledge, the SIQAD is the first large-scale database published for quality evaluation of SCIs, and this research is the first attempt to explore the perceptual quality assessment of distorted SCIs.

  7. Assessing Quality in Digital Reference Services.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lankes, R. David; Mcclure, Charles R.; Gross, Melissa

    2001-01-01

    Outlines a study to develop methods to assess the quality of digital reference services, test and refine measures and quality standards to describe digital reference services, and to produce a guidebook that describes how to collect and report data for these measures and standards. (Author/AEF)

  8. Soldier Quality of Life Assessment

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2016-09-01

    Soldier QoL and can support system developers and Army leaders in assessing tradeoffs between QoL and resource demands such as fuel, water , and... WATER LIVING STANDARDS OPERATIONAL READINESS MORALE SUSTAINABILITY WASTE REDUCTION...SUSTAINMENT WATER DEMAND REDUCTION USER NEEDS DATA COLLECTION CONTINGENCY BASES ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT BASE CAMPS

  9. Michigan lakes: An assessment of water quality

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Minnerick, R.J.

    2004-01-01

    Michigan has more than 11,000 inland lakes, that provide countless recreational opportunities and are an important resource that makes tourism and recreation a $15-billion-dollar per-year industry in the State (Stynes, 2002). Knowledge of the water-quality characteristics of inland lakes is essential for the current and future management of these resources.Historically the U. S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) jointly have monitored water quality in Michigan's lakes and rivers. During the 1990's, however, funding for surface-water-quality monitoring was reduced greatly. In 1998, the citizens of Michigan passed the Clean Michigan Initiative to clean up, protect, and enhance Michigan's environmental infrastructure. Because of expanding water-quality-data needs, the MDEQ and the USGS jointly redesigned and implemented the Lake Water-Quality Assessment (LWQA) Monitoring Program (Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, 1997).

  10. Mobile sailing robot for automatic estimation of fish density and monitoring water quality

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Introduction The paper presents the methodology and the algorithm developed to analyze sonar images focused on fish detection in small water bodies and measurement of their parameters: volume, depth and the GPS location. The final results are stored in a table and can be exported to any numerical environment for further analysis. Material and method The measurement method for estimating the number of fish using the automatic robot is based on a sequential calculation of the number of occurrences of fish on the set trajectory. The data analysis from the sonar concerned automatic recognition of fish using the methods of image analysis and processing. Results Image analysis algorithm, a mobile robot together with its control in the 2.4 GHz band and full cryptographic communication with the data archiving station was developed as part of this study. For the three model fish ponds where verification of fish catches was carried out (548, 171 and 226 individuals), the measurement error for the described method was not exceeded 8%. Summary Created robot together with the developed software has features for remote work also in the variety of harsh weather and environmental conditions, is fully automated and can be remotely controlled using Internet. Designed system enables fish spatial location (GPS coordinates and the depth). The purpose of the robot is a non-invasive measurement of the number of fish in water reservoirs and a measurement of the quality of drinking water consumed by humans, especially in situations where local sources of pollution could have a significant impact on the quality of water collected for water treatment for people and when getting to these places is difficult. The systematically used robot equipped with the appropriate sensors, can be part of early warning system against the pollution of water used by humans (drinking water, natural swimming pools) which can be dangerous for their health. PMID:23815984

  11. A subjective study to evaluate video quality assessment algorithms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seshadrinathan, Kalpana; Soundararajan, Rajiv; Bovik, Alan C.; Cormack, Lawrence K.

    2010-02-01

    Automatic methods to evaluate the perceptual quality of a digital video sequence have widespread applications wherever the end-user is a human. Several objective video quality assessment (VQA) algorithms exist, whose performance is typically evaluated using the results of a subjective study performed by the video quality experts group (VQEG) in 2000. There is a great need for a free, publicly available subjective study of video quality that embodies state-of-the-art in video processing technology and that is effective in challenging and benchmarking objective VQA algorithms. In this paper, we present a study and a resulting database, known as the LIVE Video Quality Database, where 150 distorted video sequences obtained from 10 different source video content were subjectively evaluated by 38 human observers. Our study includes videos that have been compressed by MPEG-2 and H.264, as well as videos obtained by simulated transmission of H.264 compressed streams through error prone IP and wireless networks. The subjective evaluation was performed using a single stimulus paradigm with hidden reference removal, where the observers were asked to provide their opinion of video quality on a continuous scale. We also present the performance of several freely available objective, full reference (FR) VQA algorithms on the LIVE Video Quality Database. The recent MOtion-based Video Integrity Evaluation (MOVIE) index emerges as the leading objective VQA algorithm in our study, while the performance of the Video Quality Metric (VQM) and the Multi-Scale Structural SIMilarity (MS-SSIM) index is noteworthy. The LIVE Video Quality Database is freely available for download1 and we hope that our study provides researchers with a valuable tool to benchmark and improve the performance of objective VQA algorithms.

  12. Automatic assessment of the motor state of the Parkinson's disease patient--a case study

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    This paper presents a novel methodology in which the Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS) data processed with a rule-based decision algorithm is used to predict the state of the Parkinson's Disease patients. The research was carried out to investigate whether the advancement of the Parkinson's Disease can be automatically assessed. For this purpose, past and current UPDRS data from 47 subjects were examined. The results show that, among other classifiers, the rough set-based decision algorithm turned out to be most suitable for such automatic assessment. Virtual slides The virtual slide(s) for this article can be found here: http://www.diagnosticpathology.diagnomx.eu/vs/1563339375633634. PMID:22340508

  13. Cropland CEAP soil quality assessment update

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    One goal for the USDA cropland Conservation Effects Assessment Project (CEAP) was to assess the effects of various conservation practices on soil quality, which is a proactive process for quantifying the long-term impact of crop and soil management practices within agricultural watersheds. Our objec...

  14. ANSS Backbone Station Quality Assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leeds, A.; McNamara, D.; Benz, H.; Gee, L.

    2006-12-01

    In this study we assess the ambient noise levels of the broadband seismic stations within the United States Geological Survey's (USGS) Advanced National Seismic System (ANSS) backbone network. The backbone consists of stations operated by the USGS as well as several regional network stations operated by universities. We also assess the improved detection capability of the network due to the installation of 13 additional backbone stations and the upgrade of 26 existing stations funded by the Earthscope initiative. This assessment makes use of probability density functions (PDF) of power spectral densities (PSD) (after McNamara and Buland, 2004) computed by a continuous noise monitoring system developed by the USGS- ANSS and the Incorporated Research Institutions in Seismology (IRIS) Data Management Center (DMC). We compute the median and mode of the PDF distribution and rank the stations relative to the Peterson Low noise model (LNM) (Peterson, 1993) for 11 different period bands. The power of the method lies in the fact that there is no need to screen the data for system transients, earthquakes or general data artifacts since they map into a background probability level. Previous studies have shown that most regional stations, instrumented with short period or extended short period instruments, have a higher noise level in all period bands while stations in the US network have lower noise levels at short periods (0.0625-8.0 seconds), high frequencies (8.0- 0.125Hz). The overall network is evaluated with respect to accomplishing the design goals set for the USArray/ANSS backbone project which were intended to increase broadband performance for the national monitoring network.

  15. Water quality assessment in Ecuador

    SciTech Connect

    Chudy, J.P.; Arniella, E.; Gil, E.

    1993-02-01

    The El Tor cholera pandemic arrived in Ecuador in March 1991, and through the course of the year caused 46,320 cases, of which 692 resulted in death. Most of the cases were confined to cities along Ecuador's coast. The Water and Sanitation for Health Project (WASH), which was asked to participate in the review of this request, suggested that a more comprehensive approach should be taken to cholera control and prevention. The approach was accepted, and a multidisciplinary team consisting of a sanitary engineer, a hygiene education specialist, and an institutional specialist was scheduled to carry out the assessment in late 1992 following the national elections.

  16. Automatic humidification system to support the assessment of food drying processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ortiz Hernández, B. D.; Carreño Olejua, A. R.; Castellanos Olarte, J. M.

    2016-07-01

    This work shows the main features of an automatic humidification system to provide drying air that match environmental conditions of different climate zones. This conditioned air is then used to assess the drying process of different agro-industrial products at the Automation and Control for Agro-industrial Processes Laboratory of the Pontifical Bolivarian University of Bucaramanga, Colombia. The automatic system allows creating and improving control strategies to supply drying air under specified conditions of temperature and humidity. The development of automatic routines to control and acquire real time data was made possible by the use of robust control systems and suitable instrumentation. The signals are read and directed to a controller memory where they are scaled and transferred to a memory unit. Using the IP address is possible to access data to perform supervision tasks. One important characteristic of this automatic system is the Dynamic Data Exchange Server (DDE) to allow direct communication between the control unit and the computer used to build experimental curves.

  17. Biosignal Analysis to Assess Mental Stress in Automatic Driving of Trucks: Palmar Perspiration and Masseter Electromyography

    PubMed Central

    Zheng, Rencheng; Yamabe, Shigeyuki; Nakano, Kimihiko; Suda, Yoshihiro

    2015-01-01

    Nowadays insight into human-machine interaction is a critical topic with the large-scale development of intelligent vehicles. Biosignal analysis can provide a deeper understanding of driver behaviors that may indicate rationally practical use of the automatic technology. Therefore, this study concentrates on biosignal analysis to quantitatively evaluate mental stress of drivers during automatic driving of trucks, with vehicles set at a closed gap distance apart to reduce air resistance to save energy consumption. By application of two wearable sensor systems, a continuous measurement was realized for palmar perspiration and masseter electromyography, and a biosignal processing method was proposed to assess mental stress levels. In a driving simulator experiment, ten participants completed automatic driving with 4, 8, and 12 m gap distances from the preceding vehicle, and manual driving with about 25 m gap distance as a reference. It was found that mental stress significantly increased when the gap distances decreased, and an abrupt increase in mental stress of drivers was also observed accompanying a sudden change of the gap distance during automatic driving, which corresponded to significantly higher ride discomfort according to subjective reports. PMID:25738768

  18. Biosignal analysis to assess mental stress in automatic driving of trucks: palmar perspiration and masseter electromyography.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Rencheng; Yamabe, Shigeyuki; Nakano, Kimihiko; Suda, Yoshihiro

    2015-03-02

    Nowadays insight into human-machine interaction is a critical topic with the large-scale development of intelligent vehicles. Biosignal analysis can provide a deeper understanding of driver behaviors that may indicate rationally practical use of the automatic technology. Therefore, this study concentrates on biosignal analysis to quantitatively evaluate mental stress of drivers during automatic driving of trucks, with vehicles set at a closed gap distance apart to reduce air resistance to save energy consumption. By application of two wearable sensor systems, a continuous measurement was realized for palmar perspiration and masseter electromyography, and a biosignal processing method was proposed to assess mental stress levels. In a driving simulator experiment, ten participants completed automatic driving with 4, 8, and 12 m gap distances from the preceding vehicle, and manual driving with about 25 m gap distance as a reference. It was found that mental stress significantly increased when the gap distances decreased, and an abrupt increase in mental stress of drivers was also observed accompanying a sudden change of the gap distance during automatic driving, which corresponded to significantly higher ride discomfort according to subjective reports.

  19. No-reference quality assessment based on visual perception

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Junshan; Yang, Yawei; Hu, Shuangyan; Zhang, Jiao

    2014-11-01

    The visual quality assessment of images/videos is an ongoing hot research topic, which has become more and more important for numerous image and video processing applications with the rapid development of digital imaging and communication technologies. The goal of image quality assessment (IQA) algorithms is to automatically assess the quality of images/videos in agreement with human quality judgments. Up to now, two kinds of models have been used for IQA, namely full-reference (FR) and no-reference (NR) models. For FR models, IQA algorithms interpret image quality as fidelity or similarity with a perfect image in some perceptual space. However, the reference image is not available in many practical applications, and a NR IQA approach is desired. Considering natural vision as optimized by the millions of years of evolutionary pressure, many methods attempt to achieve consistency in quality prediction by modeling salient physiological and psychological features of the human visual system (HVS). To reach this goal, researchers try to simulate HVS with image sparsity coding and supervised machine learning, which are two main features of HVS. A typical HVS captures the scenes by sparsity coding, and uses experienced knowledge to apperceive objects. In this paper, we propose a novel IQA approach based on visual perception. Firstly, a standard model of HVS is studied and analyzed, and the sparse representation of image is accomplished with the model; and then, the mapping correlation between sparse codes and subjective quality scores is trained with the regression technique of least squaresupport vector machine (LS-SVM), which gains the regressor that can predict the image quality; the visual metric of image is predicted with the trained regressor at last. We validate the performance of proposed approach on Laboratory for Image and Video Engineering (LIVE) database, the specific contents of the type of distortions present in the database are: 227 images of JPEG2000, 233

  20. Quality Management Plan for the Environmental Assessment and Innovation Division

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Quality management plan (QMP) which identifies the mission, roles, responsibilities of personnel with regard to quality assurance and quality management for the environmental assessment and innovation division.

  1. Assessing product image quality for online shopping

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goswami, Anjan; Chung, Sung H.; Chittar, Naren; Islam, Atiq

    2012-01-01

    Assessing product-image quality is important in the context of online shopping. A high quality image that conveys more information about a product can boost the buyer's confidence and can get more attention. However, the notion of image quality for product-images is not the same as that in other domains. The perception of quality of product-images depends not only on various photographic quality features but also on various high level features such as clarity of the foreground or goodness of the background etc. In this paper, we define a notion of product-image quality based on various such features. We conduct a crowd-sourced experiment to collect user judgments on thousands of eBay's images. We formulate a multi-class classification problem for modeling image quality by classifying images into good, fair and poor quality based on the guided perceptual notions from the judges. We also conduct experiments with regression using average crowd-sourced human judgments as target. We compute a pseudo-regression score with expected average of predicted classes and also compute a score from the regression technique. We design many experiments with various sampling and voting schemes with crowd-sourced data and construct various experimental image quality models. Most of our models have reasonable accuracies (greater or equal to 70%) on test data set. We observe that our computed image quality score has a high (0.66) rank correlation with average votes from the crowd sourced human judgments.

  2. Electrical Inspection Oriented Thermal Image Quality Assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, Ying; Wang, Menglin; Gong, Xiaojin; Guo, Zhihong; Geng, Yujie; Bai, Demeng

    2017-01-01

    This paper presents an approach to access the quality of thermal images that are specially used in electrical inspection. In this application, no reference images are given for quality assessment. Therefore, we first analyze the characteristics for these thermal images. Then, four quantitative measurements, which are one-dimensional (1D) entropy, two-dimensional (2D) entropy, centrality, and No-Reference Structural Sharpness (NRSS), are investigated to measure the information content, the centrality for objects of interest, and the sharpness of images. Moreover, in order to provide a more intuitive measure for human operators, we assign each image with a discrete rate based on these quantitative measurements via the k-nearest neighbor (KNN) method. The proposed approach has been validated in a dataset composed of 2,336 images. Experiments show that our quality assessment results are consistent with subjective assessment.

  3. Automatic Human Movement Assessment with Switching Linear Dynamic System: Motion Segmentation and Motor Performance.

    PubMed

    de Souza Baptista, Roberto; Bo, Antonio; Hayashibe, Mitsuhiro

    2016-07-14

    Performance assessment of human movement is critical in diagnosis and motor-control rehabilitation. Recent developments in portable sensor technology enable clinicians to measure spatiotemporal aspects to aid in the neurological assessment. However the extraction of quantitative information from such measurements is usually done manually through visual inspection. This paper presents a novel framework for automatic human movement assessment that executes segmentation and motor performance parameter extraction in time-series of measurements from a sequence of human movements. We use the elements of a Switching Linear Dynamic System model as building blocks to translate formal definitions and procedures from human movement analysis. Our approach provides a method for users with no expertise in signal processing to create models for movements using labeled dataset and latter use it for automatic assessment. We validated our framework on preliminary tests involving six healthy adult subjects that executed common movements in functional tests and rehabilitation exercise sessions, such as sit-to-stand and lateral elevation of the arms and five elderly subjects, two of which with limited mobility, that executed the sit-to-stand movement. The proposed method worked on random motion sequences for the dual purpose of movement segmentation (accuracy of 72-100%) and motor performance assessment (mean error of 0-12%).

  4. SU-D-BRF-03: Improvement of TomoTherapy Megavoltage Topogram Image Quality for Automatic Registration During Patient Localization

    SciTech Connect

    Scholey, J; White, B; Qi, S; Low, D

    2014-06-01

    Purpose: To improve the quality of mega-voltage orthogonal scout images (MV topograms) for a fast and low-dose alternative technique for patient localization on the TomoTherapy HiART system. Methods: Digitally reconstructed radiographs (DRR) of anthropomorphic head and pelvis phantoms were synthesized from kVCT under TomoTherapy geometry (kV-DRR). Lateral (LAT) and anterior-posterior (AP) aligned topograms were acquired with couch speeds of 1cm/s, 2cm/s, and 3cm/s. The phantoms were rigidly translated in all spatial directions with known offsets in increments of 5mm, 10mm, and 15mm to simulate daily positioning errors. The contrast of the MV topograms was automatically adjusted based on the image intensity characteristics. A low-pass fast Fourier transform filter removed high-frequency noise and a Weiner filter reduced stochastic noise caused by scattered radiation to the detector array. An intensity-based image registration algorithm was used to register the MV topograms to a corresponding kV-DRR by minimizing the mean square error between corresponding pixel intensities. The registration accuracy was assessed by comparing the normalized cross correlation coefficients (NCC) between the registered topograms and the kV-DRR. The applied phantom offsets were determined by registering the MV topograms with the kV-DRR and recovering the spatial translation of the MV topograms. Results: The automatic registration technique provided millimeter accuracy and was robust for the deformed MV topograms for three tested couch speeds. The lowest average NCC for all AP and LAT MV topograms was 0.96 for the head phantom and 0.93 for the pelvis phantom. The offsets were recovered to within 1.6mm and 6.5mm for the processed and the original MV topograms respectively. Conclusion: Automatic registration of the processed MV topograms to a corresponding kV-DRR recovered simulated daily positioning errors that were accurate to the order of a millimeter. These results suggest the clinical

  5. Accuracy assessment of building point clouds automatically generated from iphone images

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sirmacek, B.; Lindenbergh, R.

    2014-06-01

    Low-cost sensor generated 3D models can be useful for quick 3D urban model updating, yet the quality of the models is questionable. In this article, we evaluate the reliability of an automatic point cloud generation method using multi-view iPhone images or an iPhone video file as an input. We register such automatically generated point cloud on a TLS point cloud of the same object to discuss accuracy, advantages and limitations of the iPhone generated point clouds. For the chosen example showcase, we have classified 1.23% of the iPhone point cloud points as outliers, and calculated the mean of the point to point distances to the TLS point cloud as 0.11 m. Since a TLS point cloud might also include measurement errors and noise, we computed local noise values for the point clouds from both sources. Mean (μ) and standard deviation (σ) of roughness histograms are calculated as (μ1 = 0.44 m., σ1 = 0.071 m.) and (μ2 = 0.025 m., σ2 = 0.037 m.) for the iPhone and TLS point clouds respectively. Our experimental results indicate possible usage of the proposed automatic 3D model generation framework for 3D urban map updating, fusion and detail enhancing, quick and real-time change detection purposes. However, further insights should be obtained first on the circumstances that are needed to guarantee a successful point cloud generation from smartphone images.

  6. Image quality and radiation dose of 128-slice dual-source CT venography using low kilovoltage combined with high-pitch scanning and automatic tube current modulation.

    PubMed

    Park, Chan Kue; Choo, Ki Seok; Jeon, Ung Bae; Baik, Seung Kug; Kim, Yong Woo; Kim, Tae Un; Kim, Chang Won; Jeong, Yeon Ju; Jeong, Dong Wook; Lim, Soo Jin

    2013-06-01

    To compare vascular enhancement, image quality, and radiation dose of 128-slice dual-source CT venography (CTV) between an imaging setting of 120 kVp with low pitch, and a setting of 100 kVp combined with high pitch and automatic tube current modulation. A total of 100 patients with suspected deep vein thrombosis and varicose veins were divided into two groups: Group 1 [50 patients, 120 kVp, low pitch (0.6), and fixed 120 mA) and Group 2 (50 patients, 100 kVp, high pitch (3.0), and automatic tube current modulation]. Two radiologists, who were blinded to the image protocol, assessed vascular enhancement and image noise in the inferior vena cava (IVC), femoral vein, and popliteal vein. They also assigned an image quality score independently using a 5-point visual scale. Effective dose was estimated using the dose-length product (DLP). Group demographics, radiation dose, vascular enhancement, image noise, and image quality in the two groups were analyzed. Mean vascular enhancement of the IVC, femoral vein, and popliteal vein was significantly higher in group 2 than in group 1, and images in group 2 had significantly higher image noise. However, there were no significant differences in subjective image quality score of the IVC, femoral vein, and popliteal vein. The mean DLP in group 2 (402.10 ± 94.29 mGy cm) was significantly lower than that in group 1 (973.36 ± 63.20 mGy cm) (P < 0.001). Lower extremity CTV using 100 kVp, high pitch (3.0), and automatic tube current modulation improved vascular enhancement with acceptable image quality and low radiation dose.

  7. SNPflow: A Lightweight Application for the Processing, Storing and Automatic Quality Checking of Genotyping Assays

    PubMed Central

    Schönherr, Sebastian; Neuner, Mathias; Forer, Lukas; Specht, Günther; Kloss-Brandstätter, Anita; Kronenberg, Florian; Coassin, Stefan

    2013-01-01

    Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) play a prominent role in modern genetics. Current genotyping technologies such as Sequenom iPLEX, ABI TaqMan and KBioscience KASPar made the genotyping of huge SNP sets in large populations straightforward and allow the generation of hundreds of thousands of genotypes even in medium sized labs. While data generation is straightforward, the subsequent data conversion, storage and quality control steps are time-consuming, error-prone and require extensive bioinformatic support. In order to ease this tedious process, we developed SNPflow. SNPflow is a lightweight, intuitive and easily deployable application, which processes genotype data from Sequenom MassARRAY (iPLEX) and ABI 7900HT (TaqMan, KASPar) systems and is extendible to other genotyping methods as well. SNPflow automatically converts the raw output files to ready-to-use genotype lists, calculates all standard quality control values such as call rate, expected and real amount of replicates, minor allele frequency, absolute number of discordant replicates, discordance rate and the p-value of the HWE test, checks the plausibility of the observed genotype frequencies by comparing them to HapMap/1000-Genomes, provides a module for the processing of SNPs, which allow sex determination for DNA quality control purposes and, finally, stores all data in a relational database. SNPflow runs on all common operating systems and comes as both stand-alone version and multi-user version for laboratory-wide use. The software, a user manual, screenshots and a screencast illustrating the main features are available at http://genepi-snpflow.i-med.ac.at. PMID:23527209

  8. Automatic tube current modulation for whole-body polytrauma CT with immobilization devices: is there an increase in radiation dose and degradation of image quality?

    PubMed

    Euler, André; Stieltjes, Bram; Schindera, Sebastian T

    2017-02-01

    The objective of this study was the assessment of the image quality and radiation dose in polytrauma CT using immobilization devices. An anthropomorphic whole body and a liver phantom were scanned on a 128-slice CT scanner with four different protocols using automatic tube current modulation (120 kVp, 150 ref. mAs; 120 kV, 200 ref. mAs; 140 kVp, 150 ref. mAs; and 140 kVp, 200 ref. mAs) and four different setups (no immobilization device (setup A), vacuum mattress 1 (setup B), vacuum mattress 2 (setup C), and spineboard (setup D)). Qualitative and quantitative image quality parameters and radiation dose were assessed. Image noise increased on average by 6.6, 11.2, and 9.4 %, and CNR decreased by 11.2, 13.9, and 6.5 for setups B, C, and D, respectively, compared with setup A. The CTDIvol increased up to 6 % using immobilization devices. Severe streak artifacts, provoked by the inflation valve of the mattresses were detected at the level of the head and shoulder. Applying immobilization devices for whole-body CT with automatic tube current modulation increases the radiation dose and decreases the quantitative image quality slightly. Severe artifacts, induced by the inflation valve of the mattress, can influence the diagnostic accuracy at the level of the head and shoulder.

  9. An algorithm used for quality criterion automatic measurement of band-pass filters and its device implementation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Qianshun; Liu, Yan; Yu, Feihong

    2013-08-01

    As a kind of film device, band-pass filter is widely used in pattern recognition, infrared detection, optical fiber communication, etc. In this paper, an algorithm for automatic measurement of band-pass filter quality criterion is proposed based on the proven theory calculation of derivate spectral transmittance of filter formula. Firstly, wavelet transform to reduce spectrum data noises is used. Secondly, combining with the Gaussian curve fitting and least squares method, the algorithm fits spectrum curve and searches the peak. Finally, some parameters for judging band-pass filter quality are figure out. Based on the algorithm, a pipeline for band-pass filters automatic measurement system has been designed that can scan the filter array automatically and display spectral transmittance of each filter. At the same time, the system compares the measuring result with the user defined standards to determine if the filter is qualified or not. The qualified product will be market with green color, and the unqualified product will be marked with red color. With the experiments verification, the automatic measurement system basically realized comprehensive, accurate and rapid measurement of band-pass filter quality and achieved the expected results.

  10. Automatic and Objective Assessment of Alternating Tapping Performance in Parkinson's Disease

    PubMed Central

    Memedi, Mevludin; Khan, Taha; Grenholm, Peter; Nyholm, Dag; Westin, Jerker

    2013-01-01

    This paper presents the development and evaluation of a method for enabling quantitative and automatic scoring of alternating tapping performance of patients with Parkinson's disease (PD). Ten healthy elderly subjects and 95 patients in different clinical stages of PD have utilized a touch-pad handheld computer to perform alternate tapping tests in their home environments. First, a neurologist used a web-based system to visually assess impairments in four tapping dimensions (‘speed’, ‘accuracy’, ‘fatigue’ and ‘arrhythmia’) and a global tapping severity (GTS). Second, tapping signals were processed with time series analysis and statistical methods to derive 24 quantitative parameters. Third, principal component analysis was used to reduce the dimensions of these parameters and to obtain scores for the four dimensions. Finally, a logistic regression classifier was trained using a 10-fold stratified cross-validation to map the reduced parameters to the corresponding visually assessed GTS scores. Results showed that the computed scores correlated well to visually assessed scores and were significantly different across Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale scores of upper limb motor performance. In addition, they had good internal consistency, had good ability to discriminate between healthy elderly and patients in different disease stages, had good sensitivity to treatment interventions and could reflect the natural disease progression over time. In conclusion, the automatic method can be useful to objectively assess the tapping performance of PD patients and can be included in telemedicine tools for remote monitoring of tapping. PMID:24351667

  11. Soil quality assessment under emerging regulatory requirements.

    PubMed

    Bone, James; Head, Martin; Barraclough, Declan; Archer, Michael; Scheib, Catherine; Flight, Dee; Voulvoulis, Nikolaos

    2010-08-01

    New and emerging policies that aim to set standards for protection and sustainable use of soil are likely to require identification of geographical risk/priority areas. Soil degradation can be seen as the change or disturbance in soil quality and it is therefore crucial that soil and soil quality are well understood to protect soils and to meet legislative requirements. To increase this understanding a review of the soil quality definition evaluated its development, with a formal scientific approach to assessment beginning in the 1970s, followed by a period of discussion and refinement. A number of reservations about soil quality assessment expressed in the literature are summarised. Taking concerns into account, a definition of soil quality incorporating soil's ability to meet multifunctional requirements, to provide ecosystem services, and the potential for soils to affect other environmental media is described. Assessment using this definition requires a large number of soil function dependent indicators that can be expensive, laborious, prone to error, and problematic in comparison. Findings demonstrate the need for a method that is not function dependent, but uses a number of cross-functional indicators instead. This method to systematically prioritise areas where detailed investigation is required, using a ranking based against a desired level of action, could be relatively quick, easy and cost effective. As such this has potential to fill in gaps and compliment existing monitoring programs and assist in development and implementation of current and future soil protection legislation.

  12. An assessment model for quality management

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Völcker, Chr.; Cass, A.; Dorling, A.; Zilioli, P.; Secchi, P.

    2002-07-01

    SYNSPACE together with InterSPICE and Alenia Spazio is developing an assessment method to determine the capability of an organisation in the area of quality management. The method, sponsored by the European Space Agency (ESA), is called S9kS (SPiCE- 9000 for SPACE). S9kS is based on ISO 9001:2000 with additions from the quality standards issued by the European Committee for Space Standardization (ECSS) and ISO 15504 - Process Assessments. The result is a reference model that supports the expansion of the generic process assessment framework provided by ISO 15504 to nonsoftware areas. In order to be compliant with ISO 15504, requirements from ISO 9001 and ECSS-Q-20 and Q-20-09 have been turned into process definitions in terms of Purpose and Outcomes, supported by a list of detailed indicators such as Practices, Work Products and Work Product Characteristics. In coordination with this project, the capability dimension of ISO 15504 has been revised to be consistent with ISO 9001. As contributions from ISO 9001 and the space quality assurance standards are separable, the stripped down version S9k offers organisations in all industries an assessment model based solely on ISO 9001, and is therefore interesting to all organisations, which intend to improve their quality management system based on ISO 9001.

  13. Water quality issues and energy assessments

    SciTech Connect

    Davis, M.J.; Chiu, S.

    1980-11-01

    This report identifies and evaluates the significant water quality issues related to regional and national energy development. In addition, it recommends improvements in the Office assessment capability. Handbook-style formating, which includes a system of cross-references and prioritization, is designed to help the reader use the material.

  14. Full-Reference Image Quality Assessment with Linear Combination of Genetically Selected Quality Measures

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Information carried by an image can be distorted due to different image processing steps introduced by different electronic means of storage and communication. Therefore, development of algorithms which can automatically assess a quality of the image in a way that is consistent with human evaluation is important. In this paper, an approach to image quality assessment (IQA) is proposed in which the quality of a given image is evaluated jointly by several IQA approaches. At first, in order to obtain such joint models, an optimisation problem of IQA measures aggregation is defined, where a weighted sum of their outputs, i.e., objective scores, is used as the aggregation operator. Then, the weight of each measure is considered as a decision variable in a problem of minimisation of root mean square error between obtained objective scores and subjective scores. Subjective scores reflect ground-truth and involve evaluation of images by human observers. The optimisation problem is solved using a genetic algorithm, which also selects suitable measures used in aggregation. Obtained multimeasures are evaluated on four largest widely used image benchmarks and compared against state-of-the-art full-reference IQA approaches. Results of comparison reveal that the proposed approach outperforms other competing measures. PMID:27341493

  15. Retinal image quality assessment using generic features

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fasih, Mahnaz; Langlois, J. M. Pierre; Ben Tahar, Houssem; Cheriet, Farida

    2014-03-01

    Retinal image quality assessment is an important step in automated eye disease diagnosis. Diagnosis accuracy is highly dependent on the quality of retinal images, because poor image quality might prevent the observation of significant eye features and disease manifestations. A robust algorithm is therefore required in order to evaluate the quality of images in a large database. We developed an algorithm for retinal image quality assessment based on generic features that is independent from segmentation methods. It exploits the local sharpness and texture features by applying the cumulative probability of blur detection metric and run-length encoding algorithm, respectively. The quality features are combined to evaluate the image's suitability for diagnosis purposes. Based on the recommendations of medical experts and our experience, we compared a global and a local approach. A support vector machine with radial basis functions was used as a nonlinear classifier in order to classify images to gradable and ungradable groups. We applied our methodology to 65 images of size 2592×1944 pixels that had been graded by a medical expert. The expert evaluated 38 images as gradable and 27 as ungradable. The results indicate very good agreement between the proposed algorithm's predictions and the medical expert's judgment: the sensitivity and specificity for the local approach are respectively 92% and 94%. The algorithm demonstrates sufficient robustness to identify relevant images for automated diagnosis.

  16. Fully automatic measurements of axial vertebral rotation for assessment of spinal deformity in idiopathic scoliosis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forsberg, Daniel; Lundström, Claes; Andersson, Mats; Vavruch, Ludvig; Tropp, Hans; Knutsson, Hans

    2013-03-01

    Reliable measurements of spinal deformities in idiopathic scoliosis are vital, since they are used for assessing the degree of scoliosis, deciding upon treatment and monitoring the progression of the disease. However, commonly used two dimensional methods (e.g. the Cobb angle) do not fully capture the three dimensional deformity at hand in scoliosis, of which axial vertebral rotation (AVR) is considered to be of great importance. There are manual methods for measuring the AVR, but they are often time-consuming and related with a high intra- and inter-observer variability. In this paper, we present a fully automatic method for estimating the AVR in images from computed tomography. The proposed method is evaluated on four scoliotic patients with 17 vertebrae each and compared with manual measurements performed by three observers using the standard method by Aaro-Dahlborn. The comparison shows that the difference in measured AVR between automatic and manual measurements are on the same level as the inter-observer difference. This is further supported by a high intraclass correlation coefficient (0.971-0.979), obtained when comparing the automatic measurements with the manual measurements of each observer. Hence, the provided results and the computational performance, only requiring approximately 10 to 15 s for processing an entire volume, demonstrate the potential clinical value of the proposed method.

  17. An Automatic Image Processing Workflow for Daily Magnetic Resonance Imaging Quality Assurance.

    PubMed

    Peltonen, Juha I; Mäkelä, Teemu; Sofiev, Alexey; Salli, Eero

    2017-04-01

    The performance of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) equipment is typically monitored with a quality assurance (QA) program. The QA program includes various tests performed at regular intervals. Users may execute specific tests, e.g., daily, weekly, or monthly. The exact interval of these measurements varies according to the department policies, machine setup and usage, manufacturer's recommendations, and available resources. In our experience, a single image acquired before the first patient of the day offers a low effort and effective system check. When this daily QA check is repeated with identical imaging parameters and phantom setup, the data can be used to derive various time series of the scanner performance. However, daily QA with manual processing can quickly become laborious in a multi-scanner environment. Fully automated image analysis and results output can positively impact the QA process by decreasing reaction time, improving repeatability, and by offering novel performance evaluation methods. In this study, we have developed a daily MRI QA workflow that can measure multiple scanner performance parameters with minimal manual labor required. The daily QA system is built around a phantom image taken by the radiographers at the beginning of day. The image is acquired with a consistent phantom setup and standardized imaging parameters. Recorded parameters are processed into graphs available to everyone involved in the MRI QA process via a web-based interface. The presented automatic MRI QA system provides an efficient tool for following the short- and long-term stability of MRI scanners.

  18. Automated Assessment of the Quality of Depression Websites

    PubMed Central

    Tang, Thanh Tin; Hawking, David; Christensen, Helen

    2005-01-01

    Background Since health information on the World Wide Web is of variable quality, methods are needed to assist consumers to identify health websites containing evidence-based information. Manual assessment tools may assist consumers to evaluate the quality of sites. However, these tools are poorly validated and often impractical. There is a need to develop better consumer tools, and in particular to explore the potential of automated procedures for evaluating the quality of health information on the web. Objective This study (1) describes the development of an automated quality assessment procedure (AQA) designed to automatically rank depression websites according to their evidence-based quality; (2) evaluates the validity of the AQA relative to human rated evidence-based quality scores; and (3) compares the validity of Google PageRank and the AQA as indicators of evidence-based quality. Method The AQA was developed using a quality feedback technique and a set of training websites previously rated manually according to their concordance with statements in the Oxford University Centre for Evidence-Based Mental Health’s guidelines for treating depression. The validation phase involved 30 websites compiled from the DMOZ, Yahoo! and LookSmart Depression Directories by randomly selecting six sites from each of the Google PageRank bands of 0, 1-2, 3-4, 5-6 and 7-8. Evidence-based ratings from two independent raters (based on concordance with the Oxford guidelines) were then compared with scores derived from the automated AQA and Google algorithms. There was no overlap in the websites used in the training and validation phases of the study. Results The correlation between the AQA score and the evidence-based ratings was high and significant (r=0.85, P<.001). Addition of a quadratic component improved the fit, the combined linear and quadratic model explaining 82 percent of the variance. The correlation between Google PageRank and the evidence-based score was lower than

  19. Water Quality Assessment using Satellite Remote Sensing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haque, Saad Ul

    2016-07-01

    The two main global issues related to water are its declining quality and quantity. Population growth, industrialization, increase in agriculture land and urbanization are the main causes upon which the inland water bodies are confronted with the increasing water demand. The quality of surface water has also been degraded in many countries over the past few decades due to the inputs of nutrients and sediments especially in the lakes and reservoirs. Since water is essential for not only meeting the human needs but also to maintain natural ecosystem health and integrity, there are efforts worldwide to assess and restore quality of surface waters. Remote sensing techniques provide a tool for continuous water quality information in order to identify and minimize sources of pollutants that are harmful for human and aquatic life. The proposed methodology is focused on assessing quality of water at selected lakes in Pakistan (Sindh); namely, HUBDAM, KEENJHAR LAKE, HALEEJI and HADEERO. These lakes are drinking water sources for several major cities of Pakistan including Karachi. Satellite imagery of Landsat 7 (ETM+) is used to identify the variation in water quality of these lakes in terms of their optical properties. All bands of Landsat 7 (ETM+) image are analyzed to select only those that may be correlated with some water quality parameters (e.g. suspended solids, chlorophyll a). The Optimum Index Factor (OIF) developed by Chavez et al. (1982) is used for selection of the optimum combination of bands. The OIF is calculated by dividing the sum of standard deviations of any three bands with the sum of their respective correlation coefficients (absolute values). It is assumed that the band with the higher standard deviation contains the higher amount of 'information' than other bands. Therefore, OIF values are ranked and three bands with the highest OIF are selected for the visual interpretation. A color composite image is created using these three bands. The water quality

  20. Automated Data Quality Assessment of Marine Sensors

    PubMed Central

    Timms, Greg P.; de Souza, Paulo A.; Reznik, Leon; Smith, Daniel V.

    2011-01-01

    The automated collection of data (e.g., through sensor networks) has led to a massive increase in the quantity of environmental and other data available. The sheer quantity of data and growing need for real-time ingestion of sensor data (e.g., alerts and forecasts from physical models) means that automated Quality Assurance/Quality Control (QA/QC) is necessary to ensure that the data collected is fit for purpose. Current automated QA/QC approaches provide assessments based upon hard classifications of the gathered data; often as a binary decision of good or bad data that fails to quantify our confidence in the data for use in different applications. We propose a novel framework for automated data quality assessments that uses Fuzzy Logic to provide a continuous scale of data quality. This continuous quality scale is then used to compute error bars upon the data, which quantify the data uncertainty and provide a more meaningful measure of the data’s fitness for purpose in a particular application compared with hard quality classifications. The design principles of the framework are presented and enable both data statistics and expert knowledge to be incorporated into the uncertainty assessment. We have implemented and tested the framework upon a real time platform of temperature and conductivity sensors that have been deployed to monitor the Derwent Estuary in Hobart, Australia. Results indicate that the error bars generated from the Fuzzy QA/QC implementation are in good agreement with the error bars manually encoded by a domain expert. PMID:22163714

  1. External quality assessment scheme and laboratory accreditation in Indonesia.

    PubMed

    Timan, Ina S; Aulia, Diana; Santoso, Witono

    2002-02-01

    The National Program on External Quality Assessment Scheme (NEQAS) in Indonesia was first started in 1979, organized by the Indonesian Ministry of Health collaborating with professional bodies. The first trial was for clinical chemistry test with 2 cycles per year, followed by the hematology NEQAS in 1986 in collaboration with WHO-Royal Post Graduate Medical School London. After that, the schemes for serology, microbiology and parasitology were also organized. Around 500-600 laboratories throughout Indonesia participated each year in these quality control schemes, 2-4 cycles per year. Samples would be sent to participants and results will be given back to each laboratory. Poor performers should participate in the workshop or training course conducted by the Central Health Laboratory to improve their results. Participation in this NEQAS is mandatory for obtaining the laboratory license, and the Ministry of Health uses these schemes as one of the means for monitoring and coordinating the performance of laboratories throughout Indonesia. There are also some other EQAS (External Quality Assessment Scheme) programs conducted by professional bodies, such as for hemostasis, clinical chemistry and serology. During the course of conducting these schemes, it could be observed that manual methods were gradually changed to the automatic methods, especially for the clinical chemistry and hematology laboratories, which counts also for improvements of their results. Since the last 6 years, the Ministry of Health also began to conduct the Accreditation System evaluation for hospitals, including the laboratory departments. There are 7 standards that were evaluated, such as the aspect of the organization, administration and management, staffing, facilities and equipment, standard operating procedures, research and developments and quality control. This accreditation program is still in progress for all public and private hospital laboratories.

  2. Automatic information timeliness assessment of diabetes web sites by evidence based medicine.

    PubMed

    Sağlam, Rahime Belen; Taşkaya Temizel, Tuğba

    2014-11-01

    Studies on health domain have shown that health websites provide imperfect information and give recommendations which are not up to date with the recent literature even when their last modified dates are quite recent. In this paper, we propose a framework which assesses the timeliness of the content of health websites automatically by evidence based medicine. Our aim is to assess the accordance of website contents with the current literature and information timeliness disregarding the update time stated on the websites. The proposed method is based on automatic term recognition, relevance feedback and information retrieval techniques in order to generate time-aware structured queries. We tested the framework on diabetes health web sites which were archived between 2006 and 2013 by Archive-it using American Diabetes Association's (ADA) guidelines. The results showed that the proposed framework achieves 65% and 77% accuracy in detecting the timeliness of the web content according to years and pre-determined time intervals respectively. Information seekers and web site owners may benefit from the proposed framework in finding relevant and up-to-date diabetes web sites.

  3. Visual pattern degradation based image quality assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Jinjian; Li, Leida; Shi, Guangming; Lin, Weisi; Wan, Wenfei

    2015-08-01

    In this paper, we introduce a visual pattern degradation based full-reference (FR) image quality assessment (IQA) method. Researches on visual recognition indicate that the human visual system (HVS) is highly adaptive to extract visual structures for scene understanding. Existing structure degradation based IQA methods mainly take local luminance contrast to represent structure, and measure quality as degradation on luminance contrast. In this paper, we suggest that structure includes not only luminance contrast but also orientation information. Therefore, we analyze the orientation characteristic for structure description. Inspired by the orientation selectivity mechanism in the primary visual cortex, we introduce a novel visual pattern to represent the structure of a local region. Then, the quality is measured as the degradations on both luminance contrast and visual pattern. Experimental results on Five benchmark databases demonstrate that the proposed visual pattern can effectively represent visual structure and the proposed IQA method performs better than the existing IQA metrics.

  4. Estimating the quality of pasturage in the municipality of Paragominas (PA) by means of automatic analysis of LANDSAT data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dejesusparada, N. (Principal Investigator); Dossantos, A. P.; Novo, E. M. L. D.; Duarte, V.

    1981-01-01

    The use of LANDSAT data to evaluate pasture quality in the Amazon region is demonstrated. Pasture degradation in deforested areas of a traditional tropical forest cattle-raising region was estimated. Automatic analysis using interactive multispectral analysis (IMAGE-100) shows that 24% of the deforested areas were occupied by natural vegetation regrowth, 24% by exposed soil, 15% by degraded pastures, and 46% was suitable grazing land.

  5. Quality versus quantity: assessing individual research performance

    PubMed Central

    Sahel, José-Alain

    2011-01-01

    Evaluating individual research performance is a complex task that ideally examines productivity, scientific impact, and research quality––a task that metrics alone have been unable to achieve. In January 2011, the French Academy of Sciences published a report on current bibliometric (citation metric) methods for evaluating individual researchers, as well as recommendations for the integration of quality assessment. Here, we draw on key issues raised by this report and comment on the suggestions for improving existing research evaluation practices. PMID:21613620

  6. Teachers' Opinions on Quality Criteria for Competency Assessment Programs

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Baartman, Liesbeth K. J.; Bastiaens, Theo J.; Kirschner, Paul A.; Van der Vleuten, Cees P. M.

    2007-01-01

    Quality control policies towards Dutch vocational schools have changed dramatically because the government questioned examination quality. Schools must now demonstrate assessment quality to a new Examination Quality Center. Since teachers often design assessments, they must be involved in quality issues. This study therefore explores teachers'…

  7. Assessing the quality of cost management

    SciTech Connect

    Fayne, V.; McAllister, A.; Weiner, S.B.

    1995-12-31

    Managing environmental programs can be effective only when good cost and cost-related management practices are developed and implemented. The Department of Energy`s Office of Environmental Management (EM), recognizing this key role of cost management, initiated several cost and cost-related management activities including the Cost Quality Management (CQM) Program. The CQM Program includes an assessment activity, Cost Quality Management Assessments (CQMAs), and a technical assistance effort to improve program/project cost effectiveness. CQMAs provide a tool for establishing a baseline of cost-management practices and for measuring improvement in those practices. The result of the CQMA program is an organization that has an increasing cost-consciousness, improved cost-management skills and abilities, and a commitment to respond to the public`s concerns for both a safe environment and prudent budget outlays. The CQMA program is part of the foundation of quality management practices in DOE. The CQMA process has contributed to better cost and cost-related management practices by providing measurements and feedback; defining the components of a quality cost-management system; and helping sites develop/improve specific cost-management techniques and methods.

  8. Engineering studies related to Skylab program. [assessment of automatic gain control data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hayne, G. S.

    1973-01-01

    The relationship between the S-193 Automatic Gain Control data and the magnitude of received signal power was studied in order to characterize performance parameters for Skylab equipment. The r-factor was used for the assessment and is defined to be less than unity, and a function of off-nadir angle, ocean surface roughness, and receiver signal to noise ratio. A digital computer simulation was also used to assess to additive receiver, or white noise. The system model for the digital simulation is described, along with intermediate frequency and video impulse response functions used, details of the input waveforms, and results to date. Specific discussion of the digital computer programs used is also provided.

  9. Quality Assessment of Domesticated Animal Genome Assemblies

    PubMed Central

    Seemann, Stefan E.; Anthon, Christian; Palasca, Oana; Gorodkin, Jan

    2015-01-01

    The era of high-throughput sequencing has made it relatively simple to sequence genomes and transcriptomes of individuals from many species. In order to analyze the resulting sequencing data, high-quality reference genome assemblies are required. However, this is still a major challenge, and many domesticated animal genomes still need to be sequenced deeper in order to produce high-quality assemblies. In the meanwhile, ironically, the extent to which RNAseq and other next-generation data is produced frequently far exceeds that of the genomic sequence. Furthermore, basic comparative analysis is often affected by the lack of genomic sequence. Herein, we quantify the quality of the genome assemblies of 20 domesticated animals and related species by assessing a range of measurable parameters, and we show that there is a positive correlation between the fraction of mappable reads from RNAseq data and genome assembly quality. We rank the genomes by their assembly quality and discuss the implications for genotype analyses. PMID:27279738

  10. External quality assessment of hormone determinations.

    PubMed

    Sturgeon, Catharine M

    2013-12-01

    Hormone determinations are of central importance to the practice of Clinical Endocrinology, and ensuring their correct use and performance is a multidisciplinary responsibility involving clinicians, laboratory staff, manufacturers of diagnostic systems and healthcare regulatory agencies. All these professional groups have, therefore, an interest in external quality assessment (EQA) as an audit tool that can identify areas where use of tests in routine practice requires improvement to reduce risks to patients. This chapter reviews the principles of EQA, and outlines its strengths and limitations, illustrated with example data from the UK National External Quality Assessment Service (UK NEQAS). The immunological nature of many hormone assays, often further complicated by heterogeneity of analyte structure and lack of suitable calibrators, presents special problems for the designers of EQA schemes in ensuring that specimens are appropriate and that target values are accurate. Laboratory users of EQA should have sufficient knowledge of the characteristics of the EQA schemes in which they participate to make informed interpretation of their data. The trend since the 1980s for in-house assays designed in individual laboratories to be superseded by automated assays provided by a small number of diagnostics manufacturers places a special responsibility on manufacturers to ensure reliable assay design and calibration. In collaboration with other parties EQA can help identify priorities for improved assay design and calibration. Although traditionally the focus of EQA has been on assessing the analytical phase it can also make some assessment of other important aspects of performance, e.g. the consistency of reference ranges and how results are interpreted. Overall, EQA has a valuable role both in laboratory accreditation and as an educational resource, thereby helping to ensure and improve the quality of laboratory services that support patient care.

  11. Evaluation of plan quality assurance models for prostate cancer patients based on fully automatically generated Pareto-optimal treatment plans

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Yibing; Breedveld, Sebastiaan; Heijmen, Ben; Petit, Steven F.

    2016-06-01

    IMRT planning with commercial Treatment Planning Systems (TPSs) is a trial-and-error process. Consequently, the quality of treatment plans may not be consistent among patients, planners and institutions. Recently, different plan quality assurance (QA) models have been proposed, that could flag and guide improvement of suboptimal treatment plans. However, the performance of these models was validated using plans that were created using the conventional trail-and-error treatment planning process. Consequently, it is challenging to assess and compare quantitatively the accuracy of different treatment planning QA models. Therefore, we created a golden standard dataset of consistently planned Pareto-optimal IMRT plans for 115 prostate patients. Next, the dataset was used to assess the performance of a treatment planning QA model that uses the overlap volume histogram (OVH). 115 prostate IMRT plans were fully automatically planned using our in-house developed TPS Erasmus-iCycle. An existing OVH model was trained on the plans of 58 of the patients. Next it was applied to predict DVHs of the rectum, bladder and anus of the remaining 57 patients. The predictions were compared with the achieved values of the golden standard plans for the rectum D mean, V 65, and V 75, and D mean of the anus and the bladder. For the rectum, the prediction errors (predicted-achieved) were only  -0.2  ±  0.9 Gy (mean  ±  1 SD) for D mean,-1.0  ±  1.6% for V 65, and  -0.4  ±  1.1% for V 75. For D mean of the anus and the bladder, the prediction error was 0.1  ±  1.6 Gy and 4.8  ±  4.1 Gy, respectively. Increasing the training cohort to 114 patients only led to minor improvements. A dataset of consistently planned Pareto-optimal prostate IMRT plans was generated. This dataset can be used to train new, and validate and compare existing treatment planning QA models, and has been made publicly available. The OVH model was highly accurate

  12. Evaluation of plan quality assurance models for prostate cancer patients based on fully automatically generated Pareto-optimal treatment plans.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yibing; Breedveld, Sebastiaan; Heijmen, Ben; Petit, Steven F

    2016-06-07

    IMRT planning with commercial Treatment Planning Systems (TPSs) is a trial-and-error process. Consequently, the quality of treatment plans may not be consistent among patients, planners and institutions. Recently, different plan quality assurance (QA) models have been proposed, that could flag and guide improvement of suboptimal treatment plans. However, the performance of these models was validated using plans that were created using the conventional trail-and-error treatment planning process. Consequently, it is challenging to assess and compare quantitatively the accuracy of different treatment planning QA models. Therefore, we created a golden standard dataset of consistently planned Pareto-optimal IMRT plans for 115 prostate patients. Next, the dataset was used to assess the performance of a treatment planning QA model that uses the overlap volume histogram (OVH). 115 prostate IMRT plans were fully automatically planned using our in-house developed TPS Erasmus-iCycle. An existing OVH model was trained on the plans of 58 of the patients. Next it was applied to predict DVHs of the rectum, bladder and anus of the remaining 57 patients. The predictions were compared with the achieved values of the golden standard plans for the rectum D mean, V 65, and V 75, and D mean of the anus and the bladder. For the rectum, the prediction errors (predicted-achieved) were only  -0.2  ±  0.9 Gy (mean  ±  1 SD) for D mean,-1.0  ±  1.6% for V 65, and  -0.4  ±  1.1% for V 75. For D mean of the anus and the bladder, the prediction error was 0.1  ±  1.6 Gy and 4.8  ±  4.1 Gy, respectively. Increasing the training cohort to 114 patients only led to minor improvements. A dataset of consistently planned Pareto-optimal prostate IMRT plans was generated. This dataset can be used to train new, and validate and compare existing treatment planning QA models, and has been made publicly available. The OVH model was highly accurate

  13. Automatic assessment of average diaphragm motion trajectory from 4DCT images through machine learning

    PubMed Central

    Li, Guang; Wei, Jie; Huang, Hailiang; Gaebler, Carl Philipp; Yuan, Amy; Deasy, Joseph O

    2016-01-01

    To automatically estimate average diaphragm motion trajectory (ADMT) based on four-dimensional computed tomography (4DCT), facilitating clinical assessment of respiratory motion and motion variation and retrospective motion study. We have developed an effective motion extraction approach and a machine-learning-based algorithm to estimate the ADMT. Eleven patients with 22 sets of 4DCT images (4DCT1 at simulation and 4DCT2 at treatment) were studied. After automatically segmenting the lungs, the differential volume-per-slice (dVPS) curves of the left and right lungs were calculated as a function of slice number for each phase with respective to the full-exhalation. After 5-slice moving average was performed, the discrete cosine transform (DCT) was applied to analyze the dVPS curves in frequency domain. The dimensionality of the spectrum data was reduced by using several lowest frequency coefficients (fv) to account for most of the spectrum energy (Σfv2). Multiple linear regression (MLR) method was then applied to determine the weights of these frequencies by fitting the ground truth—the measured ADMT, which are represented by three pivot points of the diaphragm on each side. The ‘leave-one-out’ cross validation method was employed to analyze the statistical performance of the prediction results in three image sets: 4DCT1, 4DCT2, and 4DCT1 + 4DCT2. Seven lowest frequencies in DCT domain were found to be sufficient to approximate the patient dVPS curves (R = 91%−96% in MLR fitting). The mean error in the predicted ADMT using leave-one-out method was 0.3 ± 1.9 mm for the left-side diaphragm and 0.0 ± 1.4 mm for the right-side diaphragm. The prediction error is lower in 4DCT2 than 4DCT1, and is the lowest in 4DCT1 and 4DCT2 combined. This frequency-analysis-based machine learning technique was employed to predict the ADMT automatically with an acceptable error (0.2 ± 1.6 mm). This volumetric approach is not affected by the presence of the lung tumors

  14. Assessing the Quality of Bioforensic Signatures

    SciTech Connect

    Sego, Landon H.; Holmes, Aimee E.; Gosink, Luke J.; Webb-Robertson, Bobbie-Jo M.; Kreuzer, Helen W.; Anderson, Richard M.; Brothers, Alan J.; Corley, Courtney D.; Tardiff, Mark F.

    2013-06-04

    We present a mathematical framework for assessing the quality of signature systems in terms of fidelity, cost, risk, and utility—a method we refer to as Signature Quality Metrics (SQM). We demonstrate the SQM approach by assessing the quality of a signature system designed to predict the culture medium used to grow a microorganism. The system consists of four chemical assays designed to identify various ingredients that could be used to produce the culture medium. The analytical measurements resulting from any combination of these four assays can be used in a Bayesian network to predict the probabilities that the microorganism was grown using one of eleven culture media. We evaluated fifteen combinations of the signature system by removing one or more of the assays from the Bayes network. We demonstrated that SQM can be used to distinguish between the various combinations in terms of attributes of interest. The approach assisted in clearly identifying assays that were least informative, largely in part because they only could discriminate between very few culture media, and in particular, culture media that are rarely used. There are limitations associated with the data that were used to train and test the signature system. Consequently, our intent is not to draw formal conclusions regarding this particular bioforensic system, but rather to illustrate an analytical approach that could be useful in comparing one signature system to another.

  15. Assessing Assessment Quality: Criteria for Quality Assurance in Design of (Peer) Assessment for Learning--A Review of Research Studies

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tillema, Harm; Leenknecht, Martijn; Segers, Mien

    2011-01-01

    The interest in "assessment for learning" (AfL) has resulted in a search for new modes of assessment that are better aligned to students' learning how to learn. However, with the introduction of new assessment tools, also questions arose with respect to the quality of its measurement. On the one hand, the appropriateness of traditional,…

  16. Performance assessment of an RFID system for automatic surgical sponge detection in a surgery room.

    PubMed

    Dinis, H; Zamith, M; Mendes, P M

    2015-01-01

    A retained surgical instrument is a frequent incident in medical surgery rooms all around the world, despite being considered an avoidable mistake. Hence, an automatic detection solution of the retained surgical instrument is desirable. In this paper, the use of millimeter waves at the 60 GHz band for surgical material RFID purposes is evaluated. An experimental procedure to assess the suitability of this frequency range for short distance communications with multiple obstacles was performed. Furthermore, an antenna suitable to be incorporated in surgical materials, such as sponges, is presented. The antenna's operation characteristics are evaluated as to determine if it is adequate for the studied application over the given frequency range, and under different operating conditions, such as varying sponge water content.

  17. No training blind image quality assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chu, Ying; Mou, Xuanqin; Ji, Zhen

    2014-03-01

    State of the art blind image quality assessment (IQA) methods generally extract perceptual features from the training images, and send them into support vector machine (SVM) to learn the regression model, which could be used to further predict the quality scores of the testing images. However, these methods need complicated training and learning, and the evaluation results are sensitive to image contents and learning strategies. In this paper, two novel blind IQA metrics without training and learning are firstly proposed. The new methods extract perceptual features, i.e., the shape consistency of conditional histograms, from the joint histograms of neighboring divisive normalization transform coefficients of distorted images, and then compare the length attribute of the extracted features with that of the reference images and degraded images in the LIVE database. For the first method, a cluster center is found in the feature attribute space of the natural reference images, and the distance between the feature attribute of the distorted image and the cluster center is adopted as the quality label. The second method utilizes the feature attributes and subjective scores of all the images in the LIVE database to construct a dictionary, and the final quality score is calculated by interpolating the subjective scores of nearby words in the dictionary. Unlike the traditional SVM based blind IQA methods, the proposed metrics have explicit expressions, which reflect the relationships of the perceptual features and the image quality well. Experiment results in the publicly available databases such as LIVE, CSIQ and TID2008 had shown the effectiveness of the proposed methods, and the performances are fairly acceptable.

  18. 42 CFR 493.1289 - Standard: Analytic systems quality assessment.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 5 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Standard: Analytic systems quality assessment. 493... Nonwaived Testing Analytic Systems § 493.1289 Standard: Analytic systems quality assessment. (a) The... through 493.1283. (b) The analytic systems quality assessment must include a review of the...

  19. 42 CFR 493.1299 - Standard: Postanalytic systems quality assessment.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 5 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Standard: Postanalytic systems quality assessment... Nonwaived Testing Postanalytic Systems § 493.1299 Standard: Postanalytic systems quality assessment. (a) The....1291. (b) The postanalytic systems quality assessment must include a review of the effectiveness...

  20. Quality Assessment Dimensions of Distance Teaching/Learning Curriculum Designing

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Volungeviciene, Airina; Tereseviciene, Margarita

    2008-01-01

    The paper presents scientific literature analysis in the area of distance teaching/learning curriculum designing and quality assessment. The aim of the paper is to identify quality assessment dimensions of distance teaching/learning curriculum designing. The authors of the paper agree that quality assessment should be considered during the…

  1. 42 CFR 493.1249 - Standard: Preanalytic systems quality assessment.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 5 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Standard: Preanalytic systems quality assessment... Nonwaived Testing Preanalytic Systems § 493.1249 Standard: Preanalytic systems quality assessment. (a) The....1241 through 493.1242. (b) The preanalytic systems quality assessment must include a review of...

  2. Institutional Quality Assessment of Higher Education: Dimensions, Criteria and Indicators

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Savickiene, Izabela; Pukelis, Kestutis

    2004-01-01

    The article discusses dimensions and criteria, which are used to assess the quality of higher education in different countries. The paper presents dimensions and criteria that could be appropriate for assessment of the quality of higher education at Lithuanian universities. Quality dimensions, assessment criteria and indicators are defined and…

  3. Blind image quality assessment via deep learning.

    PubMed

    Hou, Weilong; Gao, Xinbo; Tao, Dacheng; Li, Xuelong

    2015-06-01

    This paper investigates how to blindly evaluate the visual quality of an image by learning rules from linguistic descriptions. Extensive psychological evidence shows that humans prefer to conduct evaluations qualitatively rather than numerically. The qualitative evaluations are then converted into the numerical scores to fairly benchmark objective image quality assessment (IQA) metrics. Recently, lots of learning-based IQA models are proposed by analyzing the mapping from the images to numerical ratings. However, the learnt mapping can hardly be accurate enough because some information has been lost in such an irreversible conversion from the linguistic descriptions to numerical scores. In this paper, we propose a blind IQA model, which learns qualitative evaluations directly and outputs numerical scores for general utilization and fair comparison. Images are represented by natural scene statistics features. A discriminative deep model is trained to classify the features into five grades, corresponding to five explicit mental concepts, i.e., excellent, good, fair, poor, and bad. A newly designed quality pooling is then applied to convert the qualitative labels into scores. The classification framework is not only much more natural than the regression-based models, but also robust to the small sample size problem. Thorough experiments are conducted on popular databases to verify the model's effectiveness, efficiency, and robustness.

  4. Content-aware objective video quality assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ortiz-Jaramillo, Benhur; Niño-Castañeda, Jorge; Platiša, Ljiljana; Philips, Wilfried

    2016-01-01

    Since the end-user of video-based systems is often a human observer, prediction of user-perceived video quality (PVQ) is an important task for increasing the user satisfaction. Despite the large variety of objective video quality measures (VQMs), their lack of generalizability remains a problem. This is mainly due to the strong dependency between PVQ and video content. Although this problem is well known, few existing VQMs directly account for the influence of video content on PVQ. Recently, we proposed a method to predict PVQ by introducing relevant video content features in the computation of video distortion measures. The method is based on analyzing the level of spatiotemporal activity in the video and using those as parameters of the anthropomorphic video distortion models. We focus on the experimental evaluation of the proposed methodology based on a total of five public databases, four different objective VQMs, and 105 content related indexes. Additionally, relying on the proposed method, we introduce an approach for selecting the levels of video distortions for the purpose of subjective quality assessment studies. Our results suggest that when adequately combined with content related indexes, even very simple distortion measures (e.g., peak signal to noise ratio) are able to achieve high performance, i.e., high correlation between the VQM and the PVQ. In particular, we have found that by incorporating video content features, it is possible to increase the performance of the VQM by up to 20% relative to its noncontent-aware baseline.

  5. Sediment quality and aquatic life assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Adams, W.J. ); Kimerle, R.A.; Barnettt, J.W. Jr. )

    1992-10-01

    The protection of aquatic resources has assumed national and global prominence. Oil spills, medical wastes, and plastic debris presence on beaches, ocean incineration, ocean disposal of garbage and dredged materials, pesticide and fertilizer runoff, contaminated harbors, and diminishing fisheries have focused public attention on the need to adequately protect marine and freshwater resources-including sediments. Sediments are repositories for physical debris and [open quotes]sinks[close quotes] for a wide variety of chemicals. The concern associated with the chemicals sorbed to sediments is that many commercial species and food chain organisms spend a major portion of their life-cycle living in or on aquatic sediments. This provides a pathway for these chemicals to be consumed by higher aquatic life and wildlife, including avian species as well as humans. Direct transfer of chemicals from sediments to organisms is now considered to be a major route of exposure for many species. Concern has increased over the number of incidences of tumors being observed in many species of fish, especially those that have direct contact with sediments. These issues are focusing attention on sediment contamination and highlight the fact that sediments are an important resource. The purposes of this article are to provide background information on the status of sediment assessment in the United States, a review of the existing methods available for assessing sediment quality, an analysis of the complexity and uncertainty of the sediment assessment methodologies, and a proposed approach that utilizes the unique attributes of many of these methods in a tiered sediment assessment strategy. The authors hope that this sediment assessment strategy will help provide a mechanism for achieving cleaner sediments and wate rin the nation's aquatic ecosystems.

  6. Automatic Assessment of Acquisition and Transmission Losses in Indian Remote Sensing Satellite Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roy, D.; Purna Kumari, B.; Manju Sarma, M.; Aparna, N.; Gopal Krishna, B.

    2016-06-01

    The quality of Remote Sensing data is an important parameter that defines the extent of its usability in various applications. The data from Remote Sensing satellites is received as raw data frames at the ground station. This data may be corrupted with data losses due to interferences during data transmission, data acquisition and sensor anomalies. Thus it is important to assess the quality of the raw data before product generation for early anomaly detection, faster corrective actions and product rejection minimization. Manual screening of raw images is a time consuming process and not very accurate. In this paper, an automated process for identification and quantification of losses in raw data like pixel drop out, line loss and data loss due to sensor anomalies is discussed. Quality assessment of raw scenes based on these losses is also explained. This process is introduced in the data pre-processing stage and gives crucial data quality information to users at the time of browsing data for product ordering. It has also improved the product generation workflow by enabling faster and more accurate quality estimation.

  7. Atherosclerotic plaque ultrasound video encoding, wireless transmission, and quality assessment using H.264.

    PubMed

    Panayides, A; Pattichis, M S; Pattichis, Constantinos S; Loizou, C P; Pantziaris, M; Pitsillides, Andreas

    2011-05-01

    We propose a unifying framework for efficient encoding, transmission, and quality assessment of atherosclerotic plaque ultrasound video. The approach is based on a spatially varying encoding scheme, where video-slice quantization parameters are varied as a function of diagnostic significance. Video slices are automatically set based on a segmentation algorithm. They are then encoded using a modified version of H.264/AVC flexible macroblock ordering (FMO) technique that allows variable quality slice encoding and redundant slices (RSs) for resilience over error-prone transmission channels. We evaluate our scheme on a representative collection of ten ultrasound videos of the carotid artery for packet loss rates up to 30%. Extensive simulations incorporating three FMO encoding methods, different quantization parameters, and different packet loss scenarios are investigated. Quality assessment is based on a new clinical rating system that provides independent evaluations of the different parts of the video (subjective). We also use objective video-quality assessment metrics and estimate their correlation to the clinical quality assessment of plaque type. We find that some objective quality assessment measures computed over the plaque video slices gave very good correlations to mean opinion scores (MOSs). Here, MOSs were computed using two medical experts. Experimental results show that the proposed method achieves enhanced performance in noisy environments, while at the same time achieving significant bandwidth demands reductions, providing transmission over 3G (and beyond) wireless networks.

  8. Assessing quality of life in paediatric clinical practice.

    PubMed

    Morrow, Angela M; Quine, Susan; Heaton, Maria D; Craig, Jonathan C

    2010-06-01

    The rising prevalence of children with chronic conditions has made quality of life an increasingly important outcome measure in paediatric practice. The discrepancy between doctors' and patients' perceptions of quality of life makes formal assessment necessary. In this paper we use a case scenario to answer commonly asked questions. What is quality of life and who can assess it? Why assess quality of life in the clinical setting? Is it feasible to measure in routine clinical practice? How is quality of life formally assessed? We provide a basic outline of the language and methods of quality of life assessment and use the case scenario to discuss the process of choosing an appropriate instrument. We conclude that quality of life assessment in clinical practice is feasible and provides benefits for both patients and doctors. The benefits include better informed doctors, improved patient doctor communication and a means to effectively monitor quality of life as a treatment outcome.

  9. X-ray absorptiometry of the breast using mammographic exposure factors: application to units featuring automatic beam quality selection.

    PubMed

    Kotre, C J

    2010-06-01

    A number of studies have identified the relationship between the visual appearance of high breast density at mammography and an increased risk of breast cancer. Approaches to quantify the amount of glandular tissue within the breast from mammography have so far concentrated on image-based methods. Here, it is proposed that the X-ray parameters automatically selected by the mammography unit can be used to estimate the thickness of glandular tissue overlying the automatic exposure sensor area, provided that the unit can be appropriately calibrated. This is a non-trivial task for modern mammography units that feature automatic beam quality selection, as the number of tube potential and X-ray target/filter combinations used to cover the range of breast sizes and compositions can be large, leading to a potentially unworkable number of curve fits and interpolations. Using appropriate models for the attenuation of the glandular breast in conjunction with a constrained set of physical phantom measurements, it is demonstrated that calibration for X-ray absorptiometry can be achieved despite the large number of possible exposure factor combinations employed by modern mammography units. The main source of error on the estimated glandular tissue thickness using this method is shown to be uncertainty in the measured compressed breast thickness. An additional correction for this source of error is investigated and applied. Initial surveys of glandular thickness for a cohort of women undergoing breast screening are presented.

  10. Assessing the Effects of Automatically Delivered Stimulation on the Use of Simple Exercise Tools by Students with Multiple Disabilities.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lancioni, Giulio E.; Singh, Nirbhay N.; O'Reilly, Mark F.; Oliva, Doretta; Campodonico, Francesca; Groeneweg, Jop

    2003-01-01

    This study assessed the effects of automatically delivered stimulation on the activity level and mood of three students with multiple disabilities during their use of a stepper and a stationary bicycle. Stimuli from a pool of favorite stimulus events were delivered electronically while students were actively exercising. Findings indicated the…

  11. Quality Assessment of Landsat Surface Reflectance Products Using MODIS Data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Feng, Min; Huang, Chengquan; Channan, Saurabh; Vermote, Eric; Masek, Jeffrey G.; Townshend, John R.

    2012-01-01

    Surface reflectance adjusted for atmospheric effects is a primary input for land cover change detection and for developing many higher level surface geophysical parameters. With the development of automated atmospheric correction algorithms, it is now feasible to produce large quantities of surface reflectance products using Landsat images. Validation of these products requires in situ measurements, which either do not exist or are difficult to obtain for most Landsat images. The surface reflectance products derived using data acquired by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS), however, have been validated more comprehensively. Because the MODIS on the Terra platform and the Landsat 7 are only half an hour apart following the same orbit, and each of the 6 Landsat spectral bands overlaps with a MODIS band, good agreements between MODIS and Landsat surface reflectance values can be considered indicators of the reliability of the Landsat products, while disagreements may suggest potential quality problems that need to be further investigated. Here we develop a system called Landsat-MODIS Consistency Checking System (LMCCS). This system automatically matches Landsat data with MODIS observations acquired on the same date over the same locations and uses them to calculate a set of agreement metrics. To maximize its portability, Java and open-source libraries were used in developing this system, and object-oriented programming (OOP) principles were followed to make it more flexible for future expansion. As a highly automated system designed to run as a stand-alone package or as a component of other Landsat data processing systems, this system can be used to assess the quality of essentially every Landsat surface reflectance image where spatially and temporally matching MODIS data are available. The effectiveness of this system was demonstrated using it to assess preliminary surface reflectance products derived using the Global Land Survey (GLS) Landsat

  12. Automatic coronary lumen segmentation with partial volume modeling improves lesions' hemodynamic significance assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Freiman, M.; Lamash, Y.; Gilboa, G.; Nickisch, H.; Prevrhal, S.; Schmitt, H.; Vembar, M.; Goshen, L.

    2016-03-01

    The determination of hemodynamic significance of coronary artery lesions from cardiac computed tomography angiography (CCTA) based on blood flow simulations has the potential to improve CCTA's specificity, thus resulting in improved clinical decision making. Accurate coronary lumen segmentation required for flow simulation is challenging due to several factors. Specifically, the partial-volume effect (PVE) in small-diameter lumina may result in overestimation of the lumen diameter that can lead to an erroneous hemodynamic significance assessment. In this work, we present a coronary artery segmentation algorithm tailored specifically for flow simulations by accounting for the PVE. Our algorithm detects lumen regions that may be subject to the PVE by analyzing the intensity values along the coronary centerline and integrates this information into a machine-learning based graph min-cut segmentation framework to obtain accurate coronary lumen segmentations. We demonstrate the improvement in hemodynamic significance assessment achieved by accounting for the PVE in the automatic segmentation of 91 coronary artery lesions from 85 patients. We compare hemodynamic significance assessments by means of fractional flow reserve (FFR) resulting from simulations on 3D models generated by our segmentation algorithm with and without accounting for the PVE. By accounting for the PVE we improved the area under the ROC curve for detecting hemodynamically significant CAD by 29% (N=91, 0.85 vs. 0.66, p<0.05, Delong's test) with invasive FFR threshold of 0.8 as the reference standard. Our algorithm has the potential to facilitate non-invasive hemodynamic significance assessment of coronary lesions.

  13. Automatic Rayleigh scattering mapping system for optical quality evaluation of test masses for gravity wave detectors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yan, Zewu; Zhao, Chunnong; Ju, Li; Gras, Slawomir; Baringa, Pablo; Blair, David G.

    2005-01-01

    This article describes an automatic Rayleigh scattering mapping system (ARSMS), which enables quantitative high-resolution three-dimensional mapping of inhomogeneities in optical materials. The ARSMS allows large high-grade test mass samples for gravitational wave detectors to be evaluated to ensure that an adequate low level of scattering is achieved. The ARSMS combines proprietary camera software with data analysis software and control software to achieve fully automatic operation with graphical user interfaces. This article presents the instrument concept and examples of the output. Device mapping in all degrees of freedom is shown to be better than 0.5mm, with scattering sensitivity better than 0.5ppm/cm. This system is able to scan and map the Rayleigh scattering of large samples in both of cylindrical and rectangular samples using cylindrical and Cartesian coordinates.

  14. Quality assessment of clinical computed tomography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berndt, Dorothea; Luckow, Marlen; Lambrecht, J. Thomas; Beckmann, Felix; Müller, Bert

    2008-08-01

    Three-dimensional images are vital for the diagnosis in dentistry and cranio-maxillofacial surgery. Artifacts caused by highly absorbing components such as metallic implants, however, limit the value of the tomograms. The dominant artifacts observed are blowout and streaks. Investigating the artifacts generated by metallic implants in a pig jaw, the data acquisition for the patients in dentistry should be optimized in a quantitative manner. A freshly explanted pig jaw including related soft-tissues served as a model system. Images were recorded varying the accelerating voltage and the beam current. The comparison with multi-slice and micro computed tomography (CT) helps to validate the approach with the dental CT system (3D-Accuitomo, Morita, Japan). The data are rigidly registered to comparatively quantify their quality. The micro CT data provide a reasonable standard for quantitative data assessment of clinical CT.

  15. Set up of an automatic water quality sampling system in irrigation agriculture.

    PubMed

    Heinz, Emanuel; Kraft, Philipp; Buchen, Caroline; Frede, Hans-Georg; Aquino, Eugenio; Breuer, Lutz

    2013-12-23

    We have developed a high-resolution automatic sampling system for continuous in situ measurements of stable water isotopic composition and nitrogen solutes along with hydrological information. The system facilitates concurrent monitoring of a large number of water and nutrient fluxes (ground, surface, irrigation and rain water) in irrigated agriculture. For this purpose we couple an automatic sampling system with a Wavelength-Scanned Cavity Ring Down Spectrometry System (WS-CRDS) for stable water isotope analysis (δ2H and δ18O), a reagentless hyperspectral UV photometer (ProPS) for monitoring nitrate content and various water level sensors for hydrometric information. The automatic sampling system consists of different sampling stations equipped with pumps, a switch cabinet for valve and pump control and a computer operating the system. The complete system is operated via internet-based control software, allowing supervision from nearly anywhere. The system is currently set up at the International Rice Research Institute (Los Baños, The Philippines) in a diversified rice growing system to continuously monitor water and nutrient fluxes. Here we present the system's technical set-up and provide initial proof-of-concept with results for the isotopic composition of different water sources and nitrate values from the 2012 dry season.

  16. Groundwater quality data from the National Water-Quality Assessment Project, May 2012 through December 2013

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Arnold, Terri L.; DeSimone, Leslie A.; Bexfield, Laura M.; Lindsey, Bruce D.; Barlow, Jeannie R.; Kulongoski, Justin T.; Musgrove, Marylynn; Kingsbury, James A.; Belitz, Kenneth

    2016-06-20

    Groundwater-quality data were collected from 748 wells as part of the National Water-Quality Assessment Project of the U.S. Geological Survey National Water-Quality Program from May 2012 through December 2013. The data were collected from four types of well networks: principal aquifer study networks, which assess the quality of groundwater used for public water supply; land-use study networks, which assess land-use effects on shallow groundwater quality; major aquifer study networks, which assess the quality of groundwater used for domestic supply; and enhanced trends networks, which evaluate the time scales during which groundwater quality changes. Groundwater samples were analyzed for a large number of water-quality indicators and constituents, including major ions, nutrients, trace elements, volatile organic compounds, pesticides, and radionuclides. These groundwater quality data are tabulated in this report. Quality-control samples also were collected; data from blank and replicate quality-control samples are included in this report.

  17. Assessing Negative Automatic Thoughts: Psychometric Properties of the Turkish Version of the Cognition Checklist

    PubMed Central

    Batmaz, Sedat; Ahmet Yuncu, Ozgur; Kocbiyik, Sibel

    2015-01-01

    Background: Beck’s theory of emotional disorder suggests that negative automatic thoughts (NATs) and the underlying schemata affect one’s way of interpreting situations and result in maladaptive coping strategies. Depending on their content and meaning, NATs are associated with specific emotions, and since they are usually quite brief, patients are often more aware of the emotion they feel. This relationship between cognition and emotion, therefore, is thought to form the background of the cognitive content specificity hypothesis. Researchers focusing on this hypothesis have suggested that instruments like the cognition checklist (CCL) might be an alternative to make a diagnostic distinction between depression and anxiety. Objectives: The aim of the present study was to assess the psychometric properties of the Turkish version of the CCL in a psychiatric outpatient sample. Patients and Methods: A total of 425 psychiatric outpatients 18 years of age and older were recruited. After a structured diagnostic interview, the participants completed the hospital anxiety depression scale (HADS), the automatic thoughts questionnaire (ATQ), and the CCL. An exploratory factor analysis was performed, followed by an oblique rotation. The internal consistency, test-retest reliability, and concurrent and discriminant validity analyses were undertaken. Results: The internal consistency of the CCL was excellent (Cronbach’s α = 0.95). The test-retest correlation coefficients were satisfactory (r = 0.80, P < 0.001 for CCL-D, and r = 0.79, P < 0.001 for CCL-A). The exploratory factor analysis revealed that a two-factor solution best fit the data. This bidimensional factor structure explained 51.27 % of the variance of the scale. The first factor consisted of items related to anxious cognitions, and the second factor of depressive cognitions. The CCL subscales significantly correlated with the ATQ (rs 0.44 for the CCL-D, and 0.32 for the CCL-A) as well as the other measures of

  18. Quality assessment of digital annotated ECG data from clinical trials by the FDA ECG Warehouse.

    PubMed

    Sarapa, Nenad

    2007-09-01

    The FDA mandates that digital electrocardiograms (ECGs) from 'thorough' QTc trials be submitted into the ECG Warehouse in Health Level 7 extended markup language format with annotated onset and offset points of waveforms. The FDA did not disclose the exact Warehouse metrics and minimal acceptable quality standards. The author describes the Warehouse scoring algorithms and metrics used by FDA, points out ways to improve FDA review and suggests Warehouse benefits for pharmaceutical sponsors. The Warehouse ranks individual ECGs according to their score for each quality metric and produces histogram distributions with Warehouse-specific thresholds that identify ECGs of questionable quality. Automatic Warehouse algorithms assess the quality of QT annotation and duration of manual QT measurement by the central ECG laboratory.

  19. Automatic roof plane detection and analysis in airborne lidar point clouds for solar potential assessment.

    PubMed

    Jochem, Andreas; Höfle, Bernhard; Rutzinger, Martin; Pfeifer, Norbert

    2009-01-01

    A relative height threshold is defined to separate potential roof points from the point cloud, followed by a segmentation of these points into homogeneous areas fulfilling the defined constraints of roof planes. The normal vector of each laser point is an excellent feature to decompose the point cloud into segments describing planar patches. An object-based error assessment is performed to determine the accuracy of the presented classification. It results in 94.4% completeness and 88.4% correctness. Once all roof planes are detected in the 3D point cloud, solar potential analysis is performed for each point. Shadowing effects of nearby objects are taken into account by calculating the horizon of each point within the point cloud. Effects of cloud cover are also considered by using data from a nearby meteorological station. As a result the annual sum of the direct and diffuse radiation for each roof plane is derived. The presented method uses the full 3D information for both feature extraction and solar potential analysis, which offers a number of new applications in fields where natural processes are influenced by the incoming solar radiation (e.g., evapotranspiration, distribution of permafrost). The presented method detected fully automatically a subset of 809 out of 1,071 roof planes where the arithmetic mean of the annual incoming solar radiation is more than 700 kWh/m(2).

  20. Improving Automatic English Writing Assessment Using Regression Trees and Error-Weighting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Kong-Joo; Kim, Jee-Eun

    The proposed automated scoring system for English writing tests provides an assessment result including a score and diagnostic feedback to test-takers without human's efforts. The system analyzes an input sentence and detects errors related to spelling, syntax and content similarity. The scoring model has adopted one of the statistical approaches, a regression tree. A scoring model in general calculates a score based on the count and the types of automatically detected errors. Accordingly, a system with higher accuracy in detecting errors raises the accuracy in scoring a test. The accuracy of the system, however, cannot be fully guaranteed for several reasons, such as parsing failure, incompleteness of knowledge bases, and ambiguous nature of natural language. In this paper, we introduce an error-weighting technique, which is similar to term-weighting widely used in information retrieval. The error-weighting technique is applied to judge reliability of the errors detected by the system. The score calculated with the technique is proven to be more accurate than the score without it.

  1. Automatic Roof Plane Detection and Analysis in Airborne Lidar Point Clouds for Solar Potential Assessment

    PubMed Central

    Jochem, Andreas; Höfle, Bernhard; Rutzinger, Martin; Pfeifer, Norbert

    2009-01-01

    A relative height threshold is defined to separate potential roof points from the point cloud, followed by a segmentation of these points into homogeneous areas fulfilling the defined constraints of roof planes. The normal vector of each laser point is an excellent feature to decompose the point cloud into segments describing planar patches. An object-based error assessment is performed to determine the accuracy of the presented classification. It results in 94.4% completeness and 88.4% correctness. Once all roof planes are detected in the 3D point cloud, solar potential analysis is performed for each point. Shadowing effects of nearby objects are taken into account by calculating the horizon of each point within the point cloud. Effects of cloud cover are also considered by using data from a nearby meteorological station. As a result the annual sum of the direct and diffuse radiation for each roof plane is derived. The presented method uses the full 3D information for both feature extraction and solar potential analysis, which offers a number of new applications in fields where natural processes are influenced by the incoming solar radiation (e.g., evapotranspiration, distribution of permafrost). The presented method detected fully automatically a subset of 809 out of 1,071 roof planes where the arithmetic mean of the annual incoming solar radiation is more than 700 kWh/m2. PMID:22346695

  2. 42 CFR 493.1289 - Standard: Analytic systems quality assessment.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 5 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Standard: Analytic systems quality assessment. 493... Nonwaived Testing Analytic Systems § 493.1289 Standard: Analytic systems quality assessment. (a) The..., assess, and when indicated, correct problems identified in the analytic systems specified in §§...

  3. 42 CFR 493.1289 - Standard: Analytic systems quality assessment.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 5 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Standard: Analytic systems quality assessment. 493... Nonwaived Testing Analytic Systems § 493.1289 Standard: Analytic systems quality assessment. (a) The..., assess, and when indicated, correct problems identified in the analytic systems specified in §§...

  4. The Impact of Quality Assessment in Universities: Portuguese Students' Perceptions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cardoso, Sonia; Santiago, Rui; Sarrico, Claudia S.

    2012-01-01

    Despite being one of the major reasons for the development of quality assessment, students seem relatively unaware of its potential impact. Since one of the main purposes of assessment is to provide students with information on the quality of universities, this lack of awareness brings in to question the effectiveness of assessment as a device for…

  5. Indoor Air Quality Building Education and Assessment Model

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    The Indoor Air Quality Building Education and Assessment Model (I-BEAM), released in 2002, is a guidance tool designed for use by building professionals and others interested in indoor air quality in commercial buildings.

  6. Indoor Air Quality Building Education and Assessment Model Forms

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    The Indoor Air Quality Building Education and Assessment Model (I-BEAM) is a guidance tool designed for use by building professionals and others interested in indoor air quality in commercial buildings.

  7. Automatic Evaluation of Voice Quality Using Text-Based Laryngograph Measurements and Prosodic Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Haderlein, Tino; Schwemmle, Cornelia; Döllinger, Michael; Matoušek, Václav; Ptok, Martin; Nöth, Elmar

    2015-01-01

    Due to low intra- and interrater reliability, perceptual voice evaluation should be supported by objective, automatic methods. In this study, text-based, computer-aided prosodic analysis and measurements of connected speech were combined in order to model perceptual evaluation of the German Roughness-Breathiness-Hoarseness (RBH) scheme. 58 connected speech samples (43 women and 15 men; 48.7 ± 17.8 years) containing the German version of the text “The North Wind and the Sun” were evaluated perceptually by 19 speech and voice therapy students according to the RBH scale. For the human-machine correlation, Support Vector Regression with measurements of the vocal fold cycle irregularities (CFx) and the closed phases of vocal fold vibration (CQx) of the Laryngograph and 33 features from a prosodic analysis module were used to model the listeners' ratings. The best human-machine results for roughness were obtained from a combination of six prosodic features and CFx (r = 0.71, ρ = 0.57). These correlations were approximately the same as the interrater agreement among human raters (r = 0.65, ρ = 0.61). CQx was one of the substantial features of the hoarseness model. For hoarseness and breathiness, the human-machine agreement was substantially lower. Nevertheless, the automatic analysis method can serve as the basis for a meaningful objective support for perceptual analysis. PMID:26136813

  8. Food quality assessment by NIR hyperspectral imaging

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Whitworth, Martin B.; Millar, Samuel J.; Chau, Astor

    2010-04-01

    Near infrared reflectance (NIR) spectroscopy is well established in the food industry for rapid compositional analysis of bulk samples. NIR hyperspectral imaging provides new opportunities to measure the spatial distribution of components such as moisture and fat, and to identify and measure specific regions of composite samples. An NIR hyperspectral imaging system has been constructed for food research applications, incorporating a SWIR camera with a cooled 14 bit HgCdTe detector and N25E spectrograph (Specim Ltd, Finland). Samples are scanned in a pushbroom mode using a motorised stage. The system has a spectral resolution of 256 pixels covering a range of 970-2500 nm and a spatial resolution of 320 pixels covering a swathe adjustable from 8 to 300 mm. Images are acquired at a rate of up to 100 lines s-1, enabling samples to be scanned within a few seconds. Data are captured using SpectralCube software (Specim) and analysed using ENVI and IDL (ITT Visual Information Solutions). Several food applications are presented. The strength of individual absorbance bands enables the distribution of particular components to be assessed. Examples are shown for detection of added gluten in wheat flour and to study the effect of processing conditions on fat distribution in chips/French fries. More detailed quantitative calibrations have been developed to study evolution of the moisture distribution in baguettes during storage at different humidities, to assess freshness of fish using measurements of whole cod and fillets, and for prediction of beef quality by identification and separate measurement of lean and fat regions.

  9. Quality of life assessment in haemophilia.

    PubMed

    Bullinger, Monika; von Mackensen, Sylvia

    2004-03-01

    Quality of life (QoL) is a recent focus of research in haemophilia. It can be defined--in analogy to the World Health Organization (WHO) definition of health--as patient-perceived wellbeing and function in terms of physical, emotional, mental, social and behavioural life domains. The paper describes conceptual, methodological and practical foundations of QoL research in adults and children at an international level. It then proceeds to review the QoL literature in the field of haemophilia. With regard to assessment of QoL in haemophilia patients, both generic and very recently targeted instruments have been applied. Recent publications have focused on describing QoL in adults, showing specific impairments in terms of physical function (arthropathy) and mental wellbeing (HIV infection) as well as focusing on the cost-benefit (QoL) ratio of haemophilia care. In paediatric haemophilia, research has suggested the beneficial QoL outcomes with prophylaxis and stressed the role of the family for patients' wellbeing and function. QoL research is a relevant area for haemophilia research which should be pursued further.

  10. Microbial quality assessment of household greywater.

    PubMed

    O'Toole, Joanne; Sinclair, Martha; Malawaraarachchi, Manori; Hamilton, Andrew; Barker, S Fiona; Leder, Karin

    2012-09-01

    A monitoring program was undertaken to assess the microbial quality of greywater collected from 93 typical households in Melbourne, Australia. A total of 185 samples, comprising 75 washing machine wash, 74 washing machine rinse and 36 bathroom samples were analysed for the faecal indicator Escherichia coli. Of these, 104 were also analysed for genetic markers of pathogenic E coli and 111 for norovirus (genogroups GI and GII), enterovirus and rotavirus using RT-PCR. Enteric viruses were detected in 20 out of the 111 (18%) samples comprising 16 washing machine wash water and 4 bathroom samples. Eight (7%) samples were positive for enterovirus, twelve (11%) for norovirus genogroup GI, one (1%) for norovirus genogroup GII and another (1%) for rotavirus. Two washing machine samples contained more than one virus. Typical pathogenic E. coli were detected in 3 out of 104 (3%) samples and atypical enteropathogenic E. coli in 11 (11%) of samples. Levels of indicator E. coli were highly variable and the presence of E. coli was not associated with the presence of human enteric viruses in greywater. There was also little correlation between reported gastrointestinal illness in households and detection of pathogens in greywater.

  11. Informatics: essential infrastructure for quality assessment and improvement in nursing.

    PubMed Central

    Henry, S B

    1995-01-01

    In recent decades there have been major advances in the creation and implementation of information technologies and in the development of measures of health care quality. The premise of this article is that informatics provides essential infrastructure for quality assessment and improvement in nursing. In this context, the term quality assessment and improvement comprises both short-term processes such as continuous quality improvement (CQI) and long-term outcomes management. This premise is supported by 1) presentation of a historical perspective on quality assessment and improvement; 2) delineation of the types of data required for quality assessment and improvement; and 3) description of the current and potential uses of information technology in the acquisition, storage, transformation, and presentation of quality data, information, and knowledge. PMID:7614118

  12. Set Up of an Automatic Water Quality Sampling System in Irrigation Agriculture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heinz, Emanuel; Kraft, Philipp; Buchen, Caroline; Frede, Hans-Georg; Aquino, Eugenio; Breuer, Lutz

    2014-05-01

    Climate change has already a large impact on the availability of water resources. Many regions in South-East Asia are assumed to receive less water in the future, dramatically impacting the production of the most important staple food: rice (Oryza sativa L.). Rice is the primary food source for nearly half of the World's population, and is the only cereal that can grow under wetland conditions. Especially anaerobic (flooded) rice fields require high amounts of water but also have higher yields than aerobic produced rice. In the past different methods were developed to reduce the water use in rice paddies, like alternative wetting and drying or the use of mixed cropping systems with aerobic (non-flooded) rice and alternative crops such as maize. A more detailed understanding of water and nutrient cycling in rice-based cropping systems is needed to reduce water use, and requires the investigation of hydrological and biochemical processes as well as transport dynamics at the field scale. New developments in analytical devices permit monitoring parameters at high temporal resolutions and at acceptable costs without much necessary maintenance or analysis over longer periods. Here we present a new type of automatic sampling set-up that facilitates in situ analysis of hydrometric information, stable water isotopes and nitrate concentrations in spatially differentiated agricultural fields. The system facilitates concurrent monitoring of a large number of water and nutrient fluxes (ground, surface, irrigation and rain water) in irrigated agriculture. For this purpose we couple an automatic sampling system with a Wavelength-Scanned Cavity Ring Down Spectrometry System (WS-CRDS) for stable water isotope analysis (δ2H and δ18O), a reagentless hyperspectral UV photometer for monitoring nitrate content and various water level sensors for hydrometric information. The whole system is maintained with special developed software for remote control of the system via internet. We

  13. Dose and Image Quality in Low-dose CT for Urinary Stone Disease: Added Value of Automatic Tube Current Modulation and Iterative Reconstruction Techniques.

    PubMed

    Soenen, Olivier; Balliauw, Christophe; Oyen, Raymond; Zanca, Federica

    2016-05-31

    The aim of this study was to compare dose and image quality (IQ) of a baseline low-dose computed tomography (CT) (fix mAs) vs. an ultra-low-dose CT (automatic tube current modulation, ATCM) in patients with suspected urinary stone disease and to assess the added value of iterative reconstruction. CT examination was performed on 193 patients (103 baseline low-dose, 90 ultra-low-dose). Filtered back projection (FBP) was used for both protocols, and Sinogram Affirmed Iterative Reconstruction (SAFIRE) was used for the ultra-low-dose protocol only. Dose and ureter stones information were collected for both protocols. Subjective IQ was assessed by two radiologists scoring noise, visibility of the ureter and overall IQ. Objective IQ (contrast-to-noise ratio, CNR) was assessed for the ultra-low-dose protocol only (FBP and SAFIRE). The ultra-low-dose protocol (ATCM) showed a 22% decrease in mean effective dose (p < 0.001) and improved visibility of the pelvic ureter (p = 0.02). CNR was higher for SAFIRE (p < 0.0001). SAFIRE improves the objective IQ, but not the subjective IQ for the chosen clinical task.

  14. Semi-automatic assessment of pediatric hydronephrosis severity in 3D ultrasound

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cerrolaza, Juan J.; Otero, Hansel; Yao, Peter; Biggs, Elijah; Mansoor, Awais; Ardon, Roberto; Jago, James; Peters, Craig A.; Linguraru, Marius George

    2016-03-01

    Hydronephrosis is the most common abnormal finding in pediatric urology. Thanks to its non-ionizing nature, ultrasound (US) imaging is the preferred diagnostic modality for the evaluation of the kidney and the urinary track. However, due to the lack of correlation of US with renal function, further invasive and/or ionizing studies might be required (e.g., diuretic renograms). This paper presents a computer-aided diagnosis (CAD) tool for the accurate and objective assessment of pediatric hydronephrosis based on morphological analysis of kidney from 3DUS scans. The integration of specific segmentation tools in the system, allows to delineate the relevant renal structures from 3DUS scans of the patients with minimal user interaction, and the automatic computation of 90 anatomical features. Using the washout half time (T1/2) as indicative of renal obstruction, an optimal subset of predictive features is selected to differentiate, with maximum sensitivity, those severe cases where further attention is required (e.g., in the form of diuretic renograms), from the noncritical ones. The performance of this new 3DUS-based CAD system is studied for two clinically relevant T1/2 thresholds, 20 and 30 min. Using a dataset of 20 hydronephrotic cases, pilot experiments show how the system outperforms previous 2D implementations by successfully identifying all the critical cases (100% of sensitivity), and detecting up to 100% (T1/2 = 20 min) and 67% (T1/2 = 30 min) of non-critical ones for T1/2 thresholds of 20 and 30 min, respectively.

  15. A Regression-Based Family of Measures for Full-Reference Image Quality Assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oszust, Mariusz

    2016-12-01

    The advances in the development of imaging devices resulted in the need of an automatic quality evaluation of displayed visual content in a way that is consistent with human visual perception. In this paper, an approach to full-reference image quality assessment (IQA) is proposed, in which several IQA measures, representing different approaches to modelling human visual perception, are efficiently combined in order to produce objective quality evaluation of examined images, which is highly correlated with evaluation provided by human subjects. In the paper, an optimisation problem of selection of several IQA measures for creating a regression-based IQA hybrid measure, or a multimeasure, is defined and solved using a genetic algorithm. Experimental evaluation on four largest IQA benchmarks reveals that the multimeasures obtained using the proposed approach outperform state-of-the-art full-reference IQA techniques, including other recently developed fusion approaches.

  16. In Search of Quality Criteria in Peer Assessment Practices

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ploegh, Karin; Tillema, Harm H.; Segers, Mien S. R.

    2009-01-01

    With the increasing popularity of peer assessment as an assessment tool, questions may arise about its measurement quality. Among such questions, the extent peer assessment practices adhere to standards of measurement. It has been claimed that new forms of assessment, require new criteria to judge their validity and reliability, since they aim for…

  17. Transitioning sediment quality assessment into regulations: Challenges and solutions in implementing California's sediment quality objectives.

    PubMed

    Beegan, Chris; Bay, Steven M

    2012-10-01

    Development and promulgation of sediment quality criteria represents a substantial challenge for water quality agencies. Unlike water quality programs that rely on individual chemical thresholds to assess water quality, the complex processes affecting contaminant bioavailability in sediments preclude the use of contaminant concentrations to independently assess impacts or identify cause. Various multiple line of evidence approaches (e.g., sediment quality triad) have been developed for sediment quality assessment, but such frameworks are rarely fully incorporated into statewide regulatory programs due to a lack of standardized and validated tools. In 2003, California's State Water Resources Control Board (State Water Board) initiated development of sediment quality criteria and an assessment framework that required the developers to resolve many challenging technical and policy related issues to the satisfaction of stakeholders, scientists, and the general public. The first part of this multiyear effort has been completed and resulted in the development and validation of an integrated collection of tools, thresholds, and a data interpretation framework for assessing sediment contamination impacts on benthic community condition. The State Water Board's narrative sediment quality criteria and assessment framework became effective in 2009, following US Environmental Protection Agency approval. The results of this effort are described in a series of 6 articles published in this issue of Integrated Environmental Assessment and Management. The articles describe: 1) a multiple line of evidence framework for data integration and assessment, 2) calibration and evaluation of sediment quality guidelines for predicting toxic responses, 3) development and evaluation of sediment quality guidelines with respect to benthic macrofauna responses, 4) selection of toxicity test methods and thresholds, 5) identification and characterization of benthic community assemblages, 6) the

  18. Automatic detection of retina disease: robustness to image quality and localization of anatomy structure.

    PubMed

    Karnowski, T P; Aykac, D; Giancardo, L; Li, Y; Nichols, T; Tobin, K W; Chaum, E

    2011-01-01

    The automated detection of diabetic retinopathy and other eye diseases in images of the retina has great promise as a low-cost method for broad-based screening. Many systems in the literature which perform automated detection include a quality estimation step and physiological feature detection, including the vascular tree and the optic nerve / macula location. In this work, we study the robustness of an automated disease detection method with respect to the accuracy of the optic nerve location and the quality of the images obtained as judged by a quality estimation algorithm. The detection algorithm features microaneurysm and exudate detection followed by feature extraction on the detected population to describe the overall retina image. Labeled images of retinas ground-truthed to disease states are used to train a supervised learning algorithm to identify the disease state of the retina image and exam set. Under the restrictions of high confidence optic nerve detections and good quality imagery, the system achieves a sensitivity and specificity of 94.8% and 78.7% with area-under-curve of 95.3%. Analysis of the effect of constraining quality and the distinction between mild non-proliferative diabetic retinopathy, normal retina images, and more severe disease states is included.

  19. Educational Quality Assessment: Manual for Interpreting School Reports.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pennsylvania State Dept. of Education, Harrisburg. Bureau of Educational Quality Assessment.

    The results of the Pennsylvania Educational Quality Assessment program, Phase II, are interpreted. The first section of the manual presents a statement of each of the Ten Goals of Quality Education which served as the basis of the assessment. Also included are the key items on the questionnaires administered to 5th and 11th grade students. The…

  20. Quality Assessment of Internationalised Studies: Theory and Practice

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Juknyte-Petreikiene, Inga

    2013-01-01

    The article reviews forms of higher education internationalisation at an institutional level. The relevance of theoretical background of internationalised study quality assessment is highlighted and definitions of internationalised studies quality are presented. Existing methods of assessment of higher education internationalisation are criticised…

  1. Assessment and the Quality of Educational Programmes: What Constitutes Evidence?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shay, Sueellen; Jawitz, Jeff

    2005-01-01

    In a climate of growing accountability for Higher Education, there is an increased demand on assessment to play an evaluative role. National, professional and institutional quality assurance systems expect that the assessment of student performance can be used to evaluate the quality of teachers, learners, programmes and even institutions for the…

  2. Assessing the Quality of a Student-Generated Question Repository

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bates, Simon P.; Galloway, Ross K.; Riise, Jonathan; Homer, Danny

    2014-01-01

    We present results from a study that categorizes and assesses the quality of questions and explanations authored by students in question repositories produced as part of the summative assessment in introductory physics courses over two academic sessions. Mapping question quality onto the levels in the cognitive domain of Bloom's taxonomy, we find…

  3. Different Academics' Characteristics, Different Perceptions on Quality Assessment?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cardoso, Sonia; Rosa, Maria Joao; Santos, Cristina S.

    2013-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to explore Portuguese academics' perceptions on higher education quality assessment objectives and purposes, in general, and on the recently implemented system for higher education quality assessment and accreditation, in particular. It aims to discuss the differences of those perceptions dependent on some…

  4. Development and Validation of Assessing Quality Teaching Rubrics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chen, Weiyun; Mason, Steve; Hammond-Bennett, Austin; Zlamout, Sandy

    2014-01-01

    Purpose: This study aimed at examining the psychometric properties of the Assessing Quality Teaching Rubric (AQTR) that was designed to assess in-service teachers' quality levels of teaching practices in daily lessons. Methods: 45 physical education lessons taught by nine physical education teachers to students in grades K-5 were videotaped. They…

  5. Educational Quality, Outcomes Assessment, and Policy Change: The Virginia Example

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Culver, Steve

    2010-01-01

    The higher education system in the Commonwealth of Virginia in the United States provides a case model for how discussions regarding educational quality and assessment of that quality have affected institutions' policy decisions and implementation. Using Levin's (1998) policy analysis framework, this essay explores how assessment of student…

  6. Higher Education Quality Assessment in China: An Impact Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Liu, Shuiyun

    2015-01-01

    This research analyses an external higher education quality assessment scheme in China, namely, the Quality Assessment of Undergraduate Education (QAUE) scheme. Case studies were conducted in three Chinese universities with different statuses. Analysis shows that the evaluated institutions responded to the external requirements of the QAUE…

  7. Academics' Perceptions on the Purposes of Quality Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rosa, Maria J.; Sarrico, Claudia S.; Amaral, Alberto

    2012-01-01

    The accountability versus improvement debate is an old one. Although being traditionally considered dichotomous purposes of higher education quality assessment, some authors defend the need of balancing both in quality assessment systems. This article goes a step further and contends that not only they should be balanced but also that other…

  8. Assessing Pre-Service Teachers' Quality Teaching Practices

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chen, Weiyun; Hendricks, Kristin; Archibald, Kelsi

    2011-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to design and validate the Assessing Quality Teaching Rubrics (AQTR) that assesses the pre-service teachers' quality teaching practices in a live lesson or a videotaped lesson. Twenty-one lessons taught by 13 Physical Education Teacher Education (PETE) students were videotaped. The videotaped lessons were evaluated…

  9. Research Quality Assessment in Education: Impossible Science, Possible Art?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bridges, David

    2009-01-01

    For better or for worse, the assessment of research quality is one of the primary drivers of the behaviour of the academic community with all sorts of potential for distorting that behaviour. So, if you are going to assess research quality, how do you do it? This article explores some of the problems and possibilities, with particular reference to…

  10. Assessing quality of care for African Americans with hypertension.

    PubMed

    Peters, Rosalind M; Benkert, Ramona; Dinardo, Ellen; Templin, Thomas

    2007-01-01

    African Americans bear a disproportionate burden of hypertension. A causal-modeling design, using Donabedian's Quality Framework, tested hypothesized relationships among structure, process, and outcome variables to assess quality of care provided to this population. Structural assessment revealed that administrative and staff organization affected patients' trust in their provider and satisfaction with their care. Interpersonal process factors of racism, cultural mistrust, and trust in providers had a significant effect on satisfaction, and perceived racism had a negative effect on blood pressure (BP). Poorer quality in technical processes of care was associated with higher BP. Findings support the utility of Donabedian's framework for assessing quality of care in a disease-specific population.

  11. Quality Assurance of Assessment and Moderation Discourses Involving Sessional Staff

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Grainger, Peter; Adie, Lenore; Weir, Katie

    2016-01-01

    Quality assurance is a major agenda in tertiary education. The casualisation of academic work, especially in teaching, is also a quality assurance issue. Casual or sessional staff members teach and assess more than 50% of all university courses in Australia, and yet the research in relation to the role sessional staff play in quality assurance of…

  12. Assessment of the Quality Management Models in Higher Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Basar, Gulsun; Altinay, Zehra; Dagli, Gokmen; Altinay, Fahriye

    2016-01-01

    This study involves the assessment of the quality management models in Higher Education by explaining the importance of quality in higher education and by examining the higher education quality assurance system practices in other countries. The qualitative study was carried out with the members of the Higher Education Planning, Evaluation,…

  13. The Emergence of Quality Assessment in Brazilian Basic Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kauko, Jaakko; Centeno, Vera Gorodski; Candido, Helena; Shiroma, Eneida; Klutas, Anni

    2016-01-01

    The focus in this article is on Brazilian education policy, specifically quality assurance and evaluation. The starting point is that quality, measured by means of large-scale assessments, is one of the key discursive justifications for educational change. The article addresses the questions of how quality evaluation became a significant feature…

  14. On Improving Higher Vocational College Education Quality Assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Xiang; Chen, Yan; Zhang, Jie; Wang, Yi

    Teaching quality assessment is a judgment process by using the theory and technology of education evaluation system to test whether the process and result of teaching have got to a certain quality level. Many vocational schools have established teaching quality assessment systems of their own characteristics as the basic means to do self-examination and teaching behavior adjustment. Combined with the characteristics and requirements of the vocational education and by analyzing the problems exist in contemporary vocational school, form the perspective of the content, assessment criteria and feedback system of the teaching quality assessment to optimize the system, to complete the teaching quality information net and offer suggestions for feedback channels, to make the institutionalization, standardization of the vocational schools and indeed to make contribution for the overall improvement of the quality of vocational schools.

  15. Groundwater quality data from the National Water Quality Assessment Project, May 2012 through December 2013

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Arnold, Terri L.; DeSimone, Leslie; Bexfield, Laura M.; Lindsey, Bruce; Barlow, Jeannie R.; Kulongoski, Justin; Musgrove, Marylynn; Kingsbury, James A.; Belitz, Kenneth

    2016-01-01

    Groundwater-quality data were collected from 748 wells as part of the National Water-Quality Assessment Project of the U.S. Geological Survey National Water-Quality Program from May 2012 through December 2013. The data were collected from four types of well networks: principal aquifer study networks, which assess the quality of groundwater used for public water supply; land-use study networks, which assess land-use effects on shallow groundwater quality; major aquifer study networks, which assess the quality of groundwater used for domestic supply; and enhanced trends networks, which evaluate the time scales during which groundwater quality changes. Groundwater samples were analyzed for a large number of water-quality indicators and constituents, including major ions, nutrients, trace elements, volatile organic compounds, pesticides, and radionuclides. These groundwater quality data are tabulated in a U.S. Geological Survey Data Series Report DS-997 which is available at http://dx.doi.org/10.3133/ds997 and in this data release. Quality-control samples also were collected; data from blank and replicate quality-control samples are included in the related report (DS-997) and this data release. This compressed file contains 28 files of groundwater-quality data in ASCII text tab-delimited format and 28 corresponding metadata in xml format for wells sampled for the U.S. Geological Survey National Water-Quality Assessment Project, May 2012 through December 2013.

  16. Perceived image quality assessment for color images on mobile displays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jang, Hyesung; Kim, Choon-Woo

    2015-01-01

    With increase in size and resolution of mobile displays and advances in embedded processors for image enhancement, perceived quality of images on mobile displays has been drastically improved. This paper presents a quantitative method to evaluate perceived image quality of color images on mobile displays. Three image quality attributes, colorfulness, contrast and brightness, are chosen to represent perceived image quality. Image quality assessment models are constructed based on results of human visual experiments. In this paper, three phase human visual experiments are designed to achieve credible outcomes while reducing time and resources needed for visual experiments. Values of parameters of image quality assessment models are estimated based on results from human visual experiments. Performances of different image quality assessment models are compared.

  17. Assessing the Quality of MT Systems for Hindi to English Translation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kalyani, Aditi; Kumud, Hemant; Pal Singh, Shashi; Kumar, Ajai

    2014-03-01

    Evaluation plays a vital role in checking the quality of MT output. It is done either manually or automatically. Manual evaluation is very time consuming and subjective, hence use of automatic metrics is done most of the times. This paper evaluates the translation quality of different MT Engines for Hindi-English (Hindi data is provided as input and English is obtained as output) using various automatic metrics like BLEU, METEOR etc. Further the comparison automatic evaluation results with Human ranking have also been given.

  18. SOIL QUALITY ASSESSMENT USING FUZZY MODELING

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Maintaining soil productivity is essential if agriculture production systems are to be sustainable, thus soil quality is an essential issue. However, there is a paucity of tools for measurement for the purpose of understanding changes in soil quality. Here the possibility of using fuzzy modeling t...

  19. A Network Approach to Curriculum Quality Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jordens, J. Zoe; Zepke, Nick

    2009-01-01

    This paper argues for an alternative approach to quality assurance in New Zealand universities that locates evaluation not with external auditors but with members of the teaching team. In the process, aspects of network theories are introduced as the basis for an approach to quality assurance. From this, the concept of networks is extended to…

  20. Germination tests for assessing biochar quality

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Understanding the impact of biochar quality on soil productivity is crucial to the agronomic acceptance of biochar amendments. Our objective in this study was to develop a quick and reliable screening procedures to characterize the quality of biochar amendments. Biochars were evaluated by both seed ...

  1. Comparison of High and Low Density Airborne LIDAR Data for Forest Road Quality Assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kiss, K.; Malinen, J.; Tokola, T.

    2016-06-01

    Good quality forest roads are important for forest management. Airborne laser scanning data can help create automatized road quality detection, thus avoiding field visits. Two different pulse density datasets have been used to assess road quality: high-density airborne laser scanning data from Kiihtelysvaara and low-density data from Tuusniemi, Finland. The field inventory mainly focused on the surface wear condition, structural condition, flatness, road side vegetation and drying of the road. Observations were divided into poor, satisfactory and good categories based on the current Finnish quality standards used for forest roads. Digital Elevation Models were derived from the laser point cloud, and indices were calculated to determine road quality. The calculated indices assessed the topographic differences on the road surface and road sides. The topographic position index works well in flat terrain only, while the standardized elevation index described the road surface better if the differences are bigger. Both indices require at least a 1 metre resolution. High-density data is necessary for analysis of the road surface, and the indices relate mostly to the surface wear and flatness. The classification was more precise (31-92%) than on low-density data (25-40%). However, ditch detection and classification can be carried out using the sparse dataset as well (with a success rate of 69%). The use of airborne laser scanning data can provide quality information on forest roads.

  2. Automatic assessment of volume asymmetries applied to hip abductor muscles in patients with hip arthroplasty

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klemt, Christian; Modat, Marc; Pichat, Jonas; Cardoso, M. J.; Henckel, Joahnn; Hart, Alister; Ourselin, Sebastien

    2015-03-01

    Metal-on-metal (MoM) hip arthroplasties have been utilised over the last 15 years to restore hip function for 1.5 million patients worldwide. Althoug widely used, this hip arthroplasty releases metal wear debris which lead to muscle atrophy. The degree of muscle wastage differs across patients ranging from mild to severe. The longterm outcomes for patients with MoM hip arthroplasty are reduced for increasing degrees of muscle atrophy, highlighting the need to automatically segment pathological muscles. The automated segmentation of pathological soft tissues is challenging as these lack distinct boundaries and morphologically differ across subjects. As a result, there is no method reported in the literature which has been successfully applied to automatically segment pathological muscles. We propose the first automated framework to delineate severely atrophied muscles by applying a novel automated segmentation propagation framework to patients with MoM hip arthroplasty. The proposed algorithm was used to automatically quantify muscle wastage in these patients.

  3. Comparison of water-quality samples collected by siphon samplers and automatic samplers in Wisconsin

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Graczyk, David J.; Robertson, Dale M.; Rose, William J.; Steur, Jeffrey J.

    2000-01-01

    In small streams, flow and water-quality concentrations often change quickly in response to meteorological events. Hydrologists, field technicians, or locally hired stream ob- servers involved in water-data collection are often unable to reach streams quickly enough to observe or measure these rapid changes. Therefore, in hydrologic studies designed to describe changes in water quality, a combination of manual and automated sampling methods have commonly been used manual methods when flow is relatively stable and automated methods when flow is rapidly changing. Auto- mated sampling, which makes use of equipment programmed to collect samples in response to changes in stage and flow of a stream, has been shown to be an effective method of sampling to describe the rapid changes in water quality (Graczyk and others, 1993). Because of the high cost of automated sampling, however, especially for studies examining a large number of sites, alternative methods have been considered for collecting samples during rapidly changing stream conditions. One such method employs the siphon sampler (fig. 1). also referred to as the "single-stage sampler." Siphon samplers are inexpensive to build (about $25- $50 per sampler), operate, and maintain, so they are cost effective to use at a large number of sites. Their ability to collect samples representing the average quality of water passing though the entire cross section of a stream, however, has not been fully demonstrated for many types of stream sites.

  4. An Approach to Automatic Detection and Hazard Risk Assessment of Large Protruding Rocks in Densely Forested Hilly Region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chhatkuli, S.; Kawamura, K.; Manno, K.; Satoh, T.; Tachibana, K.

    2016-06-01

    Rock-fall along highways or railways presents one of the major threats to transportation and human safety. So far, the only feasible way to detect the locations of such protruding rocks located in the densely forested hilly region is by physically visiting the site and assessing the situation. Highways or railways are stretched to hundreds of kilometres; hence, this traditional approach of determining rock-fall risk zones is not practical to assess the safety throughout the highways or railways. In this research, we have utilized a state-of-the-art airborne LiDAR technology and derived a workflow to automatically detect protruding rocks in densely forested hilly regions and analysed the level of hazard risks they pose. Moreover, we also performed a 3D dynamic simulation of rock-fall to envisage the event. We validated that our proposed technique could automatically detect most of the large protruding rocks in the densely forested hilly region. Automatic extraction of protruding rocks and proper risk zoning could be used to identify the most crucial place that needs the proper protection measures. Hence, the proposed technique would provide an invaluable support for the management and planning of highways and railways safety, especially in the forested hilly region.

  5. Dosimetry and image quality assessment in a direct radiography system

    PubMed Central

    Oliveira, Bruno Beraldo; de Oliveira, Marcio Alves; Paixão, Lucas; Teixeira, Maria Helena Araújo; Nogueira, Maria do Socorro

    2014-01-01

    Objective To evaluate the mean glandular dose with a solid state detector and the image quality in a direct radiography system, utilizing phantoms. Materials and Methods Irradiations were performed with automatic exposure control and polymethyl methacrylate slabs with different thicknesses to calculate glandular dose values. The image quality was evaluated by means of the structures visualized on the images of the phantoms. Results Considering the uncertainty of the measurements, the mean glandular dose results are in agreement with the values provided by the equipment and with internationally adopted reference levels. Results obtained from images of the phantoms were in agreement with the reference values. Conclusion The present study contributes to verify the equipment conformity as regards dose values and image quality. PMID:25741119

  6. Automated signal quality assessment of mobile phone-recorded heart sound signals.

    PubMed

    Springer, David B; Brennan, Thomas; Ntusi, Ntobeko; Abdelrahman, Hassan Y; Zühlke, Liesl J; Mayosi, Bongani M; Tarassenko, Lionel; Clifford, Gari D

    Mobile phones, due to their audio processing capabilities, have the potential to facilitate the diagnosis of heart disease through automated auscultation. However, such a platform is likely to be used by non-experts, and hence, it is essential that such a device is able to automatically differentiate poor quality from diagnostically useful recordings since non-experts are more likely to make poor-quality recordings. This paper investigates the automated signal quality assessment of heart sound recordings performed using both mobile phone-based and commercial medical-grade electronic stethoscopes. The recordings, each 60 s long, were taken from 151 random adult individuals with varying diagnoses referred to a cardiac clinic and were professionally annotated by five experts. A mean voting procedure was used to compute a final quality label for each recording. Nine signal quality indices were defined and calculated for each recording. A logistic regression model for classifying binary quality was then trained and tested. The inter-rater agreement level for the stethoscope and mobile phone recordings was measured using Conger's kappa for multiclass sets and found to be 0.24 and 0.54, respectively. One-third of all the mobile phone-recorded phonocardiogram (PCG) signals were found to be of sufficient quality for analysis. The classifier was able to distinguish good- and poor-quality mobile phone recordings with 82.2% accuracy, and those made with the electronic stethoscope with an accuracy of 86.5%. We conclude that our classification approach provides a mechanism for substantially improving auscultation recordings by non-experts. This work is the first systematic evaluation of a PCG signal quality classification algorithm (using a separate test dataset) and assessment of the quality of PCG recordings captured by non-experts, using both a medical-grade digital stethoscope and a mobile phone.

  7. a Photogrammetric Appraoch for Automatic Traffic Assessment Using Conventional Cctv Camera

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zarrinpanjeh, N.; Dadrassjavan, F.; Fattahi, H.

    2015-12-01

    One of the most practical tools for urban traffic monitoring is CCTV imaging which is widely used for traffic map generation and updating through human surveillance. But due to the expansion of urban road network and the use of huge number of CCTV cameras, visual inspection and updating of traffic sometimes seems to be ineffective and time consuming and therefore not providing real-time robust update. In this paper a method for vehicle detection accounting and speed estimation is proposed to give a more automated solution for traffic assessment. Through removing violating objects and detection of vehicles via morphological filtering and also classification of moving objects at the scene vehicles are counted and traffic speed is estimated. The proposed method is developed and tested using two datasets and evaluation values are computed. The results show that the successfulness of the algorithm decreases by about 12 % due to decrease in illumination quality of imagery.

  8. SU-D-BRD-07: Automatic Patient Data Audit and Plan Quality Check to Support ARIA and Eclipse

    SciTech Connect

    Li, X; Li, H; Wu, Y; Mutic, S; Yang, D

    2014-06-01

    Purpose: To ensure patient safety and treatment quality in RT departments that use Varian ARIA and Eclipse, we developed a computer software system and interface functions that allow previously developed electron chart checking (EcCk) methodologies to support these Varian systems. Methods: ARIA and Eclipse store most patient information in its MSSQL database. We studied the contents in the hundreds database tables and identified the data elements used for patient treatment management and treatment planning. Interface functions were developed in both c-sharp and MATLAB to support data access from ARIA and Eclipse servers using SQL queries. These functions and additional data processing functions allowed the existing rules and logics from EcCk to support ARIA and Eclipse. Dose and structure information are important for plan quality check, however they are not stored in the MSSQL database but as files in Varian private formats, and cannot be processed by external programs. We have therefore implemented a service program, which uses the DB Daemon and File Daemon services on ARIA server to automatically and seamlessly retrieve dose and structure data as DICOM files. This service was designed to 1) consistently monitor the data access requests from EcCk programs, 2) translate the requests for ARIA daemon services to obtain dose and structure DICOM files, and 3) monitor the process and return the obtained DICOM files back to EcCk programs for plan quality check purposes. Results: EcCk, which was previously designed to only support MOSAIQ TMS and Pinnacle TPS, can now support Varian ARIA and Eclipse. The new EcCk software has been tested and worked well in physics new start plan check, IMRT plan integrity and plan quality checks. Conclusion: Methods and computer programs have been implemented to allow EcCk to support Varian ARIA and Eclipse systems. This project was supported by a research grant from Varian Medical System.

  9. Assessment of Quality of Life in Migraine

    PubMed Central

    TAŞKAPILIOĞLU, Özlem; KARLI, Necdet

    2013-01-01

    Quality of life is the perception of an individual’s position in life associated with his objectives, expectations, interests, and standard’s of life. Health-related quality of life, on the other hand, includes satisfaction with his health and emotional reaction to his state of health. Primary headaches are encountered commonly in adults during their most productive years like end of puberty and at the beginning of 50’s. Migraine alone is responsible for 1.3% of years with disability in the world, all headaches together being responsible for twice of this load. Headaches both worsen quality of life of individuals and place a significant burden on the society. This review will focus on the effects of primary headaches, especially migraine, on quality of life and tools used to evaluate these effects.

  10. Space shuttle flying qualities and criteria assessment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Myers, T. T.; Johnston, D. E.; Mcruer, Duane T.

    1987-01-01

    Work accomplished under a series of study tasks for the Flying Qualities and Flight Control Systems Design Criteria Experiment (OFQ) of the Shuttle Orbiter Experiments Program (OEX) is summarized. The tasks involved review of applicability of existing flying quality and flight control system specification and criteria for the Shuttle; identification of potentially crucial flying quality deficiencies; dynamic modeling of the Shuttle Orbiter pilot/vehicle system in the terminal flight phases; devising a nonintrusive experimental program for extraction and identification of vehicle dynamics, pilot control strategy, and approach and landing performance metrics, and preparation of an OEX approach to produce a data archive and optimize use of the data to develop flying qualities for future space shuttle craft in general. Analytic modeling of the Orbiter's unconventional closed-loop dynamics in landing, modeling pilot control strategies, verification of vehicle dynamics and pilot control strategy from flight data, review of various existent or proposed aircraft flying quality parameters and criteria in comparison with the unique dynamic characteristics and control aspects of the Shuttle in landing; and finally a summary of conclusions and recommendations for developing flying quality criteria and design guides for future Shuttle craft.

  11. Teacher Quality and Quality Teaching: Examining the Relationship of a Teacher Assessment to Practice

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hill, Heather C.; Umland, Kristin; Litke, Erica; Kapitula, Laura R.

    2012-01-01

    Multiple-choice assessments are frequently used for gauging teacher quality. However, research seldom examines whether results from such assessments generalize to practice. To illuminate this issue, we compare teacher performance on a mathematics assessment, during mathematics instruction, and by student performance on a state assessment. Poor…

  12. Key Elements for Judging the Quality of a Risk Assessment

    PubMed Central

    Fenner-Crisp, Penelope A.; Dellarco, Vicki L.

    2016-01-01

    Background: Many reports have been published that contain recommendations for improving the quality, transparency, and usefulness of decision making for risk assessments prepared by agencies of the U.S. federal government. A substantial measure of consensus has emerged regarding the characteristics that high-quality assessments should possess. Objective: The goal was to summarize the key characteristics of a high-quality assessment as identified in the consensus-building process and to integrate them into a guide for use by decision makers, risk assessors, peer reviewers and other interested stakeholders to determine if an assessment meets the criteria for high quality. Discussion: Most of the features cited in the guide are applicable to any type of assessment, whether it encompasses one, two, or all four phases of the risk-assessment paradigm; whether it is qualitative or quantitative; and whether it is screening level or highly sophisticated and complex. Other features are tailored to specific elements of an assessment. Just as agencies at all levels of government are responsible for determining the effectiveness of their programs, so too should they determine the effectiveness of their assessments used in support of their regulatory decisions. Furthermore, if a nongovernmental entity wishes to have its assessments considered in the governmental regulatory decision-making process, then these assessments should be judged in the same rigorous manner and be held to similar standards. Conclusions: The key characteristics of a high-quality assessment can be summarized and integrated into a guide for judging whether an assessment possesses the desired features of high quality, transparency, and usefulness. Citation: Fenner-Crisp PA, Dellarco VL. 2016. Key elements for judging the quality of a risk assessment. Environ Health Perspect 124:1127–1135; http://dx.doi.org/10.1289/ehp.1510483 PMID:26862984

  13. Physical and Chemical Water-Quality Data from Automatic Profiling Systems, Boulder Basin, Lake Mead, Arizona and Nevada, Water Years 2001-04

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rowland, Ryan C.; Westenburg, Craig L.; Veley, Ronald J.; Nylund, Walter E.

    2006-01-01

    Water-quality profile data were collected in Las Vegas Bay and near Sentinel Island in Lake Mead, Arizona and Nevada, from October 2000 to September 2004. The majority of the profiles were completed with automatic variable-buoyancy systems equipped with multiparameter water-quality sondes. Profile data near Sentinel Island were collected in August 2004 with an automatic variable-depth-winch system also equipped with a multiparameter water-quality sonde. Physical and chemical water properties collected and recorded by the profiling systems, including depth, water temperature, specific conductance, pH, dissolved-oxygen concentration, and turbidity are listed in tables and selected water-quality profile data are shown in graphs.

  14. AN ASSESSMENT OF AUTOMATIC SEWER FLOW SAMPLERS (EPA/600/2-75/065)

    EPA Science Inventory

    A brief review of the characteristics of storm and combined sewer flows is given followed by a general discussion of the purposes for and requirements of a sampling program. The desirable characteristics of automatic sampling equipment are set forth and problem areas are outlined...

  15. Quality Assessment of Sharpened Images: Challenges, Methodology, and Objective Metrics.

    PubMed

    Krasula, Lukas; Le Callet, Patrick; Fliegel, Karel; Klima, Milos

    2017-01-10

    Most of the effort in image quality assessment (QA) has been so far dedicated to the degradation of the image. However, there are also many algorithms in the image processing chain that can enhance the quality of an input image. These include procedures for contrast enhancement, deblurring, sharpening, up-sampling, denoising, transfer function compensation, etc. In this work, possible strategies for the quality assessment of sharpened images are investigated. This task is not trivial because the sharpening techniques can increase the perceived quality, as well as introduce artifacts leading to the quality drop (over-sharpening). Here, the framework specifically adapted for the quality assessment of sharpened images and objective metrics comparison in this context is introduced. However, the framework can be adopted in other quality assessment areas as well. The problem of selecting the correct procedure for subjective evaluation was addressed and a subjective test on blurred, sharpened, and over-sharpened images was performed in order to demonstrate the use of the framework. The obtained ground-truth data were used for testing the suitability of state-ofthe- art objective quality metrics for the assessment of sharpened images. The comparison was performed by novel procedure using ROC analyses which is found more appropriate for the task than standard methods. Furthermore, seven possible augmentations of the no-reference S3 metric adapted for sharpened images are proposed. The performance of the metric is significantly improved and also superior over the rest of the tested quality criteria with respect to the subjective data.

  16. A new approach to subjectively assess quality of plenoptic content

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Viola, Irene; Řeřábek, Martin; Ebrahimi, Touradj

    2016-09-01

    Plenoptic content is becoming increasingly popular thanks to the availability of acquisition and display devices. Thanks to image-based rendering techniques, a plenoptic content can be rendered in real time in an interactive manner allowing virtual navigation through the captured scenes. This way of content consumption enables new experiences, and therefore introduces several challenges in terms of plenoptic data processing, transmission and consequently visual quality evaluation. In this paper, we propose a new methodology to subjectively assess the visual quality of plenoptic content. We also introduce a prototype software to perform subjective quality assessment according to the proposed methodology. The proposed methodology is further applied to assess the visual quality of a light field compression algorithm. Results show that this methodology can be successfully used to assess the visual quality of plenoptic content.

  17. Evolving from Quantity to Quality: A New Yardstick for Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fulcher, Keston H.; Orem, Chris D.

    2010-01-01

    Higher education experts tout learning outcomes assessment as a vehicle for program improvement. To this end the authors share a rubric designed explicitly to evaluate the quality of assessment and how it leads to program improvement. The rubric contains six general assessment areas, which are further broken down into 14 elements. Embedded within…

  18. Factors Influencing Assessment Quality in Higher Vocational Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Baartman, Liesbeth; Gulikers, Judith; Dijkstra, Asha

    2013-01-01

    The development of assessments that are fit to assess professional competence in higher vocational education requires a reconsideration of assessment methods, quality criteria and (self)evaluation. This article examines the self-evaluations of nine courses of a large higher vocational education institute. Per course, 4-11 teachers and 3-10…

  19. Dried fruits quality assessment by hyperspectral imaging

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Serranti, Silvia; Gargiulo, Aldo; Bonifazi, Giuseppe

    2012-05-01

    Dried fruits products present different market values according to their quality. Such a quality is usually quantified in terms of freshness of the products, as well as presence of contaminants (pieces of shell, husk, and small stones), defects, mould and decays. The combination of these parameters, in terms of relative presence, represent a fundamental set of attributes conditioning dried fruits humans-senses-detectable-attributes (visual appearance, organolectic properties, etc.) and their overall quality in terms of marketable products. Sorting-selection strategies exist but sometimes they fail when a higher degree of detection is required especially if addressed to discriminate between dried fruits of relatively small dimensions and when aiming to perform an "early detection" of pathogen agents responsible of future moulds and decays development. Surface characteristics of dried fruits can be investigated by hyperspectral imaging (HSI). In this paper, specific and "ad hoc" applications addressed to propose quality detection logics, adopting a hyperspectral imaging (HSI) based approach, are described, compared and critically evaluated. Reflectance spectra of selected dried fruits (hazelnuts) of different quality and characterized by the presence of different contaminants and defects have been acquired by a laboratory device equipped with two HSI systems working in two different spectral ranges: visible-near infrared field (400-1000 nm) and near infrared field (1000-1700 nm). The spectra have been processed and results evaluated adopting both a simple and fast wavelength band ratio approach and a more sophisticated classification logic based on principal component (PCA) analysis.

  20. Exploring the Notion of Quality in Quality Higher Education Assessment in a Collaborative Future

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Maguire, Kate; Gibbs, Paul

    2013-01-01

    The purpose of this article is to contribute to the debate on the notion of quality in higher education with particular focus on "objectifying through articulation" the assessment of quality by professional experts. The article gives an overview of the differentiations of quality as used in higher education. It explores a substantial…

  1. Illinois Quality Counts: QRS Profile. The Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Child Trends, 2010

    2010-01-01

    This paper presents a profile of Illinois' Quality Counts prepared as part of the Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment Study. The profile consists of several sections and their corresponding descriptions including: (1) Program Information; (2) Rating Details; (3) Quality Indicators for Center-Based Programs; (4) Indicators for Family…

  2. Iowa Child Care Quality Rating System: QRS Profile. The Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Child Trends, 2010

    2010-01-01

    This paper presents a profile of Iowa's Child Care Quality Rating System prepared as part of the Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment Study. The profile is divided into the following categories: (1) Program Information; (2) Rating Details; (3) Quality Indicators for Center-Based Programs; (4) Indicators for Family Child Care Programs;…

  3. Oregon Child Care Quality Indicators Program: QRS Profile. The Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Child Trends, 2010

    2010-01-01

    This paper presents a profile of Oregon's Child Care Quality Indicators Program prepared as part of the Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment Study. The profile consists of several sections and their corresponding descriptions including: (1) Program Information; (2) Rating Details; (3) Quality Indicators for Center-Based Programs; (4)…

  4. Palm Beach Quality Counts: QRS Profile. The Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Child Trends, 2010

    2010-01-01

    This paper presents a profile of Palm Beach's Quality Counts prepared as part of the Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment Study. The profile consists of several sections and their corresponding descriptions including: (1) Program Information; (2) Rating Details; (3) Quality Indicators for Center-Based Programs; (4) Indicators for…

  5. Maine Quality for ME: QRS Profile. The Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Child Trends, 2010

    2010-01-01

    This paper presents a profile of Maine's Quality for ME prepared as part of the Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment Study. The profile consists of several sections and their corresponding descriptions including: (1) Program Information; (2) Rating Details; (3) Quality Indicators for Center-Based Programs; (4) Indicators for Family…

  6. Indiana Paths to Quality: QRS Profile. The Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Child Trends, 2010

    2010-01-01

    This paper presents a profile of Indiana's Paths to Quality prepared as part of the Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment Study. The profile consists of several sections and their corresponding descriptions including: (1) Program Information; (2) Rating Details; (3) Quality Indicators for Center-Based Programs; (4) Indicators for…

  7. Missouri Quality Rating System: QRS Profile. The Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Child Trends, 2010

    2010-01-01

    This paper presents a profile of Missouri's Quality Rating System prepared as part of the Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment Study. The profile consists of several sections and their corresponding descriptions including: (1) Program Information; (2) Rating Details; (3) Quality Indicators for Center-Based Programs; (4) Indicators for…

  8. Ohio Step Up to Quality: QRS Profile. The Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Child Trends, 2010

    2010-01-01

    This paper presents a profile of Ohio's Step Up to Quality prepared as part of the Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment Study. The profile consists of several sections and their corresponding descriptions including: (1) Program Information; (2) Rating Details; (3) Quality Indicators for Center-Based Programs; (4) Indicators for Family…

  9. Virginia Star Quality Initiative: QRS Profile. The Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Child Trends, 2010

    2010-01-01

    This paper presents a profile of Virginia's Star Quality Initiative prepared as part of the Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment Study. The profile consists of several sections and their corresponding descriptions including: (1) Program Information; (2) Rating Details; (3) Quality Indicators for Center-Based Programs; (4) Indicators…

  10. New Hampshire Quality Rating System: QRS Profile. The Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Child Trends, 2010

    2010-01-01

    This paper presents a profile of New Hampshire's Quality Rating System prepared as part of the Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment Study. The profile consists of several sections and their corresponding descriptions including: (1) Program Information; (2) Rating Details; (3) Quality Indicators for Center-Based Programs; (4)…

  11. Miami-Dade Quality Counts: QRS Profile. The Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Child Trends, 2010

    2010-01-01

    This paper presents a profile of Miami-Dade's Quality Counts prepared as part of the Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment Study. The profile consists of several sections and their corresponding descriptions including: (1) Program Information; (2) Rating Details; (3) Quality Indicators for Center-Based Programs; (4) Indicators for…

  12. Mississippi Quality Step System: QRS Profile. The Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS)Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Child Trends, 2010

    2010-01-01

    This paper presents a profile of Mississippi's Quality Step System prepared as part of the Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment Study. The profile consists of several sections and their corresponding descriptions including: (1) Program Information; (2) Rating Details; (3) Quality Indicators for Center-Based Programs; (4) Application…

  13. Automatic parameter prediction for image denoising algorithms using perceptual quality features

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mittal, Anish; Moorthy, Anush K.; Bovik, Alan C.

    2012-03-01

    A natural scene statistics (NSS) based blind image denoising approach is proposed, where denoising is performed without knowledge of the noise variance present in the image. We show how such a parameter estimation can be used to perform blind denoising by combining blind parameter estimation with a state-of-the-art denoising algorithm.1 Our experiments show that for all noise variances simulated on a varied image content, our approach is almost always statistically superior to the reference BM3D implementation in terms of perceived visual quality at the 95% confidence level.

  14. Maximising Confidence in Assessment Decision-Making: A Springboard to Quality in Assessment.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Clayton, Berwyn; Booth, Robin; Roy, Sue

    The introduction of training packages has focused attention on the quality of assessment in the Australian vocational education and training (VET) sector on the quality of assessment. For the process of mutual recognition under the Australian Recognition Framework (ARF) to work effectively, there needs to be confidence in assessment decisions made…

  15. Air quality risk assessment and management.

    PubMed

    Chen, Yue; Craig, Lorraine; Krewski, Daniel

    2008-01-01

    This article provides (1) a synthesis of the literature on the linkages between air pollution and human health, (2) an overview of quality management approaches in Canada, the United States, and the European Union (EU), and (3) future directions for air quality research. Numerous studies examining short-term effects of air pollution show significant associations between ambient levels of particulate matter (PM) and other air pollutants and increases in premature mortality and hospitalizations for cardiovascular and respiratory illnesses. Several well-designed epidemiological studies confirmed the adverse long-term effects of PM on both mortality and morbidity. Epidemiological studies also document significant associations between ozone (O3), sulfur (SO2), and nitrogen oxides (NO(x)) and adverse health outcomes; however, the effects of gaseous pollutants are less well documented. Subpopulations that are more susceptible to air pollution include children, the elderly, those with cardiorespiratory disease, and socioeconomically deprived individuals. Canada-wide standards for ambient air concentrations of PM2.5 and O3 were set in 2000, providing air quality targets to be achieved by 2010. In the United States, the Clean Air Act provides the framework for the establishment and review of National Ambient Air Quality Standards for criteria air pollutants and the establishment of emissions standards for hazardous air pollutants. The 1996 European Union's enactment of the Framework Directive for Air Quality established the process for setting Europe-wide limit values for a series of pollutants. The Clean Air for Europe program was established by the European Union to review existing limit values, emission ceilings, and abatement protocols, as set out in the current legislation. These initiatives serve as the legislative framework for air quality management in North America and Europe.

  16. Image quality assessment by preprocessing and full reference model combination

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bianco, S.; Ciocca, G.; Marini, F.; Schettini, R.

    2009-01-01

    This paper focuses on full-reference image quality assessment and presents different computational strategies aimed to improve the robustness and accuracy of some well known and widely used state of the art models, namely the Structural Similarity approach (SSIM) by Wang and Bovik and the S-CIELAB spatial-color model by Zhang and Wandell. We investigate the hypothesis that combining error images with a visual attention model could allow a better fit of the psycho-visual data of the LIVE Image Quality assessment Database Release 2. We show that the proposed quality assessment metric better correlates with the experimental data.

  17. E-Services quality assessment framework for collaborative networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stegaru, Georgiana; Danila, Cristian; Sacala, Ioan Stefan; Moisescu, Mihnea; Mihai Stanescu, Aurelian

    2015-08-01

    In a globalised networked economy, collaborative networks (CNs) are formed to take advantage of new business opportunities. Collaboration involves shared resources and capabilities, such as e-Services that can be dynamically composed to automate CN participants' business processes. Quality is essential for the success of business process automation. Current approaches mostly focus on quality of service (QoS)-based service selection and ranking algorithms, overlooking the process of service composition which requires interoperable, adaptable and secure e-Services to ensure seamless collaboration, data confidentiality and integrity. Lack of assessment of these quality attributes can result in e-Service composition failure. The quality of e-Service composition relies on the quality of each e-Service and on the quality of the composition process. Therefore, there is the need for a framework that addresses quality from both views: product and process. We propose a quality of e-Service composition (QoESC) framework for quality assessment of e-Service composition for CNs which comprises of a quality model for e-Service evaluation and guidelines for quality of e-Service composition process. We implemented a prototype considering a simplified telemedicine use case which involves a CN in e-Healthcare domain. To validate the proposed quality-driven framework, we analysed service composition reliability with and without using the proposed framework.

  18. Total Quality Management: Implications for Educational Assessment.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rankin, Stuart C.

    1992-01-01

    Deming's "System of Profound Knowledge" is even more fundamental than his 14-principle system transformation guide and is based on 4 elements: systems theory, statistical variation, a theory of knowledge, and psychology. Management should revamp total system processes so that quality of product is continually improved. Implications for…

  19. Assessing Students' Spiritual and Religious Qualities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Astin, Alexander W.; Astin, Helen S.; Lindholm, Jennifer A.

    2011-01-01

    This paper describes a comprehensive set of 12 new measures for studying undergraduate students' spiritual and religious development. The three measures of spirituality, four measures of "spiritually related" qualities, and five measures of religiousness demonstrate satisfactory reliability, robustness, and both concurrent and predictive validity.…

  20. Assessment of Curriculum Quality through Alumni Research

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Saunders-Smits, Gillian; de Graaff, Erik

    2012-01-01

    In today's output defined society, alumni are the output of higher education. This article shows how alumni research can be used as an important indicator of curriculum quality. This relatively unexplored area of engineering education research in Europe is highlighted using a case study carried out in the Netherlands, the outcomes of which have…

  1. Quality Assessment in Mexican Higher Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zorilla, Juan Fidel

    1998-01-01

    Examines the results of Mexico's quality-oriented higher-education policies, in place since 1984 and designed to encourage improved faculty performance through economic incentives. The policies were enhanced further in the mid-1990s by establishing medium-term improvement strategies and using external evaluators and international experience to…

  2. A structured multi-block solution-adaptive mesh algorithm with mesh quality assessment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ingram, Clint L.; Laflin, Kelly R.; Mcrae, D. Scott

    1995-01-01

    The dynamic solution adaptive grid algorithm, DSAGA3D, is extended to automatically adapt 2-D structured multi-block grids, including adaption of the block boundaries. The extension is general, requiring only input data concerning block structure, connectivity, and boundary conditions. Imbedded grid singular points are permitted, but must be prevented from moving in space. Solutions for workshop cases 1 and 2 are obtained on multi-block grids and illustrate both increased resolution of and alignment with the solution. A mesh quality assessment criteria is proposed to determine how well a given mesh resolves and aligns with the solution obtained upon it. The criteria is used to evaluate the grid quality for solutions of workshop case 6 obtained on both static and dynamically adapted grids. The results indicate that this criteria shows promise as a means of evaluating resolution.

  3. Automatic method of analysis of OCT images in the assessment of the tooth enamel surface after orthodontic treatment with fixed braces

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Introduction Fixed orthodontic appliances, despite years of research and development, still raise a lot of controversy because of its potentially destructive influence on enamel. Therefore, it is necessary to quantitatively assess the condition and therein the thickness of tooth enamel in order to select the appropriate orthodontic bonding and debonding methodology as well as to assess the quality of enamel after treatment and clean-up procedure in order to choose the most advantageous course of treatment. One of the assessment methods is computed tomography where the measurement of enamel thickness and the 3D reconstruction of image sequences can be performed fully automatically. Material and method OCT images of 180 teeth were obtained from the Topcon 3D OCT-2000 camera. The images were obtained in vitro by performing sequentially 7 stages of treatment on all the teeth: before any interference into enamel, polishing with orthodontic paste, etching and application of a bonding system, orthodontic bracket bonding, orthodontic bracket removal, cleaning off adhesive residue. A dedicated method for the analysis and processing of images involving median filtering, mathematical morphology, binarization, polynomial approximation and the active contour method has been proposed. Results The obtained results enable automatic measurement of tooth enamel thickness in 5 seconds using the Core i5 CPU M460 @ 2.5GHz 4GB RAM. For one patient, the proposed method of analysis confirms enamel thickness loss of 80 μm (from 730 ± 165 μm to 650 ± 129 μm) after polishing with paste, enamel thickness loss of 435 μm (from 730 ± 165 μm to 295 ± 55 μm) after etching and bonding resin application, growth of a layer having a thickness of 265 μm (from 295 ± 55 μm to 560 ± 98 μm after etching) which is the adhesive system. After removing an orthodontic bracket, the adhesive residue was 105 μm and after cleaning it off, the enamel thickness was

  4. Many quality measurements, but few quality measures assessing the quality of breast cancer care in women: A systematic review

    PubMed Central

    Schachter, Howard M; Mamaladze, Vasil; Lewin, Gabriela; Graham, Ian D; Brouwers, Melissa; Sampson, Margaret; Morrison, Andra; Zhang, Li; O'Blenis, Peter; Garritty, Chantelle

    2006-01-01

    Background Breast cancer in women is increasingly frequent, and care is complex, onerous and expensive, all of which lend urgency to improvements in care. Quality measurement is essential to monitor effectiveness and to guide improvements in healthcare. Methods Ten databases, including Medline, were searched electronically to identify measures assessing the quality of breast cancer care in women (diagnosis, treatment, followup, documentation of care). Eligible studies measured adherence to standards of breast cancer care in women diagnosed with, or in treatment for, any histological type of adenocarcinoma of the breast. Reference lists of studies, review articles, web sites, and files of experts were searched manually. Evidence appraisal entailed dual independent assessments of data (e.g., indicators used in quality measurement). The extent of each quality indicator's scientific validation as a measure was assessed. The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) was asked to contribute quality measures under development. Results Sixty relevant reports identified 58 studies with 143 indicators assessing adherence to quality breast cancer care. A paucity of validated indicators (n = 12), most of which assessed quality of life, only permitted a qualitative data synthesis. Most quality indicators evaluated processes of care. Conclusion While some studies revealed patterns of under-use of care, all adherence data require confirmation using validated quality measures. ASCO's current development of a set of quality measures relating to breast cancer care may hold the key to conducting definitive studies. PMID:17176480

  5. National Water-Quality Assessment Program: Island of Oahu, Hawaii

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Anthony, Stephen S.

    1998-01-01

    During the past 25 years, our Nation has sought to improve its water quality; however, many water-quality issues remain unresolved. To address the need for consistent and scientifically sound information for managing the Nation's water resources, the U.S. Geological Survey began a full-scale National Water-Quality Assessment (NAWQA) Program in 1991. This program is unique compared with other national water-quality assessment studies in that it integrates the monitoring of the quality of surface and ground waters with the study of aquatic ecosystems. The goals of the NAWQA Program are to (1) describe current water-quality conditions for a large part of the Nation's freshwater streams and aquifers, (2) describe how water quality is changing over time, and (3) improve our understanding of the primary natural and human factors affecting water quality. Assessing the quality of water in every location of the Nation would not be practical; therefore, NAWQA Program studies are conducted within a set of areas called study units. These study units represent the diverse geography, water resources, and land and water uses of the Nation. The island of Oahu, Hawaii, is one such study unit designed to supplement water-quality information collected in other study units across the Nation while addressing issues relevant to the island of Oahu.

  6. Assessment of Severe Apnoea through Voice Analysis, Automatic Speech, and Speaker Recognition Techniques

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fernández Pozo, Rubén; Blanco Murillo, Jose Luis; Hernández Gómez, Luis; López Gonzalo, Eduardo; Alcázar Ramírez, José; Toledano, Doroteo T.

    2009-12-01

    This study is part of an ongoing collaborative effort between the medical and the signal processing communities to promote research on applying standard Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR) techniques for the automatic diagnosis of patients with severe obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA). Early detection of severe apnoea cases is important so that patients can receive early treatment. Effective ASR-based detection could dramatically cut medical testing time. Working with a carefully designed speech database of healthy and apnoea subjects, we describe an acoustic search for distinctive apnoea voice characteristics. We also study abnormal nasalization in OSA patients by modelling vowels in nasal and nonnasal phonetic contexts using Gaussian Mixture Model (GMM) pattern recognition on speech spectra. Finally, we present experimental findings regarding the discriminative power of GMMs applied to severe apnoea detection. We have achieved an 81% correct classification rate, which is very promising and underpins the interest in this line of inquiry.

  7. Assessing the quality of restored images in optical long-baseline interferometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gomes, Nuno; Garcia, Paulo J. V.; Thiébaut, Éric

    2017-03-01

    Assessing the quality of aperture synthesis maps is relevant for benchmarking image reconstruction algorithms, for the scientific exploitation of data from optical long-baseline interferometers, and for the design/upgrade of new/existing interferometric imaging facilities. Although metrics have been proposed in these contexts, no systematic study has been conducted on the selection of a robust metric for quality assessment. This article addresses the question: what is the best metric to assess the quality of a reconstructed image? It starts by considering several metrics and selecting a few based on general properties. Then, a variety of image reconstruction cases are considered. The observational scenarios are phase closure and phase referencing at the Very Large Telescope Interferometer (VLTI), for a combination of two, three, four and six telescopes. End-to-end image reconstruction is accomplished with the MIRA software, and several merit functions are put to test. It is found that convolution by an effective point spread function is required for proper image quality assessment. The effective angular resolution of the images is superior to naive expectation based on the maximum frequency sampled by the array. This is due to the prior information used in the aperture synthesis algorithm and to the nature of the objects considered. The ℓ1-norm is the most robust of all considered metrics, because being linear it is less sensitive to image smoothing by high regularization levels. For the cases considered, this metric allows the implementation of automatic quality assessment of reconstructed images, with a performance similar to human selection.

  8. Method and apparatus for assessing weld quality

    DOEpatents

    Smartt, Herschel B.; Kenney, Kevin L.; Johnson, John A.; Carlson, Nancy M.; Clark, Denis E.; Taylor, Paul L.; Reutzel, Edward W.

    2001-01-01

    Apparatus for determining a quality of a weld produced by a welding device according to the present invention includes a sensor operatively associated with the welding device. The sensor is responsive to at least one welding process parameter during a welding process and produces a welding process parameter signal that relates to the at least one welding process parameter. A computer connected to the sensor is responsive to the welding process parameter signal produced by the sensor. A user interface operatively associated with the computer allows a user to select a desired welding process. The computer processes the welding process parameter signal produced by the sensor in accordance with one of a constant voltage algorithm, a short duration weld algorithm or a pulsed current analysis module depending on the desired welding process selected by the user. The computer produces output data indicative of the quality of the weld.

  9. 42 CFR 460.140 - Additional quality assessment activities.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... SERVICES (CONTINUED) PROGRAMS OF ALL-INCLUSIVE CARE FOR THE ELDERLY (PACE) PROGRAMS OF ALL-INCLUSIVE CARE FOR THE ELDERLY (PACE) Quality Assessment and Performance Improvement § 460.140 Additional...

  10. 42 CFR 460.140 - Additional quality assessment activities.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... SERVICES (CONTINUED) PROGRAMS OF ALL-INCLUSIVE CARE FOR THE ELDERLY (PACE) PROGRAMS OF ALL-INCLUSIVE CARE FOR THE ELDERLY (PACE) Quality Assessment and Performance Improvement § 460.140 Additional...

  11. 42 CFR 460.140 - Additional quality assessment activities.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... SERVICES (CONTINUED) PROGRAMS OF ALL-INCLUSIVE CARE FOR THE ELDERLY (PACE) PROGRAMS OF ALL-INCLUSIVE CARE FOR THE ELDERLY (PACE) Quality Assessment and Performance Improvement § 460.140 Additional...

  12. 42 CFR 460.140 - Additional quality assessment activities.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... SERVICES (CONTINUED) PROGRAMS OF ALL-INCLUSIVE CARE FOR THE ELDERLY (PACE) PROGRAMS OF ALL-INCLUSIVE CARE FOR THE ELDERLY (PACE) Quality Assessment and Performance Improvement § 460.140 Additional...

  13. Assessing Quality across Health Care Subsystems in Mexico

    PubMed Central

    Puig, Andrea; Pagán, José A.; Wong, Rebeca

    2012-01-01

    Recent healthcare reform efforts in Mexico have focused on the need to improve the efficiency and equity of a fragmented healthcare system. In light of these reform initiatives, there is a need to assess whether healthcare subsystems are effective at providing high-quality healthcare to all Mexicans. Nationally representative household survey data from the 2006 Encuesta Nacional de Salud y Nutrición (National Health and Nutrition Survey) were used to assess perceived healthcare quality across different subsystems. Using a sample of 7234 survey respondents, we found evidence of substantial heterogeneity in healthcare quality assessments across healthcare subsystems favoring private providers over social security institutions. These differences across subsystems remained even after adjusting for socioeconomic, demographic, and health factors. Our analysis suggests that improvements in efficiency and equity can be achieved by assessing the factors that contribute to heterogeneity in quality across subsystems. PMID:19305224

  14. PIE Nacelle Flow Analysis and TCA Inlet Flow Quality Assessment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Shieh, C. F.; Arslan, Alan; Sundaran, P.; Kim, Suk; Won, Mark J.

    1999-01-01

    This presentation includes three topics: (1) Analysis of isolated boattail drag; (2) Computation of Technology Concept Airplane (TCA)-installed nacelle effects on aerodynamic performance; and (3) Assessment of TCA inlet flow quality.

  15. Data sources for environmental assessment: determining availability, quality and utility

    EPA Science Inventory

    Objectives: An environmental quality index (EQI) for all counties in the United States is being developed to explore the relationship between environmental insults and human health. The EQI will be particularly useful to assess how environmental disamenities contribute to health...

  16. Workforce Quality and Federal Procurement: An Assessment

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1992-07-01

    changes tion community have raised concerns about a in personiel policies to improve the possible decline in the quality of the Federal Government’s ability...ratings, both employees and supervi- there is substantial room for improvement as sors believed that virtually the same percentage of indicated by the...52 32 Analytical Ability 47 45 48 37 Oral Communications 47 46 52 37 Writing Ability 46 46 51 33 Ability to Innovate 54 32 53 22 Ability to Initiate

  17. Using big data for quality assessment in oncology.

    PubMed

    Broughman, James R; Chen, Ronald C

    2016-05-01

    There is increasing attention in the US healthcare system on the delivery of high-quality care, an issue central to oncology. In the report 'Crossing the Quality Chasm', the Institute of Medicine identified six aims for improving healthcare quality: safe, effective, patient-centered, timely, efficient and equitable. This article describes how current big data resources can be used to assess these six dimensions, and provides examples of published studies in oncology. Strengths and limitations of current big data resources for the evaluation of quality of care are also discussed. Finally, this article outlines a vision where big data can be used not only to retrospectively assess the quality of oncologic care, but help physicians deliver high-quality care in real time.

  18. Automatic Generation of High Quality DSM Based on IRS-P5 Cartosat-1 Stereo Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    d'Angelo, Pablo; Uttenthaler, Andreas; Carl, Sebastian; Barner, Frithjof; Reinartz, Peter

    2010-12-01

    IRS-P5 Cartosat-1 high resolution stereo satellite imagery is well suited for the creation of digital surface models (DSM). A system for highly automated and operational DSM and orthoimage generation based on IRS-P5 Cartosat-1 imagery is presented, with an emphasis on automated processing and product quality. The proposed system processes IRS-P5 level-1 stereo scenes using the rational polynomial coefficients (RPC) universal sensor model. The described method uses an RPC correction based on DSM alignment instead of using reference images with a lower lateral accuracy, this results in improved geolocation of the DSMs and orthoimages. Following RPC correction, highly detailed DSMs with 5 m grid spacing are derived using Semiglobal Matching. The proposed method is part of an operational Cartosat-1 processor for the generation of a high resolution DSM. Evaluation of 18 scenes against independent ground truth measurements indicates a mean lateral error (CE90) of 6.7 meters and a mean vertical accuracy (LE90) of 5.1 meters.

  19. Water Quality Assessment Dale Hollow Lake and Its Inflows,

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1986-03-01

    NATIONAL BUREAU Of STANDARDS-1963-A I B US Army Corps of Engineers Nashville District Water Quality Assessment Dale Hollow Lake and Its Inflows March...PERIOD COVERED Water Quality Assessment Final Report Dale Hollow Lake and Its Inflows 6. PERFORMING ORO. REPORT NUMBER 7. AUTHOR(a) 6. CONTRACT OR... Water Resources Center, Tennessee Tech. Univ. Box 5082 Cookeville, TN 38505 11. CONTROLLING OFFICE NAME AND ADDRESS 12. REPORT DATE U.S. Army Engineer

  20. Technical assessment for quality control of resins

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gosnell, R. B.

    1977-01-01

    Survey visits to companies involved in the manufacture and use of graphite-epoxy prepregs were conducted to assess the factors which may contribute to variability in the mechanical properties of graphite-epoxy composites. In particular, the purpose was to assess the contributions of the epoxy resins to variability. Companies represented three segments of the composites industry - aircraft manufacturers, prepreg manufacturers, and epoxy resin manufacturers. Several important sources of performance variability were identified from among the complete spectrum of potential sources which ranged from raw materials to composite test data interpretation.

  1. Guidance on Data Quality Assessment for Life Cycle Inventory Data

    EPA Science Inventory

    Data quality within Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) is a significant issue for the future support and development of LCA as a decision support tool and its wider adoption within industry. In response to current data quality standards such as the ISO 14000 series, various entities wit...

  2. River Pollution: Part II. Biological Methods for Assessing Water Quality.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Openshaw, Peter

    1984-01-01

    Discusses methods used in the biological assessment of river quality and such indicators of clean and polluted waters as the Trent Biotic Index, Chandler Score System, and species diversity indexes. Includes a summary of a river classification scheme based on quality criteria related to water use. (JN)

  3. Assessment of density in enriched colony cages: Egg quality

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Enriched colony cage production systems are becoming more prevalent in the US. A study was undertaken to determine the impact of housing density on hen health, well-being, egg production and quality. Six densities were examined with 8 housing replicates per density. Egg quality was assessed at hen a...

  4. Positions, Power and Practice: Functionalist Approaches and Translation Quality Assessment.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Honig, Hans G.

    1997-01-01

    Examines theoretical foundations and practical application of Translation Quality Assessment (TQA), particularly in translator training. Several approaches to translation are considered, especially the "functional" and "relevance" approaches. The need for TQA, several popular views on translation quality, and the issue of…

  5. Assessing Educational Processes Using Total-Quality-Management Measurement Tools.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Macchia, Peter, Jr.

    1993-01-01

    Discussion of the use of Total Quality Management (TQM) assessment tools in educational settings highlights and gives examples of fishbone diagrams, or cause and effect charts; Pareto diagrams; control charts; histograms and check sheets; scatter diagrams; and flowcharts. Variation and quality are discussed in terms of continuous process…

  6. Developing Quality Physical Education through Student Assessments

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fisette, Jennifer L.; Placek, Judith H.; Avery, Marybell; Dyson, Ben; Fox, Connie; Franck, Marian; Graber, Kim; Rink, Judith; Zhu, Weimo

    2009-01-01

    The National Association of Sport and Physical Education (NASPE) is committed to providing teachers with the support and guiding principles for implementing valid assessments. Its goal is for physical educators to utilize PE Metrics to measure student learning based on the national standards. The first PE Metrics text provides teachers with…

  7. American History Textbooks: An Assessment of Quality.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sewall, Gilbert T.

    United States history as a linchpin in the school curriculum and as a potentially exciting, sometimes electrifying, subject was the conviction underlying this analysis of U.S. history textbooks. This assessment investigates the capacity of leading U.S. social studies and history textbooks to inspire the imagination of students through effective…

  8. Questioning the Technical Quality of Performance Assessment.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Baker, Eva L.

    1993-01-01

    Ongoing research finds that alternatives to formal tests carry hidden costs and require trade-offs. National Center for Research on Evaluation, Standards, and Student Testing (CRESST) is studying how performance assessments work so that they may be designed to help students reach their highest potential. This article raises priority questions,…

  9. Quality assessment of plant transpiration water

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Macler, Bruce A.; Janik, Daniel S.; Benson, Brian L.

    1990-01-01

    It has been proposed to use plants as elements of biologically-based life support systems for long-term space missions. Three roles have been brought forth for plants in this application: recycling of water, regeneration of air and production of food. This report discusses recycling of water and presents data from investigations of plant transpiration water quality. Aqueous nutrient solution was applied to several plant species and transpired water collected. The findings indicated that this water typically contained 0.3-6 ppm of total organic carbon, which meets hygiene water standards for NASA's space applications. It suggests that this method could be developed to achieve potable water standards.

  10. Electric Power quality Analysis in research reactor: Impacts on nuclear safety assessment and electrical distribution reliability

    SciTech Connect

    Touati, Said; Chennai, Salim; Souli, Aissa

    2015-07-01

    The increased requirements on supervision, control, and performance in modern power systems make power quality monitoring a common practise for utilities. Large databases are created and automatic processing of the data is required for fast and effective use of the available information. Aim of the work presented in this paper is the development of tools for analysis of monitoring power quality data and in particular measurements of voltage and currents in various level of electrical power distribution. The study is extended to evaluate the reliability of the electrical system in nuclear plant. Power Quality is a measure of how well a system supports reliable operation of its loads. A power disturbance or event can involve voltage, current, or frequency. Power disturbances can originate in consumer power systems, consumer loads, or the utility. The effect of power quality problems is the loss power supply leading to severe damage to equipments. So, we try to track and improve system reliability. The assessment can be focused on the study of impact of short circuits on the system, harmonics distortion, power factor improvement and effects of transient disturbances on the Electrical System during motor starting and power system fault conditions. We focus also on the review of the Electrical System design against the Nuclear Directorate Safety Assessment principles, including those extended during the last Fukushima nuclear accident. The simplified configuration of the required system can be extended from this simple scheme. To achieve these studies, we have used a demo ETAP power station software for several simulations. (authors)

  11. Multi-frame super-resolution with quality self-assessment for retinal fundus videos.

    PubMed

    Köhler, Thomas; Brost, Alexander; Mogalle, Katja; Zhang, Qianyi; Köhler, Christiane; Michelson, Georg; Hornegger, Joachim; Tornow, Ralf P

    2014-01-01

    This paper proposes a novel super-resolution framework to reconstruct high-resolution fundus images from multiple low-resolution video frames in retinal fundus imaging. Natural eye movements during an examination are used as a cue for super-resolution in a robust maximum a-posteriori scheme. In order to compensate heterogeneous illumination on the fundus, we integrate retrospective illumination correction for photometric registration to the underlying imaging model. Our method utilizes quality self-assessment to provide objective quality scores for reconstructed images as well as to select regularization parameters automatically. In our evaluation on real data acquired from six human subjects with a low-cost video camera, the proposed method achieved considerable enhancements of low-resolution frames and improved noise and sharpness characteristics by 74%. In terms of image analysis, we demonstrate the importance of our method for the improvement of automatic blood vessel segmentation as an example application, where the sensitivity was increased by 13% using super-resolution reconstruction.

  12. Blind image quality assessment using a general regression neural network.

    PubMed

    Li, Chaofeng; Bovik, Alan Conrad; Wu, Xiaojun

    2011-05-01

    We develop a no-reference image quality assessment (QA) algorithm that deploys a general regression neural network (GRNN). The new algorithm is trained on and successfully assesses image quality, relative to human subjectivity, across a range of distortion types. The features deployed for QA include the mean value of phase congruency image, the entropy of phase congruency image, the entropy of the distorted image, and the gradient of the distorted image. Image quality estimation is accomplished by approximating the functional relationship between these features and subjective mean opinion scores using a GRNN. Our experimental results show that the new method accords closely with human subjective judgment.

  13. School Indoor Air Quality Assessment and Program Implementation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Prill, R.; Blake, D.; Hales, D.

    This paper describes the effectiveness of a three-step indoor air quality (IAQ) program implemented by 156 schools in the states of Washington and Idaho during the 2000-2001 school year. An experienced IAQ/building science specialist conducted walk-through assessments at each school. These assessments documented deficiencies and served as an…

  14. Quality Assessment of Special Education Programmes: Listen to the Parents

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    International Journal of Special Education, 2016

    2016-01-01

    Special education programmes must include high quality services to enhance children with disabilities (CWD) in all aspects of their development. This study aims to assess special education programmes (SEP) in Jordan from the perspectives of parents of CWD. Two different SEPs were assessed: inclusive education (IE) in regular schools, and special…

  15. Software Component Quality Assessment in Practice: Successes and Practical Impediments

    SciTech Connect

    Gorton, Ian ); Liu, Anna

    2002-05-19

    This paper describes the author?s experiences of initiating and sustaining a project aimed at accelerating the successful adoption of COTS middleware technologies in large business and scientific information systems. The projects aims are described, along with example outcomes and an assessment of what is needed for wide-scale software component quality assessments to succeed.

  16. Evaluating and Enhancing Outcomes Assessment Quality in Higher Education Programs

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wolf, Kenneth; Goodwin, Laura

    2007-01-01

    Accreditation is a mark of distinction indicating that an institution has met high standards set by the profession, and an increasingly important feature of the accreditation process in higher education is "outcomes assessment." This article presents two rubrics for evaluating the quality of an institution's outcomes assessment system. One rubric…

  17. Floristic Quality Assessment Across the Nation: Status, Opportunities, and Challenges

    EPA Science Inventory

    Floristic Quality Assessment (FQA) will be considered in the USEPA National Wetland Condition Assessment (NWCA). FQA is a powerful tool to describe wetland ecological condition, and is based on Coefficients of Conservatism (CC) of individual native plant species. CCs rank sensiti...

  18. Assessment of Consumers' Satisfaction with the Automotive Product Quality

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Amineh, Hadi; Kosach, Nataliya

    2016-01-01

    Relevance of article is caused by the fact that customer's satisfaction currently serves as the mechanism allowing the carmakers to be competitive in the market. The paper describes issues of assessment of the quality of products manufactured by automobile companies. The assessment is based on widely applicable complex characteristics of the…

  19. Ultrasonic assessment of oil quality during frying.

    PubMed

    Benedito, Jose; Mulet, Antonio; Velasco, J; Dobarganes, M Carmen

    2002-07-31

    In this paper, changes in ultrasonic properties during thermoxidation of virgin olive oil were studied. Samples of virgin olive oil were heated over different periods of time from 2 to 16 h at 200 degrees C. Oil degradation was characterized by means of physical and chemical changes, i.e., viscosity, color, polar compounds, polymers, and polar fatty acids. Ultrasonic measurements were carried out while the oil sample was cooled from 35 to 25 degrees C. It was found that velocity and attenuation measurements were related to viscosity measurements through a classical equation for viscous liquids. The ultrasonic measurements were also related to the percentages of polar compounds and polymers, which shows the feasibility of using ultrasonic properties to monitor oil quality. Nevertheless, as long as the ultrasonic measurements are temperature dependent, this variable must be controlled in order to obtain repetitive and reliable measurements.

  20. No-reference visual quality assessment for image inpainting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Voronin, V. V.; Frantc, V. A.; Marchuk, V. I.; Sherstobitov, A. I.; Egiazarian, K.

    2015-03-01

    Inpainting has received a lot of attention in recent years and quality assessment is an important task to evaluate different image reconstruction approaches. In many cases inpainting methods introduce a blur in sharp transitions in image and image contours in the recovery of large areas with missing pixels and often fail to recover curvy boundary edges. Quantitative metrics of inpainting results currently do not exist and researchers use human comparisons to evaluate their methodologies and techniques. Most objective quality assessment methods rely on a reference image, which is often not available in inpainting applications. Usually researchers use subjective quality assessment by human observers. It is difficult and time consuming procedure. This paper focuses on a machine learning approach for no-reference visual quality assessment for image inpainting based on the human visual property. Our method is based on observation that Local Binary Patterns well describe local structural information of the image. We use a support vector regression learned on assessed by human images to predict perceived quality of inpainted images. We demonstrate how our predicted quality value correlates with qualitative opinion in a human observer study. Results are shown on a human-scored dataset for different inpainting methods.

  1. AVLIS Production Plant Preliminary Quality Assurance Plan and Assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1984-11-15

    This preliminary Quality Assurance Plan and Assessment establishes the Quality Assurance requirements for the AVLIS Production Plant Project. The Quality Assurance Plan defines the management approach, organization, interfaces, and controls that will be used in order to provide adequate confidence that the AVLIS Production Plant design, procurement, construction, fabrication, installation, start-up, and operation are accomplished within established goals and objectives. The Quality Assurance Program defined in this document includes a system for assessing those elements of the project whose failure would have a significant impact on safety, environment, schedule, cost, or overall plant objectives. As elements of the project are assessed, classifications are provided to establish and assure that special actions are defined which will eliminate or reduce the probability of occurrence or control the consequences of failure. 8 figures, 18 tables.

  2. Poster — Thur Eve — 70: Automatic lung bronchial and vessel bifurcations detection algorithm for deformable image registration assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Labine, Alexandre; Carrier, Jean-François; Bedwani, Stéphane; Chav, Ramnada; De Guise, Jacques

    2014-08-15

    Purpose: To investigate an automatic bronchial and vessel bifurcations detection algorithm for deformable image registration (DIR) assessment to improve lung cancer radiation treatment. Methods: 4DCT datasets were acquired and exported to Varian treatment planning system (TPS) EclipseTM for contouring. The lungs TPS contour was used as the prior shape for a segmentation algorithm based on hierarchical surface deformation that identifies the deformed lungs volumes of the 10 breathing phases. Hounsfield unit (HU) threshold filter was applied within the segmented lung volumes to identify blood vessels and airways. Segmented blood vessels and airways were skeletonised using a hierarchical curve-skeleton algorithm based on a generalized potential field approach. A graph representation of the computed skeleton was generated to assign one of three labels to each node: the termination node, the continuation node or the branching node. Results: 320 ± 51 bifurcations were detected in the right lung of a patient for the 10 breathing phases. The bifurcations were visually analyzed. 92 ± 10 bifurcations were found in the upper half of the lung and 228 ± 45 bifurcations were found in the lower half of the lung. Discrepancies between ten vessel trees were mainly ascribed to large deformation and in regions where the HU varies. Conclusions: We established an automatic method for DIR assessment using the morphological information of the patient anatomy. This approach allows a description of the lung's internal structure movement, which is needed to validate the DIR deformation fields for accurate 4D cancer treatment planning.

  3. Assessing and communicating data quality in policy-relevant research

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Costanza, Robert; Funtowicz, Silvio O.; Ravetz, Jerome R.

    1992-01-01

    The quality of scientific information in policy-relevant fields of research is difficult to assess, and quality control in these important areas is correspondingly difficult to maintain. Frequently there are insufficient high-quality measurements for the presentation of the statistical uncertainty in the numerical estimates that are crucial to policy decisions. We propose and develop a grading system for numerical estimates that can deal with the full range of data quality—from statistically valid estimates to informed guesses. By analyzing the underlying quality of numerical estimates, summarized as spread and grade, we are able to provide simple rules whereby input data can be coded for quality, and these codings carried through arithmetical calculations for assessing the quality of model results. For this we use the NUSAP (numeral, unit, spread, assessment, pedigree) notational system. It allows the more quantitative and the more qualitative aspects of data uncertainty to be managed separately. By way of example, we apply the system to an ecosystem valuation study that used several different models and data of widely varying quality to arrive at a single estimate of the economic value of wetlands. The NUSAP approach illustrates the major sources of uncertainty in this study and can guide new research aimed at the improvement of the quality of outputs and the efficiency of the procedures.

  4. Southwest principal aquifers regional ground-water quality assessment

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Anning, D.W.; Thiros, S.A.; Bexfield, L.M.; McKinney, T.S.; Green, J.M.

    2009-01-01

    The National Water-Quality Assessment (NAWQA) Program of the U.S. Geological Survey is conducting a regional analysis of water quality in the principal aquifers in the southwestern United States. The Southwest Principal Aquifers (SWPA) study is building a better understanding of the susceptibility and vulnerability of basin-fill aquifers in the region to ground-water contamination by synthesizing the baseline knowledge of ground-water quality conditions in 15 basins previously studied by the NAWQA Program. The improved understanding of aquifer susceptibility and vulnerability to contamination is assisting in the development of tools that water managers can use to assess and protect the quality of ground-water resources. This fact sheet provides an overview of the basin-fill aquifers in the southwestern United States and description of the completed and planned regional analyses of ground-water quality being performed by the SWPA study.

  5. Assessing urban habitat quality using spectral characteristics of Tilia leaves.

    PubMed

    Khavanin Zadeh, A R; Veroustraete, F; Buytaert, J A N; Dirckx, J; Samson, R

    2013-07-01

    Monitoring environmental quality in urban areas is an important issue offering possibilities to control and improve urban habitat quality as well as to avoid adverse effects on human health. A tree leaf reflectance-based bio-monitoring method was used to assess the urban habitat quality of two contrasting habitat classes in the city of Gent (Belgium). As test trees, two Tilia species were selected. Custom made Matlab code is applied to process the measurements of leaf reflectance. This enables the discrimination between polluted and less polluted habitats. The results elicit, that leaf reflectance in the PAR range, as well as the NDAI (Normalised Difference Asymmetry index) are species dependent while Dorsiventral Leaf Reflectance Correlation (DLRC) seems to be independent of species. Therefore the assessment of urban habitat quality is perfectly feasible using leaf reflectance, when taking account of the species specificity of tree leaf physiological and structural responses to habitat quality.

  6. Automatic Blocked Roads Assessment after Earthquake Using High Resolution Satellite Imagery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rastiveis, H.; Hosseini-Zirdoo, E.; Eslamizade, F.

    2015-12-01

    In 2010, an earthquake in the city of Port-au-Prince, Haiti, happened quite by chance an accident and killed over 300000 people. According to historical data such an earthquake has not occurred in the area. Unpredictability of earthquakes has necessitated the need for comprehensive mitigation efforts to minimize deaths and injuries. Blocked roads, caused by debris of destroyed buildings, may increase the difficulty of rescue activities. In this case, a damage map, which specifies blocked and unblocked roads, can be definitely helpful for a rescue team. In this paper, a novel method for providing destruction map based on pre-event vector map and high resolution world view II satellite images after earthquake, is presented. For this purpose, firstly in pre-processing step, image quality improvement and co-coordination of image and map are performed. Then, after extraction of texture descriptor from the image after quake and SVM classification, different terrains are detected in the image. Finally, considering the classification results, specifically objects belong to "debris" class, damage analysis are performed to estimate the damage percentage. In this case, in addition to the area objects in the "debris" class their shape should also be counted. The aforementioned process are performed on all the roads in the road layer.In this research, pre-event digital vector map and post-event high resolution satellite image, acquired by Worldview-2, of the city of Port-au-Prince, Haiti's capital, were used to evaluate the proposed method. The algorithm was executed on 1200×800 m2 of the data set, including 60 roads, and all the roads were labelled correctly. The visual examination have authenticated the abilities of this method for damage assessment of urban roads network after an earthquake.

  7. Advanced imaging assessment of bone quality.

    PubMed

    Genant, Harry K; Jiang, Yebin

    2006-04-01

    Noninvasive and/or nondestructive techniques can provide structural information about bone, beyond simple bone densitometry. While the latter provides important information about osteoporotic fracture risk, many studies indicate that bone mineral density (BMD) only partly explains bone strength. Quantitative assessment of macrostructural characteristics, such as geometry, and microstructural features, such as relative trabecular volume, trabecular spacing, and connectivity, may improve our ability to estimate bone strength. Methods for quantitatively assessing macrostructure include (besides conventional radiographs) dual X ray absorptiometry (DXA) and computed tomography (CT), particularly volumetric quantitative computed tomography (vQCT). Methods for assessing microstructure of trabecular bone noninvasively and/or nondestructively include high-resolution computed tomography (hrCT), microcomputed tomography (micro-CT), high-resolution magnetic resonance (hrMR), and micromagnetic resonance (micro-MR). vQCT, hrCT, and hrMR are generally applicable in vivo; micro-CT and micro-MR are principally applicable in vitro. Despite progress, problems remain. The important balances between spatial resolution and sampling size, or between signal-to-noise and radiation dose or acquisition time, need further consideration, as do the complexity and expense of the methods versus their availability and accessibility. Clinically, the challenges for bone imaging include balancing the advantages of simple bone densitometry versus the more complex architectural features of bone, or the deeper research requirements versus the broader clinical needs. The biological differences between the peripheral appendicular skeleton and the central axial skeleton must be further addressed. Finally, the relative merits of these sophisticated imaging techniques must be weighed with respect to their applications as diagnostic procedures, requiring high accuracy or reliability, versus their monitoring

  8. Assessment of ambient air quality in Eskişehir, Turkey.

    PubMed

    Ozden, O; Döğeroğlu, T; Kara, S

    2008-07-01

    This paper presents an assessment of air quality of the city Eskişehir, located 230 km southwest to the capital of Turkey. Only five of the major air pollutants, most studied worldwide and available for the region, were considered for the assessment. Available sulphur dioxide (SO(2)), particulate matter (PM), nitrogen dioxide (NO(2)), ozone (O(3)), and non-methane volatile organic carbons (NMVOCs) data from local emission inventory studies provided relative source contributions of the selected pollutants to the region. The contributions of these typical pollution parameters, selected for characterizing such an urban atmosphere, were compared with the data established for other cities in the nation and world countries. Additionally, regional ambient SO(2) and PM concentrations, determined by semi-automatic monitoring at two sites, were gathered from the National Ambient Air Monitoring Network (NAAMN). Regional data for ambient NO(2) (as a precursor of ozone as VOCs) and ozone concentrations, through the application of the passive sampling method, were provided by the still ongoing local air quality monitoring studies conducted at six different sites, as representatives of either the traffic-dense-, or coal/natural gas burning residential-, or industrial/rural-localities of the city. Passively sampled ozone data at a single rural site were also verified with the data from a continuous automatic ozone monitoring system located at that site. Effects of variations in seasonal-activities, newly established railway system, and switching to natural gas usage on the temporal changes of air quality were all considered for the assessment. Based on the comparisons with the national [AQCR (Air Quality Control Regulation). Ministry of Environment (MOE), Ankara. Official Newspaper 19269; 1986.] and a number of international [WHO (World Health Organization). Guidelines for Air Quality. Geneva; 2000. Downloaded in January 2006, website: http://www.who.int/peh/; EU (European Union

  9. Cloud-Based Smart Health Monitoring System for Automatic Cardiovascular and Fall Risk Assessment in Hypertensive Patients.

    PubMed

    Melillo, P; Orrico, A; Scala, P; Crispino, F; Pecchia, L

    2015-10-01

    The aim of this paper is to describe the design and the preliminary validation of a platform developed to collect and automatically analyze biomedical signals for risk assessment of vascular events and falls in hypertensive patients. This m-health platform, based on cloud computing, was designed to be flexible, extensible, and transparent, and to provide proactive remote monitoring via data-mining functionalities. A retrospective study was conducted to train and test the platform. The developed system was able to predict a future vascular event within the next 12 months with an accuracy rate of 84 % and to identify fallers with an accuracy rate of 72 %. In an ongoing prospective trial, almost all the recruited patients accepted favorably the system with a limited rate of inadherences causing data losses (<20 %). The developed platform supported clinical decision by processing tele-monitored data and providing quick and accurate risk assessment of vascular events and falls.

  10. Assessment of mesh simplification algorithm quality

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roy, Michael; Nicolier, Frederic; Foufou, S.; Truchetet, Frederic; Koschan, Andreas; Abidi, Mongi A.

    2002-03-01

    Traditionally, medical geneticists have employed visual inspection (anthroposcopy) to clinically evaluate dysmorphology. In the last 20 years, there has been an increasing trend towards quantitative assessment to render diagnosis of anomalies more objective and reliable. These methods have focused on direct anthropometry, using a combination of classical physical anthropology tools and new instruments tailor-made to describe craniofacial morphometry. These methods are painstaking and require that the patient remain still for extended periods of time. Most recently, semiautomated techniques (e.g., structured light scanning) have been developed to capture the geometry of the face in a matter of seconds. In this paper, we establish that direct anthropometry and structured light scanning yield reliable measurements, with remarkably high levels of inter-rater and intra-rater reliability, as well as validity (contrasting the two methods).

  11. No Reference Video-Quality-Assessment Model for Monitoring Video Quality of IPTV Services

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yamagishi, Kazuhisa; Okamoto, Jun; Hayashi, Takanori; Takahashi, Akira

    Service providers should monitor the quality of experience of a communication service in real time to confirm its status. To do this, we previously proposed a packet-layer model that can be used for monitoring the average video quality of typical Internet protocol television content using parameters derived from transmitted packet headers. However, it is difficult to monitor the video quality per user using the average video quality because video quality depends on the video content. To accurately monitor the video quality per user, a model that can be used for estimating the video quality per video content rather than the average video quality should be developed. Therefore, to take into account the impact of video content on video quality, we propose a model that calculates the difference in video quality between the video quality of the estimation-target video and the average video quality estimated using a packet-layer model. We first conducted extensive subjective quality assessments for different codecs and video sequences. We then model their characteristics based on parameters related to compression and packet loss. Finally, we verify the performance of the proposed model by applying it to unknown data sets different from the training data sets used for developing the model.

  12. Service Quality Assessment Scale (SQAS): An Instrument for Evaluating Service Quality of Health-Fitness Clubs

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lam, Eddie T. C.; Zhang, James J.; Jensen, Barbara E.

    2005-01-01

    This study was designed to develop the Service Quality Assessment Scale to evaluate the service quality of health-fitness clubs. Through a review of literature, field observations, interviews, modified application of the Delphi technique, and a pilot study, a preliminary scale with 46 items was formulated. The preliminary scale was administered to…

  13. Learning Receptive Fields and Quality Lookups for Blind Quality Assessment of Stereoscopic Images.

    PubMed

    Shao, Feng; Lin, Weisi; Wang, Shanshan; Jiang, Gangyi; Yu, Mei; Dai, Qionghai

    2016-03-01

    Blind quality assessment of 3D images encounters more new challenges than its 2D counterparts. In this paper, we propose a blind quality assessment for stereoscopic images by learning the characteristics of receptive fields (RFs) from perspective of dictionary learning, and constructing quality lookups to replace human opinion scores without performance loss. The important feature of the proposed method is that we do not need a large set of samples of distorted stereoscopic images and the corresponding human opinion scores to learn a regression model. To be more specific, in the training phase, we learn local RFs (LRFs) and global RFs (GRFs) from the reference and distorted stereoscopic images, respectively, and construct their corresponding local quality lookups (LQLs) and global quality lookups (GQLs). In the testing phase, blind quality pooling can be easily achieved by searching optimal GRF and LRF indexes from the learnt LQLs and GQLs, and the quality score is obtained by combining the LRF and GRF indexes together. Experimental results on three publicly 3D image quality assessment databases demonstrate that in comparison with the existing methods, the devised algorithm achieves high consistent alignment with subjective assessment.

  14. Constructing Assessment Model of Primary and Secondary Educational Quality with Talent Quality as the Core Standard

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chen, Benyou

    2014-01-01

    Quality is the core of education and it is important to standardization construction of primary and secondary education in urban (U) and rural (R) areas. The ultimate goal of the integration of urban and rural education is to pursuit quality urban and rural education. Based on analysing the related policy basis and the existing assessment models…

  15. Methods for assessing the quality of runoff from Minnesota peatlands

    SciTech Connect

    Clausen, J.C.

    1981-01-01

    The quality of runoff from large, undisturbed peatlands in Minnesota is chaaracterized and sampling results from a number of bogs (referred to as a multiple watershed approach) was used to assess the effects of peat mining on the quality of bog runoff. Runoff from 45 natural peatlands and one mined bog was sampled five times in 1979-80 and analyzed for 34 water quality characteristics. Peatland watersheds were classified as bog, transition, or fen, based upon both water quality and watershed characteristics. Alternative classification methods were based on frequency distributions, cluster analysis, discriminant analysis, and principal component analysis results. A multiple watershed approach was used as a basis of drawing inferences regarding the quality of runoff from a representative sample of natural bogs and a mined bog. The multiple watershed technique applied provides an alternative to long-term paired watershed experiments in evaluating the effects of land use activities on the quality of runoff from peatlands in Minnesota.

  16. Objective Quality Assessment and Perceptual Compression of Screen Content Images.

    PubMed

    Wang, Shiqi; Gu, Ke; Zeng, Kai; Wang, Zhou; Lin, Weisi

    2016-05-25

    Screen content image (SCI) has recently emerged as an active topic due to the rapidly increasing demand in many graphically rich services such as wireless displays and virtual desktops. Image quality models play an important role in measuring and optimizing user experience of SCI compression and transmission systems, but are currently lacking. SCIs are often composed of pictorial regions and computer generated textual/graphical content, which exhibit different statistical properties that often lead to different viewer behaviors. Inspired by this, we propose an objective quality assessment approach for SCIs that incorporates both visual field adaptation and information content weighting into structural similarity based local quality assessment. Furthermore, we develop a perceptual screen content coding scheme based on the newly proposed quality assessment measure, targeting at further improving the SCI compression performance. Experimental results show that the proposed quality assessment method not only better predicts the perceptual quality of SCIs, but also demonstrates great potentials in the design of perceptually optimal SCI compression schemes.

  17. Germination tests for assessing biochar quality.

    PubMed

    Rogovska, N; Laird, D; Cruse, R M; Trabue, S; Heaton, E

    2012-01-01

    Definition, analysis, and certification of biochar quality are crucial to the agronomic acceptance of biochar. While most biochars have a positive impact on plant growth, some may have adverse effects due to the presence of phytotoxic compounds. Conversely, some biochars may have the ability to adsorb and neutralize natural phytotoxic compounds found in soil. We evaluated the effects of biochars on seedling growth and absorption of allelochemicals present in corn ( L.) residues. Corn seeds were germinated in aqueous extracts of six biochars produced from varied feedstocks, thermochemical processes, and temperatures. Percent germination and shoot and radicle lengths were evaluated at the end of the germination period. Extracts from the six biochars had no effect on percent germination; however, extracts from three biochars produced at high conversion temperatures significantly inhibited shoot growth by an average of 16% relative to deionized (DI) water. Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons detected in the aqueous extracts are believed to be at least partly responsible for the reduction in seedling growth. Repeated leaching of biochars before extract preparation eliminated the negative effects on seedling growth. Biochars differ significantly in their capacity to adsorb allelochemicals present in corn residues. Germination of corn seeds in extracts of corn residue showed 94% suppression of radicle growth compared to those exposed to DI water; however, incubation of corn residue extracts with leached biochar for 24 h before initiating the germination test increased radicle length 6 to 12 times compared to the corn residue extract treatments. Germination tests appear to be a reliable procedure to differentiate between effects of different types of biochar on corn seedling growth.

  18. Assessing the quality of a student-generated question repository

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bates, Simon P.; Galloway, Ross K.; Riise, Jonathan; Homer, Danny

    2014-12-01

    We present results from a study that categorizes and assesses the quality of questions and explanations authored by students in question repositories produced as part of the summative assessment in introductory physics courses over two academic sessions. Mapping question quality onto the levels in the cognitive domain of Bloom's taxonomy, we find that students produce questions of high quality. More than three-quarters of questions fall into categories beyond simple recall, in contrast to similar studies of student-authored content in different subject domains. Similarly, the quality of student-authored explanations for questions was also high, with approximately 60% of all explanations classified as being of high or outstanding quality. Overall, 75% of questions met combined quality criteria, which we hypothesize is due in part to the in-class scaffolding activities that we provided for students ahead of requiring them to author questions. This work presents the first systematic investigation into the quality of student produced assessment material in an introductory physics context, and thus complements and extends related studies in other disciplines.

  19. Analysis of results obtained using the automatic chemical control of the quality of the water heat carrier in the drum boiler of the Ivanovo CHP-3 power plant

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Larin, A. B.; Kolegov, A. V.

    2012-10-01

    Results of industrial tests of the new method used for the automatic chemical control of the quality of boiler water of the drum-type power boiler ( P d = 13.8 MPa) are described. The possibility of using an H-cationite column for measuring the electric conductivity of an H-cationized sample of boiler water over a long period of time is shown.

  20. Development of a 3D optical scanning-based automatic quality assurance system for proton range compensators

    SciTech Connect

    Kim, MinKyu; Ju, Sang Gyu E-mail: doho.choi@samsung.com; Chung, Kwangzoo; Hong, Chae-Seon; Kim, Jinsung; Ahn, Sung Hwan; Jung, Sang Hoon; Han, Youngyih; Chung, Yoonsun; Cho, Sungkoo; Choi, Doo Ho E-mail: doho.choi@samsung.com; Kim, Jungkuk; Shin, Dongho

    2015-02-15

    Purpose: A new automatic quality assurance (AutoRCQA) system using a three-dimensional scanner (3DS) with system automation was developed to improve the accuracy and efficiency of the quality assurance (QA) procedure for proton range compensators (RCs). The system performance was evaluated for clinical implementation. Methods: The AutoRCQA system consists of a three-dimensional measurement system (3DMS) based on 3DS and in-house developed verification software (3DVS). To verify the geometrical accuracy, the planned RC data (PRC), calculated with the treatment planning system (TPS), were reconstructed and coregistered with the measured RC data (MRC) based on the beam isocenter. The PRC and MRC inner surfaces were compared with composite analysis (CA) using 3DVS, using the CA pass rate for quantitative analysis. To evaluate the detection accuracy of the system, the authors designed a fake PRC by artificially adding small cubic islands with side lengths of 1.5, 2.5, and 3.5 mm on the inner surface of the PRC and performed CA with the depth difference and distance-to-agreement tolerances of [1 mm, 1 mm], [2 mm, 2 mm], and [3 mm, 3 mm]. In addition, the authors performed clinical tests using seven RCs [computerized milling machine (CMM)-RCs] manufactured by CMM, which were designed for treating various disease sites. The systematic offsets of the seven CMM-RCs were evaluated through the automatic registration function of AutoRCQA. For comparison with conventional technique, the authors measured the thickness at three points in each of the seven CMM-RCs using a manual depth measurement device and calculated thickness difference based on the TPS data (TPS-manual measurement). These results were compared with data obtained from 3DVS. The geometrical accuracy of each CMM-RC inner surface was investigated using the TPS data by performing CA with the same criteria. The authors also measured the net processing time, including the scan and analysis time. Results: The Auto

  1. Quality, management, and the interplay of self-assessment, process assessments, and performance-based observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Willett, D. J.

    1993-04-01

    In this document, the author presents his observations on the topic of quality assurance (QA). Traditionally the focus of quality management has been on QA organizations, manuals, procedures, audits, and assessments; quality was measured by the degree of conformance to specifications or standards. Today quality is defined as satisfying user needs and is measured by user satisfaction. The author proposes that quality is the responsibility of line organizations and staff and not the responsibility of the QA group. This work outlines an effective Conduct of Operations program. The author concludes his observations with a discussion of how quality is analogous to leadership.

  2. The Automatic Assessment of Free Text Answers Using a Modified BLEU Algorithm

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Noorbehbahani, F.; Kardan, A. A.

    2011-01-01

    e-Learning plays an undoubtedly important role in today's education and assessment is one of the most essential parts of any instruction-based learning process. Assessment is a common way to evaluate a student's knowledge regarding the concepts related to learning objectives. In this paper, a new method for assessing the free text answers of…

  3. Human Variome Project Quality Assessment Criteria for Variation Databases.

    PubMed

    Vihinen, Mauno; Hancock, John M; Maglott, Donna R; Landrum, Melissa J; Schaafsma, Gerard C P; Taschner, Peter

    2016-06-01

    Numerous databases containing information about DNA, RNA, and protein variations are available. Gene-specific variant databases (locus-specific variation databases, LSDBs) are typically curated and maintained for single genes or groups of genes for a certain disease(s). These databases are widely considered as the most reliable information source for a particular gene/protein/disease, but it should also be made clear they may have widely varying contents, infrastructure, and quality. Quality is very important to evaluate because these databases may affect health decision-making, research, and clinical practice. The Human Variome Project (HVP) established a Working Group for Variant Database Quality Assessment. The basic principle was to develop a simple system that nevertheless provides a good overview of the quality of a database. The HVP quality evaluation criteria that resulted are divided into four main components: data quality, technical quality, accessibility, and timeliness. This report elaborates on the developed quality criteria and how implementation of the quality scheme can be achieved. Examples are provided for the current status of the quality items in two different databases, BTKbase, an LSDB, and ClinVar, a central archive of submissions about variants and their clinical significance.

  4. Quality assessment of a discharge summary system.

    PubMed Central

    van Walraven, C; Weinberg, A L

    1995-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To assess the completeness of hospital discharge summaries and the efficiency of the discharge summary system in two urban teaching hospitals. DESIGN: Descriptive study, with follow-up telephone survey. SETTING: General internal medicine services at two urban tertiary care hospitals affiliated with the University of Ottawa. PATIENTS: A total of 135 patient charts, representing 10% of the patients discharged from the services between Aug. 1 and Dec. 31, 1993. Three charts were unavailable for review, and 26 were excluded because of patient death, early patient discharge (within 48 hours after admission) or lack of discharge summary; this left 106 summaries for analysis of completeness and 114 (including the charts without a summary) for analysis of efficiency. OUTCOME MEASURES: Completeness: proportion of summaries in which the following information was reported: admission diagnosis, drug allergies, physical examination, significant laboratory tests and results, discharge diagnosis, discharge medications and medical follow-up. Efficiency: time taken to generate the discharge summary and whether the patient's family physician received it. RESULTS: Of the 106 charts with a discharge summary, information was available from the dictation system database for all but one (99.1% complete). Information was missing on the admission diagnosis in 34.0% (36/106) of the summaries, the discharge diagnosis in 25.5% (27/106) and the discharge medications in 22.8% (23/101). Of the 268 significant laboratory tests and results noted in the charts 115 (42.9%) were not reported in the discharge summary. Of the 94 discharge summaries in charts with the patient's family physician listed on the facesheet, 38 (40.4%) were not received by the family physician. CONCLUSIONS: Considerable deficiencies in the completeness of the discharge summaries and the efficiency of the discharge summary system were found in the participating hospitals. Replication of this study in other settings

  5. [The importance of assessing the "quality of life" in surgical interventions for critical lower limb ischaemia].

    PubMed

    Papp, László

    2004-02-01

    'Patency' and 'limb salvage' are not automatically valid parameters when the functional outcome of treatment for critical limb ischaemia is assessed. In a small number of patients the functional result is not favourable despite the anatomical patency and limb salvage. The considerable investment of human/financial resources in the treatment of these patients is retrospectively questionable in such cases. Quality of Life questionnaires give valuable information on the functional outcome of any means of treatment for critical ischaemia. The problem with the generic tools in one particular sub-group of patients is the reliability and validity of the tests. The first disease-specific test in critical limb ischaemia is the King's College Vascular Quality of Life (VascuQoL) Questionnaire. Its use is recommended in patients with critical lower limb ischaemia. It is very useful for scientific reporting and is able to show retrospectively that particular group of patients in whom the technical success of the treatment did not result in improvement in quality of life. In general practice the use of the questionnaire can decrease the factor of subjectivity in the assessment of the current status of a patient with newly diagnosed or previously treated critical ischaemia.

  6. Semi-automatic detection of Gd-DTPA-saline filled capsules for colonic transit time assessment in MRI

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harrer, Christian; Kirchhoff, Sonja; Keil, Andreas; Kirchhoff, Chlodwig; Mussack, Thomas; Lienemann, Andreas; Reiser, Maximilian; Navab, Nassir

    2008-03-01

    Functional gastrointestinal disorders result in a significant number of consultations in primary care facilities. Chronic constipation and diarrhea are regarded as two of the most common diseases affecting between 2% and 27% of the population in western countries 1-3. Defecatory disorders are most commonly due to dysfunction of the pelvic floor or the anal sphincter. Although an exact differentiation of these pathologies is essential for adequate therapy, diagnosis is still only based on a clinical evaluation1. Regarding quantification of constipation only the ingestion of radio-opaque markers or radioactive isotopes and the consecutive assessment of colonic transit time using X-ray or scintigraphy, respectively, has been feasible in clinical settings 4-8. However, these approaches have several drawbacks such as involving rather inconvenient, time consuming examinations and exposing the patient to ionizing radiation. Therefore, conventional assessment of colonic transit time has not been widely used. Most recently a new technique for the assessment of colonic transit time using MRI and MR-contrast media filled capsules has been introduced 9. However, due to numerous examination dates per patient and corresponding datasets with many images, the evaluation of the image data is relatively time-consuming. The aim of our study was to develop a computer tool to facilitate the detection of the capsules in MRI datasets and thus to shorten the evaluation time. We present a semi-automatic tool which provides an intensity, size 10, and shape-based 11,12 detection of ingested Gd-DTPA-saline filled capsules. After an automatic pre-classification, radiologists may easily correct the results using the application-specific user interface, therefore decreasing the evaluation time significantly.

  7. Ambulatory 24-h oesophageal impedance-pH recordings: reliability of automatic analysis for gastro-oesophageal reflux assessment.

    PubMed

    Roman, S; Bruley des Varannes, S; Pouderoux, P; Chaput, U; Mion, F; Galmiche, J-P; Zerbib, F

    2006-11-01

    Oesophageal pH-impedance monitoring allows detection of acid and non-acid gastro-oesophageal reflux (GOR) events. Visual analysis of impedance recording requires expertise. Our aim was to evaluate the efficacy of an automated analysis for GOR assessment. Seventy-three patients with suspected GORD underwent 24-h oesophageal pH-impedance monitoring. Recordings analysis was performed visually (V) and automatically using Autoscan function (AS) of Bioview software. A symptom index (SI) > or =50% was considered for a significant association between symptoms and reflux events. AS analysis detected more reflux events, especially non-acid, liquid, pure gas and proximal events. Detection of oesophageal acid exposure and acid reflux events was similar with both analyses. Agreement between V and AS analysis was good (Kendall's coefficient W > 0.750, P < 0.01) for all parameters. During pH-impedance studies, 65 patients reported symptoms. As compared to visual analysis, the sensitivity and specificity of a positive SI determined by AS were respectively 85.7% and 80% for all reflux events, 100% and 98% for acid reflux and 33% and 87.5% for non-acid reflux. Despite good agreement with visual analysis, automatic analysis overestimates the number of non-acid reflux events. Visual analysis remains the gold standard to detect an association between symptoms and non-acid reflux events.

  8. Myocardial Iron Loading Assessment by Automatic Left Ventricle Segmentation with Morphological Operations and Geodesic Active Contour on T2* images

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luo, Yun-Gang; Ko, Jacky Kl; Shi, Lin; Guan, Yuefeng; Li, Linong; Qin, Jing; Heng, Pheng-Ann; Chu, Winnie Cw; Wang, Defeng

    2015-07-01

    Myocardial iron loading thalassemia patients could be identified using T2* magnetic resonance images (MRI). To quantitatively assess cardiac iron loading, we proposed an effective algorithm to segment aligned free induction decay sequential myocardium images based on morphological operations and geodesic active contour (GAC). Nine patients with thalassemia major were recruited (10 male and 16 female) to undergo a thoracic MRI scan in the short axis view. Free induction decay images were registered for T2* mapping. The GAC were utilized to segment aligned MR images with a robust initialization. Segmented myocardium regions were divided into sectors for a region-based quantification of cardiac iron loading. Our proposed automatic segmentation approach achieve a true positive rate at 84.6% and false positive rate at 53.8%. The area difference between manual and automatic segmentation was 25.5% after 1000 iterations. Results from T2* analysis indicated that regions with intensity lower than 20 ms were suffered from heavy iron loading in thalassemia major patients. The proposed method benefited from abundant edge information of the free induction decay sequential MRI. Experiment results demonstrated that the proposed method is feasible in myocardium segmentation and was clinically applicable to measure myocardium iron loading.

  9. Quality Assessment and Physicochemical Characteristics of Bran Enriched Chapattis

    PubMed Central

    Dar, B. N.; Sharma, Savita; Singh, Baljit; Kaur, Gurkirat

    2014-01-01

    Cereal brans singly and in combination were blended at varying levels (5 and 10%) for development of Chapattis. Cereal bran enriched Chapattis were assessed for quality and physicochemical characteristics. On the basis of quality assessment, 10% enrichment level for Chapatti was the best. Moisture content, water activity, and free fatty acids remained stable during the study period. Quality assessment and physicochemical characteristics of bran enriched Chapattis carried out revealed that dough handling and puffing of bran enriched Chapattis prepared by 5 and 10% level of bran supplementation did not vary significantly. All types of bran enriched Chapattis except rice bran enriched Chapattis showed nonsticky behavior during dough handling. Bran enriched Chapattis exhibited full puffing character during preparation. The sensory attributes showed that both 5 and 10% bran supplemented Chapattis were acceptable. PMID:26904644

  10. Procedure for assessing visual quality for landscape planning and management

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gimblett, H. Randal; Fitzgibbon, John E.; Bechard, Kevin P.; Wightman, J. A.; Itami, Robert M.

    1987-07-01

    Incorporation of aesthetic considerations in the process of landscape planning and development has frequently met with poor results due to its lack of theoretical basis, public involvement, and failure to deal with spatial implications. This problem has been especially evident when dealing with large areas, for example, the Adirondacks, Scenic Highways, and National Forests and Parks. This study made use of public participation to evaluate scenic quality in a portion of the Niagara Escarpment in Southern Ontario, Canada. The results of this study were analyzed using the visual management model proposed by Brown and Itami (1982) as a means of assessing and evaluating scenic quality. The map analysis package formulated by Tomlin (1980) was then applied to this assessment for the purpose of spatial mapping of visual impact. The results of this study illustrate that it is possible to assess visual quality for landscape/management, preservation, and protection using a theoretical basis, public participation, and a systematic spatial mapping process.

  11. Space Shuttle flying qualities and flight control system assessment study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Myers, T. T.; Johnston, D. E.; Mcruer, D.

    1982-01-01

    The suitability of existing and proposed flying quality and flight control system criteria for application to the space shuttle orbiter during atmospheric flight phases was assessed. An orbiter experiment for flying qualities and flight control system design criteria is discussed. Orbiter longitudinal and lateral-directional flying characteristics, flight control system lag and time delay considerations, and flight control manipulator characteristics are included. Data obtained from conventional aircraft may be inappropriate for application to the shuttle orbiter.

  12. [Assessing user satisfaction, an objective for quality of care].

    PubMed

    Séné-Bourgeois, Martine; Mathieu-Chakroun, Isabelle; Margat, Aurore

    The assessment of user satisfaction constitutes a key indicator of the quality of care. It can be envisaged either as part of an internal strategy which favours the improvement of practices, an external strategy whose focus is more commercial and/or an exploratory strategy to develop care models. User satisfaction is expressed in particular through complaint letters and discharge questionnaires. These regulated schemes enable quality to be approached on an individual and collective level.

  13. Quality-of-life assessment techniques for veterinarians.

    PubMed

    Villalobos, Alice E

    2011-05-01

    The revised veterinary oath commits the profession to the prevention and relief of animal suffering. There is a professional obligation to properly assess quality of life (QoL) and confront the issues that ruin it, such as undiagnosed suffering. There are no clinical studies in the arena of QoL assessment at the end of life for pets. This author developed a user-friendly QoL scale to help make proper assessments and decisions along the way to the conclusion of a terminal patient's life. This article discusses decision aids and establishes commonsense techniques to assess a pet's QoL.

  14. Putting continuous quality improvement into accreditation: improving approaches to quality assessment.

    PubMed Central

    Scrivens, E

    1997-01-01

    The accreditation systems of the United States, Canada, and Australia have been restructured to reflect the adoption by health services of the industrial model of continuous quality improvement. The industrial model of quality makes assumptions about management structures and the relation of process to outcome which are not readily transferable to the assessment of quality in health care. The accreditation systems have therefore had to adapt the principles of continuous quality improvement to reflect the complex nature of health service organisations and the often untested assumptions about the relation between process and outcome. PMID:10177038

  15. Machine learning approach for objective inpainting quality assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frantc, V. A.; Voronin, V. V.; Marchuk, V. I.; Sherstobitov, A. I.; Agaian, S.; Egiazarian, K.

    2014-05-01

    This paper focuses on a machine learning approach for objective inpainting quality assessment. Inpainting has received a lot of attention in recent years and quality assessment is an important task to evaluate different image reconstruction approaches. Quantitative metrics for successful image inpainting currently do not exist; researchers instead are relying upon qualitative human comparisons in order to evaluate their methodologies and techniques. We present an approach for objective inpainting quality assessment based on natural image statistics and machine learning techniques. Our method is based on observation that when images are properly normalized or transferred to a transform domain, local descriptors can be modeled by some parametric distributions. The shapes of these distributions are different for noninpainted and inpainted images. Approach permits to obtain a feature vector strongly correlated with a subjective image perception by a human visual system. Next, we use a support vector regression learned on assessed by human images to predict perceived quality of inpainted images. We demonstrate how our predicted quality value repeatably correlates with a qualitative opinion in a human observer study.

  16. Health on the Net Foundation: assessing the quality of health web pages all over the world.

    PubMed

    Boyer, Célia; Gaudinat, Arnaud; Baujard, Vincent; Geissbühler, Antoine

    2007-01-01

    The Internet provides a great amount of information and has become one of the communication media which is most widely used [1]. However, the problem is no longer finding information but assessing the credibility of the publishers as well as the relevance and accuracy of the documents retrieved from the web. This problem is particularly relevant in the medical area which has a direct impact on the well-being of citizens. In this paper, we assume that the quality of web pages can be controlled, even when a huge amount of documents has to be reviewed. But this must be supported by both specific automatic tools and human expertise. In this context, we present various initiatives of the Health on the Net Foundation informing the citizens about the reliability of the medical content on the web.

  17. Assessment of foodservice quality and identification of improvement strategies using hospital foodservice quality model

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Kyungjoo; Kim, Minyoung

    2010-01-01

    The purposes of this study were to assess hospital foodservice quality and to identify causes of quality problems and improvement strategies. Based on the review of literature, hospital foodservice quality was defined and the Hospital Foodservice Quality model was presented. The study was conducted in two steps. In Step 1, nutritional standards specified on diet manuals and nutrients of planned menus, served meals, and consumed meals for regular, diabetic, and low-sodium diets were assessed in three general hospitals. Quality problems were found in all three hospitals since patients consumed less than their nutritional requirements. Considering the effects of four gaps in the Hospital Foodservice Quality model, Gaps 3 and 4 were selected as critical control points (CCPs) for hospital foodservice quality management. In Step 2, the causes of the gaps and improvement strategies at CCPs were labeled as "quality hazards" and "corrective actions", respectively and were identified using a case study. At Gap 3, inaccurate forecasting and a lack of control during production were identified as quality hazards and corrective actions proposed were establishing an accurate forecasting system, improving standardized recipes, emphasizing the use of standardized recipes, and conducting employee training. At Gap 4, quality hazards were menus of low preferences, inconsistency of menu quality, a lack of menu variety, improper food temperatures, and patients' lack of understanding of their nutritional requirements. To reduce Gap 4, the dietary departments should conduct patient surveys on menu preferences on a regular basis, develop new menus, especially for therapeutic diets, maintain food temperatures during distribution, provide more choices, conduct meal rounds, and provide nutrition education and counseling. The Hospital Foodservice Quality Model was a useful tool for identifying causes of the foodservice quality problems and improvement strategies from a holistic point of view

  18. Assessment of phytoplankton diversity as an indicator of water quality

    SciTech Connect

    Yergeau, S.E.; Lang, A.; Teeters, R.

    1997-08-01

    For the measurement of water quality in freshwater systems, there are established indices using macroinvertebrate larvae. There is no such comparable measure for marine and estuarine environments. A phytoplankton diversity index (PDI), whose basic form was conceived by Dr. Ruth Gyure of Save the Sound, Inc., is being investigated as a possible candidate to rectify this situation. Phytoplankton were chosen as the indicators of water quality since algae have short generation times and respond quickly to changing water quality conditions. The methodologies involved in this initial assessment of the PDI are incorporated into the Adopt-a-Harbor water quality monitoring program and its associated laboratory. The virtues of the procedures are that they are simple and quick to use, suitable for trained volunteers to carry out, easily reproducible, and amenable to quality assurance checks.

  19. Technology-Enhanced Assessment of Math Fact Automaticity: Patterns of Performance for Low- and Typically Achieving Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stickney, Eric M.; Sharp, Lindsay B.; Kenyon, Amanda S.

    2012-01-01

    Because math fact automaticity has been identified as a key barrier for students struggling with mathematics, we examined how initial math achievement levels influenced the path to automaticity (e.g., variation in number of attempts, speed of retrieval, and skill maintenance over time) and the relation between attainment of automaticity and gains…

  20. Diagnostic Assessment of Childhood Apraxia of Speech Using Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR) Methods.

    PubMed

    Hosom, John-Paul; Shriberg, Lawrence; Green, Jordan R

    2004-12-01

    We report findings from two feasibility studies using automatic speech recognition (ASR) methods in childhood speech sound disorders. The studies evaluated and implemented the automation of two recently proposed diagnostic markers for suspected Apraxia of Speech (AOS) termed the Lexical Stress Ratio (LSR) and the Coefficient of Variation Ratio (CVR). The LSR is a weighted composite of amplitude area, frequency area , and duration in the stressed compared to the unstressed vowel as obtained from a speaker's productions of eight trochaic word forms. Composite weightings for the three stress parameters were determined from a principal components analysis. The CVR expresses the average normalized variability of durations of pause and speech events that were obtained from a conversational speech sample. We describe the automation procedures used to obtain LSR and CVR scores for four children with suspected AOS and report comparative findings. The LSR values obtained with ASR were within 1.2% to 6.7% of the LSR values obtained manually using Computerized Speech Lab (CSL). The CVR values obtained with ASR were within 0.7% to 2.7% of the CVR values obtained manually using Matlab. These results indicate the potential of ASR-based techniques to process these and other diagnostic markers of childhood speech sound disorders.

  1. Automated content and quality assessment of full-motion-video for the generation of meta data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harguess, Josh

    2015-05-01

    Virtually all of the video data (and full-motion-video (FMV)) that is currently collected and stored in support of missions has been corrupted to various extents by image acquisition and compression artifacts. Additionally, video collected by wide-area motion imagery (WAMI) surveillance systems and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and similar sources is often of low quality or in other ways corrupted so that it is not worth storing or analyzing. In order to make progress in the problem of automatic video analysis, the first problem that should be solved is deciding whether the content of the video is even worth analyzing to begin with. We present a work in progress to address three types of scenes which are typically found in real-world data stored in support of Department of Defense (DoD) missions: no or very little motion in the scene, large occlusions in the scene, and fast camera motion. Each of these produce video that is generally not usable to an analyst or automated algorithm for mission support and therefore should be removed or flagged to the user as such. We utilize recent computer vision advances in motion detection and optical flow to automatically assess FMV for the identification and generation of meta-data (or tagging) of video segments which exhibit unwanted scenarios as described above. Results are shown on representative real-world video data.

  2. Forensic mental health assessment in France: recommendations for quality improvement.

    PubMed

    Combalbert, Nicolas; Andronikof, Anne; Armand, Marine; Robin, Cécile; Bazex, Hélène

    2014-01-01

    The quality of forensic mental health assessment has been a growing concern in various countries on both sides of the Atlantic, but the legal systems are not always comparable and some aspects of forensic assessment are specific to a given country. This paper describes the legal context of forensic psychological assessment in France (i.e. pre-trial investigation phase entrusted to a judge, with mental health assessment performed by preselected professionals called "experts" in French), its advantages and its pitfalls. Forensic psychiatric or psychological assessment is often an essential and decisive element in criminal cases, but since a judiciary scandal which was made public in 2005 (the Outreau case) there has been increasing criticism from the public and the legal profession regarding the reliability of clinical conclusions. Several academic studies and a parliamentary report have highlighted various faulty aspects in both the judiciary process and the mental health assessments. The heterogeneity of expert practices in France appears to be mainly related to a lack of consensus on several core notions such as mental health diagnosis or assessment methods, poor working conditions, lack of specialized training, and insufficient familiarity with the Code of Ethics. In this article we describe and analyze the French practice of forensic psychologists and psychiatrists in criminal cases and propose steps that could be taken to improve its quality, such as setting up specialized training courses, enforcing the Code of Ethics for psychologists, and calling for consensus on diagnostic and assessment methods.

  3. Supporting Students in C++ Programming Courses with Automatic Program Style Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ala-Mutka, Kirsti; Uimonen, Toni; Jarvinen, Hannu-Matti

    2004-01-01

    Professional programmers need common coding conventions to assure co-operation and a degree of quality of the software. Novice programmers, however, easily forget issues of programming style in their programming coursework. In particular with large classes, students may pass several courses without learning elements of programming style. This is…

  4. School Indoor Air Quality Assessments Go Mobile / EPA Launches School IAQ Assessment Mobile App

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today launched a new mobile app to assist schools and school districts with performing comprehensive indoor air quality (IAQ) facility assessments to protect the health of children and sch

  5. Assessing Quality of Pre-Service Physics Teachers' Written Arguments

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Aydeniz, Mehmet; Gürçay, Deniz

    2013-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this study was to assess the quality of scientific arguments developed by pre-service physics teachers. Sample: The participants were 171 pre-service physics teachers recruited from two universities: 86 from University A and 85 from University B. Design and method: Participants were prompted to develop a written argument to…

  6. Measure for Measure: Advancement's Role in Assessments of Institutional Quality.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wedekind, Annie; Pollack, Rachel H.

    2002-01-01

    Explores how accreditation, bond ratings, and magazine rankings--including advancement's role in these assessments--continue to be incomplete and controversial indicators of educational quality. Asserts that advancement officers should work to demonstrate the importance of their efforts, such as increasing endowments and alumni support, within the…

  7. Quality Management and Self Assessment Tools for Public Libraries.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Evans, Margaret Kinnell

    This paper describes a two-year study by the British Library Research and Innovation Centre that examined the potential of self-assessment for public library services. The approaches that formed the basis for the investigation were the Business Excellence Model, the Quality Framework, and the Democratic Approach. Core values were identified by…

  8. Heuristic Model Of The Composite Quality Index Of Environmental Assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khabarov, A. N.; Knyaginin, A. A.; Bondarenko, D. V.; Shepet, I. P.; Korolkova, L. N.

    2017-01-01

    The goal of the paper is to present the heuristic model of the composite environmental quality index based on the integrated application of the elements of utility theory, multidimensional scaling, expert evaluation and decision-making. The composite index is synthesized in linear-quadratic form, it provides higher adequacy of the results of the assessment preferences of experts and decision-makers.

  9. Quality of Feedback Following Performance Assessments: Does Assessor Expertise Matter?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Govaerts, Marjan J. B.; van de Wiel, Margje W. J.; van der Vleuten, Cees P. M.

    2013-01-01

    Purpose: This study aims to investigate quality of feedback as offered by supervisor-assessors with varying levels of assessor expertise following assessment of performance in residency training in a health care setting. It furthermore investigates if and how different levels of assessor expertise influence feedback characteristics.…

  10. The Assessment of Service Quality in Higher Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Delene, Linda; Bunda, Mary Anne

    This paper presents a market driven model for assessing the service quality of support services in higher education, primarily for United States institutions, by examining higher education within the context of a complex service industry. The paper begins by explaining the development of the model and its implications for service management. Next,…

  11. Quality Assured Assessment Processes: Evaluating Staff Response to Change

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Malau-Aduli, Bunmi S.; Zimitat, Craig; Malau-Aduli, Aduli E. O.

    2011-01-01

    Medical education is not exempt from the increasing societal expectations of accountability and this is evidenced by an increasing number of litigation cases by students who are dissatisfied with their assessment. The time and monetary costs of student appeals makes it imperative that medical schools adopt robust quality assured assessment…

  12. From "Good" to "Functionally Appropriate": Assessing Translation Quality.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schaffner, Christina

    1997-01-01

    Describes Translation Quality Assessment (TQA), an approach to evaluating translation that incorporates aspects of textlinguistic, pragmatic, and discourse models of translation and focuses on text as a communicative occurrence, within a specific context, rather than a series of words and grammatical structures. A functionalist approach to…

  13. A Methodological Proposal for Learning Games Selection and Quality Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dondi, Claudio; Moretti, Michela

    2007-01-01

    This paper presents a methodological proposal elaborated in the framework of two European projects dealing with game-based learning, both of which have focused on "quality" aspects in order to create suitable tools that support European educators, practitioners and lifelong learners in selecting and assessing learning games for use in…

  14. Miniature spinning as a fiber quality assessment tool

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Miniature spinning has long been used to assess cotton varieties in a timely manner. It has been an accepted fact that the quality of miniature spinning is less than optimal, but that it allows a direct comparison between cottons during varietal studies. Recently, researchers have made processing ...

  15. Quality Assessment of Undergraduate Education in China: A Policy Analysis

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Liu, Shuiyun; Rosa, Maria Joao

    2008-01-01

    This paper analyses a higher education policy issued in China in 2002: the Quality Assessment of Undergraduate Education Policy. The policy was designed with four main objectives: improvement, compliance, information and accountability. However, it has not completely fulfilled its objectives, especially regarding improvement and accountability,…

  16. Parameters of Higher Education Quality Assessment System at Universities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Savickiene, Izabela

    2005-01-01

    The article analyses the system of institutional quality assessment at universities and lays foundation to its functional, morphological and processual parameters. It also presents the concept of the system and discusses the distribution of systems into groups, defines information, accountability, improvement and benchmarking functions of higher…

  17. Quality and Assessment in Context: A Brief Review

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Koslowski, Fred A., III

    2006-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to provide a general review for USA and international academic faculty and administrators of the dominant themes and history of quality and assessment in both industry and Higher Education, and how they relate to each other in order to stimulate and encourage debate as well as influence policy.…

  18. Parameters of Higher School Internationalization and Quality Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Juknyte-Petreikiene, Inga

    2006-01-01

    The article presents the analysis of higher education internationalization, its conceptions and forms of manifestation. It investigates the ways and means of higher education internationalization, the diversity of higher school internationalization motives, the issues of higher education internationalization quality assessment, presenting an…

  19. Feedback Effects of Teaching Quality Assessment: Macro and Micro Evidence

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bianchini, Stefano

    2014-01-01

    This study investigates the feedback effects of teaching quality assessment. Previous literature looked separately at the evolution of individual and aggregate scores to understand whether instructors and university performance depends on its past evaluation. I propose a new quantitative-based methodology, combining statistical distributions and…

  20. Quality Assessment Parameters for Student Support at Higher Education Institutions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sajiene, Laima; Tamuliene, Rasa

    2012-01-01

    The research presented in this article aims to validate quality assessment parameters for student support at higher education institutions. Student support is discussed as the system of services provided by a higher education institution which helps to develop student-centred curriculum and fulfils students' emotional, academic, social needs, and…

  1. Competitive Funding Models, Resource Management and Quality Assessment.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sizer, John

    1994-01-01

    Reviews, from a management accountant and funding council chief executive's perspective, relationship among (British) funding council models for competitive funding of higher education institutions, resource management, and quality assessments of teaching and learning. Posits a constrained funding environment for the rest of the 1990s. Concludes…

  2. Quality Control Charts in Large-Scale Assessment Programs

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schafer, William D.; Coverdale, Bradley J.; Luxenberg, Harlan; Jin, Ying

    2011-01-01

    There are relatively few examples of quantitative approaches to quality control in educational assessment and accountability contexts. Among the several techniques that are used in other fields, Shewart charts have been found in a few instances to be applicable in educational settings. This paper describes Shewart charts and gives examples of how…

  3. [Assessments during Medical Specialists Training: quantity or quality?

    PubMed

    Hamming, J F

    2017-01-01

    Structured assessments form a mandatory part of Dutch Medical Specialist Training, but create administrative workload for both the staff and supervisors. One could argue that the quality of the narrative feedback is more important than the extensive reporting in learning portfolios, and that the focus should be on continuous on-the-job coaching.

  4. Quality of Information Assurance - Assessment, Management and Use (QIAAMU)

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2013-04-01

    QUALITY OF INFORMATION ASSURANCE – ASSESSMENT, MANAGEMENT AND USE (QIAAMU) RAYTHEON BBN TECHNOLGIES APRIL 2013 FINAL TECHNICAL...unit uses a mobile platform (laptop plus radio and SATCOM gear) for information operations such as calling in air support or feeding air operation

  5. Incorporating Contaminant Bioavailability into Sediment Quality Assessment Frameworks

    EPA Science Inventory

    The recently adopted sediment quality assessment framework for evaluating bay and estuarine sediments in the State of California incorporates bulk sediment chemistry as a key line of evidence(LOE) but does not address the bioavailability of measured contaminants. Thus, the chemis...

  6. Evaluating the Assessment: Sources of Evidence for Quality Assurance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Birenbaum, Menucha

    2007-01-01

    High quality assessment practice is expected to yield valid and useful score-based interpretations about what the examinees know and are able to do with respect to a defined target domain. Given this assertion, the article presents a framework based on the "unified view of validity," advanced by Cronbach and Messick over two decades ago, to assist…

  7. A research review of quality assessment for software

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1991-01-01

    Measures were recommended to assess the quality of software submitted to the AdaNet program. The quality factors that are important to software reuse are explored and methods of evaluating those factors are discussed. Quality factors important to software reuse are: correctness, reliability, verifiability, understandability, modifiability, and certifiability. Certifiability is included because the documentation of many factors about a software component such as its efficiency, portability, and development history, constitute a class for factors important to some users, not important at all to other, and impossible for AdaNet to distinguish between a priori. The quality factors may be assessed in different ways. There are a few quantitative measures which have been shown to indicate software quality. However, it is believed that there exists many factors that indicate quality and have not been empirically validated due to their subjective nature. These subjective factors are characterized by the way in which they support the software engineering principles of abstraction, information hiding, modularity, localization, confirmability, uniformity, and completeness.

  8. 42 CFR 460.136 - Internal quality assessment and performance improvement activities.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 4 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Internal quality assessment and performance...) PROGRAMS OF ALL-INCLUSIVE CARE FOR THE ELDERLY (PACE) Quality Assessment and Performance Improvement § 460.136 Internal quality assessment and performance improvement activities. (a) Quality assessment...

  9. 42 CFR 460.136 - Internal quality assessment and performance improvement activities.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 4 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Internal quality assessment and performance...) PROGRAMS OF ALL-INCLUSIVE CARE FOR THE ELDERLY (PACE) Quality Assessment and Performance Improvement § 460.136 Internal quality assessment and performance improvement activities. (a) Quality assessment...

  10. 42 CFR 460.136 - Internal quality assessment and performance improvement activities.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 4 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Internal quality assessment and performance...) PROGRAMS OF ALL-INCLUSIVE CARE FOR THE ELDERLY (PACE) Quality Assessment and Performance Improvement § 460.136 Internal quality assessment and performance improvement activities. (a) Quality assessment...

  11. 42 CFR 460.136 - Internal quality assessment and performance improvement activities.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 4 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Internal quality assessment and performance...) PROGRAMS OF ALL-INCLUSIVE CARE FOR THE ELDERLY (PACE) Quality Assessment and Performance Improvement § 460.136 Internal quality assessment and performance improvement activities. (a) Quality assessment...

  12. 42 CFR 460.136 - Internal quality assessment and performance improvement activities.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 4 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Internal quality assessment and performance...) PROGRAMS OF ALL-INCLUSIVE CARE FOR THE ELDERLY (PACE) Quality Assessment and Performance Improvement § 460.136 Internal quality assessment and performance improvement activities. (a) Quality assessment...

  13. Using Automatic Speech Recognition to Assess Spoken Responses to Cognitive Tests of Semantic Verbal Fluency.

    PubMed

    Pakhomov, Serguei V S; Marino, Susan E; Banks, Sarah; Bernick, Charles

    2015-12-01

    Cognitive tests of verbal fluency (VF) consist of verbalizing as many words as possible in one minute that either start with a specific letter of the alphabet or belong to a specific semantic category. These tests are widely used in neurological, psychiatric, mental health, and school settings and their validity for clinical applications has been extensively demonstrated. However, VF tests are currently administered and scored manually making them too cumbersome to use, particularly for longitudinal cognitive monitoring in large populations. The objective of the current study was to determine if automatic speech recognition (ASR) could be used for computerized administration and scoring of VF tests. We examined established techniques for constraining language modeling to a predefined vocabulary from a specific semantic category (e.g., animals). We also experimented with post-processing ASR output with confidence scoring, as well as with using speaker adaptation to improve automated VF scoring. Audio responses to a VF task were collected from 38 novice and experienced professional fighters (boxing and mixed martial arts) participating in a longitudinal study of effects of repetitive head trauma on brain function. Word error rate, correlation with manual word count and distance from manual word count were used to compare ASR-based approaches to scoring to each other and to the manually scored reference standard. Our study's results show that responses to the VF task contain a large number of extraneous utterances and noise that lead to relatively poor baseline ASR performance. However, we also found that speaker adaptation combined with confidence scoring significantly improves all three metrics and can enable use of ASR for reliable estimates of the traditional manual VF scores.

  14. Using Automatic Speech Recognition to Assess Spoken Responses to Cognitive Tests of Semantic Verbal Fluency

    PubMed Central

    Pakhomov, Serguei V.S.; Marino, Susan E.; Banks, Sarah; Bernick, Charles

    2015-01-01

    Cognitive tests of verbal fluency (VF) consist of verbalizing as many words as possible in one minute that either start with a specific letter of the alphabet or belong to a specific semantic category. These tests are widely used in neurological, psychiatric, mental health, and school settings and their validity for clinical applications has been extensively demonstrated. However, VF tests are currently administered and scored manually making them too cumbersome to use, particularly for longitudinal cognitive monitoring in large populations. The objective of the current study was to determine if automatic speech recognition (ASR) could be used for computerized administration and scoring of VF tests. We examined established techniques for constraining language modeling to a predefined vocabulary from a specific semantic category (e.g., animals). We also experimented with post-processing ASR output with confidence scoring, as well as with using speaker adaptation to improve automated VF scoring. Audio responses to a VF task were collected from 38 novice and experienced professional fighters (boxing and mixed martial arts) participating in a longitudinal study of effects of repetitive head trauma on brain function. Word error rate, correlation with manual word count and distance from manual word count were used to compare ASR-based approaches to scoring to each other and to the manually scored reference standard. Our study's results show that responses to the VF task contain a large number of extraneous utterances and noise that lead to relatively poor baseline ASR performance. However, we also found that speaker adaptation combined with confidence scoring significantly improves all three metrics and can enable use of ASR for reliable estimates of the traditional manual VF scores. PMID:26622073

  15. Water Quality Assessment of Ayeyarwady River in Myanmar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thatoe Nwe Win, Thanda; Bogaard, Thom; van de Giesen, Nick

    2015-04-01

    Myanmar's socio-economic activities, urbanisation, industrial operations and agricultural production have increased rapidly in recent years. With the increase of socio-economic development and climate change impacts, there is an increasing threat on quantity and quality of water resources. In Myanmar, some of the drinking water coverage still comes from unimproved sources including rivers. The Ayeyarwady River is the main river in Myanmar draining most of the country's area. The use of chemical fertilizer in the agriculture, the mining activities in the catchment area, wastewater effluents from the industries and communities and other development activities generate pollutants of different nature. Therefore water quality monitoring is of utmost importance. In Myanmar, there are many government organizations linked to water quality management. Each water organization monitors water quality for their own purposes. The monitoring is haphazard, short term and based on individual interest and the available equipment. The monitoring is not properly coordinated and a quality assurance programme is not incorporated in most of the work. As a result, comprehensive data on the water quality of rivers in Myanmar is not available. To provide basic information, action is needed at all management levels. The need for comprehensive and accurate assessments of trends in water quality has been recognized. For such an assessment, reliable monitoring data are essential. The objective of our work is to set-up a multi-objective surface water quality monitoring programme. The need for a scientifically designed network to monitor the Ayeyarwady river water quality is obvious as only limited and scattered data on water quality is available. However, the set-up should also take into account the current socio-economic situation and should be flexible to adjust after first years of monitoring. Additionally, a state-of-the-art baseline river water quality sampling program is required which

  16. Automatic testing and assessment of neuroanatomy using a digital brain atlas: method and development of computer- and mobile-based applications.

    PubMed

    Nowinski, Wieslaw L; Thirunavuukarasuu, Arumugam; Ananthasubramaniam, Anand; Chua, Beng Choon; Qian, Guoyu; Nowinska, Natalia G; Marchenko, Yevgen; Volkau, Ihar

    2009-10-01

    Preparation of tests and student's assessment by the instructor are time consuming. We address these two tasks in neuroanatomy education by employing a digital media application with a three-dimensional (3D), interactive, fully segmented, and labeled brain atlas. The anatomical and vascular models in the atlas are linked to Terminologia Anatomica. Because the cerebral models are fully segmented and labeled, our approach enables automatic and random atlas-derived generation of questions to test location and naming of cerebral structures. This is done in four steps: test individualization by the instructor, test taking by the students at their convenience, automatic student assessment by the application, and communication of the individual assessment to the instructor. A computer-based application with an interactive 3D atlas and a preliminary mobile-based application were developed to realize this approach. The application works in two test modes: instructor and student. In the instructor mode, the instructor customizes the test by setting the scope of testing and student performance criteria, which takes a few seconds. In the student mode, the student is tested and automatically assessed. Self-testing is also feasible at any time and pace. Our approach is automatic both with respect to test generation and student assessment. It is also objective, rapid, and customizable. We believe that this approach is novel from computer-based, mobile-based, and atlas-assisted standpoints.

  17. Perceptual quality assessment of JPEG, JPEG 2000, and JPEG XR

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bruylants, T.; Barbarien, J.; Munteanu, A.; Schelkens, P.

    2010-05-01

    In this paper, we examine the rate-distortion performance in terms of perceptual quality of JPEG XR (ISO/IEC 29199-2 | ITU-T Rec. T.832)1 and earlier standardized image compression algorithms such as JPEG (ISO/IEC 10918-1 | ITU-T Rec. T.81)2 and JPEG 2000 (ISO/IEC 15444-1 | ITU-T Rec. T.800)3. Unfortunately, objective visual quality metrics (like MSE, PSNR, VQM, SSIM, etc.) do not always correlate well with the actual perceived image quality. In some specific cases, it is even possible that certain visible coding artifacts remain undetectable by these objective visual quality tests. As such, we conducted a series of subjective visual quality assessment tests to measure the visual performance of JPEG XR, JPEG 2000 and JPEG. This paper describes the design of the subjective visual quality assessment experiments, addressing the encountered difficulties and potential pitfalls. Our results indicate that for high bit-rates (i.e. more than 1 bpp) all three codecs more or less have an equal overall performance. However, as expected, at lower bit-rates JPEG performs significantly weaker for every tested image than JPEG 2000 and JPEG XR. On the other hand, both JPEG 2000 and JPEG XR appear to be very competitive at these low bit-rate ranges. Only for specific image content types (e.g. smooth gradient surfaces), JPEG XR appears to have some difficulties. Nevertheless, discarding the fact that JPEG 2000 offers more functionality features than JPEG XR, the latter performed very good for most images and almost in par with JPEG 2000. As a conclusion, the results of the subjective visual quality assessment tests show that JPEG XR successfully passed our verification experiments for low dynamic range imagery.

  18. Comparative Local Quality Assessment of 3D Medical Image Segmentations with Focus on Statistical Shape Model-Based Algorithms.

    PubMed

    Landesberger, Tatiana von; Basgier, Dennis; Becker, Meike

    2016-12-01

    The quality of automatic 3D medical segmentation algorithms needs to be assessed on test datasets comprising several 3D images (i.e., instances of an organ). The experts need to compare the segmentation quality across the dataset in order to detect systematic segmentation problems. However, such comparative evaluation is not supported well by current methods. We present a novel system for assessing and comparing segmentation quality in a dataset with multiple 3D images. The data is analyzed and visualized in several views. We detect and show regions with systematic segmentation quality characteristics. For this purpose, we extended a hierarchical clustering algorithm with a connectivity criterion. We combine quality values across the dataset for determining regions with characteristic segmentation quality across instances. Using our system, the experts can also identify 3D segmentations with extraordinary quality characteristics. While we focus on algorithms based on statistical shape models, our approach can also be applied to cases, where landmark correspondences among instances can be established. We applied our approach to three real datasets: liver, cochlea and facial nerve. The segmentation experts were able to identify organ regions with systematic segmentation characteristics as well as to detect outlier instances.

  19. Assessing Metadata Quality of a Federally Sponsored Health Data Repository.

    PubMed

    Marc, David T; Beattie, James; Herasevich, Vitaly; Gatewood, Laël; Zhang, Rui

    2016-01-01

    The U.S. Federal Government developed HealthData.gov to disseminate healthcare datasets to the public. Metadata is provided for each datasets and is the sole source of information to find and retrieve data. This study employed automated quality assessments of the HealthData.gov metadata published from 2012 to 2014 to measure completeness, accuracy, and consistency of applying standards. The results demonstrated that metadata published in earlier years had lower completeness, accuracy, and consistency. Also, metadata that underwent modifications following their original creation were of higher quality. HealthData.gov did not uniformly apply Dublin Core Metadata Initiative to the metadata, which is a widely accepted metadata standard. These findings suggested that the HealthData.gov metadata suffered from quality issues, particularly related to information that wasn't frequently updated. The results supported the need for policies to standardize metadata and contributed to the development of automated measures of metadata quality.

  20. Reduced-reference image quality assessment using moment method

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Diwei; Shen, Yuantong; Shen, Yongluo; Li, Hongwei

    2016-10-01

    Reduced-reference image quality assessment (RR IQA) aims to evaluate the perceptual quality of a distorted image through partial information of the corresponding reference image. In this paper, a novel RR IQA metric is proposed by using the moment method. We claim that the first and second moments of wavelet coefficients of natural images can have approximate and regular change that are disturbed by different types of distortions, and that this disturbance can be relevant to human perceptions of quality. We measure the difference of these statistical parameters between reference and distorted image to predict the visual quality degradation. The introduced IQA metric is suitable for implementation and has relatively low computational complexity. The experimental results on Laboratory for Image and Video Engineering (LIVE) and Tampere Image Database (TID) image databases indicate that the proposed metric has a good predictive performance.

  1. Assessing Metadata Quality of a Federally Sponsored Health Data Repository

    PubMed Central

    Marc, David T.; Beattie, James; Herasevich, Vitaly; Gatewood, Laël; Zhang, Rui

    2016-01-01

    The U.S. Federal Government developed HealthData.gov to disseminate healthcare datasets to the public. Metadata is provided for each datasets and is the sole source of information to find and retrieve data. This study employed automated quality assessments of the HealthData.gov metadata published from 2012 to 2014 to measure completeness, accuracy, and consistency of applying standards. The results demonstrated that metadata published in earlier years had lower completeness, accuracy, and consistency. Also, metadata that underwent modifications following their original creation were of higher quality. HealthData.gov did not uniformly apply Dublin Core Metadata Initiative to the metadata, which is a widely accepted metadata standard. These findings suggested that the HealthData.gov metadata suffered from quality issues, particularly related to information that wasn’t frequently updated. The results supported the need for policies to standardize metadata and contributed to the development of automated measures of metadata quality. PMID:28269883

  2. Space Shuttle flying qualities and flight control system assessment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Myers, T. T.; Mcruer, D. T.; Johnston, D. E.

    1982-01-01

    This paper reviews issues, data, and analyses relevant to the longitudinal flying qualities of the Space Shuttle in approach and landing. The manual control of attitude and path are first examined theoretically to demonstrate the unconventional nature of the Shuttle's augmented pitch and path response characteristics. The time domain pitch rate transient response criterion used for design of the Shuttle flight control system is examined in context with data from recent flying qualities experiments and operational aircraft. Questions arising from this examination are addressed through comparisons with MIL-F-8785C and other proposed flying qualities criteria which indicate potential longitudinal flying qualities problems. However, it is shown that these criteria, based largely on data from conventional aircraft, may be inappropriate for assessing the Shuttle.

  3. Evaluating the Role of Content in Subjective Video Quality Assessment

    PubMed Central

    Vrgovic, Petar

    2014-01-01

    Video quality as perceived by human observers is the ground truth when Video Quality Assessment (VQA) is in question. It is dependent on many variables, one of them being the content of the video that is being evaluated. Despite the evidence that content has an impact on the quality score the sequence receives from human evaluators, currently available VQA databases mostly comprise of sequences which fail to take this into account. In this paper, we aim to identify and analyze differences between human cognitive, affective, and conative responses to a set of videos commonly used for VQA and a set of videos specifically chosen to include video content which might affect the judgment of evaluators when perceived video quality is in question. Our findings indicate that considerable differences exist between the two sets on selected factors, which leads us to conclude that videos starring a different type of content than the currently employed ones might be more appropriate for VQA. PMID:24523643

  4. Ensuring the quality of occupational safety risk assessment.

    PubMed

    Pinto, Abel; Ribeiro, Rita A; Nunes, Isabel L

    2013-03-01

    In work environments, the main aim of occupational safety risk assessment (OSRA) is to improve the safety level of an installation or site by either preventing accidents and injuries or minimizing their consequences. To this end, it is of paramount importance to identify all sources of hazards and assess their potential to cause problems in the respective context. If the OSRA process is inadequate and/or not applied effectively, it results in an ineffective safety prevention program and inefficient use of resources. An appropriate OSRA is an essential component of the occupational safety risk management process in industries. In this article, we performed a survey to elicit the relative importance for identified OSRA tasks to enable an in-depth evaluation of the quality of risk assessments related to occupational safety aspects on industrial sites. The survey involved defining a questionnaire with the most important elements (tasks) for OSRA quality assessment, which was then presented to safety experts in the mining, electrical power production, transportation, and petrochemical industries. With this work, we expect to contribute to the main question of OSRA in industries: "What constitutes a good occupational safety risk assessment?" The results obtained from the questionnaire showed that experts agree with the proposed OSRA process decomposition in steps and tasks (taxonomy) and also with the importance of assigning weights to obtain knowledge about OSRA task relevance. The knowledge gained will enable us, in the near future, to build a framework to evaluate OSRA quality for industrial sites.

  5. Validity of portfolio assessment: which qualities determine ratings?

    PubMed

    Driessen, Erik W; Overeem, Karlijn; van Tartwijk, Jan; van der Vleuten, Cees P M; Muijtjens, Arno M M

    2006-09-01

    The portfolio is becoming increasingly accepted as a valuable tool for learning and assessment. The validity of portfolio assessment, however, may suffer from bias due to irrelevant qualities, such as lay-out and writing style. We examined the possible effects of such qualities in a portfolio programme aimed at stimulating Year 1 medical students to reflect on their professional and personal development. In later curricular years, this portfolio is also used to judge clinical competence. We developed an instrument, the Portfolio Analysis Scoring Inventory, to examine the impact of form and content aspects on portfolio assessment. The Inventory consists of 15 items derived from interviews with experienced mentors, the literature, and the criteria for reflective competence used in the regular portfolio assessment procedure. Forty portfolios, selected from 231 portfolios for which ratings from the regular assessment procedure were available, were rated by 2 researchers, independently, using the Inventory. Regression analysis was used to estimate the correlation between the ratings from the regular assessment and those resulting from the Inventory items. Inter-rater agreement ranged from 0.46 to 0.87. The strongest predictor of the variance in the regular ratings was 'quality of reflection' (R 0.80; R2 66%). No further items accounted for a significant proportion of variance. Irrelevant items, such as writing style and lay-out, had negligible effects. The absence of an impact of irrelevant criteria appears to support the validity of the portfolio assessment procedure. Further studies should examine the portfolio's validity for the assessment of clinical competence.

  6. A Methodology for Anatomic Ultrasound Image Diagnostic Quality Assessment.

    PubMed

    Hemmsen, Martin Christian; Lange, Theis; Brandt, Andreas Hjelm; Nielsen, Michael Bachmann; Jensen, Jorgen Arendt

    2017-01-01

    This paper discusses the methods for the assessment of ultrasound image quality based on our experiences with evaluating new methods for anatomic imaging. It presents a methodology to ensure a fair assessment between competing imaging methods using clinically relevant evaluations. The methodology is valuable in the continuing process of method optimization and guided development of new imaging methods. It includes a three phased study plan covering from initial prototype development to clinical assessment. Recommendations to the clinical assessment protocol, software, and statistical analysis are presented. Earlier uses of the methodology has shown that it ensures validity of the assessment, as it separates the influences between developer, investigator, and assessor once a research protocol has been established. This separation reduces confounding influences on the result from the developer to properly reveal the clinical value. This paper exemplifies the methodology using recent studies of synthetic aperture sequential beamforming tissue harmonic imaging.

  7. [Assessment indicators of soil quality in hilly Loess plateau].

    PubMed

    Xu, Mingxiang; Liu, Guobin; Zhao, Yunge

    2005-10-01

    By the methods of sensitivity analysis, main component analsis and discriminant analysis, this paper screened the sensitive indicators from 32 soil attributes to assess the productivity and erosion-resistance ability of the soils in hilly Loess Plateau. The results showed that soil available phosphorus content, anti-scouring ability, infiltration coefficient, labile organic carbon content, organic matter content and urease activity were the most sensitive indicators for soil quality assessment and the main targets for soil quality management and improvement, while soil biological indicators were with high and medium sensitivity. Five soil quality factors were summed up from 29 soil chemical, physical and biological attributes, i. e., organic matter, texture, phosphorus, porosity and microstructure. Except the factor porosity, the other four factors were significantly different between different land use types. Eight indicators including soil organic matter content, infiltration coefficient, anti-scouring ability, CEC, invertase activity, mean weight diameter (MWD) of aggregates, available phosphorus, and MWD of microaggregate were identified as the assessment indicators of the soil quality in hilly Loess Plateau, with the organic matter content, infiltration coefficient and anti-scouring ability as the key indicators.

  8. National Water-Quality Assessment Program: The Sacramento River Basin

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Domagalski, Joseph L.; Brown, Larry R.

    1994-01-01

    In 1991, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) began to implement a full-scale National Water-Quality Assessment (NAWQA) program. The long-term goals of the NAWQA program are to describe the status of and trends in the quality of a large, representative part of the Nation's surface- and ground-water resources and to identify the major natural and human factors that affect the quality of those resources. In addressing these goals, the program will provide a wealth of water- quality information that will be useful to policy makers and managers at the national, State, and local levels. A major asset of the NAWQA program is that it will allow for the integration of water-quality information collected at several scales. A major component of the program is the study-unit investigation-the foundation of national- level assessment. The 60 study units of the NAWQA program are hydrologic systems that include parts of most major river basins and aquifer systems of the conterminous United States. These study units cover areas of 1,000 to more than 60,000 square miles and represent 60 to 70 percent of the Nation's water use and population served by public water supplies. Investigations of the first 20 study units began in 1991. In 1994, the Sacramento River Basin was among the second set of 20 NAWQA study units selected for investigation.

  9. Automatic Imitation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Heyes, Cecilia

    2011-01-01

    "Automatic imitation" is a type of stimulus-response compatibility effect in which the topographical features of task-irrelevant action stimuli facilitate similar, and interfere with dissimilar, responses. This article reviews behavioral, neurophysiological, and neuroimaging research on automatic imitation, asking in what sense it is "automatic"…

  10. Using the data quality objectives process in risk assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-07-01

    The Environmental Protection Agency`s Quality Assurance Management Staff has developed a systematic process, the Data Quality Objectives (DQO) process, as an important tool for assisting project managers and planners in determining the type, quantity, and quality of environmental data sufficient for environmental decision-making. This information brief presents the basic concepts of, and information requirements for using the DQO process to plan the collection of the necessary environmental data, to support the performance of human health risk assessments under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act or Resource Conservation and Recovery Act. The goal of the DQO process is to identify the type, quality, and quantity of data required to support remedial action decisions which are based on risk assessment and its associated uncertainties. The DQO process consists of a number of discrete steps. These steps include a statement of the problem and the decision to be made, identifying inputs to the decision, developing a decision rule, and optimizing the design for data collection. In defining the data for input into the decision, a Site Conceptual Exposure Model should be developed to identify the existing or potential complete exposure pathways. To determine the data quality for use din the risk assessment, the DQO team must assist the decision-maker to define the acceptable level of uncertainty for making site-specific decisions. To determine the quantity of data needed, the DQO team utilizes the established target cleanup level, previously collected data and variability, and the acceptable errors. The results of the DQO process are qualitative and quantitative statements that define the scope of risk assessment data to be collected to support a defensible site risk management decision.

  11. Exoatmospheric Kill Vehicle Quality Assurance and Reliability Assessment - Part A

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-09-08

    No. DODIG-2014-111 S E P T E M B E R 8 , 2 0 1 4 Exoatmospheric Kill Vehicle Quality Assurance and Reliability Assessment – Part A Report...REPORT TYPE 3. DATES COVERED 00-00-2014 to 00-00-2014 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE Exoatmospheric Kill Vehicle Quality Assurance and Reliability...Department of Defense F r a u d , W a s t e & A b u s e DODIG-2014-111 (Project No. D2013-DT0TAD-0005.000) │ i Results in Brief Exoatmospheric Kill Vehicle

  12. Science data quality assessment for the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shaw, Richard A.; Levine, Deborah; Axelrod, Timothy; Laher, Russ R.; Mannings, Vince G.

    2010-07-01

    LSST will have a Science Data Quality Assessment (SDQA) subsystem for the assessment of the data products that will be produced during the course of a 10 yr survey. The LSST will produce unprecedented volumes of astronomical data as it surveys the accessible sky every few nights. The SDQA subsystem will enable comparisons of the science data with expectations from prior experience and models, and with established requirements for the survey. While analogous systems have been built for previous large astronomical surveys, SDQA for LSST must meet a unique combination of challenges. Chief among them will be the extraordinary data rate and volume, which restricts the bulk of the quality computations to the automated processing stages, as revisiting the pixels for a post-facto evaluation is prohibitively expensive. The identification of appropriate scientific metrics is driven by the breadth of the expected science, the scope of the time-domain survey, the need to tap the widest possible pool of scientific expertise, and the historical tendency of new quality metrics to be crafted and refined as experience grows. Prior experience suggests that contemplative, off-line quality analyses are essential to distilling new automated quality metrics, so the SDQA architecture must support integrability with a variety of custom and community-based tools, and be flexible to embrace evolving QA demands. Finally, the time-domain nature of LSST means every exposure may be useful for some scientific purpose, so the model of quality thresholds must be sufficiently rich to reflect the quality demands of diverse science aims.

  13. Overview of the National Water-Quality Assessment Program

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Leahy, P.P.; Thompson, T.H.

    1994-01-01

    The Nation's water resources are the basis for life and our economic vitality. These resources support a complex web of human activities and fishery and wildlife needs that depend upon clean water. Demands for good-quality water for drinking, recreation, farming, and industry are rising, and as a result, the American public is concerned about the condition and sustainability of our water resources. The American public is asking: Is it safe to swim in and drink water from our rivers or lakes? Can we eat the fish that come from them? Is our ground water polluted? Is water quality degrading with time, and if so, why? Has all the money we've spent to clean up our waters, done any good? The U.S. Geological Survey's National Water-Quality Assessment (NAWQA) Program was designed to provide information that will help answer these questions. NAWQA is designed to assess historical, current, and future water-quality conditions in representative river basins and aquifers nationwide. One of the primary objectives of the program is to describe relations between natural factors, human activities, and water-quality conditions and to define those factors that most affect water quality in different parts of the Nation. The linkage of water quality to environmental processes is of fundamental importance to water-resource managers, planners, and policy makers. It provides a strong and unbiased basis for better decisionmaking by those responsible for making decisions that affect our water resources, including the United States Congress, Federal, State, and local agencies, environmental groups, and industry. Information from the NAWQA Program also will be useful for guiding research, monitoring, and regulatory activities in cost effective ways.

  14. Automatic welding quality classification for the spot welding based on the Hopfield associative memory neural network and Chernoff face description of the electrode displacement signal features

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Hongjie; Hou, Yanyan; Zhao, Jian; Wang, Lijing; Xi, Tao; Li, Yafeng

    2017-02-01

    To develop an automatic welding quality classification method for the spot welding based on the Chernoff face image created by the electrode displacement signal features, an effective pattern feature extraction method was proposed by which the Chernoff face images were converted to binary ones, and each binary image could be characterized by a binary matrix. According to expression categories on the Chernoff face images, welding quality was classified into five levels and each level just corresponded to a kind of expression. The Hopfield associative memory neural network was used to build a welding quality classifier in which the pattern feature matrices of some weld samples with different welding quality levels were remembered as the stable states. When the pattern feature matrix of a test weld is input into the classifier, it can be converged to the most similar stable state through associative memory, thus, welding quality corresponding to this finally locked stable state can represent the welding quality of the test weld. The classification performance test results show that the proposed method significantly improves the applicability and efficiency of the Chernoff faces technique for spot welding quality evaluation and it is feasible, effective and reliable.

  15. Slider-adjusted softcopy ruler for calibrated image quality assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jin, Elaine W.; Keelan, Brian W.

    2010-01-01

    ISO 20462 part 3 standardized the hardcopy quality ruler and a softcopy quality ruler based on a binary sort approach involving paired comparisons. The new softcopy ruler method described here utilizes a slider bar to match the quality of the ruler to that of the test image, which is found to substantially reduce the time required per assessment (30 to 15.5 s), with only a modest loss of precision (standard deviations of 2.5 to 2.9 just noticeable differences). In combination, these metrics implied a 20% improvement in the standard error of the mean achievable in a fixed amount of judging time. Ruler images calibrated against the standard quality scale of ISO 20462 are generated for 21 scenes, at 31 quality levels each, achieved through variation of sharpness, while other attributes are held near their preferred positions. The images are bundled with documentation and a MATLAB source code for a graphical user interface that administers softcopy ruler experiments, and these materials are donated to the International Imaging Industry Association for distribution. In conjunction with a specified large flat panel display, these materials should enable users to conduct softcopy quality ruler experiments with minimum effort, and should reduce the barriers to performing calibrated psychophysical measurements.

  16. [The objective assessment of the quality of oral health care and development of quality indicators].

    PubMed

    Pinke, Ildikó; Paulik, Edit; Kivovics, Péter; Segatto, Emil; Nagy, Katalin

    2011-12-01

    Public health care administration and decision-makers need appropriate tools and information to assess and monitor oral health needs and improve the performance of the oral health system. The aim of the article is to introduce the available methods of measurement of the quality of service, to give a brief summary considering the role of quality indicators in domestic and international sources and the European indicator project (EGOHID) and to introduce ICDAS (International Caries Detection and Assessment System), the method used for clinical examinations. The clinical indicators - that are produced from data gained from the questionnaires and screenings--provide an opportunity to improve and develop quality. Quality indicators are objective measure of the process or outcome of patient care. The 40 indicators were created by the experts of EGOHID program which are described in four categories. Part A is indicators for monitoring the oral health of children and adolescents, Part B is in general population, Part C is indicators for monitoring the oral health systems, Part D concerns indicators for monitoring the oral health quality of life. The purpose of developing public health care and--within it--dental care is the effective use of resources and besides it, reaching the popular level of health gain for which it is a necessary tool when forming and continuously developing the quality approach of providers.

  17. Data quality objectives for two risk assessments at Hanford

    SciTech Connect

    Lane, N.K.; Clark, S.W.; Tranbarger, R.K.; Roeck, F.V.

    1996-12-31

    The opportunity for innovative thinking prevails at the US Department of Energy`s Hanford Site in southeastern Washington state. Two projects, in particular, challenged risk assessment staff. They are: (1) a combined Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA)/Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) risk assessment, and (2) developing a risk assessment for a mixed-waste disposal facility. The combined CERCLA/RCRA risk assessment involved establishing data quality objectives (DQO) either to meet clean closure for a RCRA treatment, storage and/or disposal facility (TSD) or (if the former was not possible) to conform to goals established for industrial land use for Hanford Past-Practice Strategy (HPPS) sites. Radionuclide analysis was reduced by 60 percent through the DQO process.

  18. Validation of an image-based technique to assess the perceptual quality of clinical chest radiographs with an observer study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, Yuan; Choudhury, Kingshuk R.; McAdams, H. Page; Foos, David H.; Samei, Ehsan

    2014-03-01

    We previously proposed a novel image-based quality assessment technique1 to assess the perceptual quality of clinical chest radiographs. In this paper, an observer study was designed and conducted to systematically validate this technique. Ten metrics were involved in the observer study, i.e., lung grey level, lung detail, lung noise, riblung contrast, rib sharpness, mediastinum detail, mediastinum noise, mediastinum alignment, subdiaphragm-lung contrast, and subdiaphragm area. For each metric, three tasks were successively presented to the observers. In each task, six ROI images were randomly presented in a row and observers were asked to rank the images only based on a designated quality and disregard the other qualities. A range slider on the top of the images was used for observers to indicate the acceptable range based on the corresponding perceptual attribute. Five boardcertificated radiologists from Duke participated in this observer study on a DICOM calibrated diagnostic display workstation and under low ambient lighting conditions. The observer data were analyzed in terms of the correlations between the observer ranking orders and the algorithmic ranking orders. Based on the collected acceptable ranges, quality consistency ranges were statistically derived. The observer study showed that, for each metric, the averaged ranking orders of the participated observers were strongly correlated with the algorithmic orders. For the lung grey level, the observer ranking orders completely accorded with the algorithmic ranking orders. The quality consistency ranges derived from this observer study were close to these derived from our previous study. The observer study indicates that the proposed image-based quality assessment technique provides a robust reflection of the perceptual image quality of the clinical chest radiographs. The derived quality consistency ranges can be used to automatically predict the acceptability of a clinical chest radiograph.

  19. Assessment of quality of life in patients with knee osteoarthritis

    PubMed Central

    Kawano, Marcio Massao; Araújo, Ivan Luis Andrade; Castro, Martha Cavalcante; Matos, Marcos Almeida

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT OBJECTIVE : To assess the quality of life of knee osteoarthritis patients using the SF-36 questionnaire METHODS : Cross-sec-tional study with 93 knee osteoarthritis patients. The sample was categorized according to Ahlbӓck score. All individuals were interviewed with the SF-36 questionnaire RESULTS : The main finding of the study is related to the association of edu-cation level with the functional capacity, functional limitation and pain. Patients with higher education level had better functional capacity when they were compared to patients with basic level of education CONCLUSION : Individuals with osteoarthritis have a low perception of their quality of life in functional capacity, functional limitation and pain. There is a strong association between low level of education and low perception of quality of life. Level of Evidence IV, Clinical Case Series. PMID:27057143

  20. Fractal analysis for reduced reference image quality assessment.

    PubMed

    Xu, Yong; Liu, Delei; Quan, Yuhui; Le Callet, Patrick

    2015-07-01

    In this paper, multifractal analysis is adapted to reduced-reference image quality assessment (RR-IQA). A novel RR-QA approach is proposed, which measures the difference of spatial arrangement between the reference image and the distorted image in terms of spatial regularity measured by fractal dimension. An image is first expressed in Log-Gabor domain. Then, fractal dimensions are computed on each Log-Gabor subband and concatenated as a feature vector. Finally, the extracted features are pooled as the quality score of the distorted image using l1 distance. Compared with existing approaches, the proposed method measures image quality from the perspective of the spatial distribution of image patterns. The proposed method was evaluated on seven public benchmark data sets. Experimental results have demonstrated the excellent performance of the proposed method in comparison with state-of-the-art approaches.

  1. Air quality monitoring in NIS (SERBIA) and health impact assessment.

    PubMed

    Nikic, Dragana; Bogdanovic, Dragan; Nikolic, Maja; Stankovic, Aleksandra; Zivkovic, Nenad; Djordjevic, Amelija

    2009-11-01

    The aim of this study is to indicate the significance of air quality monitoring and to determine the air quality fields for the assessment of air pollution health effects, with special attention to risk population. Radial basis function network was used for air quality index mapping. Between 1991 and 2005, on the territory of Nis, several epidemiological studies were performed on risk groups (pre-school children, school children, pregnant women and persons older than 65). The total number of subjects was 5837. The exposed group comprised individuals living in the areas with unhealthy AQI, while the control group comprised individuals living in city areas with good or moderate AQI. It was determined that even relatively low levels of air pollution had impact on respiratory system and the occurrence of anaemia, allergy and skin symptoms.

  2. Assessing the Quality of PhD Dissertations. A Survey of External Committee Members

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kyvik, Svein; Thune, Taran

    2015-01-01

    This article reports on a study of the quality assessment of doctoral dissertations, and asks whether examiner characteristics influence assessment of research quality in PhD dissertations. Utilising a multi-dimensional concept of quality of PhD dissertations, we look at differences in assessment of research quality, and particularly test whether…

  3. 42 CFR 460.132 - Quality assessment and performance improvement plan.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ...-INCLUSIVE CARE FOR THE ELDERLY (PACE) Quality Assessment and Performance Improvement § 460.132 Quality assessment and performance improvement plan. (a) Basic rule. A PACE organization must have a written quality... 42 Public Health 4 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Quality assessment and performance improvement...

  4. QUality Assessment of System Architectures and their Requirements (QUASAR)

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2010-05-18

    2010 Carnegie Mellon University QUality Assessment of System Architectures and their Requirements ( QUASAR ) DoD and NDIA System-of-Systems...Architectures and their Requirements ( QUASAR ) 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER 5b. GRANT NUMBER 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT NUMBER 6. AUTHOR(S) 5d. PROJECT NUMBER 5e...Prescribed by ANSI Std Z39-18 2 QUASAR Version 3.1, 1 Hour Overview Donald Firesmith, 18 May 2010 © 2010 Carnegie Mellon University Topics History

  5. National Water-Quality Assessment (NAWQA) Area-Characterization Toolbox

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Price, Curtis

    2010-01-01

    This is release 1.0 of the National Water-Quality Assessment (NAWQA) Area-Characterization Toolbox. These tools are designed to be accessed using ArcGIS Desktop software (versions 9.3 and 9.3.1). The toolbox is composed of a collection of custom tools that implement geographic information system (GIS) techniques used by the NAWQA Program to characterize aquifer areas, drainage basins, and sampled wells.

  6. Stream Quality Assessment on Military Training Grounds Near Waverly, Tennessee

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2009-07-01

    evaluate and minimize the potential impacts of training exercises or land-management techniques on natural resources. Benthic macro in vertebra tes are...sampling benthic macroin vertebra tes as part of their statewide stream quality assessment programs (Maryland Department of Natural Resources. 2003; West...large rocks, logs and woody debris, and undercut banks) as refugia for macroinvertebrates and fish . 2) Embeddedness—The depth that rocks or logs are

  7. A quality assessment tool for markup-based clinical guidelines.

    PubMed

    Shalom, Erez; Shahar, Yuval; Taieb-Maimon, Meirav; Lunenfeld, Eitan

    2008-11-06

    We introduce a tool for quality assessment of procedural and declarative knowledge. We developed this tool for evaluating the specification of mark-up-based clinical GLs. Using this graphical tool, the expert physician and knowledge engineer collaborate to perform scoring, using pre-defined scoring scale, each of the knowledge roles of the mark-ups, comparing it to a gold standard. The tool enables scoring the mark-ups simultaneously at different sites by different users at different locations.

  8. Independent Software Quality Assessment (ISQA) Services: Makes Dollars and Sense

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2006-05-04

    1 Independent Software Quality Assessment ( ISQA ) Services: Makes Dollars and Sense Presented to the Systems & Software Technology Conference Salt... ISQA ? – What is NOT ISQA • Why? – Software Costs – Benefits of ISQA – ISQA Services • When? – Throughout Life Cycle – Proven Examples • How...advanced technology to meet current needs. • Implement SQA through our ISQA Team – Dedicated Cadre of computer scientists/engineers with access to

  9. Assessment of ecological quality of coastal lagoons with a combination of phytobenthic and water quality indices.

    PubMed

    Christia, Chrysoula; Giordani, Gianmarco; Papastergiadou, Eva

    2014-09-15

    Coastal lagoons are ecotones between continents and the sea. Coastal lagoons of Western Greece, subjected to different human pressures, were classified into four different types based on their hydromorphological characteristics and monitored over a three year period for their biotic and abiotic features. Six ecological indices based on water quality parameters (TSI-Chl-a, TSI-TP, TRIX), benthic macrophytes (E-MaQI, EEI-c) and an integrated index TWQI, were applied to assess the ecological status of studied lagoons under real conditions. The trophic status ranged from oligotrophic to hypertrophic according to the index applied. The ecological quality of transitional water ecosystems can be better assessed by using indices based on benthic macrophytes as changes in abundance and diversity of sensitive and tolerant species are the first evidence of incoming eutrophication. The multi-parametric index TWQI can be considered appropriate for the ecological assessment of these ecosystems due to its robustness and the simple application procedure.

  10. Quality control and quality assurance plan for bridge channel-stability assessments in Massachusetts

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Parker, Gene W.; Pinson, Harlow

    1993-01-01

    A quality control and quality assurance plan has been implemented as part of the Massachusetts bridge scour and channel-stability assessment program. This program is being conducted by the U.S. Geological Survey, Massachusetts-Rhode Island District, in cooperation with the Massachusetts Highway Department. Project personnel training, data-integrity verification, and new data-management technologies are being utilized in the channel-stability assessment process to improve current data-collection and management techniques. An automated data-collection procedure has been implemented to standardize channel-stability assessments on a regular basis within the State. An object-oriented data structure and new image management tools are used to produce a data base enabling management of multiple data object classes. Data will be reviewed by assessors and data base managers before being merged into a master bridge-scour data base, which includes automated data-verification routines.

  11. The rationale for and use of assessment frameworks: improving assessment and reporting quality in medical education.

    PubMed

    Pearce, Jacob; Edwards, Daniel; Fraillon, Julian; Coates, Hamish; Canny, Benedict J; Wilkinson, David

    2015-06-01

    An assessment framework provides a structured conceptual map of the learning outcomes of a programme of study along with details of how achievement of the outcomes can be measured. The rationale for using frameworks to underpin the targeting of essential content components is especially relevant for the medical education community. Frameworks have the capacity to improve validity and reliability in assessment, allowing test developers to more easily create robust assessment instruments. The framework used by the Australian Medical Assessment Collaboration (AMAC) is an interesting and relevant case study for the international community as it draws and builds on established processes in higher education assessment. The AMAC experience offers an insight into important considerations for designing assessment frameworks and implementing frameworks in differing contexts. There are lessons which have the potential to improve assessment and reporting practice and quality in not only medical education, but in other domains of assessment. Prior to implementing any programme of assessment, the framework considerations outlined here will hopefully improve the quality of assessment and reporting practice by making implicit assumptions explicit, and allowing more critical reflection and evaluation throughout assessment processes.

  12. Health impact assessment of quality wine production in Hungary.

    PubMed

    Adám, Balázs; Molnár, Agnes; Bárdos, Helga; Adány, Róza

    2009-12-01

    Alcohol-related health outcomes show strikingly high incidence in Hungary. The effects of alcohol consumption are influenced not only by the quantity, but also the quality of drinks; therefore, wine production can have an important effect on public health outcomes. Nevertheless, the Hungarian wine sector faces several vital problems and challenges influenced by the country's accession to the European Union and by the need for restructuring. A comprehensive health impact assessment (HIA) based on the evaluation of the Hungarian legislation related to the wine sector has been carried out, aiming to assess the impact of the production of quality wine versus that of table wine, using a range of public health and epidemiological research methods and data as well as HIA guidelines. The study finds that the toxic effects of alcohol can be reduced with an increased supply of quality wine and with decreased overall consumption due to higher cost, although this might drive some people to seek illegal sources. Quality wine production allows for improved use of land, creates employment opportunities and increases the incomes of producers and local communities; however, capital-scarce producers unable to manage restructuring may lose their source of subsistence. The supply of quality wine can promote social relations, contribute to a healthy lifestyle and reduce criminality related to alcohol's influence and adulteration. In general, the production and supply of quality wine can have an overall positive impact on health. Nevertheless, because of the several possible negative effects expected without purposeful restructuring, recommendations for the maximization of favourable outcomes and suggestions for monitoring the success of the analysis have been provided.

  13. Automatic Prostate Tracking and Motion Assessment in Volumetric Modulated Arc Therapy With an Electronic Portal Imaging Device

    SciTech Connect

    Azcona, Juan Diego; Li, Ruijiang; Mok, Edward; Hancock, Steven; Xing, Lei

    2013-07-15

    Purpose: To assess the prostate intrafraction motion in volumetric modulated arc therapy treatments using cine megavoltage (MV) images acquired with an electronic portal imaging device (EPID). Methods and Materials: Ten prostate cancer patients were treated with volumetric modulated arc therapy using a Varian TrueBeam linear accelerator equipped with an EPID for acquiring cine MV images during treatment. Cine MV images acquisition was scheduled for single or multiple treatment fractions (between 1 and 8). A novel automatic fiducial detection algorithm that can handle irregular multileaf collimator apertures, field edges, fast leaf and gantry movement, and MV image noise and artifacts in patient anatomy was used. All sets of images (approximately 25,000 images in total) were analyzed to measure the positioning accuracy of implanted fiducial markers and assess the prostate movement. Results: Prostate motion can vary greatly in magnitude among different patients. Different motion patterns were identified, showing its unpredictability. The mean displacement and standard deviation of the intrafraction motion was generally less than 2.0 ± 2.0 mm in each of the spatial directions. In certain patients, however, the percentage of the treatment time in which the prostate is displaced more than 5 mm from its planned position in at least 1 spatial direction was 10% or more. The maximum prostate displacement observed was 13.3 mm. Conclusion: Prostate tracking and motion assessment was performed with MV imaging and an EPID. The amount of prostate motion observed suggests that patients will benefit from its real-time monitoring. Megavoltage imaging can provide the basis for real-time prostate tracking using conventional linear accelerators.

  14. Assessing the quality of healthcare provided to children.

    PubMed Central

    Mangione-Smith, R; McGlynn, E A

    1998-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To present a conceptual framework for evaluating quality of care for children and adolescents, summarize the key issues related to developing measures to assess pediatric quality of care, examine some existing measures, and present evidence about their current level of performance. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Assessing the quality of care for children poses many challenges not encountered when making these measurements in the adult population. Children and adolescents (from this point forward referred to collectively as children unless differentiation is necessary) differ from adults in two clinically important ways (Jameson and Wehr 1993): (1) their normal developmental trajectory is characterized by change, and (2) they have differential morbidity. These factors contribute to the limitations encountered when developing measures to assess the quality of care for children. The movement of a child through the various stages of development makes it difficult to establish what constitutes a "normal" outcome and by extension what constitutes a poor outcome. Additionally, salient developmental outcomes that result from poor quality of care may not be observed for several years. This implies that poor outcomes may be observed when the child is receiving care from a delivery system other than the one that provided the low-quality care. Attributing the suboptimal outcome to the new delivery system would be inappropriate. Differential morbidity refers to the fact that the type, prevalence, and severity of illness experienced by children is measurably different from that observed in adults. Most children experience numerous self-limited illness of mild severity. A minority of children suffer from markedly more severe diseases. Thus, condition-specific measures in children are problematic to implement for routine assessments because of the extremely low incidence and prevalence of most severe pediatric diseases (Halfon 1996). However, children with these conditions are

  15. Subjective video quality assessment methods for recognition tasks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ford, Carolyn G.; McFarland, Mark A.; Stange, Irena W.

    2009-02-01

    To develop accurate objective measurements (models) for video quality assessment, subjective data is traditionally collected via human subject testing. The ITU has a series of Recommendations that address methodology for performing subjective tests in a rigorous manner. These methods are targeted at the entertainment application of video. However, video is often used for many applications outside of the entertainment sector, and generally this class of video is used to perform a specific task. Examples of these applications include security, public safety, remote command and control, and sign language. For these applications, video is used to recognize objects, people or events. The existing methods, developed to assess a person's perceptual opinion of quality, are not appropriate for task-based video. The Institute for Telecommunication Sciences, under a program from the Department of Homeland Security and the National Institute for Standards and Technology's Office of Law Enforcement, has developed a subjective test method to determine a person's ability to perform recognition tasks using video, thereby rating the quality according to the usefulness of the video quality within its application. This new method is presented, along with a discussion of two examples of subjective tests using this method.

  16. A cloud model-based approach for water quality assessment.

    PubMed

    Wang, Dong; Liu, Dengfeng; Ding, Hao; Singh, Vijay P; Wang, Yuankun; Zeng, Xiankui; Wu, Jichun; Wang, Lachun

    2016-07-01

    Water quality assessment entails essentially a multi-criteria decision-making process accounting for qualitative and quantitative uncertainties and their transformation. Considering uncertainties of randomness and fuzziness in water quality evaluation, a cloud model-based assessment approach is proposed. The cognitive cloud model, derived from information science, can realize the transformation between qualitative concept and quantitative data, based on probability and statistics and fuzzy set theory. When applying the cloud model to practical assessment, three technical issues are considered before the development of a complete cloud model-based approach: (1) bilateral boundary formula with nonlinear boundary regression for parameter estimation, (2) hybrid entropy-analytic hierarchy process technique for calculation of weights, and (3) mean of repeated simulations for determining the degree of final certainty. The cloud model-based approach is tested by evaluating the eutrophication status of 12 typical lakes and reservoirs in China and comparing with other four methods, which are Scoring Index method, Variable Fuzzy Sets method, Hybrid Fuzzy and Optimal model, and Neural Networks method. The proposed approach yields information concerning membership for each water quality status which leads to the final status. The approach is found to be representative of other alternative methods and accurate.

  17. National water-quality assessment program : the Albemarle- Pamlico drainage

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lloyd, O.B.; Barnes, C.R.; Woodside, M.D.

    1991-01-01

    In 1991, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) began to implement a full-scale National Water-Quality Assessment (NAWQA) program. Long-term goals of the NAWQA program are to describe the status and trends in the quality of a large, representative part of the Nation's surface- and ground-water resources and to provide a sound, scientific understanding of the primary natural and human factors affecting the quality of these resources. In meeting these goals, the program will produce a wealth of water quality information that will be useful to policy makers and managers at the national, State, and local levels. Study-unit investigations constitute a major component of the NAWQA program, forming the principal building blocks on which national-level assessment activities are based. The 60 study-unit investigations that make up the program are hydrologic systems that include parts of most major river basins and aquifer systems. These study units cover areas of 1,200 to more than 65,000 square miles and incorporate about 60 to 70 percent of the Nation's water use and population served by public water supply. In 1991, the Albemarle-Pamlico drainage was among the first 20 NAWQA study units selected for study under the full-scale implementation plan. The Albemarle-Pamlico drainage study will examine the physical, chemical, and biological aspects of water quality issues in a coordinated investigation of surface water and ground water in the Albemarle-Pamlico drainage basin. The quantity and quality of discharge from the Albemarle-Pamlico drainage basin contribute to some water quality problems in the biologically sensitive waters of Albemarle and Pamlico Sounds. A retrospective analysis of existing water quality data will precede a 3-year period of intensive data-collection and analysis activities. The data resulting from this study and the improved understanding of important processes and issues in the upstream part of the study unit will enhance understanding of the quality of

  18. Assessing water quality trends in catchments with contrasting hydrological regimes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sherriff, Sophie C.; Shore, Mairead; Mellander, Per-Erik

    2016-04-01

    Environmental resources are under increasing pressure to simultaneously achieve social, economic and ecological aims. Increasing demand for food production, for example, has expanded and intensified agricultural systems globally. In turn, greater risks of diffuse pollutant delivery (suspended sediment (SS) and Phosphorus (P)) from land to water due to higher stocking densities, fertilisation rates and soil erodibility has been attributed to deterioration of chemical and ecological quality of aquatic ecosystems. Development of sustainable and resilient management strategies for agro-ecosystems must detect and consider the impact of land use disturbance on water quality over time. However, assessment of multiple monitoring sites over a region is challenged by hydro-climatic fluctuations and the propagation of events through catchments with contrasting hydrological regimes. Simple water quality metrics, for example, flow-weighted pollutant exports have potential to normalise the impact of catchment hydrology and better identify water quality fluctuations due to land use and short-term climate fluctuations. This paper assesses the utility of flow-weighted water quality metrics to evaluate periods and causes of critical pollutant transfer. Sub-hourly water quality (SS and P) and discharge data were collected from hydrometric monitoring stations at the outlets of five small (~10 km2) agricultural catchments in Ireland. Catchments possess contrasting land uses (predominantly grassland or arable) and soil drainage (poorly, moderately or well drained) characteristics. Flow-weighted water quality metrics were calculated and evaluated according to fluctuations in source pressure and rainfall. Flow-weighted water quality metrics successfully identified fluctuations in pollutant export which could be attributed to land use changes through the agricultural calendar, i.e., groundcover fluctuations. In particular, catchments with predominantly poor or moderate soil drainage

  19. Automated quality assessment in three-dimensional breast ultrasound images.

    PubMed

    Schwaab, Julia; Diez, Yago; Oliver, Arnau; Martí, Robert; van Zelst, Jan; Gubern-Mérida, Albert; Mourri, Ahmed Bensouda; Gregori, Johannes; Günther, Matthias

    2016-04-01

    Automated three-dimensional breast ultrasound (ABUS) is a valuable adjunct to x-ray mammography for breast cancer screening of women with dense breasts. High image quality is essential for proper diagnostics and computer-aided detection. We propose an automated image quality assessment system for ABUS images that detects artifacts at the time of acquisition. Therefore, we study three aspects that can corrupt ABUS images: the nipple position relative to the rest of the breast, the shadow caused by the nipple, and the shape of the breast contour on the image. Image processing and machine learning algorithms are combined to detect these artifacts based on 368 clinical ABUS images that have been rated manually by two experienced clinicians. At a specificity of 0.99, 55% of the images that were rated as low quality are detected by the proposed algorithms. The areas under the ROC curves of the single classifiers are 0.99 for the nipple position, 0.84 for the nipple shadow, and 0.89 for the breast contour shape. The proposed algorithms work fast and reliably, which makes them adequate for online evaluation of image quality during acquisition. The presented concept may be extended to further image modalities and quality aspects.

  20. Video quality assessment method motivated by human visual perception

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, Meiling; Jiang, Gangyi; Yu, Mei; Song, Yang; Peng, Zongju; Shao, Feng

    2016-11-01

    Research on video quality assessment (VQA) plays a crucial role in improving the efficiency of video coding and the performance of video processing. It is well acknowledged that the motion energy model generates motion energy responses in a middle temporal area by simulating the receptive field of neurons in V1 for the motion perception of the human visual system. Motivated by the biological evidence for the visual motion perception, a VQA method is proposed in this paper, which comprises the motion perception quality index and the spatial index. To be more specific, the motion energy model is applied to evaluate the temporal distortion severity of each frequency component generated from the difference of Gaussian filter bank, which produces the motion perception quality index, and the gradient similarity measure is used to evaluate the spatial distortion of the video sequence to get the spatial quality index. The experimental results of the LIVE, CSIQ, and IVP video databases demonstrate that the random forests regression technique trained by the generated quality indices is highly correspondent to human visual perception and has many significant improvements than comparable well-performing methods. The proposed method has higher consistency with subjective perception and higher generalization capability.

  1. Microphone array power ratio for quality assessment of reverberated speech

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berkun, Reuven; Cohen, Israel

    2015-12-01

    Speech signals in enclosed environments are often distorted by reverberation and noise. In speech communication systems with several randomly distributed microphones, involving a dynamic speaker and unknown source location, it is of great interest to monitor the perceived quality at each microphone and select the signal with the best quality. Most of existing approaches for quality estimation require prior information or a clean reference signal, which is unfortunately seldom available. In this paper, a practical non-intrusive method for quality assessment of reverberated speech signals is proposed. Using a statistical model of the reverberation process, we examine the energies as measured by unidirectional elements in a microphone array. By measuring the power ratio, we obtain a measure for the amount of reverberation in the received acoustic signals. This measure is then utilized to derive a blind estimation of the direct-to-reverberation energy ratio in the room. The proposed approach attains a simple, reliable, and robust quality measure, shown here through persuasive simulation results.

  2. Project Quality Rating by Experts and Practitioners: Experience with Preffi 2.0 as a Quality Assessment Instrument

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Molleman, Gerard R. M.; Peters, Louk W. H.; Hosman, Clemens M. H.; Kok, Gerjo J.; Oosterveld, Paul

    2006-01-01

    Preffi 2.0 is an evidence-based Dutch quality assessment instrument for health promotion interventions. It is mainly intended for both planning and assessing one's own projects but can also be used to assess other people's projects (external use). This article reports a study on the reliability of Preffi as an external quality assessment…

  3. Assessment of groundwater quality near the landfill site using the modified water quality index.

    PubMed

    Talalaj, Izabela A

    2014-06-01

    The purpose of this paper is to assess the groundwater quality near a landfill site using the modified water quality index. A total of 128 groundwater samples were analyzed for pH, electrical conductivity (EC), total organic carbon (TOC), polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH), Cd, Pb, Zn, Cu, Cr, and Hg. The analytical results have showed a decreasing trend in concentration for TOC, Cd, Pb, Hg, and Cu and an increasing one for pH, EC, and PAH. The modified water quality index, which was called landfill water pollution index (LWPI), was calculated to quantify the overall water quality near the landfill site. The analysis reveals that groundwater in piezometers close to the landfill is under a strong landfill impact. The LWPI in piezometers ranged from 0.52 to 98.25 with a mean value of 7.99. The LWPI in groundwater from the nearest house wells varied from 0.59 to 0.92. A LWPI value below 1 proves that analyzed water is not affected by the landfill. Results have shown that LWPI is an efficient method for assessing and communicating the information on the groundwater quality near the landfill.

  4. Soil bioassays as tools for sludge compost quality assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Domene, Xavier; Sola, Laura; Ramirez, Wilson; Alcaniz, Josep M.; Andres, Pilar

    2011-03-15

    Composting is a waste management technology that is becoming more widespread as a response to the increasing production of sewage sludge and the pressure for its reuse in soil. In this study, different bioassays (plant germination, earthworm survival, biomass and reproduction, and collembolan survival and reproduction) were assessed for their usefulness in the compost quality assessment. Compost samples, from two different composting plants, were taken along the composting process, which were characterized and submitted to bioassays (plant germination and collembolan and earthworm performance). Results from our study indicate that the noxious effects of some of the compost samples observed in bioassays are related to the low organic matter stability of composts and the enhanced release of decomposition endproducts, with the exception of earthworms, which are favored. Plant germination and collembolan reproduction inhibition was generally associated with uncomposted sludge, while earthworm total biomass and reproduction were enhanced by these materials. On the other hand, earthworm and collembolan survival were unaffected by the degree of composting of the wastes. However, this pattern was clear in one of the composting procedures assessed, but less in the other, where the release of decomposition endproducts was lower due to its higher stability, indicating the sensitivity and usefulness of bioassays for the quality assessment of composts.

  5. iDensity: an automatic Gabor filter-based algorithm for breast density assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gamdonkar, Ziba; Tay, Kevin; Ryder, Will; Brennan, Patrick C.; Mello-Thoms, Claudia

    2015-03-01

    Abstract Although many semi-automated and automated algorithms for breast density assessment have been recently proposed, none of these have been widely accepted. In this study a novel automated algorithm, named iDensity, inspired by the human visual system is proposed for classifying mammograms into four breast density categories corresponding to the Breast Imaging Reporting and Data System (BI-RADS). For each BI-RADS category 80 cases were taken from the normal volumes of the Digital Database for Screening Mammography (DDSM). For each case only the left medio-lateral oblique was utilized. After image calibration using the provided tables of each scanner in the DDSM, the pectoral muscle and background were removed. Images were filtered by a median filter and down sampled. Images were then filtered by a filter bank consisting of Gabor filters in six orientations and 3 scales, as well as a Gaussian filter. Three gray level histogram-based features and three second order statistics features were extracted from each filtered image. Using the extracted features, mammograms were separated initially separated into two groups, low or high density, then in a second stage, the low density group was subdivided into BI-RADS I or II, and the high density group into BI-RADS III or IV. The algorithm achieved a sensitivity of 95% and specificity of 94% in the first stage, sensitivity of 89% and specificity of 95% when classifying BIRADS I and II cases, and a sensitivity of 88% and 91% specificity when classifying BI-RADS III and IV.

  6. An unsupervised method for quality assessment of despeckling: an evaluation on COSMO-SkyMed data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aiazzi, B.; Alparone, L.; Argenti, F.; Baronti, S.; Bianchi, T.; Lapini, A.

    2011-11-01

    Goal of this paper is the development and evaluation of a fully automatic method for quality assessment of despeckled synthetic aperture radar (SAR) images. The rationale of the new approach is that any structural perturbation introduced by despeckling, e.g. a local bias of mean or the blur of a sharp edge or the suppression of a point target, may be regarded either as the introduction of a new structure or as the suppression of an existing one. Conversely, plain removal of random noise does not change structures in the image. Structures are identified as clusters in the scatterplot of original to filtered image. Ideal filtering should produce clusters all aligned along the main diagonal. In practice clusters are moved far from the diagonal. Clusters' centers are detected through the mean shift algorithm. A structural change feature is defined at each pixel from the position and population of off-diagonal cluster, according to Shannon's information theoretic concepts. Results on true SAR images (COSMO-SkyMed) will be presented. Bayesian estimators (LMMSE: liner minimum mean squared error: MAP: maximum a-posteriori probability) operating in the undecimated wavelet domain have been coupled with segment-based processing. Quality measurements of despeckled SAR images carried out by means of the proposed method highlight the benefits of segmented MAP filtering.

  7. Positional Accuracy Assessment of the Openstreetmap Buildings Layer Through Automatic Homologous Pairs Detection: the Method and a Case Study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brovelli, M. A.; Minghini, M.; Molinari, M. E.; Zamboni, G.

    2016-06-01

    OpenStreetMap (OSM) is currently the largest openly licensed collection of geospatial data. Being OSM increasingly exploited in a variety of applications, research has placed great attention on the assessment of its quality. This work focuses on assessing the quality of OSM buildings. While most of the studies available in literature are limited to the evaluation of OSM building completeness, this work proposes an original approach to assess the positional accuracy of OSM buildings based on comparison with a reference dataset. The comparison relies on a quasi-automated detection of homologous pairs on the two datasets. Based on the homologous pairs found, warping algorithms like e.g. affine transformations and multi-resolution splines can be applied to the OSM buildings to generate a new version having an optimal local match to the reference layer. A quality assessment of the OSM buildings of Milan Municipality (Northern Italy), having an area of about 180 km2, is then presented. After computing some measures of completeness, the algorithm based on homologous points is run using the building layer of the official vector cartography of Milan Municipality as the reference dataset. Approximately 100000 homologous points are found, which show a systematic translation of about 0.4 m on both the X and Y directions and a mean distance of about 0.8 m between the datasets. Besides its efficiency and high degree of automation, the algorithm generates a warped version of OSM buildings which, having by definition a closest match to the reference buildings, can be eventually integrated in the OSM database.

  8. Endorsing good quality assurance practices in molecular pathology: risks and recommendations for diagnostic laboratories and external quality assessment providers.

    PubMed

    Tembuyser, Lien; Dequeker, Elisabeth M C

    2016-01-01

    Quality assurance is an indispensable element in a molecular diagnostic laboratory. The ultimate goal is to warrant patient safety. Several risks that can compromise high quality procedures are at stake, from sample collection to the test performed by the laboratory, the reporting of test results to clinicians, and the organization of effective external quality assessment schemes. Quality assurance should therefore be safeguarded at each level and should imply a holistic multidisciplinary approach. This review aims to provide an overview of good quality assurance practices and discusses certain risks and recommendations to promote and improve quality assurance for both diagnostic laboratories and for external quality assessment providers. The number of molecular targets is continuously rising, and new technologies are evolving. As this poses challenges for clinical implementation and increases the demand for external quality assessment, the formation of an international association for improving quality assurance in molecular pathology is called for.

  9. Automatic Spiral Analysis for Objective Assessment of Motor Symptoms in Parkinson’s Disease

    PubMed Central

    Memedi, Mevludin; Sadikov, Aleksander; Groznik, Vida; Žabkar, Jure; Možina, Martin; Bergquist, Filip; Johansson, Anders; Haubenberger, Dietrich; Nyholm, Dag

    2015-01-01

    A challenge for the clinical management of advanced Parkinson’s disease (PD) patients is the emergence of fluctuations in motor performance, which represents a significant source of disability during activities of daily living of the patients. There is a lack of objective measurement of treatment effects for in-clinic and at-home use that can provide an overview of the treatment response. The objective of this paper was to develop a method for objective quantification of advanced PD motor symptoms related to off episodes and peak dose dyskinesia, using spiral data gathered by a touch screen telemetry device. More specifically, the aim was to objectively characterize motor symptoms (bradykinesia and dyskinesia), to help in automating the process of visual interpretation of movement anomalies in spirals as rated by movement disorder specialists. Digitized upper limb movement data of 65 advanced PD patients and 10 healthy (HE) subjects were recorded as they performed spiral drawing tasks on a touch screen device in their home environment settings. Several spatiotemporal features were extracted from the time series and used as inputs to machine learning methods. The methods were validated against ratings on animated spirals scored by four movement disorder specialists who visually assessed a set of kinematic features and the motor symptom. The ability of the method to discriminate between PD patients and HE subjects and the test-retest reliability of the computed scores were also evaluated. Computed scores correlated well with mean visual ratings of individual kinematic features. The best performing classifier (Multilayer Perceptron) classified the motor symptom (bradykinesia or dyskinesia) with an accuracy of 84% and area under the receiver operating characteristics curve of 0.86 in relation to visual classifications of the raters. In addition, the method provided high discriminating power when distinguishing between PD patients and HE subjects as well as had good

  10. Automatic Spiral Analysis for Objective Assessment of Motor Symptoms in Parkinson's Disease.

    PubMed

    Memedi, Mevludin; Sadikov, Aleksander; Groznik, Vida; Žabkar, Jure; Možina, Martin; Bergquist, Filip; Johansson, Anders; Haubenberger, Dietrich; Nyholm, Dag

    2015-09-17

    A challenge for the clinical management of advanced Parkinson's disease (PD) patients is the emergence of fluctuations in motor performance, which represents a significant source of disability during activities of daily living of the patients. There is a lack of objective measurement of treatment effects for in-clinic and at-home use that can provide an overview of the treatment response. The objective of this paper was to develop a method for objective quantification of advanced PD motor symptoms related to off episodes and peak dose dyskinesia, using spiral data gathered by a touch screen telemetry device. More specifically, the aim was to objectively characterize motor symptoms (bradykinesia and dyskinesia), to help in automating the process of visual interpretation of movement anomalies in spirals as rated by movement disorder specialists. Digitized upper limb movement data of 65 advanced PD patients and 10 healthy (HE) subjects were recorded as they performed spiral drawing tasks on a touch screen device in their home environment settings. Several spatiotemporal features were extracted from the time series and used as inputs to machine learning methods. The methods were validated against ratings on animated spirals scored by four movement disorder specialists who visually assessed a set of kinematic features and the motor symptom. The ability of the method to discriminate between PD patients and HE subjects and the test-retest reliability of the computed scores were also evaluated. Computed scores correlated well with mean visual ratings of individual kinematic features. The best performing classifier (Multilayer Perceptron) classified the motor symptom (bradykinesia or dyskinesia) with an accuracy of 84% and area under the receiver operating characteristics curve of 0.86 in relation to visual classifications of the raters. In addition, the method provided high discriminating power when distinguishing between PD patients and HE subjects as well as had good

  11. A review of image quality assessment methods with application to computational photography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maître, Henri

    2015-12-01

    Image quality assessment has been of major importance for several domains of the industry of image as for instance restoration or communication and coding. New application fields are opening today with the increase of embedded power in the camera and the emergence of computational photography: automatic tuning, image selection, image fusion, image data-base building, etc. We review the literature of image quality evaluation. We pay attention to the very different underlying hypotheses and results of the existing methods to approach the problem. We explain why they differ and for which applications they may be beneficial. We also underline their limits, especially for a possible use in the novel domain of computational photography. Being developed to address different objectives, they propose answers on different aspects, which make them sometimes complementary. However, they all remain limited in their capability to challenge the human expert, the said or unsaid ultimate goal. We consider the methods which are based on retrieving the parameters of a signal, mostly in spectral analysis; then we explore the more global methods to qualify the image quality in terms of noticeable defects or degradation as popular in the compression domain; in a third field the image acquisition process is considered as a channel between the source and the receiver, allowing to use the tools of the information theory and to qualify the system in terms of entropy and information capacity. However, these different approaches hardly attack the most difficult part of the task which is to measure the quality of the photography in terms of aesthetic properties. To help in addressing this problem, in between Philosophy, Biology and Psychology, we propose a brief review of the literature which addresses the problematic of qualifying Beauty, present the attempts to adapt these concepts to visual patterns and initiate a reflection on what could be done in the field of photography.

  12. Quality of evidence must guide risk assessment of asbestos.

    PubMed

    Lenters, Virissa; Burdorf, Alex; Vermeulen, Roel; Stayner, Leslie; Heederik, Dick

    2012-10-01

    In 2011, we reported on the sensitivity of lung cancer potency estimates for asbestos to the quality of the exposure assessment component of underlying evidence. Both this meta-analysis and a separate reassessment of standards published by the Health Council of the Netherlands (Gezondheidsraad) have been commented on by Berman and Case. A criticism is that we used a truncated data set. We incrementally excluded poorer-quality studies to evaluate trends in meta-analyzed lung cancer potency estimates (meta-K (L) values). This was one of three analysis approaches we presented. The other two used the full set of studies: a meta-analysis stratified by covariates and dichotomized by poorer and better exposure assessment aspects; and a meta-regression modeling both asbestos fiber type and these covariates. They also state that our results are not robust to removal of one study. We disagree with this claim and present additional sensitivity analyses underpinning our earlier conclusion that inclusion of studies with higher-quality asbestos-exposure assessment yield higher meta-estimates of the lung cancer risk per unit of exposure. We reiterate that potency differences for predominantly chrysotile- versus amphibole-asbestos-exposed cohorts are difficult to ascertain when meta-analyses are restricted to studies with fewer exposure assessment limitations. We strongly argue that the existence of any uncertainty related to potency issues should not hamper the development of appropriate evidence-based guidelines and stringent policies in order to protect the public from hazardous environmental and occupational exposures.

  13. An assessment of drinking-water quality post-Haiyan

    PubMed Central

    Anarna, Maria Sonabel; Fernando, Arturo

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Access to safe drinking-water is one of the most important public health concerns in an emergency setting. This descriptive study reports on an assessment of water quality in drinking-water supply systems in areas affected by Typhoon Haiyan immediately following and 10 months after the typhoon. Methods Water quality testing and risk assessments of the drinking-water systems were conducted three weeks and 10 months post-Haiyan. Portable test kits were used to determine the presence of Escherichia coli and the level of residual chlorine in water samples. The level of risk was fed back to the water operators for their action. Results Of the 121 water samples collected three weeks post-Haiyan, 44% were contaminated, while 65% (244/373) of samples were found positive for E. coli 10 months post-Haiyan. For the three components of drinking-water systems – source, storage and distribution – the proportions of contaminated systems were 70%, 67% and 57%, respectively, 10 months after Haiyan. Discussion Vulnerability to faecal contamination was attributed to weak water safety programmes in the drinking-water supply systems. Poor water quality can be prevented or reduced by developing and implementing a water safety plan for the systems. This, in turn, will help prevent waterborne disease outbreaks caused by contaminated water post-disaster. PMID:26767136

  14. Subjective Quality Assessment of Underwater Video for Scientific Applications

    PubMed Central

    Moreno-Roldán, José-Miguel; Luque-Nieto, Miguel-Ángel; Poncela, Javier; Díaz-del-Río, Víctor; Otero, Pablo

    2015-01-01

    Underwater video services could be a key application in the better scientific knowledge of the vast oceanic resources in our planet. However, limitations in the capacity of current available technology for underwater networks (UWSNs) raise the question of the feasibility of these services. When transmitting video, the main constraints are the limited bandwidth and the high propagation delays. At the same time the service performance depends on the needs of the target group. This paper considers the problems of estimations for the Mean Opinion Score (a standard quality measure) in UWSNs based on objective methods and addresses the topic of quality assessment in potential underwater video services from a subjective point of view. The experimental design and the results of a test planned according standardized psychometric methods are presented. The subjects used in the quality assessment test were ocean scientists. Video sequences were recorded in actual exploration expeditions and were processed to simulate conditions similar to those that might be found in UWSNs. Our experimental results show how videos are considered to be useful for scientific purposes even in very low bitrate conditions. PMID:26694400

  15. A Novel Image Quality Assessment with Globally and Locally Consilient Visual Quality Perception.

    PubMed

    Bae, Sung-Ho; Kim, Munchurl

    2016-03-25

    Computational models for image quality assessment (IQA) have been developed by exploring effective features that are consistent with the characteristics of human visual system (HVS) for visual quality perception. In this paper, we firstly reveal that many existing features used in computational IQA methods can hardly characterize visual quality perception for local image characteristics and various distortion types. To solve this problem, we propose a new IQA method, called Structural Contrast-Quality Index (SC-QI) by adopting a structural contrast index (SCI) which can well characterize local and global visual quality perceptions for various image characteristics with structural-distortion types. In addition to SCI, we devise some other perceptually important features for our SC-QI that can effectively reflect the characteristics of HVS for contrast sensitivity and chrominance component variation. Furthermore, we develop a modified SC-QI, called structural contrast distortion metric (SC-DM) which inherits desirable mathematical properties of valid distance metricability and quasi-convexity. So, it can effectively be used as a distance metric for image quality optimization problems. Extensive experimental results show that both SC-QI and SC-DM can very well characterize the HVS's properties of visual quality perception for local image characteristics and various distortion types, which is a distinctive merit of our methods compared to other IQA methods. As a result, both SC-QI and SC-DM have better performances with a strong consilience of global and local visual quality perception as well as with much lower computation complexity, compared to state-of-the-art IQA methods. The MATLAB source codes of the proposed SC-QI and SC-DM are publicly available online at https://sites.google.com/site/sunghobaecv/iqa.

  16. A Novel Image Quality Assessment With Globally and Locally Consilient Visual Quality Perception.

    PubMed

    Bae, Sung-Ho; Kim, Munchurl

    2016-05-01

    Computational models for image quality assessment (IQA) have been developed by exploring effective features that are consistent with the characteristics of a human visual system (HVS) for visual quality perception. In this paper, we first reveal that many existing features used in computational IQA methods can hardly characterize visual quality perception for local image characteristics and various distortion types. To solve this problem, we propose a new IQA method, called the structural contrast-quality index (SC-QI), by adopting a structural contrast index (SCI), which can well characterize local and global visual quality perceptions for various image characteristics with structural-distortion types. In addition to SCI, we devise some other perceptually important features for our SC-QI that can effectively reflect the characteristics of HVS for contrast sensitivity and chrominance component variation. Furthermore, we develop a modified SC-QI, called structural contrast distortion metric (SC-DM), which inherits desirable mathematical properties of valid distance metricability and quasi-convexity. So, it can effectively be used as a distance metric for image quality optimization problems. Extensive experimental results show that both SC-QI and SC-DM can very well characterize the HVS's properties of visual quality perception for local image characteristics and various distortion types, which is a distinctive merit of our methods compared with other IQA methods. As a result, both SC-QI and SC-DM have better performances with a strong consilience of global and local visual quality perception as well as with much lower computation complexity, compared with the state-of-the-art IQA methods. The MATLAB source codes of the proposed SC-QI and SC-DM are publicly available online at https://sites.google.com/site/sunghobaecv/iqa.

  17. Assessment of the assessment: evaluation of the model quality estimates in CASP10.

    PubMed

    Kryshtafovych, Andriy; Barbato, Alessandro; Fidelis, Krzysztof; Monastyrskyy, Bohdan; Schwede, Torsten; Tramontano, Anna

    2014-02-01

    The article presents an assessment of the ability of the thirty-seven model quality assessment (MQA) methods participating in CASP10 to provide an a priori estimation of the quality of structural models, and of the 67 tertiary structure prediction groups to provide confidence estimates for their predicted coordinates. The assessment of MQA predictors is based on the methods used in previous CASPs, such as correlation between the predicted and observed quality of the models (both at the global and local levels), accuracy of methods in distinguishing between good and bad models as well as good and bad regions within them, and ability to identify the best models in the decoy sets. Several numerical evaluations were used in our analysis for the first time, such as comparison of global and local quality predictors with reference (baseline) predictors and a ROC analysis of the predictors' ability to differentiate between the well and poorly modeled regions. For the evaluation of the reliability of self-assessment of the coordinate errors, we used the correlation between the predicted and observed deviations of the coordinates and a ROC analysis of correctly identified errors in the models. A modified two-stage procedure for testing MQA methods in CASP10 whereby a small number of models spanning the whole range of model accuracy was released first followed by the release of a larger number of models of more uniform quality, allowed a more thorough analysis of abilities and inabilities of different types of methods. Clustering methods were shown to have an advantage over the single- and quasi-single- model methods on the larger datasets. At the same time, the evaluation revealed that the size of the dataset has smaller influence on the global quality assessment scores (for both clustering and nonclustering methods), than its diversity. Narrowing the quality range of the assessed models caused significant decrease in accuracy of ranking for global quality predictors but

  18. Sparse feature fidelity for perceptual image quality assessment.

    PubMed

    Chang, Hua-Wen; Yang, Hua; Gan, Yong; Wang, Ming-Hui

    2013-10-01

    The prediction of an image quality metric (IQM) should be consistent with subjective human evaluation. As the human visual system (HVS) is critical to visual perception, modeling of the HVS is regarded as the most suitable way to achieve perceptual quality predictions. Sparse coding that is equivalent to independent component analysis (ICA) can provide a very good description of the receptive fields of simple cells in the primary visual cortex, which is the most important part of the HVS. With this inspiration, a quality metric called sparse feature fidelity (SFF) is proposed for full-reference image quality assessment (IQA) on the basis of transformation of images into sparse representations in the primary visual cortex. The proposed method is based on the sparse features that are acquired by a feature detector, which is trained on samples of natural images by an ICA algorithm. In addition, two strategies are designed to simulate the properties of the visual perception: 1) visual attention and 2) visual threshold. The computation of SFF has two stages: training and fidelity computation, in addition, the fidelity computation consists of two components: feature similarity and luminance correlation. The feature similarity measures the structure differences between the two images, whereas the luminance correlation evaluates brightness distortions. SFF also reflects the chromatic properties of the HVS, and it is very effective for color IQA. The experimental results on five image databases show that SFF has a better performance in matching subjective ratings compared with the leading IQMs.

  19. NMF-Based Image Quality Assessment Using Extreme Learning Machine.

    PubMed

    Wang, Shuigen; Deng, Chenwei; Lin, Weisi; Huang, Guang-Bin; Zhao, Baojun

    2017-01-01

    Numerous state-of-the-art perceptual image quality assessment (IQA) algorithms share a common two-stage process: distortion description followed by distortion effects pooling. As for the first stage, the distortion descriptors or measurements are expected to be effective representatives of human visual variations, while the second stage should well express the relationship among quality descriptors and the perceptual visual quality. However, most of the existing quality descriptors (e.g., luminance, contrast, and gradient) do not seem to be consistent with human perception, and the effects pooling is often done in ad-hoc ways. In this paper, we propose a novel full-reference IQA metric. It applies non-negative matrix factorization (NMF) to measure image degradations by making use of the parts-based representation of NMF. On the other hand, a new machine learning technique [extreme learning machine (ELM)] is employed to address the limitations of the existing pooling techniques. Compared with neural networks and support vector regression, ELM can achieve higher learning accuracy with faster learning speed. Extensive experimental results demonstrate that the proposed metric has better performance and lower computational complexity in comparison with the relevant state-of-the-art approaches.

  20. Assessment of groundwater quality status in Amini Island of Lakshadweep.

    PubMed

    Prasad, N B Narasimha; Mansoor, O A

    2005-01-01

    Amini Island is one of the 10 inhabited islands in Lakshadweep. Built on the ancient volcanic formations Lakshadweep is the the tiniest Union Territory of India. The major problem experienced by the islanders is the acute scarcity of fresh drinking water. Groundwater is the only source of fresh water and the availability of the same is very restricted due to peculiar hydrologic, geologic, geomorphic and demographic features. Hence, proper understanding of the groundwater quality, with reference to temporal and spatial variations, is very important to meet the increasing demand and also to formulate future plans for groundwater development. In this context, the assessment of groundwater quality status was carried out in Amini Island. All the available information on water quality, present groundwater usage pattern, etc. was collected and analyzed. Total hardness and salinity are found to be the most critical water quality parameters exceeding the permissible limits of drinking water standards. Spatial variation diagrams of salinity and hardness have been prepared for different seasons. It is also observed from these maps that the salinity and hardness are comparatively better on the lagoon side compared to the seaside. These maps also suggest that the salinity and the hardness problem is more in the southern tip compared to northern portion.

  1. Subjective quality assessment of numerically reconstructed compressed holograms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ahar, Ayyoub; Blinder, David; Bruylants, Tim; Schretter, Colas; Munteanu, Adrian; Schelkens, Peter

    2015-09-01

    Recently several papers reported efficient techniques to compress digital holograms. Typically, the rate-distortion performance of these solutions was evaluated by means of objective metrics such as Peak Signal-to-Noise Ratio (PSNR) or the Structural Similarity Index Measure (SSIM) by either evaluating the quality of the decoded hologram or the reconstructed compressed hologram. Seen the specific nature of holograms, it is relevant to question to what extend these metrics provide information on the effective visual quality of the reconstructed hologram. Given that today no holographic display technology is available that would allow for a proper subjective evaluation experiment, we propose in this paper a methodology that is based on assessing the quality of a reconstructed compressed hologram on a regular 2D display. In parallel, we also evaluate several coding engines, namely JPEG configured with the default perceptual quantization tables and with uniform quantization tables, JPEG 2000, JPEG 2000 extended with arbitrary packet decompositions and direction-adaptive filters and H.265/HEVC configured in intra-frame mode. The experimental results indicate that the perceived visual quality and the objective measures are well correlated. Moreover, also the superiority of the HEVC and the extended JPEG 2000 coding engines was confirmed, particularly at lower bitrates.

  2. Assessment of the chemical quality of drinking water in Cambodia.

    PubMed

    Feldman, Peter R; Rosenboom, Jan-Willem; Saray, Mao; Navuth, Peng; Samnang, Chea; Iddings, Steven

    2007-03-01

    Most water supply programmes in Cambodia have focused on providing access to bacteriologically safe water, an approach which has led to an increasing reliance on ground water, especially in rural areas. However, there have been very few data collected on the chemical quality of the nation's drinking water sources, and few water supply programmes have the capacity to assess chemical quality. The study was designed to address this data gap by conducting a low-cost, rapid assessment of drinking water sources nationwide to determine whether there were any chemicals of concern in Cambodian water supply sources. Results of the assessment confirm that there are several parameters of health and aesthetic concern; dissolved arsenic is the most significant. Elevated arsenic levels (some exceeding 500 microgl(-1)) were detected in aquifers of moderate depth in several highly populated areas, confirming that further investigation of the occurrence of arsenic contamination in Cambodia is warranted. Other chemicals of health concern include nitrate, nitrite, fluoride and manganese. Additionally, many ground water sources are negatively impacted by parameters of aesthetic concern, such as iron, manganese, hardness and total dissolved solids. Elevated levels of these parameters have caused consumers to reject newly installed water supplies, often in favour of surface water sources that are bacteriologically unsafe.

  3. Medical Imaging Image Quality Assessment with Monte Carlo Methods

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Michail, C. M.; Karpetas, G. E.; Fountos, G. P.; Kalyvas, N. I.; Martini, Niki; Koukou, Vaia; Valais, I. G.; Kandarakis, I. S.

    2015-09-01

    The aim of the present study was to assess image quality of PET scanners through a thin layer chromatography (TLC) plane source. The source was simulated using a previously validated Monte Carlo model. The model was developed by using the GATE MC package and reconstructed images obtained with the STIR software for tomographic image reconstruction, with cluster computing. The PET scanner simulated in this study was the GE DiscoveryST. A plane source consisted of a TLC plate, was simulated by a layer of silica gel on aluminum (Al) foil substrates, immersed in 18F-FDG bath solution (1MBq). Image quality was assessed in terms of the Modulation Transfer Function (MTF). MTF curves were estimated from transverse reconstructed images of the plane source. Images were reconstructed by the maximum likelihood estimation (MLE)-OSMAPOSL algorithm. OSMAPOSL reconstruction was assessed by using various subsets (3 to 21) and iterations (1 to 20), as well as by using various beta (hyper) parameter values. MTF values were found to increase up to the 12th iteration whereas remain almost constant thereafter. MTF improves by using lower beta values. The simulated PET evaluation method based on the TLC plane source can be also useful in research for the further development of PET and SPECT scanners though GATE simulations.

  4. Electronic Quality of Life Assessment Using Computer-Adaptive Testing

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Background Quality of life (QoL) questionnaires are desirable for clinical practice but can be time-consuming to administer and interpret, making their widespread adoption difficult. Objective Our aim was to assess the performance of the World Health Organization Quality of Life (WHOQOL)-100 questionnaire as four item banks to facilitate adaptive testing using simulated computer adaptive tests (CATs) for physical, psychological, social, and environmental QoL. Methods We used data from the UK WHOQOL-100 questionnaire (N=320) to calibrate item banks using item response theory, which included psychometric assessments of differential item functioning, local dependency, unidimensionality, and reliability. We simulated CATs to assess the number of items administered before prespecified levels of reliability was met. Results The item banks (40 items) all displayed good model fit (P>.01) and were unidimensional (fewer than 5% of t tests significant), reliable (Person Separation Index>.70), and free from differential item functioning (no significant analysis of variance interaction) or local dependency (residual correlations < +.20). When matched for reliability, the item banks were between 45% and 75% shorter than paper-based WHOQOL measures. Across the four domains, a high standard of reliability (alpha>.90) could be gained with a median of 9 items. Conclusions Using CAT, simulated assessments were as reliable as paper-based forms of the WHOQOL with a fraction of the number of items. These properties suggest that these item banks are suitable for computerized adaptive assessment. These item banks have the potential for international development using existing alternative language versions of the WHOQOL items. PMID:27694100

  5. Spatial assessment of water quality parameters in Jhelum city (Pakistan).

    PubMed

    Javed, Sadaf; Ali, Asad; Ullah, Saleem

    2017-03-01

    In this study, we assess the drinking water quality of Jhelum city. Two hundred and ninety-two drinking water samples were randomly collected in the study area. These samples were chemically analyzed for three key toxic (in excess) elements such as pH, total dissolved solids (TDS), and calcium. Geostatistical techniques such as variogram and kriging were used to investigate the spatial variations of these minerals across the city. The spatial structure for each element was found to be anisotropic, and thus, anisotropic variograms were used. The kriging predictions revealed significant concentrations of the above-stated elements at some locations in the study area. While comparing with the World Health Organization, United States Environmental Protection Agency, and Pakistan Environmental Protection Agency standards, the water samples were found to be unsatisfactory for drinking. We conclude that the drinking water in this region is of poor quality and needs proper treatment to make it palatable.

  6. Water quality assessment at Omerli Dam using remote sensing techniques.

    PubMed

    Alparslan, Erhan; Aydöner, Cihangir; Tufekci, Vildan; Tüfekci, Hüseyin

    2007-12-01

    Water quality at Omerli Dam, which is a vital potable water resource of Istanbul City, Turkey was assessed using the first four bands of Landsat 7-ETM satellite data, acquired in May 2001 and water quality parameters, such as chlorophyll-a, suspended solid matter, secchi disk and total phosphate measured at several measurement stations at Omerli Dam during satellite image acquisition time and archived at the Marine Pollution and Ecotoxicology laboratory of the Marmara Research Center, where this study was carried out. Establishing a relationship between this data, and the pixel reflectance values in the satellite image, chlorophyll-a, suspended solid matter, secchi disk and total phosphate maps were produced for the Omerli Dam.

  7. Objective assessment of sonographic: quality II acquisition information spectrum.

    PubMed

    Nguyen, Nghia Q; Abbey, Craig K; Insana, Michael F

    2013-04-01

    This paper describes a task-based, information-theoretic approach to the assessment of image quality in diagnostic sonography. We expand the Kullback-Leibler divergence metric J, which quantifies the diagnostic information contained within recorded radio-frequency echo signals, into a spatial-frequency integral comprised of two spectral components: one describes patient features for low-contrast diagnostic tasks and the other describes instrumentation properties. The latter quantity is the acquisition information spectrum (AIS), which measures the density of object information that an imaging system is able to transfer to the echo data at each spatial frequency. AIS is derived based on unique properties of acoustic scattering in tissues that generate object contrast. Predictions made by the J integral expression were validated through Monte Carlo studies using echo-signal data from simulated lesions. Our analysis predicts the diagnostic performance of any sonographic system at specific diagnostic tasks based on engineering properties of the instrument that constitute image quality.

  8. Metrics for assessing the quality of value sets in clinical quality measures

    PubMed Central

    Winnenburg, Rainer; Bodenreider, Olivier

    2013-01-01

    Objective: To assess the quality of value sets in clinical quality measures, both individually and as a population of value sets. Materials and methods: The concepts from a given value set are expected to be rooted by one or few ancestor concepts and the value set is expected to contain all the descendants of its root concepts and only these descendants. (1) We assessed the completeness and correctness of individual value sets by comparison to the extension derived from their roots. (2) We assessed the non-redundancy of value sets for the entire population of value sets (within a given code system) using the Jaccard similarity measure. Results: We demonstrated the utility of our approach on some cases of inconsistent value sets and produced a list of 58 potentially duplicate value sets from the current set of clinical quality measures for the 2014 Meaningful Use criteria. Conclusion: These metrics are easy to compute and provide compact indicators of the completeness, correctness, and non-redundancy of value sets. PMID:24551422

  9. 42 CFR 493.1239 - Standard: General laboratory systems quality assessment.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... ongoing mechanism to monitor, assess, and, when indicated, correct problems identified in the general... quality assessment must include a review of the effectiveness of corrective actions taken to...

  10. 42 CFR 493.1239 - Standard: General laboratory systems quality assessment.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... ongoing mechanism to monitor, assess, and, when indicated, correct problems identified in the general... quality assessment must include a review of the effectiveness of corrective actions taken to...

  11. Report of the Department of Energy, Office of Environmental Management, Quality Assessment Program, inorganic intercomparison study

    SciTech Connect

    Greenlaw, P.D.

    1996-07-01

    This report presents results from the soil inorganic analysis of the 44th set of environmental quality assessment samples, of the quality assessment program, that were received on or before June 3, 1996. The samples were analyzed for RCRA metals.

  12. External quality assessment for immunohistochemistry: experiences from NordiQC.

    PubMed

    Nielsen, S

    2015-07-01

    Immunohistochemistry (IHC) is applied routinely in surgical and clinical pathology, because it is essential for diagnosis and sub-classification of many neoplastic lesions. Despite its extensive use for more than 40 years, lack of standardization is a major problem; many factors during the pre-analytical, analytical and post-analytical phases affect the final results. Nordic immunohistochemical Quality Control (NordiQC) was established in 2003 to evaluate the inter-laboratory consistency of IHC, focusing mainly on the analytical part. More than 26,000 IHC slides have been evaluated during the period 2003-2013; 15 - 300 laboratories have participated in each assessment. Overall, 71% of the staining results assessed have been evaluated as sufficient for diagnostic use, while 29% were judged insufficient. All IHC protocols used for the stained slides submitted to NordiQC have been evaluated by focusing on the technical calibration performed by the laboratories, and specific parameters that gave sufficient or insufficient results have been identified. The most common causes for insufficient results were: inadequate calibration of the primary antibody, use of an inadequate primary antibody, inappropriate choice of epitope retrieval method, insufficient heat induced epitope retrieval (HIER) and use of an inadequate detection kit. Approximately 90% of the insufficient results were characterized by either a signal that was too weak or false negative staining, whereas in the remaining 10%, a poor signal-to-noise ratio or false positive staining was seen. Identification of positive and negative tissue controls to ensure appropriate calibration of the IHC assay combined with individually tailored suggestions for protocol optimization have improved IHC staining for many markers and thus inter-laboratory consistency of the IHC results. The overall data generated by NordiQC during 11 years clearly indicates that external quality assessment is a valuable and necessary supplement

  13. External quality assessment in resource–limited countries

    PubMed Central

    Carter, Jane Y

    2017-01-01

    Introduction Health laboratory services are a critical component of national health systems but face major operational challenges in resource-limited (RL) settings. New funding for health systems strengthening in RL countries has increased the demand for diagnostics and provided opportunities to address these constraints. An approach to sustainably strengthen national laboratory systems in sub-Saharan African countries is the Strengthening Laboratory Management Toward Accreditation (SLMTA) programme. External Quality Assessment (EQA) is a requirement for laboratory accreditation. EQA comprises proficiency testing (PT), rechecking of samples and on-site evaluation. Materials and methods A systematic literature search was conducted to identify studies addressing laboratory EQA and quality monitoring in RL countries. Unpublished reports were also sought from national laboratory authorities and personnel. Results PT schemes in RL countries are provided by commercial companies, institutions in developed countries and national programmes. Most government-supported PT schemes address single diseases using a vertical approach. Regional approaches to delivering PT have also been implemented across RL countries. Rechecking schemes address mainly tuberculosis (TB), malaria and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV); integrated rechecking programmes have been piloted. Constraints include sample transportation, communication of results, unknown proficiency of referee staff and limited resources for corrective action. Global competency assessment standards for malaria microscopists have been established. Conclusions EQA is vital for monitoring laboratory performance and maintaining quality of laboratory services, and is a valuable tool for identifying and assessing technology in use, identifying gaps in laboratory performance and targeting training needs. Accreditation of PT providers and competency of EQA personnel must be ensured. PMID:28392732

  14. ACS/HRC Internal Assessment of Data Quality

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sirianni, Marco

    2006-07-01

    This program will assess the functionality of HRC after the ACS Suspend event that occurred on day 266 2006.A series of Bias, 0.1 sec pseudo dark, Dark and internal flat will be executed through amps A and B to assessdata quality.10-09-2006 : visits 01-03 should be withdrawn. 10-10-2006: visits 04-07 contains bias and dark frames to allow the creation of reference files using the standardamount of images. Two pairs of internal flats have been added for sanity checks.

  15. Unstructured mesh quality assessment and upwind Euler solution algorithm validation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Woodard, Paul R.; Batina, John T.; Yang, Henry T. Y.

    1994-05-01

    Quality assessment procedures are described for two and three dimensional unstructured meshes. The procedures include measurement of minimum angles, element aspect ratios, stretching, and element skewness. Meshes about the ONERA M6 wing and the Boeing 747 transport configuration are generated using an advancing front method grid generation package of programs. Solutions of the Euler equations for these meshes are obtained at low angle of attack, transonic conditions. Results for these cases, obtained as part of a validation study, investigate accuracy of an implicit upwind Euler solution algorithm.

  16. Water-quality assessment of south-central Texas : comparison of water quality in surface-water samples collected manually and by automated samplers

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ging, Patricia B.

    1999-01-01

    Surface-water sampling protocols of the U.S. Geological Survey National Water-Quality Assessment (NAWQA) Program specify samples for most properties and constituents to be collected manually in equal-width increments across a stream channel and composited for analysis. Single-point sampling with an automated sampler (autosampler) during storms was proposed in the upper part of the South-Central Texas NAWQA study unit, raising the question of whether property and constituent concentrations from automatically collected samples differ significantly from those in samples collected manually. Statistical (Wilcoxon signed-rank test) analyses of 3 to 16 paired concentrations for each of 26 properties and constituents from water samples collected using both methods at eight sites in the upper part of the study unit indicated that there were no significant differences in concentrations for dissolved constituents, other than calcium and organic carbon.

  17. Quality Assessment of University Studies as a Service: Dimensions and Criteria

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pukelyte, Rasa

    2010-01-01

    This article reviews a possibility to assess university studies as a service. University studies have to be of high quality both in their content and in the administrative level. Therefore, quality of studies as a service is an important constituent part of study quality assurance. When assessing quality of university studies as a service, it is…

  18. Use of Thematic Mapper for water quality assessment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Horn, E. M.; Morrissey, L. A.

    1984-01-01

    The evaluation of simulated TM data obtained on an ER-2 aircraft at twenty-five predesignated sample sites for mapping water quality factors such as conductivity, pH, suspended solids, turbidity, temperature, and depth, is discussed. Using a multiple regression for the seven TM bands, an equation is developed for the suspended solids. TM bands 1, 2, 3, 4, and 6 are used with logarithm conductivity in a multiple regression. The assessment of regression equations for a high coefficient of determination (R-squared) and statistical significance is considered. Confidence intervals about the mean regression point are calculated in order to assess the robustness of the regressions used for mapping conductivity, turbidity, and suspended solids, and by regressing random subsamples of sites and comparing the resultant range of R-squared, cross validation is conducted.

  19. Assessment of porous asphalt pavement performance: hydraulics and water quality

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Briggs, J. F.; Ballestero, T. P.; Roseen, R. M.; Houle, J. J.

    2005-05-01

    The objective of this study is to focus on the water quality treatment and hydraulic performance of a porous asphalt pavement parking lot in Durham, New Hampshire. The site was constructed in October 2004 to assess the suitability of porous asphalt pavement for stormwater management in cold climates. The facility consists of a 4-inch asphalt open-graded friction course layer overlying a high porosity sand and gravel base. This base serves as a storage reservoir in-between storms that can slowly infiltrate groundwater. Details on the design, construction, and cost of the facility will be presented. The porous asphalt pavements is qualitatively monitored for signs of distress, especially those due to cold climate stresses like plowing, sanding, salting, and freeze-thaw cycles. Life cycle predictions are discussed. Surface infiltration rates are measured with a constant head device built specifically to test high infiltration capacity pavements. The test measures infiltration rates in a single 4-inch diameter column temporarily sealed to the pavement at its base. A surface inundation test, as described by Bean, is also conducted as a basis for comparison of results (Bean, 2004). These tests assess infiltration rates soon after installation, throughout the winter, during snowmelt, after a winter of salting, sanding, and plowing, and after vacuuming in the spring. Frost penetration into the subsurface reservoir is monitored with a frost gauge. Hydrologic effects of the system are evaluated. Water levels are monitored in the facility and in surrounding wells with continuously logging pressure transducers. The 6-inch underdrain pipe that conveys excess water in the subsurface reservoir to a riprap pad is also continuously monitored for flow. Since porous asphalt pavement systems infiltrate surface water into the subsurface, it is important to assess whether water quality treatment performance in the subsurface reservoir is adequate. The assumed influent water quality is

  20. Assessing Hippocampal Development and Language in Early Childhood: Evidence From a New Application of the Automatic Segmentation Adapter Tool

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Joshua K.; Nordahl, Christine W.; Amaral, David G.; Lee, Aaron; Solomon, Marjorie; Ghetti, Simona

    2016-01-01

    Volumetric assessments of the hippocampus and other brain structures during childhood provide useful indices of brain development and correlates of cognitive functioning in typically and atypically developing children. Automated methods such as FreeSurfer promise efficient and replicable segmentation, but may include errors which are avoided by trained manual tracers. A recently devised automated correction tool that uses a machine learning algorithm to remove systematic errors, the Automatic Segmentation Adapter Tool (ASAT), was capable of substantially improving the accuracy of FreeSurfer segmentations in an adult sample [Wang et al., 2011], but the utility of ASAT has not been examined in pediatric samples. In Study 1, the validity of FreeSurfer and ASAT corrected hippocampal segmentations were examined in 20 typically developing children and 20 children with autism spectrum disorder aged 2 and 3 years. We showed that while neither FreeSurfer nor ASAT accuracy differed by disorder or age, the accuracy of ASAT corrected segmentations were substantially better than FreeSurfer segmentations in every case, using as few as 10 training examples. In Study 2, we applied ASAT to 89 typically developing children aged 2 to 4 years to examine relations between hippocampal volume, age, sex, and expressive language. Girls had smaller hippocampi overall, and in left hippocampus this difference was larger in older than younger girls. Expressive language ability was greater in older children, and this difference was larger in those with larger hippocampi, bilaterally. Overall, this research shows that ASAT is highly reliable and useful to examinations relating behavior to hippocampal structure. PMID:26279309

  1. Assessing hippocampal development and language in early childhood: Evidence from a new application of the Automatic Segmentation Adapter Tool.

    PubMed

    Lee, Joshua K; Nordahl, Christine W; Amaral, David G; Lee, Aaron; Solomon, Marjorie; Ghetti, Simona

    2015-11-01

    Volumetric assessments of the hippocampus and other brain structures during childhood provide useful indices of brain development and correlates of cognitive functioning in typically and atypically developing children. Automated methods such as FreeSurfer promise efficient and replicable segmentation, but may include errors which are avoided by trained manual tracers. A recently devised automated correction tool that uses a machine learning algorithm to remove systematic errors, the Automatic Segmentation Adapter Tool (ASAT), was capable of substantially improving the accuracy of FreeSurfer segmentations in an adult sample [Wang et al., 2011], but the utility of ASAT has not been examined in pediatric samples. In Study 1, the validity of FreeSurfer and ASAT corrected hippocampal segmentations were examined in 20 typically developing children and 20 children with autism spectrum disorder aged 2 and 3 years. We showed that while neither FreeSurfer nor ASAT accuracy differed by disorder or age, the accuracy of ASAT corrected segmentations were substantially better than FreeSurfer segmentations in every case, using as few as 10 training examples. In Study 2, we applied ASAT to 89 typically developing children aged 2 to 4 years to examine relations between hippocampal volume, age, sex, and expressive language. Girls had smaller hippocampi overall, and in left hippocampus this difference was larger in older than younger girls. Expressive language ability was greater in older children, and this difference was larger in those with larger hippocampi, bilaterally. Overall, this research shows that ASAT is highly reliable and useful to examinations relating behavior to hippocampal structure.

  2. Quality assessment of recombinant proteins produced in plants.

    PubMed

    Medrano, Giuliana; Dolan, Maureen C; Condori, Jose; Radin, David N; Cramer, Carole L

    2012-01-01

    Plant-based expression technologies for recombinant proteins have begun to receive acceptance for pharmaceuticals and other commercial markets. Protein products derived from plants offer safer, more cost-effective, and less capital-intensive alternatives to traditional manufacturing systems using microbial fermentation or animal cell culture bioreactors. Moreover, plants are now known to be capable of expressing bioactive proteins from a diverse array of species including animals and humans. Methods development to assess the quality and performance of proteins manufactured in plants are essential to support the QA/QC demands as plant-produced protein products transition to the commercial marketplace. Within the pharmaceutical arena, process validation and acceptance criteria for biological products must comply with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and ICH Q6B guidelines in order to initiate the regulatory approval process. Detailed product specifications will also need to be developed and validated for plant-made proteins for the bioenergy, food, chemical synthesis, or research reagent markets.We have, therefore, developed assessment methods for important qualitative and quantitative parameters of the products and the manufacturing methods utilized in plant-based production systems. In this chapter, we describe a number of procedures to validate product identity and characteristics including mass analyses, antibody cross-reactivity, N-terminal sequencing, and bioactivity. We also address methods for routine assessment of yield, recovery, and purity. The methods presented are those developed for the synthesis and recovery of the avian cytokine, chicken interleukin-12 (ChIL-12), produced in the leaves of Nicotiana benthamiana. The ChIL-12 protein used as a model for this chapter includes a C-terminal histidine epitope (HIS-tag) and, thus, these methods may be directly applicable to other HIS-tagged proteins produced in plants. However, the overall strategy

  3. 42 CFR 438.240 - Quality assessment and performance improvement program.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 4 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Quality assessment and performance improvement... HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES (CONTINUED) MEDICAL ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS MANAGED CARE Quality Assessment and Performance Improvement Measurement and Improvement Standards § 438.240 Quality assessment and...

  4. 42 CFR 482.21 - Condition of participation: Quality assessment and performance improvement program.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 5 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Condition of participation: Quality assessment and... FOR HOSPITALS Basic Hospital Functions § 482.21 Condition of participation: Quality assessment and..., hospital-wide, data-driven quality assessment and performance improvement program. The hospital's...

  5. 42 CFR 438.240 - Quality assessment and performance improvement program.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 4 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Quality assessment and performance improvement... HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES (CONTINUED) MEDICAL ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS MANAGED CARE Quality Assessment and Performance Improvement Measurement and Improvement Standards § 438.240 Quality assessment and...

  6. 42 CFR 403.732 - Condition of participation: Quality assessment and performance improvement.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 2 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Condition of participation: Quality assessment and... participation: Quality assessment and performance improvement. The RNHCI must develop, implement, and maintain a quality assessment and performance improvement program. (a) Standard: Program scope. (1) The...

  7. 42 CFR 403.732 - Condition of participation: Quality assessment and performance improvement.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 2 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Condition of participation: Quality assessment and... participation: Quality assessment and performance improvement. The RNHCI must develop, implement, and maintain a quality assessment and performance improvement program. (a) Standard: Program scope. (1) The...

  8. 42 CFR 418.58 - Condition of participation: Quality assessment and performance improvement.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 3 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Condition of participation: Quality assessment and... Participation: Patient Care § 418.58 Condition of participation: Quality assessment and performance improvement... quality assessment and performance improvement program. The hospice's governing body must ensure that...

  9. 42 CFR 494.110 - Condition: Quality assessment and performance improvement.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 5 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Condition: Quality assessment and performance... RENAL DISEASE FACILITIES Patient Care § 494.110 Condition: Quality assessment and performance..., quality assessment and performance improvement program with participation by the professional members...

  10. 42 CFR 403.732 - Condition of participation: Quality assessment and performance improvement.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 2 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Condition of participation: Quality assessment and... participation: Quality assessment and performance improvement. The RNHCI must develop, implement, and maintain a quality assessment and performance improvement program. (a) Standard: Program scope. (1) The...

  11. 42 CFR 416.43 - Conditions for coverage-Quality assessment and performance improvement.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 3 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Conditions for coverage-Quality assessment and... Conditions for Coverage § 416.43 Conditions for coverage—Quality assessment and performance improvement. The ASC must develop, implement and maintain an ongoing, data-driven quality assessment and...

  12. 42 CFR 494.110 - Condition: Quality assessment and performance improvement.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 5 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Condition: Quality assessment and performance... RENAL DISEASE FACILITIES Patient Care § 494.110 Condition: Quality assessment and performance..., quality assessment and performance improvement program with participation by the professional members...

  13. 42 CFR 438.240 - Quality assessment and performance improvement program.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 4 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Quality assessment and performance improvement... HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES (CONTINUED) MEDICAL ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS MANAGED CARE Quality Assessment and Performance Improvement Measurement and Improvement Standards § 438.240 Quality assessment and...

  14. 42 CFR 418.58 - Condition of participation: Quality assessment and performance improvement.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 3 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Condition of participation: Quality assessment and... Participation: Patient Care § 418.58 Condition of participation: Quality assessment and performance improvement... quality assessment and performance improvement program. The hospice's governing body must ensure that...

  15. 42 CFR 482.21 - Condition of participation: Quality assessment and performance improvement program.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 5 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Condition of participation: Quality assessment and... FOR HOSPITALS Basic Hospital Functions § 482.21 Condition of participation: Quality assessment and..., hospital-wide, data-driven quality assessment and performance improvement program. The hospital's...

  16. 42 CFR 416.43 - Conditions for coverage-Quality assessment and performance improvement.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 3 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Conditions for coverage-Quality assessment and... Specific Conditions for Coverage § 416.43 Conditions for coverage—Quality assessment and performance improvement. The ASC must develop, implement and maintain an ongoing, data-driven quality assessment...

  17. 42 CFR 438.240 - Quality assessment and performance improvement program.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 4 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Quality assessment and performance improvement... HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES (CONTINUED) MEDICAL ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS MANAGED CARE Quality Assessment and Performance Improvement Measurement and Improvement Standards § 438.240 Quality assessment and...

  18. 42 CFR 494.110 - Condition: Quality assessment and performance improvement.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 5 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Condition: Quality assessment and performance... RENAL DISEASE FACILITIES Patient Care § 494.110 Condition: Quality assessment and performance..., quality assessment and performance improvement program with participation by the professional members...

  19. 42 CFR 403.732 - Condition of participation: Quality assessment and performance improvement.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 2 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Condition of participation: Quality assessment and... participation: Quality assessment and performance improvement. The RNHCI must develop, implement, and maintain a quality assessment and performance improvement program. (a) Standard: Program scope. (1) The...

  20. 42 CFR 438.240 - Quality assessment and performance improvement program.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 4 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Quality assessment and performance improvement... HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES (CONTINUED) MEDICAL ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS MANAGED CARE Quality Assessment and Performance Improvement Measurement and Improvement Standards § 438.240 Quality assessment and...

  1. Agreement in Quality of Life Assessment between Adolescents with Intellectual Disability and Their Parents

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Golubovic, Spela; Skrbic, Renata

    2013-01-01

    Intellectual disability affects different aspects of functioning and quality of life, as well as the ability to independently assess the quality of life itself. The paper examines the agreement in the quality of life assessments made by adolescents with intellectual disability and their parents compared with assessments made by adolescents without…

  2. Development and Validation of a Consumer Quality Assessment Instrument for Dentistry.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Johnson, Jeffrey D.; And Others

    1990-01-01

    This paper reviews the literature on consumer involvement in dental quality assessment, argues for inclusion of this information in quality assessment measures, outlines a conceptual model for measuring dental consumer quality assessment, and presents data relating to the development and validation of an instrument based on the conceptual model.…

  3. 42 CFR 493.1239 - Standard: General laboratory systems quality assessment.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... quality assessment. (a) The laboratory must establish and follow written policies and procedures for an... quality assessment must include a review of the effectiveness of corrective actions taken to resolve... of general laboratory systems quality assessment reviews with appropriate staff. (c) The...

  4. 42 CFR 494.110 - Condition: Quality assessment and performance improvement.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 5 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Condition: Quality assessment and performance... RENAL DISEASE FACILITIES Patient Care § 494.110 Condition: Quality assessment and performance..., quality assessment and performance improvement program with participation by the professional members...

  5. Transcription factor motif quality assessment requires systematic comparative analysis

    PubMed Central

    Kibet, Caleb Kipkurui; Machanick, Philip

    2016-01-01

    Transcription factor (TF) binding site prediction remains a challenge in gene regulatory research due to degeneracy and potential variability in binding sites in the genome. Dozens of algorithms designed to learn binding models (motifs) have generated many motifs available in research papers with a subset making it to databases like JASPAR, UniPROBE and Transfac. The presence of many versions of motifs from the various databases for a single TF and the lack of a standardized assessment technique makes it difficult for biologists to make an appropriate choice of binding model and for algorithm developers to benchmark, test and improve on their models. In this study, we review and evaluate the approaches in use, highlight differences and demonstrate the difficulty of defining a standardized motif assessment approach. We review scoring functions, motif length, test data and the type of performance metrics used in prior studies as some of the factors that influence the outcome of a motif assessment. We show that the scoring functions and statistics used in motif assessment influence ranking of motifs in a TF-specific manner. We also show that TF binding specificity can vary by source of genomic binding data. We also demonstrate that information content of a motif is not in isolation a measure of motif quality but is influenced by TF binding behaviour. We conclude that there is a need for an easy-to-use tool that presents all available evidence for a comparative analysis. PMID:27092243

  6. Assessment of Functional Status and Quality of Life in Claudication

    PubMed Central

    Mays, Ryan J.; Casserly, Ivan P.; Kohrt, Wendy M.; Ho, P. Michael; Hiatt, William R.; Nehler, Mark R.; Regensteiner, Judith G.

    2012-01-01

    Background Treadmill walking is commonly used to evaluate walking impairment and efficacy of treatment for intermittent claudication (IC) in clinical and research settings. Although this is an important measure, it does not provide information about how patients perceive the effects of their treatments on more global measures of health-related quality of life (HRQOL). Methods PubMed/Medline was searched to find publications about the most commonly used questionnaires to assess functional status and/or general and disease-specific HRQOL in patients with PAD who experience IC. Inclusion criteria for questionnaires were based on existence of a body of literature in symptomatic PAD. Results Six general questionnaires and 7 disease-specific questionnaires are included with details about the number of domains covered and how each tool is scored. The Medical Outcomes Study Short Form 36 item questionnaire and Walking Impairment Questionnaire are currently the most used general and disease-specific questionnaires at baseline and following treatment for IC, respectively. Conclusions The use of tools which assess functional status and HRQOL has importance in both the clinical and research areas to assess treatment efficacy from the patient perspective. Therefore, assessing HRQOL in addition to treadmill-measured walking ability provides insight as to effects of treatments on patient outcomes and may help guide therapy. PMID:21334172

  7. Water quality monitoring and risk assessment by simultaneous multipathogen quantification.

    PubMed

    Ishii, Satoshi; Nakamura, Takamitsu; Ozawa, Shuji; Kobayashi, Ayano; Sano, Daisuke; Okabe, Satoshi

    2014-05-06

    Water quality monitoring and microbial risk assessment are important to ensure safe water for drinking, recreational, and agricultural purposes. In this study, we applied a microfluidic quantitative PCR (MFQPCR) approach to simultaneously quantify multiple waterborne pathogens in a natural freshwater lake in Hokkaido, Japan, from April to November, 2012. Tens of thousands of geese stopped over at this lake during their migration in spring and fall. Because lake water is used for irrigation of the surrounding agricultural area, we assessed infection risks through irrigation water usage based on pathogen concentrations directly measured by MFQPCR. We detected various pathogens in the lake water, particularly during the bird migration seasons, suggesting that migratory birds were the main source of the pathogens. However, neither counts of geese nor fecal indicator bacteria were good predictors of pathogen concentrations. On the basis of quantitative microbial risk assessment, concentrations of Campylobacter jejuni and Shigella spp. in water samples were above the concentrations that can potentially cause 10(-4) infections per person per year when water is used to grow fresh vegetables. These results suggest that direct and simultaneous multipathogen quantification can provide more reliable and comprehensive information for risk assessment than the current fecal indicator-based approach.

  8. Chemometrics quality assessment of wastewater treatment plant effluents using physicochemical parameters and UV absorption measurements.

    PubMed

    Platikanov, S; Rodriguez-Mozaz, S; Huerta, B; Barceló, D; Cros, J; Batle, M; Poch, G; Tauler, R

    2014-07-01

    Chemometric techniques like Principal Component Analysis (PCA) and Partial Least Squares Regression (PLS) are used to explore, analyze and model relationships among different water quality parameters in wastewater treatment plants (WWTP). Different data sets generated by laboratory analysis and by an automatic multi-parametric monitoring system with a new designed optical device have been investigated for temporal variations on water quality parameters measured in the water influent and effluent of a WWTP over different time scales. The obtained results allowed the discovery of the more important relationships among the monitored parameters and of their cyclic dependence on time (daily, monthly and annual cycles) and on different plant management procedures. This study intended also the modeling and prediction of concentrations of several water components and parameters, especially relevant for water quality assessment, such as Dissolved Organic Matter (DOM), Total Organic Carbon (TOC) nitrate, detergent, and phenol concentrations. PLS models were built to correlate target concentrations of these constituents with UV spectra measured in samples collected at (1) laboratory conditions (in synthetic water mixtures); and at (2) WWTP conditions (in real water samples from the plant). Using synthetic water mixtures, specific wavelengths were selected with the aim to establish simple and reliable prediction models, which gave good relative predictions with errors of around 3-4% for nitrates, detergent and phenols concentrations and of around 15% for the DOM in external validation. In the case of nitrate and TOC concentrations modeling in real water samples from the effluent of the WWTP using the reduced spectral data set, results were also promising with low prediction errors (less than 20%).

  9. Quality assessment of butter cookies applying multispectral imaging.

    PubMed

    Andresen, Mette S; Dissing, Bjørn S; Løje, Hanne

    2013-07-01

    A method for characterization of butter cookie quality by assessing the surface browning and water content using multispectral images is presented. Based on evaluations of the browning of butter cookies, cookies were manually divided into groups. From this categorization, reference values were calculated for a statistical prediction model correlating multispectral images with a browning score. The browning score is calculated as a function of oven temperature and baking time. It is presented as a quadratic response surface. The investigated process window was the intervals 4-16 min and 160-200°C in a forced convection electrically heated oven. In addition to the browning score, a model for predicting the average water content based on the same images is presented. This shows how multispectral images of butter cookies may be used for the assessment of different quality parameters. Statistical analysis showed that the most significant wavelengths for browning predictions were in the interval 400-700 nm and the wavelengths significant for water prediction were primarily located in the near-infrared spectrum. The water prediction model was found to correctly estimate the average water content with an absolute error of 0.22%. From the images it was also possible to follow the browning and drying propagation from the cookie edge toward the center.

  10. Fundamental data quality assessments of clinical trials in Japan.

    PubMed

    Saijo, Hajime; Kasai, Hiroi; Takahashi, Hiromitu; Harigai, Masayoshi; Takase, Kozo

    2006-03-01

    Along with continued efforts to improve data quality in clinical trials, it is imperative to make critical assessments about the recognition, traceability, and validation of the data on final outputs of clinical trials. The present study investigated protocols in 36 clinical trials and case report forms (CRFs) for 141 patients. CRFs were categorized as Book Type (BT), Visit Type (VT), and Separate binding Type (ST). The achievement of recognition, traceability, and validation of the data in CRFs was assessed using arbitrary grading scales. There were significant differences between the VT and BT conditions in terms of traceability and validation 1 (the integrity of clinical laboratory test data). No significant differences were observed among the three types of CRFs in terms of recognition and validation 2 (verification of test drug compliance). These findings indicate that the traceability and the integrity of clinical laboratory test data depend on the structure of the CRFs used, whereas recognition and verification of test drug compliance were more matters of protocol design. Therefore, of the three CRFs, the VT CRF is considered to be the best choice of format for collecting clinical trial data as it maximizes the quality of clinical trials until electronic document systems are adopted.

  11. Indoor Air Quality Assessment of the San Francisco Federal Building

    SciTech Connect

    Apte, Michael; Bennett, Deborah H.; Faulkner, David; Maddalena, Randy L.; Russell, Marion L.; Spears, Michael; Sullivan, Douglas P; Trout, Amber L.

    2008-07-01

    An assessment of the indoor air quality (IAQ) of the San Francisco Federal Building (SFFB) was conducted on May 12 and 14, 2009 at the request of the General Services Administration (GSA). The purpose of the assessment was for a general screening of IAQ parameters typically indicative of well functioning building systems. One naturally ventilated space and one mechanically ventilated space were studied. In both zones, the levels of indoor air contaminants, including CO2, CO, particulate matter, volatile organic compounds, and aldehydes, were low, relative to reference exposure levels and air quality standards for comparable office buildings. We found slightly elevated levels of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) including two compounds often found in"green" cleaning products. In addition, we found two industrial solvents at levels higher than typically seen in office buildings, but the levels were not sufficient to be of a health concern. The ventilation rates in the two study spaces were high by any standard. Ventilation rates in the building should be further investigated and adjusted to be in line with the building design. Based on our measurements, we conclude that the IAQ is satisfactory in the zone we tested, but IAQ may need to be re-checked after the ventilation rates have been lowered.

  12. [Quality demands on the assessment of colour vision].

    PubMed

    Krastel, H; Kolling, G; Schiefer, U; Bach, M

    2009-12-01

    Assessing colour vision comprises a wide spectrum of methods, many of which are practical and highly informative. Given this methodological variety this review aims to help select the most appropriate test and how to correctly execute it, thus achieving the highest quality.Some aspects of the physiology of colour vision are covered as far as is necessary for a basic understanding of colour testing methodology and possible pitfalls. For congenital colour anomalies most pertinent are questions of occupational aptitude. For acquired colour deficiencies assessing colour vision supplements diagnostics of the retina and the visual pathway, allowing both early diagnosis and/or monitoring. For both these fields colour tests provide different kinds of evidence and need to be adequately selected. Methodical artefacts due to both equipment design properties and testing procedures are highlighted so they can be avoided. A form is presented for recording colour examination results commensurate with quality objectives. Finally, a tabular overview of 19 common colour vision tests is provided.

  13. Can water quality of tubewells be assessed without chemical testing?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoque, Mohammad A.; Butler, Adrian P.

    2016-04-01

    Arsenic is one of the major pollutants found in aquifers on a global scale. The screening of tubewells for arsenic has helped many people to avoid drinking from highly polluted wells in the Bengal Delta (West Bengal and Bangladesh). However, there are still many millions of tubewells in Bangladesh yet to be tested, and a substantial proportion of these are likely to contain excessive arsenic. Due to the level of poverty and lack of infrastructure, it is unlikely that the rest of the tubewells will be tested quickly. However, water quality assessment without needing a chemical testing may be helpful in this case. Studies have found that qualitative factors, such as staining in the tubewell basement and/or on utensils, can indicate subsurface geology and water quality. The science behind this staining is well established, red staining is associated with iron reduction leading to release of arsenic whilst black staining is associated with manganese reduction (any release of arsenic due to manganese reduction is sorbed back on the, yet to be reduced, iron), whereas mixed staining may indicate overlapping manganese and iron reduction at the tubewell screen. Reduction is not uniform everywhere and hence chemical water quality including dissolved arsenic varies from place to place. This is why coupling existing tubewell arsenic information with user derived staining data could be useful in predicting the arsenic status at a particular site. Using well location, depth, along with colour of staining, an assessment of both good (nutrients) and bad (toxins and pathogens) substances in the tubewell could be provided. Social-network technology, combined with increasing use of smartphones, provides a powerful opportunity for both sharing and providing feedback to the user. Here we outline how a simple digital application can couple the reception both qualitative and quantitative tubewell data into a centralised interactive database and provide manipulated feedback to an

  14. Visual quality assessment of electrochromic and conventional glazings

    SciTech Connect

    Moeck, M.; Lee, E.S.; Rubin, M.D.; Sullivan, R.; Selkowitz, S.E.

    1996-09-01

    Variable transmission, ``switchable`` electrochromic glazings are compared to conventional static glazings using computer simulations to assess the daylighting quality of a commercial office environment where paper and computer tasks are performed. RADIANCE simulations were made for a west-facing commercial office space under clear and overcast sky conditions. This visualization tool was used to model different glazing types, to compute luminance and illuminance levels, and to generate a parametric set of photorealistic images of typical interior views at various times of the day and year. Privacy and visual display terminal (VDT) visibility is explored. Electrochromic glazings result in a more consistent glare-free daylit environment compared to their static counterparts. However, if the glazing is controlled to minimize glare or to maintain low interior daylight levels for critical visual tasks (e.g, VDT), occupants may object to the diminished quality of the outdoor view due to its low transmission (Tv = 0.08) during those hours. RADIANCE proved to be a very powerful tool to better understand some of the design tradeoffs of this emerging glazing technology. The ability to draw specific conclusions about the relative value of different technologies or control strategies is limited by the lack of agreed upon criteria or standards for lighting quality and visibility.

  15. Smolt Quality Assessment of Spring Chinook Salmon : Annual Report.

    SciTech Connect

    Zaugg, Waldo S.

    1991-04-01

    The physiological development and physiological condition of spring chinook salmon are being studied at several hatcheries in the Columbia River Basin. The purpose of the study is to determine whether any or several smolt indices can be related to adult recovery and be used to improve hatchery effectiveness. The tests conducted in 1989 on juvenile chinook salmon at Dworshak, Leavenworth, and Warm Springs National Fish Hatcheries, and the Oregon State Willamette Hatchery assessed saltwater tolerance, gill ATPase, cortisol, insulin, thyroid hormones, secondary stress, fish morphology, metabolic energy stores, immune response, blood cell numbers, and plasma ion concentrations. The study showed that smolt development may have occurred before the fish were released from the Willamette Hatchery, but not from the Dworshak, Leavenworth, or Warm Springs Hatcheries. These results will be compared to adult recovery data when they become available, to determine which smolt quality indices may be used to predict adult recovery. The relative rankings of smolt quality at the different hatcheries do not necessarily reflect the competency of the hatchery managers and staff, who have shown a high degree of professionalism and expertise in fish rearing. We believe that the differences in smolt quality are due to the interaction of genetic and environmental factors. One aim of this research is to identify factors that influence smolt development and that may be controlled through fish husbandry to regulate smolt development. 35 refs., 27 figs., 5 tabs.

  16. State-Level Cancer Quality Assessment and Research

    PubMed Central

    Lipscomb, Joseph; Gillespie, Theresa W.

    2016-01-01

    Over a decade ago, the Institute of Medicine called for a national cancer data system in the United States to support quality-of-care assessment and improvement, including research on effective interventions. Although considerable progress has been achieved in cancer quality measurement and effectiveness research, the nation still lacks a population-based data infrastructure for accurately identifying cancer patients and tracking services and outcomes over time. For compelling reasons, the most effective pathway forward may be the development of state-level cancer data systems, in which central registry data are linked to multiple public and private secondary sources. These would include administrative/claims files from Medicare, Medicaid, and private insurers. Moreover, such a state-level system would promote rapid learning by encouraging adoption of near-real-time reporting and feedback systems, such as the Commission on Cancer’s new Rapid Quality Reporting System. The groundwork for such a system is being laid in the state of Georgia, and similar work is advancing in other states. The pace of progress depends on the successful resolution of issues related to the application of information technology, financing, and governance. PMID:21799333

  17. Chip Design Process Optimization Based on Design Quality Assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Häusler, Stefan; Blaschke, Jana; Sebeke, Christian; Rosenstiel, Wolfgang; Hahn, Axel

    2010-06-01

    Nowadays, the managing of product development projects is increasingly challenging. Especially the IC design of ASICs with both analog and digital components (mixed-signal design) is becoming more and more complex, while the time-to-market window narrows at the same time. Still, high quality standards must be fulfilled. Projects and their status are becoming less transparent due to this complexity. This makes the planning and execution of projects rather difficult. Therefore, there is a need for efficient project control. A main challenge is the objective evaluation of the current development status. Are all requirements successfully verified? Are all intermediate goals achieved? Companies often develop special solutions that are not reusable in other projects. This makes the quality measurement process itself less efficient and produces too much overhead. The method proposed in this paper is a contribution to solve these issues. It is applied at a German design house for analog mixed-signal IC design. This paper presents the results of a case study and introduces an optimized project scheduling on the basis of quality assessment results.

  18. Implementation of an automatic and miniature on-line multi-parameter water quality monitoring system and experimental determination of chemical oxygen demand and ammonia-nitrogen.

    PubMed

    Xie, Yingke; Wen, Zhiyu; Mo, Zhihong; Yu, Zhiqiang; Wei, Kanglin

    2016-01-01

    An automatic, miniature and multi-parameter on-line water quality monitoring system based on a micro-spectrometer is designed and implemented. The system is integrated with the flow-batch analysis and spectrophotometric detection method. The effectiveness of the system is tested by measuring chemical oxygen demand (COD) and ammonia-nitrogen in water. The results show that the modified system provides a cost-effective, sensitive, reproducible and reliable way to measure COD and ammonia-nitrogen in water samples with automatic operation and low toxic chemical consumption. In addition, the experiment results show that the relative error of the system is less than 10%, the limit of detection is 2 mg/L COD and 0.032 mg/L ammonia-nitrogen, respectively, and the relative standard deviation was 6.6% at 15.0 mg/L COD (n = 7) and 5.0% at 0.300 mg/L ammonia-nitrogen (n = 7). Results from the newly designed system are consistent with the data collected through the Chinese national standard analysis methods.

  19. Tennessee Star-Quality Child Care Program: QRS Profile. The Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Child Trends, 2010

    2010-01-01

    This paper presents a profile of Tennessee's Star-Quality Child Care Program prepared as part of the Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment Study. The profile consists of several sections and their corresponding descriptions including: (1) Program Information; (2) Rating Details; (3) Quality Indicators for Center-Based Programs; (4)…

  20. Louisiana Quality Start Child Care Rating System: QRS Profile. The Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Child Trends, 2010

    2010-01-01

    This paper presents a profile of Louisiana's Quality Start Child Care Rating System prepared as part of the Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment Study. The profile consists of several sections and their corresponding descriptions including: (1) Program Information; (2) Rating Details; (3) Quality Indicators for Center-Based Programs;…

  1. Quality assurance and technology assessment: pieces of a larger puzzle.

    PubMed

    McDonald, I G

    2000-01-01

    Increasing integration of health care and health services research has resulted in an overlap between disciplines involved in the evaluation of clinical practice. We have examined the relationships of quality assurance (QA), medical technology assessment (TA), clinical epidemiology (CE) and evidence-based medicine (EBM) from an historical perspective. Clinicians, patients and administrators need local information on effectiveness of routine care. Information from trials alone, efficacy data, will not suffice nor can it be culled from administrative databases designed for other purposes. The current activities of QA should be therefore be expanded to include the study of the effectiveness of interventions in terms of appropriateness of use, patient outcomes and study of the determinants of outcomes, as seen from the perspective of doctors, patients, administrators and policy makers, using data collected during the course of routine patient care. With the assistance of information technology, with methodological support and multidisciplinary cooperation, clinicians can do this as part of a more broadly defined clinical research. Quality assurance and TA both evolved with the objective of studying clinical care but have quite different historical roots, complementary perspectives and objectives, use different methods and involve a different set of practitioners. Quality assurance is a type of 'formative' evaluation conducted in the clinical setting using indicators as flags of process or outcome events of interest, simple surveys and audit studies. Its primary aim is to achieve incremental improvement rather than to simply pass judgement. An important underlying assumption is that health care behaves as a complex dynamic system. Technology assessment, a form of summative evaluation with an orientation towards policy, synthesises information from formal scientific studies of efficacy in the form of clinical trials and studies of cost-effectiveness. For the evaluation

  2. ISO 9001: 2008 Quality Assurance Assessment of Defense Acquisition University Processes

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2012-09-27

    ISO 9001 :2008 Quality Management System Requirements. The...overall objective was to perform a quality review, using ISO 9001 :2008 Quality Management System assessment techniques, of Defense Acquisition...57 Introduction Objectives Our overall objective was to perform a quality review, using ISO 9001 :2008 Quality Management

  3. QUALITY-OF-CARE INDICATORS FOR PELVIC ORGAN PROLAPSE: DEVELOPMENT OF AN INFRASTRUCTURE FOR QUALITY ASSESSMENT

    PubMed Central

    Anger, Jennifer T.; Scott, Victoria C.S.; Kiyosaki, Krista; Khan, Aqsa A.; Sevilla, Claudia; Connor, Sarah E.; Roth, Carol P.; Litwin, Mark S.; Wenger, Neil S.; Shekelle, Paul G.

    2013-01-01

    Introduction A paucity of data exists addressing the quality of care provided to women with pelvic organ prolapse (POP). We sought to develop a means to measure this quality through the development of quality-of-care indicators (QIs). Methods QIs were modeled after those previously described in the Assessing the Care of Vulnerable Elders (ACOVE) project. The indicators were then presented to a panel of nine experts. Using the RAND Appropriateness Method, we analyzed each indicator’s preliminary rankings. A forum was then held in which each indicator was thoroughly discussed by the panelists as a group, after which panelists individually re-rated the indicators. QIs with median scores of at least seven were considered valid. Results QIs were developed that addressed screening, diagnosis, work-up, and both nonsurgical and surgical management. Areas of controversy included whether screening should be performed to identify prolapse, whether pessary users should undergo a vaginal exam by a health professional every six months versus annually, and whether a colpocleisis should be offered to older women planning to undergo surgery for POP. Fourteen of 21 potential indicators were rated as valid for pelvic organ prolapse (median score ≥ 7). Conclusion We developed and rated fourteen potential quality indicators for the care of women with POP. Once these QIs are tested for feasibility they can be used on a larger scale to measure and compare the care provided to women with prolapse in different clinical settings. PMID:23644812

  4. No-reference image quality assessment in the spatial domain.

    PubMed

    Mittal, Anish; Moorthy, Anush Krishna; Bovik, Alan Conrad

    2012-12-01

    We propose a natural scene statistic-based distortion-generic blind/no-reference (NR) image quality assessment (IQA) model that operates in the spatial domain. The new model, dubbed blind/referenceless image spatial quality evaluator (BRISQUE) does not compute distortion-specific features, such as ringing, blur, or blocking, but instead uses scene statistics of locally normalized luminance coefficients to quantify possible losses of "naturalness" in the image due to the presence of distortions, thereby leading to a holistic measure of quality. The underlying features used derive from the empirical distribution of locally normalized luminances and products of locally normalized luminances under a spatial natural scene statistic model. No transformation to another coordinate frame (DCT, wavelet, etc.) is required, distinguishing it from prior NR IQA approaches. Despite its simplicity, we are able to show that BRISQUE is statistically better than the full-reference peak signal-to-noise ratio and the structural similarity index, and is highly competitive with respect to all present-day distortion-generic NR IQA algorithms. BRISQUE has very low computational complexity, making it well suited for real time applications. BRISQUE features may be used for distortion-identification as well. To illustrate a new practical application of BRISQUE, we describe how a nonblind image denoising algorithm can be augmented with BRISQUE in order to perform blind image denoising. Results show that BRISQUE augmentation leads to performance improvements over state-of-the-art methods. A software release of BRISQUE is available online: http://live.ece.utexas.edu/research/quality/BRISQUE_release.zip for public use and evaluation.

  5. Image Quality Assessment Based on Local Linear Information and Distortion-Specific Compensation.

    PubMed

    Wang, Hanli; Fu, Jie; Lin, Weisi; Hu, Sudeng; Kuo, C-C Jay; Zuo, Lingxuan

    2016-12-14

    Image Quality Assessment (IQA) is a fundamental yet constantly developing task for computer vision and image processing. Most IQA evaluation mechanisms are based on the pertinence of subjective and objective estimation. Each image distortion type has its own property correlated with human perception. However, this intrinsic property may not be fully exploited by existing IQA methods. In this paper, we make two main contributions to the IQA field. First, a novel IQA method is developed based on a local linear model that examines the distortion between the reference and the distorted images for better alignment with human visual experience. Second, a distortion-specific compensation strategy is proposed to offset the negative effect on IQA modeling caused by different image distortion types. These score offsets are learned from several known distortion types. Furthermore, for an image with an unknown distortion type, a Convolutional Neural Network (CNN) based method is proposed to compute the score offset automatically. Finally, an integrated IQA metric is proposed by combining the aforementioned two ideas. Extensive experiments are performed to verify the proposed IQA metric, which demonstrate that the local linear model is useful in human perception modeling, especially for individual image distortion, and the overall IQA method outperforms several state-of-the-art IQA approaches.

  6. A CAD system and quality assurance protocol for bone age assessment utilizing digital hand atlas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gertych, Arakadiusz; Zhang, Aifeng; Ferrara, Benjamin; Liu, Brent J.

    2007-03-01

    Determination of bone age assessment (BAA) in pediatric radiology is a task based on detailed analysis of patient's left hand X-ray. The current standard utilized in clinical practice relies on a subjective comparison of the hand with patterns in the book atlas. The computerized approach to BAA (CBAA) utilizes automatic analysis of the regions of interest in the hand image. This procedure is followed by extraction of quantitative features sensitive to skeletal development that are further converted to a bone age value utilizing knowledge from the digital hand atlas (DHA). This also allows providing BAA results resembling current clinical approach. All developed methodologies have been combined into one CAD module with a graphical user interface (GUI). CBAA can also improve the statistical and analytical accuracy based on a clinical work-flow analysis. For this purpose a quality assurance protocol (QAP) has been developed. Implementation of the QAP helped to make the CAD more robust and find images that cannot meet conditions required by DHA standards. Moreover, the entire CAD-DHA system may gain further benefits if clinical acquisition protocol is modified. The goal of this study is to present the performance improvement of the overall CAD-DHA system with QAP and the comparison of the CAD results with chronological age of 1390 normal subjects from the DHA. The CAD workstation can process images from local image database or from a PACS server.

  7. Assessment of Quality of Life of Women with Breast Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Gavric, Zivana; Vukovic-Kostic, Zivana

    2016-01-01

    Background: Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer among women in 145 countries worldwide, and the success of healthcare for women with this disease is measured with the quality of life of survivors. The aim of this study was to examine how the breast cancer affects the quality of life and in what dimension of health quality of life is the least accomplished. Method: A pilot research had been performed in the period from June 10 to August 15 2011, on 100 women from Association of women with breast cancer “Iskra” in Banja Luka, aged 20-75. The survey research was based on the EORTC QLQ-C30 version 3.0 and questionnaire for assessment of quality of life of those suffering from breast cancer QLQ-BR23 with 53 questions in total. Results: The average age of women in research was 51.8 years (±11.23). Statistically important differences (χ24=221.941; p<0.01) are higher mean values of the score for the functional scale, (66.32±17.82) cognitive functions (63.50±28.00) in relation to functional role (46.83±20.88), social (37.00±27.58) and emotional (36.58 ±25.15) functioning. Mean values of the score for the symptoms scale were statistically higher for symptoms such as fatigue, insomnia and pain in relation to other symptoms. Mean values of the score for body image scale are statistically higher in relation to mean values of the score of sexual functions and enjoyment scale, and the scale for grading the future perspectives. Conclusion: Breast cancer affects all the domains of the quality of life, and in our population it is the most prominent in domains of emotional and social functions, as well as role functions. Symptoms of fatigue, insomnia and pain have the most importance influence on these domains. PMID:27157152

  8. Benchmarking Dosimetric Quality Assessment of Prostate Intensity-Modulated Radiotherapy

    SciTech Connect

    Senthi, Sashendra; Gill, Suki S.; Haworth, Annette; Kron, Tomas; Cramb, Jim; Rolfo, Aldo; Thomas, Jessica; Duchesne, Gillian M.; Hamilton, Christopher H.; Joon, Daryl Lim; Bowden, Patrick; Foroudi, Farshad

    2012-02-01

    Purpose: To benchmark the dosimetric quality assessment of prostate intensity-modulated radiotherapy and determine whether the quality is influenced by disease or treatment factors. Patients and Methods: We retrospectively analyzed the data from 155 consecutive men treated radically for prostate cancer using intensity-modulated radiotherapy to 78 Gy between January 2007 and March 2009 across six radiotherapy treatment centers. The plan quality was determined by the measures of coverage, homogeneity, and conformity. Tumor coverage was measured using the planning target volume (PTV) receiving 95% and 100% of the prescribed dose (V{sub 95%} and V{sub 100%}, respectively) and the clinical target volume (CTV) receiving 95% and 100% of the prescribed dose. Homogeneity was measured using the sigma index of the PTV and CTV. Conformity was measured using the lesion coverage factor, healthy tissue conformity index, and the conformity number. Multivariate regression models were created to determine the relationship between these and T stage, risk status, androgen deprivation therapy use, treatment center, planning system, and treatment date. Results: The largest discriminatory measurements of coverage, homogeneity, and conformity were the PTV V{sub 95%}, PTV sigma index, and conformity number. The mean PTV V{sub 95%} was 92.5% (95% confidence interval, 91.3-93.7%). The mean PTV sigma index was 2.10 Gy (95% confidence interval, 1.90-2.20). The mean conformity number was 0.78 (95% confidence interval, 0.76-0.79). The treatment center independently influenced the coverage, homogeneity, and conformity (all p < .0001). The planning system independently influenced homogeneity (p = .038) and conformity (p = .021). The treatment date independently influenced the PTV V{sub 95%} only, with it being better at the start (p = .013). Risk status, T stage, and the use of androgen deprivation therapy did not influence any aspect of plan quality. Conclusion: Our study has benchmarked measures

  9. Automatic transmission

    SciTech Connect

    Miura, M.; Aoki, H.

    1988-02-02

    An automatic transmission is described comprising: an automatic transmission mechanism portion comprising a single planetary gear unit and a dual planetary gear unit; carriers of both of the planetary gear units that are integral with one another; an input means for inputting torque to the automatic transmission mechanism, clutches for operatively connecting predetermined ones of planetary gear elements of both of the planetary gear units to the input means and braking means for restricting the rotation of predetermined ones of planetary gear elements of both of the planetary gear units. The clutches are disposed adjacent one another at an end portion of the transmission for defining a clutch portion of the transmission; a first clutch portion which is attachable to the automatic transmission mechanism portion for comprising the clutch portion when attached thereto; a second clutch portion that is attachable to the automatic transmission mechanism portion in place of the first clutch portion for comprising the clutch portion when so attached. The first clutch portion comprising first clutch for operatively connecting the input means to a ring gear of the single planetary gear unit and a second clutch for operatively connecting the input means to a single gear of the automatic transmission mechanism portion. The second clutch portion comprising a the first clutch, the second clutch, and a third clutch for operatively connecting the input member to a ring gear of the dual planetary gear unit.

  10. Assessing Website Pharmacy Drug Quality: Safer Than You Think?

    PubMed Central

    Bate, Roger; Hess, Kimberly

    2010-01-01

    Background Internet-sourced drugs are often considered suspect. The World Health Organization reports that drugs from websites that conceal their physical address are counterfeit in over 50 percent of cases; the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) works with the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy (NABP) to regularly update a list of websites likely to sell drugs that are illegal or of questionable quality. Methods and Findings This study examines drug purchasing over the Internet, by comparing the sales of five popular drugs from a selection of websites stratified by NABP or other ratings. The drugs were assessed for price, conditions of purchase, and basic quality. Prices and conditions of purchase varied widely. Some websites advertised single pills while others only permitted the purchase of large quantities. Not all websites delivered the exact drugs ordered, some delivered no drugs at all; many websites shipped from multiple international locations, and from locations that were different from those advertised on the websites. All drug samples were tested against approved U.S. brand formulations using Raman spectrometry. Many (17) websites substituted drugs, often in different formulations from the brands requested. These drugs, some of which were probably generics or perhaps non-bioequivalent copy versions, could not be assessed accurately. Of those drugs that could be assessed, none failed from “approved”, “legally compliant” or “not recommended” websites (0 out of 86), whereas 8.6% (3 out of 35) failed from “highly not recommended” and unidentifiable websites. Conclusions Of those drugs that could be assessed, all except Viagra® passed spectrometry testing. Of those that failed, few could be identified either by a country of manufacture listed on the packaging, or by the physical location of the website pharmacy. If confirmed by future studies on other drug samples, then U.S. consumers should be able to reduce their risk by

  11. Quantitation of carboxyhaemoglobin in blood: external quality assessment of techniques.

    PubMed

    Barnett, K; Wilson, J F

    1998-06-01

    The performance of four dedicated carbon monoxide (CO)-oximeters (AVL, Chiron, IL, Radiometer), spectrophotometry with and without dithionite, spectrophotometry by second derivative, and the Whitehead and Worthington precipitation technique for the measurement of carboxyhaemoglobin in blood was compared by a mean of 136 participants in the United Kingdom National External Quality Assessment Scheme in 21 samples formulated to contain from 4% to 48% carboxyhaemoglobin. The dedicated instruments and spectrophotometry by second derivative were of significantly higher precision than the other techniques, producing fewer measurements rejected as being > 3 standard deviations from the sample mean and having a lower standard deviation for non-rejected measurements. The AVL instrument and spectrophotometry by second derivative had a significant positive bias compared to the other techniques. The Whitehead and Worthington method was of an unacceptably low precision.

  12. Objective assessment of image quality. IV. Application to adaptive optics

    PubMed Central

    Barrett, Harrison H.; Myers, Kyle J.; Devaney, Nicholas; Dainty, Christopher

    2008-01-01

    The methodology of objective assessment, which defines image quality in terms of the performance of specific observers on specific tasks of interest, is extended to temporal sequences of images with random point spread functions and applied to adaptive imaging in astronomy. The tasks considered include both detection and estimation, and the observers are the optimal linear discriminant (Hotelling observer) and the optimal linear estimator (Wiener). A general theory of first- and second-order spatiotemporal statistics in adaptive optics is developed. It is shown that the covariance matrix can be rigorously decomposed into three terms representing the effect of measurement noise, random point spread function, and random nature of the astronomical scene. Figures of merit are developed, and computational methods are discussed. PMID:17106464

  13. Groundwater Quality Assessment for Waste Management Area U: First Determination

    SciTech Connect

    Hodges, Floyd N.; Chou, Charissa J.

    2000-08-04

    As a result of the most recent recalculation one of the indicator parameters, specific conductance, exceeded its background value in downgradient well 299-W19-41, triggering a change from detection monitoring to groundwater quality assessment program. The major contributors to the higher specific conductance are nonhazardous constituents (i.e., sodium, calcium, magnesium, chloride, sulfate, and bicarbonate). Nitrate, chromium, and technetium-99 are present and are increasing; however, they are significantly below their drinking waster standards. Interpretation of groundwater monitoring data indicates that both the nonhazardous constituents causing elevated specific conductance in groundwater and the tank waste constituents present in groundwater at the waste management area are a result of surface water infiltration in the southern portion of the facility. There is evidence for both upgradient and waste management area sources for observed nitrate concentrations. There is no indication of an upgradient source for the observed chromium and technetium-99.

  14. Objective assessment of image quality. IV. Application to adaptive optics.

    PubMed

    Barrett, Harrison H; Myers, Kyle J; Devaney, Nicholas; Dainty, Christopher

    2006-12-01

    The methodology of objective assessment, which defines image quality in terms of the performance of specific observers on specific tasks of interest, is extended to temporal sequences of images with random point spread functions and applied to adaptive imaging in astronomy. The tasks considered include both detection and estimation, and the observers are the optimal linear discriminant (Hotelling observer) and the optimal linear estimator (Wiener). A general theory of first- and second-order spatiotemporal statistics in adaptive optics is developed. It is shown that the covariance matrix can be rigorously decomposed into three terms representing the effect of measurement noise, random point spread function, and random nature of the astronomical scene. Figures of merit are developed, and computational methods are discussed.

  15. Objective assessment of image quality. IV. Application to adaptive optics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barrett, Harrison H.; Myers, Kyle J.; Devaney, Nicholas; Dainty, Christopher

    2006-12-01

    The methodology of objective assessment, which defines image quality in terms of the performance of specific observers on specific tasks of interest, is extended to temporal sequences of images with random point spread functions and applied to adaptive imaging in astronomy. The tasks considered include both detection and estimation, and the observers are the optimal linear discriminant (Hotelling observer) and the optimal linear estimator (Wiener). A general theory of first- and second-order spatiotemporal statistics in adaptive optics is developed. It is shown that the covariance matrix can be rigorously decomposed into three terms representing the effect of measurement noise, random point spread function, and random nature of the astronomical scene. Figures of merit are developed, and computational methods are discussed.

  16. Image analysis for dental bone quality assessment using CBCT imaging

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Suprijanto; Epsilawati, L.; Hajarini, M. S.; Juliastuti, E.; Susanti, H.

    2016-03-01

    Cone beam computerized tomography (CBCT) is one of X-ray imaging modalities that are applied in dentistry. Its modality can visualize the oral region in 3D and in a high resolution. CBCT jaw image has potential information for the assessment of bone quality that often used for pre-operative implant planning. We propose comparison method based on normalized histogram (NH) on the region of inter-dental septum and premolar teeth. Furthermore, the NH characteristic from normal and abnormal bone condition are compared and analyzed. Four test parameters are proposed, i.e. the difference between teeth and bone average intensity (s), the ratio between bone and teeth average intensity (n) of NH, the difference between teeth and bone peak value (Δp) of NH, and the ratio between teeth and bone of NH range (r). The results showed that n, s, and Δp have potential to be the classification parameters of dental calcium density.

  17. Quality assessment in nursing home facilities: measuring customer satisfaction.

    PubMed

    Mostyn, M M; Race, K E; Seibert, J H; Johnson, M

    2000-01-01

    A national study designed to assess the reliability and validity of a nursing home customer satisfaction survey is summarized. One hundred fifty-nine facilities participated, each responsible for the distribution and collection of 200 questionnaires randomly sent to the home of the resident's responsible party. A total of 9053 completed questionnaires were returned, for an average adjusted response rate of 53%. The factor analysis identified 4 scales: Comfort and Cleanliness, Nursing, Food Services, and Facility Care and Services, each with high reliability. Based on a multiple regression analysis, the scales were shown to have good criterion-related validity, accounting for 64% of the variance in overall quality ratings. Comparisons based on select characteristics indicated significantly different satisfaction ratings among facilities. The results are interpreted as providing evidence for the construct validity of a multidimensional customer satisfaction scale with measured reliability and criterion-related validity. Moreover, the scale can be used to differentiate satisfaction levels among facilities.

  18. Assessing groundwater quality for irrigation using indicator kriging method

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Delbari, Masoomeh; Amiri, Meysam; Motlagh, Masoud Bahraini

    2016-11-01

    One of the key parameters influencing sprinkler irrigation performance is water quality. In this study, the spatial variability of groundwater quality parameters (EC, SAR, Na+, Cl-, HCO3 - and pH) was investigated by geostatistical methods and the most suitable areas for implementation of sprinkler irrigation systems in terms of water quality are determined. The study was performed in Fasa county of Fars province using 91 water samples. Results indicated that all parameters are moderately to strongly spatially correlated over the study area. The spatial distribution of pH and HCO3 - was mapped using ordinary kriging. The probability of concentrations of EC, SAR, Na+ and Cl- exceeding a threshold limit in groundwater was obtained using indicator kriging (IK). The experimental indicator semivariograms were often fitted well by a spherical model for SAR, EC, Na+ and Cl-. For HCO3 - and pH, an exponential model was fitted to the experimental semivariograms. Probability maps showed that the risk of EC, SAR, Na+ and Cl- exceeding the given critical threshold is higher in lower half of the study area. The most proper agricultural lands for sprinkler irrigation implementation were identified by evaluating all probability maps. The suitable areas for sprinkler irrigation design were determined to be 25,240 hectares, which is about 34 percent of total agricultural lands and are located in northern and eastern parts. Overall the results of this study showed that IK is an appropriate approach for risk assessment of groundwater pollution, which is useful for a proper groundwater resources management.

  19. Drinking water quality assessment in Southern Sindh (Pakistan).

    PubMed

    Memon, Mehrunisa; Soomro, Mohammed Saleh; Akhtar, Mohammad Saleem; Memon, Kazi Suleman

    2011-06-01

    The southern Sindh province of Pakistan adjoins the Arabian Sea coast where drinking water quality is deteriorating due to dumping of industrial and urban waste and use of agrochemicals and yet has limited fresh water resources. The study assessed the drinking water quality of canal, shallow pumps, dug wells, and water supply schemes from the administrative districts of Thatta, Badin, and Thar by measuring physical, chemical, and biological (total coliform) quality parameters. All four water bodies (dug wells, shallow pumps canal water, and water supply schemes) exceeded WHO MPL for turbidity (24%, 28%, 96%, 69%), coliform (96%, 77%, 92%, 81%), and electrical conductivity (100%, 99%, 44%, 63%), respectively. However, the turbidity was lower in underground water, i.e., 24% and 28% in dug wells and shallow pumps as compared to open water, i.e., 96% and 69% in canal and water supply schemes, respectively. In dug wells and shallow pumps, limits for TDS, alkalinity, hardness, and sodium exceeded, respectively, by 63% and 33%; 59% and 70%, 40% and 27%, and 78% and 26%. Sodium was major problem in dug wells and shallow pumps of district Thar and considerable percent in shallow pumps of Badin. Iron was major problem in all water bodies of district Badin ranging from 50% to 69% and to some extent in open waters of Thatta. Other parameters as pH, copper, manganese, zinc, and phosphorus were within standard permissible limits of World Health Organization. Some common diseases found in the study area were gastroenteritis, diarrhea and vomiting, kidney, and skin problems.

  20. Criteria and markers for protein quality assessment - a review.

    PubMed

    Tome, Daniel

    2012-08-01

    Dietary proteins are found in animal products, plant products and single-cell organisms. Proteins are present in variable proportions in these different food sources and the different proteins also differ in their amino acid composition, dietary indispensable amino acid content and physico-chemical properties. Different criteria can be used to define dietary protein requirements and different markers can be used to assess nutritional protein quality according to the criteria used for protein requirement estimation. The current approach to determining protein requirements is related to nitrogen balance and the dietary indispensable amino acid score approach relates protein quality to the capacity of protein to allow reaching nitrogen balance by providing nitrogen and indispensable amino acids. A second approach considers more directly protein nitrogen utilization by the body and includes measurement of protein digestibility and of the efficiency of dietary nitrogen retention at maintenance or for protein deposition at the whole body level or in more specific body areas. Another approach is related to protein turnover and protein synthesis in relation to maintenance and/or efficiency for deposition or development (growth) at the whole body level or for different and more specific target tissues such as muscle or bone. Lastly, protein quality can also be evaluated from different markers used as risk factors for metabolic dysfunction and disorders related for instance to insulin resistance, diabetes and obesity or cardio-vascular disease. The accuracy and relevance of these different approaches is discussed regarding the capacity of the different protein sources (i.e. animal as meat, milk or eggs, legume as soya or pea, or cereal as wheat or rice) to satisfy protein requirements according to these different criteria and markers.