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Sample records for quality assessment decision

  1. 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…

  2. Assessing decision quality in patient-centred care requires a preference-sensitive measure.

    PubMed

    Kaltoft, Mette; Cunich, Michelle; Salkeld, Glenn; Dowie, Jack

    2014-04-01

    A theory-based instrument for measuring the quality of decisions made using any form of decision technology, including both decision-aided and unaided clinical consultations is required to enable person- and patient-centred care and to respond positively to individual heterogeneity in the value aspects of decision making. Current instruments using the term 'decision quality' have adopted a decision- and thus condition-specific approach. We argue that patient-centred care requires decision quality to be regarded as both preference-sensitive across multiple relevant criteria and generic across all conditions and decisions. MyDecisionQuality is grounded in prescriptive multi criteria decision analysis and employs a simple expected value algorithm to calculate a score for the quality of a decision that combines, in the clinical case, the patient's individual preferences for eight quality criteria (expressed as importance weights) and their ratings of the decision just taken on each of these criteria (expressed as performance rates). It thus provides an index of decision quality that encompasses both these aspects. It also provides patients with help in prioritizing quality criteria for future decision making by calculating, for each criterion, the Incremental Value of Perfect Rating, that is, the increase in their decision quality score that would result if their performance rating on the criterion had been 100%, weightings unchanged. MyDecisionQuality, which is a web-based generic and preference-sensitive instrument, can constitute a key patient-reported measure of the quality of the decision-making process. It can provide the basis for future decision improvement, especially when the clinician (or other stakeholders) completes the equivalent instrument and the extent and nature of concordance and discordance can be established. Apart from its role in decision preparation and evaluation, it can also provide real time and relevant documentation for the patient's record.

  3. Assessing decision quality in patient-centred care requires a preference-sensitive measure

    PubMed Central

    Kaltoft, Mette; Cunich, Michelle; Salkeld, Glenn; Dowie, Jack

    2014-01-01

    A theory-based instrument for measuring the quality of decisions made using any form of decision technology, including both decision-aided and unaided clinical consultations is required to enable person- and patient-centred care and to respond positively to individual heterogeneity in the value aspects of decision making. Current instruments using the term ‘decision quality’ have adopted a decision- and thus condition-specific approach. We argue that patient-centred care requires decision quality to be regarded as both preference-sensitive across multiple relevant criteria and generic across all conditions and decisions. MyDecisionQuality is grounded in prescriptive multi criteria decision analysis and employs a simple expected value algorithm to calculate a score for the quality of a decision that combines, in the clinical case, the patient’s individual preferences for eight quality criteria (expressed as importance weights) and their ratings of the decision just taken on each of these criteria (expressed as performance rates). It thus provides an index of decision quality that encompasses both these aspects. It also provides patients with help in prioritizing quality criteria for future decision making by calculating, for each criterion, the Incremental Value of Perfect Rating, that is, the increase in their decision quality score that would result if their performance rating on the criterion had been 100%, weightings unchanged. MyDecisionQuality, which is a web-based generic and preference-sensitive instrument, can constitute a key patient-reported measure of the quality of the decision-making process. It can provide the basis for future decision improvement, especially when the clinician (or other stakeholders) completes the equivalent instrument and the extent and nature of concordance and discordance can be established. Apart from its role in decision preparation and evaluation, it can also provide real time and relevant documentation for the patient

  4. Ecosystem valuation: a sequential decision support system and quality assessment issues.

    PubMed

    Turner, R Kerry; Morse-Jones, Sian; Fisher, Brendan

    2010-01-01

    Understanding the economic value of nature and the services it provides to humanity has become increasingly important for local, national, and global policy and decision making. It has become obvious that quantifying and integrating these services into decision making will be crucial for sustainable development. Problems arise in that it is difficult to obtain meaningful values for the goods and services that ecosystems provide and for which there is no formal market. A wide range of ecosystem services fall into this category. Additional problems arise when economic methods are applied inappropriately and when the importance of ecosystem maintenance for human welfare is underestimated. In this article we identify a place for monetary valuation within the pluralistic approach supported by ecological economics and assess progress to date in the application of environmental valuation to ecosystem service provision. We first review definitions of ecosystem services in order to make an operational link to valuation methods. We then discuss the spatially explicit nature of ecosystem services provision and benefits capture. We highlight the importance of valuing marginal changes and the role for macroscale valuation, nonlinearities in service benefits, and the significance of nonconvexities (threshold effects). We also review guidance on valuation studies quality assurance, and discuss the problems inherent in the methodology as exposed by the findings of behavioral economics, as well as with benefits transfer--the most common way valuation studies are applied in the policy process. We argue for a sequential decision support system that can lead to a more integrated and rigorous approach to environmental valuation and biophysical measurement of ecosystem services. This system itself then needs to be encompassed within a more comprehensive multicriteria assessment dialogue and process.

  5. Accepting uncertainty, assessing risk: decision quality in managing wildfire, forest resource values, and new technology

    Treesearch

    Jeffrey G. Borchers

    2005-01-01

    The risks, uncertainties, and social conflicts surrounding uncharacteristic wildfire and forest resource values have defied conventional approaches to planning and decision-making. Paradoxically, the adoption of technological innovations such as risk assessment, decision analysis, and landscape simulation models by land management organizations has been limited. The...

  6. Surface water vulnerability assessment applying the integrity model as a decision support system for quality improvement

    SciTech Connect

    Mirauda, Domenica; Ostoich, Marco

    2011-04-15

    The implementation of the Water Framework Directive (WFD) 2000/60/EC, aimed at achieving a 'Good' Ecological Status of surface water bodies by 2015, indicates the adoption of a River Basin Management approach by using a model which works as a support for decision making. This work has applied the suggestions put forward by the WFD by means of a mathematical model called the Integrity Model. This represents valid support when assessing the efficiency of planned interventions which may directly or indirectly play a role in enhancing the quality of surface waters at the basin scale. Herein the results of a preliminary application limited to just two indexes on the Bacchiglione river basin, located in Northern Italy, are both presented and compared with the results of institutional monitoring activities in compliance with set technical regulations. The proposed model appears to be useful when carrying out Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) procedures in accordance with Directive 2001/42/EC concerning water management and protection plans as well as for the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) procedure to be carried out on the interventions identified.

  7. Informed Decision Making: Assessment of the Quality of Physician Communication about Prostate Cancer Diagnosis and Treatment.

    PubMed

    Holmes-Rovner, Margaret; Montgomery, Jeffrey S; Rovner, David R; Scherer, Laura D; Whitfield, Jesse; Kahn, Valerie C; Merkle, Edgar C; Ubel, Peter A; Fagerlin, Angela

    2015-11-01

    Little is known about how physicians present diagnosis and treatment planning in routine practice in preference-sensitive treatment decisions. We evaluated completeness and quality of informed decision making in localized prostate cancer post biopsy encounters. We analyzed audio-recorded office visits of 252 men with presumed localized prostate cancer (Gleason 6 and Gleason 7 scores) who were seeing 45 physicians at 4 Veterans Affairs Medical Centers. Data were collected between September 2008 and May 2012 in a trial of 2 decision aids (DAs). Braddock's previously validated Informed Decision Making (IDM) system was used to measure quality. Latent variable models for ordinal data examined the relationship of IDM score to treatment received. Mean IDM score showed modest quality (7.61±2.45 out of 18) and high variability. Treatment choice and risks and benefits were discussed in approximately 95% of encounters. However, in more than one-third of encounters, physicians provided a partial set of treatment options and omitted surveillance as a choice. Informing quality was greater in patients treated with surveillance (β = 1.1, p = .04). Gleason score (7 vs 6) and lower age were often cited as reasons to exclude surveillance. Patient preferences were elicited in the majority of cases, but not used to guide treatment planning. Encounter time was modestly correlated with IDM score (r = 0.237, p = .01). DA type was not associated with IDM score. Physicians informed patients of options and risks and benefits, but infrequently engaged patients in core shared decision-making processes. Despite patients having received DAs, physicians rarely provided an opportunity for preference-driven decision making. More attention to the underused patient decision-making and engagement elements could result in improved shared decision making. © The Author(s) 2015.

  8. Ten years of the International Patient Decision Aid Standards Collaboration: evolution of the core dimensions for assessing the quality of patient decision aids

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    In 2003, the International Patient Decision Aid Standards (IPDAS) Collaboration was established to enhance the quality and effectiveness of patient decision aids by establishing an evidence-informed framework for improving their content, development, implementation, and evaluation. Over this 10 year period, the Collaboration has established: a) the background document on 12 core dimensions to inform the original modified Delphi process to establish the IPDAS checklist (74 items); b) the valid and reliable IPDAS instrument (47 items); and c) the IPDAS qualifying (6 items), certifying (6 items + 4 items for screening), and quality criteria (28 items). The objective of this paper is to describe the evolution of the IPDAS Collaboration and discuss the standardized process used to update the background documents on the theoretical rationales, evidence and emerging issues underlying the 12 core dimensions for assessing the quality of patient decision aids. PMID:24624947

  9. Ten years of the International Patient Decision Aid Standards Collaboration: evolution of the core dimensions for assessing the quality of patient decision aids.

    PubMed

    Volk, Robert J; Llewellyn-Thomas, Hilary; Stacey, Dawn; Elwyn, Glyn

    2013-01-01

    In 2003, the International Patient Decision Aid Standards (IPDAS) Collaboration was established to enhance the quality and effectiveness of patient decision aids by establishing an evidence-informed framework for improving their content, development, implementation, and evaluation. Over this 10 year period, the Collaboration has established: a) the background document on 12 core dimensions to inform the original modified Delphi process to establish the IPDAS checklist (74 items); b) the valid and reliable IPDAS instrument (47 items); and c) the IPDAS qualifying (6 items), certifying (6 items + 4 items for screening), and quality criteria (28 items). The objective of this paper is to describe the evolution of the IPDAS Collaboration and discuss the standardized process used to update the background documents on the theoretical rationales, evidence and emerging issues underlying the 12 core dimensions for assessing the quality of patient decision aids.

  10. Development of computer automated decision support system for surface water quality assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sharma, Asheesh; Naidu, Madhuri; Sargaonkar, Aabha

    2013-02-01

    The Overall Index of Pollution (OIP) is a single number that expresses the overall water quality by integrating measurements of 14 different physicochemical, toxicological, and bacteriological water quality parameters. It provides a simple and concise method for water quality classification as, 'Excellent', 'Acceptable', 'Slightly Polluted', 'Polluted', and 'Heavily Polluted'. OIP values range from 0 to 16. A high OIP value signals poor water quality, while a low value signals good water quality based on the classification scheme developed for India. In this paper, we present a computer-automated, user-friendly, and standalone Surface Water Quality Assessment Tool (SWQAT), which calculates OIP values and displays it on Google map. The software is developed in VB.Net and SQL database. The software application is demonstrated through water quality assessment of two rivers of India, namely Cauvery and Tungabhadra. OIP values are estimated at 10 sampling stations on the river Cauvery and at eight sampling stations on the river Tungabhadra. The Cauvery river OIP scores in the range 0.85-7.91 while for Tungabhadra river, it is in range 2.08 to 8.97. The results are useful to analyze the variations in the water quality of different sites at different times. SWQAT improves understanding of general water quality issues, communicates water quality status, and draws the need for and effectiveness of protection measures.

  11. The Development and Validation of a Generic Instrument, QoDoS, for Assessing the Quality of Decision Making.

    PubMed

    Donelan, Ronan; Walker, Stuart; Salek, Sam

    2016-01-01

    The impact of decision-making during the development and the regulatory review of medicines greatly influences the delivery of new medicinal products. Currently, there is no generic instrument that can be used to assess the quality of decision-making. This study describes the development of the Quality of Decision-Making Orientation Scheme QoDoS(©) instrument for appraising the quality of decision-making. Semi-structured interviews about decision-making were carried out with 29 senior decision makers from the pharmaceutical industry (10), regulatory authorities (9) and contract research organizations (10). The interviews offered a qualified understanding of the subjective decision-making approach, influences, behaviors and other factors that impact such processes for individuals and organizations involved in the delivery of new medicines. Thematic analysis of the transcribed interviews was carried out using NVivo8® software. Content validity was carried out using qualitative and quantitative data by an expert panel, which led to the developmental version of the QoDoS. Further psychometric evaluations were performed, including factor analysis, item reduction, reliability testing and construct validation. The thematic analysis of the interviews yielded a 94-item initial version of the QoDoS(©) with a 5-point Likert scale. The instrument was tested for content validity using a panel of experts for language clarity, completeness, relevance and scaling, resulting in a favorable agreement by panel members with an intra-class correlation coefficient value of 0.89 (95% confidence interval = 0.56, 0.99). A 76-item QoDoS(©) (version 2) emerged from content validation. Factor analysis produced a 47-item measure with four domains. The 47-item QoDoS(©) (version 3) showed high internal consistency (n = 120, Cronbach's alpha = 0.89), high reproducibility (n = 20, intra-class correlation = 0.77) and a mean completion time of 10 min. Reliability testing and construct

  12. The Development and Validation of a Generic Instrument, QoDoS, for Assessing the Quality of Decision Making

    PubMed Central

    Donelan, Ronan; Walker, Stuart; Salek, Sam

    2016-01-01

    Introduction: The impact of decision-making during the development and the regulatory review of medicines greatly influences the delivery of new medicinal products. Currently, there is no generic instrument that can be used to assess the quality of decision-making. This study describes the development of the Quality of Decision-Making Orientation Scheme QoDoS© instrument for appraising the quality of decision-making. Methods: Semi-structured interviews about decision-making were carried out with 29 senior decision makers from the pharmaceutical industry (10), regulatory authorities (9) and contract research organizations (10). The interviews offered a qualified understanding of the subjective decision-making approach, influences, behaviors and other factors that impact such processes for individuals and organizations involved in the delivery of new medicines. Thematic analysis of the transcribed interviews was carried out using NVivo8® software. Content validity was carried out using qualitative and quantitative data by an expert panel, which led to the developmental version of the QoDoS. Further psychometric evaluations were performed, including factor analysis, item reduction, reliability testing and construct validation. Results: The thematic analysis of the interviews yielded a 94-item initial version of the QoDoS© with a 5-point Likert scale. The instrument was tested for content validity using a panel of experts for language clarity, completeness, relevance and scaling, resulting in a favorable agreement by panel members with an intra-class correlation coefficient value of 0.89 (95% confidence interval = 0.56, 0.99). A 76-item QoDoS© (version 2) emerged from content validation. Factor analysis produced a 47-item measure with four domains. The 47-item QoDoS© (version 3) showed high internal consistency (n = 120, Cronbach's alpha = 0.89), high reproducibility (n = 20, intra-class correlation = 0.77) and a mean completion time of 10 min. Reliability testing

  13. Assessment of air quality in Haora River basin using fuzzy multiple-attribute decision making techniques.

    PubMed

    Singh, Ajit Pratap; Chakrabarti, Sumanta; Kumar, Sumit; Singh, Anjaney

    2017-08-01

    This paper deals with assessment of air quality in Haora River basin using two techniques. Initially, air quality indices were evaluated using a modified EPA method. The indices were also evaluated using a fuzzy comprehensive assessment (FCA) method. The results obtained from the fuzzy comprehensive assessment method were compared to that obtained from the modified EPA method. To illustrate the applicability of the methodology proposed herein, a case study has been presented. Air samples have been collected at 10 sampling sites located along Haora River. Six important air pollutants, namely, carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide, suspended particulate matter (SPM), PM10, and lead, were monitored continuously, and air quality maps were generated on the GIS platform. Comparison of the methodologies has clearly highlighted superiority and robustness of the fuzzy comprehensive assessment method in determining air quality indices under study. It has effectively addressed the inherent uncertainties involved in the evaluation, modeling, and interpretation of sampling data, which was beyond the scope of the traditional weighted approaches employed otherwise. The FCA method is robust and prepares a credible platform of air quality evaluation and identification, in face of the uncertainties that remain eclipsed in the traditional approaches like the modified EPA method. The insights gained through the present study are believed to be of pivotal significance in guiding the development and implementation of effective environmental remedial action plans in the study area.

  14. Probabilistic assessment of a containment vessel's survivability to facilitate decision making and enhance quality assurance

    SciTech Connect

    Dolin, Ronald M.

    2001-01-01

    This paper presents a probabilistic approach for assessing the design and safety of an HSLA-100 Steel Confinement Vessel for particular types of detonations. Likelihood of failure for three different scenarios is considered. They are the likelihood a fragment, (1) penetrates half the containment vessel's thickness, (2) perforates through the containment vessel, and (3) perforates a secondary safety vessel given it's perforated the containment vessel. Uncertainties to be quantified include a fragment's geometry, orientation, and velocity. The governing equation for the likelihood of failure is the probability a large enough fragment exits, that it travels fast enough, and is in the proper orientation. The mathematical formulation of this probability expression is presented. The likelihood of failure is based on existing experimental evidence, theory, and expert judgment. Simulations are performed using Monte Carlo and Latin Hypercube sampling. The assessment model is used to verify and validate numerical predictions in the well-defined-well-documented, (WDWD) domain. Using Bayesian methods, confidence in numerical predictions is assessed within the WDWD domain so inferences beyond the domain can be made with confidence using only numerical analysis. The assessment model's influence diagram is evolved into a decision analysis model. Validation problems are presented to exercise the decision model.

  15. A Web-Based Decision Support System for Assessing Regional Water-Quality Conditions and Management Actions

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Booth, N.L.; Everman, E.J.; Kuo, I.-L.; Sprague, L.; Murphy, L.

    2011-01-01

    The U.S. Geological Survey National Water Quality Assessment Program has completed a number of water-quality prediction models for nitrogen and phosphorus for the conterminous United States as well as for regional areas of the nation. In addition to estimating water-quality conditions at unmonitored streams, the calibrated SPAtially Referenced Regressions On Watershed attributes (SPARROW) models can be used to produce estimates of yield, flow-weighted concentration, or load of constituents in water under various land-use condition, change, or resource management scenarios. A web-based decision support infrastructure has been developed to provide access to SPARROW simulation results on stream water-quality conditions and to offer sophisticated scenario testing capabilities for research and water-quality planning via a graphical user interface with familiar controls. The SPARROW decision support system (DSS) is delivered through a web browser over an Internet connection, making it widely accessible to the public in a format that allows users to easily display water-quality conditions and to describe, test, and share modeled scenarios of future conditions. SPARROW models currently supported by the DSS are based on the modified digital versions of the 1:500,000-scale River Reach File (RF1) and 1:100,000-scale National Hydrography Dataset (medium-resolution, NHDPlus) stream networks. ?? 2011 American Water Resources Association. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.

  16. A Web-Based Decision Support System for Assessing Regional Water-Quality Conditions and Management Actions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Booth, N. L.; Everman, E.; Kuo, I.; Sprague, L.; Murphy, L.

    2011-12-01

    A new web-based decision support system has been developed as part of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) National Water Quality Assessment Program's (NAWQA) effort to provide ready access to Spatially Referenced Regressions On Watershed attributes (SPARROW) results of stream water-quality conditions and to offer sophisticated scenario testing capabilities for research and water-quality planning via an intuitive graphical user interface with a map-based display. The SPARROW Decision Support System (DSS) is delivered through a web browser over an Internet connection, making it widely accessible to the public in a format that allows users to easily display water-quality conditions, distribution of nutrient sources, nutrient delivery to downstream waterbodies, and simulations of altered nutrient inputs including atmospheric and agricultural sources. The DSS offers other features for analysis including various background map layers, model output exports, and the ability to save and share prediction scenarios. SPARROW models currently supported by the DSS are based on the modified digital versions of the 1:500,000-scale River Reach File (RF1) and 1:100,000-scale National Hydrography Dataset (medium-resolution, NHDPlus) stream networks. The underlying modeling framework and server infrastructure illustrate innovations in the information technology and geosciences fields for delivering SPARROW model predictions over the web by performing intensive model computations and map visualizations of the predicted conditions within the stream network.

  17. Evaluating Quality of Decision-Making Processes in Medicines' Development, Regulatory Review, and Health Technology Assessment: A Systematic Review of the Literature

    PubMed Central

    Bujar, Magdalena; McAuslane, Neil; Walker, Stuart R.; Salek, Sam

    2017-01-01

    Introduction: Although pharmaceutical companies, regulatory authorities, and health technology assessment (HTA) agencies have been increasingly using decision-making frameworks, it is not certain whether these enable better quality decision making. This could be addressed by formally evaluating the quality of decision-making process within those organizations. The aim of this literature review was to identify current techniques (tools, questionnaires, surveys, and studies) for measuring the quality of the decision-making process across the three stakeholders. Methods: Using MEDLINE, Web of Knowledge, and other Internet-based search engines, a literature review was performed to systematically identify techniques for assessing quality of decision making in medicines development, regulatory review, and HTA. A structured search was applied using key words and a secondary review was carried out. In addition, the measurement properties of each technique were assessed and compared. Ten Quality Decision-Making Practices (QDMPs) developed previously were then used as a framework for the evaluation of techniques identified in the review. Due to the variation in studies identified, meta-analysis was inappropriate. Results: This review identified 13 techniques, where 7 were developed specifically to assess decision making in medicines' development, regulatory review, or HTA; 2 examined corporate decision making, and 4 general decision making. Regarding how closely each technique conformed to the 10 QDMPs, the 13 techniques assessed a median of 6 QDMPs, with a mode of 3 QDMPs. Only 2 techniques evaluated all 10 QDMPs, namely the Organizational IQ and the Quality of Decision Making Orientation Scheme (QoDoS), of which only one technique, QoDoS could be applied to assess decision making of both individuals and organizations, and it possessed generalizability to capture issues relevant to companies as well as regulatory authorities. Conclusion: This review confirmed a general

  18. Evaluating Quality of Decision-Making Processes in Medicines' Development, Regulatory Review, and Health Technology Assessment: A Systematic Review of the Literature.

    PubMed

    Bujar, Magdalena; McAuslane, Neil; Walker, Stuart R; Salek, Sam

    2017-01-01

    Introduction: Although pharmaceutical companies, regulatory authorities, and health technology assessment (HTA) agencies have been increasingly using decision-making frameworks, it is not certain whether these enable better quality decision making. This could be addressed by formally evaluating the quality of decision-making process within those organizations. The aim of this literature review was to identify current techniques (tools, questionnaires, surveys, and studies) for measuring the quality of the decision-making process across the three stakeholders. Methods: Using MEDLINE, Web of Knowledge, and other Internet-based search engines, a literature review was performed to systematically identify techniques for assessing quality of decision making in medicines development, regulatory review, and HTA. A structured search was applied using key words and a secondary review was carried out. In addition, the measurement properties of each technique were assessed and compared. Ten Quality Decision-Making Practices (QDMPs) developed previously were then used as a framework for the evaluation of techniques identified in the review. Due to the variation in studies identified, meta-analysis was inappropriate. Results: This review identified 13 techniques, where 7 were developed specifically to assess decision making in medicines' development, regulatory review, or HTA; 2 examined corporate decision making, and 4 general decision making. Regarding how closely each technique conformed to the 10 QDMPs, the 13 techniques assessed a median of 6 QDMPs, with a mode of 3 QDMPs. Only 2 techniques evaluated all 10 QDMPs, namely the Organizational IQ and the Quality of Decision Making Orientation Scheme (QoDoS), of which only one technique, QoDoS could be applied to assess decision making of both individuals and organizations, and it possessed generalizability to capture issues relevant to companies as well as regulatory authorities. Conclusion: This review confirmed a general

  19. Testing an advanced satellite technique for dust detection as a decision support system for the air quality assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Falconieri, Alfredo; Filizzola, Carolina; Femiano, Rossella; Marchese, Francesco; Sannazzaro, Filomena; Pergola, Nicola; Tramutoli, Valerio; Di Muro, Ersilia; Divietri, Mariella; Crisci, Anna Maria; Lovallo, Michele; Mangiamele, Lucia; Vaccaro, Maria Pia; Palma, Achille

    2014-05-01

    In order to correctly apply the European directive for air quality (2008/50/CE), local Authorities are often requested to discriminate the possible origin (natural/anthropic) of anomalous concentration of pollutants in the air (art.20 Directive 2008/50/CE). In this framework, it's been focused on PM10 and PM2,5 concentrations and sources. In fact, depending on their origin, appropriate counter-measures can be taken devoted to prevent their production (e.g. by traffic restriction) or simply to reduce their impact on citizen health (e.g. information campaigns). In this context suitable satellite techniques can be used in order to identify natural sources (particularly Saharan dust, but also volcanic ash or forest fire smoke) that can be responsible of over-threshold concentration of PM10/2,5 in populated areas. In the framework of the NIBS (Networking and Internationalization of Basilicata Space Technologies) project, funded by the Basilicata Region within the ERDF 2007-2013 program, the School of Engineering of University of Basilicata, the Institute of Methodologies for Environmental Analysis of National Research Council (IMAA-CNR) and the Regional Agency for the Protection of the Environment of Basilicata Region (ARPAB) have started a collaboration devoted to assess the potential of the use of advanced satellite techniques for Saharan dust events identification to support ARPAB activities related to the application of the European directive for air quality (2008/50/CE) in Basilicata region. In such a joint activity, the Robust Satellite Technique (RST) approach has been assessed and tested as a decision support system for monitoring and evaluating air quality at local and regional level. In particular, RST-DUST products, derived by processing high temporal resolution data provided by SEVIRI (Spinning Enhanced Visible and Infrared Imager) sensor on board Meteosat Second Generation platforms, have been analysed together with PM10 measurements performed by the ground

  20. Quality improvement in multidisciplinary cancer teams: an investigation of teamwork and clinical decision-making and cross-validation of assessments.

    PubMed

    Lamb, B W; Sevdalis, N; Mostafid, H; Vincent, C; Green, J S A

    2011-12-01

    Teamworking and clinical decision-making are important in multidisciplinary cancer teams (MDTs). Our objective is to assess the quality of information presentation and MDT members' contribution to decision-making via expert observation and self-report, aiming to cross-validate the two methods and assess the insight of MDT members into their own team performance. Behaviors were scored using (i) a validated observational tool employing Likert scales with objective anchors, and (ii) a 29-question online self-report tool. Data were collected from observation of 164 cases in five MDTs, and 47 surveys from MDT members (response rate 70%). Presentation of information (case history, radiological, pathological, comorbidities, psychosocial, and patients' views) and quality of contribution to decision-making of MDT members (surgeons, oncologists, radiologists, pathologists, nurses, and MDT coordinators) were analyzed via descriptive statistics and the Jonckheere-Terpstra test. Correlation between observational and self-report assessments was assessed with Spearman's correlations. Quality of information presentation: Case histories and radiology information rated highest; patients' views and comorbidities/psychosocial issues rated lowest (observed: Z = 14.80, P ≤ 0.001; self-report: Z = 3.70, P < 0.001). Contribution to decision-making: Surgeons and oncologists rated highest, nurses and MDT coordinators rated lowest, and others in between (observed: Z = 20.00, P ≤ 0.001; self-report: Z = 8.10, P < 0.001). Correlations between observational and self-report assessments: Median Spearman's rho = 0.74 (range = 0.66-0.91; P < 0.05). The quality of teamworking and clinical decision-making in MDTs can reliably be assessed using observational and self-report metrics. MDT members have good insight into their own team performance. Such robust assessment methods could provide the basis of a toolkit for MDT team evaluation and improvement.

  1. Assessing the Hydrologic Performance of the EPA's Nonpoint Source Water Quality Assessment Decision Support Tool Using North American Land Data Assimilation System (Products)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lee, S.; Ni-Meister, W.; Toll, D.; Nigro, J.; Guiterrez-Magness, A.; Engman, T.

    2010-01-01

    The accuracy of streamflow predictions in the EPA's BASINS (Better Assessment Science Integrating Point and Nonpoint Sources) decision support tool is affected by the sparse meteorological data contained in BASINS. The North American Land Data Assimilation System (NLDAS) data with high spatial and temporal resolutions provide an alternative to the NOAA National Climatic Data Center (NCDC)'s station data. This study assessed the improvement of streamflow prediction of the Hydrological Simulation Program-FORTRAN (HSPF) model contained within BASINS using the NLDAS 118 degree hourly precipitation and evapotranspiration estimates in seven watersheds of the Chesapeake Bay region. Our results demonstrated consistent improvements of daily streamflow predictions in five of the seven watersheds when NLDAS precipitation and evapotranspiration data was incorporated into BASINS. The improvement of using the NLDAS data is significant when watershed's meteorological station is either far away or not in a similar climatic region. When the station is nearby, using the NLDAS data produces similar results. The correlation coefficients of the analyses using the NLDAS data were greater than 0.8, the Nash-Sutcliffe (NS) model fit efficiency greater than 0.6, and the error in the water balance was less than 5%. Our analyses also showed that the streamflow improvements were mainly contributed by the NLDAS's precipitation data and that the improvement from using NLDAS's evapotranspiration data was not significant; partially due to the constraints of current BASINS-HSPF settings. However, NLDAS's evapotranspiration data did improve the baseflow prediction. This study demonstrates the NLDAS data has the potential to improve stream flow predictions, thus aid the water quality assessment in the EPA nonpoint water quality assessment decision tool.

  2. Assessing the Hydrologic Performance of the EPA's Nonpoint Source Water Quality Assessment Decision Support Tool Using North American Land Data Assimilation System (Products)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lee, S.; Ni-Meister, W.; Toll, D.; Nigro, J.; Guiterrez-Magness, A.; Engman, T.

    2010-01-01

    The accuracy of streamflow predictions in the EPA's BASINS (Better Assessment Science Integrating Point and Nonpoint Sources) decision support tool is affected by the sparse meteorological data contained in BASINS. The North American Land Data Assimilation System (NLDAS) data with high spatial and temporal resolutions provide an alternative to the NOAA National Climatic Data Center (NCDC)'s station data. This study assessed the improvement of streamflow prediction of the Hydrological Simulation Program-FORTRAN (HSPF) model contained within BASINS using the NLDAS 118 degree hourly precipitation and evapotranspiration estimates in seven watersheds of the Chesapeake Bay region. Our results demonstrated consistent improvements of daily streamflow predictions in five of the seven watersheds when NLDAS precipitation and evapotranspiration data was incorporated into BASINS. The improvement of using the NLDAS data is significant when watershed's meteorological station is either far away or not in a similar climatic region. When the station is nearby, using the NLDAS data produces similar results. The correlation coefficients of the analyses using the NLDAS data were greater than 0.8, the Nash-Sutcliffe (NS) model fit efficiency greater than 0.6, and the error in the water balance was less than 5%. Our analyses also showed that the streamflow improvements were mainly contributed by the NLDAS's precipitation data and that the improvement from using NLDAS's evapotranspiration data was not significant; partially due to the constraints of current BASINS-HSPF settings. However, NLDAS's evapotranspiration data did improve the baseflow prediction. This study demonstrates the NLDAS data has the potential to improve stream flow predictions, thus aid the water quality assessment in the EPA nonpoint water quality assessment decision tool.

  3. Assessing the predictive performance of risk-based water quality criteria using decision error estimates from receiver operating characteristics (ROC) analysis.

    PubMed

    McLaughlin, Douglas B

    2012-10-01

    Field data relating aquatic ecosystem responses with water quality constituents that are potential ecosystem stressors are being used increasingly in the United States in the derivation of water quality criteria to protect aquatic life. In light of this trend, there is a need for transparent quantitative methods to assess the performance of models that predict ecological conditions using a stressor-response relationship, a response variable threshold, and a stressor variable criterion. Analysis of receiver operating characteristics (ROC analysis) has a considerable history of successful use in medical diagnostic, industrial, and other fields for similarly structured decision problems, but its use for informing water quality management decisions involving risk-based environmental criteria is less common. In this article, ROC analysis is used to evaluate predictions of ecological response variable status for 3 water quality stressor-response data sets. Information on error rates is emphasized due in part to their common use in environmental studies to describe uncertainty. One data set is comprised of simulated data, and 2 involve field measurements described previously in the literature. These data sets are also analyzed using linear regression and conditional probability analysis for comparison. Results indicate that of the methods studied, ROC analysis provides the most comprehensive characterization of prediction error rates including false positive, false negative, positive predictive, and negative predictive errors. This information may be used along with other data analysis procedures to set quality objectives for and assess the predictive performance of risk-based criteria to support water quality management decisions.

  4. Assessment of the quality of antenatal care services provided by health workers using a mobile phone decision support application in northern Nigeria: a pre/post-intervention study.

    PubMed

    McNabb, Marion; Chukwu, Emeka; Ojo, Oluwayemisi; Shekhar, Navendu; Gill, Christopher J; Salami, Habeeb; Jega, Farouk

    2015-01-01

    Given the shortage of skilled healthcare providers in Nigeria, frontline community health extension workers (CHEWs) are commonly tasked with providing maternal and child health services at primary health centers. In 2012, we introduced a mobile case management and decision support application in twenty primary health centers in northern Nigeria, and conducted a pre-test/post-test study to assess whether the introduction of the app had an effect on the quality of antenatal care services provided by this lower-level cadre. Using the CommCare mobile platform, the app dynamically guides CHEWs through antenatal care protocols and collects client data in real time. Thirteen health education audio clips are also embedded in the app for improving and standardizing client counseling. To detect changes in quality, we developed an evidence-based quality score consisting of 25 indicators, and conducted a total of 266 client exit interviews. We analyzed baseline and endline data to assess changes in the overall quality score as well as changes in the provision of key elements of antenatal care. Overall, the quality score increased from 13.3 at baseline to 17.2 at endline (p<0.0001), out of a total possible score of 25, with the most significant improvements related to health counseling, technical services provided, and quality of health education. These study results suggest that the introduction of a low-cost mobile case management and decision support application can spur behavior change and improve the quality of services provided by a lower level cadre of healthcare workers. Future research should employ a more rigorous experimental design to explore potential longer-term effects on client health outcomes.

  5. Assessment of Service Quality in Teaching Hospitals of Yazd University of Medical Sciences: Using Multi-criteria Decision Making Techniques.

    PubMed

    Shafii, Milad; Rafiei, Sima; Abooee, Fatemeh; Bahrami, Mohammad Amin; Nouhi, Mojtaba; Lotfi, Farhad; Khanjankhani, Khatere

    2016-08-01

    Hospitals as integrated parts of the wide-ranging health care systems have dominant focus on health care provision to meet, maintain and promote people's health needs of a community. This study aimed to assess the service quality of teaching hospitals of Yazd University of Medical Sciences using Fuzzy Analytical Hierarchy Process (FAHP) and Technique for Order Preference by Similarity to Ideal Solution (TOPSIS). A literature review and a qualitative method were used to obtain experts' viewpoints about the quality dimensions of hospital services to design a questionnaire. Then, using a self-made questionnaire, perceptions of 300 patients about the quality of delivered services were gathered. Finally, FAHP was applied to weigh each quality dimension and TOPSIS method to rank hospital wards. Six dimensions including responsiveness, assurance, security, tangibles, health communication and Patient orientation were identified as affecting aspects of hospital services quality among which, security and tangibles got the highest and lowest importance respectively (0.25406, 0.06883). Findings also revealed that in hospital A, orthopedics and ophthalmology wards obtained the highest score in terms of quality while cardiology department got the lowest ranking (0.954, 0.323). In hospital B, the highest and the lowest ranking was belonged to cardiology and surgical wards (0.895, 0.00) while in hospital C, surgical units were rated higher than internal wards (0.959, 0.851). Findings emphasized that the security dimension got the lowest ranking among SERVQUAL facets in studied hospitals. This requires hospital executives to pay special attention to the issue of patients' security and plan effectively for its promotion.

  6. Decision Dissonance: Evaluating an Approach to Measuring the Quality of Surgical Decision Making

    PubMed Central

    Fowler, Floyd J.; Gallagher, Patricia M.; Drake, Keith M.; Sepucha, Karen R.

    2013-01-01

    Background Good decision making has been increasingly cited as a core component of good medical care, and shared decision making is one means of achieving high decision quality. If it is to be a standard, good measures and protocols are needed for assessing the quality of decisions. Consistency with patient goals and concerns is one defining characteristic of a good decision. A new method for evaluating decision quality for major surgical decisions was examined, and a methodology for collecting the needed data was developed. Methods For a national probability sample of fee-for-service Medicare beneficiaries who had a coronary artery bypass graft (CABG), a lumpectomy or a mastectomy for breast cancer, or surgery for prostate cancer during the last half of 2008, a mail survey of selected patients was carried out about one year after the procedures. Patients’ goals and concerns, knowledge, key aspects of interactions with clinicians, and feelings about the decisions were assessed. A Decision Dissonance Score was created that measured the extent to which patient ratings of goals ran counter to the treatment received. The construct and predictive validity of the Decision Dissonance Score was then assessed. Results When data were averaged across all four procedures, patients with more knowledge and those who reported more involvement reported significantly lower Decision Dissonance Scores. Patients with lower Decision Dissonance Scores also reported more confidence in their decisions and feeling more positively about how the treatment turned out, and they were more likely to say that they would make the same decision again. Conclusions Surveying discharged surgery patients is a feasible way to evaluate decision making, and Decision Dissonance appears to be a promising approach to validly measuring decision quality. PMID:23516764

  7. Decision-making about healthcare related tests and diagnostic strategies: A systematic review shows limitations in most tools designed to assess quality and develop recommendations.

    PubMed

    Mustafa, Reem A; Wiercioch, Wojtek; Falavigna, Maicon; Zhang, Yuan; Ivanova, Liudmila; Arevalo-Rodriguez, Ingrid; Cheung, Adrienne; Prediger, Barbara; Ventresca, Matthew; Brozek, Jan; Santesso, Nancy; Bossuyt, Patrick; Garg, Amit X; Lloyd, Nancy; Lelgemann, Monika; Bühler, Diedrich; Schünemann, Holger J

    2017-09-12

    To identify and describe critical appraisal tools designed for assessing the quality of evidence (QoE) and/or strength of recommendations (SoR) related to healthcare related tests and diagnostic strategies (HCTDS). and Settings: We conducted a systematic review to identify tools applied in guidelines, methodological articles, and systematic reviews to assess HCTDS. We screened 5534 titles and abstracts, 1004 full text articles, and abstracted data from 330 references. We identified 29 tools and 14 modifications of existing tools for assessing QoE and SoR. Twenty-three out of 29 tools acknowledge the importance of assessing the QoE and SoR separately but in 8, the SoR is based solely on QoE. When making decisions about the use of tests, patient values and preferences and impact on resource utilization were considered in 6 and 8 tools respectively. There is also confusion about the terminology that describes the various factors that influence the QoE and SoR. Although at least one approach includes all relevant criteria for assessing QoE and determining SoR, more detailed guidance about how to operationalize these assessments and make related judgments will be beneficial. There is a need for a better description of the framework for using evidence to make decisions and develop recommendations about HCTDS. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. Health-related quality of life assessment and reported outcomes in leukaemia randomised controlled trials - a systematic review to evaluate the added value in supporting clinical decision making.

    PubMed

    Efficace, Fabio; Kemmler, Georg; Vignetti, Marco; Mandelli, Franco; Molica, Stefano; Holzner, Bernhard

    2008-07-01

    Health-related quality of life (HRQOL) is increasingly reported as an important outcome in cancer clinical trials. However, very little evidence exists on the impact of such evaluation in randomised controlled trials (RCTs) of leukaemia patients. A systematic search of the literature from 1980 to 2007 was undertaken and studies were identified and evaluated independently, according to a pre-defined coding scheme, by three reviewers. Both HRQOL outcomes and traditional clinical reported outcomes were systematically analysed to evaluate their consistency and their relevance for supporting clinical decision making. Nine RCTs were identified, involving 3838 patients overall. There were four RCTs involving acute myeloid leukaemia patients (AML), three with chronic myeloid leukaemia (CML) and two with chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (CLL). Six studies were published after 2000 and provided fairly robust methodological quality. Imatinib greatly improved HRQOL compared to interferon based treatments in CML patients and fludarabine plus cyclophosphamide does not seem to have a deleterious impact on patient's HRQOL when compared to fludarabine alone or chlorambucil in CLL patients. This study revealed the paucity of HRQOL research in leukaemia patients. Nonetheless, HRQOL assessment is feasible in RCTs and has the great potential of providing valuable outcomes to further support clinical decision making.

  9. Assessing the feasibility and quality of shared decision making in China: evaluating a clinical encounter intervention for Chinese patients

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Rongchong; Song, Xiantao; Wu, Jian; Huang, Wei; Leppin, Aaron L; Gionfriddo, Michael R; Liu, Yongxian; Boehmer, Kasey R; Ting, Henry H; Montori, Victor M

    2016-01-01

    Background The aim of this study was to evaluate the feasibility of using the Statin Choice decision aid to have discussions about starting a statin medication for cardiovascular risk reduction in Chinese patients with stable coronary artery diseases. Methods A prospective, pilot study of the Statin Choice decision aid in two teaching hospitals in Northern China was conducted. A total of seven clinicians were enrolled and underwent a 12-hour, group-based, in-person training on shared decision making (SDM) and the Statin Choice decision aid. Then, these clinicians used the Statin Choice decision aid in patients during a clinical encounter. A total of 86 patients aged 40−80 years, who had stable angina, were enrolled. All clinical encounters were video recorded. A team of three researchers viewed and scored all the encounter recordings to evaluate the SDM process and fidelity to the intervention using the OPTION scale and Fidelity scale, respectively. All the patients were followed up for 12 months to record adherence to statin and any major adverse cardiac events (MACEs). Results The average scores on the OPTION normalized score and Fidelity scale were 21 (range, 3–32; out of a possible, 48) and 10 (range, 6–10; out of a possible, 10), respectively. This suggested that Chinese clinicians who were using Statin Choice in their patients were able to exhibit behaviors consistent with SDM at a level that is similar to that reported in Western countries. After SDM, the statin adherence was 94.5% (69/73), and the proportion of MACEs was 2.9% (2/69). Conclusion Using an encounter decision aid developed in the US, it was feasible to implement SDM in a referral cardiology practice in Mainland China. Further work to ensure that the encounter aid is pertinent to the Chinese population and that SDM is tested in at-risk patients could contribute to the implementation of SDM across Mainland China. PMID:27881912

  10. Quality of decision making and group norms.

    PubMed

    Postmes, T; Spears, R; Cihangir, S

    2001-06-01

    Two studies investigated the impact of group norms for maintaining consensus versus norms for critical thought on group decisions in a modification of the biased sampling paradigm (G. Stasser & W. Titus, 1985). Both studies showed that critical norms improved the quality of decisions, whereas consensus norms did not. This effect appeared to be mediated by the perceived value of shared and unshared information: Consensus norm groups valued shared information more highly than critical groups did, and valence was a good predictor of decision outcome. In addition, the 2nd study showed that the group norm manipulation has no impact on individual decisions, consistent with the assumption that this is a group effect. Results suggest that the content of group norms is an important factor influencing the quality of group decision-making processes and that the content of group norms may be related to the group's proneness for groupthink.

  11. Assessment and improvement of HIV screening rates in a Midwest primary care practice using an electronic clinical decision support system: a quality improvement study.

    PubMed

    Marcelin, Jasmine R; Tan, Eugene M; Marcelin, Alberto; Scheitel, Marianne; Ramu, Praveen; Hankey, Ronald; Keniya, Pritesh; Wingo, Majken; Rizza, Stacey A; North, Frederick; Chaudhry, Rajeev

    2016-07-04

    Universal human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) screening remains low in many clinical practices despite published guidelines recommending screening for all patients between ages 13-65. Electronic clinical decision support tools have improved screening rates for many chronic diseases. We designed a quality improvement project to improve the rate of universal HIV screening of adult patients in a Midwest primary care practice using a clinical decision support tool. We conducted this quality improvement project in Rochester, Minnesota from January 1, 2014 to December 31, 2014. Baseline primary care practice HIV screening data were acquired from January 1, 2014 to April 30, 2014. We surveyed providers and educated them about current CDC recommended screening guidelines. We then added an HIV screening alert to an existing electronic clinical decision support tool and post-intervention HIV screening rates were obtained from May 1, 2014 to December 31, 2014. The primary quality outcome being assessed was change in universal HIV screening rates. Twelve thousand five hundred ninety-six unique patients were eligible for HIV screening in 2014; 327 were screened for HIV. 6,070 and 6,526 patients were seen before and after the intervention, respectively. 1.80 % of eligible patients and 3.34 % of eligible patients were screened prior to and after the intervention, respectively (difference of -1.54 % [-2.1 %, -0.99 %], p < 0.0001); OR 1.89 (1.50, 2.38). Prior to the intervention, African Americans were more likely to have been screened for HIV (OR 3.86 (2.22, 6.71; p < 0.001) than Whites, but this effect decreased significantly after the intervention (OR 1.90 (1.12, 3.21; p = 0.03). These data showed that an electronic alert almost doubled the rates of universal HIV screening by primary care providers in a Midwestern practice and reduced racial disparities, but there is still substantial room for improvement in universal screening practices. Opportunities for

  12. Study protocol: a mixed methods study to assess mental health recovery, shared decision-making and quality of life (Plan4Recovery).

    PubMed

    Coffey, Michael; Hannigan, Ben; Meudell, Alan; Hunt, Julian; Fitzsimmons, Deb

    2016-08-17

    Recovery in mental health care is complex, highly individual and can be facilitated by a range of professional and non-professional support. In this study we will examine how recovery from mental health problems is promoted in non-medical settings. We hypothesise a relationship between involvement in decisions about care, social support and recovery and quality of life outcomes. We will use standardised validated instruments of involvement in decision-making, social contacts, recovery and quality of life with a random sample of people accessing non-statutory mental health social care services in Wales. We will add to this important information with detailed one to one case study interviews with people, their family members and their support workers. We will use a series of these interviews to examine how people build recovery over time to help us understand more about their involvement in decisions and the social links they build. We want to see how being involved in decisions about care and the social links people have are related to recovery and quality of life for people with experience of using mental health support services. We want to understand the different perspectives of the people involved in making recovery possible. We will use this information to guide further studies of particular types of social interventions and their use in helping recovery from mental health problems.

  13. Conceptualizing, Understanding, and Predicting Responsible Decisions and Quality Input

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wall, N.; PytlikZillig, L. M.

    2012-12-01

    In areas such as climate change, where uncertainty is high, it is arguably less difficult to tell when efforts have resulted in changes in knowledge, than when those efforts have resulted in responsible decisions. What is a responsible decision? More broadly, when it comes to citizen input, what is "high quality" input? And most importantly, how are responsible decisions and quality input enhanced? The aim of this paper is to contribute to the understanding of the different dimensions of "responsible" or "quality" public input and citizen decisions by comparing and contrasting the different predictors of those different dimensions. We first present different possibilities for defining, operationalizing and assessing responsible or high quality decisions. For example, responsible decisions or quality input might be defined as using specific content (e.g., using climate change information in decisions appropriately), as using specific processes (e.g., investing time and effort in learning about and discussing the issues prior to making decisions), or on the basis of some judgment of the decision or input itself (e.g., judgments of the rationale provided for the decisions, or number of issues considered when giving input). Second, we present results from our work engaging people with science policy topics, and the different ways that we have tried to define these two constructs. In the area of climate change specifically, we describe the development of a short survey that assesses exposure to climate information, knowledge of and attitudes toward climate change, and use of climate information in one's decisions. Specifically, the short survey was developed based on a review of common surveys of climate change related knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors, and extensive piloting and cognitive interviews. Next, we analyze more than 200 responses to that survey (data collection is currently ongoing and will be complete after the AGU deadline), and report the predictors of

  14. Quality of Patient Decisions About Breast Reconstruction After Mastectomy.

    PubMed

    Lee, Clara Nan-Hi; Deal, Allison M; Huh, Ruth; Ubel, Peter Anthony; Liu, Yuen-Jong; Blizard, Lillian; Hunt, Caprice; Pignone, Michael Patrick

    2017-08-01

    Breast reconstruction has the potential to improve a person's body image and quality of life but has important risks. Variations in who undergoes breast reconstruction have led to questions about the quality of patient decisions. To assess the quality of patient decisions about breast reconstruction. A prospective, cross-sectional survey study was conducted from June 27, 2012, to February 28, 2014, at a single, academic, multidisciplinary oncology clinic among women planning to undergo mastectomy for stage I to III invasive ductal or lobular breast cancer, ductal carcinoma in situ, or prophylaxis. Mastectomy only and mastectomy with reconstruction. Knowledge, as ascertained using the Decision Quality Instrument; preference concordance, based on rating and ranking of key attributes; and decision quality, defined as having knowledge of 50% or more and preference concordance. During the 20-month period, 214 patients were eligible, 182 were approached, and 32 missed. We enrolled 145 patients (79.7% enrollment rate), and received surveys from 131 patients (72.0% participation rate). Five participants became ineligible. The final study population was 126 patients. Among the 126 women in the study (mean [SD] age, 53.2 [12.1] years), the mean (SD) knowledge score was 58.5% (16.2%) and did not differ by treatment group (mastectomy only, 55.2% [15.0%]; mastectomy with reconstruction, 60.5% [16.5%]). A total of 82 of 123 participants (66.7%) had a calculated treatment preference of mastectomy only; 39 of these women (47.6%) underwent mastectomy only. A total of 41 participants (32.5%) had a calculated treatment preference of mastectomy with reconstruction; 36 of these women (87.8%) underwent mastectomy with reconstruction. Overall, 52 of 120 participants (43.3%) made a high-quality decision. In multivariable analysis, white race/ethnicity (odds ratio [OR], 2.72; 95% CI, 1.00-7.38; P = .05), having private insurance (OR, 1.61; 95% CI, 1.35-1.93; P < .001), having a

  15. Shared Decision Making in Neonatal Quality Improvement.

    PubMed

    Warren, Jamie B; Wiggins, Nikki

    2016-01-01

    Since the Institute of Medicine published Crossing the Quality Chasm in 2001, healthcare systems have become more focused on improving the quality of healthcare delivery. At Oregon Health & Science University and Doernbecher Children's Hospital, we recognize the need to take an interprofessional, team-based approach to improving the care we provide to our current and future patients. We describe here an ongoing quality improvement project in the Doernbecher Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU), with specific attention to the factors we believe have contributed to the implementation and early success of the project. These factors include the history of quality improvement work in our NICU and in the field of neonatology, the "dyad leadership" structure under which we operate in our NICU, and our developing understanding of the concept of "team intelligence." These elements have led to the formation of a team that can practice shared decision making and work as one to realize a shared goal.

  16. Taking Decisions: Assessment for University Entry

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Plassmann, Sibylle; Zeidler, Beate

    2014-01-01

    Language testing means taking decisions: about the test taker's results, but also about the test construct and the measures taken in order to ensure quality. This article takes the German test "telc Deutsch C1 Hochschule" as an example to illustrate this decision-making process in an academic context. The test is used for university…

  17. Taking Decisions: Assessment for University Entry

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Plassmann, Sibylle; Zeidler, Beate

    2014-01-01

    Language testing means taking decisions: about the test taker's results, but also about the test construct and the measures taken in order to ensure quality. This article takes the German test "telc Deutsch C1 Hochschule" as an example to illustrate this decision-making process in an academic context. The test is used for university…

  18. Evaluating the Validity of Portfolio Assessments for Licensure Decisions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wilson, Mark; Hallam, P. J.; Pecheone, Raymond; Moss, Pamela A.

    2014-01-01

    This study examines one part of a validity argument for portfolio assessments of teaching practice used as an indicator of teaching quality to inform a licensure decision. We investigate the relationship among portfolio assessment scores, a test of teacher knowledge (ETS's Praxis I and II), and changes in student achievement (on…

  19. Implications of Modeling Uncertainty for Water Quality Decision Making

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shabman, L.

    2002-05-01

    The report, National Academy of Sciences report, "Assessing the TMDL Approach to Water Quality Management" endorsed the "watershed" and "ambient water quality focused" approach" to water quality management called for in the TMDL program. The committee felt that available data and models were adequate to move such a program forward, if the EPA and all stakeholders better understood the nature of the scientific enterprise and its application to the TMDL program. Specifically, the report called for a greater acknowledgement of model prediction uncertinaity in making and implementing TMDL plans. To assure that such uncertinaity was addressed in water quality decision making the committee called for a commitment to "adaptive implementation" of water quality management plans. The committee found that the number and complexity of the interactions of multiple stressors, combined with model prediction uncertinaity means that we need to avoid the temptation to make assurances that specific actions will result in attainment of particular water quality standards. Until the work on solving a water quality problem begins, analysts and decision makers cannot be sure what the correct solutions are, or even what water quality goals a community should be seeking. In complex systems we need to act in order to learn; adaptive implementation is a concurrent process of action and learning. Learning requires (1) continued monitoring of the waterbody to determine how it responds to the actions taken and (2) carefully designed experiments in the watershed. If we do not design learning into what we attempt we are not doing adaptive implementation. Therefore, there needs to be an increased commitment to monitoring and experiments in watersheds that will lead to learning. This presentation will 1) explain the logic for adaptive implementation; 2) discuss the ways that water quality modelers could characterize and explain model uncertinaity to decision makers; 3) speculate on the implications

  20. On the Quality of Collective Decisions in Sociotechnical Systems: Transparency, Fairness, and Efficiency

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Porello, Daniele

    The aim of this paper is to propose a methodology for evaluating the quality of collective decisions in sociotechnical systems (STS). We propose using a foundational ontology for conceptualizing the complex hierarchy of information involved in decisions in STS (e.g., normative, conceptual, factual, perceptual). Moreover, we introduce the concept of transparency of decisions as a necessary condition in order to assess the quality of decision-making in STS. We further view transparency as an entitlement of the agent affected by the decision: i.e., the collective decision should be justified.

  1. 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.

  2. Development and psychometric properties of a brief measure of subjective decision quality for breast cancer treatment.

    PubMed

    Resnicow, Ken; Abrahamse, Paul; Tocco, Rachel S; Hawley, Sarah; Griggs, Jennifer; Janz, Nancy; Fagerlin, Angela; Wilson, Adrienne; Ward, Kevin C; Gabram, Sheryl G A; Katz, Steven

    2014-12-05

    Breast cancer patients face several preference-sensitive treatment decisions. Feelings such as regret or having had inadequate information about these decisions can significantly alter patient perceptions of recovery and recurrence. Numerous objective measures of decision quality (e.g., knowledge assessments, values concordance measures) have been developed; there are far fewer measures of subjective decision quality and little consensus regarding how the construct should be assessed. The current study explores the psychometric properties of a new subjective quality decision measure for breast cancer treatment that could be used for other preference sensitive decisions. 320 women aged 20-79 diagnosed with AJCC stage 0 - III breast cancer were surveyed at two cancer specialty centers. Decision quality was assessed with single items representing six dimensions: regret, satisfaction, and fit as well as perceived adequacy of information, time, and involvement. Women rated decision quality for their overall treatment experience and surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation decisions separately. Principle components was used to explore factor structure. After scales were formed, internal consistency was computed using Cronbach's alpha. The association of each of the four final scales with patient characteristics scores was examined by Pearson correlation. For overall breast cancer treatment as well as surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation decisions, the six items yielded a single factor solution. Factor loadings of the six decision items were all above .45 across the overall and treatment-specific scales, with the exception of "Right for You" for chemotherapy and radiation. Internal consistency was 0.77, 0.85, 0.82, and 0.78 for the overall, surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation decision quality scales, respectively. Our measure of subjective appraisal of breast cancer treatment decisions includes 5 related elements; regret and satisfaction as well as perceived adequacy of

  3. TEMPO Early Adopters in Air-Quality Forecasting, Planning and Assessment, Pollution Emissions, Health, Agriculture, and Environmental Impacts: Applications and Decision Support

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Newchurch, M.; Zavodsky, B.; Chance, K.; Haynes, J.; Lefer, B. L.; Naeger, A.

    2016-12-01

    The AQ research community has a long legacy of using space-based observations (e.g., Solar Backscatter Ultraviolet Instrument [SBUV], Global Ozone Monitoring Experiment [GOME], Ozone Monitoring Instrument [OMI], and the Ozone Mapping & Profiler Suite [OMPS]) to study atmospheric chemistry. These measurements have been used to observe day-to-day and year-to-year changes in atmospheric constituents. However, they have not been able to capture the diurnal variability of pollution with enough temporal or spatial fidelity and a low enough latency for regular use by operational decision makers. As a result, the operational AQ community has traditionally relied on ground-based (e.g., collection stations, LIDAR) and airborne observing systems to study tropospheric chemistry. In order to maximize its utility for applications and decision support, there is a need to educate the community about the game-changing potential for the geostationary TEMPO mission well ahead of its expected launch date early in the third decade of this millinium. This NASA mission will engage user communities and enable science across the NASA Applied Science Focus Areas of Health and Air Quality, Disasters, Water Resources, and Ecological Forecasting, In addition, topics discussed will provide opportunities for collaborations extending TEMPO applications to future program areas in Agriculture, Weather and Climate (including Numerical Weather Prediction), Energy, and Oceans.

  4. Decision tree approach for soil liquefaction assessment.

    PubMed

    Gandomi, Amir H; Fridline, Mark M; Roke, David A

    2013-01-01

    In the current study, the performances of some decision tree (DT) techniques are evaluated for postearthquake soil liquefaction assessment. A database containing 620 records of seismic parameters and soil properties is used in this study. Three decision tree techniques are used here in two different ways, considering statistical and engineering points of view, to develop decision rules. The DT results are compared to the logistic regression (LR) model. The results of this study indicate that the DTs not only successfully predict liquefaction but they can also outperform the LR model. The best DT models are interpreted and evaluated based on an engineering point of view.

  5. Decision Tree Approach for Soil Liquefaction Assessment

    PubMed Central

    Gandomi, Amir H.; Fridline, Mark M.; Roke, David A.

    2013-01-01

    In the current study, the performances of some decision tree (DT) techniques are evaluated for postearthquake soil liquefaction assessment. A database containing 620 records of seismic parameters and soil properties is used in this study. Three decision tree techniques are used here in two different ways, considering statistical and engineering points of view, to develop decision rules. The DT results are compared to the logistic regression (LR) model. The results of this study indicate that the DTs not only successfully predict liquefaction but they can also outperform the LR model. The best DT models are interpreted and evaluated based on an engineering point of view. PMID:24489498

  6. Models, Measurements, and Local Decisions: Assessing and ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    This presentation includes a combination of modeling and measurement results to characterize near-source air quality in Newark, New Jersey with consideration of how this information could be used to inform decision making to reduce risk of health impacts. Decisions could include either exposure or emissions reduction, and a host of stakeholders, including residents, academics, NGOs, local and federal agencies. This presentation includes results from the C-PORT modeling system, and from a citizen science project from the local area. The National Exposure Research Laboratory (NERL) Computational Exposure Division (CED) develops and evaluates data, decision-support tools, and models to be applied to media-specific or receptor-specific problem areas. CED uses modeling-based approaches to characterize exposures, evaluate fate and transport, and support environmental diagnostics/forensics with input from multiple data sources. It also develops media- and receptor-specific models, process models, and decision support tools for use both within and outside of EPA.

  7. 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)

  8. Does physician communication style impact patient report of decision quality for breast cancer treatment?

    PubMed

    Martinez, Kathryn A; Resnicow, Ken; Williams, Geoffrey C; Silva, Marlene; Abrahamse, Paul; Shumway, Dean A; Wallner, Lauren P; Katz, Steven J; Hawley, Sarah T

    2016-12-01

    Provider communication that supports patient autonomy has been associated with numerous positive patient outcomes. However, to date, no research has examined the relationship between perceived provider communication style and patient-assessed decision quality in breast cancer. Using a population-based sample of women with localized breast cancer, we assessed patient perceptions of autonomy-supportive communication from their surgeons and medical oncologists, as well as patient-reported decision quality. We used multivariable linear regression to examine the association between autonomy-supportive communication and subjective decision quality for surgery and chemotherapy decisions, controlling for sociodemographic and clinical factors, as well as patient-reported communication preference (non-directive or directive). Among the 1690 women included in the overall sample, patient-reported decision quality scores were positively associated with higher levels of perceived autonomy-supportive communication from surgeons (β=0.30; p<0.001) and medical oncologists (β=0.26; p<0.001). Patient communication style preference moderated the association between physician communication style received and perceived decision quality. Autonomy-supportive communication by physicians was associated with higher subjective decision quality among women with localized breast cancer. These results support future efforts to design interventions that enhance autonomy-supportive communication. Autonomy-supportive communication by cancer doctors can improve patients' perceived decision quality. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Health Impact Assessment of Urban Waterway Decisions

    PubMed Central

    Korfmacher, Katrina Smith; Aviles, Katia; Cummings, B.J.; Daniell, William; Erdmann, Jared; Garrison, Valerie

    2014-01-01

    Health impact assessments (HIA) promote the consideration of health in a wide range of public decisions. Although each HIA is different, common pathways, evidence bases, and strategies for community engagement tend to emerge in certain sectors, such as urban redevelopment, natural resource extraction, or transportation planning. To date, a limited number of HIAs have been conducted on decisions affecting water resources and waterfronts. This review presents four recent HIAs of water-related decisions in the United States and Puerto Rico. Although the four cases are topically and geographically diverse, several common themes emerged from the consideration of health in water-related decisions. Water resource decisions are characterized by multiple competing uses, inter-institutional and inter-jurisdictional complexity, scientific uncertainty, long time scales for environmental change, diverse cultural and historical human values, and tradeoffs between private use and public access. These four case studies reveal challenges and opportunities of examining waterfront decisions through a “health lens”. This review analyzes these cases, common themes, and lessons learned for the future practice of HIA in the waterfront zone and beyond. PMID:25547399

  10. Mask industry quality assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Strott, Al; Bassist, Larry

    1994-12-01

    Product quality and timely delivery are two of the most important parameters in determining the success of a mask manufacturing facility. Because of the sensitivity of this data, very little was known about industry performance in these areas until an assessment was authored and presented at the 1993 BACUS Symposium by Larry Regis of Intel Corporation, Neil Paulsen of Intel Corporation, and James A. Reynolds of Reynolds Consulting. This data has been updated and will be published and presented at this year's BACUS Symposium. Contributor identities will again remain protected by utilizing Arthur Andersen & Company to compile the submittals. Participation was consistent with last year's representation of over 75% of the total merchant and captive mask volume in the United States. The data compiled includes shipments, customer return rate, customer return reasons from 1988 through Q2, 1994, performance to schedule, plate survival yield, and throughput time (TPT).

  11. Drinking water quality assessment.

    PubMed

    Aryal, J; Gautam, B; Sapkota, N

    2012-09-01

    Drinking water quality is the great public health concern because it is a major risk factor for high incidence of diarrheal diseases in Nepal. In the recent years, the prevalence rate of diarrhoea has been found the highest in Myagdi district. This study was carried out to assess the quality of drinking water from different natural sources, reservoirs and collection taps at Arthunge VDC of Myagdi district. A cross-sectional study was carried out using random sampling method in Arthunge VDC of Myagdi district from January to June,2010. 84 water samples representing natural sources, reservoirs and collection taps from the study area were collected. The physico-chemical and microbiological analysis was performed following standards technique set by APHA 1998 and statistical analysis was carried out using SPSS 11.5. The result was also compared with national and WHO guidelines. Out of 84 water samples (from natural source, reservoirs and tap water) analyzed, drinking water quality parameters (except arsenic and total coliform) of all water samples was found to be within the WHO standards and national standards.15.48% of water samples showed pH (13) higher than the WHO permissible guideline values. Similarly, 85.71% of water samples showed higher Arsenic value (72) than WHO value. Further, the statistical analysis showed no significant difference (P<0.05) of physico-chemical parameters and total coliform count of drinking water for collection taps water samples of winter (January, 2010) and summer (June, 2010). The microbiological examination of water samples revealed the presence of total coliform in 86.90% of water samples. The results obtained from physico-chemical analysis of water samples were within national standard and WHO standards except arsenic. The study also found the coliform contamination to be the key problem with drinking water.

  12. Analysis of ETMS Data Quality for Traffic Flow Management Decisions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chatterji, Gano B.; Sridhar, Banavar; Kim, Douglas

    2003-01-01

    The data needed for air traffic flow management decision support tools is provided by the Enhanced Traffic Management System (ETMS). This includes both the tools that are in current use and the ones being developed for future deployment. Since the quality of decision support provided by all these tools will be influenced by the quality of the input ETMS data, an assessment of ETMS data quality is needed. Motivated by this desire, ETMS data quality is examined in this paper in terms of the unavailability of flight plans, deviation from the filed flight plans, departure delays, altitude errors and track data drops. Although many of these data quality issues are not new, little is known about their extent. A goal of this paper is to document the magnitude of data quality issues supported by numerical analysis of ETMS data. Guided by this goal, ETMS data for a 24-hour period were processed to determine the number of aircraft with missing flight plan messages at any given instant of time. Results are presented for aircraft above 18,000 feet altitude and also at all altitudes. Since deviation from filed flight plan is also a major cause of trajectory-modeling errors, statistics of deviations are presented. Errors in proposed departure times and ETMS-generated vertical profiles are also shown. A method for conditioning the vertical profiles for improving demand prediction accuracy is described. Graphs of actual sector counts obtained using these vertical profiles are compared with those obtained using the Host data for sectors in the Fort Worth Center to demonstrate the benefit of preprocessing. Finally, results are presented to quantify the extent of data drops. A method for propagating track positions during ETMS data drops is also described.

  13. Analysis of ETMS Data Quality for Traffic Flow Management Decisions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chatterji, Gano B.; Sridhar, Banavar; Kim, Douglas

    2003-01-01

    The data needed for air traffic flow management decision support tools is provided by the Enhanced Traffic Management System (ETMS). This includes both the tools that are in current use and the ones being developed for future deployment. Since the quality of decision support provided by all these tools will be influenced by the quality of the input ETMS data, an assessment of ETMS data quality is needed. Motivated by this desire, ETMS data quality is examined in this paper in terms of the unavailability of flight plans, deviation from the filed flight plans, departure delays, altitude errors and track data drops. Although many of these data quality issues are not new, little is known about their extent. A goal of this paper is to document the magnitude of data quality issues supported by numerical analysis of ETMS data. Guided by this goal, ETMS data for a 24-hour period were processed to determine the number of aircraft with missing flight plan messages at any given instant of time. Results are presented for aircraft above 18,000 feet altitude and also at all altitudes. Since deviation from filed flight plan is also a major cause of trajectory-modeling errors, statistics of deviations are presented. Errors in proposed departure times and ETMS-generated vertical profiles are also shown. A method for conditioning the vertical profiles for improving demand prediction accuracy is described. Graphs of actual sector counts obtained using these vertical profiles are compared with those obtained using the Host data for sectors in the Fort Worth Center to demonstrate the benefit of preprocessing. Finally, results are presented to quantify the extent of data drops. A method for propagating track positions during ETMS data drops is also described.

  14. 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,…

  15. 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,…

  16. 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).

  17. Data Quality: Earning the Confidence of Decision Makers.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ligon, Glynn D.

    Professionals responsible for educational research, evaluation, and statistics have sought to provide timely and useful information to decision makers. Regardless of the evaluation model, research design, or statistical methodology employed, informing the decision making process with quality, reliable data is a basic goal. The definition of…

  18. Determinants of judgment and decision making quality: the interplay between information processing style and situational factors.

    PubMed

    Ayal, Shahar; Rusou, Zohar; Zakay, Dan; Hochman, Guy

    2015-01-01

    A framework is presented to better characterize the role of individual differences in information processing style and their interplay with contextual factors in determining decision making quality. In Experiment 1, we show that individual differences in information processing style are flexible and can be modified by situational factors. Specifically, a situational manipulation that induced an analytical mode of thought improved decision quality. In Experiment 2, we show that this improvement in decision quality is highly contingent on the compatibility between the dominant thinking mode and the nature of the task. That is, encouraging an intuitive mode of thought led to better performance on an intuitive task but hampered performance on an analytical task. The reverse pattern was obtained when an analytical mode of thought was encouraged. We discuss the implications of these results for the assessment of decision making competence, and suggest practical directions to help individuals better adjust their information processing style to the situation at hand and make optimal decisions.

  19. Service Quality and Customer Satisfaction: An Assessment and Future Directions.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hernon, Peter; Nitecki, Danuta A.; Altman, Ellen

    1999-01-01

    Reviews the literature of library and information science to examine issues related to service quality and customer satisfaction in academic libraries. Discusses assessment, the application of a business model to higher education, a multiple constituency approach, decision areas regarding service quality, resistance to service quality, and future…

  20. The Use of Graphs as Decision Aids in Relation to Information Overload and Managerial Decision Quality.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chan, Siu Y.

    2001-01-01

    Discussion of information overload focuses on a study of masters degree students at a Hong Kong university that investigated the effectiveness of graphs as decision aids to reduce adverse effects of information overload on decision quality. Results of a simulation of a business prediction task with a sample of business managers are presented.…

  1. The Use of Graphs as Decision Aids in Relation to Information Overload and Managerial Decision Quality.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chan, Siu Y.

    2001-01-01

    Discussion of information overload focuses on a study of masters degree students at a Hong Kong university that investigated the effectiveness of graphs as decision aids to reduce adverse effects of information overload on decision quality. Results of a simulation of a business prediction task with a sample of business managers are presented.…

  2. 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…

  3. 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…

  4. Irrigation water quality assessments

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    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...

  5. 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.

  6. Affirming the Value of the Resident Assessment Instrument: Minimum Data Set Version 2.0 for Nursing Home Decision-Making and Quality Improvement.

    PubMed

    Drummond, Lindsay S; Slaughter, Susan E; Jones, C Allyson; Wagg, Adrian S

    2015-07-30

    We examined the agreement over time of the physical functioning domains of the Resident Assessment Instrument: Minimum Data Set Version 2.0 (RAI-MDS) and the Functional Independence Measure (FIM) in nursing home residents with dementia. We completed a secondary analysis of data from a longitudinal quasi-experimental study of residents who could transfer independently or with the assistance of one person. FIM assessments were completed at up to three time points by researchers using interviews. RAI-MDS assessments, completed by nursing home staff, were matched to the FIM assessment by nearest time. FIM and RAI-MDS assessments were correlated based on time between assessments using Pearson's correlation. Items for activities of daily living (ADL) from the RAI-MDS were rescaled using two previously published crosswalks. Motor and ADL subscales were also used, containing eight and six items, respectively. A total of 362 paired interviews and assessments were collected from 130 residents. The mean scores and standard deviations were as follows: FIM: 19.64 (7.60); William's RAI-MDS crosswalk: 18.04 (5.25); and Velozo's RAI-MDS crosswalk: 18.09 (6.50). Using both crosswalks, most items showed medium (r > 0.3) or large (r > 0.5) correlations, even at greater than 41 days between assessments. Subscales showed large correlations for all time intervals for both crosswalks. The RAI-MDS remains stable when data are collected greater than 41 days from the FIM assessment. These findings should add confidence in the RAI-MDS data and its clinical utility.

  7. Affirming the Value of the Resident Assessment Instrument: Minimum Data Set Version 2.0 for Nursing Home Decision-Making and Quality Improvement

    PubMed Central

    Drummond, Lindsay S.; Slaughter, Susan E.; Jones, C. Allyson; Wagg, Adrian S.; Batchelor-Murphy, Melissa

    2015-01-01

    Background: We examined the agreement over time of the physical functioning domains of the Resident Assessment Instrument: Minimum Data Set Version 2.0 (RAI-MDS) and the Functional Independence Measure (FIM) in nursing home residents with dementia. Methods: We completed a secondary analysis of data from a longitudinal quasi-experimental study of residents who could transfer independently or with the assistance of one person. FIM assessments were completed at up to three time points by researchers using interviews. RAI-MDS assessments, completed by nursing home staff, were matched to the FIM assessment by nearest time. FIM and RAI-MDS assessments were correlated based on time between assessments using Pearson’s correlation. Items for activities of daily living (ADL) from the RAI-MDS were rescaled using two previously published crosswalks. Motor and ADL subscales were also used, containing eight and six items, respectively. Results: A total of 362 paired interviews and assessments were collected from 130 residents. The mean scores and standard deviations were as follows: FIM: 19.64 (7.60); William’s RAI-MDS crosswalk: 18.04 (5.25); and Velozo’s RAI-MDS crosswalk: 18.09 (6.50). Using both crosswalks, most items showed medium (r > 0.3) or large (r > 0.5) correlations, even at greater than 41 days between assessments. Subscales showed large correlations for all time intervals for both crosswalks. Conclusions: The RAI-MDS remains stable when data are collected greater than 41 days from the FIM assessment. These findings should add confidence in the RAI-MDS data and its clinical utility. PMID:27417788

  8. Decision making with probabilitic and possibilistic assessments

    SciTech Connect

    Sudkamp, T.

    1996-12-31

    System models are constructed to provide tools for both situation assessment and decision analysis. Two distinct types of information are used in system modeling: external information provided by mechanical sensors or human observation and internal information that describes relationships between components of the system. The former type of information is frequently represented by probability estimates, fuzzy sets, or other techniques for representing uncertain or ambiguous information while the latter type is represented by logical relations, rules, or other variations of predicate calculus. Modeling complex system requires the ability to combine the internal system relationships with the information that describes the current assessment of the status of the system. Updating an assessment incorporates sensor information and propagates it through the relational constraints of the system. Two strategies have been introduced to attempt to integrate probabilistic and possibilistic information: probability-possibility transformations and consistency measures. Consistency measures have been designed to analyze the degree of agreement of possibilistic and probabilistic interpretations of the same data. In this paper we consider the problem of assessing the consistency of probabilistic and possibilistic information obtained from different sources. Criteria for possibilistic-probabilistic consistency measures are developed using inclusion measures for fuzzy sets.

  9. Assessment of Health Decision Making Skills of Adolescents.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nelson, Gary D.

    Although the development of rational decision making skills among school age populations has been identified as a goal of school health education programs, few measurement tools or methods exist to assess such skills. In order to develop an instrument for assessing adolescent health decision-making skills, a preliminary health decision making…

  10. Assessment of Health Decision Making Skills of Adolescents.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nelson, Gary D.

    Although the development of rational decision making skills among school age populations has been identified as a goal of school health education programs, few measurement tools or methods exist to assess such skills. In order to develop an instrument for assessing adolescent health decision-making skills, a preliminary health decision making…

  11. Using NASA EOS to Assess Air Quality and Health Risks Associated with the Virginia Dismal Swamp Fires of 2011 for Improved Decision Making

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hebbar, V.

    2012-12-01

    The Great Dismal Swamp has always experienced recurring wildfires that are part of a natural cycle of ecological growth and succession. However, the Lateral West Fire in 2011 was the product of two factors; an ongoing regional drought and a lightning strike. The fire burned from August to late November and was a challenge to extinguish because of the highly organic peat ecosystem. The fire released smoke that was reported over 200 miles north of the origin. The combustion of organic peat content augmented PM2.5, PM10, and carbon monoxide levels enough to exceed federal air quality limits. In order to analyze the effects, MODIS (Moderate-resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) aboard Aqua and Terra and Aqua's AIRS (Atmospheric Infrared Sounder) were used. The satellites were used to discern aerosol distribution and chemical content of the fire's smoke plumes. In addition, data taken from NASA Langley's High Spectral Resolution LiDAR from flights conducted during the time period in conjunction with CALIPSO's CALIOP (Cloud-Aerosol LiDAR with Orthogonal Polarization) sensor offered vertical cross sections of aerosol tracking and air quality analysis. Finally, Meteorology-based trajectories and concentration plots from NOAA's HYSPLIT (Hybrid Single Particle Lagrangian Integrated Trajectory) model added theoretical smoke plume direction and distribution information to compare with observed data. With the utilization of NASA Earth and airborne observing systems in conjunction with models were able to analyze the spread of smoke, aerosols, and its effects on air quality to provide a method that can be used by concerned agencies in an effort to protect regional environment and public health in the case of future exceptional and wildfire events.; MODIS AOD and CALIPSO 532nm attenuated backscatter along with NOAA HYSPLIT Frequency model on August 22nd, indicating smoke direction and particles in the atmosphere.

  12. Quality of Life Assessment.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gore, Peter H.

    Explaining the use of overlay methodology in the assessment of rural social service this paper describes a technique of visual juxtaposition wherein information is matched with geographic location. To ascertain whether senior citizen centers are located in areas of client concentration, for example, this model superimposes the location of senior…

  13. Quality Assessment in Action.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hawk, Thomas R.

    In 1985, an ad hoc committee was appointed to conduct a comprehensive examination of the educational effectiveness of the Community College of Philadelphia (CCP). The principles governing the assessment emphasized students' educational goals; cognitive and non-cognitive outcomes; differences among subgroups within the student population;…

  14. 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.

  15. 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…

  16. [Medical education and quality of decision-making: Is there an evidence-based relationship?].

    PubMed

    Nendaz, M

    2011-07-01

    A medical decision when facing a clinical problem is the result of a complex process involving clinical reasoning and decision-making components. Several biases and external factors may influence this process. Educational interventions may be helpful to modify some of those factors and enhance the quality of decision-making, such as the training of clinical reasoning, making physicians aware of potential biases, or training them to use some tools brought by the evidence-based medicine movement. However, the impact of such interventions remains difficult to quantify because high-quality data are lacking and few studies really assess patient outcomes. This article reviews the available evidence of interventions aiming at improving the quality of decision-making and stresses the importance of involving clinician teachers in medical education research. Copyright © 2010 Société nationale française de médecine interne (SNFMI). Published by Elsevier SAS. All rights reserved.

  17. Probabilistic Risk Assessment to Inform Decision Making: Frequently Asked Questions

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    General concepts and principles of Probabilistic Risk Assessment (PRA), describe how PRA can improve the bases of Agency decisions, and provide illustrations of how PRA has been used in risk estimation and in describing the uncertainty in decision making.

  18. Competence and Quality in Real-Life Decision Making

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    What distinguishes a competent decision maker and how should the issue of decision quality be approached in a real-life context? These questions were explored in three studies. In Study 1, using a web-based questionnaire and targeting a community sample, we investigated the relationships between objective and subjective indicators of real-life decision-making success. In Study 2 and 3, targeting two different samples of professionals, we explored if the prevalent cognitively oriented definition of decision-making competence could be beneficially expanded by adding aspects of competence in terms of social skills and time-approach. The predictive power for each of these three aspects of decision-making competence was explored for different indicators of real-life decision-making success. Overall, our results suggest that research on decision-making competence would benefit by expanding the definition of competence, by including decision-related abilities in terms of social skills and time-approach. Finally, the results also indicate that individual differences in real-life decision-making success profitably can be approached and measured by different criteria. PMID:26545239

  19. Adaptive Peircean decision aid project summary assessments.

    SciTech Connect

    Senglaub, Michael E.

    2007-01-01

    This efforts objective was to identify and hybridize a suite of technologies enabling the development of predictive decision aids for use principally in combat environments but also in any complex information terrain. The technologies required included formal concept analysis for knowledge representation and information operations, Peircean reasoning to support hypothesis generation, Mill's's canons to begin defining information operators that support the first two technologies and co-evolutionary game theory to provide the environment/domain to assess predictions from the reasoning engines. The intended application domain is the IED problem because of its inherent evolutionary nature. While a fully functioning integrated algorithm was not achieved the hybridization and demonstration of the technologies was accomplished and demonstration of utility provided for a number of ancillary queries.

  20. 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/).

  1. 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.

  2. A fuzzy-logic based decision-making approach for identification of groundwater quality based on groundwater quality indices.

    PubMed

    Vadiati, M; Asghari-Moghaddam, A; Nakhaei, M; Adamowski, J; Akbarzadeh, A H

    2016-12-15

    Due to inherent uncertainties in measurement and analysis, groundwater quality assessment is a difficult task. Artificial intelligence techniques, specifically fuzzy inference systems, have proven useful in evaluating groundwater quality in uncertain and complex hydrogeological systems. In the present study, a Mamdani fuzzy-logic-based decision-making approach was developed to assess groundwater quality based on relevant indices. In an effort to develop a set of new hybrid fuzzy indices for groundwater quality assessment, a Mamdani fuzzy inference model was developed with widely-accepted groundwater quality indices: the Groundwater Quality Index (GQI), the Water Quality Index (WQI), and the Ground Water Quality Index (GWQI). In an effort to present generalized hybrid fuzzy indices a significant effort was made to employ well-known groundwater quality index acceptability ranges as fuzzy model output ranges rather than employing expert knowledge in the fuzzification of output parameters. The proposed approach was evaluated for its ability to assess the drinking water quality of 49 samples collected seasonally from groundwater resources in Iran's Sarab Plain during 2013-2014. Input membership functions were defined as "desirable", "acceptable" and "unacceptable" based on expert knowledge and the standard and permissible limits prescribed by the World Health Organization. Output data were categorized into multiple categories based on the GQI (5 categories), WQI (5 categories), and GWQI (3 categories). Given the potential of fuzzy models to minimize uncertainties, hybrid fuzzy-based indices produce significantly more accurate assessments of groundwater quality than traditional indices. The developed models' accuracy was assessed and a comparison of the performance indices demonstrated the Fuzzy Groundwater Quality Index model to be more accurate than both the Fuzzy Water Quality Index and Fuzzy Ground Water Quality Index models. This suggests that the new hybrid fuzzy

  3. [Prediction of regional soil quality based on mutual information theory integrated with decision tree algorithm].

    PubMed

    Lin, Fen-Fang; Wang, Ke; Yang, Ning; Yan, Shi-Guang; Zheng, Xin-Yu

    2012-02-01

    In this paper, some main factors such as soil type, land use pattern, lithology type, topography, road, and industry type that affect soil quality were used to precisely obtain the spatial distribution characteristics of regional soil quality, mutual information theory was adopted to select the main environmental factors, and decision tree algorithm See 5.0 was applied to predict the grade of regional soil quality. The main factors affecting regional soil quality were soil type, land use, lithology type, distance to town, distance to water area, altitude, distance to road, and distance to industrial land. The prediction accuracy of the decision tree model with the variables selected by mutual information was obviously higher than that of the model with all variables, and, for the former model, whether of decision tree or of decision rule, its prediction accuracy was all higher than 80%. Based on the continuous and categorical data, the method of mutual information theory integrated with decision tree could not only reduce the number of input parameters for decision tree algorithm, but also predict and assess regional soil quality effectively.

  4. 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...

  5. 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...

  6. Air quality modeling and decisions for ozone reduction strategies.

    PubMed

    Roth, Philip M; Reynolds, Steven D; Tesche, Thomas W

    2005-10-01

    Despite the widespread application of photochemical air quality models (AQMs) in U.S. state implementation planning (SIP) for attainment of the ambient ozone standard, documentation for the reliability of projections has remained highly subjective. An "idealized" evaluation framework is proposed that provides a means for assessing reliability. Applied to 18 cases of regulatory modeling in the early 1990s in North America, a comparative review of these applications is reported. The intercomparisons suggest that more than two thirds of these AQM applications suffered from having inadequate air quality and meteorological databases. Emissions representations often were unreliable; uncertainties were too high. More than two thirds of the performance evaluation efforts were judged to be substandard compared with idealized goals. Meteorological conditions chosen according regulatory guidelines were limited to one or two cases and tended to be similar, thus limiting the extent to which public policy makers could be confident that the emission controls adopted would yield attainment for a broad range of adverse atmospheric conditions. More than half of the studies reviewed did not give sufficient attention to addressing the potential for compensating errors. Corroborative analyses were conducted in only one of the 18 studies reviewed. Insufficient attention was given to the estimation of model and/or input database errors, uncertainties, or variability in all of the cases examined. However, recent SIP and policy-related regional modeling provides evidence of substantial improvements in the underlying science and available modeling systems used for regulatory decision making. Nevertheless, the availability of suitable databases to support increasingly sophisticated modeling continues to be a concern for many locations. Thus, AQM results may still be subject to significant uncertainties. The evaluative process used here provides a framework for modelers and public policy

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. Decision Making in Assessment and Early Intervention Planning.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Crais, Elizabeth R.; Roberts, Joanne E.

    1991-01-01

    This article presents a series of decision trees to help in planning assessment and intervention with handicapped children between three months and five years of age. A series of assessment questions lead to suggestions for intervention. Steps in using the decision trees are given and a case example presented. (Author/DB)

  10. 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

  11. 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. 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Clinical decision support systems: data quality management and governance.

    PubMed

    Liaw, Siaw-Teng

    2013-01-01

    This chapter examines data quality management (DQM) and information governance (IG) of electronic decision support (EDS) systems so that they are safe and fit for use by clinicians and patients and their carers. This is consistent with the ISO definition of data quality as being fit for purpose. The scope of DQM & IG should range from data creation and collection in clinical settings, through cleaning and, where obtained from multiple sources, linkage, storage, use by the EDS logic engine and algorithms, knowledge base and guidance provided, to curation and presentation. It must also include protocols and mechanisms to monitor the safety of EDS, which will feedback into DQM & IG activities. Ultimately, DQM & IG must be integrated across the data cycle to ensure that the EDS systems provide guidance that leads to safe and effective clinical decisions and care.

  13. Decision-support tools for the assessment process

    SciTech Connect

    Whelan, Gene; Pelton, Mitch A.; Dorow, Kevin E.

    2004-06-14

    A new software system is under development that provides a framework to link disparate assessment software and databases for site-specific, regional, or national analyses. This system represents the merger of the Framework for Risk Analysis in Multimedia Environmental Systems (FRAMES), which performs site-specific assessments, and Multi-media, Multi-pathway, Multi-receptor Risk Assessment (3MRA) methodology, which performs regional and national assessments. This Merged System is an icon-driven, site-layout platform, which represents an interactive means by which the user graphically constructs a conceptualization of the problem by visually expressing the assessment, indicating sources of contamination, contaminant travel pathways through the environment, linkages between contamination and people or wildlife, and impacts associated with the contamination. It processes data as part of a systems-based assessment and is an open-architecture, object-oriented framework, which contains ''sockets'' for a collection of databases and computer codes that will transparently simulate elements of transport, exposure, and risk assessment, including contaminant source and release to and through overland soils, vadose and saturated zones, air, surface water, food supply, intake human health impacts, sensitivity/uncertainty, ecological impacts, with the ability to expand into areas including Geographical Information System (GIS), remediation technology, cost analysis, Data Quality Objectives, life-cycle management, and conceptual site design. A user can choose from a list of models, and the assessment path forward can be visually presented, which describes the models and their linkages from source through receptor to the decision-making endpoint.

  14. 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.

  15. 36 CFR 220.7 - Environmental assessment and decision notice.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... 36 Parks, Forests, and Public Property 2 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Environmental assessment and... AGRICULTURE NATIONAL ENVIRONMENTAL POLICY ACT (NEPA) COMPLIANCE § 220.7 Environmental assessment and decision notice. (a) Environmental assessment. An environmental assessment (EA) shall be prepared for proposals as...

  16. 36 CFR 220.7 - Environmental assessment and decision notice.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... 36 Parks, Forests, and Public Property 2 2011-07-01 2011-07-01 false Environmental assessment and... AGRICULTURE NATIONAL ENVIRONMENTAL POLICY ACT (NEPA) COMPLIANCE § 220.7 Environmental assessment and decision notice. (a) Environmental assessment. An environmental assessment (EA) shall be prepared for proposals as...

  17. 36 CFR 220.7 - Environmental assessment and decision notice.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... 36 Parks, Forests, and Public Property 2 2013-07-01 2013-07-01 false Environmental assessment and... AGRICULTURE NATIONAL ENVIRONMENTAL POLICY ACT (NEPA) COMPLIANCE § 220.7 Environmental assessment and decision notice. (a) Environmental assessment. An environmental assessment (EA) shall be prepared for proposals as...

  18. 36 CFR 220.7 - Environmental assessment and decision notice.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... 36 Parks, Forests, and Public Property 2 2014-07-01 2014-07-01 false Environmental assessment and... AGRICULTURE NATIONAL ENVIRONMENTAL POLICY ACT (NEPA) COMPLIANCE § 220.7 Environmental assessment and decision notice. (a) Environmental assessment. An environmental assessment (EA) shall be prepared for proposals as...

  19. 36 CFR 220.7 - Environmental assessment and decision notice.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... 36 Parks, Forests, and Public Property 2 2012-07-01 2012-07-01 false Environmental assessment and... AGRICULTURE NATIONAL ENVIRONMENTAL POLICY ACT (NEPA) COMPLIANCE § 220.7 Environmental assessment and decision notice. (a) Environmental assessment. An environmental assessment (EA) shall be prepared for proposals as...

  20. What Is a "Good" Treatment Decision? Decisional Control, Knowledge, Treatment Decision Making, and Quality of Life in Men with Clinically Localized Prostate Cancer.

    PubMed

    Orom, Heather; Biddle, Caitlin; Underwood, Willie; Nelson, Christian J; Homish, D Lynn

    2016-08-01

    We explored whether active patient involvement in decision making and greater patient knowledge are associated with better treatment decision-making experiences and better quality of life (QOL) among men with clinically localized prostate cancer. Localized prostate cancer treatment decision making is an advantageous model for studying patient treatment decision-making dynamics because there are multiple treatment options and a lack of empirical evidence to recommend one over the other; consequently, it is recommended that patients be fully involved in making the decision. Men with newly diagnosed clinically localized prostate cancer (N = 1529) completed measures of decisional control, prostate cancer knowledge, and decision-making experiences (decisional conflict and decision-making satisfaction and difficulty) shortly after they made their treatment decision. Prostate cancer-specific QOL was assessed at 6 months after treatment. More active involvement in decision making and greater knowledge were associated with lower decisional conflict and higher decision-making satisfaction but greater decision-making difficulty. An interaction between decisional control and knowledge revealed that greater knowledge was only associated with greater difficulty for men actively involved in making the decision (67% of sample). Greater knowledge, but not decisional control, predicted better QOL 6 months after treatment. Although men who are actively involved in decision making and more knowledgeable may make more informed decisions, they could benefit from decisional support (e.g., decision-making aids, emotional support from providers, strategies for reducing emotional distress) to make the process easier. Men who were more knowledgeable about prostate cancer and treatment side effects at the time that they made their treatment decision may have appraised their QOL as higher because they had realistic expectations about side effects. © The Author(s) 2016.

  1. What is a “good” treatment decision?: Decisional control, knowledge, treatment decision-making, and quality of life in men with clinically localized prostate cancer

    PubMed Central

    Orom, Heather; Biddle, Caitlin; Underwood, Willie; Nelson, Christian J.; Homish, D. Lynn

    2016-01-01

    Objective We explored whether active patient involvement in decision making and greater patient knowledge are associated with better treatment decision making experiences and better quality of life (QOL) among men with clinically localized prostate cancer. Localized prostate cancer treatment decision-making is an advantageous model for studying patient treatment decision-making dynamics as there are multiple treatment options and a lack of empirical evidence to recommend one over the other; consequently, it is recommended that patients be fully involved in making the decision. Methods Men with newly diagnosed clinically localized prostate cancer (N=1529) completed measures of decisional control, prostate cancer knowledge, and their decision-making experience (decisional conflict, and decision-making satisfaction and difficulty) shortly after they made their treatment decision. Prostate cancer-specific QOL was assessed 6-months after treatment. Results More active involvement in decision making and greater knowledge were associated with lower decisional conflict and higher decision-making satisfaction, but greater decision-making difficulty. An interaction between decisional control and knowledge revealed that greater knowledge was only associated with greater difficulty for men actively involved in making the decision (67% of sample). Greater knowledge, but not decisional control predicted better QOL 6-months post-treatment. Conclusion Although men who are actively involved in decision making and more knowledgeable may make more informed decisions, they could benefit from decisional support (e.g., decision-making aids, emotional support from providers, strategies for reducing emotional distress) to make the process easier. Men who were more knowledgeable about prostate cancer and treatment side effects at the time they made their treatment decision may have appraised their QOL as higher because they had realistic expectations about side effects. PMID:26957566

  2. Mixing Methods in Assessing Coaches' Decision Making

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vergeer, Ineke; Lyle, John

    2007-01-01

    Mixing methods has recently achieved respectability as an appropriate approach to research design, offering a variety of advantages (Tashakkori & Teddlie, 2003). The purpose of this paper is to outline and evaluate a mixed methods approach within the domain of coaches' decision making. Illustrated with data from a policy-capturing study on…

  3. Merging Air Quality and Public Health Decision Support Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hudspeth, W. B.; Bales, C. L.

    2003-12-01

    The New Mexico Air Quality Mapper (NMAQM) is a Web-based, open source GIS prototype application that Earth Data Analysis Center is developing under a NASA Cooperative Agreement. NMAQM enhances and extends existing data and imagery delivery systems with an existing Public Health system called the Rapid Syndrome Validation Project (RSVP). RSVP is a decision support system operating in several medical and public health arenas. It is evolving to ingest remote sensing data as input to provide early warning of human health threats, especially those related to anthropogenic atmospheric pollutants and airborne pathogens. The NMAQM project applies measurements of these atmospheric pollutants, derived from both remotely sensed data as well as from in-situ air quality networks, to both forecasting and retrospective analyses that influence human respiratory health. NMAQM provides a user-friendly interface for visualizing and interpreting environmentally-linked epidemiological phenomena. The results, and the systems made to provide the information, will be applicable not only to decision-makers in the public health realm, but also to air quality organizations, demographers, community planners, and other professionals in information technology, and social and engineering sciences. As an accessible and interactive mapping and analysis application, it allows environment and health personnel to study historic data for hypothesis generation and trend analysis, and then, potentially, to predict air quality conditions from daily data acquisitions. Additional spin off benefits to such users include the identification of gaps in the distribution of in-situ monitoring stations, the dissemination of air quality data to the public, and the discrimination of local vs. more regional sources of air pollutants that may bear on decisions relating to public health and public policy.

  4. 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

  5. An Assessment of Reading Compliance Decisions among Undergraduate Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sharma, Amit; Van Hoof, Bert; Pursel, Barton

    2013-01-01

    Research suggests that reading compliance among undergraduate students is low. This study assesses the factors that influence students' decisions to comply with their assigned course readings using two theoretical underpinnings: students' self-rationing ability of time and construal effects on their decision process. Data collected through focus…

  6. Development of instruments to measure the quality of breast cancer treatment decisions

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Clara N.; Dominik, Rosalie; Levin, Carrie A.; Barry, Michael J.; Cosenza, Carol; O’Connor, Annette M.; Mulley Jr, Albert G.; Sepucha, Karen R.

    2010-01-01

    Abstract Background  Women with early‐stage breast cancer face a multitude of decisions. The quality of a decision can be measured by the extent to which the treatment reflects what is most important to an informed patient. Reliable and valid measures of patients’ knowledge and their goals and concerns related to breast cancer treatments are needed to assess the decision quality. Objective  To identify a set of key facts and goals relevant to each of three breast cancer treatment decisions (surgery, reconstruction and adjuvant chemotherapy and hormone therapy) and to evaluate the validity of the methods used to identify them. Methods  Candidate facts and goals were chosen based on evidence review and qualitative studies with breast cancer patients and providers. Cross‐sectional surveys of patients and providers were conducted for each decision. The accuracy, importance and completeness of the items were examined. Results  Thirty‐eight facts (11–14 per decision) and 27 goals (8–10 per decision) were identified. An average of 17 patients and 21 providers responded to each survey. The sets of facts were accurate and complete for all three decisions. The sets of goals and concerns were important for surgery and reconstruction, but not chemotherapy/hormone therapy. Patients and providers disagreed about the relative importance of several key facts and goals. Conclusions  Overall, breast cancer patients and providers found the sets of facts and goals accurate, important and complete for three treatment decisions. Because patients’ and providers’ perspectives are different, it is vital that instrument development should include items reflecting both views. PMID:20550591

  7. Determinants of judgment and decision making quality: the interplay between information processing style and situational factors

    PubMed Central

    Ayal, Shahar; Rusou, Zohar; Zakay, Dan; Hochman, Guy

    2015-01-01

    A framework is presented to better characterize the role of individual differences in information processing style and their interplay with contextual factors in determining decision making quality. In Experiment 1, we show that individual differences in information processing style are flexible and can be modified by situational factors. Specifically, a situational manipulation that induced an analytical mode of thought improved decision quality. In Experiment 2, we show that this improvement in decision quality is highly contingent on the compatibility between the dominant thinking mode and the nature of the task. That is, encouraging an intuitive mode of thought led to better performance on an intuitive task but hampered performance on an analytical task. The reverse pattern was obtained when an analytical mode of thought was encouraged. We discuss the implications of these results for the assessment of decision making competence, and suggest practical directions to help individuals better adjust their information processing style to the situation at hand and make optimal decisions. PMID:26284011

  8. The xeroderma pigmentosum pathway: decision tree analysis of DNA quality.

    PubMed

    Naegeli, Hanspeter; Sugasawa, Kaoru

    2011-07-15

    The nucleotide excision repair (NER) system is a fundamental cellular stress response that uses only a handful of DNA binding factors, mutated in the cancer-prone syndrome xeroderma pigmentosum (XP), to detect an astounding diversity of bulky base lesions, including those induced by ultraviolet light, electrophilic chemicals, oxygen radicals and further genetic insults. Several of these XP proteins are characterized by a mediocre preference for damaged substrates over the native double helix but, intriguingly, none of them recognizes injured bases with sufficient selectivity to account for the very high precision of bulky lesion excision. Instead, substrate versatility as well as damage specificity and strand selectivity are achieved by a multistage quality control strategy whereby different subunits of the XP pathway, in succession, interrogate the DNA double helix for a distinct abnormality in its structural or dynamic parameters. Through this step-by-step filtering procedure, the XP proteins operate like a systematic decision making tool, generally known as decision tree analysis, to sort out rare damaged bases embedded in a vast excess of native DNA. The present review is focused on the mechanisms by which multiple XP subunits of the NER pathway contribute to the proposed decision tree analysis of DNA quality in eukaryotic cells.

  9. Multiple criteria decision analysis for health technology assessment.

    PubMed

    Thokala, Praveen; Duenas, Alejandra

    2012-12-01

    Multicriteria decision analysis (MCDA) has been suggested by some researchers as a method to capture the benefits beyond quality adjusted life-years in a transparent and consistent manner. The objectives of this article were to analyze the possible application of MCDA approaches in health technology assessment and to describe their relative advantages and disadvantages. This article begins with an introduction to the most common types of MCDA models and a critical review of state-of-the-art methods for incorporating multiple criteria in health technology assessment. An overview of MCDA is provided and is compared against the current UK National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence health technology appraisal process. A generic MCDA modeling approach is described, and the different MCDA modeling approaches are applied to a hypothetical case study. A comparison of the different MCDA approaches is provided, and the generic issues that need consideration before the application of MCDA in health technology assessment are examined. There are general practical issues that might arise from using an MCDA approach, and it is suggested that appropriate care be taken to ensure the success of MCDA techniques in the appraisal process. Copyright © 2012 International Society for Pharmacoeconomics and Outcomes Research (ISPOR). Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Linking Assessment to Decision Making in Water Resources Planning - Decision Making Frameworks and Case Study Evaluations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Broman, D.; Gangopadhyay, S.; Simes, J.

    2015-12-01

    Climate assessments have become an accepted and commonly used component of long term water management and planning. There is substantial variation in the methods used in these assessments; however, managers and decision-makers have come to value their utility to identify future system limitations, and to evaluate future alternatives to ensure satisfactory system performance. A new set of decision-making frameworks have been proposed, including robust decision making (RDM), and decision scaling, that directly address the deep uncertainties found in both future climate, and non-climatic factors. Promising results have been obtained using these new frameworks, offering a more comprehensive understanding of future conditions leading to failures, and identification of measures to address these failures. Data and resource constraints have limited the use of these frameworks within the Bureau of Reclamation. We present here a modified framework that captures the strengths of previously proposed methods while using a suite of analysis tool that allow for a 'rapid climate assessment' to be performed. A scalable approach has been taken where more complex tools can be used if project resources allow. This 'rapid assessment' is demonstrated through two case studies on the Santa Ana and Colorado Rivers where previous climate assessments have been completed. Planning-level measures are used to compare how decision making is affected when using this new decision making framework.

  11. 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.

  12. Assessing clinical decision making: is the ideal system feasible?

    PubMed

    Dubois, R W; Brook, R H

    1988-01-01

    While caring for patients, physicians make a variety of decisions. Can current methods adequately determine whether these decisions are correct? If not, what improvements are needed? This paper begins with a review of several explicit methods to assess physician decision making. It then describes a more comprehensive system that would use Bayesian logic to assess whether a physician responded appropriately to the needs of an individual patient. Although sophisticated branching logic may be theoretically desirable, it may not be feasible. The paper concludes by proposing an explicit, potentially practical method that would judiciously use branching logic.

  13. Individualizing generic decision models using assessments as evidence.

    PubMed

    Scott, George C; Shachter, Ross D

    2005-08-01

    Complex decision models in expert systems often depend upon a number of utilities and subjective probabilities for an individual. Although these values can be estimated for entire populations or demographic subgroups, a model should be customized to the individual's specific parameter values. This process can be onerous and inefficient for practical decisions. We propose an interactive approach for incrementally improving our knowledge about a specific individual's parameter values, including utilities and probabilities, given a decision model and a prior joint probability distribution over the parameter values. We define the concept of value of elicitation and use it to determine dynamically the next most informative elicitation for a given individual. We evaluated the approach using an example model and demonstrate that we can improve the decision quality by focusing on those parameter values most material to the decision.

  14. Decision quality instrument for treatment of hip and knee osteoarthritis: a psychometric evaluation

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background A high quality decision requires that patients who meet clinical criteria for surgery are informed about the options (including non-surgical alternatives) and receive treatments that match their goals. The aim of this study was to evaluate the psychometric properties and clinical sensibility of a patient self report instrument, to measure the quality of decisions about total joint replacement for knee or hip osteoarthritis. Methods The performance of the Hip/Knee Osteoarthritis Decision Quality Instrument (HK-DQI) was evaluated in two samples: (1) a cross-sectional mail survey with 489 patients and 77 providers (study 1); and (2) a randomized controlled trial of a patient decision aid with 138 osteoarthritis patients considering total joint replacement (study 2). The HK-DQI results in two scores. Knowledge items are summed to create a total knowledge score, and a set of goals and concerns are used in a logistic regression model to develop a concordance score. The concordance score measures the proportion of patients whose treatment matched their goals. Hypotheses related to acceptability, feasibility, reliability and validity of the knowledge and concordance scores were examined. Results In study 1, the HK-DQI was completed by 382 patients (79%) and 45 providers (58%), and in study 2 by 127 patients (92%), with low rates of missing data. The DQI-knowledge score was reproducible (ICC = 0.81) and demonstrated discriminant validity (68% decision aid vs. 54% control, and 78% providers vs. 61% patients) and content validity. The concordance score demonstrated predictive validity, as patients whose treatments were concordant with their goals had more confidence and less regret with their decision compared to those who did not. Conclusions The HK-DQI is feasible and acceptable to patients. It can be used to assess whether patients with osteoarthritis are making informed decisions about surgery that are concordant with their goals. PMID:21729315

  15. 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…

  16. 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…

  17. Small Unit Decision Making (SUDM) Assessment Battery

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-11-21

    been completed. Specifically, we would like to thank Mr. John DeForest , Academics Director of The Basic School, and Col Todd Desgrosseilliers, the...3 Uses and Benefits of the SUDM Assessment Battery...especially given our operational definitions. Uses and Benefits of the SUDM Assessment Battery To improve policy development and implementation

  18. Entrustment Decisions: Bringing the Patient Into the Assessment Equation.

    PubMed

    Ten Cate, Olle

    2017-06-01

    With the increased interest in the use of entrustable professional activities (EPAs) in undergraduate medical education (UME) and graduate medical education (GME) come questions about the implications for assessment. Entrustment assessment combines the evaluation of learners' knowledge, skills, and behaviors with the evaluation of their readiness to be entrusted to perform critical patient care responsibilities. Patient safety, then, should be an explicit component of educational assessments. The validity of these assessments in the clinical workplace becomes the validity of the entrustment decisions.Modern definitions of the validity of educational assessments stress the importance of the purpose of the test and the consequences of the learner's score. Thus, if the learner is a trainee in a clinical workplace and entrusting her or him to perform an EPA is the focus of the assessment, the validity argument for that assessment should include a patient safety component.While the decision to allow a learner to practice unsupervised is typically geared toward GME, similar decisions are made in UME regarding learners' readiness to perform EPAs with indirect supervision (i.e., without a supervisor present in the room). Three articles in this issue address implementing EPAs in UME.The author of this Commentary discusses the possibility of implementing true entrustment decisions in UME. He argues that bringing the patient into the educational assessment equation is marrying educational and health care responsibilities. Building trust in learners from early on, gradually throughout the continuum of medical education, may reframe our vision on assessment in the workplace.

  19. Addendum to Air Quality: Decision Support Tools, Partner Plans, Working Groups, Committees

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Holekamp, Kara; Frisbie, Troy; Estep, Lee

    2005-01-01

    In the original report dated February 11, 2005, the utility of the NASA Earth science data in the air quality activities of other agencies and organizations was assessed by reviewing strategic and mission plans and by conducting personal interviews with agency experts to identify and investigate agencies with the potential for partnership with NASA. The overarching agency strategic plans were reviewed and commonalities such as the desire for partnerships and technology development were noted. The addendum to the original report contains such information about the Tennessee Valley Authority and will be inserted in Section 2.6 of "Air Quality Decision Support Tools, Partner Plans, Working Groups, Committees".

  20. Addendum to Air Quality: Decision Support Tools, Partner Plans, Working Groups, Committees

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Holekamp, Kara; Frisbie, Troy; Estep, Lee

    2005-01-01

    In the original report dated February 11, 2005, the utility of NASA Earth science data in the air quality activities of other agencies and organizations was assessed by reviewing strategic and mission plans and by conducting personal interviews with agency experts to identify and investigate agencies with the potential for partnership with NASA. The overarching agency strategic plans were reviewed and commonalities such as the desire for partnerships and technology development were noted. This addendum to the original report contains such information about the Tennessee Valley Authority and will be inserted as Section 2.6 of "Air Quality: Decision Support Tools, Partner Plans, Working Groups, Committees."

  1. 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.

  2. Implementing a Quality Needs Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cuiccio, Cary

    2012-01-01

    Districts nationwide are facing budget cuts that, to some, feel more like funding cliffs. Accordingly, school teams are re-examining their personnel, programs, and schedules so that they can make difficult decisions about where to spend resources to realize the greatest improvement. The principals who are able to make decisions with data from…

  3. Implementing a Quality Needs Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cuiccio, Cary

    2012-01-01

    Districts nationwide are facing budget cuts that, to some, feel more like funding cliffs. Accordingly, school teams are re-examining their personnel, programs, and schedules so that they can make difficult decisions about where to spend resources to realize the greatest improvement. The principals who are able to make decisions with data from…

  4. The Information Quality Triangle: a methodology to assess clinical information quality.

    PubMed

    Choquet, Rémy; Qouiyd, Samiha; Ouagne, David; Pasche, Emilie; Daniel, Christel; Boussaïd, Omar; Jaulent, Marie-Christine

    2010-01-01

    Building qualitative clinical decision support or monitoring based on information stored in clinical information (or EHR) systems cannot be done without assessing and controlling information quality. Numerous works have introduced methods and measures to qualify and enhance data, information models and terminologies quality. This paper introduces an approach based on an Information Quality Triangle that aims at providing a generic framework to help in characterizing quality measures and methods in the context of the integration of EHR data in a clinical datawarehouse. We have successfully experimented the proposed approach at the HEGP hospital in France, as part of the DebugIT EU FP7 project.

  5. Assessment of unconscious decision aids applied to complex patient-centered medical decisions.

    PubMed

    Manigault, Andrew Wilhelm; Handley, Ian Michael; Whillock, Summer Rain

    2015-02-05

    was manipulated by having participants memorize semi-random (high), line structured (low), or no dot patterns and recall these intermittently with their decision reports. Overall then, participants were randomly assigned to the conditions of a 3 (thought condition) by 3 (cognitive-load level) between-subjects design. A logistic regression analysis indicated that the odds of participants choosing the best treatment were 2.25 times higher in the unconscious-thought condition compared to the immediate-decision condition (b=.81, Wald=4.32, P=.04, 95% CI 1.048-4.836), and 2.39 times greater compared to the conscious-thought condition (b=.87, Wald=4.87, P=.027, 95% CI 1.103-5.186). No difference was observed between the conscious-thought condition compared to the immediate-decision condition, and cognitive load manipulations did not affect choices or alter the above finding. This research demonstrates a plausible benefit of unconscious thinking as a decision aid for complex medical decisions, and represents the first use of unconscious thought processes as a patient-centered medical decision aid. Further, the quality of decisions reached unconsciously does not appear to be affected by the amount of cognitive load participants experienced.

  6. Measuring decision quality: psychometric evaluation of a new instrument for breast cancer surgery.

    PubMed

    Sepucha, Karen R; Belkora, Jeffrey K; Chang, Yuchiao; Cosenza, Carol; Levin, Carrie A; Moy, Beverly; Partridge, Ann; Lee, Clara N

    2012-06-08

    The purpose of this paper is to examine the acceptability, feasibility, reliability and validity of a new decision quality instrument that assesses the extent to which patients are informed and receive treatments that match their goals. Cross-sectional mail survey of recent breast cancer survivors, providers and healthy controls and a retest survey of survivors. The decision quality instrument includes knowledge questions and a set of goals, and results in two scores: a breast cancer surgery knowledge score and a concordance score, which reflects the percentage of patients who received treatments that match their goals. Hypotheses related to acceptability, feasibility, discriminant validity, content validity, predictive validity and retest reliability of the survey instrument were examined. We had responses from 440 eligible patients, 88 providers and 35 healthy controls. The decision quality instrument was feasible to implement in this study, with low missing data. The knowledge score had good retest reliability (intraclass correlation coefficient=0.70) and discriminated between providers and patients (mean difference 35%, p<0.001). The majority of providers felt that the knowledge items covered content that was essential for the decision. Five of the 6 treatment goals met targets for content validity. The five goals had moderate to strong retest reliability (0.64 to 0.87). The concordance score was 89%, indicating that a majority had treatments concordant with that predicted by their goals. Patients who had concordant treatment had similar levels of confidence and regret as those who did not. The decision quality instrument met the criteria of feasibility, reliability, discriminant and content validity in this sample. Additional research to examine performance of the instrument in prospective studies and more diverse populations is needed.

  7. Decision trees in selection of featured determined food quality.

    PubMed

    Dębska, B; Guzowska-Świder, B

    2011-10-31

    The determination of food quality, authenticity and the detection of adulterations are problems of increasing importance in food chemistry. Recently, chemometric classification techniques and pattern recognition analysis methods for wine and other alcoholic beverages have received great attention and have been largely used. Beer is a complex mixture of components: on one hand a volatile fraction, which is responsible for its aroma, and on the other hand, a non-volatile fraction or extract consisting of a great variety of substances with distinct characteristics. The aim of this study was to consider parameters which contribute to beer differentiation according to the quality grade. Chemical (e.g. pH, acidity, dry extract, alcohol content, CO(2) content) and sensory features (e.g. bitter taste, color) were determined in 70 beer samples and used as variables in decision tree techniques. This pattern recognition techniques applied to the dataset were able to extract information useful in obtaining a satisfactory classification of beer samples according to their quality grade. Feature selection procedures indicated which features are the most discriminating for classification.

  8. The role of decision analytic modeling in the health economic assessment of spinal intervention.

    PubMed

    Edwards, Natalie C; Skelly, Andrea C; Ziewacz, John E; Cahill, Kevin; McGirt, Matthew J

    2014-10-15

    Narrative review. To review the common tenets, strengths, and weaknesses of decision modeling for health economic assessment and to review the use of decision modeling in the spine literature to date. For the majority of spinal interventions, well-designed prospective, randomized, pragmatic cost-effectiveness studies that address the specific decision-in-need are lacking. Decision analytic modeling allows for the estimation of cost-effectiveness based on data available to date. Given the rising demands for proven value in spine care, the use of decision analytic modeling is rapidly increasing by clinicians and policy makers. This narrative review discusses the general components of decision analytic models, how decision analytic models are populated and the trade-offs entailed, makes recommendations for how users of spine intervention decision models might go about appraising the models, and presents an overview of published spine economic models. A proper, integrated, clinical, and economic critical appraisal is necessary in the evaluation of the strength of evidence provided by a modeling evaluation. As is the case with clinical research, all options for collecting health economic or value data are not without their limitations and flaws. There is substantial heterogeneity across the 20 spine intervention health economic modeling studies summarized with respect to study design, models used, reporting, and general quality. There is sparse evidence for populating spine intervention models. Results mostly showed that interventions were cost-effective based on $100,000/quality-adjusted life-year threshold. Spine care providers, as partners with their health economic colleagues, have unique clinical expertise and perspectives that are critical to interpret the strengths and weaknesses of health economic models. Health economic models must be critically appraised for both clinical validity and economic quality before altering health care policy, payment strategies, or

  9. Environmental Decision Making and Information Technology: Issues Assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Barg, S.; Fletcher, T.; Mechling, J.; Tonn, B.; Turner, R.

    1999-05-01

    This report presents a summary of the Information Technology and Environmental Decision Making Workshop that was held at Harvard University, October 1-3, 1998. Over sixty participants from across the US took part in discussions that focused on the current practice of using information technology to support environmental decision making and on future considerations of information technology development, information policies, and data quality issues in this area. Current practice is focusing on geographic information systems and visualization tools, Internet applications, and data warehousing. In addition, numerous organizations are developing environmental enterprise systems to integrate environmental information resources. Plaguing these efforts are issues of data quality (and public trust), system design, and organizational change. In the future, much effort needs to focus on building community-based environmental decision-making systems and processes, which will be a challenge given that exactly what needs to be developed is largely unknown and that environmental decision making in this arena has been characterized by a high level of conflict. Experimentation and evaluation are needed to contribute to efficient and effective learning about how best to use information technology to improve environmental decision making.

  10. Application of the Stockholm Hierarchy to Defining the Quality of Reference Intervals and Clinical Decision Limits

    PubMed Central

    Sikaris, Ken

    2012-01-01

    The Stockholm Hierarchy is a professional consensus created to define the preferred approaches to defining analytical quality. The quality of a laboratory measurement can also be classified by the quality of the limits that the value is compared with, namely reference interval limits and clinical decision limits. At the highest level in the hierarchy would be placed clinical decision limits based on clinical outcome studies. The second level would include both formal reference interval studies (studies of intra and inter-individual variations) and clinical decision limits based on clinician survey. While these approaches are commonly used, they require a lot of resources to define accurately. Placing laboratory experts on the third level would suggest that although they can also define reference intervals by consensus, theirs aren’t as well regarded as clinician defined limits which drive clinical behaviour. Ideally both analytical and clinical considerations should be made, with clinicians and laboratorians both having important information to consider. The fourth level of reference intervals would be for those defined by survey or by regulatory authorities because of the focus on what is commonly achieved rather than what is necessarily correct. Finally, laboratorians know that adopting reference limits from kit inserts or textbook publications is problematic because both methodological issues and reference populations are often not the same as their own. This approach would rank fifth and last. When considering which so called ‘common’ or ‘harmonised reference intervals’ to adopt, both these characteristics and the quality of individual studies need to be assessed. Finally, we should also be aware that reference intervals describe health and physiology while clinical decision limits focus on disease and pathology, and unless we understand and consider the two corresponding issues of test specificity and test sensitivity, we cannot assure the quality of

  11. 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…

  12. 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.

  13. 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…

  14. School-Based Management: An Approach to Decision-Making Quality in Egyptian General Secondary Schools

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Elmelegy, Reda Ibrahim

    2015-01-01

    The current research aims at clarifying how school-based management (SBM) can contribute to achieve the decision-making quality in Egyptian general secondary schools and determine the requirements of quality decision-making. It depends on the descriptive method in order to acknowledge the basics of the SBM and its relationship with the quality of…

  15. School-Based Management: An Approach to Decision-Making Quality in Egyptian General Secondary Schools

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Elmelegy, Reda Ibrahim

    2015-01-01

    The current research aims at clarifying how school-based management (SBM) can contribute to achieve the decision-making quality in Egyptian general secondary schools and determine the requirements of quality decision-making. It depends on the descriptive method in order to acknowledge the basics of the SBM and its relationship with the quality of…

  16. Use of Probabilistic Risk Assessment in Shuttle Decision Making Process

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Boyer, Roger L.; Hamlin, Teri, L.

    2011-01-01

    This slide presentation reviews the use of Probabilistic Risk Assessment (PRA) to assist in the decision making for the shuttle design and operation. Probabilistic Risk Assessment (PRA) is a comprehensive, structured, and disciplined approach to identifying and analyzing risk in complex systems and/or processes that seeks answers to three basic questions: (i.e., what can go wrong? what is the likelihood of these occurring? and what are the consequences that could result if these occur?) The purpose of the Shuttle PRA (SPRA) is to provide a useful risk management tool for the Space Shuttle Program (SSP) to identify strengths and possible weaknesses in the Shuttle design and operation. SPRA was initially developed to support upgrade decisions, but has evolved into a tool that supports Flight Readiness Reviews (FRR) and near real-time flight decisions. Examples of the use of PRA for the shuttle are reviewed.

  17. Improving decision quality in healthcare with an Error Prevention Model (EPM).

    PubMed

    Chio, David T S; Kushniruk, Andre; Borycki, Elizabeth

    2013-01-01

    Human factors involved in decision quality are critical issues in healthcare. In this paper, issues related to the impact of human factors on decision quality in healthcare are considered. Specifically, the focus is on the issue of reducing human error as well as improving decision quality. An Error Prevention Model (EPM) is presented for considering tools and techniques that can be used to analyze complex errors that may be considered latent.

  18. Elements of informed consent and decision quality were poorly correlated in informed consent documents.

    PubMed

    Brehaut, Jamie C; Carroll, Kelly; Elwyn, Glyn; Saginur, Raphael; Kimmelman, Jonathan; Shojania, Kaveh; Syrowatka, Ania; Nguyen, Trang; Fergusson, Dean

    2015-12-01

    Although informed consent (IC) documents must contain specific elements, inclusion of these elements may be insufficient to encourage high-quality decision making. We assessed the extent to which documents conform to IC standards and how well conformity to decision quality (DQ) standards can be predicted by IC standards, IC document characteristics, and study characteristics. We obtained 139 IC documents for trials registered with ClinicalTrials.gov from study investigators. Using a four-point scale, two raters independently assessed each IC document on 36 IC standard items and 9 DQ items. Overall agreement between raters across all 45 items was 93%. Across the 36 IC standards items, conformity was generally quite high but variable, with 20 items showing conformity of 80% or more and seven items showing conformity of 50% or lower. IC standards concordance, overall length of the IC document, and country of study were all significant predictors of DQ standards but together accounted for less than 20% of the variance in DQ standards. Conformity to recommendations for improving IC documents was relatively high but variable. The extent to which an IC document conformed to these recommendations was only moderately related to whether it conformed to recommendations for improving DQ. Existing IC regulations may not describe the optimal approach to helping people make good study participation decisions. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Clinical Decision Support and Perioperative Peripheral Nerve Injury: A Quality Improvement Project.

    PubMed

    Bouyer-Ferullo, Sharon; Androwich, Ida M; Dykes, Patricia C

    2015-06-01

    Decision support at the point of care has been demonstrated to be an effective tool in providing a safe environment and improving patient outcomes. The operating room is typically an area where advanced technology is introduced to nurses on a regular basis. This quality improvement project focused on preventing a peripheral nerve injury, which is an example of a postoperative adverse event that is considered preventable. Injury of a peripheral nerve is the result of compression, hyperextension, flexion, or ischemia surrounding the nerve. The goals for this project were to improve the knowledge of peripheral nerve injury of the operating room nurses, design and implement a peripheral nerve injury assessment screen that could provide decision support within the operating room record, improve the nursing documentation of peripheral nerve injury interventions, and (long term) decrease the incidence of peripheral nerve injury. A decision support screen within the operating room record was designed to supplement the operating room nurse's risk assessment for peripheral nerve injury. The components of this project involved a preliminary and postproject surveys on peripheral nerve injury knowledge, an educational presentation, and a retrospective random review of nursing documentation in the operating room electronic health records. Project results demonstrated a significant increase in nursing documentation of peripheral nerve injury interventions (63%-92%) and a positive attitude toward their exposure to basic decision support (P = .046). Recommendations for future studies and establishing a standardized coding system for peripheral nerve injury identification were identified.

  20. Developing a quality criteria framework for patient decision aids: online international Delphi consensus process

    PubMed Central

    Elwyn, Glyn; O'Connor, Annette; Stacey, Dawn; Volk, Robert; Edwards, Adrian; Coulter, Angela; Thomson, Richard; Barratt, Alexandra; Barry, Michael; Bernstein, Steven; Butow, Phyllis; Clarke, Aileen; Entwistle, Vikki; Feldman-Stewart, Deb; Holmes-Rovner, Margaret; Llewellyn-Thomas, Hilary; Moumjid, Nora; Mulley, Al; Ruland, Cornelia; Sepucha, Karen; Sykes, Alan; Whelan, Tim

    2006-01-01

    Objective To develop a set of quality criteria for patient decision support technologies (decision aids). Design and setting Two stage web based Delphi process using online rating process to enable international collaboration. Participants Individuals from four stakeholder groups (researchers, practitioners, patients, policy makers) representing 14 countries reviewed evidence summaries and rated the importance of 80 criteria in 12 quality domains ona1to9 scale. Second round participants received feedback from the first round and repeated their assessment of the 80 criteria plus three new ones. Main outcome measure Aggregate ratings for each criterion calculated using medians weighted to compensate for different numbers in stakeholder groups; criteria rated between 7 and 9 were retained. Results 212 nominated people were invited to participate. Of those invited, 122 participated in the first round (77 researchers, 21 patients, 10 practitioners, 14 policy makers); 104/122 (85%) participated in the second round. 74 of 83 criteria were retained in the following domains: systematic development process (9/9 criteria); providing information about options (13/13); presenting probabilities (11/13); clarifying and expressing values (3/3); using patient stories (2/5); guiding/coaching (3/5); disclosing conflicts of interest (5/5); providing internet access (6/6); balanced presentation of options (3/3); using plain language (4/6); basing information on up to date evidence (7/7); and establishing effectiveness (8/8). Conclusions Criteria were given the highest ratings where evidence existed, and these were retained. Gaps in research were highlighted. Developers, users, and purchasers of patient decision aids now have a checklist for appraising quality. An instrument for measuring quality of decision aids is being developed. PMID:16908462

  1. The Roles of Cost and Quality Information in Medicare Advantage Plan Enrollment Decisions: an Observational Study.

    PubMed

    Reid, Rachel O; Deb, Partha; Howell, Benjamin L; Conway, Patrick H; Shrank, William H

    2016-02-01

    To facilitate informed decision-making in the Medicare Advantage marketplace, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services publishes plan information on the Medicare Plan Finder website, including costs, benefits, and star ratings reflecting quality. Little is known about how beneficiaries weigh costs versus quality in enrollment decisions. We aimed to assess associations between publicly reported Medicare Advantage plan attributes (i.e., costs, quality, and benefits) and brand market share and beneficiaries' enrollment decisions. We performed a nationwide, beneficiary-level cross-sectional analysis of 847,069 beneficiaries enrolling in Medicare Advantage for the first time in 2011. Matching beneficiaries with their plan choice sets, we used conditional logistic regression to estimate associations between plan attributes and enrollment to assess the proportion of enrollment variation explained by plan attributes and willingness to pay for quality. Relative to the total variation explained by the model, the variation in plan choice explained by premiums (25.7 %) and out-of-pocket costs (11.6 %) together explained nearly three times as much as quality ratings (13.6 %), but brand market share explained the most variation (35.3 %). Further, while beneficiaries were willing to pay more in total annual combined premiums and out-of-pocket costs for higher-rated plans (from $4,154.93 for 2.5-star plans to $5,698.66 for 5-star plans), increases in willingness to pay diminished at higher ratings, from $549.27 (95 %CI: $541.10, $557.44) for a rating increase from 2.5 to 3 stars to $68.22 (95 %CI: $61.44, $75.01) for an increase from 4.5 to 5 stars. Willingness to pay varied among subgroups: beneficiaries aged 64-65 years were more willing to pay for higher-rated plans, while black and rural beneficiaries were less willing to pay for higher-rated plans. While beneficiaries prefer higher-quality and lower-cost Medicare Advantage plans, marginal utility for quality

  2. Assessing toxicological data quality: basic principles, existing schemes and current limitations.

    PubMed

    Przybylak, K R; Madden, J C; Cronin, M T D; Hewitt, M

    2012-07-01

    Existing toxicological data may be used for a variety of purposes such as hazard and risk assessment or toxicity prediction. The potential use of such data is, in part, dependent upon their quality. Consideration of data quality is of key importance with respect to the application of chemicals legislation such as REACH. Whether data are being used to make regulatory decisions or build computational models, the quality of the output is reflected by the quality of the data employed. Therefore, the need to assess data quality is an important requirement for making a decision or prediction with an appropriate level of confidence. This study considers the biological and chemical factors that may impact upon toxicological data quality and discusses the assessment of data quality. Four general quality criteria are introduced and existing data quality assessment schemes are discussed. Two case study datasets of skin sensitization data are assessed for quality providing a comparison of existing assessment methods. This study also discusses the limitations and difficulties encountered during quality assessment, including the use of differing quality schemes and the global versus chemical-specific assessments of quality. Finally, a number of recommendations are made to aid future data quality assessments.

  3. Using measurement uncertainty in decision-making and conformity assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pendrill, L. R.

    2014-08-01

    Measurements often provide an objective basis for making decisions, perhaps when assessing whether a product conforms to requirements or whether one set of measurements differs significantly from another. There is increasing appreciation of the need to account for the role of measurement uncertainty when making decisions, so that a ‘fit-for-purpose’ level of measurement effort can be set prior to performing a given task. Better mutual understanding between the metrologist and those ordering such tasks about the significance and limitations of the measurements when making decisions of conformance will be especially useful. Decisions of conformity are, however, currently made in many important application areas, such as when addressing the grand challenges (energy, health, etc), without a clear and harmonized basis for sharing the risks that arise from measurement uncertainty between the consumer, supplier and third parties. In reviewing, in this paper, the state of the art of the use of uncertainty evaluation in conformity assessment and decision-making, two aspects in particular—the handling of qualitative observations and of impact—are considered key to bringing more order to the present diverse rules of thumb of more or less arbitrary limits on measurement uncertainty and percentage risk in the field. (i) Decisions of conformity can be made on a more or less quantitative basis—referred in statistical acceptance sampling as by ‘variable’ or by ‘attribute’ (i.e. go/no-go decisions)—depending on the resources available or indeed whether a full quantitative judgment is needed or not. There is, therefore, an intimate relation between decision-making, relating objects to each other in terms of comparative or merely qualitative concepts, and nominal and ordinal properties. (ii) Adding measures of impact, such as the costs of incorrect decisions, can give more objective and more readily appreciated bases for decisions for all parties concerned. Such

  4. Agreement of medical decisions in occupational health as a quality requirement.

    PubMed

    Franco, Giuliano

    2006-08-01

    Workers' medical examination by the occupational physician (OPs) is a decision-making process whose output consists of a variety of evaluations, including assessment of fitness for work. The medical literature reports that there is no complete agreement among OPs assessing the same workers, evidencing a critical aspect of professional performance. This study aims at evaluating the inter-individual variability of medical decisions by different occupational physicians. Four specialists in occupational medicine participated in the study. Each specialist examined 100 records of subjects with different medical conditions selected from about 2,500 health care workers. Each physician completed a form including the following items: assessment of fitness for work, advice to workers, need of further investigations, report of occupational disease, recommendation for the general practitioner. To assess the inter-individual variability the percent agreement and the agreement strength or Cohen's kappa were measured. The study shows a variable agreement in the assessment of fitness for work among different professionals, with percent agreement ranging from 58% for the whole group to an average of 77% for physicians' pairs. By taking into account the variability expected by chance, the agreement ranged from fair to substantial. The agreement of other decisions (workers' advice, referral to other specialists, request of further investigation, report of occupational disease, recommendation for the general practitioner) was more variable. The study shows that an inter-individual variability exists for some decisions taken by OPs. According to the need to continuously improve professional practice, in the absence of qualitative standards based on the outcome, reduction of inter-individual variability that should be considered as a quality requirement of the performance of the occupational physician.

  5. 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…

  6. Assessing quality in volcanic ash soils

    Treesearch

    Terry L. Craigg; Steven W. Howes

    2007-01-01

    Forest managers must understand how changes in soil quality resulting from project implementation affect long-term productivity and watershed health. Volcanic ash soils have unique properties that affect their quality and function; and which may warrant soil quality standards and assessment techniques that are different from other soils. We discuss the concept of soil...

  7. 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…

  8. 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…

  9. 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…

  10. 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.

  11. Situation assessment in the Paladin tactical decision generation system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mcmanus, John W.; Chappell, Alan R.; Arbuckle, P. Douglas

    1992-01-01

    Paladin is a real-time tactical decision generator for air combat engagements. Paladin uses specialized knowledge-based systems and other Artificial Intelligence (AI) programming techniques to address the modern air combat environment and agile aircraft in a clear and concise manner. Paladin is designed to provide insight into both the tactical benefits and the costs of enhanced agility. The system was developed using the Lisp programming language on a specialized AI workstation. Paladin utilizes a set of air combat rules, an active throttle controller, and a situation assessment module that have been implemented as a set of highly specialized knowledge-based systems. The situation assessment module was developed to determine the tactical mode of operation (aggressive, defensive, neutral, evasive, or disengagement) used by Paladin at each decision point in the air combat engagement. Paladin uses the situation assessment module; the situationally dependent modes of operation to more accurately represent the complex decision-making process of human pilots. This allows Paladin to adapt its tactics to the current situation and improves system performance. Discussed here are the details of Paladin's situation assessment and modes of operation. The results of simulation testing showing the error introduced into the situation assessment module due to estimation errors in positional and geometric data for the opponent aircraft are presented. Implementation issues for real-time performance are discussed and several solutions are presented, including Paladin's use of an inference engine designed for real-time execution.

  12. Needs Assessment for the Use of NASA Remote Sensing Data for Regulatory Water Quality

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Spiering, Bruce; Underwood, Lauren

    2010-01-01

    This slide presentation reviews the assessment of the needs that NASA can use for the remote sensing of water quality. The goal of this project is to provide information for decision-making activities (water quality standards) using remotely sensed/satellite based water quality data from MODIS and Landsat data.

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

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    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 within the LCA community have developed different methodologies to address and communicate the data quality of Life Cycle Inventory (LCI) data. Despite advances in this field, the LCA community is still plagued by the lack of reproducible data quality results and documentation. To address these issues, US EPA has created this guidance in order to further support reproducible life cycle inventory data quality results and to inform users of the proper application of the US EPA supported data quality system. The work for this report was begun in December 2014 and completed as of April 2016.The updated data quality system includes a novel approach to the pedigree matrix by addressing data quality at the flow and the process level. Flow level indicators address source reliability, temporal correlation, geographic correlation, technological correlation and data sampling methods. The process level indicators address the level of review the unit process has undergone and its completeness. This guidance is designed to be updatable as part of the LCA Research Center’s continuing commitment to data quality advancements. Life cycle assessment is increasingly being used as a tool to identify areas of

  14. Multiple Criteria Decision Making: Efficient Outcome Assessments with Evolutionary Optimization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaliszewski, Ignacy; Miroforidis, Janusz

    We propose to derive assessments of outcomes to MCDM problems instead of just outcomes and carry decision making processes with the former. In contrast to earlier works in that direction, which to calculate assessments make use of subsets of the efficient set (shells), here we provide formulas for calculation of assessments based on the use of upper and lower approximations (upper and lower shells) of the efficient set, derived by evolutionary optimization. Hence, by replacing shells, which are to be in general derived by optimization, by pairs of upper and lower shells, exact optimization methods can be eliminated from MCDM.

  15. Flaws in the Decision-Making Process: Assessment and Acceptance in the Decision to Launch Flight 51-L.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Renz, Mary Ann; Greg, John

    1988-01-01

    Argues that it was the failure of the decision-making process, rather than the mode of risk assessment, which led to the decision to launch the Space Shuttle Challenger. Identifies the phrasing of the decision question and a shift in the burden of proof as specific problems of the process. (MS)

  16. Flaws in the Decision-Making Process: Assessment and Acceptance in the Decision to Launch Flight 51-L.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Renz, Mary Ann; Greg, John

    1988-01-01

    Argues that it was the failure of the decision-making process, rather than the mode of risk assessment, which led to the decision to launch the Space Shuttle Challenger. Identifies the phrasing of the decision question and a shift in the burden of proof as specific problems of the process. (MS)

  17. Using basic geographic information systems functionality to support sustainable forest management decision making and post-decision assessments

    Treesearch

    Ronald E. McRoberts; R. James Barbour; Krista M. Gebert; Greg C. Liknes; Mark D. Nelson; Dacia M. Meneguzzo; et al.

    2006-01-01

    Sustainable management of natural resources requires informed decision making and post-decision assessments of the results of those decisions. Increasingly, both activities rely on analyses of spatial data in the forms of maps and digital data layers. Fortunately, a variety of supporting maps and data layers rapidly are becoming available. Unfortunately, however, user-...

  18. [Informed decisions: patient and consumer information at the German Agency for Quality in Medicine (ÄZQ)].

    PubMed

    Schaefer, Corinna; Kirschning, Silke

    2010-01-01

    The concept of informed decision making does not only comply with the ideals of the self-determining citizen. In politics and society it is more and more understood as an individual obligation. In order to be capable of making competent decisions regarding treatment options, citizens have to be provided with high quality information. With the aim of facilitating patients' and consumers' orientation in health care questions, the German Agency for Quality in Medicine (ÄZQ) has been committed to developing and promoting the use of reliable patient information for more than ten years. ÄZQ's activities are based on four main principles: development of patient versions of high quality clinical practice guidelines; provision of patient information which has been assessed according to its formal quality; provision of information on the German health care system (checklists); further development of quality standards and methods.

  19. Decision analytic strategies for integrating ecosystem services and risk assessment.

    PubMed

    von Stackelberg, Katherine E

    2013-04-01

    Ecosystem services as a concept and guiding principle are enjoying wide popularity and endorsement from high-level policy thinkers to industry as support for sustainability goals continue to grow. However, explicit incorporation of ecosystem services into decision making still lacks practical implementation at more local scales and faces significant regulatory and technical constraints. Risk assessment represents an example of a regulatory process for which guidance exists that makes it challenging to incorporate ecosystem service endpoints. Technical constraints exist in the quantification of the relationships between ecological functions and services and endpoints valued by humans, and the complexity of those interactions with respect to bundling and stacking. In addition, ecosystem services, by their very definition, represent an anthropogenic construct with no inherent ecological value, which, in practical terms, requires a far more inclusionary decision making process explicitly incorporating a greater diversity of stakeholder values. Despite these constraints, it is possible, given a commitment to sustainable decision making, to simplify the process based on strategic outcomes (e.g., identifying desired end-states in general terms). Decision analytic techniques provide a mechanism for evaluating tradeoffs across key ecosystem services valued by stakeholders and to develop criteria drawn from the entire spectrum of stakeholders in evaluating potential alternatives. This article highlights several examples of ways in which ecosystem service endpoints can be incorporated into the decision-making process.

  20. Assessing decision making in young adult romantic relationships.

    PubMed

    Vennum, Amber; Fincham, Frank D

    2011-09-01

    Romantic relationships among young adults are rich with ambiguity and without a clear, universal progression emphasizing the need for active decision making. Lack of active decision making in romantic relationships can lead to increases in constraints (e.g. pregnancy, shared living space or finances) that promote the continuation of relationships that would have otherwise ended, leading to increased risk of relationship distress. Because there is no available assessment of thoughtfulness regarding relationship decisions, the authors of the present studies report data on the development of one such scale, the Relationship Deciding Scale (RDS). Study 1 (N = 995) reveals the factor structure of the RDS and provides reliability data for the emergent subscales. In Study 2 (N = 963), the obtained three-factor structure (Relationship Confidence, Knowledge of Warning Signs, and Deciding) is tested via confirmatory factor analysis, demonstrates convergent and discriminant validity, and is shown to predict relationship characteristics 14 weeks later. Study 3 (N = 805) shows the sensitivity of the three factors to change through examination of the influence of a semester-long intervention targeted at increasing decision making in relationships. Use of this scale for identifying and intervening with couples or individuals who lack active decision making in relationships may decrease their risk for future relationship distress.

  1. A Decision Support System for Drinking Water Production Integrating Health Risks Assessment

    PubMed Central

    Delpla, Ianis; Monteith, Donald T.; Freeman, Chris; Haftka, Joris; Hermens, Joop; Jones, Timothy G.; Baurès, Estelle; Jung, Aude-Valérie; Thomas, Olivier

    2014-01-01

    The issue of drinking water quality compliance in small and medium scale water services is of paramount importance in relation to the 98/83/CE European Drinking Water Directive (DWD). Additionally, concerns are being expressed over the implementation of the DWD with respect to possible impacts on water quality from forecast changes in European climate with global warming and further anticipated reductions in north European acid emissions. Consequently, we have developed a decision support system (DSS) named ARTEM-WQ (AwaReness Tool for the Evaluation and Mitigation of drinking Water Quality issues resulting from environmental changes) to support decision making by small and medium plant operators and other water stakeholders. ARTEM-WQ is based on a sequential risk analysis approach that includes consideration of catchment characteristics, climatic conditions and treatment operations. It provides a holistic evaluation of the water system, while also assessing human health risks of organic contaminants potentially present in treated waters (steroids, pharmaceuticals, pesticides, bisphenol-a, polychlorobiphenyls, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, petrochemical hydrocarbons and disinfection by-products; n = 109). Moreover, the system provides recommendations for improvement while supporting decision making in its widest context. The tool has been tested on various European catchments and shows a promising potential to inform water managers of risks and appropriate mitigative actions. Further improvements should include toxicological knowledge advancement, environmental background pollutant concentrations and the assessment of the impact of distribution systems on water quality variation. PMID:25046634

  2. A decision support system for drinking water production integrating health risks assessment.

    PubMed

    Delpla, Ianis; Monteith, Donald T; Freeman, Chris; Haftka, Joris; Hermens, Joop; Jones, Timothy G; Baurès, Estelle; Jung, Aude-Valérie; Thomas, Olivier

    2014-07-18

    The issue of drinking water quality compliance in small and medium scale water services is of paramount importance in relation to the 98/83/CE European Drinking Water Directive (DWD). Additionally, concerns are being expressed over the implementation of the DWD with respect to possible impacts on water quality from forecast changes in European climate with global warming and further anticipated reductions in north European acid emissions. Consequently, we have developed a decision support system (DSS) named ARTEM-WQ (AwaReness Tool for the Evaluation and Mitigation of drinking Water Quality issues resulting from environmental changes) to support decision making by small and medium plant operators and other water stakeholders. ARTEM-WQ is based on a sequential risk analysis approach that includes consideration of catchment characteristics, climatic conditions and treatment operations. It provides a holistic evaluation of the water system, while also assessing human health risks of organic contaminants potentially present in treated waters (steroids, pharmaceuticals, pesticides, bisphenol-a, polychlorobiphenyls, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, petrochemical hydrocarbons and disinfection by-products; n = 109). Moreover, the system provides recommendations for improvement while supporting decision making in its widest context. The tool has been tested on various European catchments and shows a promising potential to inform water managers of risks and appropriate mitigative actions. Further improvements should include toxicological knowledge advancement, environmental background pollutant concentrations and the assessment of the impact of distribution systems on water quality variation.

  3. Subjective experience of image quality: attributes, definitions, and decision making of subjective image quality

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leisti, Tuomas; Radun, Jenni; Virtanen, Toni; Halonen, Raisa; Nyman, Göte

    2009-01-01

    Subjective quality rating does not reflect the properties of the image directly, but it is the outcome of a quality decision making process, which includes quantification of subjective quality experience. Such a rich subjective content is often ignored. We conducted two experiments (with 28 and 20 observers), in order to study the effect of paper grade on image quality experience of the ink-jet prints. Image quality experience was studied using a grouping task and a quality rating task. Both tasks included an interview, but in the latter task we examined the relations of different subjective attributes in this experience. We found out that the observers use an attribute hierarchy, where the high-level attributes are more experiential, general and abstract, while low-level attributes are more detailed and concrete. This may reflect the hierarchy of the human visual system. We also noticed that while the observers show variable subjective criteria for IQ, the reliability of average subjective estimates is high: when two different observer groups estimated the same images in the two experiments, correlations between the mean ratings were between .986 and .994, depending on the image content.

  4. Clinical Decision Support System to Enhance Quality Control of Spirometry Using Information and Communication Technologies

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background We recently demonstrated that quality of spirometry in primary care could markedly improve with remote offline support from specialized professionals. It is hypothesized that implementation of automatic online assessment of quality of spirometry using information and communication technologies may significantly enhance the potential for extensive deployment of a high quality spirometry program in integrated care settings. Objective The objective of the study was to elaborate and validate a Clinical Decision Support System (CDSS) for automatic online quality assessment of spirometry. Methods The CDSS was done through a three step process including: (1) identification of optimal sampling frequency; (2) iterations to build-up an initial version using the 24 standard spirometry curves recommended by the American Thoracic Society; and (3) iterations to refine the CDSS using 270 curves from 90 patients. In each of these steps the results were checked against one expert. Finally, 778 spirometry curves from 291 patients were analyzed for validation purposes. Results The CDSS generated appropriate online classification and certification in 685/778 (88.1%) of spirometry testing, with 96% sensitivity and 95% specificity. Conclusions Consequently, only 93/778 (11.9%) of spirometry testing required offline remote classification by an expert, indicating a potential positive role of the CDSS in the deployment of a high quality spirometry program in an integrated care setting. PMID:25600957

  5. Using ecosystem services to inform decisions on U.S. air quality standards.

    PubMed

    Rea, Anne W; Davis, Christine; Evans, David A; Heninger, Brian T; Van Houtven, George

    2012-06-19

    The ecosystem services (ES) framework provides a link between changes in a natural system's structure and function and public welfare. This systematic integration of ecology and economics allows for more consistency and transparency in environmental decision making by enabling valuation of nature's goods and services in a manner that is understood by the public. This policy analysis (1) assesses the utility of the ES conceptual framework in the context of setting a secondary National Ambient Air Quality Standard (NAAQS), (2) describes how economic valuation was used to summarize changes in ES affected by NOx and SOx in the review, and (3) uses the secondary NOxSOx NAAQS review as a case study to highlight the advantages and challenges of quantifying air pollutant effects on ES in a decision making context. Using an ES framework can benefit the decision making process by accounting for environmental, ecological, and social elements in a holistic manner. As formal quantitative linkages are developed between ecosystem structure and function and ES, this framework will increasingly allow for a clearer, more transparent link between changes in air quality and public welfare.

  6. Support for Assessment Practice: Developing the Assessment Design Decisions Framework

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bearman, Margaret; Dawson, Phillip; Boud, David; Bennett, Sue; Hall, Matt; Molloy, Elizabeth

    2016-01-01

    There are many excellent publications outlining features of assessment and feedback design in higher education. However, university educators often find these ideas challenging to realise in practice, as much of the literature focuses on institutional change rather than supporting academics. This paper describes the conceptual development of a…

  7. 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. © 2016 WILEY PERIODICALS, INC.

  8. Probabilistic Risk Assessment for Decision Making During Spacecraft Operations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Meshkat, Leila

    2009-01-01

    Decisions made during the operational phase of a space mission often have significant and immediate consequences. Without the explicit consideration of the risks involved and their representation in a solid model, it is very likely that these risks are not considered systematically in trade studies. Wrong decisions during the operational phase of a space mission can lead to immediate system failure whereas correct decisions can help recover the system even from faulty conditions. A problem of special interest is the determination of the system fault protection strategies upon the occurrence of faults within the system. Decisions regarding the fault protection strategy also heavily rely on a correct understanding of the state of the system and an integrated risk model that represents the various possible scenarios and their respective likelihoods. Probabilistic Risk Assessment (PRA) modeling is applicable to the full lifecycle of a space mission project, from concept development to preliminary design, detailed design, development and operations. The benefits and utilities of the model, however, depend on the phase of the mission for which it is used. This is because of the difference in the key strategic decisions that support each mission phase. The focus of this paper is on describing the particular methods used for PRA modeling during the operational phase of a spacecraft by gleaning insight from recently conducted case studies on two operational Mars orbiters. During operations, the key decisions relate to the commands sent to the spacecraft for any kind of diagnostics, anomaly resolution, trajectory changes, or planning. Often, faults and failures occur in the parts of the spacecraft but are contained or mitigated before they can cause serious damage. The failure behavior of the system during operations provides valuable data for updating and adjusting the related PRA models that are built primarily based on historical failure data. The PRA models, in turn

  9. Probabilistic Risk Assessment for Decision Making During Spacecraft Operations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Meshkat, Leila

    2009-01-01

    Decisions made during the operational phase of a space mission often have significant and immediate consequences. Without the explicit consideration of the risks involved and their representation in a solid model, it is very likely that these risks are not considered systematically in trade studies. Wrong decisions during the operational phase of a space mission can lead to immediate system failure whereas correct decisions can help recover the system even from faulty conditions. A problem of special interest is the determination of the system fault protection strategies upon the occurrence of faults within the system. Decisions regarding the fault protection strategy also heavily rely on a correct understanding of the state of the system and an integrated risk model that represents the various possible scenarios and their respective likelihoods. Probabilistic Risk Assessment (PRA) modeling is applicable to the full lifecycle of a space mission project, from concept development to preliminary design, detailed design, development and operations. The benefits and utilities of the model, however, depend on the phase of the mission for which it is used. This is because of the difference in the key strategic decisions that support each mission phase. The focus of this paper is on describing the particular methods used for PRA modeling during the operational phase of a spacecraft by gleaning insight from recently conducted case studies on two operational Mars orbiters. During operations, the key decisions relate to the commands sent to the spacecraft for any kind of diagnostics, anomaly resolution, trajectory changes, or planning. Often, faults and failures occur in the parts of the spacecraft but are contained or mitigated before they can cause serious damage. The failure behavior of the system during operations provides valuable data for updating and adjusting the related PRA models that are built primarily based on historical failure data. The PRA models, in turn

  10. Assessing the quality of the nation's water resources

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hamilton, Pixie A.

    2002-01-01

    This issue of IMPACT highlights findings from the first decade of studies (1991 to 2001) by the National Water-Quality Assessment (NAWQA) Program of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). The articles also discuss the Program’s approaches and models designed to help understand and estimate the fate and transport of contaminants in different geographic areas and environmental settings and over different time frames. NAWQA was established by Congress in 1991 with a goal of developing long-term, consistent, and comparable science-based information on nationwide water-quality conditions. This information is used to support sound management and policy decisions by decision makers at all levels – local, state, and national – who, every day, face complex regulations and management issues related to water resources.

  11. Prior Degree and Student Assessment Performance: How Can Evidence Guide Decisions on Assessment Policy?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Craig, Pippa; Gordon, Jill; Clarke, Rufus; Oldmeadow, Wendy

    2009-01-01

    This study aimed to provide evidence to guide decisions on the type and timing of assessments in a graduate medical programme, by identifying whether students from particular degree backgrounds face greater difficulty in satisfying the current assessment requirements. We examined the performance rank of students in three types of assessments and…

  12. Quality assessment of fructus psoraleae.

    PubMed

    Qiao, Chun-Feng; Han, Quan-Bin; Song, Jing-Zheng; Mo, Shi-Fu; Kong, Ling-Dong; Kung, Hsiang-Fu; Xua, Hong-Xi

    2006-06-01

    Two newly-reported benzofuran glycosides, named psoralenoside and isopsoralenoside, along with two major coumarins, psoralen and isopsoralen, were simultaneously determined in twenty-three samples of Fructus Psoraleae collected from different growth areas in China. The quantitative method was validated, and the mean recovery rates from fortified samples (n=5) of psoralenoside, isopsoralenoside, psoralen and isopsoralen, were 96.5%, 97.1%, 100.7%, and 99.3% with variation coefficient of 3.1%, 3.6%, 2.3%, and 2.2%, respectively. An interesting biotransformation relationship between the glycosides and the coumarins was revealed on the basis of the quality analysis results. It was also suggested that psoralenoside and isopsoralenoside should be used as key quality markers for Fructus Psoraleae, together with the commonly used psoralen and isopsoralen.

  13. 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.

  14. Combining multicriteria decision analysis, ethics and health technology assessment: applying the EVIDEM decision-making framework to growth hormone for Turner syndrome patients.

    PubMed

    Goetghebeur, Mireille M; Wagner, Monika; Khoury, Hanane; Rindress, Donna; Grégoire, Jean-Pierre; Deal, Cheri

    2010-04-08

    To test and further develop a healthcare policy and clinical decision support framework using growth hormone (GH) for Turner syndrome (TS) as a complex case study. The EVIDEM framework was further developed to complement the multicriteria decision analysis (MCDA) Value Matrix, that includes 15 quantifiable components of decision clustered in four domains (quality of evidence, disease, intervention and economics), with a qualitative tool including six ethical and health system-related components of decision. An extensive review of the literature was performed to develop a health technology assessment report (HTA) tailored to each component of decision, and content was validated by experts. A panel of representative stakeholders then estimated the MCDA value of GH for TS in Canada by assigning weights and scores to each MCDA component of decision and then considered the impact of non-quantifiable components of decision. Applying the framework revealed significant data gaps and the importance of aligning research questions with data needs to truly inform decision. Panelists estimated the value of GH for TS at 41% of maximum value on the MCDA scale, with good agreement at the individual level (retest value 40%; ICC: 0.687) and large variation across panelists. Main contributors to this panel specific value were "Improvement of efficacy", "Disease severity" and "Quality of evidence". Ethical considerations on utility, efficiency and fairness as well as potential misuse of GH had mixed effects on the perceived value of the treatment. This framework is proposed as a pragmatic step beyond the current cost-effectiveness model, combining HTA, MCDA, values and ethics. It supports systematic consideration of all components of decision and available evidence for greater transparency. Further testing and validation is needed to build up MCDA approaches combined with pragmatic HTA in healthcare decision-making.

  15. Brain Hemispheric Consensus and the Quality of Investment Decisions.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Boyd, Michael

    This on-going study explores the hypothesis that stock fund managers who underperform do so because they make bad decisions, and examines whether their choices can be improved by using a decision model that invokes principles of brain hemispheric consensus. The study, begun in fall 1999, involves two groups of business students: the control group…

  16. Cost, Quality, and the Community College Enrollment Decision

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Swiger, Caroline Martin

    2014-01-01

    Numerous studies model whether students enroll in higher education, but few have investigated how students decide where to attend. Even fewer studies have considered how community college students make this nearly first noncompulsory human capital investment decision. This research focuses on the enrollment decisions of students whose first…

  17. Risk assessment and clinical decision making for colorectal cancer screening.

    PubMed

    Schroy, Paul C; Caron, Sarah E; Sherman, Bonnie J; Heeren, Timothy C; Battaglia, Tracy A

    2015-10-01

    Shared decision making (SDM) related to test preference has been advocated as a potentially effective strategy for increasing adherence to colorectal cancer (CRC) screening, yet primary care providers (PCPs) are often reluctant to comply with patient preferences if they differ from their own. Risk stratification advanced colorectal neoplasia (ACN) provides a rational strategy for reconciling these differences. To assess the importance of risk stratification in PCP decision making related to test preference for average-risk patients and receptivity to use of an electronic risk assessment tool for ACN to facilitate SDM. Mixed methods, including qualitative key informant interviews and a cross-sectional survey. PCPs at an urban, academic safety-net institution. Screening preferences, factors influencing patient recommendations and receptivity to use of a risk stratification tool. Nine PCPs participated in interviews and 57 completed the survey. Despite an overwhelming preference for colonoscopy by 95% of respondents, patient risk (67%) and patient preferences (63%) were more influential in their decision making than patient comorbidities (31%; P < 0.001). Age was the single most influential risk factor (excluding family history), with <20% of respondents choosing factors other than age. Most respondents reported that they would be likely to use a risk stratification tool in their practice either 'often' (43%) or sometimes (53%). Risk stratification was perceived to be important in clinical decision making, yet few providers considered risk factors other than age for average-risk patients. Providers were receptive to the use of a risk assessment tool for ACN when recommending an appropriate screening test for select patients. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  18. 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.

  19. Computational study of developing high-quality decision trees

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fu, Zhiwei

    2002-03-01

    Recently, decision tree algorithms have been widely used in dealing with data mining problems to find out valuable rules and patterns. However, scalability, accuracy and efficiency are significant concerns regarding how to effectively deal with large and complex data sets in the implementation. In this paper, we propose an innovative machine learning approach (we call our approach GAIT), combining genetic algorithm, statistical sampling, and decision tree, to develop intelligent decision trees that can alleviate some of these problems. We design our computational experiments and run GAIT on three different data sets (namely Socio- Olympic data, Westinghouse data, and FAA data) to test its performance against standard decision tree algorithm, neural network classifier, and statistical discriminant technique, respectively. The computational results show that our approach outperforms standard decision tree algorithm profoundly at lower sampling levels, and achieves significantly better results with less effort than both neural network and discriminant classifiers.

  20. Assessing quality across healthcare subsystems in Mexico.

    PubMed

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

    2009-01-01

    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.

  1. Evidence-based decision-making 3: Health technology assessment.

    PubMed

    O'Reilly, Daria; Campbell, Kaitryn; Vanstone, Meredith; Bowen, James M; Schwartz, Lisa; Assasi, Nazila; Goeree, Ron

    2015-01-01

    This chapter begins with a brief introduction to health technology assessment (HTA). HTA is concerned with the systematic evaluation of the consequences of the adoption and use of new health technologies and improving the evidence on existing technologies. The objective of mainstream HTA is to support evidence-based decision- and policy-making that encourage the uptake of efficient and effective health care technologies. This chapter provides a basic framework for conducting an HTA as well as some fundamental concepts and challenges in assessing health technologies. A case study of the assessment of drug eluting stents in Ontario is presented to illustrate the HTA process. Whether HTA is beneficial-supporting timely access to needed technologies-or detrimental depends on three critical issues: when the assessment is performed; how it is performed; and how the findings are used.

  2. 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)

  3. 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…

  4. Quality Assessment for a University Curriculum.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hjalmered, Jan-Olof; Lumsden, Kenth

    1994-01-01

    In 1992, a national quality assessment report covering courses in all the Swedish schools of mechanical engineering was presented. This article comments on the general ideas and specific proposals presented, and offers an analysis of the consequences. Presents overall considerations regarding quality issues, the philosophy behind the new…

  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. Measuring the Impact of Diagnostic Decision Support on the Quality of Clinical Decision Making: Development of a Reliable and Valid Composite Score

    PubMed Central

    Ramnarayan, Padmanabhan; Kapoor, Ritika R.; Coren, Michael; Nanduri, Vasantha; Tomlinson, Amanda L.; Taylor, Paul M.; Wyatt, Jeremy C.; Britto, Joseph F.

    2003-01-01

    Objective: Few previous studies evaluating the benefits of diagnostic decision support systems have simultaneously measured changes in diagnostic quality and clinical management prompted by use of the system. This report describes a reliable and valid scoring technique to measure the quality of clinical decision plans in an acute medical setting, where diagnostic decision support tools might prove most useful. Design: Sets of differential diagnoses and clinical management plans generated by 71 clinicians for six simulated cases, before and after decision support from a Web-based pediatric differential diagnostic tool (ISABEL), were used. Measurements: A composite quality score was calculated separately for each diagnostic and management plan by considering the appropriateness value of each component diagnostic or management suggestion, a weighted sum of individual suggestion ratings, relevance of the entire plan, and its comprehensiveness. The reliability and validity (face, concurrent, construct, and content) of these two final scores were examined. Results: Two hundred fifty-two diagnostic and 350 management suggestions were included in the interrater reliability analysis. There was good agreement between raters (intraclass correlation coefficient, 0.79 for diagnoses, and 0.72 for management). No counterintuitive scores were demonstrated on visual inspection of the sets. Content validity was verified by a consultation process with pediatricians. Both scores discriminated adequately between the plans of consultants and medical students and correlated well with clinicians' subjective opinions of overall plan quality (Spearman ρ 0.65, p < 0.01). The diagnostic and management scores for each episode showed moderate correlation (r = 0.51). Conclusion: The scores described can be used as key outcome measures in a larger study to fully assess the value of diagnostic decision aids, such as the ISABEL system. PMID:12925549

  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. Superintendents and Principals Need Quality Public Information That Informs Decisions, Empowers Action. Don't Make Decisions in the Dark

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Data Quality Campaign, 2014

    2014-01-01

    District superintendents or school principals need to be able to access and use high-quality data to make good decisions. Often this data is collected and stored locally, but information that is publicly reported by the state can provide additional value. Although public reporting in a few states is designed to serve information needs, states'…

  11. National water-quality assessment: Future directions of the U.S. Geological Survey

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cohen, Philip; Alley, William M.; Wilber, William G.

    1988-01-01

    Throughout U.S. history, the Nation has made major investments in assessing natural resources, such as soils, minerals, and hydrocarbons. The maintenance and the improvement of water quality has been one of the major areas of public investment and government regulation. One of the contributions the U.S. Geological Survey proposes to make is to provide a strong, high quality National Water-Quality Assessment Program to underpin and unify the Nation's water-quality activities. Such an assessment program will satisfy a decisive share of the attainable, national scale, water quality information objectives.

  12. Decision support for workload assessment - Introducing WC FIELDE

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Casper, Patricia A.; Shively, Robert J.; Hart, Sandra G.

    1987-01-01

    Currently there is a great demand for mental workload evaluation in the course of system design and modification. In light of this demand, a microprocessor-based decision support system has been created called WC FIELDE: Workload Consultant for FIELD Evaluation. The system helps the user select workload measures appropriate to his or her application from the large pool of currently available techniques. Both novices and those with some workload experience may benefit from using WC FIELDE, since the system's operation is entirely transparent and all rules involved in the decision process are available for the user to examine. WC FIELDE recommends several assessment methodologies in decreasing order of appropriateness, and provides additional information on each measure at the end of the program in the form of text files.

  13. Review of Multi-Criteria Decision Aid for Integrated Sustainability Assessment of Urban Water Systems - MCEARD

    EPA Science Inventory

    Integrated sustainability assessment is part of a new paradigm for urban water decision making. Multi-criteria decision aid (MCDA) is an integrative framework used in urban water sustainability assessment, which has a particular focus on utilising stakeholder participation. Here ...

  14. Review of Multi-Criteria Decision Aid for Integrated Sustainability Assessment of Urban Water Systems - MCEARD

    EPA Science Inventory

    Integrated sustainability assessment is part of a new paradigm for urban water decision making. Multi-criteria decision aid (MCDA) is an integrative framework used in urban water sustainability assessment, which has a particular focus on utilising stakeholder participation. Here ...

  15. A framework for assessing Health Economic Evaluation (HEE) quality appraisal instruments

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Health economic evaluations support the health care decision-making process by providing information on costs and consequences of health interventions. The quality of such studies is assessed by health economic evaluation (HEE) quality appraisal instruments. At present, there is no instrument for measuring and improving the quality of such HEE quality appraisal instruments. Therefore, the objectives of this study are to establish a framework for assessing the quality of HEE quality appraisal instruments to support and improve their quality, and to apply this framework to those HEE quality appraisal instruments which have been subject to more scrutiny than others, in order to test the framework and to demonstrate the shortcomings of existing HEE quality appraisal instruments. Methods To develop the quality assessment framework for HEE quality appraisal instruments, the experiences of using appraisal tools for clinical guidelines are used. Based on a deductive iterative process, clinical guideline appraisal instruments identified through literature search are reviewed, consolidated, and adapted to produce the final quality assessment framework for HEE quality appraisal instruments. Results The final quality assessment framework for HEE quality appraisal instruments consists of 36 items organized within 7 dimensions, each of which captures a specific domain of quality. Applying the quality assessment framework to four existing HEE quality appraisal instruments, it is found that these four quality appraisal instruments are of variable quality. Conclusions The framework described in this study should be regarded as a starting point for appraising the quality of HEE quality appraisal instruments. This framework can be used by HEE quality appraisal instrument producers to support and improve the quality and acceptance of existing and future HEE quality appraisal instruments. By applying this framework, users of HEE quality appraisal instruments can become aware

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. A quality assessment of orthodontic patient information leaflets.

    PubMed

    Seehra, Jadbinder; Cockerham, Laura; Pandis, Nikolaos

    2016-01-01

    Patient information leaflets (PILs) are often used to reinforce and provide further information relating to treatment choices, risks, and alternatives. An assessment of the quality of commonly used orthodontic patient information leaflets is lacking. A cross-sectional assessment of patient information leaflets from two international orthodontic societies was undertaken. The quality of each leaflet was assessed using the DISCERN instrument. The readability of each leaflet was assessed using the Flesch Reading Ease instrument, Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level and Simple Measure of Gobbledygook (SMOG) index. Descriptive statistics followed by univariate analysis was conducted. Thirty-six patient information leaflets were identified. Reporting of DISCERN instrument items relating to aims, description of sources, details of additional sources, consequences of no treatment, possible treatment options, and support for a shared decision process was of low quality. The overall quality score for the total sample was 44. The median Flesch Reading Ease, Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level, and SMOG index scores were 70 (interquartile range (IQR) 53.3-73.9), 7.2 (IQR 6-9.7), and 7.3 (IQR 6.7-9.1), respectively. There was a significant difference between the quality (-8.00, 95% CI: -14.62, -1.38, p < 0.001), Flesch Reading Ease (-22.30, 95% CI: -26.77, 17.83, p < 0.001) and the Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level (3.80, 95% CI: 2.74, 4.86, p < 0.001) scores between the two societies' PILs. In relation to the DISCERN instrument, the quality of orthodontic PILs is deemed of moderate quality. There is a significant difference between the quality scores and the readability of PILs from different societies.

  19. Cropland CEAP soil quality assessment update

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    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...

  20. 1999 mask industry quality assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grenon, Brian J.

    1999-12-01

    This paper will summarize the results of the seventh annual mask industry assessment survey. This year there were 12 respondents. The specific responses from the participants have been kept confidential by having the participants send their responses to Arthur Anderson & Company prior to data evaluation. This year we will report the following information: total shipments, total customer returns, mask survival rate, delivery performance, average throughput time and safety records. The data reported will be for the period of 3Q98 through 2Q98. Additionally, we will present any trends that may be apparent in the data. This year's participants are Align-Rite, Dai Nippon Printing, IBM Essex Junction, Photronics/Toppan Texas, Compugraphics, DuPont Photomasks, Northrup-Grumman, Infineon, Taiwan Mask Corporation (TMC), Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Corporation (TSMC) and Innova. In order to maintain some consistency, the format that has been used from past years will be maintained when possible.

  1. 76 FR 4345 - A Method To Assess Climate-Relevant Decisions: Application in the Chesapeake Bay

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-01-25

    ... AGENCY A Method To Assess Climate-Relevant Decisions: Application in the Chesapeake Bay AGENCY... review draft document titled, ``A Method to Assess Climate-Relevant Decisions: Application in the.../conferences/peerreview/register-chesapeake.htm . The draft ``A Method to Assess Climate-Relevant Decisions...

  2. Decision Maker Perception of Information Quality: A Case Study of Military Command and Control

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Morgan, Grayson B.

    2013-01-01

    Decision maker perception of information quality cues from an "information system" (IS) and the process which creates such meta cueing, or data about cues, is a critical yet un-modeled component of "situation awareness" (SA). Examples of common information quality meta cueing for quality criteria include custom ring-tones for…

  3. Decision Maker Perception of Information Quality: A Case Study of Military Command and Control

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Morgan, Grayson B.

    2013-01-01

    Decision maker perception of information quality cues from an "information system" (IS) and the process which creates such meta cueing, or data about cues, is a critical yet un-modeled component of "situation awareness" (SA). Examples of common information quality meta cueing for quality criteria include custom ring-tones for…

  4. Decision-making in structure solution using Bayesian estimates of map quality: the PHENIX autosol wizard

    SciTech Connect

    Terwilliger, Thomas C; Adams, Paul D; Read, Randy J; Mccoy, Airlie J

    2008-01-01

    Ten measures of experimental electron-density-map quality are examined and the skewness of electron density is found to be the best indicator of actual map quality. A Bayesian approach to estimating map quality is developed and used in the PHENIX AutoSol wizard to make decisions during automated structure solution.

  5. Multicriteria Decision Framework for Cybersecurity Risk Assessment and Management.

    PubMed

    Ganin, Alexander A; Quach, Phuoc; Panwar, Mahesh; Collier, Zachary A; Keisler, Jeffrey M; Marchese, Dayton; Linkov, Igor

    2017-09-05

    Risk assessors and managers face many difficult challenges related to novel cyber systems. Among these challenges are the constantly changing nature of cyber systems caused by technical advances, their distribution across the physical, information, and sociocognitive domains, and the complex network structures often including thousands of nodes. Here, we review probabilistic and risk-based decision-making techniques applied to cyber systems and conclude that existing approaches typically do not address all components of the risk assessment triplet (threat, vulnerability, consequence) and lack the ability to integrate across multiple domains of cyber systems to provide guidance for enhancing cybersecurity. We present a decision-analysis-based approach that quantifies threat, vulnerability, and consequences through a set of criteria designed to assess the overall utility of cybersecurity management alternatives. The proposed framework bridges the gap between risk assessment and risk management, allowing an analyst to ensure a structured and transparent process of selecting risk management alternatives. The use of this technique is illustrated for a hypothetical, but realistic, case study exemplifying the process of evaluating and ranking five cybersecurity enhancement strategies. The approach presented does not necessarily eliminate biases and subjectivity necessary for selecting countermeasures, but provides justifiable methods for selecting risk management actions consistent with stakeholder and decisionmaker values and technical data. Published 2017. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the U.S.A.

  6. 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.

  7. SUMAC: Constructing Phylogenetic Supermatrices and Assessing Partially Decisive Taxon Coverage

    PubMed Central

    Freyman, William A.

    2015-01-01

    The amount of phylogenetically informative sequence data in GenBank is growing at an exponential rate, and large phylogenetic trees are increasingly used in research. Tools are needed to construct phylogenetic sequence matrices from GenBank data and evaluate the effect of missing data. Supermatrix Constructor (SUMAC) is a tool to data-mine GenBank, construct phylogenetic supermatrices, and assess the phylogenetic decisiveness of a matrix given the pattern of missing sequence data. SUMAC calculates a novel metric, Missing Sequence Decisiveness Scores (MSDS), which measures how much each individual missing sequence contributes to the decisiveness of the matrix. MSDS can be used to compare supermatrices and prioritize the acquisition of new sequence data. SUMAC constructs supermatrices either through an exploratory clustering of all GenBank sequences within a taxonomic group or by using guide sequences to build homologous clusters in a more targeted manner. SUMAC assembles supermatrices for any taxonomic group recognized in GenBank and is optimized to run on multicore computer systems by parallelizing multiple stages of operation. SUMAC is implemented as a Python package that can run as a stand-alone command-line program, or its modules and objects can be incorporated within other programs. SUMAC is released under the open source GPLv3 license and is available at https://github.com/wf8/sumac. PMID:26648681

  8. Soft Mathematical Aggregation in Safety Assessment and Decision Analysis

    SciTech Connect

    Cooper, J. Arlin

    1999-06-10

    This paper improves on some of the limitations of conventional safety assessment and decision analysis methods. It develops a top-down mathematical method for expressing imprecise individual metrics as possibilistic or fuzzy numbers and shows how they may be combined (aggregated) into an overall metric, also portraying the inherent uncertainty. Both positively contributing and negatively contributing factors are included. Metrics are weighted according to significance of the attribute and evaluated as to contribution toward the attribute. Aggregation is performed using exponential combination of the metrics, since the accumulating effect of such factors responds less and less to additional factors. This is termed soft mathematical aggregation. Dependence among the contributing factors is accounted for by incorporating subjective metrics on overlap of the factors and by correspondingly reducing the overall contribution of these combinations to the overall aggregation. Decisions corresponding to the meaningfulness of the results are facilitated in several ways. First, the results are compared to a soft threshold provided by a sigmoid function. Second, information is provided on input ''Importance'' and ''Sensitivity,'' in order to know where to place emphasis on controls that may be necessary. Third, trends in inputs and outputs are tracked in order to add important information to the decision process. The methodology has been implemented in software.

  9. 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.

  10. Assessing the methodological quality of nonrandomized intervention studies.

    PubMed

    Saunders, L Duncan; Soomro, G Mustafa; Buckingham, Jeanette; Jamtvedt, Gro; Raina, Parminder

    2003-03-01

    In many areas of health care, randomized controlled trials (the best evidence regarding the effectiveness of health care interventions) are lacking and decision-makers have to rely on evidence from nonrandomized studies (NRS). We conducted a Medline search to identify English-language articles describing instruments for assessing the quality of NRS of health care interventions. These instruments varied greatly in scope, in the number and types of items and in developmental rigor. Items commonly included were those related to specification of study questions, allocation method, comparability of groups, and blinding of outcome assessment. We do not support the development of a generic scale to evaluate the methodological quality of nonrandomized intervention studies. Instead, further study should be directed to investigate the degree to which, and the circumstances under which, different methodological characteristics are associated with bias. This information will assist researchers in identifying a priori which methodological characteristics need careful evaluation in particular studies.

  11. Assessing the relevance of ecotoxicological studies for regulatory decision making.

    PubMed

    Rudén, Christina; Adams, Julie; Ågerstrand, Marlene; Brock, Theo Cm; Poulsen, Veronique; Schlekat, Christian E; Wheeler, James R; Henry, Tala R

    2016-09-07

    Regulatory policies in many parts of the world recognize either the utility of or the mandate that all available studies be considered in environmental or ecological hazard and risk assessment (ERA) of chemicals, including studies from the peer-reviewed literature. Consequently, a vast array of different studies and data types need to be considered. The first steps in the evaluation process involve determining whether the study is relevant to the ERA and sufficiently reliable. Relevance evaluation is typically performed using existing guidance but involves application of "expert judgment" by risk assessors. In the present paper, we review published guidance for relevance evaluation and, on the basis of the practical experience within the group of authors, we identify additional aspects and further develop already proposed aspects that should be considered when conducting a relevance assessment for ecotoxicological studies. From a regulatory point of view, the overarching key aspect of relevance concerns the ability to directly or indirectly use the study in ERA with the purpose of addressing specific protection goals and ultimately regulatory decision making. Because ERA schemes are based on the appropriate linking of exposure and effect estimates, important features of ecotoxicological studies relate to exposure relevance and biological relevance. Exposure relevance addresses the representativeness of the test substance, environmental exposure media, and exposure regime. Biological relevance deals with the environmental significance of the test organism and the endpoints selected, the ecological realism of the test conditions simulated in the study, as well as a mechanistic link of treatment-related effects for endpoints to the protection goal identified in the ERA. In addition, uncertainties associated with relevance should be considered in the assessment. A systematic and transparent assessment of relevance is needed for regulatory decision making. The relevance

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. A customisable framework for the assessment of therapies in the solution of therapy decision tasks.

    PubMed

    Manjarrés Riesco, A; Martínez Tomás, R; Mira Mira, J

    2000-01-01

    In current medical research, a growing interest can be observed in the definition of a global therapy-evaluation framework which integrates considerations such as patients preferences and quality-of-life results. In this article, we propose the use of the research results in this domain as a source of knowledge in the design of support systems for therapy decision analysis, in particular with a view to application in oncology. We discuss the incorporation of these considerations in the definition of the therapy-assessment methods involved in the solution of a generic therapy decision task, described in the context of AI software development methodologies such as CommonKADS. The goal of the therapy decision task is to identify the ideal therapy, for a given patient, in accordance with a set of objectives of a diverse nature. The assessment methods applied are based either on data obtained from statistics or on the specific idiosyncrasies of each patient, as identified from their responses to a suite of psychological tests. In the analysis of the therapy decision task we emphasise the importance, from a methodological perspective, of using a rigorous approach to the modelling of domain ontologies and domain-specific data. To this aim we make extensive use of the semi-formal object oriented analysis notation UML to describe the domain level.

  15. 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

  16. Decision Gate Process for Assessment of a Technology Development Portfolio

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kohli, Rajiv; Fishman, Julianna; Hyatt, Mark

    2012-01-01

    The NASA Dust Management Project (DMP) was established to provide technologies (to TRL 6 development level) required to address adverse effects of lunar dust to humans and to exploration systems and equipment, which will reduce life cycle cost and risk, and will increase the probability of sustainable and successful lunar missions. The technology portfolio of DMP consisted of different categories of technologies whose final product is either a technology solution in itself, or one that contributes toward a dust mitigation strategy for a particular application. A Decision Gate Process (DGP) was developed to assess and validate the achievement and priority of the dust mitigation technologies as the technologies progress through the development cycle. The DGP was part of continuous technology assessment and was a critical element of DMP risk management. At the core of the process were technology-specific criteria developed to measure the success of each DMP technology in attaining the technology readiness levels assigned to each decision gate. The DGP accounts for both categories of technologies and qualifies the technology progression from technology development tasks to application areas. The process provided opportunities to validate performance, as well as to identify non-performance in time to adjust resources and direction. This paper describes the overall philosophy of the DGP and the methodology for implementation for DMP, and describes the method for defining the technology evaluation criteria. The process is illustrated by example of an application to a specific DMP technology.

  17. Using health technology assessment for informing coverage decisions in Thailand.

    PubMed

    Mohara, Adun; Youngkong, Sitaporn; Velasco, Román Pérez; Werayingyong, Pitsaphun; Pachanee, Kumaree; Prakongsai, Phusit; Tantivess, Sripen; Tangcharoensathien, Viroj; Lertiendumrong, Jongkol; Jongudomsuk, Pongpisut; Teerawattananon, Yot

    2012-03-01

    This article aims to illustrate and critically analyze the results from the 1-year experience of using health technology assessment (HTA) in the development of the Thai Universal Coverage health benefit package. We review the relevant documents and give a descriptive analysis of outcomes resulting from the development process in 2009-2010. Out of 30 topics nominated by stakeholders for prioritization, 12 were selected for further assessment. A total of five new interventions were recommended for inclusion in the benefit package based on value for money, budget impact, feasibility and equity reasons. Different stakeholders have diverse interests and capabilities to participate in the process. In conclusion, HTA is helpful for informing coverage decisions for health benefit packages because it enhances the legitimacy of policy decisions by increasing the transparency, inclusiveness and accountability of the process. There is room for improvement of the current use of HTA, including providing technical support for patient representatives and civic groups, better communication between health professionals, and focusing more on health promotion and disease prevention.

  18. Assessment of Competence in Clinical Reasoning and Decision-Making under Uncertainty: The Script Concordance Test Method

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ramaekers, Stephan; Kremer, Wim; Pilot, Albert; van Beukelen, Peter; van Keulen, Hanno

    2010-01-01

    Real-life, complex problems often require that decisions are made despite limited information or insufficient time to explore all relevant aspects. Incorporating authentic uncertainties into an assessment, however, poses problems in establishing results and analysing their methodological qualities. This study aims at developing a test on clinical…

  19. Assessment of Competence in Clinical Reasoning and Decision-Making under Uncertainty: The Script Concordance Test Method

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ramaekers, Stephan; Kremer, Wim; Pilot, Albert; van Beukelen, Peter; van Keulen, Hanno

    2010-01-01

    Real-life, complex problems often require that decisions are made despite limited information or insufficient time to explore all relevant aspects. Incorporating authentic uncertainties into an assessment, however, poses problems in establishing results and analysing their methodological qualities. This study aims at developing a test on clinical…

  20. 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.

  1. Decisions for Lake Michigan: A Course on Water Quality Issues.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Purdue Univ., Hammond, IN. Calumet Campus. Inst. for Environmental Education.

    This project's primary concern is the encouragement of citizen participation in the public decision-making processes affecting Lake Michigan. This course manual was designed to serve a dual function: (1) to provide a reference source in the form of curriculum materials for trainees admitted to the program; and (2) to document some of the most…

  2. How military nurses rationalize their postoperative pain assessment decisions.

    PubMed

    Harper, Phil; Ersser, Steven; Gobbi, Mary

    2007-09-01

    This paper is a report of a study to explore how military nurses rationalize their postoperative pain assessment decisions, particularly when these differ from patients' pain self-reports. Postoperative pain is a complex phenomenon influenced by many factors that make assessment difficult. Nurses are taught to believe what patients say about their pain. However, their attitudes to pain are influenced by their cultural background and they may disagree with patients' self-reports. Military nurses belong to a military culture with different pain attitudes that may also influence their postoperative pain assessment. An ethnomethodological ethnography study was carried out in 2003. A purposive sample of 29 British military surgical/orthopaedic Registered Nurses were interviewed to identify their taken-for-granted assumptions and commonsense cultural knowledge surrounding postoperative pain assessment. The data were analysed using a systematic process of inductive reasoning aided by Non-numerical, Unstructured Data for Indexing, Searching and Theorizing (QSR N6, NUD*IST). Participants told two distinct stories in their postoperative pain narratives. The first, the cultural story, described how military nurses normally assess postoperative pain and revealed taken-for-granted assumptions surrounding this assessment. However, when military nurses believe that patients over- or under-report their pain, the cultural story was challenged through a collective story in which nurses used their commonsense knowledge to account for these differences. Postoperative pain assessment within a military culture is complex, but all nurses need to be aware that their socialization into different nursing cultures may influence their attitudes to postoperative pain assessment.

  3. INTEGRATING AIR QUALITY DATA TO INFORM HUMAN HEALTH DECISIONS

    EPA Science Inventory

    The August 1-2, 2005 EPA-NIEHS workshop is addressing the linkages between air quality and human health. My presentation will discuss the strengths and limitations of various databases for relating air quality to health impacts. Specifically, the need for fusing ground-based, s...

  4. ROLE OF MODELS IN AIR QUALITY MANAGEMENT DECISIONS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Within the frame of the US-India bilateral agreement on environmental cooperation, a team of US scientists have been helping India in designing emission control policies to address urban air quality problems. This presentation discusses how air quality models need to be used for ...

  5. ROLE OF MODELS IN AIR QUALITY MANAGEMENT DECISIONS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Within the frame of the US-India bilateral agreement on environmental cooperation, a team of US scientists have been helping India in designing emission control policies to address urban air quality problems. This presentation discusses how air quality models need to be used for ...

  6. INTEGRATING AIR QUALITY DATA TO INFORM HUMAN HEALTH DECISIONS

    EPA Science Inventory

    The August 1-2, 2005 EPA-NIEHS workshop is addressing the linkages between air quality and human health. My presentation will discuss the strengths and limitations of various databases for relating air quality to health impacts. Specifically, the need for fusing ground-based, s...

  7. [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.

  8. Psychometric evaluation of a decision quality instrument for treatment of lumbar herniated disc.

    PubMed

    Sepucha, Karen R; Feibelmann, Sandra; Abdu, William A; Clay, Catharine F; Cosenza, Carol; Kearing, Stephen; Levin, Carrie A; Atlas, Steven J

    2012-08-15

    Retrospective and prospective patient surveys and a physician survey using a sample from American Medical Association master file. To evaluate the performance of a new instrument designed to measure the quality of decisions about treatment of herniated disc. There is growing consensus on the importance of engaging and informing patients to improve the quality of significant medical decisions, yet there are no instruments currently available to measure decision quality. The herniated disc-decision quality instrument (HD-DQI) was developed with input from clinical experts, survey research experts, and patients. The HD-DQI produces 2 scores each scaled to 0% to 100%, with higher scores indicating better quality: (1) a total knowledge score and (2) a concordance score (indicating the percentage of patients who received treatments that matched their goals). We examined hypotheses relating to the acceptability, feasibility, validity, and reliability of the instrument, using data from 3 samples. The HD-DQI survey was feasible to implement and acceptable to patients, with good response rates and low missing data. The knowledge score discriminated between patients who had seen a decision aid or no decision aid (55% vs. 38%, P < 0.001) and between providers and patients (73% vs. 46%, P < 0.001). The knowledge score also had good retest reliability (intraclass correlation coefficient = 0.85). Most patients (78%) received treatments that matched their goals. Patients who received treatments that matched their goals were less likely to regret the decision than those who did not (13% vs. 39%, P = 0.004). The HD-DQI met several criteria for high-quality patient-reported survey instruments. It can be used to determine the quality of decisions for treatment of herniated disc. More work is needed to examine acceptability for use as part of routine patient care.

  9. Managerial Decision-making for Daily Case Allocation Scheduling and the Impact on Perioperative Quality Assurance

    PubMed Central

    Zhu, Minmin; Yang, Zhengli; Liang, Xiao; Lu, Xiaojie; Sahota, Gurmukh; Liu, Renyu; Yi, Lihua

    2017-01-01

    Allocation scheduling for daily surgical cases is a decision-making process tasked to anesthesiologists and nurse managers in the operating room (OR). This manuscript focuses on three major areas: the classification and principles of allocation scheduling on workdays in China, flexible strategies of operational decision-making given differences in planned versus actual OR allocations, and perioperative quality implications of anesthesia scheduling. Improved quality and optimal decision-making in daily surgical case scheduling is seen with shift supervisor-based scheduling of staff and cases when compared with staff and case scheduling managed by the departmental director or chief resident. PMID:28090548

  10. Physician education on decision-making capacity assessment

    PubMed Central

    Charles, Lesley; Parmar, Jasneet; Brémault-Phillips, Suzette; Dobbs, Bonnie; Sacrey, Lori; Sluggett, Bryan

    2017-01-01

    Abstract Objective To examine FPs’ training needs for conducting decision-making capacity assessments (DMCAs) and to determine how training materials, based on a DMCA model, can be adapted for use by FPs. Design A scoping review of the literature and qualitative research methodology (focus groups and structured interviews). Setting Edmonton, Alta. Participants Nine FPs, who practised in various settings, who chose to attend a focus group on DMCAs. Methods A scoping review of the literature to examine the current status of physician education regarding assessment of decision-making capacity, and a focus group and interviews with FPs to ascertain the educational needs of FPs in this area. Main findings Based on the scoping review of the literature, 4 main themes emerged: increasing saliency of DMCAs owing to an aging population, suboptimal DMCA training for physicians, inconsistent approaches to DMCA, and tension between autonomy and protection. The findings of the focus groups and interviews indicate that, while FPs working as independent practitioners or with interprofessional teams are motivated to engage in DMCAs and use the DMCA model for those assessments, several factors impede their conducting DMCAs. The most notable barriers were a lack of education, isolation from interprofessional teams, uneasiness around managing conflict with families, fear of liability, and concerns regarding remuneration. Conclusion This pilot study has helped to inform ways to better train and support FPs in conducting DMCAs. Family physicians are well positioned, with proper training, to effectively conduct DMCAs. To engage FPs in the process, however, the barriers should be addressed. PMID:28115457

  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. Time to decide: Diurnal variations on the speed and quality of human decisions.

    PubMed

    Leone, María Juliana; Fernandez Slezak, Diego; Golombek, Diego; Sigman, Mariano

    2017-01-01

    Human behavior and physiology exhibit diurnal fluctuations. These rhythms are entrained by light and social cues, with vast individual differences in the phase of entrainment - referred as an individual's chronotype - ranging in a continuum between early larks and late owls. Understanding whether decision-making in real-life situations depends on the relation between time of the day and an individual's diurnal preferences has both practical and theoretical implications. However, answering this question has remained elusive because of the difficulty of measuring precisely the quality of a decision in real-life scenarios. Here we investigate diurnal variations in decision-making as a function of an individual's chronotype capitalizing on a vast repository of human decisions: online chess servers. In a chess game, every player has to make around 40 decisions using a finite time budget and both the time and quality of each decision can be accurately determined. We found reliable diurnal rhythms in activity and decision-making policy. During the morning, players adopt a prevention focus policy (slower and more accurate decisions) which is later modified to a promotion focus (faster but less accurate decisions), without daily changes in performance. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  13. 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.

  14. Quality assessment: A performance-based approach to assessments

    SciTech Connect

    Caplinger, W.H.; Greenlee, W.D.

    1993-08-01

    Revision C to US Department of Energy (DOE) Order 5700.6 (6C) ``Quality Assurance`` (QA) brings significant changes to the conduct of QA. The Westinghouse government-owned, contractor-operated (GOCO) sites have updated their quality assurance programs to the requirements and guidance of 6C, and are currently implementing necessary changes. In late 1992, a Westinghouse GOCO team led by the Waste Isolation Division (WID) conducted what is believed to be the first assessment of implementation of a quality assurance program founded on 6C.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. [Making best use of external quality assessment].

    PubMed

    Fried, Roman

    2015-02-01

    To receive a maximum benefit from external quality assessment, the laboratory has to fulfill certain requirements. There have to be standard operating procedures and checklists for the correct sample processing and analysis. It is equally important, that the staff has a basic understanding how this quality-tools work and that detected errors are used as a chance to improve the processes within the laboratory. The benefit of surveys for external quality assessment is not only limited to the analytical phase, but also to some aspects of the pre and post-analytical processes. Due to the many participants, the survey providers are able to collect a lot of practical knowledge. All participants can learn from this by reading the survey reports and commentaries. With this, and with special educational surveys, the providers of surveys are able to offer an opportunity of continuous education to the laboratories.

  18. The Effect of a Decision Aid on the Quality of Colorectal Cancer Screening Decisions

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2012-03-29

    low health literacy [67] or low numeracy [68], all of which compromise the delivery of effective health care. Health literacy as defined by the...with adverse health outcomes such as lower utilization of screening and preventive services [70, 71]. Both health literacy and numeracy are important...measure participants’ baseline health literacy or numeracy prior to viewing the decision aid. However, the fact that the difference in mean knowledge score

  19. Objective Assessment of Quality Measurement and Improvement

    PubMed Central

    Damle, Aneel; Alavi, Karim

    2014-01-01

    Accurate quality measurement that allows for and results in improvement is essential to colon and rectal surgery. Currently, no consensus exists as to which variables are most important in measuring outcomes. Debate continues concerning the “best” variables to measure from a structural, process, and outcomes standpoint. Although American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Program provides an opportunity for outcomes measurement in general and vascular surgery, there is no specific quality improvement tool available for colon and rectal surgery. However, there is growing literature testing the validity of candidate variables to be used in such a data collection system. This article evaluates the current objective assessment measurements used for quality improvement in colon and rectal surgery. PMID:27053926

  20. Management of safety and quality and the relationship with employee decisions in country grain elevators.

    PubMed

    Mosher, G A; Keren, N; Freeman, S A; Hurburgh, C R

    2012-07-01

    Human factors play an important role in the management of safety and quality in an agricultural work environment. Although employee actions and decisions have been identified as a key component of successful occupational safety programs and quality management programs, little attention has been given to the employees' role in these types of programs. This research explored two safety relationships that have theoretical connections but little previous research: the relationship between safety climate and quality climate, and the relationship of the safety and quality climates between the organizational level and the group level within a workplace. Survey data were collected at three commercial grain handling facilities from 177 employees. Employees also participated in safety and quality decision-making simulations. Significant positive predictions were noted for safety and quality climate. Decision-making predictions are also discussed. This research suggests that organizational safety is an important predictor of group safety. In addition, recognizing the larger role that supervisors play in group workplace behavior, more should be done to increase employee perceptions of group-level involvement in quality climate to promote more quality-oriented decision-making by employees.

  1. 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.

  2. Agricultural climate impacts assessment for economic modeling and decision support

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thomson, A. M.; Izaurralde, R. C.; Beach, R.; Zhang, X.; Zhao, K.; Monier, E.

    2013-12-01

    A range of approaches can be used in the application of climate change projections to agricultural impacts assessment. Climate projections can be used directly to drive crop models, which in turn can be used to provide inputs for agricultural economic or integrated assessment models. These model applications, and the transfer of information between models, must be guided by the state of the science. But the methodology must also account for the specific needs of stakeholders and the intended use of model results beyond pure scientific inquiry, including meeting the requirements of agencies responsible for designing and assessing policies, programs, and regulations. Here we present methodology and results of two climate impacts studies that applied climate model projections from CMIP3 and from the EPA Climate Impacts and Risk Analysis (CIRA) project in a crop model (EPIC - Environmental Policy Indicator Climate) in order to generate estimates of changes in crop productivity for use in an agricultural economic model for the United States (FASOM - Forest and Agricultural Sector Optimization Model). The FASOM model is a forward-looking dynamic model of the US forest and agricultural sector used to assess market responses to changing productivity of alternative land uses. The first study, focused on climate change impacts on the UDSA crop insurance program, was designed to use available daily climate projections from the CMIP3 archive. The decision to focus on daily data for this application limited the climate model and time period selection significantly; however for the intended purpose of assessing impacts on crop insurance payments, consideration of extreme event frequency was critical for assessing periodic crop failures. In a second, coordinated impacts study designed to assess the relative difference in climate impacts under a no-mitigation policy and different future climate mitigation scenarios, the stakeholder specifically requested an assessment of a

  3. Assessing environmental conditions of Antarctic footpaths to support management decisions.

    PubMed

    Tejedo, Pablo; Benayas, Javier; Cajiao, Daniela; Albertos, Belén; Lara, Francisco; Pertierra, Luis R; Andrés-Abellán, Manuela; Wic, Consuelo; Luciáñez, Maria José; Enríquez, Natalia; Justel, Ana; Reck, Günther K

    2016-07-15

    Thousands of tourists visit certain Antarctic sites each year, generating a wide variety of environmental impacts. Scientific knowledge of human activities and their impacts can help in the effective design of management measures and impact mitigation. We present a case study from Barrientos Island in which a management measure was originally put in place with the goal of minimizing environmental impacts but resulted in new undesired impacts. Two alternative footpaths used by tourist groups were compared. Both affected extensive moss carpets that cover the middle part of the island and that are very vulnerable to trampling. The first path has been used by tourists and scientists since over a decade and is a marked route that is clearly visible. The second one was created more recently. Several physical and biological indicators were measured in order to assess the environmental conditions for both paths. Some physical variables related to human impact were lower for the first path (e.g. soil penetration resistance and secondary treads), while other biochemical and microbiological variables were higher for the second path (e.g. β-glucosidase and phosphatase activities, soil respiration). Moss communities located along the new path were also more diverse and sensitive to trampling. Soil biota (Collembola) was also more abundant and richer. These data indicate that the decision to adopt the second path did not lead to the reduction of environmental impacts as this path runs over a more vulnerable area with more outstanding biological features (e.g. microbiota activity, flora and soil fauna diversity). In addition, the adoption of a new route effectively doubles the human footprint on the island. We propose using only the original path that is less vulnerable to the impacts of trampling. Finally from this process, we identify several key issues that may be taken into account when carrying out impact assessment and environmental management decision-making in the

  4. Socioeconomic assessment guidance report: Determining the effects of amenity characteristics on business location decisions

    SciTech Connect

    Allison, T.

    1993-02-01

    Evaluating perception-based impacts of hazardous waste facilities has become an increasingly important part of socioeconomic impact assessments in recent years. One area of discussion has been the potential effect of risk perceptions on business location decision making. This report evaluates the importance of environmental amenities (broadly defined to include natural, cultural, and recreational features; environmental quality; and other indexes of quality of life) with respect to decisions on locating both manufacturing and business service activities. It discusses the major theoretical and empirical issues that arise in attempting to determine the effects of environmental amenities on the location choices for businesses and business activities. This discussion is followed by a survey of major findings from the academic literature and a review of research by the state of Nevada. A number of recommendations for further research are also provided to help the US Department of Energy`s Office of Civilian Radioactive Waste Management better understand the importance of perception-based impacts in business location decision making and estimate the scale of socioeconomic impacts that would result from siting a high-level waste repository in Nevada.

  5. 42 CFR 460.140 - Additional quality assessment activities.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 4 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Additional quality assessment activities. 460.140... FOR THE ELDERLY (PACE) Quality Assessment and Performance Improvement § 460.140 Additional quality assessment activities. A PACE organization must meet external quality assessment and reporting requirements...

  6. 42 CFR 460.140 - Additional quality assessment activities.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 4 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Additional quality assessment activities. 460.140... FOR THE ELDERLY (PACE) Quality Assessment and Performance Improvement § 460.140 Additional quality assessment activities. A PACE organization must meet external quality assessment and reporting requirements...

  7. Parasitology: United Kingdom National Quality Assessment Scheme.

    PubMed Central

    Hawthorne, M.; Chiodini, P. L.; Snell, J. J.; Moody, A. H.; Ramsay, A.

    1992-01-01

    AIMS: To assess the results from parasitology laboratories taking part in a quality assessment scheme between 1986 and 1991; and to compare performance with repeat specimens. METHODS: Quality assessment of blood parasitology, including tissue parasites (n = 444; 358 UK, 86 overseas), and faecal parasitology, including extra-intestinal parasites (n = 205; 141 UK, 64 overseas), was performed. RESULTS: Overall, the standard of performance was poor. A questionnaire distributed to participants showed that a wide range of methods was used, some of which were considered inadequate to achieve reliable results. Teaching material was distributed to participants from time to time in an attempt to improve standards. CONCLUSIONS: Since the closure of the IMLS fellowship course in 1972, fewer opportunities for specialised training in parasitology are available: more training is needed. Poor performance in the detection of malarial parasites is mainly attributable to incorrect speciation, misidentification, and lack of equipment such as an eyepiece graticule. PMID:1452791

  8. Evaluating the quality and use of economic data in decisions about essential medicines

    PubMed Central

    Wirtz, Veronika J; Reich, Michael R

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Objective To evaluate the quality of economic data provided in applications to the World Health Organization (WHO) Model List of Essential Medicines and to evaluate the role of these data in decision-making by the expert committee that considers the applications. Methods We analysed applications submitted to the WHO Expert Committee on the Selection and Use of Essential Medicines between 2002 and 2013. The completeness of data on the price and cost–effectiveness of medicines was extracted from application documents and coded using a four-point scale. We recorded whether or not the expert committee discussed economic information and the outcomes of each application. Associations between the completeness of economic data and application outcomes were assessed using χ2 tests. Findings The expert committee received 134 applications. Only eight applications (6%) included complete price data and economic evaluation data. Many applicants omitted or misinterpreted the economic evaluation section of the application form. Despite the lack of economic data, all applications were reviewed by the committee. There was no significant association between the completeness of economic information and application outcomes. The expert committee tried to address information gaps in applications by further review and analysis of data related to the application. Conclusion The World Health Organization should revise the instructions to applicants on economic data requirements; develop new mechanisms to assist applicants in completing the application process; and define methods for the use of economic data in decision-making. PMID:26600611

  9. The reliability of the pass/fail decision for assessments comprised of multiple components

    PubMed Central

    Möltner, Andreas; Tımbıl, Sevgi; Jünger, Jana

    2015-01-01

    Objective: The decision having the most serious consequences for a student taking an assessment is the one to pass or fail that student. For this reason, the reliability of the pass/fail decision must be determined for high quality assessments, just as the measurement reliability of the point values. Assessments in a particular subject (graded course credit) are often composed of multiple components that must be passed independently of each other. When “conjunctively” combining separate pass/fail decisions, as with other complex decision rules for passing, adequate methods of analysis are necessary for estimating the accuracy and consistency of these classifications. To date, very few papers have addressed this issue; a generally applicable procedure was published by Douglas and Mislevy in 2010. Using the example of an assessment comprised of several parts that must be passed separately, this study analyzes the reliability underlying the decision to pass or fail students and discusses the impact of an improved method for identifying those who do not fulfill the minimum requirements. Method: The accuracy and consistency of the decision to pass or fail an examinee in the subject cluster Internal Medicine/General Medicine/Clinical Chemistry at the University of Heidelberg’s Faculty of Medicine was investigated. This cluster requires students to separately pass three components (two written exams and an OSCE), whereby students may reattempt to pass each component twice. Our analysis was carried out using the method described by Douglas and Mislevy. Results: Frequently, when complex logical connections exist between the individual pass/fail decisions in the case of low failure rates, only a very low reliability for the overall decision to grant graded course credit can be achieved, even if high reliabilities exist for the various components. For the example analyzed here, the classification accuracy and consistency when conjunctively combining the three individual

  10. 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

  11. Concordance between couples reporting their child's quality of life and their decision making in pediatric oncology palliative care.

    PubMed

    Tomlinson, Deborah; Hendershot, Eleanor; Bartels, Ute; Maloney, Anne-Marie; Armstrong, Christine; Wrathall, Glynis; Sung, Lillian

    2011-01-01

    In children 18 years and younger with cancer and no reasonable chance for cure the authors used a cross-sectional study design to (1) describe concordance between fathers' and mothers' evaluation of quality of life (QoL) and (2) determine parental correlation for how factors such as hope, anticipated QoL, and prolonged survival time influence decisions between supportive care alone versus aggressive chemotherapy. Both parents of 13 children performed PedsQL 4.0 Generic Core Scales, Acute Cancer Module, and Multidimensional Fatigue Scale. Concordance was assessed using intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC). Parents reported preferences of supportive care versus aggressive chemotherapy in a hypothetical scenario and rated factors that influenced decision making. Concordance was variable across QoL domains, better for physical health (ICC = 0.46), nausea (ICC = 0.61), general fatigue (ICC = 0.50), and sleep/rest fatigue (ICC = 0.76). Correlation was variable between parents on the influence of factors on their decision, with particularly poor correlation for importance of hope (r = -0.24). Variable concordance was reported between parental assessment of child QoL and factors influencing their decision making, suggesting parents may have different perspectives in decision making and that understanding both is important in clinical care.

  12. A decision support system for emission reduction assessment: the OPERA LIFE+ project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carnevale, Claudio; Bianchessi, Nicola; Finzi, Giovanna; Pederzoli, Anna; Pisoni, Enrico; Volta, Marialuisa; Deserti, Marco; De Munari, Eriberto; Stortini, Michele; Veronesi, Paolo; Gianfreda, Roberta; Maffeis, Giuseppe; Blond, Nadege; Mark-Hummel, Lioba; Clappier, Alain; Perron, Gilles

    2013-04-01

    In last decades, air pollution modelling assumed a key role for the definition and evaluation of suitable emission control strategies, supporting Regional Decision Makers in the design of long-term plans for air quality improvement. This is a complex task, due to the non-linear chemical reactions and physical processes that bring to secondary pollution formation and accumulation, involving precursor emissions, namely VOC, NOx, NH3, primary PM and SO2. The problem is even more complex when constraining policy to a fixed budget. This paper presents the first results of the OPERA (Operational Procedure for Emission Reduction Assessment) LIFE+ project (2010-2013, www.operatool.eu) aiming to design and to implement an enhanced approach to identify efficient regional policies (1) complying with National and EU air quality standards, (2) with local emission and meteorological features, financial, technological and social constraints and (3) considering potential synergies with actions to reduce GHG emissions. The proposed methodology is based on a multi-objective (air quality, internal and external costs) optimization problem. The decision variables are the technical and non-technical emission abatement measures. Artificial neural networks, identified processing long-term 3D deterministic multi-phase modelling system simulation outputs, describe the nonlinear relations between the control variables (precursor emissions reduction) and the air quality indexes (AQIs), defining the air quality objective. The internal costs are due to emission reduction measures implementation, while the external costs assess the damage due to population pollution exposure. The methodology has been implemented in a software tool (RIAT+) and tested on two regional applications, Emilia Romagna (IT) and Alsace (FR).

  13. Does empowering resident families or nursing home employees in decision making improve service quality?

    PubMed

    Hamann, Darla J

    2014-08-01

    This research examines how the empowerment of residents' family members and nursing home employees in managerial decision making is related to service quality. The study was conducted using data from 33 nursing homes in the United States. Surveys were administered to more than 1,000 employees on-site and mailed to the primary-contact family member of each resident. The resulting multilevel data were analyzed using hierarchical linear modeling. The empowerment of families in decision making was positively associated with their perceptions of service quality. The empowerment of nursing staff in decision making was more strongly related to service quality than the empowerment of nonnursing staff. Among nursing staff, the empowerment of nursing assistants improved service quality more than the empowerment of nurses. © The Author(s) 2013.

  14. 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.

  15. Staff Involvement in Leadership Decision Making in the UK Further Education Sector: Perceptions of Quality and Social Justice

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Maringe, Felix

    2012-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of the paper is to explore the quality of leadership decision making at various leadership levels in the further education (FE) sector. Using Hoffberg and Korver's model for integrated decision making, the paper aims to examine how staff in five UK FE colleges perceive the quality of their involvement in decision-making teams…

  16. Staff Involvement in Leadership Decision Making in the UK Further Education Sector: Perceptions of Quality and Social Justice

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Maringe, Felix

    2012-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of the paper is to explore the quality of leadership decision making at various leadership levels in the further education (FE) sector. Using Hoffberg and Korver's model for integrated decision making, the paper aims to examine how staff in five UK FE colleges perceive the quality of their involvement in decision-making teams…

  17. 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.

  18. Wildland fire decision support system air quality tools

    Treesearch

    Sim Larkin; Tim Brown; Pete Lahm; Tom Zimmerman

    2010-01-01

    Smoke and air quality information have an important role in wildland fire decisionmaking that is reinforced in the 2009 "Guidance for Implementation of Federal Wildland Fire Management Policy." A key intent of the guidance is to allow consideration and use of the full range of strategic and tactical options that are available in the response to every wildland...

  19. An application of contingent valuation and decision tree analysis to water quality improvements.

    PubMed

    Atkins, Jonathan P; Burdon, Daryl; Allen, James H

    2007-01-01

    This paper applies contingent valuation and decision tree analysis to investigate public preferences for water quality improvements, and in particular reduced eutrophication. Such preferences are important given that the development of EU water quality legislation is imposing significant costs on European economies. Results are reported of a survey undertaken of residents of Arhus County, Denmark for water quality improvements in the Randers Fjord. Results demonstrate strong public support for reduced eutrophication and identify key determinants of such support.

  20. Robust Decision Making to Support Improved Water Quality Planning: a Case Study in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fischbach, J. R.; Lempert, R. J.; Molina-Perez, E.

    2016-12-01

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA), together with state and local partners, develops watershed implementation plans designed to meet water quality standards. Uncertainty regarding the impacts of climate change, future land use, the effectiveness of water quality best management practices (BMPs), and other drivers may make it difficult for these implementation plans to meet water quality goals. In this effort, we explored how Robust Decision Making (RDM) methods could help USEPA and its partners develop implementation plans that are more robust to such uncertainty. The pilot study focuses on one part of the Chesapeake Bay watershed, the Patuxent River, which is 2,479 km2 in area, highly urbanized, and has a rapidly growing population. We simulated the contribution of stormwater contaminants from the Patuxent to the overall Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) for the Chesapeake Bay under multiple scenarios. Contaminants considered included nitrogen, phosphorus, and sediment loads. The assessment included a large set of scenario simulations using the USEPA Chesapeake Bay Program's Phase V watershed model. Uncertainties represented in the analysis include 12 land use scenarios with different population projections and development patterns, 18 climate change scenarios (based on 6 general circulation models and 3 emissions pathways), several future time periods, and alternative assumptions about BMP performance standards and efficiencies associated with different suites of stormwater BMPs. Finally, we developed cost estimates for each of the performance standards and compared cost to TMDL performance as a key tradeoff for future water quality management decisions. This pilot study is intended to support the Chesapeake Bay Program in providing climate-related decision support for water quality management, and more generally to help USEPA assess the effectiveness of RDM to support water quality management.

  1. Novel flood risk assessment framework for rapid decision making

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Valyrakis, Manousos; Koursari, Eftychia; Solley, Mark

    2016-04-01

    The impacts of catastrophic flooding, have significantly increased over the last few decades. This is due to primarily the increased urbanisation in ever-expanding mega-cities as well as due to the intensification both in magnitude and frequency of extreme hydrologic events. Herein a novel conceptual framework is presented that incorporates the use of real-time information to inform and update low dimensionality hydraulic models, to allow for rapid decision making towards preventing loss of life and safeguarding critical infrastructure. In particular, a case study from the recent UK floods in the area of Whitesands (Dumfries), is presented to demonstrate the utility of this approach. It is demonstrated that effectively combining a wealth of readily available qualitative information (such as crowdsourced visual documentation or using live data from sensing techniques), with existing quantitative data, can help appropriately update hydraulic models and reduce modelling uncertainties in future flood risk assessments. This approach is even more useful in cases where hydraulic models are limited, do not exist or were not needed before unpredicted dynamic modifications to the river system took place (for example in the case of reduced or eliminated hydraulic capacity due to blockages). The low computational cost and rapid assessment this framework offers, render it promising for innovating in flood management.

  2. An Evaluation of the Decision-Making Capacity Assessment Model

    PubMed Central

    Brémault-Phillips, Suzette C.; Parmar, Jasneet; Friesen, Steven; Rogers, Laura G.; Pike, Ashley; Sluggett, Bryan

    2016-01-01

    Background The Decision-Making Capacity Assessment (DMCA) Model includes a best-practice process and tools to assess DMCA, and implementation strategies at the organizational and assessor levels to support provision of DMCAs across the care continuum. A Developmental Evaluation of the DMCA Model was conducted. Methods A mixed methods approach was used. Survey (N = 126) and focus group (N = 49) data were collected from practitioners utilizing the Model. Results Strengths of the Model include its best-practice and implementation approach, applicability to independent practitioners and inter-professional teams, focus on training/mentoring to enhance knowledge/skills, and provision of tools/processes. Post-training, participants agreed that they followed the Model’s guiding principles (90%), used problem-solving (92%), understood discipline-specific roles (87%), were confident in their knowledge of DMCAs (75%) and pertinent legislation (72%), accessed consultative services (88%), and received management support (64%). Model implementation is impeded when role clarity, physician engagement, inter-professional buy-in, accountability, dedicated resources, information sharing systems, and remuneration are lacking. Dedicated resources, job descriptions inclusive of DMCAs, ongoing education/mentoring supports, access to consultative services, and appropriate remuneration would support implementation. Conclusions The DMCA Model offers practitioners, inter-professional teams, and organizations a best-practice and implementation approach to DMCAs. Addressing barriers and further contextualizing the Model would be warranted. PMID:27729947

  3. An Evaluation of the Decision-Making Capacity Assessment Model.

    PubMed

    Brémault-Phillips, Suzette C; Parmar, Jasneet; Friesen, Steven; Rogers, Laura G; Pike, Ashley; Sluggett, Bryan

    2016-09-01

    The Decision-Making Capacity Assessment (DMCA) Model includes a best-practice process and tools to assess DMCA, and implementation strategies at the organizational and assessor levels to support provision of DMCAs across the care continuum. A Developmental Evaluation of the DMCA Model was conducted. A mixed methods approach was used. Survey (N = 126) and focus group (N = 49) data were collected from practitioners utilizing the Model. Strengths of the Model include its best-practice and implementation approach, applicability to independent practitioners and inter-professional teams, focus on training/mentoring to enhance knowledge/skills, and provision of tools/processes. Post-training, participants agreed that they followed the Model's guiding principles (90%), used problem-solving (92%), understood discipline-specific roles (87%), were confident in their knowledge of DMCAs (75%) and pertinent legislation (72%), accessed consultative services (88%), and received management support (64%). Model implementation is impeded when role clarity, physician engagement, inter-professional buy-in, accountability, dedicated resources, information sharing systems, and remuneration are lacking. Dedicated resources, job descriptions inclusive of DMCAs, ongoing education/mentoring supports, access to consultative services, and appropriate remuneration would support implementation. The DMCA Model offers practitioners, inter-professional teams, and organizations a best-practice and implementation approach to DMCAs. Addressing barriers and further contextualizing the Model would be warranted.

  4. Geospatial decision support framework for critical infrastructure interdependency assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shih, Chung Yan

    Critical infrastructures, such as telecommunications, energy, banking and finance, transportation, water systems and emergency services are the foundations of modern society. There is a heavy dependence on critical infrastructures at multiple levels within the supply chain of any good or service. Any disruptions in the supply chain may cause profound cascading effect to other critical infrastructures. A 1997 report by the President's Commission on Critical Infrastructure Protection states that a serious interruption in freight rail service would bring the coal mining industry to a halt within approximately two weeks and the availability of electric power could be reduced in a matter of one to two months. Therefore, this research aimed at representing and assessing the interdependencies between coal supply, transportation and energy production. A proposed geospatial decision support framework was established and applied to analyze interdependency related disruption impact. By utilizing the data warehousing approach, geospatial and non-geospatial data were retrieved, integrated and analyzed based on the transportation model and geospatial disruption analysis developed in the research. The results showed that by utilizing this framework, disruption impacts can be estimated at various levels (e.g., power plant, county, state, etc.) for preventative or emergency response efforts. The information derived from the framework can be used for data mining analysis (e.g., assessing transportation mode usages; finding alternative coal suppliers, etc.).

  5. 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.

  6. A decision support system for water quality issues in the Manzanares River (Madrid, Spain).

    PubMed

    Paredes, Javier; Andreu, Joaquín; Solera, Abel

    2010-05-15

    The Manzanares River, located in Madrid (Spain), is the main water supplier of a highly populated region, and it also receives wastewater from the same area. The effluents of eight Waste Water Treatment Plants (WWTPs) downstream of the river, which represent 90% of the flow in the middle and lower parts of the river, are the primary sources of water pollution. Although the situation has improved slightly in the last two years, the water in the river is highly polluted, making it uninhabitable for aquatic life. Water quality modelling is typically used to assess the effect of treatment improvements in water bodies. In this work, the GESCAL module of the Aquatool Decision Support System Shell was used to simulate water quality in the Manzanares River. GESCAL is appropriate for modelling in an integrated way water quality for whole water resources systems, including reservoirs and rivers. A model was built that simulates conductivity, phosphorous, carbonaceous organic matter, dissolved oxygen, organic nitrogen, ammonia, and nitrates. The period from October 2006 to September 2008 was selected for calibration due to the many treatment modifications that occurred during this time. An earlier and longer period, from October 2000 to September 2006, was used for validation. In addition, a daily model was used to analyse the robustness of the GESCAL model. Once the GESCAL model was validated, different scenarios were considered and simulated. First, different combinations of nutrient elimination among the different WWTPs were simulated, leading to the conclusion that investments have to focus on three of the proposed WWTPs. Moreover, these treatments will not be sufficient to maintain fish habitat conditions at all times. Additional measures, such as the increment of the flow in the river or oxygen injection, were simulated. Incrementing the flow of the Manzanares River has been shown to be an efficient means of increasing water quality, but this implies an increment in the

  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. 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

  9. 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'…

  10. 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

  11. Spatial scale of local breeding habitat quality and adjustment of breeding decisions.

    PubMed

    Doligez, Blandine; Berthouly, Anne; Doligez, Damien; Tanner, Marion; Saladin, Verena; Bonfils, Danielle; Richner, Heinz

    2008-05-01

    Experimental studies provide evidence that, in spatially and temporally heterogeneous environments, individuals track variation in breeding habitat quality to adjust breeding decisions to local conditions. However, most experiments consider environmental variation at one spatial scale only, while the ability to detect the influence of a factor depends on the scale of analysis. We show that different breeding decisions by adults are based on information about habitat quality at different spatial scales. We manipulated (increased or decreased) local breeding habitat quality through food availability and parasite prevalence at a small (territory) and a large (patch) scale simultaneously in a wild population of Great Tits (Parus major). Females laid earlier in high-quality large-scale patches, but laying date did not depend on small-scale territory quality. Conversely, offspring sex ratio was higher (i.e., biased toward males) in high-quality, small-scale territories but did not depend on large-scale patch quality. Clutch size and territory occupancy probability did not depend on our experimental manipulation of habitat quality, but territories located at the edge of patches were more likely to be occupied than central territories. These results suggest that integrating different decisions taken by breeders according to environmental variation at different spatial scales is required to understand patterns of breeding strategy adjustment.

  12. The Neuropeptide Oxytocin Enhances Information Sharing and Group Decision Making Quality.

    PubMed

    De Wilde, Tim R W; Ten Velden, Femke S; De Dreu, Carsten K W

    2017-01-11

    Groups can make better decisions than individuals when members cooperatively exchange and integrate their uniquely held information and insights. However, under conformity pressures group members are biased towards exchanging commonly known information, and away from exchanging unique information, thus undermining group decision-making quality. At the neurobiological level, conformity associates with the neuropeptide oxytocin. A double-blind placebo controlled study found no evidence for oxytocin induced conformity. Compared to placebo groups, three-person groups whose members received intranasal oxytocin, focused more on unique information (i) and repeated this information more often (ii). These findings reveal oxytocin as a neurobiological driver of group decision-making processes.

  13. The Neuropeptide Oxytocin Enhances Information Sharing and Group Decision Making Quality

    PubMed Central

    De Wilde, Tim R. W.; Ten Velden, Femke S.; De Dreu, Carsten K. W.

    2017-01-01

    Groups can make better decisions than individuals when members cooperatively exchange and integrate their uniquely held information and insights. However, under conformity pressures group members are biased towards exchanging commonly known information, and away from exchanging unique information, thus undermining group decision-making quality. At the neurobiological level, conformity associates with the neuropeptide oxytocin. A double-blind placebo controlled study found no evidence for oxytocin induced conformity. Compared to placebo groups, three-person groups whose members received intranasal oxytocin, focused more on unique information (i) and repeated this information more often (ii). These findings reveal oxytocin as a neurobiological driver of group decision-making processes. PMID:28074896

  14. Clinical inferences and decisions--III. Utility assessment and the Bayesian decision model.

    PubMed

    Aspinall, P A; Hill, A R

    1984-01-01

    It is accepted that errors of misclassifications, however small, can occur in clinical decisions but it cannot be assumed that the importance associated with false positive errors is the same as that for false negatives. The relative importance of these two types of error is frequently implied by a decision maker in the different weighting factors or utilities he assigns to the alternative consequences of his decisions. Formal procedures are available by which it is possible to make explicit in numerical form the value or worth of the outcome of a decision process. The two principal methods are described for generating utilities as associated with clinical decisions. The concept and application of utility is then expanded from a unidimensional to a multidimensional problem where, for example, one variable may be state of health and another monetary assets. When combined with the principles of subjective probability and test criterion selection outlined in Parts I and II of this series, the consequent use of utilities completes the framework upon which the general Bayesian model of clinical decision making is based. The five main stages in this general decision making model are described and applications of the model are illustrated with clinical examples from the field of ophthalmology. These include examples for unidimensional and multidimensional problems which are worked through in detail to illustrate both the principles and methodology involved in a rationalized normative model of clinical decision making behaviour.

  15. Interactive decision support system to predict print quality.

    PubMed

    Leman, Sugani; Lehto, Mark R

    2003-01-15

    Customers using printers occasionally experience problems such as fuzzy images, bands, or streaks. The customer may call or otherwise contact the manufacturer, who attempts to diagnose the problem based on the customer's description of the problem. This study evaluated Bayesian inference as a tool for identifying or diagnosing 16 different types of print defects from such descriptions. The Bayesian model was trained using 1701 narrative descriptions of print defects obtained from 60 subjects with varying technical backgrounds. The Bayesian model was then implemented as an interactive decision support system, which was used by eight 'agents' to diagnose print defects reported by 16 'customers' in a simulated call centre. The 'agents' and 'customers' in the simulated call centre were all students at Purdue University. Each customer made eight telephone calls, resulting in a total of 128 telephone calls in which the customer reported defects to the agents. The results showed that the Bayesian model closely fitted the data in the training set of narratives. Overall, the model correctly predicted the actual defect category with its top prediction 70% of the time. The actual defect was in the top five predictions 94% of the time. The model in the simulated call centre performed nearly as well for the test subjects. The top prediction was correct 50% of the time, and the defect was one of the top five predictions 80% of the time. Agent accuracy in diagnosing the problem improved when using the tool. These results demonstrated that the Bayesian system learned enough from the existing narratives to accurately classify print defect categories.

  16. Assessing facial attractiveness: individual decisions and evolutionary constraints

    PubMed Central

    Kocsor, Ferenc; Feldmann, Adam; Bereczkei, Tamas; Kállai, János

    2013-01-01

    Background Several studies showed that facial attractiveness, as a highly salient social cue, influences behavioral responses. It has also been found that attractive faces evoke distinctive neural activation compared to unattractive or neutral faces. Objectives Our aim was to design a face recognition task where individual preferences for facial cues are controlled for, and to create conditions that are more similar to natural circumstances in terms of decision making. Design In an event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) experiment, subjects were shown attractive and unattractive faces, categorized on the basis of their own individual ratings. Results Statistical analysis of all subjects showed elevated brain activation for attractive opposite-sex faces in contrast to less attractive ones in regions that previously have been reported to show enhanced activation with increasing attractiveness level (e.g. the medial and superior occipital gyri, fusiform gyrus, precentral gyrus, and anterior cingular cortex). Besides these, females showed additional brain activation in areas thought to be involved in basic emotions and desires (insula), detection of facial emotions (superior temporal gyrus), and memory retrieval (hippocampus). Conclusions From these data, we speculate that because of the risks involving mate choice faced by women during evolutionary times, selection might have preferred the development of an elaborated neural system in females to assess the attractiveness and social value of male faces. PMID:24693356

  17. Assessing and Valuing Historical Geospatial Data for Decisions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sylak-Glassman, E.; Gallo, J.

    2016-12-01

    We will present a method for assessing the use and valuation of historical geospatial data and information products derived from Earth observations (EO). Historical data is widely used in the establishment of baseline reference cases, time-series analysis, and Earth system modeling. Historical geospatial data is used in diverse application areas, such as risk assessment in the insurance and reinsurance industry, disaster preparedness and response planning, historical demography, land-use change analysis, and paleoclimate research, among others. Establishing the current value of previously collected data, often from EO systems that are no longer operating, is difficult since the costs associated with their preservation, maintenance, and dissemination are current, while the costs associated with their original collection are sunk. Understanding their current use and value can aid in funding decisions about the data management infrastructure and workforce allocation required to maintain their availability. Using a value-tree framework to trace the application of data from EO systems, sensors, networks, and surveys, to weighted key Federal objectives, we are able to estimate relative contribution of individual EO systems, sensors, networks, and surveys to meeting those objectives. The analysis relies on a modified Delphi method to elicit relative levels of reliance on individual EO data inputs, including historical data, from subject matter experts. This results in the identification of a representative portfolio of all EO data used to meet key Federal objectives. Because historical data is collected in conjunction with all other EO data within a weighted framework, its contribution to meeting key Federal objectives can be specifically identified and evaluated in relationship to other EO data. The results of this method could be applied better understanding and projecting the long-term value of data from current and future EO systems.

  18. The Lichtenberg Financial Decision Screening Scale (LFDSS): A new tool for assessing financial decision making and preventing financial exploitation

    PubMed Central

    Lichtenberg, P.A.; Howard, H; Simaskp, P.; Mall, S.; Speir, J.; Farrell, C.; Tatro, R; Rahman-Filipiak, A.; Ficker, L.J.

    2016-01-01

    One of the challenges in preventing the financial exploitation of older adults is that neither criminal justice nor noncriminal justice professionals are equipped to detect capacity deficits. Because decision-making capacity is a cornerstone assessment in cases of financial exploitation, effective instruments for measuring this capacity are essential. We introduce a new screening scale for financial decision making that can be administered to older adults. To explore the scale’s implementation and assess construct validity, we conducted a pilot study of 29 older adults seen by APS workers and 79 seen by other professionals. Case examples are included. PMID:27010780

  19. The Lichtenberg Financial Decision Screening Scale (LFDSS): A new tool for assessing financial decision making and preventing financial exploitation.

    PubMed

    Lichtenberg, Peter A; Ficker, Lisa; Rahman-Filipiak, Analise; Tatro, Ron; Farrell, Cynthia; Speir, James J; Mall, Sanford J; Simasko, Patrick; Collens, Howard H; Jackman, John Daniel

    2016-01-01

    One of the challenges in preventing the financial exploitation of older adults is that neither criminal justice nor noncriminal justice professionals are equipped to detect capacity deficits. Because decision-making capacity is a cornerstone assessment in cases of financial exploitation, effective instruments for measuring this capacity are essential. We introduce a new screening scale for financial decision making that can be administered to older adults. To explore the scale's implementation and assess construct validity, we conducted a pilot study of 29 older adults seen by APS (Adult Protective Services) workers and 79 seen by other professionals. Case examples are included.

  20. 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.

  1. Application of water quality guidelines and water quantity calculations to decisions for beneficial use of treated water

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pham, Minh Phung T.; Castle, James W.; Rodgers, John H.

    2011-12-01

    Water reuse guidelines were compiled as a decision-analysis screening tool for application to potential water reuse for irrigation, livestock watering, aquaculture, and drinking. Data compiled from the literature for water reuses yielded guideline values for over 50 water quality parameters, including concentrations of inorganic and organic constituents as well as general water chemistry parameters. These water quality guidelines can be used to identify constituents of concern in water, to determine the levels to which the constituents must be treated for water reuse applications, and assess the suitability of treated water for reuse. An example is provided to illustrate the application of water quality guidelines for decision analysis. Water quantity analysis was also investigated, and water volumes required for producing 16 different crops in 15 countries were estimated as an example of applying water quantity in the decision-making process regarding the potential of water reuse. For each of the countries investigated, the crop that produces the greatest yield in terms of weight per water volume is tomatoes in Australia, Brazil, Italy, Japan, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, USA; sugarcane in Chad, India, Indonesia, Sudan; watermelons in China; lettuce in Egypt, Mexico; and onions (dry) in Russia.

  2. Using Data Mining for Wine Quality Assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cortez, Paulo; Teixeira, Juliana; Cerdeira, António; Almeida, Fernando; Matos, Telmo; Reis, José

    Certification and quality assessment are crucial issues within the wine industry. Currently, wine quality is mostly assessed by physicochemical (e.g alcohol levels) and sensory (e.g. human expert evaluation) tests. In this paper, we propose a data mining approach to predict wine preferences that is based on easily available analytical tests at the certification step. A large dataset is considered with white vinho verde samples from the Minho region of Portugal. Wine quality is modeled under a regression approach, which preserves the order of the grades. Explanatory knowledge is given in terms of a sensitivity analysis, which measures the response changes when a given input variable is varied through its domain. Three regression techniques were applied, under a computationally efficient procedure that performs simultaneous variable and model selection and that is guided by the sensitivity analysis. The support vector machine achieved promising results, outperforming the multiple regression and neural network methods. Such model is useful for understanding how physicochemical tests affect the sensory preferences. Moreover, it can support the wine expert evaluations and ultimately improve the production.

  3. [Epidemiological standards for assessing quality: a proposal

    PubMed

    Rattner

    1996-01-01

    This paper proposes a strategy for defining indicators to assess the quality of the process of health care, based on the identification of the objectives of the care being delivered and on the verification of whether the technical guidelines for the procedures are being enforced. The article goes on to apply the proposed methodology to the process of health care during childbirth, based on a perspective of comprehensive care and adopting both an individual and collective risk approach. It uses a data bank of 4,558 Simplified Perinatal Clinical Histories (CLAP/PAHO/WHO) from 12 hospitals.The indicators selected were: V.D.R.L., Rh blood typing, antitetanus vaccination, rate of cesarean sections, reception of the baby by a pediatrician at birth, Apgar score, evaluation of the gestational age by physical exam, rooming-in, exclusive breastfeeding upon discharge, and referral for a puerperal consultation. Methods for classification of hospitals were the sum of their scores for each indicator, gold standard, and ranking. This methodology warranted identification of one hospital with excellent quality of care, five with good care, two with fair care, and four whose performances were completely unsatisfactory. Finally, some remarks on the assessment of quality of health care are made and future developments are proposed.

  4. 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.

  5. Using decision analysis to assess comparative clinical efficacy of surgical treatment of unstable ankle fractures.

    PubMed

    Michelson, James D

    2013-11-01

    The development of a robust treatment algorithm for ankle fractures based on well-established stability criteria has been shown to be prognostic with respect to treatment and outcomes. In parallel with the development of improved understanding of the biomechanical rationale of ankle fracture treatment has been an increased emphasis on assessing the effectiveness of medical and surgical interventions. The purpose of this study was to investigate the use of using decision analysis in the assessment of the cost effectiveness of operative treatment of ankle fractures based on the existing clinical data in the literature. Using the data obtained from a previous structured review of the ankle fracture literature, decision analysis trees were constructed using standard software. The decision nodes for the trees were based on ankle fracture stability criteria previously published. The outcomes were assessed by calculated Quality-Adjusted Life Years (QALYs) assigned to achieving normal ankle function, developing posttraumatic arthritis, or sustaining a postoperative infection. Sensitivity analysis was undertaken by varying the patient's age, incidence of arthritis, and incidence or infection. Decision analysis trees captured the essential aspects of clinical decision making in ankle fracture treatment in a clinically useful manner. In general, stable fractures yielded better outcomes with nonoperative treatment, whereas unstable fractures had better outcomes with surgery. These were consistent results over a wide range of postoperative infection rates. Varying the age of the patient did not qualitatively change the results. Between the ages of 30 and 80 years, surgery yielded higher expected QALYs than nonoperative care for unstable fractures, and generated lower QALYs than nonoperative care for stable fractures. Using local cost estimates for operative and nonoperative treatment, the incremental cost of surgery for unstable fractures was less than $40,000 per QALY (the

  6. The role of health technology assessment in coverage decisions on newborn screening.

    PubMed

    Fischer, Katharina E; Grosse, Scott D; Rogowski, Wolf H

    2011-10-01

    The role and impact of health technology assessment (HTA) in health policy has been widely discussed. Researchers have started to analyze how decisions on coverage of new technologies are made. Although the involvement of HTA may be an indicator of a well established decision process, this hypothesis requires validation. Also, it is not known whether HTA involvement is associated with other characteristics of decision making like participation or transparency. The primary objective of this study was to develop and test statements on the association between the publication of an HTA and coverage decision making for newborn screening tests in European Union countries. Five statements were defined on the relative role of HTA during the steps of decision processes: trigger, participation, publication, assessment, and appraisal. For this purpose, data on twenty-two decision processes in the area of newborn screening across Europe were analyzed, defined as a coverage decision for a given disorder in a specific country. Decision processes were compared by whether the decision was accompanied by the publication of an HTA report. To test differences, nonparametric statistical tests were used. The decision steps of trigger, participation and publication differed between the HTA and the non-HTA groups. No clear association between HTA and assessment methods in coverage decision making was identified. It appeared that there is an association between HTA and coverage decision processes that are more explicit, inclusive, and transparent. It is unclear whether HTA is associated with formal evidence reviews and economic evaluations.

  7. Assessing Decision Making in Young Adult Romantic Relationships

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vennum, Amber; Fincham, Frank D.

    2011-01-01

    Romantic relationships among young adults are rich with ambiguity and without a clear, universal progression emphasizing the need for active decision making. Lack of active decision making in romantic relationships can lead to increases in constraints (e.g. pregnancy, shared living space or finances) that promote the continuation of relationships…

  8. Teacher Decisions about Planning and Assessment in Primary Mathematics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sullivan, Peter; Clarke, David J.; Clarke, Doug M.

    2012-01-01

    We are interested in exploring the processes teachers use when planning. We sought responses from teachers on aspects of their planning from a survey of various aspects of their decisions. We found that, while there is diversity in processes teachers use for planning, a consistent theme was that teachers make deliberative decisions at all stages…

  9. Teacher Decisions about Planning and Assessment in Primary Mathematics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sullivan, Peter; Clarke, David J.; Clarke, Doug M.

    2012-01-01

    We are interested in exploring the processes teachers use when planning. We sought responses from teachers on aspects of their planning from a survey of various aspects of their decisions. We found that, while there is diversity in processes teachers use for planning, a consistent theme was that teachers make deliberative decisions at all stages…

  10. Quality effort decision in service supply chain with quality preference based on quantum game

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Cuihua; Xing, Peng; Wang, Jianwei

    2015-04-01

    Service quality preference behaviors of both members are considered in service supply chain (SSC) including a service integrator and a service provider with stochastic demand. Through analysis of service quality cost and revenue, the utility functions are established on service quality effort degree and service quality preference level in integrated and decentralized SSC. Nash equilibrium and quantum game are used to optimize the models. By comparing the different solutions, the optimal strategies are obtained in SSC with quality preference. Then some numerical examples are studied and the changing trend of service quality effort is further analyzed by the influence of the entanglement operator and quality preferences.

  11. Topological image texture analysis for quality assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Asaad, Aras T.; Rashid, Rasber Dh.; Jassim, Sabah A.

    2017-05-01

    Image quality is a major factor influencing pattern recognition accuracy and help detect image tampering for forensics. We are concerned with investigating topological image texture analysis techniques to assess different type of degradation. We use Local Binary Pattern (LBP) as a texture feature descriptor. For any image construct simplicial complexes for selected groups of uniform LBP bins and calculate persistent homology invariants (e.g. number of connected components). We investigated image quality discriminating characteristics of these simplicial complexes by computing these models for a large dataset of face images that are affected by the presence of shadows as a result of variation in illumination conditions. Our tests demonstrate that for specific uniform LBP patterns, the number of connected component not only distinguish between different levels of shadow effects but also help detect the infected regions as well.

  12. Image quality assessment using contourlet transform

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Mingna; Yang, Xin

    2009-10-01

    We present a novel objective full-reference image quality assessment metric based on multiscale geometric analysis. The multichannel behavior of the human vision system is emulated by contourlet transform, a perceptual subband decomposition. Not only the contrast-masking effect but also the entropy-masking effect is considered to deal with the visual masking issue. In the error pooling stage, the frequency sensitivity of the HVS is investigated. Nonlinear and linear fusion schemes of subband distortion are compared. Extensive validation experiments are performed on two professional image databases, the LIVE database supplied by the University of Texas and the A57 database supplied by Cornell University. Compared with several state-of-the-art image quality metrics, the proposed metric demonstrates improvement on prediction accuracy and robustness.

  13. Registration Quality Assessment of Acupuncture Clinical Trials

    PubMed Central

    Gu, Jing; Zhao, Ye; Wang, Xiaogang; Jiang, Jianjun; Tian, Jinhui; Yang, Kehu

    2013-01-01

    Background Registration can help with transparency of acupuncture clinical trials (ACTs) by making protocol information and results available to the public. Recently, the number of registered ACTs has increased greatly, but only a few researchers have focused on the quality of ACTs registration. This review provides the first assessment of the registration quality of ACTs and the baseline information for future development. Methods All records of ACTs registered in the World Health Organization (WHO) International Clinical Trials Registry Platform (ICTRP) were collected. Data was extracted and input to Excel spreadsheets. The current 20 items of the WHO Trial Registration Data Set (TRDS) and the special prepared items for acupuncture intervention details were used to assess the registration quality of ACTs. Results A total of 740 records, found in 11 registries, were examined. The number of registered ACTs increased rapidly and involved a number of different diseases. The completeness of 20 items was not too poor due to 16 of them had a higher reported percentage (>85%). The completeness of the 20 items was different among registries. For example, the average registration percentage of 20 items in Clinicaltrials.gov, ChiCTR, ISRCTN and ANZCTR were 89.6%, 92.2%, 82.4% and 91.6% respectively. Detailed information regarding acupuncture intervention was seriously insufficient. Among the 740 registration records, 89.2% lacked information on the style of acupuncture, 80.8% did not contain details regarding the needles used, 53.5% lacked information on the treatment regimen and 76.2% did not give details of other interventions administered with acupuncture. Conclusions The overall registration quality of ACTs is not high enough due to the serious lack of information on the specifics of acupuncture intervention. It is vital that a number of special items be set regarding acupuncture in order to develop a suitable system for the registration of ACTs. PMID:23555686

  14. Practical Functional Approach to Quality Assessment in Subtitling: "Pocahontas II--Case Study"

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hussain, Alaa Eddin; Khuddro, Ahmad

    2016-01-01

    The present research work deals with subtitling errors encountered by simulators and proof-readers. The resultant work is of significant contribution to problem decision makings in the field of quality assessment of audiovisual translation (AVT). The outcome of this paper is the result of accumulated working experience in this domain. The relevant…

  15. Identification and assessment of potential water quality impact factors for drinking-water reservoirs.

    PubMed

    Gu, Qing; Deng, Jinsong; Wang, Ke; Lin, Yi; Li, Jun; Gan, Muye; Ma, Ligang; Hong, Yang

    2014-06-10

    Various reservoirs have been serving as the most important drinking water sources in Zhejiang Province, China, due to the uneven distribution of precipitation and severe river pollution. Unfortunately, rapid urbanization and industrialization have been continuously challenging the water quality of the drinking-water reservoirs. The identification and assessment of potential impacts is indispensable in water resource management and protection. This study investigates the drinking water reservoirs in Zhejiang Province to better understand the potential impact on water quality. Altogether seventy-three typical drinking reservoirs in Zhejiang Province encompassing various water storage levels were selected and evaluated. Using fifty-two reservoirs as training samples, the classification and regression tree (CART) method and sixteen comprehensive variables, including six sub-sets (land use, population, socio-economy, geographical features, inherent characteristics, and climate), were adopted to establish a decision-making model for identifying and assessing their potential impacts on drinking-water quality. The water quality class of the remaining twenty-one reservoirs was then predicted and tested based on the decision-making model, resulting in a water quality class attribution accuracy of 81.0%. Based on the decision rules and quantitative importance of the independent variables, industrial emissions was identified as the most important factor influencing the water quality of reservoirs; land use and human habitation also had a substantial impact on water quality. The results of this study provide insights into the factors impacting the water quality of reservoirs as well as basic information for protecting reservoir water resources.

  16. Decision qualities of Bayes factor and p value-based hypothesis testing.

    PubMed

    Jeon, Minjeong; De Boeck, Paul

    2017-06-01

    The purpose of this article is to investigate the decision qualities of the Bayes factor (BF) method compared with the p value-based null hypothesis significance testing (NHST). The performance of the 2 methods is assessed in terms of the false- and true-positive rates, as well as the false-discovery rates and the posterior probabilities of the null hypothesis for 2 different models: an independent-samples t test and an analysis of variance (ANOVA) model with 2 random factors. Our simulation study results showed the following: (a) The common BF > 3 criterion is more conservative than the NHST α = .05 criterion, and it corresponds better with the α = .01 criterion. (b) An increasing sample size has a different effect on the false-positive rate and the false-discovery rate, depending on whether the BF or NHST approach is used. (c) When effect sizes are randomly sampled from the prior, power curves tend to be flat compared with when effect sizes are prespecified. (d) The larger the scale factor (or the wider the prior), the more conservative the inferential decision is. (e) The false-positive and true-positive rates of the BF method are very sensitive to the scale factor when the effect size is small. (f) While the posterior probabilities of the null hypothesis ideally follow from the BF value, they can be surprisingly high using NHST. In general, these findings were consistent independent of which of the 2 different models was used. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2017 APA, all rights reserved).

  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. 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,…

  19. 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,…

  20. A Tutorial on Probablilistic Risk Assessement and its Role in Risk-Informed Decision Making

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dezfuli, Homayoon

    2010-01-01

    This slide presentation reviews risk assessment and its role in risk-informed decision making. It includes information on probabilistic risk assessment, typical risk management process, origins of risk matrix, performance measures, performance objectives and Bayes theorem.

  1. Naturalistic Decision-Making Task Processes in Multiprofessional Assessment of Disability.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bartolo, Paul A.; Dockrell, Julie; Lunt, Ingrid

    2001-01-01

    Studies the group decision-making process of the evaluation of preschool children with complex disabilities. Sequential application of processes was found to be influenced by the occurrence of a series of three cycles of decision making within each assessment and the decomposition of the assessment task into distinct subproblems. (Contains 67…

  2. 76 FR 12356 - A Method To Assess Climate-Relevant Decisions: Application in the Chesapeake Bay

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-03-07

    ... From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY A Method To Assess Climate-Relevant Decisions: Application in the Chesapeake Bay AGENCY... external peer review meeting of the draft document titled, ``A Method to Assess Climate-Relevant Decisions...

  3. Methods to assess landscape-scale risk of bark beetle infestation to support forest management decisions

    Treesearch

    T. L. Shore; A. Fall; W. G. Riel; J. Hughes; M. Eng

    2010-01-01

    The objective of our paper is to provide practitioners with suggestions on how to select appropriate methods for risk assessment of bark beetle infestations at the landscape scale in order to support their particular management decisions and to motivate researchers to refine novel risk assessment methods. Methods developed to assist and inform management decisions for...

  4. Design Decisions in Developing Learning Trajectories-Based Assessments in Mathematics: A Case Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Penuel, William R.; Confrey, Jere; Maloney, Alan; Rupp, André A.

    2014-01-01

    This article analyzes the design decisions of a team developing diagnostic assessments for a learning trajectory focused on rational number reasoning. The analysis focuses on the design rationale for key decisions about how to develop the cognitive assessments and related validity arguments within a fluid state and national policy context. The…

  5. Naturalistic Decision-Making Task Processes in Multiprofessional Assessment of Disability.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bartolo, Paul A.; Dockrell, Julie; Lunt, Ingrid

    2001-01-01

    Studies the group decision-making process of the evaluation of preschool children with complex disabilities. Sequential application of processes was found to be influenced by the occurrence of a series of three cycles of decision making within each assessment and the decomposition of the assessment task into distinct subproblems. (Contains 67…

  6. Decision-making quality of younger and older adults in familiar and unfamiliar domains.

    PubMed

    Wayde, Ernest N; Black, Sheila R; Gilpin, Ansley

    2017-03-01

    Age-related differences in purchasing decisions were examined as a function of age and familiarity. On each trial, participants received purchasing options which varied in quality but ultimately cost the same amount of money. On half the trials, participants made decisions about items familiar to younger adults and on the other half of the trials, participants made decisions about products familiar to older adults. The participants' task was to choose the option that provided the best value for the money. We were particularly interested in participants' performance when inferencing was required to select the optimal option from the two choices. Younger adults outperformed older adults in unfamiliar but not familiar domains. It appeared that both younger and older adults used inferencing and elaborative processing to make the best decision in familiar domains but that only younger adults used inferencing and elaborative processing in unfamiliar domains.

  7. Decision-Oriented Health Technology Assessment: One Step Forward in Supporting the Decision-Making Process in Hospitals.

    PubMed

    Ritrovato, Matteo; Faggiano, Francesco C; Tedesco, Giorgia; Derrico, Pietro

    2015-06-01

    This article outlines the Decision-Oriented Health Technology Assessment: a new implementation of the European network for Health Technology Assessment Core Model, integrating the multicriteria decision-making analysis by using the analytic hierarchy process to introduce a standardized methodological approach as a valued and shared tool to support health care decision making within a hospital. Following the Core Model as guidance (European network for Health Technology Assessment. HTA core model for medical and surgical interventions. Available from: http://www.eunethta.eu/outputs/hta-core-model-medical-and-surgical-interventions-10r. [Accessed May 27, 2014]), it is possible to apply the analytic hierarchy process to break down a problem into its constituent parts and identify priorities (i.e., assigning a weight to each part) in a hierarchical structure. Thus, it quantitatively compares the importance of multiple criteria in assessing health technologies and how the alternative technologies perform in satisfying these criteria. The verbal ratings are translated into a quantitative form by using the Saaty scale (Saaty TL. Decision making with the analytic hierarchy process. Int J Serv Sci 2008;1:83-98). An eigenvectors analysis is used for deriving the weights' systems (i.e., local and global weights' system) that reflect the importance assigned to the criteria and the priorities related to the performance of the alternative technologies. Compared with the Core Model, this methodological approach supplies a more timely as well as contextualized evidence for a specific technology, making it possible to obtain data that are more relevant and easier to interpret, and therefore more useful for decision makers to make investment choices with greater awareness. We reached the conclusion that although there may be scope for improvement, this implementation is a step forward toward the goal of building a "solid bridge" between the scientific evidence and the final decision

  8. Peer Review and Quality Assessment in Complete Denture Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Novetsky, Marvin; Razzoog, Michael E.

    1981-01-01

    A program in peer review and quality assessment at the University of Michigan denture department is described. The program exposes students to peer review in order to assess the quality of their treatment. (Author/MLW)

  9. A Preliminary View of the Quality of Decision-Making in the Benchmark Year of 1984. AIR 1985 Annual Forum Paper.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Spiro, Louis M.; Campbell, Jill F.

    Perceptions of college institutional research directors concerning the quality of executive decision making at their institutions were studied. Perceptions were assessed using a theoretical model of Groupthink developed by Janis, who postulates that a high amount of environmental stress should lead to a greater degree of…

  10. Test Length and Decision Quality in Personnel Selection: When Is Short Too Short?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kruyen, Peter M.; Emons, Wilco H. M.; Sijtsma, Klaas

    2012-01-01

    Personnel selection shows an enduring need for short stand-alone tests consisting of, say, 5 to 15 items. Despite their efficiency, short tests are more vulnerable to measurement error than longer test versions. Consequently, the question arises to what extent reducing test length deteriorates decision quality due to increased impact of…

  11. Decision Making, Structure and Institutional Notions of Quality: A Case Study.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wolverton, Mimi

    Few studies have focused on the effects of systemic change and decentralized decision making on organizational structure and on an institution's notion of quality education. This study examined such interconnections at a community college given the pseudonym America Community College (ACC). ACC is a multi-campus metropolitan area college in a area…

  12. Parental Decision Making about Technology and Quality in Child Care Programs

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rose, Katherine K.; Vittrup, Brigitte; Leveridge, Tinney

    2013-01-01

    Background: This study investigated parental decision making about non-parental child care programs based on the technological and quality components of the program, both child-focused and parent-focused. Child-focused variables related to children's access to technology such as computers, educational television programming, and the internet.…

  13. Test Length and Decision Quality in Personnel Selection: When Is Short Too Short?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kruyen, Peter M.; Emons, Wilco H. M.; Sijtsma, Klaas

    2012-01-01

    Personnel selection shows an enduring need for short stand-alone tests consisting of, say, 5 to 15 items. Despite their efficiency, short tests are more vulnerable to measurement error than longer test versions. Consequently, the question arises to what extent reducing test length deteriorates decision quality due to increased impact of…

  14. Involving patients in care decisions improves satisfaction: an outcomes-based quality improvement project.

    PubMed

    Leff, Ellen W

    2004-05-01

    A home care agency used quality improvement processes to improve patient satisfaction survey ratings. The focus was on involving patients in decisions about their care. A multidisciplinary team developed creative strategies to increase staff awareness and enhance customer service skills, which had dramatic results.

  15. Parental Decision Making about Technology and Quality in Child Care Programs

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rose, Katherine K.; Vittrup, Brigitte; Leveridge, Tinney

    2013-01-01

    Background: This study investigated parental decision making about non-parental child care programs based on the technological and quality components of the program, both child-focused and parent-focused. Child-focused variables related to children's access to technology such as computers, educational television programming, and the internet.…

  16. 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

  17. Assessing quality on the Sigma scale from proficiency testing and external quality assessment surveys.

    PubMed

    Westgard, James O; Westgard, Sten A

    2015-09-01

    There is a need to assess the quality being achieved for laboratory examinations that are being utilized to support evidence-based clinical guidelines. Application of Six Sigma concepts and metrics can provide an objective assessment of the current analytical quality of different examination procedures. A "Sigma Proficiency Assessment Chart" can be constructed for data obtained from proficiency testing and external quality assessment surveys to evaluate the observed imprecision and bias of method subgroups and determine quality on the Sigma scale. Data for hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) from a 2014 survey by the College of American Pathologists (CAP) demonstrates that approximately two-thirds of the examination subgroups provide only two-Sigma quality when evaluated against the CAP requirement of an allowable total error of 6.0%. The weighted averages were 1.46 Sigma for a survey sample with an assigned value of 6.49% Hb (average bias 2.31%, CV 2.87%), 1.45 Sigma at 6.97% Hb (average bias 2.29%, CV 2.81%), and 1.75 at 9.65% Hb (average bias 1.55%, CV 2.71%). Maximum biases for examination subgroups were 5.7%, 5.8%, and 4.1%, respectively. Assessment of quality on the Sigma scale provides evidence of the analytical performance that is being achieved relative to requirements for intended use and should be useful for identifying and prioritizing improvements that are needed in the analytical quality of laboratory examinations. In spite of global and national standardization programs, bias is still a critical limitation of current HbA1c examination procedures.

  18. A CNN based neurobiology inspired approach for retinal image quality assessment.

    PubMed

    Mahapatra, Dwarikanath; Roy, Pallab K; Sedai, Suman; Garnavi, Rahil

    2016-08-01

    Retinal image quality assessment (IQA) algorithms use different hand crafted features for training classifiers without considering the working of the human visual system (HVS) which plays an important role in IQA. We propose a convolutional neural network (CNN) based approach that determines image quality using the underlying principles behind the working of the HVS. CNNs provide a principled approach to feature learning and hence higher accuracy in decision making. Experimental results demonstrate the superior performance of our proposed algorithm over competing methods.

  19. Models, Measurements, and Local Decisions: Assessing and Addressing Impacts from Port Expansion and Traffic Activity

    EPA Science Inventory

    This presentation includes a combination of modeling and measurement results to characterize near-source air quality in Newark, New Jersey with consideration of how this information could be used to inform decision making to reduce risk of health impacts. Decisions could include ...

  20. Models, Measurements, and Local Decisions: Assessing and Addressing Impacts from Port Expansion and Traffic Activity

    EPA Science Inventory

    This presentation includes a combination of modeling and measurement results to characterize near-source air quality in Newark, New Jersey with consideration of how this information could be used to inform decision making to reduce risk of health impacts. Decisions could include ...

  1. 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.

  2. Model Observers for Assessment of Image Quality

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barrett, Harrison H.; Yao, Jie; Rolland, Jannick P.; Myers, Kyle J.

    1993-11-01

    Image quality can be defined objectively in terms of the performance of some "observer" (either a human or a mathematical model) for some task of practical interest. If the end user of the image will be a human, model observers are used to predict the task performance of the human, as measured by psychophysical studies, and hence to serve as the basis for optimization of image quality. In this paper, we consider the task of detection of a weak signal in a noisy image. The mathematical observers considered include the ideal Bayesian, the nonprewhitening matched filter, a model based on lineardiscriminant analysis and referred to as the Hotelling observer, and the Hotelling and Bayesian observers modified to account for the spatial-frequency-selective channels in the human visual system. The theory behind these observer models is briefly reviewed, and several psychophysical studies relating to the choice among them are summarized. Only the Hotelling model with channels is mathematically tractable in all cases considered here and capable of accounting for all of these data. This model requires no adjustment of parameters to fit the data and is relatively insensitive to the details of the channel mechanism. We therefore suggest it as a useful model observer for the purpose of assessing and optimizing image quality with respect to simple detection tasks.

  3. 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.

  4. Assessing the Quality of Clinical Teachers

    PubMed Central

    Bolhuis, Sanneke; Grol, Richard; Laan, Roland; Wensing, Michel

    2010-01-01

    Background Learning in a clinical environment differs from formal educational settings and provides specific challenges for clinicians who are teachers. Instruments that reflect these challenges are needed to identify the strengths and weaknesses of clinical teachers. Objective To systematically review the content, validity, and aims of questionnaires used to assess clinical teachers. Data Sources MEDLINE, EMBASE, PsycINFO and ERIC from 1976 up to March 2010. Review Methods The searches revealed 54 papers on 32 instruments. Data from these papers were documented by independent researchers, using a structured format that included content of the instrument, validation methods, aims of the instrument, and its setting. Results Aspects covered by the instruments predominantly concerned the use of teaching strategies (included in 30 instruments), supporter role (29), role modeling (27), and feedback (26). Providing opportunities for clinical learning activities was included in 13 instruments. Most studies referred to literature on good clinical teaching, although they failed to provide a clear description of what constitutes a good clinical teacher. Instrument length varied from 1 to 58 items. Except for two instruments, all had to be completed by clerks/residents. Instruments served to provide formative feedback ( instruments) but were also used for resource allocation, promotion, and annual performance review (14 instruments). All but two studies reported on internal consistency and/or reliability; other aspects of validity were examined less frequently. Conclusions No instrument covered all relevant aspects of clinical teaching comprehensively. Validation of the instruments was often limited to assessment of internal consistency and reliability. Available instruments for assessing clinical teachers should be used carefully, especially for consequential decisions. There is a need for more valid comprehensive instruments. Electronic supplementary material The online

  5. The decision making control instrument to assess voluntary consent.

    PubMed

    Miller, Victoria A; Ittenbach, Richard F; Harris, Diana; Reynolds, William W; Beauchamp, Tom L; Luce, Mary Frances; Nelson, Robert M

    2011-01-01

    The decision to participate in a research intervention or to undergo medical treatment should be both informed and voluntary. The aim of the present study was to develop an instrument to measure the perceived voluntariness of parents making decisions for their seriously ill children. A total of 219 parents completed questionnaires within 10 days of making such a decision at a large, urban tertiary care hospital for children. Parents were presented with an experimental form of the Decision Making Control Instrument (DMCI), a measure of the perception of voluntariness. Data obtained from the 28-item form were analyzed using a combination of both exploratory and confirmatory factor analytic techniques. The 28 items were reduced to 9 items representing 3 oblique dimensions: Self-Control, Absence of Control, and Others' Control. The hypothesis that the 3-factor covariance structure of our model was consistent with that of the data was supported. Internal consistency for the scale as a whole was high (0.83); internal consistency for the subscales ranged from 0.68 to 0.87. DMCI scores were associated with measures of affect, trust, and decision self-efficacy, supporting the construct validity of the new instrument. The DMCI is an important new tool that can be used to inform our understanding of the voluntariness of treatment and research decisions in medical settings.

  6. The impact of decision models on self-perceived quality of life: a study on brain cancer patients

    PubMed Central

    Lucchiari, C; Botturi, A; Pravettoni, G

    2010-01-01

    Quality of life (QoL) is an increasingly important outcome measure in medicine. Health, in fact, is not only based on functional status but also on psychological and social well being. Since QoL is related to the patient’s perception of their position in life in relation to their goals, expectations, standards and concerns, the way in which the medical context is experienced may be critical. We then hypothesised that self-perceived QoL may be linked to unmet needs in information management and decision involvement. To analyse this hypothesis, we conducted a quantitative study on 84 consecutive patients with a diagnosis of primary high-grade glioma. The functional assessment of cancer therapy-Brain (FACT-Br) scales, the hospital anxiety and depression (HAD) scale and the need evaluation questionnaire (NEQ) questionnaire were used, in order to measure quality-of-life dimension, mood and unmet needs. Patients were classified as having no need (cluster 1), a moderate need (cluster 2) or a high need (cluster 3) to be more involved in the clinical process. Our data confirmed previous studies in other clinical areas, showing that shared decision might contribute to a better adaptation process to the illness [1]. In fact, patients in cluster 1 showed a significant better self-perceived QoL, despite the lack of clinical differences between clusters. The study showed that patients satisfied with respect to decisional involvement seem to be able to better cope with their disease. Finally, the study suggests the need for a more attuned decision-making process in approaching clinical decisions. Physicians need to better understand patient preferences related to information and decision sharing. PMID:22276038

  7. The impact of decision models on self-perceived quality of life: a study on brain cancer patients.

    PubMed

    Lucchiari, C; Botturi, A; Pravettoni, G

    2010-01-01

    Quality of life (QoL) is an increasingly important outcome measure in medicine. Health, in fact, is not only based on functional status but also on psychological and social well being. Since QoL is related to the patient's perception of their position in life in relation to their goals, expectations, standards and concerns, the way in which the medical context is experienced may be critical. We then hypothesised that self-perceived QoL may be linked to unmet needs in information management and decision involvement. To analyse this hypothesis, we conducted a quantitative study on 84 consecutive patients with a diagnosis of primary high-grade glioma. The functional assessment of cancer therapy-Brain (FACT-Br) scales, the hospital anxiety and depression (HAD) scale and the need evaluation questionnaire (NEQ) questionnaire were used, in order to measure quality-of-life dimension, mood and unmet needs. Patients were classified as having no need (cluster 1), a moderate need (cluster 2) or a high need (cluster 3) to be more involved in the clinical process.Our data confirmed previous studies in other clinical areas, showing that shared decision might contribute to a better adaptation process to the illness [1]. In fact, patients in cluster 1 showed a significant better self-perceived QoL, despite the lack of clinical differences between clusters. The study showed that patients satisfied with respect to decisional involvement seem to be able to better cope with their disease. Finally, the study suggests the need for a more attuned decision-making process in approaching clinical decisions. Physicians need to better understand patient preferences related to information and decision sharing.

  8. 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…

  9. 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 of...

  10. 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 effectiveness...

  11. 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 the...

  12. 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…

  13. When Quality Beats Quantity: Decision Theory, Drug Discovery, and the Reproducibility Crisis.

    PubMed

    Scannell, Jack W; Bosley, Jim

    2016-01-01

    A striking contrast runs through the last 60 years of biopharmaceutical discovery, research, and development. Huge scientific and technological gains should have increased the quality of academic science and raised industrial R&D efficiency. However, academia faces a "reproducibility crisis"; inflation-adjusted industrial R&D costs per novel drug increased nearly 100 fold between 1950 and 2010; and drugs are more likely to fail in clinical development today than in the 1970s. The contrast is explicable only if powerful headwinds reversed the gains and/or if many "gains" have proved illusory. However, discussions of reproducibility and R&D productivity rarely address this point explicitly. The main objectives of the primary research in this paper are: (a) to provide quantitatively and historically plausible explanations of the contrast; and (b) identify factors to which R&D efficiency is sensitive. We present a quantitative decision-theoretic model of the R&D process. The model represents therapeutic candidates (e.g., putative drug targets, molecules in a screening library, etc.) within a "measurement space", with candidates' positions determined by their performance on a variety of assays (e.g., binding affinity, toxicity, in vivo efficacy, etc.) whose results correlate to a greater or lesser degree. We apply decision rules to segment the space, and assess the probability of correct R&D decisions. We find that when searching for rare positives (e.g., candidates that will successfully complete clinical development), changes in the predictive validity of screening and disease models that many people working in drug discovery would regard as small and/or unknowable (i.e., an 0.1 absolute change in correlation coefficient between model output and clinical outcomes in man) can offset large (e.g., 10 fold, even 100 fold) changes in models' brute-force efficiency. We also show how validity and reproducibility correlate across a population of simulated screening and

  14. When Quality Beats Quantity: Decision Theory, Drug Discovery, and the Reproducibility Crisis

    PubMed Central

    Scannell, Jack W.; Bosley, Jim

    2016-01-01

    A striking contrast runs through the last 60 years of biopharmaceutical discovery, research, and development. Huge scientific and technological gains should have increased the quality of academic science and raised industrial R&D efficiency. However, academia faces a "reproducibility crisis"; inflation-adjusted industrial R&D costs per novel drug increased nearly 100 fold between 1950 and 2010; and drugs are more likely to fail in clinical development today than in the 1970s. The contrast is explicable only if powerful headwinds reversed the gains and/or if many "gains" have proved illusory. However, discussions of reproducibility and R&D productivity rarely address this point explicitly. The main objectives of the primary research in this paper are: (a) to provide quantitatively and historically plausible explanations of the contrast; and (b) identify factors to which R&D efficiency is sensitive. We present a quantitative decision-theoretic model of the R&D process. The model represents therapeutic candidates (e.g., putative drug targets, molecules in a screening library, etc.) within a “measurement space", with candidates' positions determined by their performance on a variety of assays (e.g., binding affinity, toxicity, in vivo efficacy, etc.) whose results correlate to a greater or lesser degree. We apply decision rules to segment the space, and assess the probability of correct R&D decisions. We find that when searching for rare positives (e.g., candidates that will successfully complete clinical development), changes in the predictive validity of screening and disease models that many people working in drug discovery would regard as small and/or unknowable (i.e., an 0.1 absolute change in correlation coefficient between model output and clinical outcomes in man) can offset large (e.g., 10 fold, even 100 fold) changes in models’ brute-force efficiency. We also show how validity and reproducibility correlate across a population of simulated screening and

  15. Economic assessment of flood forecasts for a risk-averse decision-maker

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matte, Simon; Boucher, Marie-Amélie; Boucher, Vincent; Fortier-Filion, Thomas-Charles

    2017-04-01

    A large effort has been made over the past 10 years to promote the operational use of probabilistic or ensemble streamflow forecasts. It has also been suggested in past studies that ensemble forecasts might possess a greater economic value than deterministic forecasts. However, the vast majority of recent hydro-economic literature is based on the cost-loss ratio framework, which might be appealing for its simplicity and intuitiveness. One important drawback of the cost-loss ratio is that it implicitly assumes a risk-neutral decision maker. By definition, a risk-neutral individual is indifferent to forecasts' sharpness: as long as forecasts agree with observations on average, the risk-neutral individual is satisfied. A risk-averse individual, however, is sensitive to the level of precision (sharpness) of forecasts. This person is willing to pay to increase his or her certainty about future events. In fact, this is how insurance companies operate: the probability of seeing one's house burn down is relatively low, so the expected cost related to such event is also low. However, people are willing to buy insurance to avoid the risk, however small, of loosing everything. Similarly, in a context where people's safety and property is at stake, the typical decision maker is more risk-averse than risk-neutral. Consequently, the cost-loss ratio is not the most appropriate tool to assess the economic value of flood forecasts. This presentation describes a more realistic framework for assessing the economic value of such forecasts for flood mitigation purposes. Borrowing from economics, the Constant Absolute Risk Aversion utility function (CARA) is the central tool of this new framework. Utility functions allow explicitly accounting for the level of risk aversion of the decision maker and fully exploiting the information related to ensemble forecasts' uncertainty. Three concurrent ensemble streamflow forecasting systems are compared in terms of quality (comparison with

  16. Genetic testing likelihood: the impact of abortion views and quality of life information on women's decisions.

    PubMed

    Wilson, Jessica L; Ferguson, Gail M; Thorn, Judith M

    2011-04-01

    Little is known about factors predicting the likelihood of choosing genetic testing in college aged women versus older women, including knowledge of quality of life (QOL) associated with a disorder. Using vignettes with female college students (Experiment 1: n=257, mean age=19.70 yrs) and female faculty/staff/alumni (Experiment 2: n (nulliparous)=83, mean age=30.20 yrs; n (mothers)=53, mean age=33.77 yrs), we examined the contribution of multiple factors to predicting genetic testing likelihood for cystic fibrosis. We investigated malleable situational factors (style of genetic risk presentation and providing QOL information including physical and social aspects) and stable dispositional factors (abortion views). Parity (i.e., prior births) was more influential in women's genetic testing likelihood than was age. Greater acceptability of abortion for oneself and self-assessed knowledge following QOL information were predictors of higher testing likelihood for college students. Greater acceptability of abortion for another person was a predictor for nulliparous women. Abortion views moderated the effect of predictors for nulliparous women and mothers. Findings encourage genetic counselors to utilize QOL information to promote informed decision making through genetic testing.

  17. Decision-Making Quality in Parents Considering Adenotonsillectomy or Tympanostomy Tube Insertion for Their Children.

    PubMed

    Hong, Paul; Maguire, Erin; Purcell, Mary; Ritchie, Krista C; Chorney, Jill

    2017-03-01

    decisional conflict when making decisions about their child's elective surgical treatment. Parents who perceived themselves as being more involved in the decision-making process reported less decisional conflict and decisional regret. Future research should explore the influence of decision quality on health outcomes and develop methods to improve shared decision making.

  18. Project Assessment Framework through Design (PAFTD) - A Project Assessment Framework in Support of Strategic Decision Making

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Depenbrock, Brett T.; Balint, Tibor S.; Sheehy, Jeffrey A.

    2014-01-01

    Research and development organizations that push the innovation edge of technology frequently encounter challenges when attempting to identify an investment strategy and to accurately forecast the cost and schedule performance of selected projects. Fast moving and complex environments require managers to quickly analyze and diagnose the value of returns on investment versus allocated resources. Our Project Assessment Framework through Design (PAFTD) tool facilitates decision making for NASA senior leadership to enable more strategic and consistent technology development investment analysis, beginning at implementation and continuing through the project life cycle. The framework takes an integrated approach by leveraging design principles of useability, feasibility, and viability and aligns them with methods employed by NASA's Independent Program Assessment Office for project performance assessment. The need exists to periodically revisit the justification and prioritization of technology development investments as changes occur over project life cycles. The framework informs management rapidly and comprehensively about diagnosed internal and external root causes of project performance.

  19. Factual Approach in Decision Making - the Prerequisite of Success in Quality Management

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kučerová, Marta; Škůrková Lestyánszka, Katarína

    2013-12-01

    In quality management system as well as in other managerial systems, effective decisions must be always based on the data and information analysis, i.e. based on facts, in accordance with the factual approach principle in quality management. It is therefore necessary to measure and collect the data and information about processes. The article presents the results of a conducted survey, which was focused on application of factual approach in decision making. It also offers suggestions for improvements of application of the principle in business practice. This article was prepared using the research results of VEGA project No. 1/0229/08 "Perspectives of the quality management development in relation to the requirements of market in the Slovak Republic".

  20. A Wireless Sensor Network-Based Approach with Decision Support for Monitoring Lake Water Quality

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Xiaoci; Yi, Jianjun; Chen, Shaoli; Zhu, Xiaomin

    2015-01-01

    Online monitoring and water quality analysis of lakes are urgently needed. A feasible and effective approach is to use a Wireless Sensor Network (WSN). Lake water environments, like other real world environments, present many changing and unpredictable situations. To ensure flexibility in such an environment, the WSN node has to be prepared to deal with varying situations. This paper presents a WSN self-configuration approach for lake water quality monitoring. The approach is based on the integration of a semantic framework, where a reasoner can make decisions on the configuration of WSN services. We present a WSN ontology and the relevant water quality monitoring context information, which considers its suitability in a pervasive computing environment. We also propose a rule-based reasoning engine that is used to conduct decision support through reasoning techniques and context-awareness. To evaluate the approach, we conduct usability experiments and performance benchmarks. PMID:26610496

  1. A Wireless Sensor Network-Based Approach with Decision Support for Monitoring Lake Water Quality.

    PubMed

    Huang, Xiaoci; Yi, Jianjun; Chen, Shaoli; Zhu, Xiaomin

    2015-11-19

    Online monitoring and water quality analysis of lakes are urgently needed. A feasible and effective approach is to use a Wireless Sensor Network (WSN). Lake water environments, like other real world environments, present many changing and unpredictable situations. To ensure flexibility in such an environment, the WSN node has to be prepared to deal with varying situations. This paper presents a WSN self-configuration approach for lake water quality monitoring. The approach is based on the integration of a semantic framework, where a reasoner can make decisions on the configuration of WSN services. We present a WSN ontology and the relevant water quality monitoring context information, which considers its suitability in a pervasive computing environment. We also propose a rule-based reasoning engine that is used to conduct decision support through reasoning techniques and context-awareness. To evaluate the approach, we conduct usability experiments and performance benchmarks.

  2. Quality of Online Information to Support Patient Decision-Making in Breast Cancer Surgery

    PubMed Central

    Bruce, Jordan G.; Tucholka, Jennifer L.; Steffens, Nicole M.; Neuman, Heather B.

    2015-01-01

    Background Breast cancer patients commonly use the internet as an information resource. Our objective was to evaluate the quality of online information available to support patients facing a decision for breast surgery. Methods Breast cancer surgery-related queries were performed (Google and Bing), and reviewed for content pertinent to breast cancer surgery. The DISCERN instrument was used to evaluate websites’ structural components that influence publication reliability and ability of information to support treatment decision-making. Scores of 4/5 were considered “good”. Results 45 unique websites were identified. Websites satisfied a median 5/9 content questions. Commonly omitted topics included: having a choice between breast conservation and mastectomy (67%) and potential for 2nd surgery to obtain negative margins after breast conservation (60%). Websites had a median DISCERN score of 2.9 (range 2.0–4.5). Websites achieved higher scores on structural criteria (median 3.6 [2.1–4.7]), with 24% rated as “good”. Scores on supporting decision-making questions were lower (2.6 [1.3–4.4]), with only 7% scoring “good”. Conclusion Although numerous breast cancer-related websites exist, most do a poor job providing women with essential information necessary to actively participate in decision-making for breast cancer surgery. Providing easily-accessible, high-quality online information has the potential to significantly improve patients’ experiences with decision-making. PMID:26417898

  3. Quality of online information to support patient decision-making in breast cancer surgery.

    PubMed

    Bruce, Jordan G; Tucholka, Jennifer L; Steffens, Nicole M; Neuman, Heather B

    2015-11-01

    Breast cancer patients commonly use the internet as an information resource. Our objective was to evaluate the quality of online information available to support patients facing a decision for breast surgery. Breast cancer surgery-related queries were performed (Google and Bing), and reviewed for content pertinent to breast cancer surgery. The DISCERN instrument was used to evaluate websites' structural components that influence publication reliability and ability of information to support treatment decision-making. Scores of 4/5 were considered "good." 45 unique websites were identified. Websites satisfied a median 5/9 content questions. Commonly omitted topics included: having a choice between breast conservation and mastectomy (67%) and potential for 2nd surgery to obtain negative margins after breast conservation (60%). Websites had a median DISCERN score of 2.9 (range 2.0-4.5). Websites achieved higher scores on structural criteria (median 3.6 [2.1-4.7]), with 24% rated as "good." Scores on supporting decision-making questions were lower (2.6 [1.3-4.4]), with only 7% scoring "good." Although numerous breast cancer-related websites exist, most do a poor job providing women with essential information necessary to actively participate in decision-making for breast cancer surgery. Providing easily- accessible, high-quality online information has the potential to significantly improve patients' experiences with decision-making. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  4. A multicriteria decision making model for assessment and selection of an ERP in a logistics context

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pereira, Teresa; Ferreira, Fernanda A.

    2017-07-01

    The aim of this work is to apply a methodology of decision support based on a multicriteria decision analyses (MCDA) model that allows the assessment and selection of an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) in a Portuguese logistics company by Group Decision Maker (GDM). A Decision Support system (DSS) that implements a MCDA - Multicriteria Methodology for the Assessment and Selection of Information Systems / Information Technologies (MMASSI / IT) is used based on its features and facility to change and adapt the model to a given scope. Using this DSS it was obtained the information system that best suited to the decisional context, being this result evaluated through a sensitivity and robustness analysis.

  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. Regional Lake quality patterns: Their relationship to lake conservation and management decisions

    SciTech Connect

    Peterson, S.A.; Hughes, R.M.; Larsen, D.P.; Paulsen, S.G.; Omernik, J.M.

    1996-05-01

    Understanding regional lake quality patterns is important to lake restoration. It puts specific lake conditions into perspective, provides a basis for establishing lake quality goals, identifies lakes most likely to benefit from restoration and forms a framework for assessing restoration success. Two techniques used to characterize regional lake quality patterns are discussed. Combining the two approaches provides an effective means to describe lake regions management goals and restoration success. Case examples illustrate the significant of regional lake quality to specific lake restoration projects.

  7. Do users ignore spatial data quality? A decision-theoretic perspective.

    PubMed

    van Oort, P A J; Bregt, A K

    2005-12-01

    Risk analysis (RA) has been proposed as a means of assessing fitness for use of spatial data but is only rarely adopted. The proposal is that better decisions can be made by accounting for risks due to errors in spatial data. Why is RA so rarely adopted? Most geographical information science (GISc) literature stresses educational and technical constraints. In this article we propose, based on decision theory, a number of hypotheses for why the user would be more or less willing to spend resources on RA. The hypotheses were tested with a questionnaire, which showed that the willingness to spend resources on RA depends on the presence of feedback mechanisms in the decision-making process, on how much is at stake, and to a minor extent on how well the decision-making process can be modeled.

  8. “Surgery Is Certainly One Good Option”: Quality and Time-Efficiency of Informed Decision-Making in Surgery

    PubMed Central

    Braddock, Clarence; Hudak, Pamela L.; Feldman, Jacob J.; Bereknyei, Sylvia; Frankel, Richard M.; Levinson, Wendy

    2008-01-01

    Background: Informed decision-making has been widely promoted in several medical settings, but little is known about the actual practice in orthopaedic surgery and there are no clear guidelines on how to improve the process in this setting. This study was designed to explore the quality of informed decision-making in orthopaedic practice and to identify excellent time-efficient examples with older patients. Methods: We recruited orthopaedic surgeons, and patients sixty years of age or older, in a Midwestern metropolitan area for a descriptive study performed through the analysis of audiotaped physician-patient interviews. We used a valid and reliable measure to assess the elements of informed decision-making. These included discussions of the nature of the decision, the patient's role, alternatives, pros and cons, and uncertainties; assessment of the patient's understanding and his or her desire to receive input from others; and exploration of the patient's preferences and the impact on the patient's daily life. The audiotapes were scored with regard to whether there was a complete discussion of each informed-decision-making element (an IDM-18 score of 2) or a partial discussion of each element (an IDM-18 score of 1) as well as with a more pragmatic metric (the IDM-Min score), reflecting whether there was any discussion of the patient's role or preference and of the nature of the decision. The visit duration was studied in relation to the extent of the informed decision-making, and excellent time-efficient examples were sought. Results: There were 141 informed-decision-making discussions about surgery, including knee and hip replacement as well as wrist/hand, shoulder, and arthroscopic surgery. Surgeons frequently discussed the nature of the decision (92% of the time), alternatives (62%), and risks and benefits (59%); they rarely discussed the patient's role (14%) or assessed the patient's understanding (12%). The IDM-18 scores of the 141 discussions averaged 5

  9. 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.

  10. Assessment of New Approaches in Geothermal Exploration Decision Making: Preprint

    SciTech Connect

    Akar, S.; Young, K. R.

    2015-02-01

    Geothermal exploration projects have significant amount of risk associated with uncertainties encountered in the discovery of the geothermal resource. Understanding when and how to proceed in an exploration program, and when to walk away from a site, are two of the largest challenges for increased geothermal deployment. Current methodologies for exploration decision making is left to subjective by subjective expert opinion which can be incorrectly biased by expertise (e.g. geochemistry, geophysics), geographic location of focus, and the assumed conceptual model. The aim of this project is to develop a methodology for more objective geothermal exploration decision making at a given location, including go-no-go decision points to help developers and investors decide when to give up on a location. In this scope, two different approaches are investigated: 1) value of information analysis (VOIA) which is used for evaluating and quantifying the value of a data before they are purchased, and 2) enthalpy-based exploration targeting based on reservoir size, temperature gradient estimates, and internal rate of return (IRR). The first approach, VOIA, aims to identify the value of a particular data when making decisions with an uncertain outcome. This approach targets the pre-drilling phase of exploration. These estimated VOIs are highly affected by the size of the project and still have a high degree of subjectivity in assignment of probabilities. The second approach, exploration targeting, is focused on decision making during the drilling phase. It starts with a basic geothermal project definition that includes target and minimum required production capacity and initial budgeting for exploration phases. Then, it uses average temperature gradient, reservoir temperature estimates, and production capacity to define targets and go/no-go limits. The decision analysis in this approach is based on achieving a minimum IRR at each phase of the project. This second approach was

  11. 2003 SNL ASCI applications software quality engineering assessment report.

    SciTech Connect

    Schofield, Joseph Richard, Jr.; Ellis, Molly A.; Williamson, Charles Michael; Bonano, Lora A.

    2004-02-01

    This document describes the 2003 SNL ASCI Software Quality Engineering (SQE) assessment of twenty ASCI application code teams and the results of that assessment. The purpose of this assessment was to determine code team compliance with the Sandia National Laboratories ASCI Applications Software Quality Engineering Practices, Version 2.0 as part of an overall program assessment.

  12. Assessment Quality and Practices in Secondary PE in the Netherlands

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Borghouts, Lars B.; Slingerland, Menno; Haerens, Leen

    2017-01-01

    Background: Assessment can have various functions, and is an important impetus for student learning. For assessment to be effective, it should be aligned with curriculum goals and of sufficient quality. Although it has been suggested that assessment quality in physical education (PE) is suboptimal, research into actual assessment practices has…

  13. Criteria for assessing problem solving and decision making in complex environments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Orasanu, Judith

    1993-01-01

    Training crews to cope with unanticipated problems in high-risk, high-stress environments requires models of effective problem solving and decision making. Existing decision theories use the criteria of logical consistency and mathematical optimality to evaluate decision quality. While these approaches are useful under some circumstances, the assumptions underlying these models frequently are not met in dynamic time-pressured operational environments. Also, applying formal decision models is both labor and time intensive, a luxury often lacking in operational environments. Alternate approaches and criteria are needed. Given that operational problem solving and decision making are embedded in ongoing tasks, evaluation criteria must address the relation between those activities and satisfaction of broader task goals. Effectiveness and efficiency become relevant for judging reasoning performance in operational environments. New questions must be addressed: What is the relation between the quality of decisions and overall performance by crews engaged in critical high risk tasks? Are different strategies most effective for different types of decisions? How can various decision types be characterized? A preliminary model of decision types found in air transport environments will be described along with a preliminary performance model based on an analysis of 30 flight crews. The performance analysis examined behaviors that distinguish more and less effective crews (based on performance errors). Implications for training and system design will be discussed.

  14. Criteria for assessing problem solving and decision making in complex environments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Orasanu, Judith

    1993-01-01

    Training crews to cope with unanticipated problems in high-risk, high-stress environments requires models of effective problem solving and decision making. Existing decision theories use the criteria of logical consistency and mathematical optimality to evaluate decision quality. While these approaches are useful under some circumstances, the assumptions underlying these models frequently are not met in dynamic time-pressured operational environments. Also, applying formal decision models is both labor and time intensive, a luxury often lacking in operational environments. Alternate approaches and criteria are needed. Given that operational problem solving and decision making are embedded in ongoing tasks, evaluation criteria must address the relation between those activities and satisfaction of broader task goals. Effectiveness and efficiency become relevant for judging reasoning performance in operational environments. New questions must be addressed: What is the relation between the quality of decisions and overall performance by crews engaged in critical high risk tasks? Are different strategies most effective for different types of decisions? How can various decision types be characterized? A preliminary model of decision types found in air transport environments will be described along with a preliminary performance model based on an analysis of 30 flight crews. The performance analysis examined behaviors that distinguish more and less effective crews (based on performance errors). Implications for training and system design will be discussed.

  15. 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.

  16. Quality assessment of saliva bank samples.

    PubMed

    Janardhanam, Srihari B; Zunt, Susan L; Srinivasan, Mythily

    2012-06-01

    Biospecimens, such as urine, blood, saliva, tissue, cells, DNA, RNA, and protein, are biological material to be stored in a biorepository. They constitute critical resources of molecular data for basic and translational research integrated with diagnostic, therapeutics, and prevention of human diseases. The reliability of the molecular data is dependent on the quality and the consistency of the biospecimen being analyzed. The potential of human saliva as a valuable diagnostic fluid for oral and systemic conditions is being increasingly recognized. The aim of this study is to determine the molecular quality of unstimulated whole saliva (UWS) samples stored over a period of 1 to 5 years. UWS samples collected between 2006 and 2010 (20/year) and stored at -80°C were assessed for molecular integrity. The study was approved by the institutional review board of the Indiana University Purdue University at Indianapolis. Qualitative and quantitative measurements of salivary proteins were determined by gel electrophoresis and spectrophotometry. The salivary nucleic acid content was determined by the Nanodrop method and genetic analysis. The nature of the cellular sediment in the UWS was determined by amplification of specific gene. No significant differences were observed in the amount of proteins, nucleic acid, or in the number of viable cells in the UWS samples stored for 1 to 5 years. Archived UWS samples could function as excellent biospecimen resources for measurement of protein, DNA, and RNA analytes, and act as an efficient source for human epithelial cells.

  17. Monitoring And Modeling Environmental Water Quality To Support Environmental Water Purchase Decision-making

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Null, S. E.; Elmore, L.; Mouzon, N. R.; Wood, J. R.

    2016-12-01

    More than 25 million cubic meters (20,000 acre feet) of water has been purchased from willing agricultural sellers for environmental flows in Nevada's Walker River to improve riverine habitat and connectivity with downstream Walker Lake. Reduced instream flows limit native fish populations, like Lahontan cutthroat trout, through warm daily stream temperatures and low dissolved oxygen concentrations. Environmental water purchases maintain instream flows, although effects on water quality are more varied. We use multi-year water quality monitoring and physically-based hydrodynamic and water quality modeling to estimate streamflow, water temperature, and dissolved oxygen concentrations with alternative environmental water purchases. We simulate water temperature and dissolved oxygen changes from increased streamflow to prioritize the time periods and locations that environmental water purchases most enhance trout habitat as a function of water quality. Monitoring results indicate stream temperature and dissolved oxygen limitations generally exist in the 115 kilometers upstream of Walker Lake (about 37% of the study area) from approximately May through September, and this reach acts as a water quality barrier for fish passage. Model results indicate that low streamflows generally coincide with critically warm stream temperatures, water quality refugia exist on a tributary of the Walker River, and environmental water purchases may improve stream temperature and dissolved oxygen conditions for some reaches and seasons, especially in dry years and prolonged droughts. This research supports environmental water purchase decision-making and allows water purchase decisions to be prioritized with other river restoration alternatives.

  18. Decision Topology Assessment in Engineering Design Under Uncertainity

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-01-01

    ASME International Proceedings of IDETC/ CIE 2014 ASME 2014 International Design Engineering Technical Conferences & Computers and Information...public release; distribution unlimited 13. SUPPLEMENTARY NOTES For Proceedings of IDETC/ CIE 2014 ASME 2014 International Design Engineering Technical... definition . Similarly to calculating the expectation of a utility function in decision analysis, we can calculate the expectation of the score

  19. Decision Support System for Disability Assessment and Intervention.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dowler, Denetta L.; And Others

    1991-01-01

    Constructed decision support system to aid referral of good candidates for rehabilitation from Social Security Administration to rehabilitation counselors. Three layers of system were gross screening based on policy guidelines, training materials, and interviews with experts; physical and mental functional capacity items derived from policy…

  20. Identifying and assessing the application of ecosystem services approaches in environmental policies and decision making.

    PubMed

    Van Wensem, Joke; Calow, Peter; Dollacker, Annik; Maltby, Lorraine; Olander, Lydia; Tuvendal, Magnus; Van Houtven, George

    2017-01-01

    The presumption is that ecosystem services (ES) approaches provide a better basis for environmental decision making than do other approaches because they make explicit the connection between human well-being and ecosystem structures and processes. However, the existing literature does not provide a precise description of ES approaches for environmental policy and decision making, nor does it assess whether these applications will make a difference in terms of changing decisions and improving outcomes. We describe 3 criteria that can be used to identify whether and to what extent ES approaches are being applied: 1) connect impacts all the way from ecosystem changes to human well-being, 2) consider all relevant ES affected by the decision, and 3) consider and compare the changes in well-being of different stakeholders. As a demonstration, we then analyze retrospectively whether and how the criteria were met in different decision-making contexts. For this assessment, we have developed an analysis format that describes the type of policy, the relevant scales, the decisions or questions, the decision maker, and the underlying documents. This format includes a general judgment of how far the 3 ES criteria have been applied. It shows that the criteria can be applied to many different decision-making processes, ranging from the supranational to the local scale and to different parts of decision-making processes. In conclusion we suggest these criteria could be used for assessments of the extent to which ES approaches have been and should be applied, what benefits and challenges arise, and whether using ES approaches made a difference in the decision-making process, decisions made, or outcomes of those decisions. Results from such studies could inform future use and development of ES approaches, draw attention to where the greatest benefits and challenges are, and help to target integration of ES approaches into policies, where they can be most effective. Integr Environ

  1. 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.

  2. Geospatial Data Fusion and Multigroup Decision Support for Surface Water Quality Management

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, A. Y.; Osidele, O.; Green, R. T.; Xie, H.

    2010-12-01

    Social networking and social media have gained significant popularity and brought fundamental changes to many facets of our everyday life. With the ever-increasing adoption of GPS-enabled gadgets and technology, location-based content is likely to play a central role in social networking sites. While location-based content is not new to the geoscience community, where geographic information systems (GIS) are extensively used, the delivery of useful geospatial data to targeted user groups for decision support is new. Decision makers and modelers ought to make more effective use of the new web-based tools to expand the scope of environmental awareness education, public outreach, and stakeholder interaction. Environmental decision processes are often rife with uncertainty and controversy, requiring integration of multiple sources of information and compromises between diverse interests. Fusing of multisource, multiscale environmental data for multigroup decision support is a challenging task. Toward this goal, a multigroup decision support platform should strive to achieve transparency, impartiality, and timely synthesis of information. The latter criterion often constitutes a major technical bottleneck to traditional GIS-based media, featuring large file or image sizes and requiring special processing before web deployment. Many tools and design patterns have appeared in recent years to ease the situation somewhat. In this project, we explore the use of Web 2.0 technologies for “pushing” location-based content to multigroups involved in surface water quality management and decision making. In particular, our granular bottom-up approach facilitates effective delivery of information to most relevant user groups. Our location-based content includes in-situ and remotely sensed data disseminated by NASA and other national and local agencies. Our project is demonstrated for managing the total maximum daily load (TMDL) program in the Arroyo Colorado coastal river basin

  3. Can procedural and substantive elements of decision-making be reconciled in assessments of mental capacity?

    PubMed Central

    Banner, Natalie F.

    2016-01-01

    Capacity legislation aims to protect individual autonomy and avoid undue paternalism as far as possible, partly through ensuring patients are not deemed to lack capacity because they make an unwise decision. To this end, the law employs a procedural test of capacity that excludes substantive judgments about patients’ decisions. However, clinical intuitions about patients’ capacity to make decisions about their treatment often conflict with a strict reading of the legal criteria for assessing capacity, particularly in psychiatry. In this article I argue that this tension arises because the procedural conception of capacity is inadequate and does not reflect the clinical or legal realities of assessing capacity. I propose that conceptualising capacity as having ‘recognisable reasons’ for a treatment decision provides a practical way of legitimately incorporating both procedural and substantive elements of decision-making into assessments of capacity. PMID:27891169

  4. Including Alternate Assessment Results in Accountability Decisions. NCEO Policy Directions.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Quenemoen, Rachel; Thurlow, Martha

    Alternate assessments provide a mechanism for students with complex disabilities to be included in assessment systems. An integral part of maximizing the benefits of assessing students is to include the results of alternate assessments in school accountability systems. This report addresses policy options for including the results of alternate…

  5. Systematic assessment of decision-analytic models for chronic myeloid leukemia.

    PubMed

    Rochau, Ursula; Schwarzer, Ruth; Jahn, Beate; Sroczynski, Gaby; Kluibenschaedl, Martina; Wolf, Dominik; Radich, Jerald; Brixner, Diana; Gastl, Guenther; Siebert, Uwe

    2014-04-01

    Several tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) are approved for the treatment of chronic myeloid leukemia (CML). Decision-analytic modeling can help to extrapolate data from short-term clinical trials and also consider quality of life when evaluating different treatment strategies. Our goal was to describe and analyze the structural and methodological approaches of published decision-analytic models for various treatment strategies in CML and to derive recommendations for the development of future CML models. We performed a systematic literature search in electronic databases (MEDLINE/PreMEDLINE, EconLit, EMBASE, NHS EED, and Tuft's CEA Registry) to identify published studies evaluating CML treatment strategies using mathematical models. The search was updated in August 2013. The models were required to compare different treatment strategies in relation to relevant clinical and patient-relevant health outcomes [e.g., life-years gained, quality-adjusted life-years] over a defined time horizon and population. We used standardized forms for data extraction, description of study design, methodological framework, and data sources for each model. We identified 18 different decision-analytic modeling studies. Of these, 17 included economic evaluations. Modeling approaches included decision trees, Markov cohort models, state-transition models with individual (Monte Carlo) simulations, and mathematical equations. Analytic time horizons ranged from 2 years to a lifetime. Treatment strategies compared included bone marrow or stem cell transplantation, conventional chemotherapy, interferon-α, and TKIs. Only one model evaluated a second-generation TKI. Most models did not report a model validation. All models conducted deterministic sensitivity analyses and four reported a probabilistic sensitivity analysis. Articles that were not published in English or German were not included in this review. Our literature search was restricted to published full-text articles in certain

  6. Making effective links to decision-making: Key challenges for health impact assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Elliott, Eva . E-mail: elliotte@cf.ac.uk; Francis, Sarah

    2005-10-15

    This paper draws on an exploratory research study to examine the effectiveness of health impact assessments in Wales. Through the review of five case study health impact assessments the research identified a number of benefits of the process in terms of skills and knowledge development amongst participants. The indirect contributions to decision-making were also evident including the way in which health impact assessment provided useful insights into the local community's perspective and raised awareness about the wider determinants of health. The process was also useful in establishing a dialogue between different stakeholders, which indirectly assisted decision-making and implementation. The direct links between health impact assessment and decision-making were more difficult to trace and this paper puts forward a number of suggestions for making those links more transparent. Suggestions include integrating decision-makers and clarifying the intended links to decision-making at the start of the health impact assessment process. Mainstreaming health impact assessment so that it is triggered as a routine part of all decision-making would help ensure it stands the best chance of informing decisions.

  7. A neurolaw perspective on psychiatric assessments of criminal responsibility: decision-making, mental disorder, and the brain.

    PubMed

    Meynen, Gerben

    2013-01-01

    In some criminal law cases, the defendant is assessed by a forensic psychiatrist or psychologist within the context of an insanity defense. In this article I argue that specific neuroscientific research can be helpful in improving the quality of such a forensic psychiatric evaluation. This will be clarified in two ways. Firstly, we shall adopt the approach of understanding these forensic assessments as evaluations of the influence of a mental disorder on a defendant's decision-making process. Secondly, I shall point to the fact that researchers in neuroscience have performed various studies over recent years on the influence of specific mental disorders on a patient's decision-making. I argue that such research, especially if modified to decision-making in criminal scenarios, could be very helpful to forensic psychiatric assessments. This kind of research aims to provide insights not merely into the presence of a mental disorder, but also into the actual impact of mental disorders on the decisions defendants have made in regard to their actions.

  8. Assessing Changes in High School Students' Environmental Decision-Making Skills: Some Methodological Contributions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Switzer, Anne C.

    2009-01-01

    In this study, I developed three methods for the assessment of high-school students' environmental decision-making skills. The three methods were developed based on perspectives of decision-making expertise in psychology and are named "Satisfying Results," "Coherence," and "Process Decomposition." Satisfying Results looked directly at the choices…

  9. Map Out a Public Preschool Care and Education Plan: Multiphased Need Assessment for Program Decisions. [Draft].

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Koppel, Sheree P.; Isenhour, Karen D.

    The Multiphased Need Assessment for Program Decisions (MAP) was designed to inform decision makers of a large urban school district concerning the need for early childhood programs in the community. The goals were to indicate the types of programs desired by the community; to bring together public school preschool experts; and to coordinate…

  10. EMDS users guide (version 2.0): knowledge-based decision support for ecological assessment.

    Treesearch

    Keith M. Reynolds

    1999-01-01

    The USDA Forest Service Pacific Northwest Research Station in Corvallis, Oregon, has developed the ecosystem management decision support (EMDS) system. The system integrates the logical formalism of knowledge-based reasoning into a geographic information system (GIS) environment to provide decision support for ecological landscape assessment and evaluation. The...

  11. Perceptions of Health Impact Assessments in Influencing, Policy Decisions through Health Communications

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ford, Cheryl

    2016-01-01

    Over the past 30 years, public health Practitioners worldwide have increasingly relied on Health Impact Assessments (HIAs) as a tool for informing decision makers of the potential health impacts of proposed policies, programs, and planning decisions. Adoption of the HIA is significantly less common in the United States than in international…

  12. An Assessment of Decision-Making Processes in Dual-Career Marriages.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kingsbury, Nancy M.

    As large numbers of women enter the labor force, decision making and power processes have assumed greater importance in marital relationships. A sample of 51 (N=101) dual-career couples were interviewed to assess independent variables predictive of process power, process outcome, and subjective outcomes of decision making in dual-career families.…

  13. Assessing Changes in High School Students' Environmental Decision-Making Skills: Some Methodological Contributions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Switzer, Anne C.

    2009-01-01

    In this study, I developed three methods for the assessment of high-school students' environmental decision-making skills. The three methods were developed based on perspectives of decision-making expertise in psychology and are named "Satisfying Results," "Coherence," and "Process Decomposition." Satisfying Results looked directly at the choices…

  14. Environmental condition assessment of US military installations using GIS based spatial multi-criteria decision analysis.

    PubMed

    Singer, Steve; Wang, Guangxing; Howard, Heidi; Anderson, Alan

    2012-08-01

    Environment functions in various aspects including soil and water conservation, biodiversity and habitats, and landscape aesthetics. Comprehensive assessment of environmental condition is thus a great challenge. The issues include how to assess individual environmental components such as landscape aesthetics and integrate them into an indicator that can comprehensively quantify environmental condition. In this study, a geographic information systems based spatial multi-criteria decision analysis was used to integrate environmental variables and create the indicator. This approach was applied to Fort Riley Military installation in which land condition and its dynamics due to military training activities were assessed. The indicator was derived by integrating soil erosion, water quality, landscape fragmentation, landscape aesthetics, and noise based on the weights from the experts by assessing and ranking the environmental variables in terms of their importance. The results showed that landscape level indicator well quantified the overall environmental condition and its dynamics, while the indicator at level of patch that is defined as a homogeneous area that is different from its surroundings detailed the spatiotemporal variability of environmental condition. The environmental condition was mostly determined by soil erosion, then landscape fragmentation, water quality, landscape aesthetics, and noise. Overall, environmental condition at both landscape and patch levels greatly varied depending on the degree of ground and canopy disturbance and their spatial patterns due to military training activities and being related to slope. It was also determined the environment itself could be recovered quickly once military training was halt or reduced. Thus, this study provided an effective tool for the army land managers to monitor environmental dynamics and plan military training activities. Its limitation lies at that the obtained values of the indicator vary and are

  15. A decision support system for delivering optimal quality peach and tomato

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thai, C. N.; Pease, J. N.; Shewfelt, R. L.

    1990-01-01

    Several studies have indicated that color and firmness are the two quality attributes most important to consumers in making purchasing decisions of fresh peaches and tomatoes. However, at present, retail produce managers do not have the proper information for handling fresh produce so it has the most appealing color and firmness when it reaches the consumer. This information should help them predict the consumer color and firmness perception and preference for produce from various storage conditions. Since 1987, for 'Redglobe' peach and 'Sunny' tomato, we have been generating information about their physical quality attributes (firmness and color) and their corresponding consumer sensory scores. This article reports on our current progress toward the goal of integrating such information into a model-based decision support system for retail level managers in handling fresh peaches and tomatoes.

  16. A decision support system for delivering optimal quality peach and tomato

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thai, C. N.; Pease, J. N.; Shewfelt, R. L.

    1990-01-01

    Several studies have indicated that color and firmness are the two quality attributes most important to consumers in making purchasing decisions of fresh peaches and tomatoes. However, at present, retail produce managers do not have the proper information for handling fresh produce so it has the most appealing color and firmness when it reaches the consumer. This information should help them predict the consumer color and firmness perception and preference for produce from various storage conditions. Since 1987, for 'Redglobe' peach and 'Sunny' tomato, we have been generating information about their physical quality attributes (firmness and color) and their corresponding consumer sensory scores. This article reports on our current progress toward the goal of integrating such information into a model-based decision support system for retail level managers in handling fresh peaches and tomatoes.

  17. Assessing the structure of non-routine decision processes in Airline Operations Control.

    PubMed

    Richters, Floor; Schraagen, Jan Maarten; Heerkens, Hans

    2016-03-01

    Unfamiliar severe disruptions challenge Airline Operations Control professionals most, as their expertise is stretched to its limits. This study has elicited the structure of Airline Operations Control professionals' decision process during unfamiliar disruptions by mapping three macrocognitive activities on the decision ladder: sensemaking, option evaluation and action planning. The relationship between this structure and decision quality was measured. A simulated task was staged, based on which think-aloud protocols were obtained. Results show that the general decision process structure resembles the structure of experts working under routine conditions, in terms of the general structure of the macrocognitive activities, and the rule-based approach used to identify options and actions. Surprisingly, high quality of decision outcomes was found to relate to the use of rule-based strategies. This implies that successful professionals are capable of dealing with unfamiliar problems by reframing them into familiar ones, rather than to engage in knowledge-based processing. Practitioner Summary: We examined the macrocognitive structure of Airline Operations Control professionals' decision process during a simulated unfamiliar disruption in relation to decision quality. Results suggest that successful professionals are capable of dealing with unfamiliar problems by reframing them into familiar ones, rather than to engage in knowledge-based processing.

  18. External Quality Assessment beyond the analytical phase: an Australian perspective

    PubMed Central

    Gay, Stephanie; McCaughey, Euan J.; Georgiou, Andrew

    2017-01-01

    External Quality Assessment (EQA) is the verification, on a recurring basis, that laboratory results conform to expectations for the quality required for patient care. It is now widely recognised that both the pre- and post-laboratory phase of testing, termed the diagnostic phases, are a significant source of laboratory errors. These errors have a direct impact on both the effectiveness of the laboratory and patient safety. Despite this, Australian laboratories tend to be focussed on very narrow concepts of EQA, primarily surrounding test accuracy, with little in the way of EQA programs for the diagnostic phases. There is a wide range of possibilities for the development of EQA for the diagnostic phases in Australia, such as the utilisation of scenarios and health informatics. Such programs can also be supported through advances in health information and communications technology, including electronic test ordering and clinical decision support systems. While the development of such programs will require consultation and support from the referring doctors, and their format will need careful construction to ensure that the data collected is de-identified and provides education as well as useful and informative data, we believe that there is high value in the development of such programs. Therefore, it is our opinion that all pathology laboratories should strive to be involved in an EQA program in the diagnostic phases to both monitor the diagnostic process and to identify, learn from and reduce errors and near misses in these phases in a timely fashion. PMID:28392728

  19. Sinkhole hazard assessment in Minnesota using a decision tree model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gao, Yongli; Alexander, E. Calvin

    2008-05-01

    An understanding of what influences sinkhole formation and the ability to accurately predict sinkhole hazards is critical to environmental management efforts in the karst lands of southeastern Minnesota. Based on the distribution of distances to the nearest sinkhole, sinkhole density, bedrock geology and depth to bedrock in southeastern Minnesota and northwestern Iowa, a decision tree model has been developed to construct maps of sinkhole probability in Minnesota. The decision tree model was converted as cartographic models and implemented in ArcGIS to create a preliminary sinkhole probability map in Goodhue, Wabasha, Olmsted, Fillmore, and Mower Counties. This model quantifies bedrock geology, depth to bedrock, sinkhole density, and neighborhood effects in southeastern Minnesota but excludes potential controlling factors such as structural control, topographic settings, human activities and land-use. The sinkhole probability map needs to be verified and updated as more sinkholes are mapped and more information about sinkhole formation is obtained.

  20. Dismounted Infantry Decision Skills Assessment in the Virtual Training Environment

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2005-03-01

    AVAILABILITY STATEMENT Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited. 13. SUPPLEMENTARY NOTES Subject Matter EPOC and Contracting Officer’s...environment technologies like ViSSA have the potential to provide the Army with a training capability to meet these demands to optimize human...in preparing dismounted forces for decision-making in urban operations, using the strengths of virtual environment technologies . The U.S. Army is

  1. Trading quality for relevance: non-health decision-makers' use of evidence on the social determinants of health.

    PubMed

    McGill, Elizabeth; Egan, Matt; Petticrew, Mark; Mountford, Lesley; Milton, Sarah; Whitehead, Margaret; Lock, Karen

    2015-04-02

    Local government services and policies affect health determinants across many sectors such as planning, transportation, housing and leisure. Researchers and policymakers have argued that decisions affecting wider determinants of health, well-being and inequalities should be informed by evidence. This study explores how information and evidence are defined, assessed and utilised by local professionals situated beyond the health sector, but whose decisions potentially affect health: in this case, practitioners working in design, planning and maintenance of the built environment. A qualitative study using three focus groups. A thematic analysis was undertaken. The focus groups were held in UK localities and involved local practitioners working in two UK regions, as well as in Brazil, USA and Canada. UK and international practitioners working in the design and management of the built environment at a local government level. Participants described a range of data and information that constitutes evidence, of which academic research is only one part. Built environment decision-makers value empirical evidence, but also emphasise the legitimacy and relevance of less empirical ways of thinking through narratives that associate their work to art and philosophy. Participants prioritised evidence on the acceptability, deliverability and sustainability of interventions over evidence of longer term outcomes (including many health outcomes). Participants generally privileged local information, including personal experiences and local data, but were less willing to accept evidence from contexts perceived to be different from their own. Local-level built environment practitioners utilise evidence to make decisions, but their view of 'best evidence' appears to prioritise local relevance over academic rigour. Academics can facilitate evidence-informed local decisions affecting social determinants of health by working with relevant practitioners to improve the quality of local data

  2. Quality measurement and control in physician decision making: state of the art.

    PubMed Central

    Anderson, O W; Shields, M C

    1982-01-01

    The status of the concept of controlling the quality of physicians is reviewed as are studies that have been done on methods to measure and improve quality. The conclusions are dismal given the rhetoric and actions on attempts to measure and control quality of physician decision making. Massive attempts are being made, for example, mandating PSROs to monitor quality before there is a methodology. Cost and quality reviews have, at most, a marginal impact and do not deserve the expenditures to conduct them. Studies on utilization review show minimal impact on reducing utilization. Administrative reviews reduce utilization for certain specific, narrowly defined procedures such as injections. There is no operational definition of "unnecessary" utilization. The tendency is to regard the lowest levels as optimal, presumably because they result in lower expenditures. Bureaucratic reviews do not provide incentives to decision makers the way various types of HMO delivery types do from current evidence. Hence, HMOs, deductibles and coinsurance, and competition have greater promise for limiting expenditures than do utilization reviews. Quality audits are also marginally effective because of limited promise of changing provider behavior given current methods of doing so. They miss the organizational aspects in which incentives are generated. Research is needed, therefore, on alternative forms of quality and cost control such as HMOs, physician risk sharing, competitive models, and deductibles and coinsurance. Until the much needed research has been done, the amount of resources spent on review should be minimized. In the meantime, the review processes should concentrate on extreme variations of very narrowly defined criteria of proven validity while improving the review methodology by systematic research on quality monitoring. PMID:7047464

  3. Assessment of quality of life during chemotherapy.

    PubMed

    Gunnars, B; Nygren, P; Glimelius, B

    2001-01-01

    Increasingly more aggressive chemotherapy together with expected small differences between treatments with respect to objective endpoints has heightened awareness about the importance of addressing how patients experience and value the impact that treatment has had on their overall life situation. Assessment of a patient's quality of life (QoL) is now conceptually viewed as an important complement to traditional objective evaluation measures. It was therefore considered important to review the basis for the assessment of this endpoint when The Swedish Council of Technology Assessment in Health Care (SBU) performed a systematic overview of chemotherapy effects in several tumour types. The group came to the following conclusions: QoL assessments, mostly by patient self-reporting in questionnaires, have come increasingly into use during the past decade. A number of general, cancer-specific and cancer diagnosis-specific instruments have been developed. There is at present little need for development of new cancer instruments, although specific treatment modalities and tumour types may need new additional modules. A predefined hypothesis should determine the instrument to be used. Since the selection of a QoL instrument in a specific study influences both the results and the conclusions, it is essential to carefully select the instrument or instruments that have the greatest likelihood of identifying relevant differences between treatment alternatives. Interpretation of QoL data is more difficult than interpretation of objective endpoints such as survival time, objective response rates or toxicity. Despite these difficulties, QoL analyses have provided new insights into the advantages and disadvantages of various treatments not provided by traditional end-points. Some palliative treatments seemingly increase patients' QoL despite side-effects or the lack of, or marginal, increases in survival. When using potentially curative chemotherapy, it is not a matter of when the

  4. Assessment for Systems Learning: A Holistic Assessment Framework to Support Decision Making Across the Medical Education Continuum.

    PubMed

    Bowe, Constance M; Armstrong, Elizabeth

    2017-05-01

    Viewing health care from a systems perspective-that is, "a collection of different things which, working together, produce a result not achievable by the things alone"-raises awareness of the complex interrelationships involved in meeting society's goals for accessible, cost-effective, high-quality health care. This perspective also emphasizes the far-reaching consequences of changes in one sector of a system on other components' performance. Medical education promotes this holistic view of health care in its curricula and competency requirements for graduation at the undergraduate and graduate training levels. But how completely does medical education apply a systems lens to itself?The continuum of medical training has undergone a series of changes that have moved it more closely to a systems organizational model. Competency assessment criteria have been expanded and more explicitly defined for learners at all levels of training. Outcomes data, in multiple domains, are monitored by external reviewers for program accreditation. However, translating increasing amounts of individual outcomes into actionable intelligence for decision making poses a formidable information management challenge.Assessment in systems is designed to impart a "big picture" of overall system performance through the synthesis, analysis, and interpretation of outcomes data to provide actionable information for continuous systems improvement, innovation, and long-term planning. A systems-based framework is presented for use across the medical education continuum to facilitate timely improvements in individual curriculum components, continuous improvement in overall program performance, and program decision making on changes required to better address society's health care needs.

  5. An Environmental Decision Support System for Spatial Assessment and Selective Remediation

    EPA Science Inventory

    Spatial Analysis and Decision Assistance (SADA) is a Windows freeware program that incorporates environmental assessment tools for effective problem-solving. The software integrates modules for GIS, visualization, geospatial analysis, statistical analysis, human health and ecolog...

  6. An Environmental Decision Support System for Spatial Assessment and Selective Remediation

    EPA Science Inventory

    Spatial Analysis and Decision Assistance (SADA) is a Windows freeware program that incorporates environmental assessment tools for effective problem-solving. The software integrates modules for GIS, visualization, geospatial analysis, statistical analysis, human health and ecolog...

  7. The impact of outcome knowledge, role, and quality of information on the perceived legitimacy of lethal force decisions in counter-terrorism operations.

    PubMed

    Goodwill, Alasdair M; Alison, Laurence; Lehmann, Robert; Francis, Ashley; Eyre, Marie

    2010-01-01

    According to the phenomenon of hindsight bias, once people know the outcome of an event, they tend to have biased estimates of the probability that the event would have occurred. In this study, we investigated whether hindsight bias affected judgements about the legitimacy of lethal force decisions in police shooting incidents for counter-terrorism operations. We also assessed to what extent this hindsight bias was mediated by factors such as role and information quality. Four hundred and eighty participants completed a short questionnaire that manipulated role (as senior police officer, Independent Police Complaints Commissioner, or family member, plus a "no role" control group), information quality (detailed/good or vague/ambiguous), and outcome knowledge (knowledge of outcome/hindsight versus no knowledge of outcome/foresight) in a 4 x 2 x 2 design. Results indicated that outcome knowledge affected the perception of threat and decision quality but not the blameworthiness of the senior police officer. Quality of information had a significant effect on all three dependent variables and role had a significant impact on judgements as to whether the decision to shoot was correct and also the perceived threat, though not on perceived blameworthiness. These findings indicate that people who have to judge the liability of lethal force decisions are not able to ignore outcome information, and are strongly influenced by the quality of information and by the role in which they are receiving the information.

  8. 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…

  9. 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…

  10. 42 CFR 493.1289 - Standard: Analytic systems quality assessment.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 5 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 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 §§ 493.1251...

  11. 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 §§ 493.1251...

  12. 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 §§ 493.1251...

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. Quantitative Framework for Retrospective Assessment of Interim Decisions in Clinical Trials

    PubMed Central

    Stanev, Roger

    2016-01-01

    This article presents a quantitative way of modeling the interim decisions of clinical trials. While statistical approaches tend to focus on the epistemic aspects of statistical monitoring rules, often overlooking ethical considerations, ethical approaches tend to neglect the key epistemic dimension. The proposal is a second-order decision-analytic framework. The framework provides means for retrospective assessment of interim decisions based on a clear and consistent set of criteria that combines both ethical and epistemic considerations. The framework is broadly Bayesian and addresses a fundamental question behind many concerns about clinical trials: What does it take for an interim decision (e.g., whether to stop the trial or continue) to be a good decision? Simulations illustrating the modeling of interim decisions counterfactually are provided. PMID:27353825

  17. Quantitative Framework for Retrospective Assessment of Interim Decisions in Clinical Trials.

    PubMed

    Stanev, Roger

    2016-11-01

    This article presents a quantitative way of modeling the interim decisions of clinical trials. While statistical approaches tend to focus on the epistemic aspects of statistical monitoring rules, often overlooking ethical considerations, ethical approaches tend to neglect the key epistemic dimension. The proposal is a second-order decision-analytic framework. The framework provides means for retrospective assessment of interim decisions based on a clear and consistent set of criteria that combines both ethical and epistemic considerations. The framework is broadly Bayesian and addresses a fundamental question behind many concerns about clinical trials: What does it take for an interim decision (e.g., whether to stop the trial or continue) to be a good decision? Simulations illustrating the modeling of interim decisions counterfactually are provided.

  18. Clinical judgment and decision-making in wound assessment and management: is experience enough?

    PubMed

    Logan, Gemma

    2015-03-01

    The assessment and management of wounds forms a large proportion of community nurses' workload, often requiring judgment and decision-making in complex, challenging and uncertain circumstances. The processes through which nurses form judgments and make decisions within this context are reviewed in this article against existing theories on these subjects. There is variability in wound assessment and management practice which may be attributed to uncertainties within the context, a lack of knowledge in appropriate treatment choices and the inability to correctly value the importance of the clinical information presented. Nurses may be required to draw on intuition to guide their judgments and decision-making by association with experience and expertise. In addition, a step-by-step analytical approach underpinned by an evidence base may be required to ensure accuracy in practice. Developing an understanding of the different theories of judgment and decision-making may facilitate nurses' abilities to reflect on their own decision tasks, thereby enhancing the care provided.

  19. 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.

  20. A decision support system for assessing landfill performance

    SciTech Connect

    Celik, Basak; Girgin, Sertan; Yazici, Adnan; Unlue, Kahraman

    2010-01-15

    Designing environmentally sound landfills is a challenging engineering task due to complex interactions of numerous design variables; such as landfill size, waste characteristics, and site hydrogeology. Decision support systems (DSS) can be utilized to handle these complex interactions and to aid in a performance-based landfill design by coupling system simulation models (SSM). The aim of this paper is to present a decision support system developed for a performance-based landfill design. The developed DSS is called Landfill Design Decision Support System - LFDSS. A two-step DSS framework, composed of preliminary design and detailed design phases, is set to effectively couple and run the SSMs and calculation modules. In preliminary design phase, preliminary design alternatives are proposed using general site data. In detailed design phase, proposed design alternatives are further simulated under site-specific data using SSMs for performance evaluation. LFDSS calculates the required landfill volume, performs landfill base contour design, proposes preliminary design alternatives based on general site conditions, evaluates the performance of the proposed designs, calculates the factor of safety values for slope stability analyses, and performs major cost calculations. The DSS evaluates the results of all landfill design alternatives, and determines whether the design satisfies the predefined performance criteria. The DSS ultimately enables comparisons among different landfill designs based on their performances (i.e. leachate head stability, and groundwater contamination), constructional stability and costs. The developed DSS was applied to a real site, and the results demonstrated the strengths of the developed system on designing environmentally sound and feasible landfills.

  1. A decision support system for assessing landfill performance.

    PubMed

    Celik, Başak; Girgin, Sertan; Yazici, Adnan; Unlü, Kahraman

    2010-01-01

    Designing environmentally sound landfills is a challenging engineering task due to complex interactions of numerous design variables; such as landfill size, waste characteristics, and site hydrogeology. Decision support systems (DSS) can be utilized to handle these complex interactions and to aid in a performance-based landfill design by coupling system simulation models (SSM). The aim of this paper is to present a decision support system developed for a performance-based landfill design. The developed DSS is called Landfill Design Decision Support System - LFDSS. A two-step DSS framework, composed of preliminary design and detailed design phases, is set to effectively couple and run the SSMs and calculation modules. In preliminary design phase, preliminary design alternatives are proposed using general site data. In detailed design phase, proposed design alternatives are further simulated under site-specific data using SSMs for performance evaluation. LFDSS calculates the required landfill volume, performs landfill base contour design, proposes preliminary design alternatives based on general site conditions, evaluates the performance of the proposed designs, calculates the factor of safety values for slope stability analyses, and performs major cost calculations. The DSS evaluates the results of all landfill design alternatives, and determines whether the design satisfies the predefined performance criteria. The DSS ultimately enables comparisons among different landfill designs based on their performances (i.e. leachate head stability, and groundwater contamination), constructional stability and costs. The developed DSS was applied to a real site, and the results demonstrated the strengths of the developed system on designing environmentally sound and feasible landfills.

  2. Assessment of emergency general surgery care based on formally developed quality indicators.

    PubMed

    Ingraham, Angela; Nathens, Avery; Peitzman, Andrew; Bode, Allison; Dorlac, Gina; Dorlac, Warren; Miller, Preston; Sadeghi, Mahsa; Wasserman, Deena D; Bilimoria, Karl

    2017-08-01

    Emergency general surgery outcomes vary widely across the United States. The utilization of quality indicators can reduce variation and assist providers in administering care aligned with established recommendations. Previous quality indicators have not focused on emergency general surgery patients. We identified indicators of high-quality emergency general surgery care and assessed patient- and hospital-level compliance with these indicators. We utilized a modified Delphi technique (RAND Appropriateness Methodology) to develop quality indicators. Through 2 rankings, an expert panel ranked potential quality indicators for validity. We then examined historic compliance with select quality indicators after 4 nonelective procedures (cholecystectomy, appendectomy, colectomy, small bowel resection) at 4 academic centers. Of 25 indicators rated as valid, 13 addressed patient-level quality and 12 addressed hospital-level quality. Adherence with 18 indicators was assessed. Compliance with performing a cholecystectomy for acute cholecystitis within 72 hours of symptom onset ranged from 45% to 76%. Compliance with surgery start times within 3 hours from the decision to operate for uncontained perforated viscus ranged from 20% to 100%. Compliance with exploration of patients with small bowel obstructions with ischemia/impending perforation within 3 hours of the decision to operate was 0% to 88%. For 3 quality indicators (auditing 30-day unplanned readmissions/operations for patients previously managed nonoperatively, monitoring time to source control for intra-abdominal infections, and having protocols for bypass/transfer), none of the hospitals were compliant. Developing indicators for providers to assess their performance provides a foundation for specific initiatives. Adherence to quality indicators may improve the quality of emergency general surgery care provided for which current outcomes are potentially modifiable. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Interactions of Landowners' Land Use Decisions with Flood and Water Quality

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsai, Y.; Mohammed, I. N.; Turnbull, S.; Zia, A.; Bomblies, A.

    2014-12-01

    Human-induced changes in landscape occurring at an unprecedented rate and spatial scale have significantly altered the hydrological processes. However, due to the complexity of human decision making on land management in response to various socio-economic circumstances, anthropogenic changes in landscape rarely occur homogenously across temporal and special scales, so do the underlying drivers for land management decisions. For this reason and that for achieving more sustainable natural resources management, we develop a cascading integrated assessment model (CIAM) that accounts for dynamic land use characteristics in modeling hydrological variability, heterogeneity in human land management decisions under various socio-economic scenarios, and feedback of hydrological responses to human behaviors. The CIAM consists of two core components: the interactive land-use transition agent-based model (ILUTABM) and the Regional Hydro-Ecological Simulation System (RHESSys). The ILUTABM simulates heterogeneity in land use decisions at parcel levels by differentiating decision making processes for agricultural, urban and forest landowners. A landowner is expected to make decisions given his expected utility with respect to different underlying socio-economic drivers given the landowner category and the characteristics of his landholdings. These attributes of the land include but not limited to the neighboring land use, zoning rules, current use, soil, slope and elevation. The RHESSys is physical-based watershed model that uses a hierarchical spatial framework to simulate runoff, snow, soil and vegetation processes. Here we use the CIAM to examine the impacts of coupled landscape and climate changes on flood and nutrient transport and consequently the impacts of flood and nutrient loadings on human decisions for land use in the Missisquoi Watershed, Vermont.

  4. A collaborative approach to supporting communication in the assessment of decision-making capacity.

    PubMed

    Zuscak, Simon John; Peisah, Carmelle; Ferguson, Alison

    2016-01-01

    This paper explores the clinical implications of acquired communication disorders in decisional capacity. Discipline-specific contributions are discussed in a multidisciplinary context, with a specific focus on the role of speech and language pathologists (SLPs). Key rehabilitation issues in determining decisional capacity are identified. The impact of communication impairment on capacity is discussed in light of the research literature relating to supportive communication and collaborative practice that respects human rights. Guidelines are presented for professionals involved in the assessment of the decisional capacity of individuals with communication disorders of neurological origin. They guide an assessor through: assessing cognition, language and speech; determining preferred communication domains; and practical strategies and considerations for maximising communication. There is a dearth of guidelines available that deal with augmenting and supporting communication of individuals with acquired communication disorders of neurological origin when it comes to assessing legal decision-making capacity. Capacity assessment is a multidisciplinary realm, and the involvement of SLPs is key to maximising the decision-making capacity of these individuals. All clinicians have an obligation to maximise client autonomy and participation in decision-making. Assessments of capacity should involve a general cognitive ability assessment, followed by a decision-specific assessment tool or question set for the decision facing the patient. The involvement of speech and language pathologists (SLPs) is key to assess and facilitate capacity determinations in instances of cognitive-communication disorder. Impairments in different aspects of auditory comprehension require different accommodations.

  5. Breast Cancer Treatment Decision Making among Latinas and non-Latina Whites: A Communication Model Predicting Decisional Outcomes and Quality of Life

    PubMed Central

    Yanez, Betina; Stanton, Annette L.; Maly, Rose C.

    2014-01-01

    Objective Deciding among medical treatment options is a pivotal event following cancer diagnosis, a task that can be particularly daunting for individuals uncomfortable with communication in a medical context. Few studies have explored the surgical decision-making process and associated outcomes among Latinas. We propose a model to elucidate pathways though which acculturation (indicated by language use) and reports of communication effectiveness specific to medical decision making contribute to decisional outcomes (i.e., congruency between preferred and actual involvement in decision making, treatment satisfaction) and quality of life among Latinas and non-Latina White women with breast cancer. Methods Latinas (N = 326) and non-Latina Whites (N = 168) completed measures six months after breast cancer diagnosis, and quality of life was assessed 18 months after diagnosis. Structural equation modeling was used to examine relationships between language use, communication effectiveness, and outcomes. Results Among Latinas, 63% reported congruency in decision making, whereas 76% of non-Latina Whites reported congruency. In Latinas, greater use of English was related to better reported communication effectiveness. Effectiveness in communication was not related to congruency in decision making, but several indicators of effectiveness in communication were related to greater treatment satisfaction, as was greater congruency in decision making. Greater treatment satisfaction predicted more favorable quality of life. The final model fit the data well only for Latinas. Differences in quality of life and effectiveness in communication were observed between racial/ethnic groups. Conclusions Findings underscore the importance of developing targeted interventions for physicians and Latinas with breast cancer to enhance communication in decision making. PMID:22746263

  6. The GRAIDS Trial: the development and evaluation of computer decision support for cancer genetic risk assessment in primary care.

    PubMed

    Emery, J

    2005-01-01

    The development and evaluation of computer decision support for the assessment of cancer genetic risk in primary care is reported with two series of studies described: the RAGs (Risk Assessment in Genetics) studies and the GRAIDS (Genetic Risk Assessment in an Intranet and Decision Support) Trial. In the GRAIDS Trial, 45 general practices in Eastern England have been recruited and randomised. Comparison practices attend an educational session and receive clinical guidelines about familial breast and colorectal cancer. In the intervention practices a lead clinician is trained in cancer genetics and use of the GRAIDS software. The GRAIDS software is a simple pedigree-drawing program that implements clinical guidelines for familial breast and colorectal cancer and presents individualised information about breast cancer risk in a range of formats. Outcome measures of the trial include: frequency of software use, practitioners' attitudes towards the software, total number of referrals to secondary care about familial cancer and the proportion that meet regional referral criteria, and a patient-centred measure of informed decision making. The family history will become an increasingly important tool in primary care to assess genetic risk. This research evaluates an approach to support high-quality advice about cancer genetics in primary care which could be applied more broadly as our understanding of complex disease genetics increases.

  7. Decision-making in honeybee swarms based on quality and distance information of candidate nest sites.

    PubMed

    Laomettachit, Teeraphan; Termsaithong, Teerasit; Sae-Tang, Anuwat; Duangphakdee, Orawan

    2015-01-07

    In the nest-site selection process of honeybee swarms, an individual bee performs a waggle dance to communicate information about direction, quality, and distance of a discovered site to other bees at the swarm. Initially, different groups of bees dance to represent different potential sites, but eventually the swarm usually reaches an agreement for only one site. Here, we model the nest-site selection process in honeybee swarms of Apis mellifera and show how the swarms make adaptive decisions based on a trade-off between the quality and distance to candidate nest sites. We use bifurcation analysis and stochastic simulations to reveal that the swarm's site distance preference is moderate>near>far when the swarms choose between low quality sites. However, the distance preference becomes near>moderate>far when the swarms choose between high quality sites. Our simulations also indicate that swarms with large population size prefer nearer sites and, in addition, are more adaptive at making decisions based on available information compared to swarms with smaller population size. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. The impact of health technology assessment reports on decision making in Austria.

    PubMed

    Zechmeister, Ingrid; Schumacher, Ines

    2012-01-01

    Health technology assessment (HTA) was established in Austria in the 1990s and, since then, it has gained considerable importance. In this study, we aim to analyze whether the HTA reports that have been produced at the Institute for Technology Assessment (ITA) and at the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute for HTA (LBI-HTA) have had an impact on decision making within the Austrian health care system. We selected all reports that were intended for supporting (i) reimbursement/investment or (ii) disinvestment decisions. Eleven full HTA reports and fifty-eight rapid assessments fulfilled the inclusion criteria. We used interview data and administrative data on volumes, tariffs and expenditure of products/services to analyze whether and how reports were in reality used in decision making and what the consequences for health care expenditure and resource distribution have been. Five full HTA reports and fifty-six rapid technology assessments were used for reimbursement decisions. Four full HTA reports and two rapid assessments were used for disinvestment decisions and resulted in reduced volumes and expenditure. Two full HTA reports showed no impact on decision making. Impact was most evident for hospital technologies. HTA has played some role in reducing volumes of over-supplied hospital technologies, resulting in reduced expenditure for several hospital providers. Additionally, it has been increasingly included in prospective planning and reimbursement decisions of late, indicating re-distribution of resources toward evidence-based technologies. However, further factors may have influenced the decisions, and the impact could be considerably increased by systematically incorporating HTA into the decision-making process in Austria.

  9. Some implications of the technology assessment function for the effective public decision-making process

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mayo, L. H.

    1971-01-01

    A preliminary provisional assessment of the prospects for the establishment of an adequate technology assessment function and the implications of the assessment function for the public decision process are presented. Effects of the technology assessment function on each phase of the public decision process and briefly explored. Significant implications during the next decade are projected with respect to the following phases: invention and development of alternative means (technological configurations); evaluation, selection and promotion of preferred courses of action; and modification of statutory scheme or social action program as an outcome of continuing monitoring and appraisal.

  10. A Fuzzy Group Decision Making Model for Ordinal Peer Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Capuano, Nicola; Loia, Vincenzo; Orciuoli, Francesco

    2017-01-01

    Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) are becoming an increasingly popular choice for education but, to reach their full extent, they require the resolution of new issues like assessing students at scale. A feasible approach to tackle this problem is peer assessment, in which students also play the role of assessor for assignments submitted by…

  11. Innovative tools for quality assessment: integrated quality criteria for review of multiple study designs (ICROMS).

    PubMed

    Zingg, W; Castro-Sanchez, E; Secci, F V; Edwards, R; Drumright, L N; Sevdalis, N; Holmes, A H

    2016-04-01

    With the aim to facilitate a more comprehensive review process in public health including patient safety, we established a tool that we have termed ICROMS (Integrated quality Criteria for the Review Of Multiple Study designs), which unifies, integrates and refines current quality criteria for a large range of study designs including qualitative research. Review, pilot testing and expert consensus. The tool is the result of an iterative four phase process over two years: 1) gathering of established criteria for assessing controlled, non-controlled and qualitative study designs; 2) pilot testing of a first version in two systematic reviews on behavioural change in infection prevention and control and in antibiotic prescribing; 3) further refinement and adding of additional study designs in the context of the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control funded project 'Systematic review and evidence-based guidance on organisation of hospital infection control programmes' (SIGHT); 4) scrutiny by the pan-European expert panel of the SIGHT project, which had the objective of ensuring robustness of the systematic review. ICROMS includes established quality criteria for randomised studies, controlled before-and-after studies and interrupted time series, and incorporates criteria for non-controlled before-and-after studies, cohort studies and qualitative studies. The tool consists of two parts: 1) a list of quality criteria specific for each study design, as well as criteria applicable across all study designs by using a scoring system; 2) a 'decision matrix', which specifies the robustness of the study by identifying minimum requirements according to the study type and the relevance of the study to the review question. The decision matrix directly determines inclusion or exclusion of a study in the review. ICROMS was applied to a series of systematic reviews to test its feasibility and usefulness in the appraisal of multiple study designs. The tool was applicable

  12. 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

  13. Moving beyond the cost-loss ratio: economic assessment of streamflow forecasts for a risk-averse decision maker

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matte, Simon; Boucher, Marie-Amélie; Boucher, Vincent; Fortier Filion, Thomas-Charles

    2017-06-01

    A large effort has been made over the past 10 years to promote the operational use of probabilistic or ensemble streamflow forecasts. Numerous studies have shown that ensemble forecasts are of higher quality than deterministic ones. Many studies also conclude that decisions based on ensemble rather than deterministic forecasts lead to better decisions in the context of flood mitigation. Hence, it is believed that ensemble forecasts possess a greater economic and social value for both decision makers and the general population. However, the vast majority of, if not all, existing hydro-economic studies rely on a cost-loss ratio framework that assumes a risk-neutral decision maker. To overcome this important flaw, this study borrows from economics and evaluates the economic value of early warning flood systems using the well-known Constant Absolute Risk Aversion (CARA) utility function, which explicitly accounts for the level of risk aversion of the decision maker. This new framework allows for the full exploitation of the information related to a forecasts' uncertainty, making it especially suited for the economic assessment of ensemble or probabilistic forecasts. Rather than comparing deterministic and ensemble forecasts, this study focuses on comparing different types of ensemble forecasts. There are multiple ways of assessing and representing forecast uncertainty. Consequently, there exist many different means of building an ensemble forecasting system for future streamflow. One such possibility is to dress deterministic forecasts using the statistics of past error forecasts. Such dressing methods are popular among operational agencies because of their simplicity and intuitiveness. Another approach is the use of ensemble meteorological forecasts for precipitation and temperature, which are then provided as inputs to one or many hydrological model(s). In this study, three concurrent ensemble streamflow forecasting systems are compared: simple statistically dressed

  14. Coordinating vendor-buyer decisions for imperfect quality items considering trade credit and fully backlogged shortages

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khanna, Aditi; Gautam, Prerna; Jaggi, Chandra K.

    2016-03-01

    Supply chain management has become a critical issue for modern business environments. In today's world of cooperative decision-making, individual decisions in order to reduce inventory costs may not lead to an overall optimal solution. Coordination is necessary among participants of supply chain to achieve better performance. There are legitimate and important efforts from the vendor to enhance the relation with buyer; one such effort is offering trade credit which has been a driver of growth and development of business between them. The cost of financing is a core consideration in effective financial management, in general and in context of business. Also, due to imperfect production a vendor may produce defective items which results in shortages. Motivated with these aspects, an integrated vendor-buyer inventory model is developed for imperfect quality items with allowable shortages; in which the vendor offers credit period to the buyer for payment. The objective is to minimize the total joint annual costs incurred by the vendor and the buyer by using integrated decision making approach. The expected total annual integrated cost is derived and a solution procedure is provided to find the optimal solution. Numerical analysis shows that the integrated model gives an impressive cost reduction, in comparison to independent decision policies by the vendor and the buyer.

  15. Evaluation and selection of decision-making methods to assess landfill mining projects.

    PubMed

    Hermann, Robert; Baumgartner, Rupert J; Vorbach, Stefan; Ragossnig, Arne; Pomberger, Roland

    2015-09-01

    For the first time in Austria, fundamental technological and economic studies on recovering secondary raw materials from large landfills have been carried out, based on the 'LAMIS - Landfill Mining Austria' pilot project. A main focus of the research - and the subject of this article - was to develop an assessment or decision-making procedure that allows landfill owners to thoroughly examine the feasibility of a landfill mining project in advance. Currently there are no standard procedures that would sufficiently cover all the multiple-criteria requirements. The basic structure of the multiple attribute decision making process was used to narrow down on selection, conceptual design and assessment of suitable procedures. Along with a breakdown into preliminary and main assessment, the entire foundation required was created, such as definitions of requirements to an assessment method, selection and accurate description of the various assessment criteria and classification of the target system for the present 'landfill mining' vs. 'retaining the landfill in after-care' decision-making problem. Based on these studies, cost-utility analysis and the analytical-hierarchy process were selected from the range of multiple attribute decision-making procedures and examined in detail. Overall, both methods have their pros and cons with regard to their use for assessing landfill mining projects. Merging these methods or connecting them with single-criteria decision-making methods (like the net present value method) may turn out to be reasonable and constitute an appropriate assessment method.

  16. [Quantitative assessment of quality of vision].

    PubMed

    Oshika, Tetsuro

    2004-12-01

    The importance of quality of vision (QOV) along with quality of life (QOL) in medicine has been recently widely recognized. We have conducted studies to quantitatively analyze factors related to QOV. Irregular astigmatism can be a significant obstacle for achieving satisfactory QOV. Videokeratography data were broken down using Fourier harmonic series analysis into spherical power, regular astigmatism (second harmonic component, n = 2), asymmetry (n = 1), and higher order irregularity (n > or = 3). The irregular astigmatism component calculated by the Fourier analysis significantly correlated with best spectacle-corrected visual acuity. Software was developed to display color-coded maps for the four Fourier indices. The normal range was defined for each Fourier index, and eyes with pathologic and postsurgical conditions were evaluated using the normal range. Progression of keratoconus over time was quantitatively described by Fourier analysis of the videokeratography data. Using the Fourier method, changes in corneal topography following suture removal after penetrating keratoplasty were evaluated. Fourier analysis of videokeratography data significantly facilitated determination of refraction and measurement of best spectacle-corrected visual acuity in eyes with corneal irregular astigmatism such as post-penetrating keratoplasty eyes. Higher-order wavefront aberrations of the cornea were calculated by expanding videokeratography elevation data into Zernike polynomials, and coma and spherical aberrations were computed. For ocular aberrations, the data obtained with the Hartmann-Shack sensor were decomposed into Zernike polynomials. Coma aberrations of the cornea significantly correlated with age, while corneal spherical aberrations showed no age-related changes. The time-course of changes in corneal higher-order aberrations was reported for photorefractive keratectomy and laser in situ keratomileusis (LASIK). For ocular aberrations, the degree of tilting of the

  17. Suicide risk assessment in Australian emergency departments: assessing clinicians' disposition decisions.

    PubMed

    Weiland, T J; Cotter, A; Jelinek, G A; Phillips, G

    2014-01-01

    Objective. To determine (1) the uniformity of disposition decisions made by clinicians working in Australian emergency departments (EDs) using vignettes describing patients presenting with deliberate self-harm or suicide risk; (2) factors associated with these decisions; (3) factors associated with confidence in these decisions. Methodology. We validated and distributed by email an online survey tool to Australian emergency clinicians via their colleges. Participants were presented with five vignettes and asked to rate the level of risk and protective factors for suicide, the patient's disposition (admit/discharge/review), factors influencing this decision, their confidence in the decision, and factors that would have improved their confidence. Results. Percentages of participants choosing the modal disposition decision for each scenario ranged from 58.6% (136/232) to 92.4% (220/238), demonstrating uniformity in clinicians' disposition decisions. Predictors of disposition were consistently level of risk factors perceived and, infrequently, clinician factors including age and years experience. Confidence in disposition decisions was high across scenarios. Clinicians reported patient, clinician, contextual and decision support factors relevant to an Australian emergency context affected their disposition decisions and confidence in decisions. Conclusion. Emergency clinicians are uniform and confident in their disposition decisions for patient vignettes where there is risk of suicide or self harm.

  18. Suicide Risk Assessment in Australian Emergency Departments: Assessing Clinicians' Disposition Decisions

    PubMed Central

    Weiland, T. J.; Cotter, A.; Jelinek, G. A.; Phillips, G.

    2014-01-01

    Objective. To determine (1) the uniformity of disposition decisions made by clinicians working in Australian emergency departments (EDs) using vignettes describing patients presenting with deliberate self-harm or suicide risk; (2) factors associated with these decisions; (3) factors associated with confidence in these decisions. Methodology. We validated and distributed by email an online survey tool to Australian emergency clinicians via their colleges. Participants were presented with five vignettes and asked to rate the level of risk and protective factors for suicide, the patient's disposition (admit/discharge/review), factors influencing this decision, their confidence in the decision, and factors that would have improved their confidence. Results. Percentages of participants choosing the modal disposition decision for each scenario ranged from 58.6% (136/232) to 92.4% (220/238), demonstrating uniformity in clinicians' disposition decisions. Predictors of disposition were consistently level of risk factors perceived and, infrequently, clinician factors including age and years experience. Confidence in disposition decisions was high across scenarios. Clinicians reported patient, clinician, contextual and decision support factors relevant to an Australian emergency context affected their disposition decisions and confidence in decisions. Conclusion. Emergency clinicians are uniform and confident in their disposition decisions for patient vignettes where there is risk of suicide or self harm. PMID:24804190

  19. Framework for Human Health Risk Assessment to Inform Decision Making

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    The purpose of this document is to describe a Framework for conducting human health risk assessments that are responsive to the needs of decision‐making processes in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

  20. A framework for guiding sustainability assessment and on-farm strategic decision making

    SciTech Connect

    Coteur, Ine; Marchand, Fleur; Debruyne, Lies; Dalemans, Floris; Lauwers, Ludwig

    2016-09-15

    Responding to future challenges and societal needs, various actions are taken in agriculture to evolve towards more sustainable farming practices. These actions imply strategic choices and suppose adequate sustainability assessments to identify, measure, evaluate and communicate sustainable development. However, literature is scarce on the link between strategic decision making and sustainability assessment. As questions emerge on how, what and when to measure, the objective of this paper is to construct a framework for guiding sustainability assessment and on-farm strategic decision making. Qualitative research on own experiences from the past and a recent project revealed four categories of actual needs farmers, advisors and experts have regarding sustainability assessment: context, flexibility, focus on farm and farmer and communication. These stakeholders' needs are then incorporated into a two-dimensional framework that marries the intrinsic complexity of sustainability assessment tools and the time frame of strategic decision making. The framework allows a farm-specific and flexible approach leading to harmonized actions towards sustainable farming. As this framework is mainly a procedural instrument to guide the use of sustainability assessment tools within strategic decision making, it fits to incorporate, even guide, future research on sustainability assessment tools themselves and on their adoption on farms. - Highlights: • How to link sustainability assessment and on-farm strategic decision making is unclear. • Two-dimensional framework incorporating stakeholders' needs regarding sustainability assessment • Linking complexity of sustainability assessment tools and the time frame of strategic decision making • Farm-specific and flexible approach to harmonize action towards sustainable farming.

  1. RECOVERY ACT - Methods for Decision under Technological Change Uncertainty and Risk Assessment for Integrated Assessment of Climate Change

    SciTech Connect

    Webster, Mort David

    2015-03-10

    This report presents the final outcomes and products of the project as performed at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The research project consists of three main components: methodology development for decision-making under uncertainty, improving the resolution of the electricity sector to improve integrated assessment, and application of these methods to integrated assessment. Results in each area is described in the report.

  2. RECOVERY ACT - Methods for Decision under Technological Change Uncertainty and Risk Assessment for Integrated Assessment of Climate Change

    SciTech Connect

    Webster, Mort D.

    2015-11-30

    This report presents the final outcomes and products of the project as performed both at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and subsequently at Pennsylvania State University. The research project can be divided into three main components: methodology development for decision-making under uncertainty, improving the resolution of the electricity sector to improve integrated assessment, and application of these methods to integrated assessment.

  3. A Framework Incorporating Community Preferences in Use Attainment and Related Water Quality Decision-Making (2010 Final)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The report is intended to assist water quality officials, watershed managers, members of stakeholder groups, and other interested individuals in fully evaluating ecological and socioeconomic objectives and the gains and losses that often are involved in use attainment decisions. ...

  4. A Framework Incorporating Community Preferences in Use Attainment and Related Water Quality Decision-Making (2010 Final)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The report is intended to assist water quality officials, watershed managers, members of stakeholder groups, and other interested individuals in fully evaluating ecological and socioeconomic objectives and the gains and losses that often are involved in use attainment decisions. ...

  5. Using landscape ecology to focus ecological risk assessment and guide risk management decision-making.

    PubMed

    Kapustka, L A; Galbraith, H; Luxon, B M; Yocum, J

    2001-06-01

    Ecological risk assessment (EcoRA) generally suffers from limited application of ecological knowledge in the definition and characterization of real-world sites. Not surprisingly, most remediation decisions, which follow, have little or no relationship to the valued ecological resources of the site or the broader region. The practice has evolved to favor engineering-based mitigation strategies, which eliminate excess chemical concentrations at sites, or otherwise break exposure pathways, but which may not be ecologically beneficial. The heavy emphasis of EcoRA on toxicity threshold levels tends to focus dollars on clean up of small areas or volumes with high concentrations. Moreover, intrusive remediation technologies often render an area uninhabitable to the very species that were to be protected. Infusion of ecological knowledge into EcoRA has been difficult. Most professional ecologists choose not to venture into the messy applied fields, leaving their impressive knowledge untapped. Moreover, narrowly defined responsibilities within government circles can limit cooperation and coordination. The realization that land use activities often have greater adverse consequences to wildlife than do chemicals provides an opportunity to change attitudes and practices. We are developing procedures that incorporate landscape features into the environmental management process. Specifically, we are using an iterative approach to: a) identify scenarios where habitat value is important in EcoRAs; b) guide selection of appropriate assessment species, i) keyed to wildlife distribution ranges; ii) keyed to a database of habitat suitability models; iii) cross-linked with the EPA exposure handbook species; iv) referenced to wildlife distributions (e.g., breeding bird survey); c) define data collection needs for reconnaissance-, screening-, and definitive-level characterization of habitat quality for potential assessment species; d) generate spatially explicit descriptions of habitat

  6. Assessing the Problem Formulation in an Integrated Assessment Model: Implications for Climate Policy Decision-Support

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garner, G. G.; Reed, P. M.; Keller, K.

    2014-12-01

    Integrated assessment models (IAMs) are often used with the intent to aid in climate change decisionmaking. Numerous studies have analyzed the effects of parametric and/or structural uncertainties in IAMs, but uncertainties regarding the problem formulation are often overlooked. Here we use the Dynamic Integrated model of Climate and the Economy (DICE) to analyze the effects of uncertainty surrounding the problem formulation. The standard DICE model adopts a single objective to maximize a weighted sum of utilities of per-capita consumption. Decisionmakers, however, may be concerned with a broader range of values and preferences that are not captured by this a priori definition of utility. We reformulate the problem by introducing three additional objectives that represent values such as (i) reliably limiting global average warming to two degrees Celsius and minimizing both (ii) the costs of abatement and (iii) the damages due to climate change. We derive a set of Pareto-optimal solutions over which decisionmakers can trade-off and assess performance criteria a posteriori. We illustrate the potential for myopia in the traditional problem formulation and discuss the capability of this multiobjective formulation to provide decision support.

  7. Risk assessment and decision making about in-labour transfer from rural maternity care: a social judgment and signal detection analysis

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background The importance of respecting women’s wishes to give birth close to their local community is supported by policy in many developed countries. However, persistent concerns about the quality and safety of maternity care in rural communities have been expressed. Safe childbirth in rural communities depends on good risk assessment and decision making as to whether and when the transfer of a woman in labour to an obstetric led unit is required. This is a difficult decision. Wide variation in transfer rates between rural maternity units have been reported suggesting different decision making criteria may be involved; furthermore, rural midwives and family doctors report feeling isolated in making these decisions and that staff in urban centres do not understand the difficulties they face. In order to develop more evidence based decision making strategies greater understanding of the way in which maternity care providers currently make decisions is required. This study aimed to examine how midwives working in urban and rural settings and obstetricians make intrapartum transfer decisions, and describe sources of variation in decision making. Methods The study was conducted in three stages. 1. 20 midwives and four obstetricians described factors influencing transfer decisions. 2. Vignettes depicting an intrapartum scenario were developed based on stage one data. 3. Vignettes were presented to 122 midwives and 12 obstetricians who were asked to assess the level of risk in each case and decide whether to transfer or not. Social judgment analysis was used to identify the factors and factor weights used in assessment. Signal detection analysis was used to identify participants’ ability to distinguish high and low risk cases and personal decision thresholds. Results When reviewing the same case information in vignettes midwives in different settings and obstetricians made very similar risk assessments. Despite this, a wide range of transfer decisions were still

  8. Water quality assessment of bioenergy production

    Treesearch

    Rocio Diaz-Chavez; Goran Berndes; Dan Neary; Andre Elia Neto; Mamadou Fall

    2011-01-01

    Water quality is a measurement of the biological, chemical, and physical characteristics of water against certain standards set to ensure ecological and/or human health. Biomass production and conversion to fuels and electricity can impact water quality in lakes, rivers, and aquifers with consequences for aquatic ecosystem health and also human water uses. Depending on...

  9. 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…

  10. 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…

  11. SOIL QUALITY ASSESSMENT USING FUZZY MODELING

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    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...

  12. Germination tests for assessing biochar quality

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    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 ...

  13. Identification and Assessment of Potential Water Quality Impact Factors for Drinking-Water Reservoirs

    PubMed Central

    Gu, Qing; Deng, Jinsong; Wang, Ke; Lin, Yi; Li, Jun; Gan, Muye; Ma, Ligang; Hong, Yang

    2014-01-01

    Various reservoirs have been serving as the most important drinking water sources in Zhejiang Province, China, due to the uneven distribution of precipitation and severe river pollution. Unfortunately, rapid urbanization and industrialization have been continuously challenging the water quality of the drinking-water reservoirs. The identification and assessment of potential impacts is indispensable in water resource management and protection. This study investigates the drinking water reservoirs in Zhejiang Province to better understand the potential impact on water quality. Altogether seventy-three typical drinking reservoirs in Zhejiang Province encompassing various water storage levels were selected and evaluated. Using fifty-two reservoirs as training samples, the classification and regression tree (CART) method and sixteen comprehensive variables, including six sub-sets (land use, population, socio-economy, geographical features, inherent characteristics, and climate), were adopted to establish a decision-making model for identifying and assessing their potential impacts on drinking-water quality. The water quality class of the remaining twenty-one reservoirs was then predicted and tested based on the decision-making model, resulting in a water quality class attribution accuracy of 81.0%. Based on the decision rules and quantitative importance of the independent variables, industrial emissions was identified as the most important factor influencing the water quality of reservoirs; land use and human habitation also had a substantial impact on water quality. The results of this study provide insights into the factors impacting the water quality of reservoirs as well as basic information for protecting reservoir water resources. PMID:24919129

  14. Assessing water quality with submersed aquatic vegetation

    SciTech Connect

    Dennison, W.C. ); Orth, R.J.; Moore, K.A. ); Stevenson, J.C. ); Carter, V. ); Kollar, S. ); Bergstrom, P.W.; Batiuk, R.A. )

    1993-02-01

    Estuaries throughout the world are experiencing water quality problems as the result of human population growth in coastal areas. By establishing the habitat requirements of critical submerged aquatic vegetation, water quality can be evaluated and restoration goals can be made. This study used submerged vegetation in Chesapeake Bay to examine the habitat and health of the Bay. Both natural distributions and transplant survival in different studies were analyzed. The five habitat requirements used were light attenuation, total suspended solids, chlorophyll, dissolved inorganic nitrogen, and dissolved inorganic phosphorus. Water-quality conditions supporting vegetation growth to one meter depth was used. This study represents the first attempt at linking habitat requirements of a living resource to water quality standards in an estuarine system. It allows for predictive capability without detailed knowledge of the precise nature of vegetation/water quality interactions.

  15. Choosing and using climate change scenarios for ecological-impact assessments and conservation decisions

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Amy K. Snover,; Nathan J. Mantua,; Littell, Jeremy; Michael A. Alexander,; Michelle M. McClure,; Janet Nye,

    2013-01-01

    Increased concern over climate change is demonstrated by the many efforts to assess climate effects and develop adaptation strategies. Scientists, resource managers, and decision makers are increasingly expected to use climate information, but they struggle with its uncertainty. With the current proliferation of climate simulations and downscaling methods, scientifically credible strategies for selecting a subset for analysis and decision making are needed. Drawing on a rich literature in climate science and impact assessment and on experience working with natural resource scientists and decision makers, we devised guidelines for choosing climate-change scenarios for ecological impact assessment that recognize irreducible uncertainty in climate projections and address common misconceptions about this uncertainty. This approach involves identifying primary local climate drivers by climate sensitivity of the biological system of interest; determining appropriate sources of information for future changes in those drivers; considering how well processes controlling local climate are spatially resolved; and selecting scenarios based on considering observed emission trends, relative importance of natural climate variability, and risk tolerance and time horizon of the associated decision. The most appropriate scenarios for a particular analysis will not necessarily be the most appropriate for another due to differences in local climate drivers, biophysical linkages to climate, decision characteristics, and how well a model simulates the climate parameters and processes of interest. Given these complexities, we recommend interaction among climate scientists, natural and physical scientists, and decision makers throughout the process of choosing and using climate-change scenarios for ecological impact assessment.

  16. The perspective awareness model - Eliciting multiple perspectives to formulate high quality decisions

    SciTech Connect

    Boucher, Laurel

    2013-07-01

    A great deal of attention is given to the importance of communication in environmental remediation and radioactive waste management. However, very little attention is given to eliciting multiple perspectives so as to formulate high quality decisions. Plans that are based on a limited number of perspectives tend to be narrowly focused whereas those that are based on a wide variety of perspectives tend to be comprehensive, higher quality, and more apt to be put into application. In addition, existing methods of dialogue have built-in limitations in that they typically draw from the predominant thinking patterns which focus in some areas but ignore others. This can result in clarity but a lack of comprehensiveness. This paper presents a Perspective Awareness Model which helps groups such as partnering teams, interagency teams, steering committees, and working groups elicit a wide net of perspectives and viewpoints. The paper begins by describing five factors that makes cooperation among such groups challenging. Next, a Perspective Awareness Model that makes it possible to manage these five factors is presented. The two primary components of this model --- the eight 'Thinking Directions' and the 'Shared Documentation' --- are described in detail. Several examples are given to illustrate how the Perspective Awareness Model can be used to elicit multiple perspectives to formulate high quality decisions in the area of environmental remediation and radioactive waste management. (authors)

  17. 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…

  18. 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.

  19. 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…

  20. 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…

  1. 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…

  2. 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…

  3. 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,…

  4. 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

  5. Information Quality in Regulatory Decision Making: Peer Review versus Good Laboratory Practice

    PubMed Central

    Borgert, Christopher J.; Mihaich, Ellen M.

    2012-01-01

    Background: There is an ongoing discussion on the provenance of toxicity testing data regarding how best to ensure its validity and credibility. A central argument is whether journal peer-review procedures are superior to Good Laboratory Practice (GLP) standards employed for compliance with regulatory mandates. Objective: We sought to evaluate the rationale for regulatory decision making based on peer-review procedures versus GLP standards. Method: We examined pertinent published literature regarding how scientific data quality and validity are evaluated for peer review, GLP compliance, and development of regulations. Discussion: Some contend that peer review is a coherent, consistent evaluative procedure providing quality control for experimental data generation, analysis, and reporting sufficient to reliably establish relative merit, whereas GLP is seen as merely a tracking process designed to thwart investigator corruption. This view is not supported by published analyses pointing to subjectivity and variability in peer-review processes. Although GLP is not designed to establish relative merit, it is an internationally accepted quality assurance, quality control method for documenting experimental conduct and data. Conclusions: Neither process is completely sufficient for establishing relative scientific soundness. However, changes occurring both in peer-review processes and in regulatory guidance resulting in clearer, more transparent communication of scientific information point to an emerging convergence in ensuring information quality. The solution to determining relative merit lies in developing a well-documented, generally accepted weight-of-evidence scheme to evaluate both peer-reviewed and GLP information used in regulatory decision making where both merit and specific relevance inform the process. PMID:22343028

  6. 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.

  7. A visual quality assessment tool for solar radiation data

    SciTech Connect

    Wilcox, S.

    1996-11-01

    The acquisition of consistent high-quality data depends heavily on a quality assessment regimen that allows a data analyst to detect and respond to problems when they occur. This is particularly true of network operations for which a large volume of data must be summarized and assimilated. This paper describes a concept for a visual solar radiation measurement quality assessment tool that takes advantage of current computer and printer technology. The concept allows a data analyst to more easily interpret trends in quality assessment flagging during a period of time. This concept is also a useful tool for investigating data acquisition problems.

  8. 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.

  9. 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…

  10. 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…

  11. 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…

  12. 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…

  13. 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…

  14. 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…

  15. 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…

  16. 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…

  17. 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…

  18. 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…

  19. 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…

  20. 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…

  1. 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…

  2. 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…

  3. 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…

  4. Assessing quality of pre-service physics teachers' written arguments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aydeniz, Mehmet; Gürçay, Deniz

    2013-11-01

    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 either support or challenge the Turkish government's decision to invest in nuclear power plants. Data consist of written arguments developed by the participants and information on participants' knowledge of the topic, their confidence in their knowledge and the source of their knowledge related to the topic. Data were analyzed using the CER framework. Results: The results show that participants did not perform at the expected level. The majority of students failed to develop strong scientific arguments. While almost all of the participants provided evidence to justify their claims, they failed to effectively coordinate evidence, claim and theory to develop an argument. Students struggled the most in the warrant/reasoning category of the CER framework. We also identified several misconceptions that students held related to nuclear power plants. Conclusions: In our discussion we problematize college science teaching and advocate integration of instructional strategies such as argumentation that can effectively engage students in construction, evaluation and justification of knowledge.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. Interference of partial visual analysis of root filling quality and apical status on retreatment decisions

    PubMed Central

    MORGENTAL, Renata Dornelles; dos SANTOS, Régis Burmeister; RÖSING, Cassiano Kuchenbecker; CHANIN, Taís do Amaral; de FIGUEIREDO, José Antônio Poli

    2012-01-01

    Objective The presence of periapical radiolucency has been used as a criterion for endodontic treatment failure. However, in addition to the inherent limitations of radiographic examinations, radiographic interpretations are extremely subjective. Thus, this study investigated the effect of partial analysis of root filling quality and periapical status on retreatment decisions by general dentists. Material and Methods Twelve digitalized periapical radiographs were analyzed by 10 observers. The study was conducted at three time points at 1-week intervals. Radiographs edited with the Adobe Photoshop CS4 software were analyzed at three time points: first, only root filling quality was analyzed; second, only the periapical areas of the teeth under study were visualized; finally, observers analyzed the unedited radiographic image. Spearman's coefficient was used to analyze the correlations between the scores assigned when the periapical area was not visible and when the unedited radiograph was analyzed, as well as between the scores assigned when root fillings where not visible and when the unedited radiograph was analyzed. Sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive values between partial images and unedited radiographs were also used to analyze retreatment decisions. The level of significance was set at 5%. Results The visualization of the root filling on the unedited radiograph affected the interpretation of the periapical status and the technical quality of the fillings has a greater influence on the general dentist's decision to prescribe endodontic retreatment than the periapical condition. Conclusion In order to make endodontic diagnosis, radiographic interpretation process should not only emphasize technical aspects, but also consider biological factors. PMID:22666838

  8. REGIONAL VULNERABILITY ASSESSMENT (REVA) IMPROVING ENVIRONMENTAL DECISION MAKING THROUGH CLIENT PARTNERSHIPS

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Regional Vulnerability Assessment (ReV A) Program is an applied research program t,1at is focusing on using spatial information and model results to support environmental decision-making at regional- down to local-scales. Re VA has developed analysis and assessment methods to...

  9. Decision Making Models for Using Multiple Assessment Results. EREAPA Publication Series No. 93-8.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wheeler, Patricia H.

    A sound performance evaluation system uses a multitude of assessment methods to gather information and data about the performance of an individual. Four models are described that have been used with multiple assessment results to make decisions about performance. In a compensatory model, weak performance on one measure or attribute can be traded…

  10. Assessment Centers: Decision-Making Information from Non-Test-Based Methods.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Niehoff, Marilee S.

    1983-01-01

    Describes the function of an assessment center, which consists of a standardized evaluation of behavior based on multiple inputs. Judgments are made in part by means of specially developed assessment simulations based on a thorough job analysis. Such judgments are used for management decision-making and career development. (JAC)

  11. A Model for Making Decisions about Ethical Dilemmas in Student Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Johnson, Robert L.; Liu, Jin; Burgess, Yin

    2017-01-01

    In this mixed-methods study we investigated the development of a generalized ethics decision-making model that can be applied in considering ethical dilemmas related to student assessment. For the study, we developed five scenarios that describe ethical dilemmas associated with student assessment. Survey participants (i.e., educators) completed an…

  12. Ecosystem Management Decision Support (EMDS) Applied to Watershed Assessment on California's North Coast

    Treesearch

    Rich Walker; Chris Keithley; Russ Henly; Scott Downie; Steve Cannata

    2007-01-01

    In 2001, the state of California initiated the North Coast Watershed Assessment Program (2003a) to assemble information on the status of coastal watersheds that have historically supported anadromous fish. The five-agency consortium explored the use of Ecosystem Management Decision Support (EMDS) (Reynolds and others 1996) as a means to help assess overall watershed...

  13. Test Reviews: Euler, B. L. (2007). "Emotional Disturbance Decision Tree". Lutz, FL: Psychological Assessment Resources

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tansy, Michael

    2009-01-01

    The Emotional Disturbance Decision Tree (EDDT) is a teacher-completed norm-referenced rating scale published by Psychological Assessment Resources, Inc., in Lutz, Florida. The 156-item EDDT was developed for use as part of a broader assessment process to screen and assist in the identification of 5- to 18-year-old children for the special…

  14. Effect of Mode of Interest Assessment on Clients' Career Decision-Making Self-Efficacy

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Uffelman, Rachel A.; Subich, Linda Mezydlo; Diegelman, Nathan M.; Wagner, Kimberly S.; Bardash, Rebekah J.

    2004-01-01

    To compare the effects of three different modes of interest assessment on career decision-making self-efficacy, 81 career-undecided college students participated in one of the following four conditions: an assessment intervention using the Strong Interest Inventory, an intervention using one of two methods of applying the Self-Directed Search, or…

  15. The Integrated Medical Model - A Risk Assessment and Decision Support Tool for Human Space Flight Missions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kerstman, Eric; Minard, Charles G.; Saile, Lynn; FreiredeCarvalho, Mary; Myers, Jerry; Walton, Marlei; Butler, Douglas; Lopez, Vilma

    2010-01-01

    The Integrated Medical Model (IMM) is a decision support tool that is useful to space flight mission planners and medical system designers in assessing risks and optimizing medical systems. The IMM employs an evidence-based, probabilistic risk assessment (PRA) approach within the operational constraints of space flight.

  16. REGIONAL VULNERABILITY ASSESSMENT (REVA) IMPROVING ENVIRONMENTAL DECISION MAKING THROUGH CLIENT PARTNERSHIPS

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Regional Vulnerability Assessment (ReV A) Program is an applied research program t,1at is focusing on using spatial information and model results to support environmental decision-making at regional- down to local-scales. Re VA has developed analysis and assessment methods to...

  17. The Effect of Multimedia Replacing Text in Resident Clinical Decision-Making Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chang, Todd P.; Schrager, Sheree M.; Rake, Alyssa J.; Chan, Michael W.; Pham, Phung K.; Christman, Grant

    2017-01-01

    Multimedia in assessing clinical decision-making skills (CDMS) has been poorly studied, particularly in comparison to traditional text-based assessments. The literature suggests multimedia is more difficult for trainees. We hypothesize that pediatric residents score lower in diagnostic skill when clinical vignettes use multimedia rather than text…

  18. Test Reviews: Euler, B. L. (2007). "Emotional Disturbance Decision Tree". Lutz, FL: Psychological Assessment Resources

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tansy, Michael

    2009-01-01

    The Emotional Disturbance Decision Tree (EDDT) is a teacher-completed norm-referenced rating scale published by Psychological Assessment Resources, Inc., in Lutz, Florida. The 156-item EDDT was developed for use as part of a broader assessment process to screen and assist in the identification of 5- to 18-year-old children for the special…

  19. The Testing Phase for the Small Unit Decision Making (SUDM) Assessment Battery

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-07-28

    of a decision-making assessment battery. The five cognitive competencies are sensemaking, problem solving, adaptability, metacognition , and... Metacognition Metacognitive Awareness Inventory MAWI S Attention Control Neuro-Cognitive Assessment NCA T Adaptability Adaptive Force Scale...Reasoning Metacognitive Activities Inventory MAI S Anomaly Detection Resilience Brief Resilience Scale BRS T Connor-Davidson Resilience Scale

  20. Development of interim oak assessment guidelines for the silvah decision-support system

    Treesearch

    Patrick H. Brose

    2007-01-01

    Updates to the SILVAH decision-support system make it more applicable to the mixed oak forests of Pennsylvania and other mid-Atlantic states. This update required establishing interim inventory guidelines for assessing the competitive ability of advance oak regeneration. This assessment was complicated by oak’s growth strategy, emphasizing root development in lieu of...

  1. Providing Information for Decision-Makers in Michigan: Compilation, Analyses, and Reporting of Assessment Data.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Loadman, William E.; Major, John L.

    Act Number 307, Public Acts of Michigan 1969, mandates that the Department of Education provide annual assessment of pupil achievement in basic skills -- reading, vocabulary, English expression and mathematics. The purpose of the assessment program is to provide information about groups of children for decision makers at the state level. A…

  2. Improving Data Driven Decision Making through Assessment Literacy for Respondents

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Petersen, Naomi Jeffery; Davies, Randall S.; Spitzer, Bruce

    2006-01-01

    This study examined the use of a college course evaluation instrument in an effort to better understand and improve the assessment data derived from the instrument. The purpose of the analysis was to examine the dimensionality and reliability of the instrument but, more importantly, to understand what the data really tells us and whether…

  3. The effect of sampling strategies on assessment of water quality criteria attainment.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yuxin; Wilson, Jessica M; VanBriesen, Jeanne M

    2015-05-01

    Sample locations for large river studies affect the representativeness of data, and thus can alter decisions made regarding river conditions and the need for interventions to improve water quality. The present study evaluated three water-quality sampling programs for Total Dissolved Solid (TDS) assessment in the Monongahela River from 2008 to 2012. The sampling plans cover the same 145 km of river but differ in frequency, sample location and type (e.g., river water sample vs drinking water plant intake sample). Differences resulting from temporal and spatial variability in sampling lead to different conclusions regarding water quality in the river (including regulatory listing decisions), especially when low flow leads to concentrations at or near the water quality criteria (500mg/L TDS). Drinking water samples exceeded the criteria 82 out of 650 samples (12.6%), while river water samples exceeded the criteria 47 out of 464 samples (10.1%). Different water sample types could provide different pictures of water quality in the river and lead to different regulatory listing decisions.

  4. Integrating Water Quality and River Rehabilitation Management - A Decision-Analytical Perspective

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reichert, P.; Langhans, S.; Lienert, J.; Schuwirth, N.

    2009-04-01

    Integrative river management involves difficult decisions about alternative measures to improve their ecological state. For this reason, it seems useful to apply knowledge from the decision sciences to support river management. We discuss how decision-analytical elements can be employed for designing an integrated river management procedure. An important aspect of this procedure is to clearly separate scientific predictions of the consequences of alternatives from objectives to be achieved by river management. The key elements of the suggested procedure are (i) the quantitative elicitation of the objectives from different stakeholder groups, (ii) the compilation of the current scientific knowledge about the consequences of the effects resulting from suggested measures in the form of a probabilistic mathematical model, and (iii) the use of these predictions and valuations to prioritize alternatives, to uncover conflicting objectives, to support the design of better alternatives, and to improve the transparency of communication about the chosen management strategy. The development of this procedure led to insights regarding necessary steps to be taken for rational decision-making in river management, to guidelines about the use of decision-analytical techniques for performing these steps, but also to new insights about the application of decision-analytical techniques in general. In particular, the consideration of the spatial distribution of the effects of measures and the potential added value of connected rehabilitated river reaches leads to favoring measures that have a positive effect beyond a single river reach. As these effects only propagate within the river network, this results in a river basin oriented management concept as a consequence of a rational decision support procedure, rather than as an a priori management paradigm. There are also limitations to the support that can be expected from the decision-analytical perspective. It will not provide the

  5. Using the Reliability Theory for Assessing the Decision Confidence Probability for Comparative Life Cycle Assessments.

    PubMed

    Wei, Wei; Larrey-Lassalle, Pyrène; Faure, Thierry; Dumoulin, Nicolas; Roux, Philippe; Mathias, Jean-Denis

    2016-03-01

    Comparative decision making process is widely used to identify which option (system, product, service, etc.) has smaller environmental footprints and for providing recommendations that help stakeholders take future decisions. However, the uncertainty problem complicates the comparison and the decision making. Probability-based decision support in LCA is a way to help stakeholders in their decision-making process. It calculates the decision confidence probability which expresses the probability of a option to have a smaller environmental impact than the one of another option. Here we apply the reliability theory to approximate the decision confidence probability. We compare the traditional Monte Carlo method with a reliability method called FORM method. The Monte Carlo method needs high computational time to calculate the decision confidence probability. The FORM method enables us to approximate the decision confidence probability with fewer simulations than the Monte Carlo method by approximating the response surface. Moreover, the FORM method calculates the associated importance factors that correspond to a sensitivity analysis in relation to the probability. The importance factors allow stakeholders to determine which factors influence their decision. Our results clearly show that the reliability method provides additional useful information to stakeholders as well as it reduces the computational time.

  6. Local School Board Members Need Quality Public Information That Informs Decisions, Empowers Action. Don't Make Decisions in the Dark

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Data Quality Campaign, 2014

    2014-01-01

    Local school board members need to be able to access and use high-quality data to make good decisions. Often this data is collected and stored locally, but information that is publicly reported by the state can provide additional value. Most state public reporting is designed to serve information needs, and are geared toward compliance with state…

  7. 2D/3D video content adaptation decision engine based on content classification and user assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fernandes, Rui; Andrade, M. T.

    2017-07-01

    Multimedia adaptation depends on several factors, such as the content itself, the consumption device and its characteristics, the transport and access networks and the user. An adaptation decision engine, in order to provide the best possible Quality of Experience to a user, needs to have information about all variables that may influence its decision. For the aforementioned factors, we implement content classification, define device classes, consider limited bandwidth scenarios and categorize user preferences based on a subjective quality evaluation test. The results of these actions generate vital information to pass to the adaptation decision engine so that its operation may provide the indication of the most suitable adaptation to perform that delivers the best possible outcome for the user under the existing constraints.

  8. 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.

  9. Assessing changes in high school students' environmental decision-making skills: Some methodological contributions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Switzer, Anne C.

    In this study, I developed three methods for the assessment of high-school students' environmental decision-making skills. The three methods were developed based on perspectives of decision-making expertise in psychology and are named Satisfying Results, Coherence, and Process Decomposition . Satisfying Results looked directly at the choices students made. Coherence looked at the match between students' choices and their values, and Satisfying Results focused on individual steps of decision-making, with my focus being consequential thinking. With these three methods. I examined changes in 172 secondary students' environmental decision-making skills. The students in the sample studied the first unit of Investigations in Environmental Science: A Case-Based Approach to the Study of Environmental Science (CASES), a curriculum designed for grades 9-12. Integrated with the science content in CASES, students were introduced to the Stakeholder-Consequences Decision Making (SCDM) process. I pre- and post-tested students who experienced the first out of three units of CASES. I used the New Ecological Paradigm scale to look at students' values, as that was necessary for the Coherence perspective. The students' results varied with the decision-making perspective as well as with instruction of two CASES teachers. Relative to instruction, classroom management and the values exemplified by the teacher were examined. The overall results reflect that the assessment methods were able to detect positive gains based on particular goals that CASES stated for teaching environmental decision-making. Specifically, there was evidence of progress with both the "Coherence" and "Process Decomposition" results, which were goals of CASES. The methodology used in this study may be useful for grounding future studies of students' decision-making skills. In particular, the methods developed here can be utilized for matching assessment methods to teaching goals, as well as to entering the realm of

  10. Assessing the sensibility of two clinical decision support systems.

    PubMed

    Graham, Timothy A D; Bullard, Michael J; Kushniruk, Andre W; Holroyd, Brian R; Rowe, Brian H

    2008-10-01

    Clinicians in Emergency Medicine (EM) are increasingly exposed to guidelines and treatment recommendations. To help access and recall these recommendations, electronic Clinical Decision Support Systems (CDSS) have been developed. This study examined the use and sensibility of two CDSS designed for emergency physicians. CDDS for community acquired pneumonia (CAP) and neutropenic fever (NF) were developed by multidisciplinary teams and have been accessed via an intranet-based homepage (eCPG) for several years. Sensibility is a term coined by Feinstein that describes common sense aspects of a survey instrument. It was modified by emergency researchers to include four main headings: (1) Appropriateness; (2) Objectivity; (3) Content; and (4) Discriminative Power. Sensibility surveys were developed using an iterative approach for both the CAP and NF CDSS and distributed to all 25 emergency physicians at one Canadian site. The overall response rate was 88%. Respondents were 88% male and 83% were less than 40; all were attending EM physicians with specialty designations. A number reported never having used the CAP (21%) or NF (33%) CDSS; 54% (CAP) and 21% (NF) of respondents had used the respective CDSS less than 10 times. Overall, both CDSS were rated highly by users with a mean response of 4.95 (SD 0.56) for CAP and 5.62 (SD 0.62) for NF on a seven-point Likert scale. The majority or respondents (CAP 59%, NF 80%) felt that the NF CDSS was more likely than the CAP CDSS to decrease the chances of making a medical error in medication dose, antibiotic choice or patient disposition (4.61 vs. 5.81, p=0.008). Despite being in place for several years, CDSS for CAP and NF are not used by all EM clinicians. Users were generally satisfied with the CDSS and felt that the NF was more likely than the CAP CDSS to decrease medical errors. Additional research is required to determine the barriers to CDSS use.

  11. 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.

  12. Adaptive Design of a Decision Support System for Compromise Assessment.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1987-03-01

    for a reasonable amount of time to pro - vide continuity to the system. This lack of continuity was a con - tributing factor to the current problem of...compromise assess- ments. The only requirements specified by SAC are that the following general topics be discussed: * Currency /accuracy • Relationship to...be presented to SAC. 9. .* k, - .".4. 4. A. Ill. Methodology The following four objectives (as discussed in Chapter I) pro - vide a course of action

  13. Assessing Sustainment Operations in a Decisive Action Training Environment

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2017-05-01

    Additional Analyses SOP vs. No SOP In prior research, whether units had an SOP or not was a strong predictor of performance ; units with an SOP...Yes/No) were used as predictor variables. The questions selected from the CP Operations Checklist to assess performance were the continuous...A790 5d. TASK NUMBER 215 5e. WORK UNIT NUMBER 7. PERFORMING ORGANIZATION NAME(S) AND ADDRESS(ES) Consortium Universities of

  14. Research iris serial images quality assessment method based on HVS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Zhi-hui; Zhang, Chang-hai; Ming, Xing; Zhao, Yong-hua

    2006-01-01

    Iris recognition can be widely used in security and customs, and it provides superiority security than other human feature recognition such as fingerprint, face and so on. The iris image quality is crucial to recognition effect. Accordingly reliable image quality assessments are necessary for evaluating iris image quality. However, there haven't uniformly criterion to Image quality assessment. Image quality assessment have Objective and Subjective Evaluation methods, In practice, However Subjective Evaluation method is fussy and doesn't effective on iris recognition. Objective Evaluation method should be used in iris recognition. According to human visual system model (HVS) Multi-scale and selectivity characteristic, it presents a new iris Image quality assessment method. In the paper, ROI is found and wavelet transform zero-crossing is used to find Multi-scale edge, and Multi-scale fusion measure is used to assess iris image quality. In experiment, Objective and Subjective Evaluation methods are used to assess iris images. From the results, the method is effectively to iris image quality assessment.

  15. Evaluation of a software package for automated quality assessment of contrast detail images—comparison with subjective visual assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pascoal, A.; Lawinski, C. P.; Honey, I.; Blake, P.

    2005-12-01

    Contrast detail analysis is commonly used to assess image quality (IQ) associated with diagnostic imaging systems. Applications include routine assessment of equipment performance and optimization studies. Most frequently, the evaluation of contrast detail images involves human observers visually detecting the threshold contrast detail combinations in the image. However, the subjective nature of human perception and the variations in the decision threshold pose limits to the minimum image quality variations detectable with reliability. Objective methods of assessment of image quality such as automated scoring have the potential to overcome the above limitations. A software package (CDRAD analyser) developed for automated scoring of images produced with the CDRAD test object was evaluated. Its performance to assess absolute and relative IQ was compared with that of an average observer. Results show that the software does not mimic the absolute performance of the average observer. The software proved more sensitive and was able to detect smaller low-contrast variations. The observer's performance was superior to the software's in the detection of smaller details. Both scoring methods showed frequent agreement in the detection of image quality variations resulting from changes in kVp and KERMAdetector, which indicates the potential to use the software CDRAD analyser for assessment of relative IQ.

  16. Modeling access, cost, and perceived quality: computer simulation benefits orthodontic clinic staffing decisions.

    PubMed

    Montgomery, J B; LaFrancois, G G; Perry, M J

    2000-02-01

    Given limited financial resources, simulation permits a financial analysis of the optimum staffing levels for orthodontists and dental assistants in an orthodontic clinic. A computer simulation provides the information for managerial review. This study, by building a computer simulation of an orthodontic service, set out to determine the most efficient mix between providers and support staff to maximize access, maximize perceived quality, and minimize expenditures. Six combinations of providers and support staff were compared during an animated, computer-generated what-if analysis. Based on the clinic workload and size, on the cost per patient, and on the cost per quality point, the research team recommended a staffing mix of one orthodontist and three assistants. This study shows that computer simulation is an enormous asset as a decision support tool for management.

  17. Instruments to assess the perception of physicians in the decision-making process of specific clinical encounters: a systematic review.

    PubMed

    Légaré, France; Moher, David; Elwyn, Glyn; LeBlanc, Annie; Gravel, Karine

    2007-10-15

    The measurement of processes and outcomes that reflect the complexity of the decision-making process within specific clinical encounters is an important area of research to pursue. A systematic review was conducted to identify instruments that assess the perception physicians have of the decision-making process within specific clinical encounters. For every year available up until April 2007, PubMed, PsycINFO, Current Contents, Dissertation Abstracts and Sociological Abstracts were searched for original studies in English or French. Reference lists from retrieved studies were also consulted. Studies were included if they reported a self-administered instrument evaluating physicians' perceptions of the decision-making process within specific clinical encounters, contained sufficient description to permit critical appraisal and presented quantitative results based on administering the instrument. Two individuals independently assessed the eligibility of the instruments and abstracted information on their conceptual underpinnings, main evaluation domain, development, format, reliability, validity and responsiveness. They also assessed the quality of the studies that reported on the development of the instruments with a modified version of STARD. Out of 3431 records identified and screened for evaluation, 26 potentially relevant instruments were assessed; 11 met the inclusion criteria. Five instruments were published before 1995. Among those published after 1995, five offered a corresponding patient version. Overall, the main evaluation domains were: satisfaction with the clinical encounter (n = 2), mutual understanding between health professional and patient (n = 2), mental workload (n = 1), frustration with the clinical encounter (n = 1), nurse-physician collaboration (n = 1), perceptions of communication competence (n = 2), degree of comfort with a decision (n = 1) and information on medication (n = 1). For most instruments (n = 10), some reliability and validity

  18. Instruments to assess the perception of physicians in the decision-making process of specific clinical encounters: a systematic review

    PubMed Central

    Légaré, France; Moher, David; Elwyn, Glyn; LeBlanc, Annie; Gravel, Karine

    2007-01-01

    Background The measurement of processes and outcomes that reflect the complexity of the decision-making process within specific clinical encounters is an important area of research to pursue. A systematic review was conducted to identify instruments that assess the perception physicians have of the decision-making process within specific clinical encounters. Methods For every year available up until April 2007, PubMed, PsycINFO, Current Contents, Dissertation Abstracts and Sociological Abstracts were searched for original studies in English or French. Reference lists from retrieved studies were also consulted. Studies were included if they reported a self-administered instrument evaluating physicians' perceptions of the decision-making process within specific clinical encounters, contained sufficient description to permit critical appraisal and presented quantitative results based on administering the instrument. Two individuals independently assessed the eligibility of the instruments and abstracted information on their conceptual underpinnings, main evaluation domain, development, format, reliability, validity and responsiveness. They also assessed the quality of the studies that reported on the development of the instruments with a modified version of STARD. Results Out of 3431 records identified and screened for evaluation, 26 potentially relevant instruments were assessed; 11 met the inclusion criteria. Five instruments were published before 1995. Among those published after 1995, five offered a corresponding patient version. Overall, the main evaluation domains were: satisfaction with the clinical encounter (n = 2), mutual understanding between health professional and patient (n = 2), mental workload (n = 1), frustration with the clinical encounter (n = 1), nurse-physician collaboration (n = 1), perceptions of communication competence (n = 2), degree of comfort with a decision (n = 1) and information on medication (n = 1). For most instruments (n = 10), some

  19. Compendium of Quality Rating Systems and Evaluations: The Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tout, Kathryn; Starr, Rebecca; Soli, Margaret; Moodie, Shannon; Kirby, Gretchen; Boller, Kimberly

    2010-01-01

    Quality Rating Systems (QRS) are currently operating, under development, or being piloted in over 25 states or local areas. As the QRS model becomes integrated into the landscape of child care and education service delivery, policy, and the decisions parents make about child care across the United States, there is an increasing need for…

  20. Propagating Water Quality Analysis Uncertainty Into Resource Management Decisions Through Probabilistic Modeling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gronewold, A. D.; Wolpert, R. L.; Reckhow, K. H.

    2007-12-01

    Most probable number (MPN) and colony-forming-unit (CFU) are two estimates of fecal coliform bacteria concentration commonly used as measures of water quality in United States shellfish harvesting waters. The MPN is the maximum likelihood estimate (or MLE) of the true fecal coliform concentration based on counts of non-sterile tubes in serial dilution of a sample aliquot, indicating bacterial metabolic activity. The CFU is the MLE of the true fecal coliform concentration based on the number of bacteria colonies emerging on a growth plate after inoculation from a sample aliquot. Each estimating procedure has intrinsic variability and is subject to additional uncertainty arising from minor variations in experimental protocol. Several versions of each procedure (using different sized aliquots or different numbers of tubes, for example) are in common use, each with its own levels of probabilistic and experimental error and uncertainty. It has been observed empirically that the MPN procedure is more variable than the CFU procedure, and that MPN estimates are somewhat higher on average than CFU estimates, on split samples from the same water bodies. We construct a probabilistic model that provides a clear theoretical explanation for the observed variability in, and discrepancy between, MPN and CFU measurements. We then explore how this variability and uncertainty might propagate into shellfish harvesting area management decisions through a two-phased modeling strategy. First, we apply our probabilistic model in a simulation-based analysis of future water quality standard violation frequencies under alternative land use scenarios, such as those evaluated under guidelines of the total maximum daily load (TMDL) program. Second, we apply our model to water quality data from shellfish harvesting areas which at present are closed (either conditionally or permanently) to shellfishing, to determine if alternative laboratory analysis procedures might have led to different