Research

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  • Are Users Up to Speed? The Demand Side of Sustainable Broadband
    Are Users Up to Speed? The Demand Side of Sustainable Broadband
    Presentation to the Green ICT: Learning to be Sustainable with Computers and Broadband Workshop, Canberra, November 2008., Presentation to the Green ICT: Learning to be Sustainable with Computers and Broadband Workshop, Canberra, November 2008.
    Are we on the right path to honoring diversity in early education? Lessons learned from Canada
    Are we on the right path to honoring diversity in early education? Lessons learned from Canada
    Online version of a conference paper: Bernhard, J. K. (2002). Are we on the right path to honoring diversity in early education? Lessons learned from Canada.Presented to the National Association for Education of Young Children, New York, November, 2002.
    Argumentation Mapping in Collaborative Spatial Decision Making
    Argumentation Mapping in Collaborative Spatial Decision Making
    Collaboration and decision-making of humans usually entails logical reasoning that is expressed through discussions and individual arguments. Where collaborative work uses geo-spatial information and where decision-making has a spatial connotation, argumentation will include geographical references. Argumentation maps have been developed to support geographically referenced discussions and provide a visual access to debates in domains such as urban planning. The concept of argumentation maps provides for explicit links between arguments and the geographic objects they refer to. These geo-argumentative relations do not only allow for cartographic representation of arguments, but also support the querying of both, space and discussion. Combinations of spatial queries and retrieval of linked arguments provide a powerful way of analyzing and summarizing the current state of a debate. In this chapter, we provide an overview of the original argumentation model and we discuss related research and application development. We also link argumentation mapping to related concepts in geographic visualization, spatial decision support systems, and public participation GIS under the umbrella of collaborative GIS.
    Argumentation Maps - GIS-based Discussion Support for Online Planning
    Argumentation Maps - GIS-based Discussion Support for Online Planning
    Information technology plays a growing role in planning procedures. A procedure step which has not been supported by specific computer tools up to now, is asynchronous discussions. Such discussions can occur in public participation as well as between planners during plan design. In this paper I introduce argumentation models as a way of structuring debates, and review existing tools for recording argumentation. A limited number of tools support design-related or map-related discussions. Their short-comings for analyzing geographically referenced arguments are discussed. Finally, the concept of `argumentation maps' is described, which combine the strengths of rigorous argumentation modeling and detailed geographic location to support map-based discussions in on-line planning.
    Artificial Neural Network Modeling of High Arctic Phytomass Using Synthetic Aperture Radar and Multispectral Data
    Artificial Neural Network Modeling of High Arctic Phytomass Using Synthetic Aperture Radar and Multispectral Data
    Vegetation in the Arctic is often sparse, spatially heterogeneous, and difficult to model. Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) has shown some promise in above-ground phytomass estimation at sub-arctic latitudes, but the utility of this type of data is not known in the context of the unique environments of the Canadian High Arctic. In this paper, Artificial Neural Networks (ANNs) were created to model the relationship between variables derived from high resolution multi-incidence angle RADARSAT-2 SAR data and optically-derived (GeoEye-1) Soil Adjusted Vegetation Index (SAVI) values. The modeled SAVI values (i.e., from SAR variables) were then used to create maps of above-ground phytomass across the study area. SAVI model results for individual ecological classes of polar semi-desert, mesic heath, wet sedge, and felsenmeer were reasonable, with r2 values of 0.43, 0.43, 0.30, and 0.59, respectively. When the outputs of these models were combined to analyze the relationship between the model output and SAVI as a group, the r2 value was 0.60, with an 8% normalized root mean square error (% of the total range of phytomass values), a positive indicator of a relationship. The above-ground phytomass model also resulted in a very strong relationship (r2 = 0.87) between SAR-modeled and field-measured phytomass. A positive relationship was also found between optically derived SAVI values and field measured phytomass (r2 = 0.79). These relationships demonstrate the utility of SAR data, compared to using optical data alone, for modeling above-ground phytomass in a high arctic environment possessing relatively low levels of vegetation., Collingwood, A., Treitz, P., Charbonneau, F., & Atkinson, D. M. (2014). Artificial neural network modeling of high arctic phytomass using synthetic aperture radar and multispectral data. Remote Sensing, 6(3), 2134-2153. doi:10.3390/rs6032134
    Assessing Mathematical Models of Influenza Infections Using Features of the Immune Response
    Assessing Mathematical Models of Influenza Infections Using Features of the Immune Response
    Citation: Dobrovolny HM, Reddy MB, Kamal MA, Rayner CR, Beauchemin CAA (2013) Assessing Mathematical Models of Influenza Infections Using Features of the Immune Response. PLoS ONE 8(2): e57088. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0057088 Copyright: © 2013 Dobrovolny et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
    Assessing depression symptoms in those with insomnia: An examination of the Beck Depression Inventory Second Edition (BDI-II)
    Assessing depression symptoms in those with insomnia: An examination of the Beck Depression Inventory Second Edition (BDI-II)
    Background Due to concerns about overlapping symptomatology between medical conditions and depression, the validity of the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI-II) has been assessed in various medical populations. Although Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) and Primary Insomnia (PI) share some daytime symptoms, the BDI-II has not been evaluated for use with insomnia patients. Method Participants (N = 140) were screened for the presence of insomnia using the Duke Structured Clinical Interview for Sleep Disorders (DSISD), and evaluated for diagnosis of MDD using the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV-TR (SCID). Participants’ mean BDI-II item responses were compared across two groups [insomnia with or without MDD) using multivariate analysis of variance (MANOVA), and the accuracy rates of suggested clinical cutoffs for the BDI-II were evaluated using a Receiver Operating Characteristic (ROC) curve analysis. Results The insomnia with depression group had significantly higher scores on several items; however, the groups did not differ on insomnia, fatigue, concentration problems, irritability, libido, increased appetite, and thoughts relating to suicide, self-criticism and punishment items. The ROC curve analysis revealed moderate accuracy for the BDI-II’s identification of depression in those with insomnia. The suggested BDI cutoff of ≥ 17 had 81% sensitivity and 79% specificity. Use of the mild cutoff for depression (≥14) had high sensitivity (91%) but poor specificity (66%). Conclusion Several items on the BDI-II might reflect sleep disturbance symptoms rather than depression per se. The recommended BDI-II cutoffs in this population have some support but a lower cutoff could result in an overclassification of depression in insomnia patients, a documented problem in the clinical literature. Understanding which items discriminate insomnia patients without depression may help address this nosological issue., J Psychiatr Res. 2009 February; 43(5): 576–582. doi: 10.1016/j.jpsychires.2008.09.002.
    Assessing relative contributions of PAHs to soot mass by reversible heterogeneous nucleation and condensation
    Assessing relative contributions of PAHs to soot mass by reversible heterogeneous nucleation and condensation
    Given the recent EURO 6 regulations, which include limits on particle number density (and hence size) for soot emissions from land vehicles, soot models must be capable of accurately predicting soot particle sizes. Previous modeling work has demonstrated the importance of the relative strengths of nucleation and condensation in predicting soot primary particle size. Due to this importance, a fundamental reversible model for nucleation and condensation, called the reversible PAH clustering (RPC) model, was developed in previous work through the use of statistical mechanics and the results from several recent works. In the present work, the RPC model is enhanced to include multiple nucleation (or dimerization) events from 6 different PAH size groups, resulting in 21 unique dimer pairs. In addition, a soot PAH tracking model is developed to track the amount of each PAH size group within soot particles. The addition of this model resulted in reduced computation times and the ability to investigate PAH-PAH reactions within soot particles. The results of the enhanced RPC model demonstrate that smaller PAHs are most important for the nucleation process, while small and large PAHs are important for the condensation process. These results are shown to be due to the relatively lower reversibility of condensation versus the nucleation process. These findings are discussed in light of recent experimental results in the literature and are shown to be well supported. Keywords: reversibility, PAH nucleation, PAH condensation, laminar diffusion flame, soot model, Eaves, N. A., Dworkin, S. B. and Thomson, M. J. (2017). Assessing relative contributions of PAHs to soot mass by reversible heterogeneous nucleation and condensation. Proceedings of the Combustion Institute, 36 (1), 935-945. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.proci.2016.06.051
    Assessing semester-long student team design reports in large classes to provide individual student grades.
    Assessing semester-long student team design reports in large classes to provide individual student grades.
    This paper presents a method and tool to achieve a trade-off between workload on assessors of semester-long team-based design projects in large classes, with the need for fair and comprehensive assessments of each student individually. Students “book time” throughout the semester, recording their level of input into each project element. They each provide totals for time spent on each element of their final reports. The instructor assesses each design report as if one person wrote it. These data are combined into a single rubric/spreadsheet. The rubric scales report assessments to accommodate differences in team size, and generates a unique grade for each student in a team. Examples are given in the paper, as are details from the implementation of the method in a Fall 2015 introductory design course. There is anecdotal evidence that the method works, but there is always room for improvement. Several ideas for future modifications to method are discussed. All spreadsheets, documentation, and examples are freely available via the Web. Links are provided. Keywords: engineering design, teamwork, project, assessment, individual grading., Salustri, F. A., & Neumann, W. P. (2016). Assessing semester-long student team design reports in large classes to provide individual student grades. In Proceedings 2016 Canadian Engineering Education Association (CEEA16) Conference (Paper 042). Dalhousie University. June 19-22, 2016
    Assessing sustainable development across Moldova using household and property composition indicators
    Assessing sustainable development across Moldova using household and property composition indicators
    Societies are committing themselves to sustainable development by attempting to improve environmental quality, social equity, and economic welfare. As such, there continues a plea for holistic development assessment across scales; however there remains no ideal technique for achieving sustainability on neither regional nor local scale. This paper approaches this problem by constructing a multi-metric assessment system for evaluating development patterns across the Republic of Moldova. The objectives of this study were: (1) to produce a local multi-metric index that captures the three major dimensions of sustainable development for Moldova; (2) to quantitatively evaluate the interrelatedness of sub-metrics used for creating the local composite index of sustainable development; and (3) to visualize and interpret spatial patterns of sustainable development across Moldova. A local sustainable development index (LSDI) was produced using household and property composition indicators from a 2005 demographic and health survey for the Republic of Moldova. Total sample size and aggregated spatial reference was 11,066 households and 399 geographic locations, respectively. The LSDI used a 15 submetric optimum, equal weighting, 1e5 ordinal scale standardization, and additive construction. Spearman's rank correlation coefficient analysis was used to evaluate sub-metric quantitative relationships, and local Moran's I-test to interpret geographic patterns of sustainable development. Results revealed that a wealth sub-index had greatest collinearity with other sub-metrics. Geographically, Moldova's improved sustainability levels were found in large urban areas, suggesting needed prioritization of development resources to the hinterland. For regional sustainable development assessments, this approach provides the transferability to other locally referenced datasets throughout the world., Shaker, R. R., & Sirodoev, I. G. (2016). Assessing sustainable development across Moldova using household and property composition indicators. Habitat International, 55, 192-204. doi:10.1016/j.habitatint.2016.03.005
    Assessment of Opto-mechanical Behavior of Biological Samples by Interferometry
    Assessment of Opto-mechanical Behavior of Biological Samples by Interferometry
    Online version of a Conference paper originally published as: Assessment of opto-mechanical behavior of biological samples by interferometry, Behrouz Soroushian, William M. Whelan, Michael C. Kolios (2009) In Photons Plus Ultrasound: Imaging and Sensing 2009, edited by Alexander A. Oraevsky, Lihong V. Wang, Proc. of SPIE Vol. 7177, 71771X Publisher URL: http://spie.org/x648.html?product_id=809094
    Assessment of Socio-culturally Diverse Students: Problems in Special Educational Theory and Implications for Practice
    Assessment of Socio-culturally Diverse Students: Problems in Special Educational Theory and Implications for Practice
    Online version of an article originally published as: Bernhard, J. K. (1990). Assessment of socio-culturally diverse students: Problems in special educational theory: Implications for practice. International Journal of Dynamic Assessment and Instruction, 1(2): 86-104.