82,469 results

  • "Getting it": Successful intercultural teaching practicum

    Murray, Sara Rosalind (2017)

    Doctoral thesis
    University of Otago

    New Zealand’s population is becoming increasingly diverse, particularly with new arrivals from the Asian continent. With this, comes the increased need for early childhood education professionals to respond authentically to children and their families from minority ethnicities. One way to do so is to employ a wide range of culturally and ethnically diverse early childhood professionals to help respond to this diversity. However, a significant body of research has suggested that Asian-born early childhood student teachers may have difficulty during initial teacher education (ITE) in Aotearoa New Zealand, especially during the practicum component. Working within an educational context completely at odds with their own personal experience appears to place additional stress upon an already potentially-stressful situation. As a result, student teachers may struggle to meet required ITE learning outcomes for practicum. This research investigates what makes for a successful practicum experience for both Asian-born student teachers and their supervising associate teachers. Using symbolic interactionist theoretical underpinnings, it explores the experiences of three Asian-born early childhood education student teachers and their associate teachers during one of the final practicums of the students’ teaching qualification. Interviews with each of the six participants were conducted prior to, and after, the practicum to determine their changing views of success. In addition, video-stimulated discussions occurred during the practicum to gain a deeper sense of what each participant viewed as successful practice. The findings indicate that themes of mutual respect, professional identity development, student confidence, alignment of understanding around appropriate pedagogical practice, supervision in response to student need, English language competency, and sufficient time, are all seen to contribute to success in practicum. As a result of these findings, a conceptual model of success is proposed. It shows success involves more than simply passing the externally-imposed learning outcomes of the ITE institution. Instead, success is conceptualised as occurring along two continuum; formative and summative, and internally-experienced and externally-demonstrated. With this broader understanding of success in mind, a model of a successful intercultural practicum is proposed which incorporates the key success themes. Subsequent implications for the length of practicum, support structures in place for Asian-born students and associate teachers, practicum assessment processes, and the focus of initial teacher education are discussed.

    View record details
  • Studying documentation requirements for quality assurance in healthcare software development environments following Scrum practices : a thesis submitted for examination for the degree of MPhil in Engineering at Massey University, New Zealand

    Wickramasinghe, Shanuka G (2016)

    Masters thesis
    Massey University

    Over the past decade software development has expanded into almost every sector of business and technology. Currently, Agile software development methods are much preferred over traditional software development methods which rely on heavy documentation. Agile methodologies such as Scrum (the focus of the study) rely on minimal documentation. However, software development organizations who seek accreditation against an internationally recognized quality management system (QMS) standard such as ISO 9001:2008 need to maintain a certain level of documentation to meet the requirements stipulated in the QMS standard. This study was undertaken to answer the following overall research question, in relation to healthcare software development: what would be the minimum level of documentation that would be acceptable for a Health-IT organization pursuing Scrum, if they are to maintain an internationally recognized QMS standard such as ISO 9001:2008? This overarching research question was first investigated through in-depth literature synthesis and subsequently discussed with a panel of experts. An iterative research design utilizing Delphi-like problem solving method was used to gather insights from Scrum practitioners. The study identified 23 documents to have varying levels of usefulness and importance to three categories of Scrum users, specifically Scrum Master, Product Owner, and Development Team. The study further identified the level of conciseness required in each document (to suit each category of Scrum users) and the stage in which each document should be prepared to add maximum value in using documentation. The study identified seven negative experiences Scrum practitioners come across: documents being difficult to understand by nontechnical customers; purpose of documents not being explicit; no follow-up with client’s feedback; excessive re-work on documents; deficiencies in document validation; lack of risk analysis reports and disruptions in software development. The study also identified seven problems practitioners face in creating important documents: lack of skilled document writers; last minute/hasty document preparation; misunderstanding the purpose/intent of Agile; lack of a common documentation standard; perceiving document creation as a burden; poor tooling for documentation and lack of right staff. It is expected that the study would benefit both the academia and the practitioner in gaining greater insights on the issue of documentation in Scrum.

    View record details
  • Recombinant protein immobilisation and display by alginate : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements of the degree of Master of Science in Microbiology at Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand. EMBARGOED until 6 May 2018

    Jameson, Andrew (2016)

    Masters thesis
    Massey University

    Biopolymers are a diverse group of organic materials with important applications in a number of industries. Their ability to adsorb and encapsulate compounds has been widely utilised in both biotechnologies and pharmaceuticals. In the last decade, biopolymers have been given new and enhanced functionality, including the separation and purification of compounds. This field is of increasing relevance as advances in the bacterial cell culture process have improved productivity in the biomanufacturing industry, with the establishment of several bacterial host cell lines and optimised protein production systems. This increase in upstream productivity is leading to bottlenecks in downstream processing as current technology platforms reach their limits of throughput and scalability. While previous studies have generated functionalised protein biopolymers using polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA) biopolyester beads, very few studies have examined the commercially significant biopolymer alginate. Alginate is an exopolysaccharide produced by algae and some bacteria, and is widely utilised in food, pharmaceutical, and biomedical industries because of its stabilising, haemostatic, biocompatible properties and its modifiable structure. In this study, a partially functional alginate-binding recombinant protein was produced, which contained an α-amylase domain from Bacillus licheniformis (BLA) translationally fused to the alginate-binding domain of Pseudomonas aeruginosa AlgX – an alginate acetyltransferase. An Ssp DnaB mini-intein was included between BLA and AlgX to facilitate recovery of BLA, following immobilisation and display on the surface of alginate. However, aberrant activity of the intein caused total cleavage of the recombinant protein between its BLA and AlgX domains before it could be recovered from the protein production system. Additionally, the absence of a key cysteine residue in the alginate-binding domain prevented the formation of a disulfide bond, which is an essential structural element for the folding and functionality of this region. While this study was unable to overcome intein hyperactivity, functional analysis of the BLA domain showed consistent and significant levels of α-amylase activity, leading to a positive outlook for the functionality of a full-length recombinant protein if proper intein activity can be restored and the necessary cysteine included. In this way, alginate could be specifically functionalised with a desired protein, and in turn, alginate beads could be used for the separation and enrichment of target proteins.

    View record details
  • Teenagers' perspectives on the Canterbury earthquakes : an insight into their needs and experiences : a thesis presented in partial fulfillment of the requirements of the degree of Doctor of Clinical Psychology, Massey University, Wellington, New Zealand

    Pine, Nicola Stacey (2015)

    Doctoral thesis
    Massey University

    Natural disasters inflict physical, psychosocial, and economic impacts on individuals and their communities. Although a substantial number of disaster survivors are teenagers (13-19 years), this population group has not been widely investigated, especially regarding their views on their post-disaster needs and received supports. Such information would be important when planning post-disaster supports for current and future disaster-exposed teenagers. The aim of this research therefore, was to explore teenagers’ experiences and retrospective views of their needs, supports, and recovery following the Canterbury, New Zealand earthquakes. The first study surveyed 398 Christchurch secondary school students (aged 16-18 years [male = 169; female = 229]) who had experienced at least one of the major Canterbury earthquakes between September 2010 and June 2011. The survey’s purpose was to obtain an overview of teenagers’ experiences (including their needs and supports received), using both qualitative and quantitative data. Content analysis of this data revealed nine overall themes, including: physical basics, secondary stressors, social support, psychological impact, coping, school, support figures, gender, and recovery. Decile 2 school participants reported a need for physical basics significantly more than deciles 3, 9 and 10, and decile 10 reported a need for social support significantly more than decile 2. With gender, females reported a need for social support significantly more than males, and males reported a need for physical basics significantly more than females. Also, participants reported that their parents/caregivers understood their needs better than their siblings and friends, and their teachers were of greater help to them following the earthquakes compared to other students in their class. The second study extended the enquiry and involved six focus groups, each containing three to six students aged 16-18 years (male = 13; female = 18). Findings from the first study informed these focus group discussions, the aims of which were to gain deeper insights into disaster-exposed teenagers’ experiences, needs, and supports. The discussions were transcribed and analysed via thematic analysis. This analysis revealed seven major areas of importance, including participants’ advice for future planning and six others: individual, family, school, community, national and international. The latter six areas were incorporated into an ecological model combined with a timeline spanning from 2010 till 2013. The model demonstrated a number of notable points - for instance, immediately after the earthquakes many of the participants’ most important needs was to be in the presence of family, to know that family members were safe, and to receive comfort from them; however, three years later, participants’ concern had shifted to the rebuild of their city and their need for not only the pace to quicken, but also for youthfocused areas to be built (e.g., for recreational and leisure activities). The main recommendations from the research include: addressing acute post-disaster psychological responses early on and arranging preventative interventions; incorporating parental mental health support into youth-focused interventions; individually tailoring supports that address differences in gender, living conditions, and damage; encouraging youth to talk but not forcing them; having schools resume structured routines as soon as possible; providing psychoeducation to teachers, parents and guardians regarding typical disaster reactions and coping strategies for youth; and providing teenagers with accurate information. It is also recommended that communities provide or facilitate entertainment for youth post-disaster; that they organise youth-focused volunteer groups; involve youth in rebuild consultations; commence the rebuild of a disaster-struck city as soon as possible, and maintain gains in progress; distribute important information in multiple languages; and try to ensure that media coverage maintains a balance between both positive and negative content. Possible areas for future research include a deeper investigation into the experiences of disaster-exposed international students, the impact of the duration and permanency of relocation, and longitudinal studies into the recovery and adaptation of youth.

    View record details
  • Tree-based models for poverty estimation : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Statistics at Massey University, Manawatu

    Bilton, Penelope A (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    Massey University

    The World Food Programme utilises the technique of poverty mapping for efficient allocation of aid resources, with the objective of achieving the first two United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, elimination of poverty and hunger. A statistical model is used to estimate levels of deprivation across small geographical domains, which are then displayed on a poverty map. Current methodology employs linear mixed modelling of household income, the predictions from which are then converted to various area-level measures of well-being. An alternative technique using tree-based methods is developed in this study. Since poverty mapping is a small area estimation technique, the proposed methodology needs to include auxiliary information to improve estimate precision at low levels, and to take account of complex survey design of the data. Classifcation and regression tree models have, to date, mostly been applied to data assumed to be collected through simple random sampling, with a focus on providing predictions, rather than estimating uncertainty. The standard type of prediction obtained from tree-based models, a \hard" tree estimate, is the class of interest for classification models, or the average response for regression models. A \soft" estimate equates to the posterior probability of being poor in a classification tree model, and in the regression tree model it is represented by the expectation of a function related to the poverty measure of interest. Poverty mapping requires standard errors of prediction as well as point estimates of poverty, but the complex structure of survey data means that estimation of variability must be carried out by resampling. Inherent instability in tree-based models proved a challenge to developing a suitable variance estimation technique, but bootstrap resampling in conjunction with soft tree estimation proved a viable methodology. Simulations showed that the bootstrap based soft tree technique was a valid method for data with simple random sampling structure. This was also the case for clustered data, where the method was extended to utilise the cluster bootstrap and to incorporate cluster effects into predictions. The methodology was further adapted to account for stratification in the data, and applied to generate predictions for a district in Nepal. Tree-based estimates of standard error of prediction for the small areas investigated were compared with published results using the current methodology for poverty estimation. The technique of bootstrap sampling with soft tree estimation has application beyond poverty mapping, and for other types of complex survey data.

    View record details
  • Monitoring acute fatigue in soccer players : School of Sport and Exercise, College of Health, Massey University

    Wivell, Aidan (2016)

    Masters thesis
    Massey University

    Monitoring fatigue is a key consideration when managing the workloads of elite soccer players. A number of potential fatigue markers have been proposed, however, little work has been done in order to assess the correlation between such measures and actual performance.Therefore, the objectives of this study were:(1) to examine the correlation between a range of simple fatigue tests and physical performance; and (2) to develop a model by which readiness to perform could be predicted. In order to do this 14 amateur soccer players completed a range of fatigue tests (countermovement jump, resting heart rate variability, functional soreness, and subjective wellness) and a performance test (3x 30 m repeated sprint test) before and after (24, 48, and 72 hours post) undertaking a soccer simulation protocol (Loughborough Intermittent Shuttle Test; LIST). Following the LIST repeated sprint performance and countermovement jump height, and heart rate variability were reduced, perceived soreness increased, and subjective wellness declined. Of the fatigue measures used, only countermovement jump height was found to be correlated with repeated sprint performance. Three models for predicting performance were developed which differed in their degree of individuality. Individual models were found to have a greater strength than the general model. For practitioners, more work is required to develop individual models, however, predictions made from individual models are likely to be more accurate. Future studies are needed to refine these models in order that they might be used in practice to make decisions about readiness to train and perform.

    View record details
  • Perceptions of performance feedback for an Incredible Years trained teacher : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Educational Psychology at Massey University, Albany, New Zealand

    Govender, Melanie (2016)

    Masters thesis
    Massey University

    Material from Appendix A redacted due to copyright restrictions. Adapted from: Webster-Stratton, C. (2012). Incredible Years Teacher Classroom Management pyramid framework. Retrieved from http://www.incredibleyears.com/wp-content/uploads/800pxteaching-pyramid-good071213.jpg

    View record details
  • The development of L2 Arab writers' proficiency : autonomy, online self-access centres, and advisement : a dissertation presented in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree Doctorate of Education at Massey University, Manawatu, New Zealand

    Denekamp, Carmen (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    Massey University

    Autonomy has been identified as a contributing factor to language development and may affect the use and effectiveness of self-access centres (SACs). Numerous universities in non-English speaking countries have adopted English as the language of instruction with Western academic writing being a main form for assessment. SACs have been funded in many tertiary institutes to promote language proficiency through autonomous learning. The general purpose of writing SACs is to make a wide portfolio of resources available to aid L2 writers with the place of advisors an emerging field. The use of technology at SACs has been extended with some going completely online. This action research study involved the development of an online SAC for second language (L2) academic writers at a university in Qatar. The SAC provided volunteer students with out-of-class help in the form of multiple resources and tools. Additional help could also be accessed in the form of advisement both synchronously and asynchronously. The purpose of this study was to investigate the form of the L2 students’ individual autonomy to determine how this might be fostered and implemented online to develop their academic writing proficiency. The online research SAC was designed to offer aid with grammar, vocabulary, and writing skills and to be responsive to the needs and demands of the students. Interactions between participants and the researcher were available via email, chats, revisable assignments, and forums. Diverse data sources were integrated and analyzed, including questionnaires and interactive dialogues, to understand deeply the cultural dimension and situated perspective of the participating Arab students. The findings revealed that, contrary to expectations, the Arab participants manifested multi-dimensional autonomy. Most preferred to receive help with their writing via 1-1 advisory sessions together with some use of the online resources. Advisory sessions evolved into multiple dialogues whereby reactive autonomy could gradually become proactive. The addition of a structured component to the advisory sessions enhanced autonomy and writing development. The success of the SAC depended on various factors, such as aiding students’ language development and academic writing in a way that capitalized on the participants’ desires and perspectives without imposing Western ideologies. This study contributed to the body of research on developing academic writing proficiency in an under-researched context of Arab learners and with a special emphasis on autonomy, online SACs, and advisement. In doing so it broadened existing paradigms of constructivism and critical theory in the arena of education, and challenged the use of established concepts in the setting of the Arab world.

    View record details
  • The Experience of Living With Bowel Cancer for Maori in Taranaki

    Ruakere, Brian Thomas

    Doctoral thesis
    Auckland University of Technology

    The title of this study is: The experience of living with bowel cancer for Māori in Taranaki. Research methods for this study have been adapted from research approaches collectively known as Kaupapa Māori. The study is also informed by Gadamerian hermeneutic interpretive methodology which unpacks the nature of how we understand and interpret. However, the lens through which understanding is expressed, is from a Māori worldview. Ten Māori patients, diagnosed with bowel cancer were interviewed and their narratives analysed using Gadamerian hermeneutic methodology. The concepts of whakapapa, mauri and tapu were fundamental to the analysis process. Whakapapa in the context of this study examined the stories substance or origin about participant experiences and initial signs that not all was right with their health. The concept of mauri shed light on ways of experiencing bowel cancer that came to reveal how participant stories fell into one of three perspectives: mauri moe; mauri oho and mauri ora. Signs archetypal of mauri moe were evident where participant behaviours remained grounded in responses framed within the notion of mamae and its negative elements of neglect, hurt, pain, anguish, and sorrow. Mauri oho revealed distinct changes in behavioural patterns that signified an upsurge in motivation by participants who were committed to overcome their dilemma and be well again. Mauri ora signified actions that revealed successful outcomes when participants became highly motivated, felt good about their health and were committed to keeping good health. The concept of tapu was utilised to examine the underlying principal issues that determined participant existence in the present. The findings showed that participants had no understanding of bowel cancer before they were diagnosed. Some participants experienced shame and embarrassment at the prospect of having to live the rest of their lives with a stoma. Recognition of tapu through the proper exercise of mana was an important factor in participant recovery. Violation of tapu through the wrongful exercise of mana also manifested as having negative effects on participant recovery. Based on the findings from this study the following recommendations for further research are proposed: a Kaupapa Māori action research study in conjunction with introducing the inflatable colon to the community working with a group of stakeholders to educate Māori about bowel cancer and; a Kaupapa Māori action research study with a group of stakeholders to devise a treatment pathway that integrates the concepts of whakapapa, mauri and tapu when assessing Māori who present to healthcare providers with a suspected prognosis of bowel cancer.  

    View record details
  • Ex-offender Narratives: Revealing the Experience and Success of a Halfway House in Aotearoa New Zealand

    Mortimore, Holly

    Masters thesis
    Auckland University of Technology

    In Aotearoa New Zealand, consultation of the halfway house resident is absent from the literature, omitting the true experience of resettling in this environment upon release from prison. Halfway housing as a solution to the difficulty ex prisoners have attaining accommodation has been historically operated by community groups in Aotearoa New Zealand. Narratives are often dismissed as academic data and are undervalued in Criminology. Narrative in an Aotearoa New Zealand context is particularly relevant as the indigenous population value storytelling as taonga. Kaupapa aligned narrative criminology ensures protection of the participant, while eliciting a rich and empowered narrative. This is particular to the vulnerable residents of a halfway home. While it ensures protection, it also allows them to have ownership of their story and narrative identity. Using this methodology; six residents of a halfway house were interviewed and their narratives documented. From these narratives, it was determined how the experience residing in a halfway house influenced their narrative identity and encouraged their desistance from crime. Initial results found that participant conversion to a religious narrative identity assisted in shame management, while providing the framework for forgiveness and redemption. The halfway house organisation provided opportunity for the participants to earn their redemption, and to practise ‘giving back’ to the community they were once removed from. Finally, the house environment provided them constant prosocial and peer support, which allowed participants to cut ties with their criminal past, share lived experiences and exist without being isolated or judged. This is significant when considering reintegrative policy. It has shown that supported accommodation needs to be more than providing an ex-prisoner with shelter where they are easily supervised. Successful supported accommodation has the potential to reduce the reoffending rate and increase safety in the community.

    View record details
  • The Benefits and Challenges of Planning Poker in Software Development: Comparison Between Theory and Practice

    Zhang, Zhaoyang

    Masters thesis
    Auckland University of Technology

    Planning Poker is a collaborative software effort estimation technique widely used in agile software development methodologies such as Scrum and Extreme Programming (XP). Proponents of Planning Poker claim that the method has the benefits of multi-perspective effort forecasting, promoting group interaction and participation, while avoiding the risk of the “anchoring” cognitive bias, leading to accurate effort forecasting without unrealistic precision. While there is body of empirical research about Planning Poker that investigates the estimation accuracy of the technique in practice, there is not any research that looks at the detail of the implementation of the process of Planning Poker estimation in practice and whether these claimed benefits are realized in practice. This thesis focuses on analyzing the practical execution of Planning Poker in a detailed case study, aiming to identify how the practical process of Planning Poker differs from the theory, and whether the expected benefits are seen or not, and why. The aim of this investigation is to provide a comprehensive conceptualization of Planning Poker estimation in practice, as well as understanding of the difference between practice and theory. In addition, this study also expects to deepen an understanding of the activities of the Planning Poker technique that contribute to the observed benefits and challenges. This will be helpful for software estimators to optimize execution of the Planning Poker technique to maximize the claimed and observed benefits it can provide. The approach to this investigation is based on analyzing video and audio recordings of two Planning Poker sessions undertaken by a team in a case organization. This is supplemented by field notes and photographs related to the Planning Poker meetings. The study starts with an in-depth literature review to explore the theory related to some special behaviors in practical Planning Poker estimation meetings. Both Planning Poker meetings are held by the same development team for the same software project, and conducted in two different development iterations as part of Sprint planning using Scrum as their software development approach. This thesis explores the differences between the process inferred from analyzing the meetings and theory pf Planning Poker. The differences between both meetings also is explored. This thesis also explores whether those claimed benefits in literatures are achieved in practical Planning Poker estimation meetings, and discusses some of the challenges observed in both meetings. The findings of the research includes identification of several different estimation process patterns, such as a gradual changing of the benefit of promoting group interaction is achieved well in practice, whereas avoidance of the “anchoring” effect and promoting individual participation, are largely not achieved. In addition, this thesis identifies some of the practical challenges in implementing Planning Poker, for example domination of the discussion by a single practitioner.

    View record details
  • Smartphone-based Real-time Patient Monitoring and Decision Support System

    Moqeem, Aasia

    Masters thesis
    Auckland University of Technology

    Patient monitoring systems have evolved over the past decade as an important first-line monitoring and warning tool. The healthcare delivery is moderately shifting from the traditional manual process to computer-based electronic healthcare system, supported by advanced tools and technologies. Mobile healthcare applications are now increasingly integrating into the healthcare mainstream to provide mobility with patient’s electronic health record. However, the use of mobile raises the challenge of accuracy, stability, security and dependency of such applications in clinical care settings. In particular, lack of clinician engagement, poor user experience, and no clinical decision support are posing some serious issues on the acceptability of smartphone applications in clinical settings. The main aim of this research project was to develop a vital signs monitoring and decision support application for the clinician-as-a-user. An Android-based smartphone application has been developed to monitor vital signs on a mobile device in real-time and to provide rich decision support to the clinicians. The application is fully integrated with wireless medical devices for real-time vital signs monitoring and decision support backed by the six screens (6S) user experience framework for the smartphone applications in healthcare settings. The unique features and contributions that this research project provides are: (1) The ability to access, share, monitor, contact and stay connected with patient’s data anywhere; (2) Hospital-grade medical device connectivity using the standard Bluetooth protocol; (3) Rich clinical decision support in real-time based on the patient’s recent vital signs (health data); (4) The ‘6S’ framework developed for clinician-centered mobile user experience by adapting the international standards and protocols. The proposed application has been evaluated using the best-practice guidelines for a successful mobile healthcare application. The criteria include review of the market available applications, literature review of best-practice guidelines, user engagement, privacy and security and standard design architecture for medical device integration. The proposed application demonstrates the easy to use screens and unique functionality including; patient list with search options, real-time viewing of vital signs, integrated medical devices, structured data entry, historic data, evidence-based knowledgebase search, clinical notes and clinical decision support via clinical risk assessments tools, scales and scores. The proposed smartphone-based clinical decision support application could be seen as a potential standard/ best-practice tool that will help the clinicians to deliver better and timely outcomes. The functional design and implementation required rigorous and systematic workflow methodologies to be acceptable in the clinical care settings. The patient-orientated workflow and the available automated clinical assessment tools and calculators can assist researchers with collecting data that can help clinicians in future decision making.

    View record details
  • Theory & Observation of High-Order Radio Recombination Lines

    Alexander, Jordan

    Doctoral thesis
    Auckland University of Technology

    This dissertation resolves a mystery in cosmic radio recombination line observations reported by Bell et al. (2000). This is accomplished by rigorously “reverse-engineering” the novel data processing technique they used and through independent observations of high-order RRLs (radio recombination lines) of cosmic origin to test the theory of Stark broadening in plasmas. The findings of this dissertation are summarized in two papers published during the dissertation and reproduced in Chapter 4. I discovered that the apparent hydrogen RRL narrowing first reported by Bell et al. is an artifact of their data processing. I accomplished this by creating a theoretical model of the multiple FS (frequency shifting) technique, originally developed by Bell (1997), which I then implemented as a computer simulation. This technique copies a spectral line bandpass, shifts it in frequency by an offset, and adds it to the unshifted bandpass. The output of this process is then fed back to itself multiple times. I then co-created a theoretical model of the Orion nebula which includes mechanisms of spectral line broadening and non-equilibrium thermodynamics effects. This model is used to numerically solve the radiative transfer problem to simulate hydrogen RRLs. These simulated lines are then processed through the multiple FS model, the results of which are called “processed” lines. Finally, I used Monte Carlo simulation to estimate how noise influences the processed line widths and amplitudes. From these models and simulations, I discovered that multiple FS does not preserve broadening when the original line width is greater than the FS-offset. In this case, I find the processed results manifest the narrowing reported by Bell et al., by reducing broad spectral wings characteristic of Stark broadened RRLs. I also discovered that the S/N of processed lines reduces weakly with the number of overlaps as a result of adding dependent samples. This means the S/N of processed lines as a function of ∆n (transition-order), at fixed frequency, decreases faster than for unprocessed lines, such that a given statistical insignificance level is reached more quickly. Given this analysis, I argue Bell et al.’s ∆n > 11 lines are artifacts of their technique. I conclude that their reported findings, upon re-examination of their novel data processing technique, do not indicate a need to change Stark broadening theory. I present original observations of high-order RRLs from the Orion nebula to test the theory of Stark broadening in cosmic plasmas. I use a wide 1 GHz bandpass centered at 6 GHz to significantly improve the accuracy of measurements by stacking up to eleven hydrogen RRLs of the same ∆n and find no evidence of spectral line narrowing. I show that all statistically significant data from my observations and four-sets of previous observations of high-order hydrogen RRLs (Smirnov et al., 1984; Bell et al., 2011) are in agreement and demonstrate how Stark broadening theory is consistent with these observations. I find that Lockman and Brown (1975)’s RRL model of the Orion nebula over a large range of radio frequencies and ∆n ≤ 2 requires the addition of small-scale density inhomogeneities (clumps) and turbulence to adequately predict my observed hydrogen RRLs for ∆n ≤ 5. I demonstrate that the power law predicted by electron-impact Stark broadening theory is consistent with the five-sets of high-order hydrogen RRLs analyzed here. My data do not allow distinguishing between two approaches to the cut-off parameters (nearest neighbor versus Debye radius) when predicting line broadening from electron impacts. Specifically, the data does not allow an unambiguous choice between the theoretical results of Griem (1967); Gee et al. (1976) and Watson (2006); Peach (2015). This ambiguity arises from small differences in the radiative transfer nebula model parameters. It is currently impossible to independently determine turbulent velocities and other physical & geometric parameters of the Orion nebula with enough accuracy to choose between the two predications of electron-impact broadening theory. This situation represents an ill-posed inverse problem that is currently unsolvable (Brown et al., 1978). However, I am able to show that Peach’s model for electron-plus-proton impacts significantly deviates from the Lorentz-width trend in my data.

    View record details
  • Analysing rain garden infiltration efficiency using MOUSE Model

    Li, H.; De Costa, Gregory (2017-05-10T05:37:30Z)

    Conference paper
    Unitec

    A MOUSE model was developed to simulate rain garden and calculate the annual stormwater runoff volume. The key parameter settings of the simulation model are strictly built on Auckland Regional Council Technical Publications No.10 and adapted the typical annual rainfall data acquired from Auckland City Council. The simulation result demonstrates the hydrological relationship between rain garden infiltration efficiency and different rain garden surface areas (15m2, 20 m2, 24 m2, 30 m2, 35 m2, 40 m2, 45 m2)

    View record details
  • A physical-aware task migration algorithm for dynamic thermal management of SMT multi-core processors

    Madipour, Farhad (2017-05-10T05:37:38Z)

    Conference paper
    Unitec

    This paper presents a task migration algorithm for dynamic thermal management of SMT multi-core processors. The unique features of this algorithm include: 1) considering SMT capability of the processors for task scheduling, 2) using adaptive task migration threshold, and 3) considering cores physical features. This algorithm is evaluated on a commercial SMT quad-core processor. The experimental results indicate that our technique can significantly decrease the average and peak temperature compared to Linux standard scheduler, and two well-known thermal management techniques.

    View record details
  • Can we improve participation in university course surveys using mobile tools? : a practical experiment

    Parsons, D.; Rees, M. (2017-05-10T05:37:14Z)

    Conference paper
    Unitec

    Student course surveys provide an important feedback mechanism for universities. However the quality of this feedback depends largely on the level of participation. New technologies have enabled course surveys to evolve from written paper-based tools to web-based and mobile channels, but using these channels does not necessarily lead to better response rates. This paper discusses the results of a survey designed and administered at Massey University, New Zealand, to gain insights into students’ attitudes towards course surveys and factors that might impact on their participation. The survey also explored the potential interest in mobile channels for providing course feedback. The responses to this survey informed a pilot study that tested a mobile course survey tool. The results of our experiment suggest that, whilst a mobile channel may lead to improved participation, more significant results would depend on its integration into a broader set of strategies and tools for student engagement.

    View record details
  • Evaluation of statistical text normalisation techniques for Twitter

    Sosamphan, P.; Liesaputra, Veronica; Yongchareon, Dr. Sira; Mohaghegh, Dr Mahsa (2017-05-10T05:37:34Z)

    Conference paper
    Unitec

    One of the major challenges in the era of big data use is how to ‘clean’ the vast amount of data, particularly from micro-blog websites like Twitter. Twitter messages, called tweets, are commonly written in ill-forms, including abbreviations, repeated characters, and misspelled words. These ‘noisy tweets’ require text normalisation techniques to detect and convert them into more accurate English sentences. There are several existing techniques proposed to solve these issues, however each technique possess some limitations and therefore cannot achieve good overall results. This paper aims to evaluate individual existing statistical normalisation methods and their possible combinations in order to find the best combination that can efficiently clean noisy tweets at the character-level, which contains abbreviations, repeated letters and misspelled words. Tested on our Twitter sample dataset, the best combination can achieve 88% accuracy in the Bilingual Evaluation Understudy (BLEU) score and 7% Word Error Rate (WER) score, both of which are considered better than the baseline model.

    View record details
  • Geotechnical aspects of the 2016 Kaikōura Earthquake on the South Island of New Zealand.

    Stringer ME; Bastin S; McGann C; Cappellaro C; El Kortbawi M; McMahon R; Wotherspoon L; Green R; Aricheta J; Davis R; McGlynn L; Hargraves S; Van Ballegooy S; Cubrinovski M; Bradley B; Bellagamba X; Foster K; Lai C; Ashfield D; Baki A; Zekkos A; Lee R; Ntritsos N (2017)

    Journal article
    University of Canterbury Library

    The magnitude Mw7.8 ‘Kaikōura’ earthquake occurred shortly after midnight on 14 November 2016. This paper presents an overview of the geotechnical impacts on the South Island of New Zealand recorded during the postevent reconnaissance. Despite the large moment magnitude of this earthquake, relatively little liquefaction was observed across the South Island, with the only severe manifestation occurring in the young, loose alluvial deposits in the floodplains of the Wairau and Opaoa Rivers near Blenheim. The spatial extent and volume of liquefaction ejecta across South Island is significantly less than that observed in Christchurch during the 2010-2011 Canterbury Earthquake Sequence, and the impact of its occurrence to the built environment was largely negligible on account of the severe manifestations occurring away from the areas of major development. Large localised lateral displacements occurred in Kaikōura around Lyell Creek. The soft fine-grained material in the upper portions of the soil profile and the free face at the creek channel were responsible for the accumulation of displacement during the ground shaking. These movements had severely impacted the houses which were built close (within the zone of large displacement) to Lyell Creek. The wastewater treatment facility located just north of Kaikōura also suffered tears in the liners of the oxidation ponds and distortions in the aeration system due to ground movements. Ground failures on the Amuri and Emu Plains (within the Waiau Valley) were small considering the large peak accelerations (in excess of 1g) experienced in the area. Minor to moderate lateral spreading and ejecta was observed at some bridge crossings in the area. However, most of the structural damage sustained by the bridges was a result of the inertial loading, and the damage resulting from geotechnical issues were secondary.

    View record details
  • The Frequency and Type of Talk in Three New Zealand Families at Dinnertime

    Indugula, Pragnya (2017)

    Masters thesis
    University of Canterbury Library

    Language is an important aspect of communication and a parent is a child’s first teacher. The more variety of talk the parents use, the more opportunities children will get to imitate that language and therefore widen their vocabulary. This study was based on the work of Hart and Risley (1995). The purpose was to observe the frequency and type of talk, the number of encouragements and discouragements, and the non-verbal interactions that occurred at the homes of dinnertime in three New Zealand middle and high income Families. Each family consisted of two adults and two children aged between 3 and 6 years. Data was collected via videotape. The results indicate that the higher income families had a higher frequency of talk and used more variety of talk. Contradictory to previous studies, the middle income family used more encouragements than discouragements with their children while the higher income families used more discouragements to encouragements. The middle income family also used the lowest number of non-verbal interactions. There was little exploratory talk included in the dinnertime conversations between family members. An implication of these findings is that, in order for children to extend their vocabulary, families could use more exploratory talk so that this could occur.

    View record details
  • The Power of Robot Groups with a Focus on Persuasive and Linguistic Cues

    Brandstetter, Jürgen (2017)

    Doctoral thesis
    University of Canterbury Library

    Today the HRI community generates a lot of knowledge on how one robot affects one human, and how one robot affects multiple human listeners. Much less knowledge is available on how robots affect the human language and how this language change can affect human attitudes and behaviours. This language effect is of particular interest for when we get into a situation where a major part of the human population has robots, as we are now experiencing with the ubiquity of smartphones. In this case, the questions are: What happens if all robots were to use the same words? For example, when they all use the same source as their dictionary. Will robots be able to affect the word choices of the human population, and what are the implications of connotation-laden vocabulary? Even more interesting, will this word choice affect the attitudes and behaviours of the human population? Through all those questions a central question for this thesis emerged: "Are Robots able to influence a group of people via the usage of language?" To find out if this might be possible, we developed three connected experiments. In the first, the effect of peer pressure on humans created by robots is explored, focusing on how this peer pressure affects the language of a person. To see if and how this influence of robots works, the effect of the robots was compared against that of human actors. The results of the ex- periment showed that the actors could indeed influence the participants as predicted, however, no such influence could be shown by the robots. It was concluded that the reason the robots did not affect the humans was that the participants did not feel that they belonged to the robots group. In the second experiment, a robot and human group setting was created. In this experiment, the robot tried to influence the human language. Important here to mention is that the experiment measured if the language of participants was affected by the robot influence, even after the interaction and without any robot in the room. It was also mea- sured if the word chosen by the robot had an influence on how a person would perceive the discussed object. The outcome of the experiment was successful, and showed that the group building worked and the robot was able to affect the human language, even after the interaction was over. It further showed that robots were able to affect the hu- mans attitude toward objects simply by using positive or negative connoted synonyms for a particular object. In the third and last experiment, the question was: Can many robots affect the language of a whole human population? To answer this, different parameters were measured: How many humans need robots so that the robots could manipulate the whole human populations language? And does it matter which persons in the human population will get a robot - whether it be a person who is very well connected or a person who is poorly connected, for example? Since we are currently not in a time where a huge number of people actually have robots, a simulation was created. The outcome of the simulation was that on average only 11% of the human population needed robots to affect the language of 95% of the human population. Finally, to further deepen the knowledge on how simple language change can affect human attitude and behaviour a literature review is added. This review focuses particularly on persuasion via language, which includes effects like gender neutral versus non-gender neutral language. The conclusion of this thesis is that in certain situations, a group of robots is able to affect the language, and in turn the behavioural responses, of the majority of the human population.

    View record details