1,228 results for Masters, 2014

  • Exploring noise sensitivity: cardiac correlates of noise sensitivity and the auditory evoked orienting response

    Mulgrew, Joseph (2014-05-12)

    Masters thesis
    Auckland University of Technology

    A growing body of evidence suggests Noise Sensitivity (NS) moderates the relationship between noise exposure and stress-related disease. As NS is pronounced within several clinical disorders, its biological mechanisms are of clinical and epidemiological import. Central Neurovisceral Integrative System (NIS, Thayer & Brosschot, 2005) concepts were drawn from to argue that autonomic balance (AB) provides an influential biological mechanism underlying NS and, additionally, that AB and NS influence the Auditory Evoked Orientation Response (AEOR). Baseline Heart Rate Variability (HRV) and NS, as measured by the NS Questionnaire (Schütte, Marks, Wenning, & Griefahn, 2007), were collected from 103 Auckland University of Technology staff and students and were used to analyse the neurovisceral correlates of NS. Furthermore, 60 participants went on to provide cardiac data recorded during and post exposure to auditory stimuli of varying valence, which were used to analyse the influence of autonomic balance and NS on the AEOR. The results of the study provide some limited support for both propositions. Findings are discussed with reference to AB, total regulatory capacity, emotion, and orientating. Although questions are left unanswered, future research directions are postulated that could culminate in the development of both screening and treatment protocols with pronounced clinical applications.

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  • Lesbian, gay and bisexual clients’ experiences of discussing sexual identity in therapy

    Tsai, Sandy (2014-05-19)

    Masters thesis
    Auckland University of Technology

    The current study explores lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) individuals’ experiences of discussing sexual identity in therapy. Current literature indicate that the absence of sexual identity issues being identified and discussed could be a significant barrier to effective therapy with LGB clients. However, little research has explored how sexual identity is conceptualized in therapy by LGB clients and their therapists, and how this influences their therapeutic outcomes. Using interpretative phenomenological analysis (IPA), LGB clients’ experiences of discussing sexual identity in therapy was investigated. Results clustered into three overarching themes: 1. Sexual identity as self in the making; 2. Sexual identity as a barrier; and 3. Sexual identity as increased awareness of oppression. Discussion of sexual identity is important for LGB clients in therapy, regardless of whether it is the main focus of their presenting issues. These discussions help them explore their sexual identity formation processes, which result in a stronger sense of identity due to a better understanding of sexual identity as an aspect of themselves. LGB clients who lack such opportunities to discuss sexual identity in therapy experience heteronormative assumptions and biases from their therapists, which increased their awareness of themselves as individuals of sexual minority and empathy towards others under oppression. The current study concludes that therapists should remain open-minded and explorative when helping LGB clients discuss their sexual identities in therapy, but always in context to their presenting issues so that conceptualizations and sense-making of sexual identity is centred in the clients’ subjective experiences

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  • Gold Rush and Gold Mining: A Technological Analysis Of Gabriel's Gully and the Blue Spur, 1861-1891

    MacArthur, Nicol Allan (2014)

    Masters thesis
    University of Otago

    Philip Ross May stated in 1980 that well-informed studies of the technology of gold rushes and gold mining were long overdue but very little has been added to the historiography since then. As a result, various misconceptions and misunderstandings have entered into the New Zealand and wider gold rush historiography. A conflation of gold rushing with gold mining is sometimes evident and another misconception entrenches corporate structure with the level of capitalisation and mixes the mining of alluvial and quartz reef gold. On May’s lines, this thesis argues that technology lies at the heart of all gold rushes and their gold mining, and seeks simply to demonstrate that the technology of gold rushes was different from the technology of gold mining. The thesis first completes a historical survey of gold rushes from sixteenth century Spanish America until Victoria in the 1850s. It then then closely evaluates the technology of the Gabriel's Gully gold rush and its extension to mining the Blue Spur deposit, both as local history and also to deepen the findings of the global review. All gold rushes were found to use a common suite of hand tools and simple manual methods of low productivity. This manual simplicity was diagnostic as was a slow- down in gold output and modifications in methods as the rich easy gold became exhausted. To continue required either hydraulic or mechanical methods, or large coordinated labour forces, along with capital expenditure. This signified mining, which typically comprised ground sluicing, hydraulicking, deep leading, or river mining. Unlike other rushes, the Gabriel's Gully rush used hydraulic energy in long toms and box sluices, as well as manual cradling, to wash the paydirt. Whether due to this or not, a remarkable new finding is that in its first twenty-one months, the Tuapeka district produced more gold than the first twenty-one months of the Californian rush. Regarding mining, Blue Spur proved to be an extremely large orebody, much of it heavily cemented and capable of high gold contents. Over its long fifty-year life, as different zones were reached, alluvial, quarrying, and underground mining and stamp milling technologies were applied, and culminated in hydraulicking and the innovative hydraulic elevating developed in Gabriel's Gully. However, regardless of the mining technology in use, there was no structural change in the Blue Spur mining parties for twenty years, although each new technology required higher capitalisation. This supports Hearn’s work on the Tinkers goldfield. This technological study has perhaps filled a gap in the local historiography, and historians of the Otago gold rushes and gold mining may be encouraged to pursue other lines of enquiry with the role of technology included in their perspective. This leads to a wider point that ongoing mining histories in New Zealand could look to the characteristics of local deposits and their required technology before generalising across different types of gold deposit nationally. The work shows also that Otago had a significant role in the global innovations in alluvial mining technology of the nineteenth century.

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  • Using BIM to calculate accurate building material quantities for early design phase Life Cycle Assessment

    Berg, Brian (2014)

    Masters thesis
    Victoria University of Wellington

    This research simplifies the calculation of the Initial Embodied Energy (iEE) for commercial office buildings. The result is the improved integration of Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) assessments of building materials into the early stages of the building design process (sketch design). This maximises the effectiveness of implementing design solutions to lower a building’s environmental impact. This thesis research proposes that building Information Models (BIM) will make calculating building material quantities easier, to simplify LCA calculations, all to improve their integration into existing sketch design phase practices, and building design decisions. This is achieved by developing a methodology for using BIM LCA tools to calculate highly detailed material quantities from a simple BIM model of sketch design phase building information. This is methodology is called an Initial Embodied Energy Building Information Model Life Cycle Assessment Building Performance Sketch (iEE BIM LCA BPS). Using this methodology calculates iEE results that are accurate, and represent a sufficient proportion (complete) of a building’s total iEE consumption, making them useful for iEE decision-making. iEE is one example of a LCA-based indicator that was used to test, and prove the feasibility of the iEE BIM LCA BPS methodology. Proving this, the research method tests the accuracy that a BIM model can calculate case study building’s building material quantities. This included developing; a methodology for how to use the BIM tool Revit to calculate iEE; a functional definition of an iEE BIM LCA BPS based on the environmental impact, and sketch design decisions effecting building materials, and elements; and an EE simulation calibration accuracy assessment methodology, complete with a function definition of the accuracy required of an iEE simulation to ensure it’s useful for sketch design decision-making. Two main tests were conducted as part of proving the iEE BIM LCA BPS’ feasibility. Test one assessed and proved that the iEE BIM LCA BPS model based on sketch design information does represent a sufficient proportion (complete) of a building’s total iEE consumption, so that are useful for iEE decision-making. This was tested by comparing the building material quantities from a SOQ (SOQ) produced to a sketch design level of detail (truth model 3), to an as-built level of detail, defined as current iEE best practices (truth model 1). Subsequent to proving that the iEE BIM LCA BPS is sufficiently complete, test two assessed if a BIM model and tool could calculate building material quantities accurately compared to truth model 3. The outcome was answering the research question of, how detailed does a BIM model need to be to calculate accurate building material quantities for a building material LCA (LCA) assessment? The inference of this thesis research is a methodology for using BIM models to calculate the iEE of New Zealand commercial office buildings in the early phases of the design process. The outcome was that a building design team’s current level of sketch design phase information is sufficiently detailed for sketch design phase iEE assessment. This means, that iEE and other LCA-based assessment indicators can be integrated into a design team’s existing design process, practices, and decisions, with no restructuring required.

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  • Making kai in Godzone : New Zealand food programming, nostalgia and national identity : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts in Media Studies at Massey University, Manawatu, New Zealand

    Day, Paul Robert (2014)

    Masters thesis
    Massey University

    This thesis investigates how national boundaries and shared belonging can be evoked through the mediation of food culture and the past. The dynamic terrain traversed is where food culture, nostalgia and collective national identity meet on the television screen. New Zealand is a compelling nation in which to undertake such a study as nation-making continues to take place against a backdrop of post colonialism, competing national visions, the impact of modernity, the centrality of food to national survival and increased global interdependence. The key to accessing these insights are two highly popular local television productions which utilise food narratives; Coasters (2011) and The Food Truck (2012). This genre of television programming is becoming increasingly important with the growing global emphasis on utilising food as a language for telling stories about personal identity and collective narratives. This study provides a unique insight with an analysis informed by the principles of Michel Foucault and reinforced by first hand industry perspectives. Clear patterns of statements are indentified in a study of narrative form, aesthetic signs and representations of food culture. There is also an exploration of what powers the making of these statements through an investigation of the unique business and institutional environment for television in New Zealand. This thesis uncovers a number of key negotiations which take place through food and the use of nostalgia which reengage and redraw the legacy of colonialism and modernity. A fantasy food culture is evoked which attempts to re-forge the mythical link between food and memory and in doing so informs notions of shared identity. These statements of the past and food are reinforced by the industrial popularity for food narratives. However, this popularity also reveals risks to broader and more inclusive statements being made through food and the past which may provide “Kiwis” with richer insights into what it means to be New Zealanders.

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  • A mathematical model of volcanic plumes : submitted to the Institute of Natural and Mathematical Sciences in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Science in Mathematics at Massey University, Albany, New Zealand

    Duley, Joshua Manfred (2014)

    Masters thesis
    Massey University

    Volcanic plumes and the resultant tephra fallout are of signi cant concern to nations the world over. Several recent large-scale eruptions have caused such disruption to air traffic that huge proportions of European commerce have been severely compromised. The plumes of such eruptions exist beyond any human recourse and must simply be left to extinguish themselves in time. Currently, separate models do exist for plume dynamics and the atmospheric transport of particles, with a mixture of qualitative and quantitative results. In this thesis we develop a mathematical model with some similarities and some differences to those already in use. The model has its core in the conservation equations of mass, momentum and energy for the plume's driving gases and suspended particles. While these equations are non-linear and diffcult (if not impossible) to solve analytically, we can solve the equations numerically using a discretisation along the central vertical axis. Initially these equations are provided with full time-dependency, with a view to pursuing such results in the future. However, the numerical results contained here are limited to a steady- flow model of an established and sustained, buoyant plume.

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  • Well-being and local government : a New Zealand case study : Kaipara District Council; its responsibilities and responses to the regional museums of Kaipara, 2002 - 2011 : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Philosophy in Museum Studies, Massey University, Manawatū, New Zealand

    Stevens, Mary (2014)

    Masters thesis
    Massey University

    This thesis examines the concept of ‘well-being’, as first introduced by the Local Government Act in 2002, with particular emphasis given to cultural well-being. With no definitions in the legislation, it does this by focusing firstly on understanding the meaning of the terms and then secondly, by a case study of one local authority and its response to cultural well-being through relationships with the three local museums. Kaipara District Council (KDC), a small, rural local authority, was chosen as the case study. Three key research questions were posed. What is the meaning of “well-being” in the context of the LGA 2002? How is well-being, and in particular cultural well-being addressed by KDC and its long term planning documents? How does KDC work with the regional museums of Kaipara to meet the legislative mandate for cultural well-being? Answers were sought by undertaking an historical study of well-being and its long development on the international scene, then concentrating on KDC’s long term planning documents. An interview with the district’s Mayor about the practical application of cultural well-being and relationships with the regional museums, was offset with interviews conducted with representatives of each heritage organization about the reality of District Council/Museum interaction from their perspective. The research demonstrates that even without a definition, there was abundance of information available to form a good understanding of the concept. On the other hand, there was so much information that finding an encompassing definition for the term would be impossible. The research also demonstrates the difficulties that small authorities, with inadequate staffing and governance representatives, face when presented with a complex piece of legislation. Both Council and Museum representatives struggled to comprehend the meaning of cultural well-being but while KDC believed its response was sufficient, the regional Museums were not satisfied. This thesis argues that KDC falls short in meeting its cultural well-being responsibilities but there is much that the region’s iii museums can do themselves to improve the situation. The solution for Kaipara’s museums is transferable to every other museum in New Zealand that finds itself facing similar circumstances.

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  • The benefits of resistance training on blood lipid profile and body composition in Māori men : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Science in Exercise and Sport Science, Massey University, Manawatū, New Zealand

    Coley, Karl William (2014)

    Masters thesis
    Massey University

    Objectives: The primary objective of this study was to determine whether 12 weeks of resistance training at time periods of three, 30 minute sessions per week would provide enough stimuli to reduce the cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk of blood lipid profile and body composition in sedentary Māori (Indigenous New Zealanders) men. Methods: The study cohort consisted of a convenience sample of 16 Māori males aged 28 – 60y. Participants completed a resistance training intervention consisting of three 30 minute sessions per week for 12 weeks. Measures of pre- and post-BMI, waist to hip ratio (WHR), body composition and fasting lipids were made. Pre-, mid-, and post-intervention assessments of strength, aerobic fitness, body composition and blood composition were also undertaken. Exercise was controlled five days prior to the testing; whilst diet was restricted ~12 hours prior to blood tests. Results: Percentage body fat was significantly lower after the 12 week resistance training intervention (P<0.196) were not significantly different after completion of the intervention. Conclusions: This was the first study to investigate the effect of half hour resistance training bouts, three times per week on male Māori as a modality to alter their CVD risk profile. These findings support the hypothesis that resistance training can improve CVD risk profile through a change in body composition; namely a reduction in percentage body fat, increase in LBM, and a reduction in LDL-c. Although in this cohort this intervention has proved effective, further studies of larger populations are required to get a stronger level of significance.

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  • Application of flow cytometry for enumerating individual bacterial cultures from a mixed culture system : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Masters of Philosophy in Food Technology at Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand

    Horváth, Kylie (2014)

    Masters thesis
    Massey University

    Cultured dairy products are often made with more than one microbial culture. Yoghurt requires the cultivation of several bacterial species for its production and the level of each is important for different reasons. Differential plate count methods to enumerate the separate species in yoghurt are not ideal because many of the bacteria used have similar growth profiles and plate counts take several days to produce a result. A fast specific method for enumerating each culture would be beneficial because quick results would enable tighter control of processing or experimental conditions and the ability to track individual species amongst a background of similar bacteria. Flow cytometry combined with fluorescent in-situ hybridisation (FLOW-FISH) was investigated as a potential solution and successful enumeration was achieved within 1 day for a yoghurt microorganism, Streptococcus thermophilus (ST55), grown in M17 medium. This method may be improved to increase the signal-to-noise ratio and to reduce the assay time. The chemical propidium monoazide enabled a closer match to plate counts for flow cytometry results using a total viable count assay and may be useful combined with the FLOW-FISH assay for removing non-viable or viable, but non-culturable, cells from the results. An enzyme and/or detergent pre-treatment may achieve successful FLOW-FISH enumeration of cells grown in reconstituted skim milk – a similar matrix to yoghurt.

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  • Interaction within the therapeutic relationship : exploring the relationship between the music therapy practices of a music therapy student and the concepts used in intensive interaction : an exegesis submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Music Therapy, Te Kōkī New Zealand School of Music, Wellington, New Zealand

    How, Shona Louise (2014)

    Masters thesis
    Massey University

    This research project explores the relationship between the music therapy practices of a music therapy student and intensive interaction, a teaching model of communication used with children, young people and adults who experience challenges with learning and relating to others. Secondary analysis of clinical records (session notes and video footage) was used in this theoretical research, using both inductive and deductive methods of micro-analysis to explore the relationship between the two approaches. Themes included two relatively distinct forms of interactive communication – communication which predominantly used music and communication which used other modes. These two groups were then divided into further themes including: elements of music and improvisational musical techniques; visual cues; vocal activity; gestures and body language; movement activity and time/space. These themes were then correlated and compared with the corresponding features and descriptions of improvisational music therapy and intensive interaction. The findings suggest there is a relationship between the concepts used intensive interaction and the improvisational music therapy practices of the music therapy student; they both share features of the naturalistic processes of ‘infant-caregiver interactions’ within the elements of music, with both parties fine-tuning to one another’s rhythmic, melodic, textural and temporal nuances. However, improvisational or creative music therapy combines more complex usage of the elements of music including musical form, structure and texture to provide an interpersonal experience through a therapeutic relationship. That relationship is reliant on the music therapist’s sophisticated skills to combine emotion and music within the improvisational process. The strengths and limitations of the study are stated along with implications for training and further research in the field of music therapy and special education.

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  • Eating habits and nutrition attitudes among pregnant Chinese women in New Zealand : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Science in Nutritional Science at Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand

    Ma, Jingjing (2014)

    Masters thesis
    Massey University

    Immigration to a Western country can lead to dietary changes among Chinese immigrants, which can cause poor diets and health problems. Chinese immigrants' eating habits might be influenced by both Western and traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) nutrition recommendations. These two nutrition recommendations point out eating and nutrition during pregnancy is crucial for both maternal and fetal health, and they provide suggestions on eating habits during pregnancy. The population of Chinese women of reproductive age in New Zealand has increased dramatically. Since there is a lack of evidence about the eating habits and nutrition attitudes of pregnant Chinese women in New Zealand, the current study investigates pregnant Chinese women's eating habits, attitudes towards both Western and TCM nutrition, and possible relations to acculturation. Pregnant Chinese women in New Zealand were recruited mainly via a Chinese website, communities, churches, and the “snow-ball” model. The immigrants' eating habits, attitudes towards Western and TCM nutrition recommendations, and acculturation were measured by an online questionnaire. The questionnaire was completed by 84 pregnant Chinese women, with a median age of 30.0 (95% CI 29.0 - 30.6). The participants' acculturation score was comparatively low (1.98 ± 0.592) compared with the theoretical score range (1.0 to 5.0). Regarding New Zealand nutrition recommendations, some of the findings cause concerns: (1) most of the participants did not meet the recommended intake of vegetables, cereals, and dairy food during pregnancy; (2) although a large proportion of the participants had positive attitudes towards recommended supplements and food for pregnancy, they did not follow the recommendations in practice, especially for the iodine supplements and food rich in iodine (e.g., bread and breakfast cereals). However, it is positive to find that: (1) most of the participants always consumed folic acid supplements during the first trimester of pregnancy; (2) a majority of the participants thought it was important for them to limit fat, salt, and sugar intake and most of them seldom or never eat food high in fat, sugar, and salt. A majority of the participants had positive attitudes towards TCM, including: (1) balancing cold and hot (or yin and yang) foods and adjusting their diets according to seasons or body constitutions; (2) eating less greasy food, eating more light food, and eating more spleen and stomach strengthening food. However, only a small proportion of participants had positive attitudes towards foods with specific TCM features and did not consume these foods no matter whether they are recommended by TCM nutrition for pregnancy or not. Meanwhile, a considerable proportion of the participants reported neutral attitudes towards caring and learning about nutrition and most of the TCM nutrition recommendations. Acculturation was positively associated with meeting the New Zealand recommended intake from food groups, but was not positively associated with other eating habits. Acculturation was not related to most nutrition attitudes. It was only positively associated with attitudes towards Western nutrition recommendations for pregnant women and their attitudes towards TCM nutrition recommendation for healthy eating for adults. In addition, there was a positive correlation between attitudes towards Western nutrition and TCM nutrition (p < 0.05). The above findings of the current study provide useful information for health professionals who work with Chinese immigrants in New Zealand. In particular, health professionals should help immigrants to consume sufficient servings of foods and understand the importance of consuming iodine supplements during pregnancy. Additionally, it might be helpful for health professionals to be familiar with overall TCM nutrition recommendations.

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  • Population kinetics across the Indo-Pacific region : submitted in fulfillment of a Masters in Philosophy, Massey University, New Zealand

    Aliev, Aydar (2014)

    Masters thesis
    Massey University

    No abstract. The following is taken from the outline: The Pacific region provides a natural system to study complex admixture. From a broad perspective, there were two waves of settlement; the first 45,000 years ago (Melanesian), and the second, approximately 5,000 years ago (Asian) [1]. According to recent research, Asian ancestry does not decline gradually across Island Southeast Asia, but instead dramatically decreases, forming a cline [2]. There are several hypotheses explaining why there is a drastic, but not gradual, change in genetic ancestry proportions (Asian to Melanesian) across the region. One of these is a steep change in environmental conditions in Eastern Indonesia, which complicates rice cultivation [3]. Another explanation can be the switch from matri- to patriarchal social systems [4]. The main goal of this project is to explore demographic factors, such as migration and selection, to see if they can explain the genetic ancestry distribution. The main theoretical question that I will answer is: what is the reason behind the steep change in genetic ancestry proportion across eastern Indonesia? One of the reasons behind this could be cultural selection, although selection is just a hypothesis and the process might be selectively neutral. Anthropological data from the region are quite sparse, and this leads to the second goal of the project: to infer the history of modern Pacific populations using genetic data.

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  • The effect of applications of different nitrogen types and potassium on seed quality and AR37 endophyte presence at different spikelet and floret positions of perennial ryegrass cv. Halo

    Wang, Muyu (2014)

    Masters thesis
    Massey University

    Nitrogen has been considered as an important nutrient in the terrestrial system. In the seed production of ryegrasses, one of the most popular pastures used in New Zealand and other temperate-zone areas, the application of nitrogen is responsible for improving seed yield and seed quality. Novel fungal endophytes are also now commonly used in perennial ryegrass pasture systems. The effect of different forms of nitrogen on seed quality and endophyte infection frequency and alkaloid concentration including spikelet/floret positional effects is also of interest to researchers. This study was designed to determine the effects of three nitrogen forms and potassium treatments (six in total) on the seed quality (purity, thousand seed weight (TSW), and germination) and AR37 endophyte presence in the offspring seedlings of the perennial ryegrass cv. Halo at three spikelet positions (top, middle and bottom). Also the effect of two nitrogen forms (nitrate and ammonium) at different floret positions was investigated. The two nitrogen forms (urea and nitrate) with potassium had a poorer seed quality compared with the control and all nitrogen treatments applied without potassium. Nitrogen application (any form by itself) did not affect TSW of ‘Halo’, but a reduction was found under urea or nitrate with potassium. Also, seed germination percentages were not affected by nitrogen type when compared with the control, but urea with potassium gave a lower germination than the three nitrogen forms alone; and nitrate with potassium was lower than just the urea treatment. In the purity test, urea applied alone had a higher pure seed percentage than the control and the other nitrogen forms applied alone, but, again, the nitrogen with potassium application had the poorest performance in the test. On the other hand, none of these seed quality parameters differed among the three spikelet positions (top, middle and bottom). Both nitrogen and potassium application and different spikelet positions did not affect endophyte content in the offspring seedlings of ‘Halo’.In the minor experiment, where seven floret positions and only two nitrogen forms (ammonium (NH4+)and nitrate (NO3-)) were compared, the individual seed weights of Halo in florets3, 4, and 7 under nitrate application were higher than that under ammonium. The seed weight in floret 7 wasthe only position lower than floret 1 and 2 when ammonium was applied. The germination percentages were not affected by the two nitrogen forms, nor were different floret positions. Further, nitrogen application also did not alter empty seed percentages (in frequency), but the basal florets produced less empty seeds. Differences in endophyte content between ammonium and nitrate applications were found only in floret position 1 where nitrate reduced endophyte. Also amongst florets under nitrate there was higher endophyte content in floret positions 2, 4 and 7.

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  • The impact of post death communication [PDC] on bereavement : thesis completed to fulfill the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts, Massey University, May 2014

    McCormick, Brigid (2014)

    Masters thesis
    Massey University

    Post Death Communication (i.e. perceived communication from someone who has died), has been part of the human experience since the earliest recorded history, and it is now known to be highly beneficial to almost all bereaved individuals who experience it. Despite the fact that PDC appears to be common to all cultures and is usually very welcome and very healing, it has been judged by Western society in a negative way and as a result, fear of negative judgment has meant that experients are hesitant to discuss it. Using Thematic Analysis, this study conducted a small qualitative investigation into the experience of PDC among New Zealand and North American populations. In a semi-structured interview, conducted face to face where possible, and by Skype where necessary, 14 participants aged between 52 and 80 years were asked about the nature of their PDC experience, how they felt about it, and how it impacted their bereavement. Results showed conclusively that PDC is welcome and beneficial, and that experients are wary of discussing it for fear of being judged negatively. Thematic analysis revealed a meta-theme of Affirmation – participants were unanimous in believing PDC to be beneficial. Within this meta-theme were the three themes of Comfort - PDC brings comfort to the bereaved; Continuity – PDC brings a sense of personal and relational continuation, and Growth - PDC brings a sense of personal growth and a change in values. A fourth theme arising from the analysis was Negativity. Participants expressed fear of being judged in a pejorative way for having experienced PDC. Since 2000 it has been possible to induce PDC in a clinical setting, thereby elevating what had been a serendipitous, random occurrence into a powerful therapeutic tool. The protocol of Induced PDC is practiced on five continents, yet few people in the healing professions are aware of it. In New Zealand, Induced PDC appears to be unknown. This means that grieving Kiwis are going without the therapeutic benefits of PDC. The findings of this thesis indicate spontaneous PDC as experienced by the sample is overwhelmingly beneficial, and they support the use of Induced PDC in therapeutic settings. The findings have implications for raising awareness about and the use of Induced PDC by New Zealand clinicians.

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  • How does the interaction between the Filamin A repeat 10 domain and F-actin lead to severe OPD skeletal disorders? : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Science in Biochemistry at Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand

    Barzak, Fareeda Maged (2014)

    Masters thesis
    Massey University

    The cytoskeleton network allows cells to differentiate, divide, and move in response to the external environment creating a mechanoprotection system against cell stress. The actin cytoskeleton is stabilised and tightly regulated by various actin-binding proteins, one of which are the family of Filamin (FLN) proteins that crosslink F-actin into three-dimensional networks. Filamins also link the actin cytoskeleton to the cellular membrane through interactions with transmembrane proteins and function as a molecular scaffold for signalling molecules. In addition to an actin binding domain, each monomer contains a rod region of 24 immunoglobulin-like repeat domains with dimerisation of the monomers occurring at repeat 24. The human filamin family contains three FLN isoforms; FLNA, FLNB, and FLNC which are differentially expressed where FLNA is identified as the dominant isoform located on the X-chromosome essential for mammalian development. Mutations in Filamin A (FLNA) have been identified to cause distinctly different human diseases affecting the central nervous system, vascular system, or skeletal muscles; however, the molecular mechanisms of FLNA leading to these diseases remain unclear. Mutations cluster in distinct FLNA domains, suggesting their functional importance for mediating correct functions. Mutations in the FLNA repeat 10 domain are correlated with severe forms of the skeletal disorders Otopalatodigital syndrome spectrum disorders (OPD) thought to be due to an altered or gain-of-function phenotype. The aim of this study was to provide an insight into the biochemical properties of FLNA repeat 10 domain by better understanding how mutations in this domain lead to OPD. Initially, recombinant wildtype (Wt) and mutant (V1249A and A1188T) FLNA repeat 10 domain proteins (FLNAR10) were purified then compared by in vitro biochemical studies to investigate secondary structure, stability, and affinity towards F-actin. The FLNAR10 protein was revealed to have relatively weak binding affinity towards F-actin, consistent with being an additional contributor in the filamin protein to bind F-actin. Mutations in the FLNAR10 protein exhibited a slight increase in affinity towards F-actin, accompanied by a slight reduction of thermostability in comparison to the Wt protein, but no significant changes in the secondary structure were observed. This slight increase in the affinity of the mutant FLNA repeat 10 proteins towards F-actin is consistent with a gain-of function mechanism for the disease phenotype. Overall, these results contribute towards a better understanding of the FLNA function, providing further evidence towards a gain-of function mechanism for OPD.

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  • Digestibility of Fiberezy® and Timothy Haylage and behavioural observations and voluntary feed intake of FiberEzy® and rye clover hay in Thoroughbred horses : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Science, Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand

    Patel, Deepa (2014)

    Masters thesis
    Massey University

    This thesis describes a field study, a laboratory study and two animal studies evaluating the production of timothy grass grown under New Zealand conditions, the composition of a commercially prepared ensiled lucerne and timothy mix ( FiberEzy®: a 50:50 timothy lucerne mix) and ensiled timothy grass;, the stability of FiberEzy® during 12 months of storage; and also the digestibility and voluntary feed intake of FiberEzy®, ensiled timothy grass and Rye-clover hay when fed to Thoroughbred horses. For the field study, grass samples were collected from a representative section (6m x 16m) of a field in Reporoa, (Waikato, New Zealand) sown with timothy grass (Phleum pratense L.) on the 10th of March 2010 at Longitude 176°34’E, Latitude 38°39’S. The samples were collected at regular intervals to investigate changes in the dry matter (DM), acid detergent fibre (ADF), neutral detergent fibre (NDF) and lignin content of the crop over the growing season. There was an increase (17.7to 35.89%) in the dry matter content and lignin content (3.0to 6.3%) of timothy grass over time as the grass matured. Once harvested and ensiled, a sample of timothy grass and FiberEzy® were analysed for total DM, percentages of: crude protein; crude fat; crude fibre; ash; gross energy; hot water soluble carbohydrates; pectin, (NDF), (ADF), lignin, and vitamin E content. Lab analysis showed that FiberEzy® had higher levels of crude protein, pectin, lignin, ash and vitamin E (p3% of the body weight. The horses were again stalled individually in loose boxes (4 x 4 m) lined with rubber matting. Voluntary feed intake was measured over 17 days. Day 1 to 8 was the adaptation phase and from day 9-17 of the study the horses were scan sampled and videoed for two hours every morning(9:30-11:30 am) after feeding and two hours in the evening (4:30-6:30 pm) after feeding. There were significant differences in VFI between time periods (24.3±0.9 vs 17.8±0.4 kg DM /day, p<0.05) and between feeds (FiberEzy®: 24.3±0.4 vs. Rye-clover hay: 17.8±0.7 kg DM /day) but not an interaction. Behaviours were typical of loose box housed horses and differences in feeding behaviour observed correlated with the differences in VFI measured between feeds. The results of this thesis suggest that FiberEzy® is a suitable alternative to concentrate-based supplementary feed.

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  • Primary school teachers [sic] perceptions of gender-based differences : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Educational Psychology at Massey University, Albany, New Zealand

    Booth, Ingrid (2014)

    Masters thesis
    Massey University

    This study explores primary school teachers [i.e. teachers'] perceptions of gender-based differences in primary school in New Zealand. In this mixed-method study, the research utilised an online survey to collect data in three domains: teacher as self, teacher-student dynamics, and teacher collegiality. Quantitative analysis revealed overall no differences; however, quantitative analysis showed differences in the participants' perceptions of teachers content knowledge, the ability to treat students fairly, and teachers' positive attitude toward the profession. Qualitative analysis also revealed differences in participants' perceptions of the jobs held by males and females in the primary sector with male teachers receiving more negative responses when compared to female primary teachers. Furthermore all of the participants perceived a need for more male primary teachers in the primary sector. The participants were unsure if male teachers had an adequate amount of content knowledge and whether female teachers treated their students fairly. The participants perceived that males [i.e. male] teachers' attitudes toward the profession was not as positive as female teachers' attitudes toward the profession. Male primary teachers' [i.e. teachers] are always in demand in primary schools in New Zealand; but could that be for the wrong reasons? The literature has cast doubt on the common assumptions that male teachers are needed as male role models and that their presence can improve the behaviour and academic achievement of boys. The literature suggests that men in the primary teacher workforce are often viewed in terms of their inherent male qualities rather than personal attributes; their ability to be a role model rather than their caring qualities and ability to build relationships. The research findings provide insight into primary teachers perceptions of gender-based differences and could lead to improved teacher education and professional development programs as well as the recruitment of more effective male primary teachers.

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  • Breeding and transgenic approaches to improving water use efficiency in white clover (Trifolium repens L.) : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Science in Plant Biology at Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand

    Raynes, Julia Sarah Margaret (2014)

    Masters thesis
    Massey University

    This thesis investigates the potential role of the ABA biosynthetic gene 9-cis epoxycarotenoid dioxygenase 1(NCED1) as a determinant of water-use-efficiency (WUE) in plants as part of a longer term aim to confer improved WUE to the forage legume white clover (Trifolium repens L.). Two experimental approaches have been used. The first looked at the expression of NCED1 in a range of Trifolium species that display anatomical and morphological traits that confer some adaptations to growth and survival in dryland habitats. The second approach involved over-expression of NCED1 in the model species tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum) in proof-of-concept experiments to directly determine if any changes in plant water relations can be measured. Initially the constitutive expression of TrNCED1 was assessed, using the quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (q-RT-PCR), in two varieties of white clover. The first is an agronomically elite cultivar with a higher water requirement for optimal growth, cv. Grasslands Kopu II, and the second a dryland-adapted ecotype, Tien Shan. It was found that for both varieties, TrNCED1 expression was highest in the younger (first-fully-expanded) leaf (FFEL) tissue, followed by root tissue, then lastly apical tissue. When comparing the two varieties under well-watered conditions, the relative expression of TrNCED1 was higher in aerial parts of the cv. Kopu, but in the roots of the Tien Shan ecotype with respect to the reference genes, TrActin and TrGAPDH. Further, in the high biomass cv. Grasslands Kopu II, expression of TrNCED1 decreased in the apical and FFEL tissues of plants experiencing a water deficit, and decreased while for the dryland ecotype Tien Shan, TrNCED1 expression did not change in the apex reguardless of plant water status. Expression in the FFEL increased in tissue experiencing water deficit, and decreased in roots, suggesting different mechanisms for drought tolerance and response in the two varieties. For the range of Trifolium species assessed, constitutive expression of the TrNCED1 homologue was measured under well watered conditions in the FFEL and apical tissues. Essentially no significant difference in expression in either tissue between species was detected, with respect to the reference genes, TrActin and TrGAPDH. model species. In other studies, over-expression of NCED1 has been found to confer some characteristics associated with increased WUE, although abnormal growth associated with high levels of ABA at key developmental stages has proved problematic. For this thesis, the two senescence associated promoters, Senescence-Activated-Gene (SAG13) and Senescence-Associated-Receptor-Kinase (SARK), were selected to drive over-expression of NCED1 from Solanum lycopersicum in tobacco. Of those plants that came through tissue culture and were successfully established in soil, a single line transformed with SAG13p::SlNCED1, and three plants transformed with SARKp::SlNCED1, were shown to be positive for transgene insertion using a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) with genomic DNA. Of these, two plants, both transformed with SARKp::SlNCED1, were found to express SlNCED1 when tested using PCR with cDNA from isolated RNA. Water relations measurements performed on all four plants that were positive for the transgene, an empty vector control, a selection of plants that were negative for transgene insertion, and some wild-type controls, found that one of the lines confirmed as expressing the transgene, line 751-1, had a very low transpiration rate and low level of stomatal conductance. To extend these measurements to determine and increase in water-use-efficiency, a comparison must be made between growth rate and water uptake, and many more transgenic plant lines must be analysed. Finally, to determine whether the eventual transformation of white clover with SAG13p::SlNCED1 and SARKp::SlNCED1 would result in co-suppression of both types of transgene and the constitutive NCED1, expression of TrNCED1 in seven tissue types, from two varieties was measured. Highest expression was determined in the root tissue and in the younger leaf tissue, but was lower in the mature tissue examined. This suggests that transformation with SlNCED1 and expression in the mature tissues is not likely to be influenced by the constitutively expressed TrNCED1.

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  • Purification and characterisation of a secreted glycosidase, from the extreme xerophile Wallemia ichthyophaga : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirement for the degree in Master of Science in Biochemistry at Massey University Palmerston North, New Zealand

    Miller, Taryn Angela (2014)

    Masters thesis
    Massey University

    With recent pressure to reduce the environmental impact of leather production, research has been focused on the development of an alternative depilation method, as the conventional method for depilation contributes up to 60% of the total pollution produced. Contaminated salted ovine pelts stored at LASRA were easily depilated when drum washed, and the resultant leather was of good quality. The pelts were visibly contaminated with microorganisms, and it was thought that these may be secreting enzymes that loosened the wool fibre without damaging key structural skin components. Identification of the enzyme or enzymes was thus of interest. The microorganism/s responsible for the secretion of the depilation enzyme/s were isolated and identified through sequencing the 16S/18S ribosomal RNA genes. Depilation, using the crude secretome solutions, was then assessed using fresh ovine skin as well as SACPIC, a micro scale staining method used to assess skin structure. Unfortunately, none of the secretomes from either a single or a combination of the microorganisms isolated, had depilation activity. The secretome of W.ichthyophaga, a xerophilic filamentous fungus, which was consistently isolated from the contaminated pelts, was chosen to be characterised using proteomic methods. 1D SDS-PAGE gel/CHIP separation of the proteins in the secretome showed it contained mainly glycosidases, with no lipases, esterases, or proteases identified. Some of the proteins identified had suggested roles in resistance to osmotic pressure, while the remaining proteins were intracellular. Overall, 21 proteins were identified. A purification procedure involving AEX and SEC was successfully developed for the isolation of one of the glycosidases from the secretome. The resultant purified fractions formed a doublet band when analysed by SDS-PAGE. The reason for this remains unknown, but was shown not to be due to an impurity or heterodimerisation. The purified glycosidase was identifed as belonging to the GH3 family by mass spectrometry. It was found to have a pH optimum of pH 6.0, was optimally active at 10% NaCl, and was itself glycosylated. The glycosidase was able to hydrolyse both a- and ß- linked glycosidic bonds in di- and polysaccharides. Interestingly, both the disaccharide and artifical p-nitrophenol forms of galactose were not cleaved by the enzyme.

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  • The diet of the New Zealand long-tailed bat, Chalinolobus tuberculatus : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Masters in Zoology at Massey University, Manawatu, New Zealand

    Gurau, Alix Larissa (2014)

    Masters thesis
    Massey University

    The long-tailed bat (Chalinolobus tuberculatus Forster, 1884) and the lesser short-tailed bat (Mystacina tuberculata Gray, 1883) are both endemic and the only extanct bat species in New Zealand (Alexander, 2001). The long-tailed bat and the short-tailed bat are considered threatened; they are listed as vulnerable on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Animals and the Department of Conservation (DOC) lists long-tailed bats as ‘nationally vulnerable’, and lesser short-tailed bats as ‘nationally endangered’ (O'Donnell, Christie, Hitchmough, Lloyd, & Parsons, 2010). Research conducted on long-tailed bats has focused on roosting choice and behaviour with limited investigation of their diet. This leaves big gaps in our knowledge and due to both species inhabiting exotic plantation forests there is also the possibility for the bats to be important insect pest control agents. Insect fragments were identified from New Zealand long-tailed bat faecal samples collected from under known roosts and harp traps in Kinleith Forest and Pureora Forest Park in the central North Island, New Zealand. In total 2247 fragments were mounted on slides (1335 from Pureora and 912 from Kinleith) and 15% of these were unidentifiable (346). Over both study sites, Diptera made up the largest percentage of the diet with 40%, Lepidoptera comprised 24%, Coleoptera 18%, Trichoptera 0.8%, and Hymenoptera 0.36%. Whole mites or mite remains comprised 0.8% of all fragments. Eleven fragments in total were found to be from Lepidoptera larvae which contradicts previous observations of long-tailed bats not eating terrestrial, non-winged insects. There were significant differences in the diet of the bats in native forest with the bats in exotic forest, showing long-tailed bats can be flexible in regards to the environment they live in whilst maintaining a normal diet. The diets of the same two populations of New Zealand long-tailed bat were assessed by using stable carbon (δ13C) and nitrogen (δ15N) isotope analysis of faeces. This is the first instance where stable isotope analysis has been used to investigate New Zealand bat diet. Faecal samples from a population of New Zealand long-tailed bats in a Fiordland forest and a population of New Zealand short-tailed bats from Pureora Forest Park were also analysed to use as a comparison. The δ13C (‰) and δ15N (‰) values of bat faeces were similar to those of Lepidoptera, Diptera, and Coleoptera implying these are the insects eaten most often. Only minor similarities were found between the δ13C (‰) and δ15N (‰) values of bat faeces and those of Trichoptera, Hymenoptera, and Hemiptera implying these insects are eaten less often. New Zealand long-tailed bats in Pureora Forest and Kinleith Forest have opportunistic, generalist diets. There were no significant differences in the diet of the bats in native forest with the bats in exotic forest showing bats inhabiting exotic plantation forests can maintain a good quality diet similar to bats inhabiting native forests. There were also no significant differences in the diet of Pureora Forest long-tailed bats and short-tailed bats which is strange considering the bats occupy different niches. In this study by combining physical search of faeces and stable isotope analysis, new information on the diet of the long-tailed bat was gained. After comparison, both techniques have their merits and that, if possible, it is best to utilise both when investigating diet.

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