26,369 results for Thesis

  • O le Soga'imiti: An embodiment of God in the Samoan male body

    Maliko, Tavita (2012)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

    Much of the discourse especially the church sermons in my church denomination or at least the ones that I have attended, constructs the body as only a material thing, sinful, bad and evil as opposed to the divinity and purity of the spirit. On the other hand, the body is valued and greatly celebrated in the Samoan culture; this is a vitally important dilemma because while inside Church the body is evil and is to be wrapped and covered, outside it the body is more meaningful when visible and exposed. This thesis was borne out of the need to explore that struggle—one between the sinfulness of bodily and material life, as opposed to the godliness/holiness of spiritual life as reflected in church theological messages on one hand, against a culture that celebrate the body and everything material about it as good and divine, on the other. If, according to Christian theology, humans are created in the image of God, how is it that the body is often ridiculed in Christian theology as sinful and evil? This study examines the pre-Christian concept Atua (God) and the current Christian concept God and how the two are socially constructed, merged or differentiated and embodied through a Samoan male body. The thesis draws upon a number of different sources of "text" including over 600 written works, two short documentary films, and interview with fifteen Samoan men and women that includes two fa‘afafine. Drawing primarily upon the interview data a number of themes were identified for closer analysis. These themes include the construction of the Samoan male, the construction of the male role of tautua (one who serve) and his relation to the family and community, the construction of God as creator and as a Samoan matai (chief), and how these socio-theological values and meanings are embodied and help shape the life of the Samoan male. The findings of this work reveal the social construction of a particular version of God, his message, his work, and his will, and a particular version of the Samoan Christian believer through theological discourse. The social construction and embodiment of the Christian God in theology and practices, is markedly different from those of the pre-Christian Atua(s) and belief in deity and spirits which to some degree, many Samoans still hold onto in their embodiment of God. A soga‘imiti is symbolic of the ultimate Samoan male: he is brave, fearless, has wisdom and knowledge, the provider and protector of his family, church, village and country. His tatau (tattoo) is a literal inscription of his socio-religious identity, beliefs and duties; the motifs of which are visual depiction of his embodied life; this constitute the embodiment of his environment, family and God. Soga‘imiti is synonymous with embodied cultural pride, beauty, bravery, ability and potentiality. In contemporary Samoa, not all males have a tatau, but all males are expected to live the same embodied life and have the same embodied qualities as those of soga‘imiti described above, to enable them to serve their families and communities. A man without a tatau is not a lesser man relative to a soga‘imiti but the term soga‘imiti is nevertheless used in this thesis as representative of Samoan male with or without the tatau. This thesis is a deconstruction of the embodied life of the Samoan male as seen through the lens of the social construction of cultural and theological discourses.

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  • Mouri Tu, Mouri Moko, Mouri Ora! Moko as a wellbeing strategy

    Penehira, Mera (2011)

    Doctoral thesis
    University of Waikato

    This research has been undertaken within the Health Research Council funded International Collaborative Indigenous Health Research Partnership (ICIHRP) program, “The role of resiliency in responding to blood borne viral and sexually transmitted infections in Indigenous communities”. Some Indigenous communities in Australia, New Zealand and Canada have been shown to experience higher rates of blood borne viral infections. There are a number of categories of health intervention that have been shown to be effective in prevention and enhancing access to treatment for blood borne viral infections, including various forms of health promotion, enhanced diagnostic and treatment services, and harm reduction measures related to injecting drug use. The present research was undertaken with the understanding that development of effective responses of this kind among Indigenous people would benefit from a better understanding of the social and cultural factors that might protect against these infections and their consequences. It is argued that such factors are linked in various ways to Indigenous resistance and resiliency, which is described as the means by which people choose to make use of individual and community strengths to protect themselves against adverse health outcomes and enhance their health and wellbeing. In this thesis I explore how people and their identity are affected when you are part of a marginalised or vulnerable population – namely, Māori women who have contracted the Hepatitis C Virus (HCV). I argue that traditional knowledge and healing practices are central to Māori getting well and keeping well, and that the use of cultural frameworks and practices have potentially restorative, therapeutic and healing values that are not yet researched or understood by the health field. I argue that a Māori framework of wellbeing, namely ‘Mana Kaitiakitanga’, provides the context in which tā moko (Māori traditional tattoo) fits naturally as a healing intervention. I share the stories of Māori women with HCV who have applied this (tā moko and other forms of tattoo) in their lives and in their journeys back to wellness. Tā moko is a process that penetrates the flesh and marks the skin; it is a process that involves both blood and pain, which may seem incongruous with healing. It is argued however that through pain comes understanding; through pain comes a RE-membering of strength; through pain comes joy; and finally through marking comes identity of who we are and how well we have been and can be again. Issues and intersections of identity, marginalisation, gender, health, and wellbeing are at the forefront of this research story and of the journeys of the three women whose case studies are presented in this thesis. What makes this thesis unique is that it researches all three of these potential cornerstones of health: identity; wellbeing (spiritual and emotional), and physical wellbeing, in relation to a specific health problem, namely HCV. It is intended that this work will add power to what might be viewed as a particularly Indigenous solution to a virus that disproportionately affects our Indigenous population. This is not about rejecting Western health solutions, but it is about recognising and returning to Indigenous health solutions.

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  • Lipid metabolism of mammalian erythrocytes with special reference to cellular aging : a thesis presented in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of PhD in Biochemistry at Massey University

    Winterbourn, Christine Coe

    Thesis
    Massey University

    Aspects of the lipid metabolism of mammalian erythrocytes, with special reference to changes in aging cells, have been investigated. Bovine erythrocytes and leukocytes have been incubated with labelled palmitic acid, and the incorporation of the fatty acid into each cell type has been followed. A high level of incorporation was observed with leukocytes, mainly into the phospholipids and triglycerides. Incorporated palmitate took part in chain-lengthening processes and some 14CO2 was produced during the incubations. Incorporation into the lipids of erythrocytes was very much lower than that observed for leukocytes and low leukocyte concentrations in red cell preparations accounted for a significant proportion of [1-14c] palmitate uptake into the cell lipid. The importance of accounting for the metabolic activities of residual leukocytes has been stressed. After allowing for leukocyte contributions, a significant incorporation of palmitate into erythrocyte phospholipids, in particular phosphatidyl choline and Phosphatidyl ethanolamine, was demonstrated. However, no significant uptake into the small quantities of triglyceride or cholesterol esters present in the erythrocytes could be detected. Experiments have bean carried out to examine variations in lipid content with cell age, in bovine erythrocytes fractionated by serial osmotic hemolysis. Only slight differences in cellular phospholipid or cholesterol content were found, and cholesterol:phospholipid ratios were constant in all fractions. No marked variation in cholesterol ester, triglyceride, or free fatty acid concentration with cell age could be detected. Human red cells have been fractionated according to age by ultracentrifugation over discontinuous albumin density gradients. The efficiency of such age separation was examined by following the radioactivity distribution in the gradient when rat cells were fractionated at intervals after administration of reticulocytes labelled with [14c] glycine. Considerable localisation of cells of particular ages in specific density bands was observed. Variations in lipid composition and in fatty acid uptake into the cells have been investigated. A small decrease in lipid content with cell age was detected, the decrease being most marked between the youngest and all the other fractions. It is suggested that all the changes in lipid content which occur in aging red cells could take place during the transition fron reticulocyte to erythrocyte. Incorporations of labelled linoleate into intact red cells, and linoleate and palmitate into ghosts enriched with ATP and CoA have been examined. The major cell lipids which took up the acids were phosphatidyl choline, phosphatidyl ethanolamine, components tentatively identified as phosphatidic acid and diglyceride, and an unidentified non-polar lipid. A wide range of behaviour has been observed for different normal cell populations, both in total uptake, and in the distribution of the incorporated acid. In most cases uptake was predominantly into phosphatidyl choline, but in others uptakes into phosphatidyl choline and phosphatidyl ethanolamine were comparable. The observed range of behaviour can be explained as arising from differences in concentrations of the substrates required for fatty acid incorporation in the plasma in which the cells or ghosts were incubated. Fatty acid uptakes into red cells and ghosts were also studied as a function of cell age. A wide diversity of behaviour for different blood samples was apparent. In some caseś, uptake into all components was essentially independent of cell age, but in others, uptakes into specific components showed definite trends with age. Most noteworthy were a marked increase with age in uptake into phosphatidyl ethaolamine, with essentially constant uptake into phosphatidyl choline, and a decrease in uptake into phosphatidyl choline with uptake into phosphatidyl ethanolamine remaining constant. To account for the diversity of behaviour, it is suggested that changes in either enzyme availability or conformation, affecting cellular enzyme activity, occur as the cells age, and that only for certain plasma concentrations of the substrates required for fatty acid uptake, are these changes in enzyme activity evident. In a single study, bovine erythrocytes have beon labelled in vivo with [14c] acetate, and levels of activity in the cell lipids followed. A decline in free cholesterol activity, arising from rapid equilibration with plasma cholesterol, has been demonstrated. A fall in activity that could be interpreted in terms of red cells being able to exchange some but not all of their phospholipids with plasma counterparts has also been found. Roles for triglycerides and cholesterol esters in the erythrocyte, and properties of the erythrocyte phospholipid transacylation mechanism have been discussed. The possible importance of changes in lipid constitution and lipid metabolism in red cell aging has been considered.

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  • Anarchists, Punks and Vegans - oh my! Ethnography of an anti-capitalist Community of Dissent

    Foote, David Mitchell (2009)

    Masters thesis
    University of Waikato

    Although ethnographies dealing with anti-capitalist activism, veganism or the punk scene are far from uncommon, until recently the temptation has been to view these groups as separate and distinct, rather than diffuse and overlapping. Using data gathered during interviews and participant observation in some parts of urban New Zealand, this study offers a sketch of the boundaries of the Community embodied by that overlap. Participants' own definitions for key terms such as anarchism, punk and capitalism/consumerism are presented and scrutinised in order to provide a starting point for this analysis. A lineage of thought is juxtaposed with each of these terms, with the intention of contesting some of the popular stereotypes surrounding them. The Community's own sense of difference is then explored through the responses of participants, which are analysed and some commonalities suggested. The most critical of these is the perception amongst participants of a greater engagement with their choices than they generally considered to be the case within the mainstream. Finally, some internal divisions within the Community are noted and a model for the radicalisation and mediation of dissent is suggested to explain this.

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  • Access to Marriage for Same-Sex Couples in New Zealand: A Matter of Human Rights

    Christie, Nigel (2009)

    Doctoral thesis
    University of Waikato

    Scope of work undertaken: This thesis focuses on access to marriage as a fundamental human right, and the premise that there is no justifiable reason, in terms of New Zealand law, why same-sex couples should be excluded from this right. Method of investigation: This thesis is the result of participatory action research and academic analysis. I have been centrally involved with the issue of equal access to same-sex marriage and, therefore, this thesis has been an experiential exercise involving engagement with key protagonists in human rights issues in New Zealand - proponents and detractors. However, I have also considered a great deal of primary and secondary material, particularly in relation to human rights law and family law, and have considered key developments regarding relationship recognition in a range of overseas jurisdictions. Main divisions of the thesis: Part I provides introductory information, setting the objectives and the parameters of the thesis. This part also includes the methodology used in the gathering and analysis of information in the writing of this thesis. In Part II, I provide a range of information to set the context in which I have considered the issue of same-sex marriage. This includes a personal perspective, an analysis of the human rights imperatives, and a commentary on a range of issues relating to New Zealand's constitutional and social arrangements. In Part III, I consider developments in the law in New Zealand and overseas. I examine the response of the New Zealand courts, the United Nations Human Rights Committee, and the Government and Parliament of New Zealand to the call for same-sex marriage in New Zealand. I also examine legislative initiatives and court challenges in a range of overseas jurisdictions and the extent to which these have been successful in providing equal access to marriage for same-sex couples and the impact these might have on future developments in New Zealand. Finally, Part IV provides a summary of the key themes of the thesis, a consideration of options for possible future action, and suggestions with regard to ensuring future success. Conclusions reached: My conclusion is that there is no valid justification for denying full marriage equality to same-sex couples in New Zealand, and that there are steps that we can take to ensure the achievement of full and equal treatment under the law. It is my thesis that there is no valid justification for denying full marriage equality to same-sex couples in New Zealand. Contribution to knowledge of the subject This thesis provides a comprehensive analysis of law and historical fact relating to the recognition of lesbian and gay relationships in New Zealand, and in that sense, provides a cultural and historical tool for immediate use. The thesis also, however, provides a platform for future progress. I consider that it will be able to be used as a reference to shift attitudes. Much of the material in this thesis has been used already, both in New Zealand and internationally, in helping to bring about change.

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  • Knowledge of vitamin D, Attitudes towards vitamin D and sun exposure and Prevalence of vitamin D supplement use in elite athletes.

    Walker, Nicole Marie (2014)

    Masters thesis
    University of Otago

    Background: Vitamin D deficiency is prevalent amongst athletes which could affect health, training and performance. Sun safety messages often dominate over vitamin D education and this is evident when investigating attitudes towards and knowledge of vitamin D and sun exposure in the general population. Knowledge of and attitudes towards vitamin D amongst athletes has not previously been researched. Such information is important when designing educational interventions and preventing or treating deficiency. Despite high rates of deficiency in elite athletes, few studies have documented the prevalence of vitamin D supplement use in this population. This study aimed to investigate: knowledge of vitamin D, attitudes towards sun exposure and vitamin D and the prevalence of vitamin D-containing supplement use in elite athletes. Design: 110 international-level New Zealand rugby (n=35), hockey (n=22) and rowing (n=55) athletes completed an interview-style questionnaire during summer months (February and March). The questionnaire consisted of 4 sections: Demographics, Knowledge of vitamin D, Supplements and Diet and Attitudes to sun exposure and vitamin D. Chi-squared testing was used to determine differences between gender, ethnicity and sport. Results: Almost all (97%) athletes had heard of vitamin D and two-thirds were able to name the sun as a source of vitamin D. Pacific Islanders were less likely to be able to name the sun as a source compared to Māori or New Zealand (NZ) Europeans (p=0.008). Only 17% of athletes were able to name another source of vitamin D, less than half (45%) of athletes were able to name a personal characteristic that affects vitamin D status and 29% could name one or more health benefits of having an adequate vitamin D status. Rowers tended to know the most about sources and health benefits of vitamin D. Only 5% of athletes were concerned about their vitamin D status but 12% intentionally spent time in the sun to improve their vitamin D. A larger proportion, one-third of athletes intentionally spent time in the sun with intention to tan, and two-thirds were concerned about the risk of skin cancer with sun exposure. Females and hockey players were more likely to spend time in the sun to tan and Pacific Islanders were the least likely to (p<0.05). Vitamin D, calcium and cod liver oil supplements were used by 6-7% of athletes and one-third used multivitamins. Conclusion: Elite athletes’ vitamin D knowledge was limited beyond knowing the sun is a source of vitamin D. The small proportion of athletes concerned about their vitamin D status understood more about vitamin D than those unconcerned, therefore educational interventions are likely to be successful. Vitamin D intake from food and supplements was not likely to be adequate to maintain summer status for most athletes. Concern of skin cancer predominated over concern of vitamin D status. Elite athletes require vitamin D education in order to improve knowledge of vitamin D and concern of their own status. This should be coordinated with sun safety messages to reduce risk of skin cancer whilst preventing vitamin D deficiency in athletes.

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  • New Zealand and the search for security 1944-1954: 'a modest and moderate collaboration'

    Barrington, Brook (1993)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

    In the decade which followed the Second World War, New Zealand foreign policy was preoccupied with issues of national security. The war had revealed not only that New Zealand could be threatened by Asian hostility, but also that British power could no longer be relied upon for protection. Successive New Zealand governments therefore looked for ways to reinforce the security of New Zealand. Their central objective was to seek a modest and moderate collaboration with key allies. As a result of this search for security, New Zealand foreign policy was transformed in the decade 1944-1954. Not only did politicians and officials engage in an ever-increasing round of international meetings and conferences, but the formal international obligations of the Dominion grew at a remarkable rate. New Zealand began the decade signing the Australian - New Zealand Agreement, and ended the decade a member of the South East Asia Collective Defence Treaty. In the intervening years the Dominion had become party to the ANZAM arrangement and the ANZUS treaty, and had joined the Colombo Plan. New Zealanders also played a not insignificant part in the formation and operation of the United Nations, the occupation of Japan, the Japanese peace treaty, and the Korean war. This rapid growth in the complexity of New Zealand foreign policy sprang from two sources. The first was the policy of collaboration, which involved the Dominion in a range of international activities at which New Zealand leaders would have balked had they not been in the company of key allies. The second source was a sense of institutional confidence and growing expertise. New Zealand officials and politicians had learned diplomatic skills and acquired international recognition during the Second World War, and the creation of the Department of External Affairs in 1943 meant that Dominion had both the experience and the machinery to take a much wider interest in world affairs. By 1954, links with the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth, although cherished and still very important, were no longer predominant. New Zealand's main strategic commitment remained in the Middle East, but the shifting frontiers of the cold war and the prospect of regional rather than global conflict had forced New Zealand policymakers to take greater account of events in the Pacific. This was reinforced by New Zealand's traditional policy of collaboration: both the United Kingdom and the United States had also become more involved in Pacific affairs. And as the focus of New Zealand foreign policy shifted increasingly to the Pacific region, so the relative importance of the United States as an ally increased. But New Zealand's interests remained world-wide, and this was reflected in the policy of collaboration. There was never any question of reducing links with the United Kingdom and Europe in favour of those with the United States and the Pacific. Instead, in what was sometimes to prove a delicate balancing act, New Zealand policymakers looked to accommodate both old allies and new as they adapted to the succession of the United States to Britain's position of pre-eminent world power.

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  • The Occurrence and Causes of Pasture Pulling Under Dairy Farming on Pumice Soils

    Bagley, Emma Rosiland (2015)

    Masters thesis
    University of Waikato

    The occurrence, and causes, of pasture pulling under dairy farming on Orthic Pumice Soils (Typic Udivitrands) in the central North Island of New Zealand was investigated. Pasture pulling occurs on Pumice Soils, where dairy cows pull clumps of pasture from the soil, thus diminishing pasture production. The overall objective of this study was to investigate the occurrence, and establish the causes, of pasture pulling under dairy farming on Orthic Pumice Soil in the Central North Island, New Zealand. Fifteen paddocks containing pasture of differing ages were investigated at Pouakani dairy farm near Mangakino. Soil profile descriptions were undertaken, and samples were taken seasonally to monitor root depth and density, soil macrofauna, soil dry bulk density, and penetration resistance. Pasture pulling was monitored every 3 weeks by recording the number and size of pulls in a 4 m² quadrant at five points equally spaced along a transect in 15 paddocks. Pasture pulling was recorded in all paddocks and occurred throughout the year, but was most common during the late summer and autumn. Up to 80 % of the root biomass was in the 0-5 cm depth. The 5-10 cm depth generally showed increased compaction with higher soil dry bulk density and penetration resistance then the surface soil. Pastures in isolated clumps were more commonly pulled than more evenly spread pastures. There was an interaction between pasture age and size of pulls, with more medium and large sized pulls in the younger (1-3 year old) pastures. Although anecdotal evidence reports worse pulling in younger pastures, we did not find strong evidence for that assertion. Pasture pulling in 2014 at Pouakani dairy farm was not more obviously impacted by insects. Grass population numbers were uniformly low, and black beetle was rarely seen. Perennial ryegrass was dominant in all paddocks. The paddocks with older, more established pastures contained a higher proportion of other grass species and weeds. Only grass was pulled, other species such as clover, chicory and weeds were not pulled by grazing stock. A pasture pulling index, created to account for the size distribution of the pulls, was more effective at illustrating the seasonal trends associated with pasture pulling than the mean total pulls per quadrat. Overall, the pasture pulling was not severe at Pouakani Dairy farms in 2014. This study has not discovered one sole cause of pasture pulling at Pouakani dairy farms, but has identified a number of soil characteristics that may be contributing, including; limited rooting depth, low root density in the 5-10 cm depth, increased compaction with depth, less cohesive soil when it has low moisture, and the incidence of pasture growing in clumps.

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  • An econometric analysis of growth performance and adjustment under policies inspired by the IMF in the Pacific Island economies : a thesis presented to Massey University in fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in the Institute of Development Studies

    Gani, Azmat

    Thesis
    Massey University

    This study, utilising a region-country-specific approach, examines the experience of four Pacific island economies (Fiji, Papua New Guinea, the Solomon Islands and Western Samoa) under policies inspired by the International Monetary Fund's (IMF) during 1980-92. To achieve this, the study examines the nature and the causes of economic crises in these countries and IMF's policy response. An empirical analysis of this study starts with a formulation of a growth model within the new endogenous theory of growth, examining the significance of a range of factors thought to have influenced growth performance. The theoretical arguments of IMF-inspired policies and an empirical analysis testing the arguments are also examined. The central concern is how far IMF-inspired macro policies produced desired objectives. This is investigated through an econometric analysis of the relationship between the objective variables of sustained growth, a viable balance of payments and low inflation, and a number of its instrumental tools, and examines the contribution of IMF-inspired policies on the socio-economic development of these countries. The results show the economic crises during 1980-92 were a product of a combination of internal economic and non-economic and external factors causing sluggish growth, large deficits in current account, deteriorating balance of trade and inflationary pressures. The investigation of the crises revealed that some factors were common in all four countries while others were country specific. Empirical results show high inflation, low levels of outward orientation, high government consumption, exchange rate variability and vulnerability to the vagaries of natural disasters and the international economic environment adversely affected growth performance. Empirical results provide weak evidence of political instability adversely affecting economic growth while investments in human and physical capital did not contribute to growth. In evaluating IMF-inspired policies, the developing South Pacific country case studies indicate that such policies have satisfactorily shown most of the desired effects of policy variables on the stated macroeconomic objective of a viable balance of payments in all four countries. However, while some effects of the policy changes on the objective variable are as expected and desirable, their impacts are insignificant in most cases. The growth objective was most effectively met in Western Samoa, balance of payments in Fiji and price stability in PNG. The theoretical arguments of the study also reveal that IMF-inspired policies have been rigid, inclined to the monetary approach to the balance of payments, but generally failed to take into account the preferences of people in a country and the impact on them. This analysis largely complements this theoretical contention, revealing slowing and sometimes reversing progress in incomes, real wages, food prices, employment creation, provision of health services and nutrition levels, and showing that IMF-inspired policies did not make a significant contribution towards enhancing the standard of living. The study concludes that solving the development problem of South Pacific countries requires more than simply targeting macroeconomic variables. IMF-inspired policies that take into account the macroeconomic as well as socio-economic variables are a first step in enhancing the growth and development of the developing countries in the South Pacific and providing long-term betterment for the people.

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  • Machine Learning for Adaptive Computer Game Opponents

    Miles, Jonathan David (2009)

    Masters thesis
    University of Waikato

    This thesis investigates the use of machine learning techniques in computer games to create a computer player that adapts to its opponent's game-play. This includes first confirming that machine learning algorithms can be integrated into a modern computer game without have a detrimental effect on game performance, then experimenting with different machine learning techniques to maximize the computer player's performance. Experiments use three machine learning techniques; static prediction models, continuous learning, and reinforcement learning. Static models show the highest initial performance but are not able to beat a simple opponent. Continuous learning is able to improve the performance achieved with static models but the rate of improvement drops over time and the computer player is still unable to beat the opponent. Reinforcement learning methods have the highest rate of improvement but the lowest initial performance. This limits the effectiveness of reinforcement learning because a large number of episodes are required before performance becomes sufficient to match the opponent.

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  • Play and learn : designing educational tools for children

    Nand, Kalpana (2012)

    Thesis
    Unitec

    Pedagogy is a dynamic science and needs to constantly change with time. During the last decade, there has been a substantial jump in terms of communications technology, the ubiquity of electronic devices capable of running applications, and having access to information on the internet. The technological developments have been able to grip a major part of society, particularly in the form of entertainment. One technology that has gripped society, particularly children, is playing of Computer based games, simulating either a real life scenario or a completely fictional one. The success rate of computer games in engaging and motivating children has prompted educational researchers to see if similar techniques can be used to engage children into learning related tasks. This thesis is one such study. In this thesis, we investigate what the appealing characteristics of effective computer games for children are, whether adding these appealing characteristics to an educational tool enhances children’s learning and whether children enjoy using the proposed educational tool with those characteristics embedded. Then we present the results of an experiment done on primary school children, in which a computer game was used as an educational tool to teach primary school curriculum areas of Numeracy and Te Reo. The study used computer gaming industry research works, in conjunction with primary school children’s perception of computer games, to identify the three most prominent features that make them popular. The identified features were feedback, challenge and graphics. These features were then embedded in an open source game, Who Wants to be a Millionaire, based on a popular TV game, and modified to teach the two curriculum areas to 9 and 10 year old children in a primary school in Auckland, over a period of 4 weeks. The effectiveness of the educational tool was measured using a pre-test and a post-test, as well as other indicators such as the frequency and duration of time on playing the game. The results showed that the features enriched game was more effective as an educational tool in both Numeracy and Te Reo curriculum areas, when compared to the version with minimal features, that is, feature devoid version. In the case of Numeracy, the increase in scores was twice as much as the feature devoid version and in the case of Te Reo it was five times as much. Similar results were also shown by other indicators such as time and frequency. In summary, the results of this thesis establishes evidence on aspects. Firstly, it identifies the most appealing characteristics of computer games from primary school children’s point of view, as well as literature. Secondly, the results show that the identified features can be effectively used to develop educational tools, similar to computer games that can enhance children’ learning. Finally, the results prove that the feature enriched game was more popular with children and they were more inclined to play this version of the game in future compared to the feature devoid version.

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  • "The Four Arts" : a prototype interactive game for engaging and interacting with Chinese culture using touch screen interfaces : an exegesis to be presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Masters of Design in Visual Communication Design, at Massey University, Albany, New Zealand

    Wang, Li

    Thesis
    Massey University

    The main objective of this project is to explore the possibilities of digital media, to help users understand traditional Chinese culture through an immersive virtual experience. Through playing an interactive game one experiences and explores Chinese culture. Chinese culture is rooted in an ancient history, which might be difficult for other cultures to understand clearly and fully (Moore, 1967). Chinese language is poetic but it can even be obscure to even native Chinese speakers. Full understanding of traditional Chinese philosophy can take many years of learning, reflection and instruction. “The Four Arts” aims to introduce Chinese culture through music (“Qin”), the Chinese traditional board game (“Qi”), Chinese traditional calligraphy (“Shu”), and Chinese traditional brush painting (“Hua”). The single-player game is based on the “Four Arts” and has been designed in Adobe Flash for a touch screen display. Users can experience traditional Chinese culture through play, which will help them to learn about key features of traditional Chinese culture and related philosophical concepts. To evaluate the effectiveness of the design, a qualitative methodology was applied for user testing. The results suggest that interactive computer game can help users appreciate and understand aspects of Chinese culture. The open-ended conversations with the participants have provided useful feedback on future design improvements for “The Four Arts”.

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  • Interactive Video Game Content Authoring using Procedural Methods

    Denny, Dacre Eliakim (2010)

    Masters thesis
    University of Waikato

    This thesis explores avenues for improving the quality and detail of game graphics, in the context of constraints that are common to most game development studios. The research begins by identifying two dominant constraints; limitations in the capacity of target gaming hardware/platforms, and processes that hinder the productivity of game art/content creation. From these constraints, themes were derived which directed the research‟s focus. These include the use of algorithmic or „procedural‟ methods in the creation of graphics content for games, and the use of an „interactive‟ content creation strategy, to better facilitate artist production workflow. Interactive workflow represents an emerging paradigm shift in content creation processes used by the industry, which directly integrates game rendering technology into the content authoring process. The primary motivation for this is to provide „high frequency‟ visual feedback that enables artists to see games content in context, during the authoring process. By merging these themes, this research develops a production strategy that takes advantage of „high frequency feedback‟ in an interactive workflow, to directly expose procedural methods to artists‟, for use in the content creation process. Procedural methods have a characteristically small „memory footprint‟ and are capable of generating massive volumes of data. Their small „size to data volume‟ ratio makes them particularly well suited for use in game rendering situations, where capacity constraints are an issue. In addition, an interactive authoring environment is well suited to the task of setting parameters for procedural methods, reducing a major barrier to their acceptance by artists. An interactive content authoring environment was developed during this research. Two algorithms were designed and implemented. These algorithms provide artists‟ with abstract mechanisms which accelerate common game content development processes; namely object placement in game environments, and the delivery of variation between similar game objects. In keeping with the theme of this research, the core functionality of these algorithms is delivered via procedural methods. Through this, production overhead that is associated with these content development processes is essentially offloaded from artists onto the processing capability of modern gaming hardware. This research shows how procedurally based content authoring algorithms not only harmonize with the issues of hardware capacity constraints, but also make the authoring of larger and more detailed volumes of games content more feasible in the game production process. Algorithms and ideas developed during this research demonstrate the use of procedurally based, interactive content creation, towards improving detail and complexity in the graphics of games.

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  • Audit judgments of revalued non-current assets

    Goodwin, J. D.

    Thesis
    Lincoln University

    The revaluation of non-current assets has become an accepted accounting practice in many countries including the United Kingdom, Australia and New Zealand. This practice has implications for the external auditor who must decide whether to accept a valuation as reasonable and how much evidence to collect to support the decision. This thesis represents the first study to examine audit decision making in this area. Because of the absence of prior research, a series of structured interviews was undertaken with audit partners to identify the main audit issues. The results of these interviews, together with the relevant literature, were used to identify some of the factors that may impact on audit judgments concerning revalued assets. Hypotheses were developed and two complementary experiments were designed to test them. These were based on the premise that client management may be motivated to revalue in order to improve the appearance of the balance sheet, thereby increasing the inherent risk of misstatement. A 2 x 2 between-subjects design was used for both experiments, and the dependent variables measured were estimates of the planned audit hours to be spent on the revalued assets and likelihood judgments that the valuations would be accepted as reasonable. Experiment One considered the situation where auditors are faced with two conflicting risks which are likely to exist simultaneously in the audit environment. These were the threat of litigation arising from the client's breach of a debt covenant and the risk of losing the client. The study examined auditors' responses to high and low levels of these risks on the audit of revalued owner-occupied property and an investment property. For the planned audit hours, results indicated a strong interaction effect between the two factors, with auditors planning to spend significantly more time on the audit of revalued assets when both the risk of breaching a debt covenant was high and the risk of losing the client was low. Similar results were found for the likelihood judgment that the valuations would be accepted as reasonable, except that for the investment property the results were only marginally significant. Experiment Two examined the impact of a proposal to issue shares to the public and the competence of the independent valuer on the audit of four classes of non-current assets. Results indicated that auditors would plan to spend longer on the audit of revalued assets when the client proposed to make a share issue and also when the competence of the valuer was lower. They were also less likely to accept the valuations as reasonable in these cases. However, an interaction effect between class of asset and competence of the valuer indicated that concern with some aspects of the evidence could override subjects' sensitivity to the competence of the valuer. An additional finding was a significant experience effect for the likelihood judgments, based on the number of audits, in which subjects had been involved, that had included asset revaluations. More experienced subjects were more likely than less experienced subjects to accept the valuations as reasonable.

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  • A Time for Ethics: Janet Frame and W. G. Sebald

    Carter, Josephine (2011)

    Doctoral thesis
    University of Otago

    'A Time for Ethics: Janet Frame and W. G. Sebald' identifies how literary texts which both respond to a traumatic past and adopt an openness towards the future enact an ethical stance. The recent "ethical turn" in a range of disciplines, among them literary studies, has led to a renewed interest in the ethical dimension of literature. The recent readings suggest, however, that a traditional humanist ethics continues to rely on a metaphysics of presence that forecloses an encounter of the human subject with alterity: the Other's time as well as the very otherness of time itself. Responding to the time-bound limitations of a humanist model of ethics, where ethical regard is only extended to those whom the subject encounters in its own time, Emmanuel Levinas proposes a form of ethics which originates in a model of subjectivity where the ego cannot claim exclusive control over time but, instead, is subject to a time that is beyond its self: the time of the Other. Using Levinas's philosophy as a theoretical framework, I examine how literary texts which foreground a time that both thematically and structurally undermines presence—the presence of characters and of language—can demonstrate an ethical response to the Other's plight. More specifically, I focus on the ways in which Janet Frame's and W. G. Sebald's works produce an ethical response to key traumatic events of the twentieth-century: colonialism and the Holocaust. Both writers demonstrate that a deconstruction of presence, the time of the self, not only enacts an ethical response to the Other of the past but also ensures a more just future. As such, their work undermines the primary premise of a metaphysics of presence—the sovereign subject—and produces a form of ethical responsibility which can encompass past and future generations. Foregrounding in language the violence that attends the self's subjection to the Other's time, Frame and Sebald gesture to the way in which a time that is unforeseeable and even traumatising produces a more just self. Such a self is mandatory if literature's ethical turn is to speak to a time beyond its own.

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  • Settlement Patterns and Indigenous Agency in Te Tau Ihu, 1770-1860

    Jackson, Moira Annette (2014)

    Doctoral thesis
    University of Otago

    Dynamic post-contact Maori settlement patterns in Te Tau Ihu o te Waka a Maui (the northern South Island) are used to investigate agency and the role of emergent nineteenth century European population on Maori landscape use. The study has shown that the settlement pattern changes observed in the 1770 to 1830 period were due mainly to agency and internal cultural drivers of change rather than by forces external to Aotearoa New Zealand. The conceptual framework is informed by social archaeological theory drawn from international culture contact studies. A geographic information system (GIS) was used to aid the analysis of temporal and spatial data derived from historical maps and charts augmented with archaeological, historical and ethnographic information.

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  • Mōteatea: He pātaka whakairinga kōrero nō Ngāti Rangiwewehi

    Paterson, Awatea (2013)

    Masters thesis
    University of Waikato

    Mai rā anō a Ngāi Tāua, te iwi Māori, e tuku iho ai i ngā mātauranga mā te ārero tupuna mai i tētehi whakatupuranga, ki tētehi whakatupuranga. Ko ngā mātauranga ka tukua iho ko ngā pūrākau, ko ngā karakia, ko ngā whakataukī, ā, ko ngā waiata hoki. Ko te pūtake o te rangahau nei he titiro pū ki te āhua o te noho o ngā mōteatea hei pātaka whakairinga kōrero mō Ngāti Rangiwewehi ake, nō reira ka āta tirohia ngā momo puna mōhiohio, ngā momo kura aweko ka whakairia ki te pakitara o te pātaka kōrero o Ngāti Rangiwewehi. Nā ngā mōteatea i tohu te wā, i kōrero mō te wāhi, i whakapūkete ngā mahi a ngā tūpuna o te wā i titoa ai te mōteatea. Nā, ko ngā waiata, ko ngā mōteatea koirā te ara whakapūkete kōrero ka wānangahia e te tuhinga nei. Mā te āta wetewete i tētehi mōteatea pū o Ngāti Rangiwewehi, ka hora i ngā kura āuki, i ngā māpihi pounamu, i ngā puna mātauranga o te iwi kua whakaemi mai ki roto i te mōteatea hei kōrero tuku iho mō te iwi o Ngāti Rangiwewehi, hei whakatauira ake hoki i te āhua o te noho o ngā mōteatea hei ara whakapūkete mātauranga.

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  • Na Tarimo i whakaari... Ko Rangiwewehi te iwi

    Flavell, James William Ben (1986)

    Masters thesis
    University of Waikato

    Ko ngā kōrero e whai ake nei, he mea kohikohi, he mea tuku mai ki ahau mō te iwi e kiia nei, ko Ngāti Rangiwewehi. Ko te rohe ki te taha raki o te Rotorua-nui-ā-kahumatamomoe to tūrangawaewae, otirā the rohe takahi o te iwi nei, i ngā rā o mua, nā, ahakoa he nui te whenua kua ngaro atu, kei konei tonu te papa kāinga mō tēnei karangatanga o Te Arawa waka, kei konei hoki tōna mauri, tōna mana, tōna wehi. Ko Ngāti Rangiwehei i ēnei rā, e rite tonu ana ki te tōtara nui. I tipu ake tēnei tōtara i te kākano i ruia i Rangiātea arā, i Hawaiki, i mānu mai ki Aotearoa nei, i puāwai mai, ā, kei te tipu tonu, kei te tuipu tonu. Nā, kei roto i tēnei rākau, ko ngā kōrero katoa mō te iwi nei, arā ko ngā whakapapa, ko ngā waiata ko ngā karakia, ko ngā pakiwaitara otirā ko ngā āhuatanga katoa e pā ana ki te iwi. Kei konei hoki ko te ira o te tangata e mau nei i ēnei āhuatanga nei. Ka tae ki te ngahuru, ka heke iho ngā rau rākau ka pirau, ka ngaro. Pēnei i te rākau nei, te hinga te tangata, ka kapohia e te ringa o Aituā, ā, ka ngaro. Ēhara i te mea ko te mauri o te tangata anake te mea e ngaro nei, ēngari, ko ōna mātauranga katoa hoki. Nā, matemate noa atu ngā koroua me ngākuia e mōhio tūturu ana ki ngā kōrero hōhonu tuku iho a Ngāti Rangiwewehi. Nō reira, ko tāku mahi, he kohi i ēnei kōrero, i mua i te ngaronga tonutanga o ngā kaumātua e ora ana, nei ngaro. Kua kohia nei e au ngā kōrero katoa ahakoa Māori ahakoa Pākehā, kia kitea ai, kia mārama ake ai ngā momo āhuatanga o tōku iwi. Ēhara tēnei i te me ngāwari, nō te mea, ko tēnei mea te mātaranga ahakoa he whakapapa rānei, he pakiwaitara rānei, he mea tino tapu ki te Māori, i te ao tawhito, ā, kei te pērā anō hoki i ēnei rā. Kua oti te tārai te tāhū o tēnei tuhituhinga e kore a taea te whakatārewa tēnei tāhū mehemea kāore, ōna pou kāore ōna here e tika ana. Otirā e kore e tū te whare kōreo, te tāhū whakaringa kōereo, mehemea kāore ōna kaupapa whenua, tangata, tae atu ki a Papatūānuku. Nō reira, koia tēnei ka tātaihia ake ngā kupu kōreroa muri ake nei, kia tutuki ai ngā tūmanako ngā wawata, a ngā whakatipuranga, mai, mai, mai i te pō ki ngā kaikōrero me te kaituhi. E ai ki te iwi, ko Rangiwewehi te tipuna o tēnei iwi te tamaiti a Tawakeheimoa rāua ko Te Aongahoro. Nā te mea, he karangatanga a Ngāti Rangiwewehi nō Te Arawa waka i hoki atu ai au ki ngā kōrero mō tēnei waka tapu. Tae rawa mai tēnei waka ki tēnei whenua, ka horapa hāere ngā tāngata i te mata o te whenua. I tōna wā, i tae atu ngā tīpuna ke Te Awahou awa, otirā ki te taha raki o Rotorua moana. Mai i taua wā, ka tīmata ngā āhuatanga katoa e pā ana ki tēnei iwi. Nā, ēhara tēnei tuhinga i te pukapuka hei whakaatu i te tūturutanga o ngā kōrero katoa o Ngāti Rangiwewehi, mā Ngāti Rangiwewehi hei whai atu, ēngari he kōrero kua kohia nei e au i ngā rangatira, i ngā tohunga, i ngā tāngata mōhio, i ngā whāea, i ngā kaumātua me ngā pukapuka a ngā Māori me ngā Pākehā. He pūtake kōrero noa iho tēnei mō Ngāti Rangiwewehi he tohu whakamaharatanga hoki ki ngā tīpuna, ki ngā mātua kua wehe atu nei ki te pō.

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  • Te Awa Atua, Te Awa Tapu, Te Awa Wahine: An examination of stories, ceremonies and practices regarding menstruation in the pre-colonial Māori world.

    Murphy, Ngāhuia (2011)

    Masters thesis
    University of Waikato

    This thesis examines Māori cosmological stories, ceremonies, and traditional practices regarding menstruation in pre-colonial Māori society. I use kaupapa Māori and mana wahine as a theoretical and methodological framework, contextualising these stories within Māori cultural paradigms.This is important because menstruation has been framed within deeply misogynist, colonial ideologies in some ethnographic accounts, distorting menstrual rites and practices beyond recognition. These interpretations have been used to inform colonialist narratives of female inferiority in traditional Māori society, attempting to change Native constructs of womanhood. Such narratives have been perpetuated in contemporary literature, reinforcing powerful discourses of menstrual pollution and female inferiority. This thesis is a challenge to such representations. By examining menstrual stories located in Māori cosmologies, and investigating tribal histories, oral literatures, ceremonies and rites, I argue that menstruation was seen as a medium of whakapapa (genealogy) that connected Māori women to our pantheon of atua (supernatural beings). A study of ancient menstrual rites, recorded in tribal songs and chants, reveal that menstrual blood was used for psychic and spiritual protection. These examples unveil striking Indigenous constructs of womanhood that transform colonialist interpretations and radically challenge notions of female inferiority and menstrual pollution. I maintain in this thesis that presenting menstruation and menstrual blood as putrid is a politically motivated act of colonial violence that specifically targets the source of our continuity as Indigenous People, the whare tangata (house of humanity – womb of women). I pose the question ‘if menstrual blood symbolises whakapapa, what does it mean to present it as ‘unclean’ and how do such representations cut across the politics of tino rangatiratanga (autonomy)?’ Through in-depth semi-structured interviews, kōrero (dialogue), and wānanga (series of conversations) with Māori women, including cultural experts, scholars, artists, and mana wahine exponents, I gather a collection of ceremonies, stories, and wisdoms that reclaim Māori spiritualities which celebrate menstruation as divine. Within the context of a colonial history of marginalisation, this work is an activist site of political resistance which takes a step towards re-threading the feminine strands in the spiritual fabric of our world, torn asunder by the ideological imposition of a colonial, Christian male god. I argue, that menstruation is a potent site of decolonisation, cultural reclamation, and resistance toward the perpetuation of colonial hegemony.

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  • Augmented Community Telerehabilitation Intervention to Improve Outcomes for People With Stroke. ACTIV: A Randomised Controlled Trial and Qualitative Enquiry

    Saywell, Nicola Lesley

    Doctoral thesis
    Auckland University of Technology

    For people to achieve and maintain the best possible outcomes after stroke, a level of rehabilitation input is required that cannot be met by current services. Telerehabilitation, the provision of rehabilitation at a distance using telecommunication technology, has been proposed as a way to extend the reach of rehabilitation, particularly to those for whom geography, poverty or disability preclude easy access to rehabilitation facilities. The difficulty with many potential modes of delivering telerehabilitation, is that they are expensive and complex, requiring significant technical input for satisfactory use. The use of readily-accessible telecommunication technology (landline telephones or mobile phones) to deliver stroke rehabilitation remotely was mooted as a possible solution, based on findings of feasibility and acceptability of use, in a number of small-scale studies in other populations. The idea was investigated using a systematic review, which showed that while mobile phones were almost ubiquitous in New Zealand, there had been minimal investigation of their use in stroke rehabilitation. A novel intervention was developed, based on the literature review and the clinical experience of the research team. Augmented Community Telerehabilitation Intervention (ACTIV) is a structured 6-month programme, delivered by physiotherapists using a combination of face-to-face sessions, telephone contact and text message reminders to support rehabilitation for people following stroke after standard rehabilitation has ended. A randomised controlled trial was undertaken, to compare the effectiveness of ACTIV with a usual care control, to improve outcomes for people with stroke. Measures of physical function and self-efficacy were taken immediately after ACTIV and 6-months after the end of the programme. A qualitative enquiry was also undertaken with a sample of those who had completed ACTIV, to explore the participant experience. The results of the trial showed that ACTIV improved physical function in people undertaking ACTIV as long as they undertook at least 50% of the programme. However, the significant improvement in physical function immediately after the programme was not sustained 6-months after cessation. A significant improvement was found in participation immediately after ACTIV, which also was not sustained at 6-months post-intervention. The qualitative enquiry showed that despite the first impression of ACTIV not being proper physiotherapy, there was a strong message that participants felt they had not been left to struggle alone and gained a number of benefits from the therapeutic relationship they developed with the physiotherapist during ACTIV. Participants also communicated strong feelings of making progress and a very clear impression of knowing what they wanted from rehabilitation. This was not the participant-generated goals, decided with the physiotherapists at the start of the programme, but a desire to keep on making small forward steps towards normality. Findings from the ACTIV study showed that a small input can make a significant difference for people after stroke but that the longed for behaviour-change leading to absolute independence from any support may be an unrealistic expectation. ACTIV may need to be extended in partnership with non-governmental agencies to continue a level of support that ensures benefits are maintained.

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