757 results for Masters, 2009

  • Bullying the boss : upwards bullying as a response to destructive supervisory leadership in the workplace.

    Wallace, Belinda (2009)

    Masters thesis
    University of Canterbury Library

    Despite a growing acknowledgement of the negative outcomes for organizational functioning and the health and well-being of individuals attributable to workplace bullying, research into the phenomenon of upward bullying (supervisors bullied by their subordinates), particularly its aetiology, has received modest attention. The aim of the present study was to explore the link between destructive supervisory leadership and upward bullying and the mediating or moderating roles of perceived interactional justice, continuance commitment and workrelated meaning in this relationship. Two hundred and eight post-graduate students and two hundred and four work-based subordinate employees completed an on-line survey of their perceptions of the leadership style and interactional justice of their immediate supervisor, the levels of their own continuance commitment and work-related meaning, and the frequency with which they engaged in specific bullying behaviours targeting their supervisor. As expected, subordinate perceptions of destructive supervisory leadership were strongly associated with an increased incidence of upward bullying, with the strength of this relationship partially mediated by subordinate perceptions of interactional justice within supervisory interactions. In addition, subordinate levels of continuance commitment and work-related meaning moderated the relationship between subordinate perceptions of interactional justice and the incidence of upward bullying, such that this relationship was intensified when either, or both the level of subordinate continuance commitment or work-related meaning was higher. This paper offers preliminary support for conceptualizing upwards bullying as a retaliatory response to destructive leadership, however due to a reliance on cross-sectional data, inferences of causality cannot be made. Practical implications and directions for future research are discussed.

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  • Analysis of forecasted travel time benefits against those realised

    Keshaboina, Akhylesh (2009)

    Masters thesis
    University of Canterbury Library

    There is lack of knowledge on how well the transport projects work once implemented. This research project seeks to investigate how the forecasted benefits claimed during the economic appraisal of the projects compare with the actual benefits realised. This study carried out a literature review on how the travel time benefits are forecasted for transport investment projects and comments on general to specific issues like value of travel time, international and local experiences of forecasting travel time savings to use of traffic modelling in forecasting travel time savings. The study also carried out a post-construction evaluation of projects on a diverse range of transport projects from realignments, grade separated interchange to the installation of HOV lanes and urban bypass project. Post-construction analysis was carried out and then compared against those assumed for the pre-construction evaluation and possible reasons for the differences were discussed.

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  • Analysis of forecasted travel time benefits against those realised

    Keshaboina, Akhylesh (2009)

    Masters thesis
    University of Canterbury Library

    There is lack of knowledge on how well the transport projects work once implemented. This research project seeks to investigate how the forecasted benefits claimed during the economic appraisal of the projects compare with the actual benefits realised. This study carried out a literature review on how the travel time benefits are forecasted for transport investment projects and comments on general to specific issues like value of travel time, international and local experiences of forecasting travel time savings to use of traffic modelling in forecasting travel time savings. The study also carried out a post-construction evaluation of projects on a diverse range of transport projects from realignments, grade separated interchange to the installation of HOV lanes and urban bypass project. Post-construction analysis was carried out and then compared against those assumed for the pre-construction evaluation and possible reasons for the differences were discussed.

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  • The Development of a Low-Cost Microfluidic Magnetic Separation System

    Smith, Geoffrey (2009)

    Masters thesis
    Victoria University of Wellington

    Microfluidic systems show excellent promise for analytical applications, due to their ability to rapidly process minute sample quantities with high sensitivity. At the same time, functionalised superparamagnetic magnetic microbeads and nanoparticles have emerged as useful substrates for biomedical applications such as bioassays, fuelling research into tools for the manipulation of magnetic particles in microfluidic channels. This thesis describes the design, fabrication and evaluation of microfluidic systems for the separation of magnetic microbeads and nanoparticles. Microfluidic devices were produced in polydimethylsiloxane using a low-cost rapid prototyping process. Channels 300μm or greater in width were accurately reproduced using this method. Laminar flow was observed in the channels of these devices, allowing two-phase flow to be used for separation purposes. Magnetic field gradients of 25-500 T/m were generated in the microchannels using either permanent magnets or soft magnetic materials. The performance of a permanent magnet-based separation system was evaluated, and it was found that the system could extract magnetic microbeads with an efficiency of up to 75%. A limited ability to separate magnetic microbeads on the basis of magnetic moment and/or particle size was also demonstrated.

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  • The Design of an IEEE 1588 End-to-End Transparent Ethernet Switch

    Gordon, Caleb (2009)

    Masters thesis
    Victoria University of Wellington

    In measurement and control systems there is often a need to synchronise distributed clocks. Traditionally, synchronisation has been achieved using a dedicated medium to convey time information, typically using the IRIG-B serial protocol. The precision time protocol (IEEE 1588) has been designed as an improvement to current methods of synchronisation within a distributed network of devices. IEEE 1588 is a message based protocol that can be implemented across packet based networks including, but not limited to, Ethernet. Standard Ethernet switches introduce a variable delay to packets that inhibits path delay measurements. Transparent switches have been introduced to measure and adjust for packet delay, thus removing the negative effects that these variations cause. This thesis describes the hardware and firmware design of an IEEE 1588 transparent end-to-end Ethernet switch for Tekron International Ltd based in Lower Hutt, New Zealand. This switch has the ability to monitor all Ethernet traffic, identify IEEE 1588 timing packets, measure the delay that these packets experience while passing through the switch, and account for this delay by adjusting a time-interval field of the packet as it is leaving the switch. This process takes place at the operational speed of the port, and without introducing significant delay. Time-interval measurements can be made using a high-precision timestamp unit with a resolution of 1 ns. The total jitter introduced by this measurement process is just 4.5 ns through a single switch.

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  • Synthesis and Thermal Treatment of Lithium- and Magnesium-Containing Geopolymers

    O'Connor, Sean (2009)

    Masters thesis
    Victoria University of Wellington

    Geopolymers are a class of cementitious aluminosilicate materials that are receiving an increasing amount of attention due to their potential applications in toxic waste remediation and as construction materials. They are composed of a network of crosslinked silicate and aluminate tetrahedra with charge-balancing alkali cations and are therefore similar in composition to alkali aluminosilicate zeolites. They are, however, x-ray amorphous.¹⁻⁴ They are formed by the dissolution of a solid aluminosilicate in a solution of alkali hydroxide or alkali silicate to form aluminosilicate ions which subsequently polymerise. The effects of adding magnesium to metakaolin geopolymer systems was examined. Magnesium was added as soluble magnesium salts and as magnesium oxide and hydroxide. When added as a soluble salt, an amorphous magnesium (alumino)silicate with a lower degree of silicate polymerisation than a geopolymer is formed. When added as the oxide or hydroxide, hydrotalcite is formed. In both cases, the product is produced alongside a separate geopolymer phase. A magnesiumcontaining geopolymer phase was not found in either. When heated to 1200°C, geopolymers with magnesium oxide added bloated to form lightweight foams. Lithium analogues of conventional metakaolin geopolymer systems with a range of lithium, aluminium, silicon and water contents were examined. Systems with molar ratios similar to those of commonly studied sodium and potassium metakaolin geopolymers produce self-pelletised lithium zeolites. The zeolite formed was Li-EDI, the lithium analogue of zeolite F. This is the first reported synthesis directly from metakaolin. True lithium geopolymers are found not to form in the systems examined. The zeolite bodies react to form β-eucryptite and β-spodumene at temperatures from 800 – 1350°C. The use of aluminium hydroxide and amorphoud silica rather than aluminosilicates as raw materials for the formation of potassium geopolymers was found to produce geopolymers with embedded grains of unreacted silica and aluminium hydroxide.

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  • The value relevance of international financial reporting standards : evidence from New Zealand

    Bridges, Caroline (2009)

    Masters thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

    In this thesis, I examine the value relevance of financial statements for companies that chose to voluntarily adopt International Financial Reporting Standards in New Zealand between 2005 and 2007, prior to it becoming mandatory for all companies. Specifically, I document the relative and incremental value relevance, respectively, of voluntarily adopting New Zealand International Financial Reporting Standards as opposed to domestically produced New Zealand Financial Reporting Standards on the book value of equity and net income for a sample of 34 companies. The main results of the empirical analysis find that (i) there is no evidence to suggest that the value relevance of the book value of equity and net income calculated under New Zealand International Financial Reporting Standards, when taken together, is greater than the combined value relevance of the book value of equity and net income calculated under domestically produced New Zealand Financial Reporting Standards (i.e., New Zealand International Financial Reporting Standards do not have relative value relevance); (ii) the book value of equity calculated under New Zealand International Financial Reporting Standards does not have incremental value relevance over and above the book value of equity calculated under domestically produced New Zealand Financial Reporting Standards; and (iii) net income calculated under New Zealand International Financial Reporting Standards does not have incremental value relevance over and above net income calculated under domestically produced New Zealand Financial Reporting Standards. I also carry out an analysis of the conservativeness of the net income figure measured under New Zealand International Financial Reporting Standards, and find that there is no significant difference in the timeliness or asymmetric timeliness (i.e., conditional conservatism) between net income calculated under New Zealand International Financial Reporting Standards and domestically produced New Zealand Financial Reporting Standards. Overall, my thesis finds little evidence that the voluntary adoption of New Zealand International Financial Reporting Standards provides accounting information that is more value relevant to that under domestically produced New Zealand Financial Reporting Standards, which is consistent with the conclusion of Hung & Subramanyam (2007) albeit in the German institutional setting. Hence, the benefits of early adoption of International Financial Reporting Standards in New Zealand are questionable.

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  • Mild Traumatic Brain Injury among New Zealand Children: Improving Quality of Care in the Emergency Department Setting

    Sharpe, S (2009)

    Masters thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

    Aim: To examine the occurrence of traumatic brain injury (TBI) among New Zealand children and to investigate the quality of healthcare delivered in the emergency department (ED) setting to children with mild TBI. Methods: A systematic review of the literature regarding the occurrence of TBI among New Zealand children was undertaken alongside a clinical audit examining the quality of healthcare delivered to children with mild TBI who were discharged home after assessment in a children's hospital ED in 2007. Medical records of a random sample of 60 children aged <15 years stratified by ethnicity and age were reviewed. ED processes of care for mild TBI were compared with best practice standards derived from guideline recommendations. Findings: The systematic literature review revealed important gaps in knowledge regarding the burden of mild TBI among New Zealand children. The clinical audit identified that processes of care designed to manage potentially life-threatening acute complications (e.g. selection of children for CT scanning to identify intracranial haemorrhage) were consistent with best practice standards. However gaps existed between current and best practice for aspects of care that could minimise risks of disability. For example, despite a high standard of documentation of data required for estimating the probability of TBI, this information was not applied to clearly identify children with definite or possible TBI. In addition, documentation deficiencies raised concerns regarding whether information is provided in a manner supportive of the cultures and languages of families/wh?nau, missed opportunities for injury prevention advice, and the adequacy of follow-up plans in the community. Conclusion: The identified gaps in research knowledge and quality of care in the ED setting require attention to develop effective integrated services that minimise the risk of disability following childhood TBI.

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  • Primary teachers' understandings of technological knowledge.

    Patterson, Moira (2009)

    Masters thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

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  • Maori Women in Prison : Nga Wahine Ngaro

    Quince, Khylee (2009)

    Masters thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

    Major thesis assessing Corrections policy and practice in respect of Maori female inmates in New Zealand prisons.

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  • Over the Great Wall: A Qualitative Descriptive Study of the Experiences and Preferences of Chinese Immigrant Families when Receiving Hospice Services in New Zealand

    Hathaway, Joanna Clare (2009)

    Masters thesis
    Victoria University of Wellington

    This thesis discusses the background, processes, findings and recommendations of a qualitative descriptive study to explore and describe the experiences and preferences of Chinese immigrant families when receiving hospice services in New Zealand (NZ). The study arose from clinical practice questions about how hospice services were providing end-of-life care to the growing number of Chinese immigrants in NZ. With the assistance of a Cultural Advisor and a team of professional interpreters, eight bereaved Chinese immigrants living in the greater Auckland area who had cared for a terminally ill close family member with hospice service involvement were interviewed using a semi-structured approach. Participants were asked to describe their family support in NZ as well as their experiences of referral to a hospice, the types of care and treatment provided, communication processes between staff and the patient/family, care in the patient's last days of life, comparisons with care provided in their country of origin and suggestions for NZ hospice service improvements. Four key themes emerged: 1) Unfamiliar territory - participants were unfamiliar with the role or services of hospice and staff's lack of awareness of Chinese customs had led to distressing situations; 2) Service experiences and expectations - while some services were deemed useful others were not; participants had expected more medical treatments to manage the patient's symptoms; deaths in in-patient settings were less concerning to families and were preferred to deaths at home; 3) Support to cope - participants wanted more psychological support from hospice and regarded the maintenance of hope as a key component of a good death; 4) Uncovering sensitive information - families wanted to be consulted before sensitive information was discussed with patients and they preferred information to be uncovered slowly and gently to avoid causing the patient psychological harm. Recommendations for hospice service development included: improved access to information for families; greater provision of support services, especially for patients and families at home; education for hospice staff about Chinese culture and customs; options for in-patient admission in the last days of life; and the involvement of families in disclosure decisions. It is hoped that by responding to the experiences and preferences shared by participants, hospice services will be better equipped to address the end-of-life care needs of Chinese immigrant families.

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  • Haka and Hula Representations in Tourism

    O'Carroll, Acushla Deanne (2009)

    Masters thesis
    Victoria University of Wellington

    Haka and hula performances tell stories that represent histories, traditions, protocols and customs of the Maori and Hawai'ian people and give insight into their lives and the way that they see the world. The way that haka and hula performances are represented is being tested, as the dynamics of the tourism industry impact upon and influence the art forms. If allowed, these impacts and influences can affect the performances and thus manipulate or change the way that haka and hula are represented. Through an understanding of the impacts and influences of tourism on haka and hula performances, as well as an exploration of the cultures' values, cultural representations effective existence within the tourism industry can be investigated. This thesis will incorporate the perspectives of haka and hula practitioners and discuss the impacts and influences on haka and hula performances in tourism. The research will also explore and discuss the ways in which cultural values and representations can effectively co-exist within tourism.

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  • 'I Thought It Was Just a Pimple': A Study Examining the Parents of Pacific Children's Understanding and Management of Skin Infections in the Home

    Ete-Rasch, Elaine (2009)

    Masters thesis
    Victoria University of Wellington

    Hospital admissions of young children due to serious skin infections have increased throughout the Greater Wellington Region over the years. Pacific children make up a high proportion of these hospital admissions. While the literature suggests that these admissions are highly preventable through proper care and management of skin sores at home, little is known about parents' knowledge and practices at home when a child is known to have a skin sore. This descriptive exploratory study explored the management of skin sores and wound care in the homes of 11 Pacific children from the Greater Wellington region prior to being admitted with skin infections. Mothers of 11 children who were aged between three months and 15 years were interviewed using a semi-structure interview schedule that was designed to understand parents' knowledge, understanding and perceptions of wound care, how the early signs of infections were recognised and where and when to seek medical help. The availability of first aid kits and their utilisation by families in their homes as simple preventative measures were also explored. The interviews were transcribed and a descriptive qualitative content analysis process undertaken. Overall the study found that parents engaged in active roles in an effort to maintain and sustain the wellbeing of their children once the signs and symptoms of skin infections were identified. The key findings are categorised under four main themes, 1) Parents in action; 2) The search for healing and cure; 3) Household activities; and 4) Health information for parents. Implications and recommendations for health professionals centre on the need for improved information for parents and for a review of practice surrounding skin infections in primary health care settings. Relevant information on skin infections on children to be addressed in the Well Child Tamariki Ora booklet is also recommended.

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  • Impact Evaluation of a 'Brief Intervention Program' for Clients who Deliberately Self-Harm

    Aquin, Edward Herman (2009)

    Masters thesis
    Victoria University of Wellington

    Deliberate self harm (DSH) and suicide rates are recognised internationally, nationally and locally as an increasing trend. The financial and emotional cost to society highlights the need for providing services that aim to reduce the likelihood of further deliberate self harm. The emergency department (ED) is often the entry point for service provision to clients who deliberate self harm. A reduction in re-presentations for acts of DSH to the ED would greatly reduce the strain on this essential part of the public healthcare system. It is vital that the services developed to address DSH are evaluated to facilitate informed decisions regarding program sustainability or improvement. Study aim: This study aims to evaluate a 'brief intervention program' (BIP) designed to address the needs of clients who presented with or were at risk of engaging in act(s) of deliberate self harm. The intention of the program was to reduce repetitive acts of DSH and to assist the clients in developing better coping strategies. Study design: This study uses a pluralistic evaluation research design to conduct a program evaluation. The 'line of enquiry' is guided by the Impact Evaluation framework by Owen (2006).The seven steps of the framework were used to organise, categorise, analyse and discuss the program's outcomes in this study. The pluralistic or mixed design used pre-existing quantitative client file data and qualitative data collected from a staff questionnaire. A total number of 40 client files were examined for the data analysis. Six out of the ten staff members agreed to participate in a survey that sought information about the program's implementation. Findings: Results from the quantitative data analysis found that 82.1% of clients did not re-present to the ED with a repeated act of DSH for a period of six months following initial referral and treatment. The mean average of days to follow up was 5.54. Outcome measurements via pre and post PANSI scores found an improvement in the client's resiliency. Results from the repeated measures t-test: p< .05. Qualitative data analysis found that by expanding the referral base that stakeholders perceived it was more difficult for clients to be followed up within five days from their referral date. Other suggestions pertained to increasing the resources of the program for sustainability. Contribution: The use of program evaluation strategies compliments current trends in healthcare to employ pluralistic or mixed method designs. Broader lines of enquiry lead to more informed decisions regarding program sustainability or improvement.

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  • Consumer Satisfaction with Emergency Department Nursing: a Descriptive Correlational Study

    Buckley, Clare Alison (2009)

    Masters thesis
    Victoria University of Wellington

    This descriptive, correlational study was designed to describe levels of consumer satisfaction with emergency department (ED) nursing and to identify the key determinants of satisfaction with ED nursing in a regional New Zealand hospital. The relationship between satisfaction with ED nursing and with overall satisfaction with the ED visit was also explored. Satisfaction is an important indicator of the quality of healthcare and an understanding of satisfaction and its determinants has the potential to improve healthcare services and consumer health outcomes. The study employed a survey design using the Consumer Emergency Care Satisfaction Scale (CECSS) which is an internationally recognised tool that has demonstrable reliability and validity. It consists of 19 items divided between two subscales - Caring and Teaching. Respondents indicate on a five point Likert scale the extent to which they agree or disagree with each item. In addition to the 19 items in the scale, respondents were also asked to provide some consumer characteristic data and to answer two open-ended questions. The survey was posted to a convenience sample of 410 ED attendees within 24-48 hours of their visit to the emergency department. The final sample comprised 100 completed or partially completed surveys. The majority (n = 65, 88%) were either satisfied or very satisfied with ED nursing. There were no statistically significant relationships between any consumer characteristics and satisfaction; however the following visit characteristics were demonstrated to affect levels of satisfaction - triage category, self-rated acuity, the times consumers arrived at and were discharged from the ED, being able to differentiate between health professionals, being kept informed about the visit and any delays, length of stay (LOS), and number of previous visits to the emergency department. There was a strong positive correlation (r = 0.571, p = 0.000) between consumer satisfaction with ED nursing and with overall satisfaction with the visit. Thematic analysis of the data from the question about what consumers liked about ED nursing revealed four themes - personal qualities of the nurse, professional qualities of the nurse, interpersonal qualities of the nurse, and miscellaneous comments. Thematic analysis of the data from the question about what the nurse could have done to make the visit better also revealed four themes - nothing, staffing/service, information giving, and the environment. The study concludes that ED consumers want to know who their nurses are and to have nurses who communicate well with them and keep them informed about their visit. The most significant implications and challenges for researchers are in exploring the area around the consumer health journey as it is these visit characteristics that this study has demonstrated affect levels of satisfaction with ED nursing.

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  • CISG Through the Willem C Vis Moot casebook: Seventeen Years of the CISG Evolution Explored Through Annual Global Discussion

    Baide, Ana Barbara (2009)

    Masters thesis
    Victoria University of Wellington

    This paper explores the evolution of the United Nations Convention on the International Sale of Goods (referred to throughout the text as the "CISG" or the "Convention") jurisprudence through the Willem C Vis Moot ("Vis Moot") casebook. It analyses the CISG issues raised and explored in the seventeen years of the Willem C Vis Moot and draws out notable trends and key themes. Upon the analysis of the trends and themes which have arisen over the past seventeen years, the dissertation discusses how the Vis Moot problems, as well as the winning memoranda, reflect and encapsulate the evolution and developments in the worldwide application and interpretation of the CISG in those areas. The analysis of the Vis Moot problems is thus used as a tool to consider the worldwide jurisprudential developments on the CISG over the past two decades, and identify both those aspects of the Convention that have benefited from considerable analysis, and where comprehensive jurisprudence has already developed, as well as the "gap" areas where further work is required in order to ensure the CISG evolves alongside technological, social, political and legal developments affecting international sale of goods contracts. The dissertation concludes by drawing out the notable trends illustrated by, and set against the backdrop of, the Vis Moot casebook, and the consequent implications of such trends on the current state ofCISG jurisprudence. In particular, these trends and outcomes are assessed as against the overall spirit of the Convention and its goal of achieving, or seeking to achieve, uniform application of rules on international sale of goods contracts. This assessment seeks to capture how this goal of uniformity has been achieved to-date, and where the upcoming challenges may lie in the coming years. Finally, the paper considers the overall importance and impact of the Vis Moot, as an annual global event with manifold benefits, on the interpretation, promotion and development of the CISG.

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  • A Cost Benefit Analysis of Secondary Glazing as a Retrofit Alternative for New Zealand Homes

    Smith, Nick (2009)

    Masters thesis
    Victoria University of Wellington

    Homes with single glazing represent a large majority of the New Zealand housing stock. With the recent changes to the NZ Building Code Clause H1 Energy Efficiency, new homes require higher glazing thermal performance. This will lead to an increased need for cost effective methods to improve window thermal performance in existing single glazed homes without completely replacing the windows, which includes 'secondary' glazing. There are several secondary glazing options available including 'stick-on' plastic glazing as well as aluminium framed glass solutions that are installed inside the existing joinery. Secondary glazing is marketed as a cost effective alternative to insulated glazing units, providing both improved acoustic and thermal insulation to existing windows. There is little information regarding the in-use performance and cost benefits of secondary glazing in New Zealand. This thesis explores the efficacy of the secondary glazing products when installed in existing single pane frames. A guarded hotbox was used to make thermal resistance measurements on a typical single glazed aluminium window with timber reveal liner. Four common secondary glazing systems were retrofitted into the window - (1) thin plastic film; (2) magnetically-attached acrylic sheet; (3) aluminium framed secondary glazing; and (4) aluminium framed low emissivity (low-E) secondary glazing. Models of 'typical' New Zealand homes created in the ALF building thermal simulation programme were used to explore the heating energy savings and cost benefits provided by the different secondary glazing systems in a range of locations. Of the tested products, the low-E secondary glazing produces the largest cost-benefits. At current energy and material costs, secondary glazing was found to not be a financially viable solution in warmer climates such as Auckland. In cooler climates such as Christchurch and Dunedin, secondary glazing was found to be a cost effective retrofit alternative for existing single glazed homes

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  • Exploring Cyber-Bullying: a Retrospective Study of First Year University Students

    Parsonson, Katrina (2009)

    Masters thesis
    Victoria University of Wellington

    This was a retrospective study of cyber-bullying. Students enrolled in a first year course were selected to provide opinions on the issue of cyber-bullying as it pertained to social networking sites and young people. A mixed methods approach was applied to this study. Questionnaires provided quantitative data, and a focus group provided data for qualitative analysis. It was evident that students felt that cyber-bullying was not as prevalent as traditional bullying; however, it was identified as a serious issue. In relation to gender, traditional bullying was considered to be a problem for boys, more than cyber-bullying, whereas for girls cyber-bullying was considered to be a problem, more than traditional bullying. Social networking sites, solely, were not common tools used in cyber-bullying. Generally cell phones or a combination of cell phones and social networking sites were used. It was determined the age group at most risk from cyber-bullying to be early high school. Raising awareness of cyber-bullying was considered essential for prevention.

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  • Muslim Women in Wellington: Discursive Construction of Religious Identity in Personal Narratives.

    Jessen, Brie (2009)

    Masters thesis
    Victoria University of Wellington

    Using a social constructionist framework this thesis investigates the construction of Muslim women's religious identity through an analysis of the discursive and linguistic features of their narratives. Muslim identity in the west is increasingly becoming a research focus for the social sciences and sociological and anthropological research on Muslim identity has much to offer sociolinguistics. Similarly, sociolinguistic research on ethnicity in narrative can also contribute to understanding the position of Muslim women. Following a review of the relevant research, the methods of data collection, transcription and analysis are described. An ethnographic approach, combined with small group discussions, was used to elicit data from eight Muslim women in the Wellington region. The women's narratives are analysed with a focus on the linguistic and discursive strategies used in identity construction. Three different dimensions of identity were identified: (i) comparative identity contrasts Muslim/Islamic identity with the West, constructing the self in opposition to the 'other'; (ii) Islamic identity is constructed on an intellectual/philosophical level, asking 'who am I within my religion, and how do I relate to the wider concept of Islam?'; (iii) Muslim identity focuses on the practical/physical level, integrating the guidelines and rituals of Islam into daily life; it asks 'how do I go about my everyday life as a Muslim?'. Patterns and similarities, as well as differences between narratives in each category are identified and discussed with particular reference to the discursive and linguistic features, which characterise each. In addition, attention is paid to the linguistic and discursive devices used to express Muslim identity through the subversion of societal discourses. Finally, suggestions for further research are presented.

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  • A Signal Detection Approach to the Perception of Affective Prosody in Anxious Individuals: A Developmental Study

    Humphrey, Megan (2009)

    Masters thesis
    Victoria University of Wellington

    The present study used a Signal Detection approach to the study of prosody perception in children and adults who self-reported high levels of anxiety. Seventy-one children aged eight and nine years, and 85 adults listened to filtered speech and were required to discriminate angry, fearful and happy tones of voice. Anxiety levels were not associated with perception of affective prosody in adults. Levels of anxiety were related to children's criterion but not sensitivity to prosody. Highly anxious children were significantly more liberal in reporting fearful prosody compared to low anxious children. Analyses of total responses suggest that this criterion is reflective of an interpretation bias as opposed to a response bias. Given that the interpretation bias was observed in children and not adults, it is possible that the bias may mark a vulnerability to develop further anxiety. This is consistent with previous experimental findings in other modalities as well as integrative models of anxiety development that identify such cognitive biases as predisposing factors. Furthermore, regardless of anxiety level, children were comparable to adults in their accuracy for fearful prosody, yet were significantly poorer than adults in their accuracy for angry and happy prosody. This suggests that fear may be one of the first emotions children learn to identify.

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