WorldWideScience

Sample records for evaluating improvement strategies

  1. Evaluation of two communication strategies to improve udder health management

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jansen, J.; Renes, R.J.; Lam, T.J.G.M.

    2010-01-01

    Worldwide, programs to improve udder health are implemented using communication tools and methods that inform and persuade dairy farmers. This study evaluated 2 communication strategies used in a mastitis control program in the Netherlands. To improve farmers’ udder health management, tools such as

  2. Evaluation of two communication strategies to improve udder health management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jansen, J; Renes, R J; Lam, T J G M

    2010-02-01

    Worldwide, programs to improve udder health are implemented using communication tools and methods that inform and persuade dairy farmers. This study evaluated 2 communication strategies used in a mastitis control program in the Netherlands. To improve farmers' udder health management, tools such as instruction cards, treatment plans, checklists and software were developed following an argument-based comprehensive "central route." These tools were used during on-farm study group meetings for farmers organized by veterinarians and also during individual veterinarian-farmer interactions. The second strategy aimed at adopting a single management practice to increase the use of milking gloves during milking. This approach followed a straightforward "peripheral" route that used implicit persuasion techniques. Results of an online survey of 374 Dutch dairy farmers showed that most farmers were able and willing to use the educational management tools to increase udder health on their farms. They evaluated the tools positively regardless of the mastitis problems on their farms. This seems to indicate that the central route of communication is most effective when farmers are motivated to work on udder health in general. Results of repeated random telephone surveys before, during, and after the campaign on the use of milking gloves showed that the use of gloves increased from 20.9 to 42.0% of the respondents. Respondents' opinions about milking gloves also changed favorably, indicating that a relatively short peripheral campaign on a single action can have a sustained effect on farmers' behavior. Both communication strategies seem to be potentially successful in disseminating knowledge to a specific target group of farmers and in changing that group's behavior. However, to reach as many farmers as possible, the strategies should be combined. When optimizing these strategies, both the farmers' motivation to work on udder health and the aim of the campaign should be considered

  3. Performance in Physiology Evaluation: Possible Improvement by Active Learning Strategies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montrezor, Luís H.

    2016-01-01

    The evaluation process is complex and extremely important in the teaching/learning process. Evaluations are constantly employed in the classroom to assist students in the learning process and to help teachers improve the teaching process. The use of active methodologies encourages students to participate in the learning process, encourages…

  4. Performance in physiology evaluation: possible improvement by active learning strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montrezor, Luís H

    2016-12-01

    The evaluation process is complex and extremely important in the teaching/learning process. Evaluations are constantly employed in the classroom to assist students in the learning process and to help teachers improve the teaching process. The use of active methodologies encourages students to participate in the learning process, encourages interaction with their peers, and stimulates thinking about physiological mechanisms. This study examined the performance of medical students on physiology over four semesters with and without active engagement methodologies. Four activities were used: a puzzle, a board game, a debate, and a video. The results show that engaging in activities with active methodologies before a physiology cognitive monitoring test significantly improved student performance compared with not performing the activities. We integrate the use of these methodologies with classic lectures, and this integration appears to improve the teaching/learning process in the discipline of physiology and improves the integration of physiology with cardiology and neurology. In addition, students enjoy the activities and perform better on their evaluations when they use them. Copyright © 2016 The American Physiological Society.

  5. Evaluation Strategy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Coto Chotto, Mayela; Wentzer, Helle; Dirckinck-Holmfeld, Lone

    2009-01-01

    The paper presents an evaluation strategy based on deliberate ideals and principles of dialogue design. The evaluation strategy is based on experiential phenomenology taking the point of departure for design and evaluation processes in the experienced practitioners themselves. The article presents...... the evaluation strategy and methodology of a research project Making Online Path to Enter new Markets, MOPEM. It is an EU-research project with partners from different Educational Institutions of Technology and Business in five European Countries....

  6. Unlocking the "black box" of practice improvement strategies to implement surgical safety checklists: a process evaluation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gillespie, Brigid M; Hamilton, Kyra; Ball, Dianne; Lavin, Joanne; Gardiner, Therese; Withers, Teresa K; Marshall, Andrea P

    2017-01-01

    Compliance with surgical safety checklists (SSCs) has been associated with improvements in clinical processes such as antibiotic use, correct site marking, and overall safety processes. Yet, proper execution has been difficult to achieve. The objective of this study was to undertake a process evaluation of four knowledge translation (KT) strategies used to implement the Pass the Baton (PTB) intervention which was designed to improve utilization of the SSC. As part of the process evaluation, a logic model was generated to explain which KT strategies worked well (or less well) in the operating rooms of a tertiary referral hospital in Queensland, Australia. The KT strategies implemented included change champions/opinion leaders, education, audit and feedback, and reminders. In evaluating the implementation of these strategies, this study considered context, intervention and underpinning assumptions, implementation, and mechanism of impact. Observational and interview data were collected to assess implementation of the KT strategies relative to fidelity, feasibility, and acceptability. Findings from 35 structured observations and 15 interviews with 96 intervention participants suggest that all of the KT strategies were consistently implemented. Of the 220 staff working in the department, that is, nurses, anesthetists, and surgeons, 160 (72.7%) knew about the PTB strategies. Qualitative analysis revealed that implementation was generally feasible and acceptable. A barrier to feasibility was physician engagement. An impediment to acceptability was participants' skepticism about the ability of the KT strategies to effect behavioral change. Overall, results of this evaluation suggest that success of implementation was moderate. Given the probable impact of contextual factors, that is, team culture and the characteristics of participants, the KT strategies may need modification prior to widespread implementation.

  7. Evaluating research recruitment strategies to improve response rates amongst South African nurses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Natasha Khamisa

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Orientation: Nurse recruitment to and participation in empirical research is increasingly important in understanding and improving nursing practice. However, the low participation and recruitment rate amongst nurses is not well understood.Research purpose: The aim of this study was to evaluate three research recruitment methods for their impact on recruitment and participation rates amongst South African nurses.Motivation for the study: A limited number of studies exist that formally evaluates different recruitment strategies to improve participation in research amongst nurses within developing contexts, especially South Africa.Research approach, design and method: Participants were recruited using three different methods. Of the 250 nurses randomly selected and invited to participate in a cross-sectional survey, 201 agreed and 162 (81% returned the questionnaires.Main findings: Nursing management participation in the recruitment and data collection process produces more favourable response rates. Reminders and the use of shorter questionnaires also aid higher response rates.Practical/managerial implications: Reminders as well as face-to-face recruitment strategies (especially by a familiar person successfully improved participation rates amongst South African nurses in this study.Contribution/value-add: This study identifies some strategies that could be used more widely to increase the recruitment and participation of South African nurses in research whilst potentially improving their work situation.

  8. Evaluating the enhancement and improvement of China's technology and financial services platform innovation strategy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Ching-Sung; Hu, Kuang-Hua; Chen, Fu-Hsiang

    2016-01-01

    The development of high-tech industry has been prosperous around the world in past decades, while technology and finance have already become the most significant issues in the information era. While high-tech firms are a major force behind a country's economic development, it requires a lot of money for the development process, as well as the financing difficulties for its potential problems, thus, how to evaluate and establish appropriate technology and financial services platforms innovation strategy has become one of the most critical and difficult issues. Moreover, how the chosen intertwined financial environment can be optimized in order that high-tech firms financing problems can be decided has seldom been addressed. Thus, this research aims to establish a technology and financial services platform innovation strategy improvement model, as based on the hybrid MADM model, which addresses the main causal factors and amended priorities in order to strengthen ongoing planning. A DEMATEL technique, as based on Analytic Network Process, as well as modified VIKOR, will be proposed for selecting and re-configuring the aspired technology and financial services platform. An empirical study, as based on China's technology and financial services platform innovation strategy, will be provided for verifying the effectiveness of this proposed methodology. Based on expert interviews, technology and financial services platforms innovation strategy improvement should be made in the following order: credit guarantee platform ( C )_credit rating platform ( B )_investment and finance platform ( A ).

  9. Evaluation of Strategies to Improve the Thermal Performance of Steel Frames in Curtain Wall Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ji Hyun Oh

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Recently, metal curtain wall systems have been widely used in high-rise buildings due to many advantages, including being lightweight, rapid construction, and aesthetic features. Since the metal frame may lead to lower energy performance, thermal discomfort, and condensation risk due to the high thermal conductivity, its thermal performance can be important for the improvement of the overall thermal performance of the curtain wall system, as well as the energy efficiency of the building envelope. This study aims to evaluate variety of design strategies to improve the thermal performance of steel curtain wall frames. Five base cases and three further steps were selected for two different head profile shapes based on a state-of-the art technology review, and their thermal transmittances were calculated through simulations according to the ISO 12631 standard which is an international standard for calculating thermal transmittance of curtain wall system. Measured results that were obtained from hot-box tests were compared with the calculated results to validate the simulation method of this study. The shape of the head profile did not strongly influence the overall thermal transmittance, and the choice of strategies for the rabbet space was more important. More effective strategies could be decided according to the steps for variation development. This result can serve as a guideline for the design of high-performance curtain wall frames.

  10. Evaluation of Patient and Family Engagement Strategies to Improve Medication Safety.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Julia M; Suarez-Cuervo, Catalina; Berger, Zackary; Lee, Joy; Gayleard, Jessica; Rosenberg, Carol; Nagy, Natalia; Weeks, Kristina; Dy, Sydney

    2017-08-09

    Patient and family engagement (PFE) is critical for patient safety. We systematically reviewed types of PFE strategies implemented and their impact on medication safety. We searched MEDLINE, EMBASE, reference lists and websites to August 2016. Two investigators independently reviewed all abstracts and articles, and articles were additionally reviewed by two senior investigators for selection. One investigator abstracted data and two investigators reviewed the data for accuracy. Study quality was determined by consensus. Investigators developed a framework for defining the level of patient engagement: informing patients about medications (Level 1), informing about engagement with health care providers (Level 2), empowering patients with communication tools and skills (Level 3), partnering with patients in their care (Level 4), and integrating patients as full care team members (Level 5). We included 19 studies that mostly targeted older adults taking multiple medications. The median level of engagement was 2, ranging from 2-4. We identified no level 5 studies. Key themes for patient engagement strategies impacting medication safety were patient education and medication reconciliation, with a subtheme of patient portals. Most studies (84%) reported implementation outcomes. The most commonly reported medication safety outcomes were medication errors, including near misses and discrepancies (47%), and medication safety knowledge (37%). Most studies (63%) were of medium to low quality, and risk of bias was generally moderate. Among the 11 studies with control groups, 55% (n = 6) reported statistically significant improvement on at least one medication safety outcome. Further synthesis of medication safety measures was limited due to intervention and outcome heterogeneity. Key strategies for engaging patients in medication safety are education and medication reconciliation. Patient engagement levels were generally low, as defined by a novel framework for determining

  11. Morocco Integration Strategy Improvement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Samir Smuni

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The article justifies the necessity of Morocco integration strategy improvement with regard to the «Arab Spring» consequences and the global financial crisis, gives general recommendations for the development of the integration strategy in order to improve the efficiency of participation in the processes of international integration, detects cooperation lines with the European Union and the Arab Maghreb Union in coordination of these integration strategy directions

  12. Management strategy evaluation of pheromone-baited trapping techniques to improve management of invasive sea lamprey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dawson, Heather; Jones, Michael L.; Irwin, Brian J.; Johnson, Nicholas; Wagner, Michael C.; Szymanski, Melissa

    2016-01-01

    We applied a management strategy evaluation (MSE) model to examine the potential cost-effectiveness of using pheromone-baited trapping along with conventional lampricide treatment to manage invasive sea lamprey. Four pheromone-baited trapping strategies were modeled: (1) stream activation wherein pheromone was applied to existing traps to achieve 10−12 mol/L in-stream concentration, (2) stream activation plus two additional traps downstream with pheromone applied at 2.5 mg/hr (reverse-intercept approach), (3) trap activation wherein pheromone was applied at 10 mg/hr to existing traps, and (4) trap activation and reverse-intercept approach. Each new strategy was applied, with remaining funds applied to conventional lampricide control. Simulating deployment of these hybrid strategies on fourteen Lake Michigan streams resulted in increases of 17 and 11% (strategies 1 and 2) and decreases of 4 and 7% (strategies 3 and 4) of the lakewide mean abundance of adult sea lamprey relative to status quo. MSE revealed performance targets for trap efficacy to guide additional research because results indicate that combining lampricides and high efficacy trapping technologies can reduce sea lamprey abundance on average without increasing control costs.

  13. Unlocking the “black box” of practice improvement strategies to implement surgical safety checklists: a process evaluation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gillespie, Brigid M; Hamilton, Kyra; Ball, Dianne; Lavin, Joanne; Gardiner, Therese; Withers, Teresa K; Marshall, Andrea P

    2017-01-01

    Background Compliance with surgical safety checklists (SSCs) has been associated with improvements in clinical processes such as antibiotic use, correct site marking, and overall safety processes. Yet, proper execution has been difficult to achieve. Objectives The objective of this study was to undertake a process evaluation of four knowledge translation (KT) strategies used to implement the Pass the Baton (PTB) intervention which was designed to improve utilization of the SSC. Methods As part of the process evaluation, a logic model was generated to explain which KT strategies worked well (or less well) in the operating rooms of a tertiary referral hospital in Queensland, Australia. The KT strategies implemented included change champions/opinion leaders, education, audit and feedback, and reminders. In evaluating the implementation of these strategies, this study considered context, intervention and underpinning assumptions, implementation, and mechanism of impact. Observational and interview data were collected to assess implementation of the KT strategies relative to fidelity, feasibility, and acceptability. Results Findings from 35 structured observations and 15 interviews with 96 intervention participants suggest that all of the KT strategies were consistently implemented. Of the 220 staff working in the department, that is, nurses, anesthetists, and surgeons, 160 (72.7%) knew about the PTB strategies. Qualitative analysis revealed that implementation was generally feasible and acceptable. A barrier to feasibility was physician engagement. An impediment to acceptability was participants’ skepticism about the ability of the KT strategies to effect behavioral change. Conclusion Overall, results of this evaluation suggest that success of implementation was moderate. Given the probable impact of contextual factors, that is, team culture and the characteristics of participants, the KT strategies may need modification prior to widespread implementation. PMID

  14. Development, implementation, and evaluation of a mental rehearsal strategy to improve clinical performance and reduce stress: A mixed methods study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ignacio, Jeanette; Dolmans, Diana; Scherpbier, Albert; Rethans, Jan-Joost; Lopez, Violeta; Liaw, Sok Ying

    2016-02-01

    Mental rehearsal is a form of mental training that has been used by physicians and nurses to improve performance of clinical skills, and as a vital component of stress management training. To help novice nurses deal with often stressful clinical events that require the processing of information essential to patient management, a mental rehearsal strategy was developed and implemented in a Year 3 nursing simulation program. Inherent to mental rehearsal is imagery, which facilitates cognitive and affective modification, and reduction of extraneous cognitive load. As such, it was expected that the mental rehearsal strategy would improve students' performance and reduce stress in managing deteriorating patients. The study used a mixed methods design. Eighteen Year 3 nursing students participated in the pre- and post-design study, which consisted of the development and implementation of a mental rehearsal strategy. The Rescuing A Patient In Deteriorating Situations (RAPIDS) tool was used to assess performance. Heart rates and systolic blood pressures were used to measure stress. The State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI) was used as a psychological measure of stress/anxiety. Five participants were involved in a focus group discussion that evaluated the usefulness of the mental rehearsal strategy. There was a significant improvement in performance (Pstrategy. The mental rehearsal strategy for deteriorating patient management can be valuable based on the findings on performance and based on the participants' feedback. Its role in reducing stress, however, needs further evaluation. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. ProactiveVector control strategies and improved monitoring and evaluation practices for dengue prevention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eisen, Lars; Beaty, Barry J; Morrison, Amy C; Scott, Thomas W

    2009-11-01

    Despite tremendous efforts by public health organizations in dengue-endemic countries, it has proven difficult to achieve effective and sustainable control of the primary dengue virus vector Aedes aegypti (L.) and to effectively disrupt dengue outbreaks. This problem has multiple root causes, including uncontrolled urbanization, increased global spread of dengue viruses, and vector and dengue control programs not being provided adequate resources. In this forum article, we give an overview of the basic elements of a vector and dengue control program and describe a continuous improvement cyclical model to systematically and incrementally improve control program performance by regular efforts to identify ineffective methods and inferior technology, and then replacing them with better performing alternatives. The first step includes assessments of the overall resource allocation among vector/dengue control program activities, the efficacy of currently used vector control methods, and the appropriateness of technology used to support the program. We expect this will reveal that 1) some currently used vector control methods are not effective, 2) resource allocations often are skewed toward reactive vector control measures, and 3) proactive approaches commonly are underfunded and therefore poorly executed. Next steps are to conceptualize desired changes to vector control methods or technologies used and then to operationally determine in pilot studies whether these changes are likely to improve control program performance. This should be followed by a shift in resource allocation to replace ineffective methods and inferior technology with more effective and operationally tested alternatives. The cyclical and self-improving nature of the continuous improvement model will produce locally appropriate management strategies that continually are adapted to counter changes in vector population or dengue virus transmission dynamics. We discuss promising proactive vector control

  16. Evaluation of use of reading comprehension strategies to improve reading comprehension of adult college students with acquired brain injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griffiths, Gina G; Sohlberg, McKay Moore; Kirk, Cecilia; Fickas, Stephen; Biancarosa, Gina

    2016-01-01

    Adults with mild to moderate acquired brain injury (ABI) often pursue post-secondary or professional education after their injuries in order to enter or re-enter the job market. An increasing number of these adults report problems with reading-to-learn. The problem is particularly concerning given the growing population of adult survivors of ABI. Despite the rising need, empirical evaluation of reading comprehension interventions for adults with ABI is scarce. This study used a within-subject design to evaluate whether adult college students with ABI with no more than moderate cognitive impairments benefited from using reading comprehension strategies to improve comprehension of expository text. Integrating empirical support from the cognitive rehabilitation and special education literature, the researchers designed a multi-component reading comprehension strategy package. Participants read chapters from an introductory-level college anthropology textbook in two different conditions: strategy and no-strategy. The results indicated that reading comprehension strategy use was associated with recall of more correct information units in immediate and delayed free recall tasks; more efficient recall in the delayed free recall task; and increased accuracy recognising statements from a sentence verification task designed to reflect the local and global coherence of the text. The findings support further research into using reading comprehension strategies as an intervention approach for the adult ABI population. Future research needs include identifying how to match particular reading comprehension strategies to individuals, examining whether reading comprehension performance improves further through the incorporation of systematic training, and evaluating texts from a range of disciplines and genres.

  17. Unlocking the “black box” of practice improvement strategies to implement surgical safety checklists: a process evaluation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gillespie BM

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Brigid M Gillespie,1–3 Kyra Hamilton,4 Dianne Ball,5 Joanne Lavin,6 Therese Gardiner,6 Teresa K Withers,7 Andrea P Marshall1–3 1School of Nursing & Midwifery, Griffith University, Gold Coast, 2Gold Coast University Hospital and Health Service, Southport, 3Nursing & Midwifery Education & Research Unit (NMERU, National Centre of Research Excellence in Nursing, Menzies Health Institute of Queensland, Griffith University, Gold Coast, 4School of Applied Psychology, Griffith University, Mt Gravatt, 5Communio Pty Ltd, Sydney, 6Nursing & Midwifery Education & Research Unit, 7Surgical and Procedural Services, Gold Coast University Hospital and Health Service, Southport, Australia Background: Compliance with surgical safety checklists (SSCs has been associated with improvements in clinical processes such as antibiotic use, correct site marking, and overall safety processes. Yet, proper execution has been difficult to achieve.Objectives: The objective of this study was to undertake a process evaluation of four knowledge translation (KT strategies used to implement the Pass the Baton (PTB intervention which was designed to improve utilization of the SSC. Methods: As part of the process evaluation, a logic model was generated to explain which KT strategies worked well (or less well in the operating rooms of a tertiary referral hospital in Queensland, Australia. The KT strategies implemented included change champions/opinion leaders, education, audit and feedback, and reminders. In evaluating the implementation of these strategies, this study considered context, intervention and underpinning assumptions, implementation, and mechanism of impact. Observational and interview data were collected to assess implementation of the KT strategies relative to fidelity, feasibility, and acceptability. Results: Findings from 35 structured observations and 15 interviews with 96 intervention participants suggest that all of the KT strategies were consistently

  18. Evaluation of Rehabilitation Strategies and Management Schemes for the Improvement of Mangrove Management Programs in Lingayen Gulf

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Severino Salmo III

    2007-06-01

    Full Text Available We evaluated the mangrove rehabilitation strategies and management schemes in five municipalities in Lingayen Gulf (Bolinao, Anda, Bani, Alaminos and San Fernando. Mangrove planting appears to be the first and only option used in the area, ignoring other recommended management strategies, e.g. conservation, landscaping, and sustainable production. All planting sites were located in coastal fringes and are mostly monospeficic stands of the species Rhizophora mucronata. The planted mangroves were constrained by low seedling survival and stunted growth as probably caused by poor species-substrate matching, mono-species planting and pest infestations. Three management schemes were noted: community-managed (Bolinao and Anda, local government unit (LGU-managed (Alaminos and San Fernando, and co-managed between the LGU and the community (Bani. The community-managed mangrove areas have the benefits of voluntary efforts from community-based organizations in conducting daily management activities but were constrained with budgetary and logistical concerns. In contrast, both LGU-managed and co-managed areas received institutional and logistical supports from their respective municipal governments, but lacking community participation made mangrove management difficult. Almost two decades of mangrove management indeed helped improved the mangrove forest condition, at least in terms of forest structure. These projects demonstrated some level of success but also encountered several setbacks. Several lessons can be derived from these areas that can help improve the mangrove rehabilitation and management approaches in Lingayen Gulf. Among the recommendations are: (1 provide ordinance enacting the remaining natural secondary growth mangroves as marine protected areas, (2 promote planting in former mangrove areas by reverting abandoned, idled and unproductive aquaculture ponds to mangroves; (3 improve management schemes by formulating resource management plan

  19. An improved strategy for evaluating the extent of chronic arterial baroreceptor denervation in conscious rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Rodríguez-Martínez

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available There is no index or criterion of aortic barodenervation, nor can we differentiate among rats that have suffered chronic sham, aortic or sino-aortic denervation. The objective of this study was to develop a procedure to generate at least one quantitative, reproducible and validated index that precisely evaluates the extent of chronic arterial barodenervation performed in conscious rats. Data from 79 conscious male Wistar rats of about 65-70 days of age with diverse extents of chronic arterial barodenervation and used in previous experiments were reanalyzed. The mean arterial pressure (MAP and the heart rate (HR of all rats were measured systematically before (over 1 h and after three consecutive iv bolus injections of phenylephrine (PHE and sodium nitroprusside (SNP. Four expressions of the effectiveness of barodenervation (MAP lability, PHE ratio, SNP ratio, and SNP-PHE slope were assessed with linear fixed models, three-level average variance, average separation among levels, outlier box plot analysis, and overlapping graphic analysis. The analysis indicated that a neither MAP lability nor SNP-PHE slope was affected by the level of chronic sodium intake; b even though the Box-Cox transformations of both MAP lability [transformed lability index (TLI] and SNP-PHE slope [transformed general sensitivity index (TGSI, {((3-(ΔHRSNP-ΔHRPHE/ΔMAPSNP-ΔMAPPHE-0.4-1/-0.04597}] could be two promising indexes, TGSI proved to be the best index; c TLI and TGSI were not freely interchangeable indexes for this purpose. TGSI ranges that permit differentiation between sham (10.09 to 11.46, aortic (8.40 to 9.94 and sino-aortic (7.68 to 8.24 barodenervated conscious rats were defined.

  20. Educative strategy evaluation to improve critical reading skills on clinical research texts in second year gyneco-obstetrics residents

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Carranza Lira, Sebastián; Arce Herrera, Rosa María; González González, Patricia

    2007-01-01

    .... To evaluate the degree of development of the aptitude for the reading of clinical research articles in 2nd grade residents of the gynecology and obstetrics speciality alter an educative strategy...

  1. Evaluation of the Multimodal Strategy for Improvement of Hand Hygiene as Proposed by the World Health Organization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pereira, Eliana B S; Jorge, Miguel T; Oliveira, Elias J; Júnior, Alberto Lopes Ribeiro; Santos, Lauro R L; Mendes-Rodrigues, Clesnan

    Hand hygiene has the biggest impact and is the least expensive way to prevent and control health care-associated infections. In this study, we assessed the effectiveness of the multimodal strategy of the World Health Organization to improve health care-associated infection rates, hand hygiene compliance, and the related knowledge of health care professionals in a Brazilian university hospital. We observed the necessity for an alternative approach in hospitals with high staff turnover and low attendance of educational sessions.

  2. A strategy for company improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howley, L

    2000-03-01

    Strategies based on the kaizen methodology are designed to continuously improve company performance without the need for large capital investments. This article looks at how one company used simple kaizen principles to its advantage, achieving 67% increase in productivity and 10% reduction in the standard cost of product.

  3. Strategies to improve running economy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnes, Kyle R; Kilding, Andrew E

    2015-01-01

    Running economy (RE) represents a complex interplay of physiological and biomechanical factors that is typically defined as the energy demand for a given velocity of submaximal running and expressed as the submaximal oxygen uptake (VO2) at a given running velocity. This review considered a wide range of acute and chronic interventions that have been investigated with respect to improving economy by augmenting one or more components of the metabolic, cardiorespiratory, biomechanical or neuromuscular systems. Improvements in RE have traditionally been achieved through endurance training. Endurance training in runners leads to a wide range of physiological responses, and it is very likely that these characteristics of running training will influence RE. Training history and training volume have been suggested to be important factors in improving RE, while uphill and level-ground high-intensity interval training represent frequently prescribed forms of training that may elicit further enhancements in economy. More recently, research has demonstrated short-term resistance and plyometric training has resulted in enhanced RE. This improvement in RE has been hypothesized to be a result of enhanced neuromuscular characteristics. Altitude acclimatization results in both central and peripheral adaptations that improve oxygen delivery and utilization, mechanisms that potentially could improve RE. Other strategies, such as stretching should not be discounted as a training modality in order to prevent injuries; however, it appears that there is an optimal degree of flexibility and stiffness required to maximize RE. Several nutritional interventions have also received attention for their effects on reducing oxygen demand during exercise, most notably dietary nitrates and caffeine. It is clear that a range of training and passive interventions may improve RE, and researchers should concentrate their investigative efforts on more fully understanding the types and mechanisms that

  4. Strategies for improving employee retention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verlander, Edward G; Evans, Martin R

    2007-03-28

    This article proposes a solution to the perennial problem of talent retention in the clinical laboratory. It includes the presentation of 12 strategies that may be used to significantly improve institutional identity formation and establishment of the psychological contract that employees form with laboratory management. Identity formation and psychological contracting are deemed as essential in helping reduce employee turnover and increase retention. The 12 conversational strategies may be used as a set of best practices for all employees, but most importantly for new employees, and should be implemented at the critical moment when employees first join the laboratory. This time is referred to as "retention on-boarding"--the period of induction and laboratory orientation. Retention on-boarding involves a dialogue between employees and management that is focused on the psychological, practical, cultural, and political dimensions of the laboratory. It is placed in the context of the modern clinical laboratory, which is faced with employing and managing Generation X knowledge workers. Specific topics and broad content areas of those conversations are outlined.

  5. Evaluation of maintenance strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-11-01

    In the mid1990s, the Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) initiated the Maintenance Cost : Effectiveness study (SPR 371) with the development of plans and an experiment design to evaluate the : effectiveness of a variety of asphalt pavement...

  6. Can a "good death" be made better?: A preliminary evaluation of a patient-centred quality improvement strategy for severely ill in-patients

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Powis Jeff

    2004-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Prior studies attempting to improve end-of-life care have focused on specific outcomes deemed important to healthcare providers, with disappointing results. Improvement may be best achieved by identifying concerns important to individual patients, communicating the patients' concerns to the treating medical team, and repeating the process frequently until all concerns are addressed. Our objective was to conduct a preliminary evaluation of this innovative patient-centred quality improvement strategy. Methods Initial interviews elicited participants' ideas for improvement, which were then fed back to health care providers by the study investigator. A rapid-cycle change model ensured frequent reassessment and continued feedback. The study involved 36 seriously ill, hospitalized patients on teaching general medical inpatient units of a tertiary care hospital. The main outcome measure was participants' ratings of satisfaction within different domains of care on follow-up interviews. Results The proportion of participants who rated various aspects of their care as "excellent" or "very good" on initial interview was 72% for overall care, 64% for symptom control, 66% for level of support, and 75% for discussions about life sustaining treatments. Patients and families identified many actionable steps for improvement such as; better control of pain and shortness of breath, better access to physicians and medical information, more help with activities of daily living, improving the patient's environment, and shorter waits for nursing care, diagnosis, and treatment. Following feedback to the clinical team, participants reported improvement in overall care (32%, symptom control (44%, and support (40%. Only a minority had further discussions about life sustaining treatments. Conclusion A patient-centred approach using rapid-cycle change was feasible and shows promise for improving the quality of end-of-life care. It should be evaluated on

  7. Strategies to improve quality of childbirth care

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    farahnaz Changaee

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: Access to affordable and quality health care is one of the most important ways for reducing maternal and child mortality. The purpose of this study was to provide strategies to promote the quality of care during childbirth in Lorestan province in 2011. Materials and Methods: This research was a mixed method (quantitative, qualitative, study in which quality of 200 care during childbirth in hospitals of Lorestan Province were evaluated. Data gathered through self-made tools (Checklists prepared according to the guidelines of the ministry of health. Descriptive statistics and SPSS software were used to data analysis.In the second part of the study which was qualitative, interview with service providers, hospital officials and high-ranking officials of Lorestan university of medical sciences (decision makers was used to discuss strategies to improve the quality of care. Results: The results showed that the care of the first stage delivery in %54.5, second stage %57 and third stage 66% were in accordance with the desired status and care in this three stages was of moderate quality. Based on the interviews, the officials who are in charge of Lorestan university of medical sciences, proposed strategies such as financial incentives and in-service training of midwives as suitable strategies to improve quality of services. Conclusion: According to the results, strategies such as financial incentives, increased use of private sector services to reduce the workload of the public sector and increase of quality and use of more in-service training, to improve the quality of services, are recommended.

  8. Experimental Evaluations of Two Strategies to Improve Reading Achievement in Kenya: Enhanced Literacy Instruction and Treatment of Malaria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jukes, Matthew; Dubeck, Margaret; Brooker, Simon; Wolf, Sharon

    2012-01-01

    There is less quality evidence on how malaria may affect cognitive abilities and educational achievement or on how schools can tackle the problem of malaria among school children. A randomised trial among Sri Lankan children showed that weekly malaria chemoprophylaxis with chloroquine can improve school examination scores. The Health and Literacy…

  9. Methods of Evaluating Performances for Marketing Strategies

    OpenAIRE

    Ioan Cucu

    2005-01-01

    There are specific methods for assessing and improving the effectiveness of a marketing strategy. A marketer should state in the marketing plan what a marketing strategy is supposed to accomplish. These statements should set forth performance standards, which usually are stated in terms of profits, sales, or costs. Actual performance must be measured in similar terms so that comparisons are possible. This paper describes sales analysis and cost analysis, two general ways of evaluating the act...

  10. Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategies (REMSs): Are They Improving Drug Safety? A Critical Review of REMSs Requiring Elements to Assure Safe Use (ETASU).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boudes, Pol F

    2017-06-01

    Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategies (REMSs) with Elements to Assure Safe Use (ETASU) are requested for drugs with significant safety risks. We reviewed REMS programs issued since 2011 to evaluate their rationales, characteristics, and consistencies, and evaluated their impact on improving drug safety. We conducted a literature search and a survey of relevant websites (FDA, manufacturers, and REMSs). ETASU characteristics were summarized. REMS risks were compared with labeled risks, including black box warnings. Forty-two programs were analyzed. Seven incorporated drugs of the same class. Most drugs (57%) were indicated for an orphan disease. A single risk was mentioned in 24 REMSs, and multiple risks in 18. Embryo-fetal toxicity and abuse or misuse were the most frequent risks. All risks were identified during clinical development but some were hypothetical. Thirty-six drugs had a black box warning. REMS risks and black box risks differed for 11 drugs. A drug with multiple indications could have a REMS for one of them but not for another. Most REMSs required prescriber training and certification, half required dispenser certification and patient enrolment. REMSs were revised multiple times and only three (7%) were discontinued. No data were available to establish whether REMSs were effective in improving drug safety. Some REMSs were deemed inefficient. REMSs with ETASU continue to be implemented but their impact on improving drug safety is still not documented. Hence, one of the main requirements of the FDA Amendments Act of 2007 is not being addressed. In addition, REMSs are complex and their logic is inconsistent; we recommend a thorough re-evaluation of the REMS program.

  11. Evaluation of Patient and Family Outpatient Complaints as a Strategy to Prioritize Efforts to Improve Cancer Care Delivery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mack, Jennifer W; Jacobson, Joseph; Frank, David; Cronin, Angel M; Horvath, Kathleen; Allen, Victoria; Wind, Jennifer; Schrag, Deborah

    2017-10-01

    Limited systematic data about complaints related to cancer care are available. Patient complaints related to ambulatory care at a large academic cancer center were examined to better understand patient experiences of care and prioritize opportunities for quality improvement. Content analysis of outpatient complaints made to the Patient/Family Relations Office at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, in a two-year period (January 2013-December 2014) were conducted. Narrative complaint records were reviewed independently by two to four reviewers to categorize primary and secondary reasons underlying complaints and to assess complaint severity. Among 78,668 outpatients seen during the two-year period, 266 complaints (0.3%) were made to the Patient/Family Relations Office. Some 48% of the complaints involved management issues, including finance and billing (10%), service issues (15%), delays (13%), and access and admission (6%); 11% of complaints related to quality and safety, whereas 41% of complaints related to relationships, including communication breakdowns (15%), patient-staff dialogue (5%), and humanness and caring (18%). Twenty percent of the complaints were classified as high severity, including 57% of quality- and safety-related complaints. Eleven percent of the patients involved in complaints ultimately transferred care to another provider or institution; 43% of high-severity complaints resulted in a transfer of care. Most of the concerns represented in the complaints related to humanistic rather than technical aspects of care. A systematic review of complaints would offer the opportunity to improve patient-centeredness of care by identifying areas where care fails to meet patient and family needs. Copyright © 2017 The Joint Commission. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Implementation and Evaluation of Two Educational Strategies to Improve Screening for Eating Disorders in Pediatric Primary Care.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gooding, Holly C; Cheever, Elizabeth; Forman, Sara F; Hatoun, Jonathan; Jooma, Farah; Touloumtzis, Currie; Vernacchio, Louis

    2017-05-01

    Routine screening for disordered eating or body image concerns is recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics. We evaluated the ability of two educational interventions to increase screening for eating disorders in pediatric primary care practice, predicting that the "active-learning" group would have an increase in documented screening after intervention. We studied 303 practitioners in a large independent practice association located in the northeastern United States. We used a quasi-experimental design to test the effect of printed educational materials ("print-learning" group, n = 280 participants) compared with in-person shared learning followed by on-line spaced education ("active-learning" group, n = 23 participants) on documented screening of adolescents for eating disorder symptoms during preventive care visits. A subset of 88 participants completed additional surveys regarding knowledge of eating disorders, comfort screening for, diagnosing, and treating eating disorders, and satisfaction with their training regarding eating disorders. During the preintervention period, 4.5% of patients seen by practitioners in both the print-learning and active-learning groups had chart documentation of screening for eating disorder symptoms or body image concerns. This increased to 22% in the active-learning group and 5.7% in the print-learning group in the postintervention period, a statistically significant result. Compared with print-learning participants, active-learning group participants had greater eating disorder knowledge scores, increases in comfort diagnosing eating disorders, and satisfaction with their training in this area. In-person shared learning followed by on-line spaced education is more effective than print educational materials for increasing provider documentation of screening for eating disorders in primary care. Copyright © 2016 Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Aedes aegypti (Diptera: Culicidae): evaluation of natural long-lasting materials containing pyriproxyfen to improve control strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seccacini, Emilia; Juan, Laura; Zerba, Eduardo; Licastro, Susana

    2014-09-01

    Natural materials such as beeswax or a paraffin/stearin mixture containing pyriproxyfen and used as a slow release formulation may convert any breeding place into a larvicidal ovitrap for Aedes aegypti (L.) control. Effectiveness and residual activity of beeswax and paraffin/stearin 1:1 discs containing from 10(-5) to 10(-1) % pyriproxyfen and sticked at the bottom of plastic jars were evaluated for adult emergence inhibition (EI) on late 3rd or early 4th instar A. aegypti larvae. At the initial time t = 0, the EI was 100% for vessels containing beeswax or paraffin/stearin 1:1 discs containing up to 10(-4)% pyriproxyfen. For the lowest pyriproxyfen concentration of 10(-5)%, paraffin/stearin mixture gave a higher EI% value than beeswax (100 and 50%, respectively). Jars were kept at room temperature, and water was totally replaced every 15 days. Bioassays for residual activity repeated monthly showed that at 30 days and for pyriproxyfen 10(-5) % and both matrices, the EI values were low and comparable to control values. For pyriproxyfen 10(-4) %, EI remained above 95% for at least 90 days and around 75% up to 180 days. The EI values are always higher for paraffin/stearin mixture than for beeswax. For all other higher concentrations, 100% EI was obtained at least during 300 days. In a semi-field trial, paraffin/stearin/sand O-rings (2:1:2), containing pyriproxyfen 1%, were sunken in 200-l water-storage tanks and held outdoors in a shadow place. After 72 h, a 250-ml aliquot was taken (t = 0) obtaining 100 % EI. Water level was completed to 200 l every 15 days and bioassays repeated monthly as before. Residual activity remains with 100% EI at least for 6 months.

  14. Strategies to improve recruitment to randomised trials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Treweek, Shaun; Pitkethly, Marie; Cook, Jonathan; Fraser, Cynthia; Mitchell, Elizabeth; Sullivan, Frank; Jackson, Catherine; Taskila, Tyna K; Gardner, Heidi

    2018-02-22

    Recruiting participants to trials can be extremely difficult. Identifying strategies that improve trial recruitment would benefit both trialists and health research. To quantify the effects of strategies for improving recruitment of participants to randomised trials. A secondary objective is to assess the evidence for the effect of the research setting (e.g. primary care versus secondary care) on recruitment. We searched the Cochrane Methodology Review Group Specialised Register (CMR) in the Cochrane Library (July 2012, searched 11 February 2015); MEDLINE and MEDLINE In Process (OVID) (1946 to 10 February 2015); Embase (OVID) (1996 to 2015 Week 06); Science Citation Index & Social Science Citation Index (ISI) (2009 to 11 February 2015) and ERIC (EBSCO) (2009 to 11 February 2015). Randomised and quasi-randomised trials of methods to increase recruitment to randomised trials. This includes non-healthcare studies and studies recruiting to hypothetical trials. We excluded studies aiming to increase response rates to questionnaires or trial retention and those evaluating incentives and disincentives for clinicians to recruit participants. We extracted data on: the method evaluated; country in which the study was carried out; nature of the population; nature of the study setting; nature of the study to be recruited into; randomisation or quasi-randomisation method; and numbers and proportions in each intervention group. We used a risk difference to estimate the absolute improvement and the 95% confidence interval (CI) to describe the effect in individual trials. We assessed heterogeneity between trial results. We used GRADE to judge the certainty we had in the evidence coming from each comparison. We identified 68 eligible trials (24 new to this update) with more than 74,000 participants. There were 63 studies involving interventions aimed directly at trial participants, while five evaluated interventions aimed at people recruiting participants. All studies were in

  15. Implementing and evaluating a regional strategy to improve testing rates in VA patients at risk for HIV, utilizing the QUERI process as a guiding framework: QUERI Series

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Osborn Teresa

    2008-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background We describe how we used the framework of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA Quality Enhancement Research Initiative (QUERI to develop a program to improve rates of diagnostic testing for the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV. This venture was prompted by the observation by the CDC that 25% of HIV-infected patients do not know their diagnosis – a point of substantial importance to the VA, which is the largest provider of HIV care in the United States. Methods Following the QUERI steps (or process, we evaluated: 1 whether undiagnosed HIV infection is a high-risk, high-volume clinical issue within the VA, 2 whether there are evidence-based recommendations for HIV testing, 3 whether there are gaps in the performance of VA HIV testing, and 4 the barriers and facilitators to improving current practice in the VA. Based on our findings, we developed and initiated a QUERI step 4/phase 1 pilot project using the precepts of the Chronic Care Model. Our improvement strategy relies upon electronic clinical reminders to provide decision support; audit/feedback as a clinical information system, and appropriate changes in delivery system design. These activities are complemented by academic detailing and social marketing interventions to achieve provider activation. Results Our preliminary formative evaluation indicates the need to ensure leadership and team buy-in, address facility-specific barriers, refine the reminder, and address factors that contribute to inter-clinic variances in HIV testing rates. Preliminary unadjusted data from the first seven months of our program show 3–5 fold increases in the proportion of at-risk patients who are offered HIV testing at the VA sites (stations where the pilot project has been undertaken; no change was seen at control stations. Discussion This project demonstrates the early success of the application of the QUERI process to the development of a program to improve HIV testing rates

  16. Teaching Strategies to Improve Algebra Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zbiek, Rose Mary; Larson, Matthew R.

    2015-01-01

    Improving student learning is the primary goal of every teacher of algebra. Teachers seek strategies to help all students learn important algebra content and develop mathematical practices. The new Institute of Education Sciences[IES] practice guide, "Teaching Strategies for Improving Algebra Knowledge in Middle and High School Students"…

  17. Evaluation of hospital palliative care teams: strengths and weaknesses of the before-after study design and strategies to improve it.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simon, S; Higginson, I J

    2009-01-01

    Hospital palliative care teams (HPCTs) are well established as multi-professional services to provide palliative care in an acute hospital setting and are increasing in number. However, there is still limited evaluation of them, in terms of efficacy and effectiveness. The gold standard method of evaluation is a randomised control trial, but because of methodological (e.g., randomisation), ethical and practical difficulties such trials are often not possible. HPCT is a complex intervention, and the specific situation in palliative care makes it challenging to evaluate (e.g., distress and cognitive impairment of patients). The quasi-experimental before-after study design has the advantage of enabling an experimental character without randomisation. But this has other weaknesses and is prone to bias, for example, temporal trends and selection bias. As for every study design, avoidance and minimisation of bias is important to improve validity. Therefore, strategies of selecting an appropriate control group or time series and applying valid outcomes and measurement tools help reducing bias and strengthen the methods. Special attention is needed to plan and define the design and applied method.

  18. 214 Using Appropriate Strategies to Improve Students ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    User

    2011-07-21

    Jul 21, 2011 ... requires good possession of reading comprehension skills. .... strategies that can be taught that reliably improve comprehension (National. Reading Panel ..... Guest comment: Teaching writing to teach physics. American ...

  19. Iterative Evaluation in a Mobile Counseling and Testing Program to Reach People of Color at Risk for HIV--New Strategies Improve Program Acceptability, Effectiveness, and Evaluation Capabilities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spielberg, Freya; Kurth, Ann; Reidy, William; McKnight, Teka; Dikobe, Wame; Wilson, Charles

    2011-01-01

    This article highlights findings from an evaluation that explored the impact of mobile versus clinic-based testing, rapid versus central-lab based testing, incentives for testing, and the use of a computer counseling program to guide counseling and automate evaluation in a mobile program reaching people of color at risk for HIV. The program's…

  20. Functional dysphonia: strategies to improve patient outcomes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Behlau M

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Mara Behlau, Glaucya Madazio, Gisele Oliveira Voice Department, Centro de Estudos da Voz – CEV, São Paulo, Brazil Abstract: Functional dysphonia (FD refers to a voice problem in the absence of a physical condition. It is a multifaceted voice disorder. There is no consensus with regard to its definition and inclusion criteria for diagnosis. FD has many predisposing and precipitating factors, which may include genetic susceptibility, psychological traits, and the vocal behavior itself. The assessment of voice disorders should be multidimensional. In addition to the clinical examination, auditory-perceptual, acoustic, and self-assessment analyses are very important. Self-assessment was introduced in the field of voice 25 years ago and has produced a major impact in the clinical and scientific scenario. The choice of treatment for FD is vocal rehabilitation by means of direct therapy; however, compliance has been an issue, except for cases of functional aphonia or when an intensive training is administered. Nevertheless, there are currently no controlled studies that have explored the different options of treatment regimens for these patients. Strategies to improve patient outcome involve proper multidisciplinary diagnosis in order to exclude neurological and psychiatric disorders, careful voice documentation with quantitative measurement and qualitative description of the vocal deviation for comparison after treatment, acoustic evaluation to gather data on the mechanism involved in voice production, self-assessment questionnaires to map the impact of the voice problem on the basis of the patient's perspective, referral to psychological evaluation in cases of suspected clinical anxiety and/or depression, identification of dysfunctional coping strategies, self-regulation data to assist patients with their vocal load, and direct and intensive vocal rehabilitation to reduce psychological resistance and to reassure patient's recovery. An

  1. Strategies to improve retention in randomised trials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brueton, Valerie C; Tierney, Jayne; Stenning, Sally; Harding, Seeromanie; Meredith, Sarah; Nazareth, Irwin; Rait, Greta

    2013-01-01

    Background Loss to follow-up from randomised trials can introduce bias and reduce study power, affecting the generalisability, validity and reliability of results. Many strategies are used to reduce loss to follow-up and improve retention but few have been formally evaluated. Objectives To quantify the effect of strategies to improve retention on the proportion of participants retained in randomised trials and to investigate if the effect varied by trial strategy and trial setting. Search methods We searched the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL), MEDLINE, PreMEDLINE, EMBASE, PsycINFO, DARE, CINAHL, Campbell Collaboration's Social, Psychological, Educational and Criminological Trials Register, and ERIC. We handsearched conference proceedings and publication reference lists for eligible retention trials. We also surveyed all UK Clinical Trials Units to identify further studies. Selection criteria We included eligible retention trials of randomised or quasi-randomised evaluations of strategies to increase retention that were embedded in 'host' randomised trials from all disease areas and healthcare settings. We excluded studies aiming to increase treatment compliance. Data collection and analysis We contacted authors to supplement or confirm data that we had extracted. For retention trials, we recorded data on the method of randomisation, type of strategy evaluated, comparator, primary outcome, planned sample size, numbers randomised and numbers retained. We used risk ratios (RR) to evaluate the effectiveness of the addition of strategies to improve retention. We assessed heterogeneity between trials using the Chi2 and I2 statistics. For main trials that hosted retention trials, we extracted data on disease area, intervention, population, healthcare setting, sequence generation and allocation concealment. Main results We identified 38 eligible retention trials. Included trials evaluated six broad types of strategies to improve retention. These

  2. Evaluation strategies in CT scanning

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    In this talk, dimensional measurement results using different measuring strategies applied in different inspection software packages for volume and surface data analysis are presented. The influence of the strategy on the dimensional measurement is determined by calculating the measurement uncert...

  3. Improving Income through Farmers’ Group Empowerment Strategy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nia Desiana

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract: During recent years the concept of farmer empowerment has been put on the agenda and now is a part of Indonesian’s government program. Empowerment of farmers’ group considered necessary because, in agricultural development, farmers’ group are the key development resource and subject in developing their agricultural efforts. This paper aims to explore the farmer’s group empowerment strategies to improve their income. The paper is based solely on the reviews of literature on the topic of farmer’s group and empowerment to explore the phenomena in the agricultural sector. Based on the findings, the paper proposes the farmers’ group empowerment strategies such as farmer’s group learning and innovation and information and communication technology (ICT have a positive influence on improving their income. Keywords: Empowerment, farmers group, income, strategy, agriculture, learning, innovation, ICT

  4. Transgenic strategies for improving rice disease resistance

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    STORAGESEVER

    2009-05-04

    May 4, 2009 ... Review. Transgenic strategies for improving rice disease resistance. Huijuan Zhang, Guojun Li, Wei Li and Fengming Song*. State Key Laboratory for Rice Biology, Institute of Biotechnology, Zhejiang University-Huajiachi Campus, Hangzhou,. Zhejiang 310029, P.R. .... In RTBV-ODs2 line, RTBV DNA.

  5. From photons to biomass and biofuels: evaluation of different strategies for the improvement of algal biotechnology based on comparative energy balances.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilhelm, Christian; Jakob, Torsten

    2011-12-01

    Microalgal based biofuels are discussed as future sustainable energy source because of their higher photosynthetic and water use efficiency to produce biomass. In the context of climate CO2 mitigation strategies, algal mass production is discussed as a potential CO2 sequestration technology which uses CO2 emissions to produce biomass with high-oil content independent on arable land. In this short review, it is presented how complete energy balances from photon to harvestable biomass can help to identify the limiting processes on the cellular level. The results show that high productivity is always correlated with high metabolic costs. The overall efficiency of biomass formation can be improved by a photobioreactor design which is kinetically adapted to the rate-limiting steps in cell physiology. However, taking into account the real photon demand per assimilated carbon and the energy input for biorefinement, it becomes obvious that alternative strategies must be developed to reach the goal of a real CO2 sequestration.

  6. Didactic Strategies to Improve Reading and Writing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elide del Rosario Castellanos Santiago

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available The importance of the present article is that it tries to reflect on generating theoretical orientations on didactic strategies to improve the literacy in the students of the school Mercedes Diaz of the parish Sabana de Mendoza, municipality Sucre, Trujillo state. Methodologically, the research was documentary, descriptive, supported by the postulates of Lev Vygotsky (1993, Piaget (1978 and Emilia Ferreiro (2000, Ortiz, (2008 Flower and Hayes (2009. The obtained results evidenced the effective participation by the teachers and the commitment acquired through the management and application of didactic strategies of reading and writing that can favor the learning of the subject that learns.

  7. A Strategy for Evaluating Pathway Analysis Methods

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-10-13

    1 A strategy for evaluating pathway analysis methods Chenggang Yu, Hyung Jun Woo, Xueping Yu+, Tatsuya Oyama, Anders Wallqvist, Jaques Reifman... practically applying such pathway analysis (PA) methods, we must first evaluate their performance and reliability, using datasets where the pathways...unavailable. Furthermore, previous evaluation strategies that have focused on defining ‘true answers’ are unable to systematically and objectively assess PA

  8. Does reading strategy instruction improve students’ comprehension?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oyetunji, Christianah Oluwatoyin

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available This paper describes the effect of reading strategy instruction on Second Language (L2 students’ reading comprehension in a Botswana College of Education. The intervention programme was implemented based on the observation that some trainee teachers failed to improve on their L2 proficiency after spending a year in the L2 classroom. Prior to the intervention, difficulty in reading and comprehending had been identified as one of the contributing factors to their failure to improve on their proficiency level. A reading comprehension test was used to collect data from participants who were trainee teachers at a College of Education in Botswana before and after the intervention. The six-week intervention programme focused on seven reading strategies, namely the use of background knowledge, self-questioning, inferencing, rereading, drawing conclusions, identifying main ideas and summarising. The findings suggest that strategy training can increase L2 students’ reading comprehension. Based on the findings, it is recommended that strategy training be introduced into the L2 syllabus of the primary school teacher trainees in all Botswana Colleges of Education.

  9. Improving health equity through theory-informed evaluations: a look at housing first strategies, cross-sectoral health programs, and prostitution policy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunn, James R; van der Meulen, Emily; O'Campo, Patricia; Muntaner, Carles

    2013-02-01

    The emergent realist perspective on evaluation is instructive in the quest to use theory-informed evaluations to reduce health inequities. This perspective suggests that in addition to knowing whether a program works, it is imperative to know 'what works for whom in what circumstances and in what respects, and how?' (Pawson & Tilley, 1997). This addresses the important issue of heterogeneity of effect, in other words, that programs have different effects for different people, potentially even exacerbating inequities and worsening the situation of marginalized groups. But in addition, the realist perspective implies that a program may not only have a greater or lesser effect, but even for the same effect, it may work by way of a different mechanism, about which we must theorize, for different groups. For this reason, theory, and theory-based evaluations are critical to health equity. We present here three examples of evaluations with a focus on program theories and their links to inequalities. All three examples illustrate the importance of theory-based evaluations in reducing health inequities. We offer these examples from a wide variety of settings to illustrate that the problem of which we write is not an exception to usual practice. The 'Housing First' model of supportive housing for people with severe mental illness is based on a theory of the role of housing in living with mental illness that has a number of elements that directly contradict the theory underlying the dominant model. Multisectoral action theories form the basis for the second example on Venezuela's revolutionary national Barrio Adentro health improvement program. Finally, decriminalization of prostitution and related health and safety policies in New Zealand illustrate how evaluations can play an important role in both refining the theory and contributing to improved policy interventions to address inequalities. The theoretically driven and transformative nature of these interventions create

  10. "Healthy Eating - Healthy Action": evaluating New Zealand's obesity prevention strategy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McLean, Rachael M; Hoek, Janet A; Buckley, Sue; Croxson, Bronwyn; Cumming, Jacqueline; Ehau, Terry H; Tanuvasa, Ausaga Fa'asalele; Johnston, Margaret; Mann, Jim I; Schofield, Grant

    2009-12-06

    New Zealand rates of obesity and overweight have increased since the 1980s, particularly among indigenous Māori people, Pacific people and those living in areas of high deprivation. New Zealand's response to the obesity epidemic has been The Healthy Eating-Healthy Action: Oranga Kai - Oranga Pumau (HEHA) Strategy ('the Strategy'), launched in 2003. Because the HEHA Strategy explicitly recognises the importance of evaluation and the need to create an evidence base to support future initiatives, the Ministry of Health has commissioned a Consortium of researchers to evaluate the Strategy as a whole. This paper discusses the Consortium's approach to evaluating the HEHA Strategy. It includes an outline of the conceptual framework underpinning the evaluation, and describes the critical components of the evaluation which are: judging to what extent stakeholders were engaged in the process of the strategy implementation and to what extent their feedback was incorporated in to future iterations of the Strategy (continuous improvement), to what extent the programmes, policies, and initiatives implemented span the target populations and priority areas, whether there have been any population changes in nutrition and/or physical activity outcomes or behaviours relating to those outcomes, and to what extent HEHA Strategy and spending can be considered value for money. This paper outlines our approach to evaluating a complex national health promotion strategy. Not only does the Evaluation have the potential to identify interventions that could be adopted internationally, but also the development of the Evaluation design can inform other complex evaluations.

  11. "Healthy Eating - Healthy Action": evaluating New Zealand's obesity prevention strategy

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-01-01

    Background New Zealand rates of obesity and overweight have increased since the 1980s, particularly among indigenous Māori people, Pacific people and those living in areas of high deprivation. New Zealand's response to the obesity epidemic has been The Healthy Eating-Healthy Action: Oranga Kai - Oranga Pumau (HEHA) Strategy ('the Strategy'), launched in 2003. Because the HEHA Strategy explicitly recognises the importance of evaluation and the need to create an evidence base to support future initiatives, the Ministry of Health has commissioned a Consortium of researchers to evaluate the Strategy as a whole. Methods This paper discusses the Consortium's approach to evaluating the HEHA Strategy. It includes an outline of the conceptual framework underpinning the evaluation, and describes the critical components of the evaluation which are: judging to what extent stakeholders were engaged in the process of the strategy implementation and to what extent their feedback was incorporated in to future iterations of the Strategy (continuous improvement), to what extent the programmes, policies, and initiatives implemented span the target populations and priority areas, whether there have been any population changes in nutrition and/or physical activity outcomes or behaviours relating to those outcomes, and to what extent HEHA Strategy and spending can be considered value for money. Discussion This paper outlines our approach to evaluating a complex national health promotion strategy. Not only does the Evaluation have the potential to identify interventions that could be adopted internationally, but also the development of the Evaluation design can inform other complex evaluations. PMID:19961625

  12. Strategies to improve cancer education materials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doak, L G; Doak, C C; Meade, C D

    1996-09-01

    To highlight the benefits of creating effective materials for cancer education; to describe strategies to enhance the suitability of materials for all readers, including those with limited literacy skills. Published research and education articles, health education models and theories, the National Cancer Institute Office of Cancer Communications, and personal experiences. Written materials, including visuals, commonly are used to convey cancer life-style risks, detection methods, treatments and procedures, and informed consent information. Such materials are relevant and suitable only when they can be read and understood and are matched to patients' reading abilities. A systematic process to achieve effective written materials includes assessing the target audience, limiting the educational objectives, focusing the content on the desired behaviors, presenting the context of the message first, and planning for reader interaction. The final step is verification of comprehension and suitability with the target audience. The creation of effective cancer education materials can be achieved by employing strategies that aim to enhance patient understandability, usability, relevancy, and motivation. Learner verification is a quality control process and a technique that helps ensure that materials are suitable for the intended audience and better matched to patients' learning needs. Nurses can improve the understandability of cancer education by using a variety of learning enhancement techniques and a set of organized planning steps. Such strategies can serve to improve the communication of cancer information to target groups with diverse literacy skills.

  13. Can Teacher Evaluation Improve Teaching?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Principal Leadership, 2013

    2013-01-01

    The answer to the question, Can evaluation improve teaching? is a qualified yes. Teacher evaluation has changed and the role of the principal has changed as well; the focus now is on evidence, not merely good judgment. With the right tools, systems, and support, it should be possible to help improve teaching performance and student learning…

  14. TPM- A KEY STRATEGY FOR PRODUCTIVITY IMPROVEMENT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J.S. DUREJA

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available During high growth era companies are making technical progress in automation and centralization of the plants, which needs large amount of manual work to maintain the automation systems. The strategy of maintaining the equipment of a plant is crucial for the effectiveness of manufacturing. Total productive maintenance (TPM is a maintenance program, which involves concepts for maintaining plant and equipments effectively. In this paper detailed implementation of TPM in the cold rolling plant is discussed. Results achieved are quite encouraging in terms of motivated employees, improvement in overall equipment effectiveness (OEE and reduction in no. of accidents on shop floor.

  15. Strategies for improving C4 photosynthesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    von Caemmerer, Susanne; Furbank, Robert T

    2016-06-01

    Recent activities to improve photosynthetic performance in crop plants has focused mainly on C3 photosynthesis where there are clear identified targets such as improving Rubisco kinetics, installation of a CO2 concentrating mechanism and alleviating limitations in chloroplast electron transport. Here we address strategies to improve photosynthetic performance in C4 plants, which utilize a CO2 concentrating mechanism, having evolved a complex blend of anatomy and biochemistry to achieve this. While the limitations to photosynthetic flux are not as well studied in C4 plants, work in transgenic Flaveria bidentis, a transformable model C4 dicot, and recent transcriptional analysis of leaves from diverse C4 plants, provides several gene candidates for improvement of carbon metabolism (such as pyruvate orthophosphate dikinase, phosphoenolpyruvate carboxylase and Rubisco) and for access of CO2 to phosphoenolpyruvate carboxylase in the mesophyll cells (such as carbonic anhydrase and CO2 porins). Chloroplast electron transport in C4 plants is shared between the two cell types, providing opportunities not only to alleviate limitations to flux through intersystem electron transport by targeting nuclear encoded proteins in the cytochrome (Cyt) b6/f complex, but in better sharing the harvesting of light energy between mesophyll and bundle sheath chloroplasts. Gene candidates for improvement of C4 photosynthesis could be utilized either through transgenic approaches or via mining natural allelic variation in sequenced populations of crop species. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. DESIGNING STRATEGIES FOR IMPROVING TOTAL QUALITY MANAGEMENT IN MANUFACTURING INDUSTRIES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alfian Nur Ubay

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available This research was aimed at designing strategies for improving total quality management at CV XYZ and PT HIJ. The research locations were selected intentionally with the consideration that the company is a middle class company that started to apply a study in line with the research topic. The experts were chosen using an approach method. This research used a descriptive approach and quantitative analysis through questionnaires using purposive sampling. The stages began with data processing, i.e. testing the questionnaire quality through validity and reliability tests, making a causality diagram, evaluating the implementation levels of each company by giving evaluation scales based on the existing condition, making House of Quality (HOQ using QFD methods, and then analyzing the problem solutions produced from the QFD methods with 5W + IH analysis, and finally determining the improvement priorities using Fuzzy AHP methods. The results were the strategies for improving total quality management /TQM of CV XYZ, namely the factor that plays the most important role was improving the quality management performance. The actor that has the competence to carry out the TQM improvement is the director. The prioritized goal to be achieved is a commitment to improve the quality of goods and services.  The prioritized strategy used in improving TQM is carrying out SOP consistently.Keywords: strategies, improvement, TQM, manufacturing company, fuzzy AHPABSTRAKPenelitian ini bertujuan merancang strategi peningkatan manajemen mutu terpadu pada CV XYZ dan PT HIJ. Pemilihan lokasi penelitian dilakukan secara sengaja dengan pertimbangan bahwa perusahaan tersebut merupakan perusahaan kelas menengah yang mulai menerapkan kajian sesuai dengan topik penelitian. Penentuan pakar dilakukan dengan metode pendekatan secara sengaja. Adapun penelitian ini menggunakan pendekatan deskriptif dan analisa kuantitatif dengan menyebarkan kuesioner secara sengaja (purposive sampling

  17. Readiness Enhancement Management Strategies (REMS): a proof of concept and evaluation feasibility study of staff training to improve service engagement by people with personality difficulties.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarke, M; Jinks, M; McMurran, M

    2015-09-01

    One third of people diagnosed with PD do not complete treatment and non-completion is associated with poorer clinical outcomes. Equipping staff to be better able to engage this client group is important, and web-based, self-directed learning is a potentially cost-effective way to train staff. This study examined the implementation of a web-based training programme called Readiness Enhancement Management Strategies (REMS) in three types of service. Completion rates were 94.4% in community health services; 92.3% in prison offender health services; and 46.5% in probation services. Staff found the content of REMS acceptable and useful. This study demonstrated that staff in NHS and criminal justice settings can complete REMS, but staff in probation services are challenged by time pressures and limited computer access. Staff at probation sites were less familiar with PD issues compared with the NHS staff. A web-based staff training programme called Readiness Enhancement Management Strategies (REMS) was developed to promote the engagement of people with personality difficulties in treatment. This 'proof of concept' study examined the REMS implementation process, its acceptability and the feasibility of using service data for future evaluation. Staff in six services working with people diagnosed with personality disorder or undiagnosed people with personality difficulties were eligible to participate: two community health services, two prison offender health services and two probation services. Of 92 eligible staff, 74 were available to undertake REMS. These staff completed knowledge and acceptability surveys and rated service user engagement with treatment. The proportion of treatment sessions attended by service users was collected for a 30-week period. REMS completion rates were community - 94.4%, prison - 92.3% and probation - 46.5%. Three quarters of participants rated REMS as 7 out of 10 or higher. All teams were able to provide service data for the study period

  18. Strategies for Evaluating Undergraduate Degree Programs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coyle, James P.

    2011-01-01

    Evaluating higher education degree programs is an arduous task. This paper suggests innovative strategies for addressing four types of challenges that commonly occur during program evaluation: identifying theoretical models for evaluation, balancing potentially conflicting standards, accommodating faculty differences, and aligning courses.…

  19. Approved Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategies

    Data.gov (United States)

    U.S. Department of Health & Human Services — The Food and Drug Administration Amendments Act of 2007 gave FDA the authority to require a Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategy (REMS) from manufacturers to...

  20. Efficient information theoretic strategies for classifier combination, feature extraction and performance evaluation in improving false positives and false negatives for spam e-mail filtering.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zorkadis, V; Karras, D A; Panayotou, M

    2005-01-01

    Spam emails are considered as a serious privacy-related violation, besides being a costly, unsolicited communication. Various spam filtering techniques have been so far proposed, mainly based on Naïve Bayesian algorithms. Other Machine Learning algorithms like Boosting trees, or Support Vector Machines (SVM) have already been used with success. However, the number of False Positives (FP) and False Negatives (FN) resulting through applying various spam e-mail filters still remains too high and the problem of spam e-mail categorization cannot be solved completely from a practical viewpoint. In this paper, we propose a novel approach for spam e-mail filtering based on efficient information theoretic techniques for integrating classifiers, for extracting improved features and for properly evaluating categorization accuracy in terms of FP and FN. The goal of the presented methodology is to empirically but explicitly minimize these FP and FN numbers by combining high-performance FP filters with high-performance FN filters emerging from a previous work of the authors [Zorkadis, V., Panayotou, M., & Karras, D. A. (2005). Improved spam e-mail filtering based on committee machines and information theoretic feature extraction. Proceedings of the International Joint Conference on Neural Networks, July 31-August 4, 2005, Montreal, Canada]. To this end, Random Committee-based filters along with ADTree-based ones are efficiently combined through information theory, respectively. The experiments conducted are of the most extensive ones so far in the literature, exploiting widely accepted benchmarking e-mail data sets and comparing the proposed methodology with the Naive Bayes spam filter as well as with the Boosting tree methodology, the classification via regression and other machine learning models. It is illustrated by means of novel information theoretic measures of FP & FN filtering performance that the proposed approach is very favorably compared to the other rival methods

  1. A strategy for evaluating pathway analysis methods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Chenggang; Woo, Hyung Jun; Yu, Xueping; Oyama, Tatsuya; Wallqvist, Anders; Reifman, Jaques

    2017-10-13

    Researchers have previously developed a multitude of methods designed to identify biological pathways associated with specific clinical or experimental conditions of interest, with the aim of facilitating biological interpretation of high-throughput data. Before practically applying such pathway analysis (PA) methods, we must first evaluate their performance and reliability, using datasets where the pathways perturbed by the conditions of interest have been well characterized in advance. However, such 'ground truths' (or gold standards) are often unavailable. Furthermore, previous evaluation strategies that have focused on defining 'true answers' are unable to systematically and objectively assess PA methods under a wide range of conditions. In this work, we propose a novel strategy for evaluating PA methods independently of any gold standard, either established or assumed. The strategy involves the use of two mutually complementary metrics, recall and discrimination. Recall measures the consistency of the perturbed pathways identified by applying a particular analysis method to an original large dataset and those identified by the same method to a sub-dataset of the original dataset. In contrast, discrimination measures specificity-the degree to which the perturbed pathways identified by a particular method to a dataset from one experiment differ from those identifying by the same method to a dataset from a different experiment. We used these metrics and 24 datasets to evaluate six widely used PA methods. The results highlighted the common challenge in reliably identifying significant pathways from small datasets. Importantly, we confirmed the effectiveness of our proposed dual-metric strategy by showing that previous comparative studies corroborate the performance evaluations of the six methods obtained by our strategy. Unlike any previously proposed strategy for evaluating the performance of PA methods, our dual-metric strategy does not rely on any ground truth

  2. A critical evaluation of the STRATEGY project

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Howard, B.J.; Liland, A.; Beresford, N.A.

    2004-01-01

    out on 101 selected countermeasures, (including rural waste disposal options), a model was developed to aid optimising countermeasure strategies and a method of carrying out participatory decision-making suggested. The outputs of the project are described and critically evaluated.......The STRATEGY project (sustainable restoration and long-term management of contaminated rural, urban and industrial ecosystems; www.strategy-ec.org.uk) addressed the need for a holistic decision framework for the selection of optimal remediation strategies for long-term sustainable management...... of contaminated areas in Western Europe. The project considered both technical and social aspects of implementing restoration strategies for urban and rural environments. The importance of considering socially relevant objectives in addition to the dose reduction was emphasised. A critical evaluation was carried...

  3. Improved Droop Control Strategy for Grid-Connected Inverters

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Abusara, Mohammad; Sharkh, Suleiman; Guerrero, Josep M.

    2015-01-01

    An improved control strategy for grid-connected inverters within microgrids is presented in this paper. The strategy is based on the classical P-ω and Q-V droop method. The improvement in the proposed control strategy is twofold: Firstly, the transient response of the droop controller is improved...... are presented to validate the model and demonstrate the controller capabilities....

  4. Rationale, design and methodology of a trial evaluating three strategies designed to improve sedation quality in intensive care units (DESIST study).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walsh, Timothy S; Kydonaki, Kalliopi; Antonelli, Jean; Stephen, Jacqueline; Lee, Robert J; Everingham, Kirsty; Hanley, Janet; Uutelo, Kimmo; Peltola, Petra; Weir, Christopher J

    2016-03-04

    To describe the rationale, design and methodology for a trial of three novel interventions developed to improve sedation-analgesia quality in adult intensive care units (ICUs). 8 clusters, each a Scottish ICU. All mechanically ventilated sedated patients were potentially eligible for inclusion in data analysis. Cluster randomised design in 8 ICUs, with ICUs randomised after 45 weeks baseline data collection to implement one of four intervention combinations: a web-based educational programme (2 ICUs); education plus regular sedation quality feedback using process control charts (2 ICUs); education plus a novel sedation monitoring technology (2 ICUs); or all three interventions. ICUs measured sedation-analgesia quality, relevant drug use and clinical outcomes, during a 45-week preintervention and 45-week postintervention period separated by an 8-week implementation period. The intended sample size was >100 patients per site per study period. The primary outcome was the proportion of 12 h care periods with optimum sedation-analgesia, defined as the absence of agitation, unnecessary deep sedation, poor relaxation and poor ventilator synchronisation. Secondary outcomes were proportions of care periods with each of these four components of optimum sedation and rates of sedation-related adverse events. Sedative and analgesic drug use, and ICU and hospital outcomes were also measured. Multilevel generalised linear regression mixed models will explore the effects of each intervention taking clustering into account, and adjusting for age, gender and APACHE II score. Sedation-analgesia quality outcomes will be explored at ICU level and individual patient level. A process evaluation using mixed methods including quantitative description of intervention implementation, focus groups and direct observation will provide explanatory information regarding any effects observed. The DESIST study uses a novel design to provide system-level evaluation of three contrasting complex

  5. "Healthy Eating - Healthy Action": evaluating New Zealand's obesity prevention strategy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tanuvasa Ausaga

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background New Zealand rates of obesity and overweight have increased since the 1980s, particularly among indigenous Māori people, Pacific people and those living in areas of high deprivation. New Zealand's response to the obesity epidemic has been The Healthy Eating-Healthy Action: Oranga Kai - Oranga Pumau (HEHA Strategy ('the Strategy', launched in 2003. Because the HEHA Strategy explicitly recognises the importance of evaluation and the need to create an evidence base to support future initiatives, the Ministry of Health has commissioned a Consortium of researchers to evaluate the Strategy as a whole. Methods This paper discusses the Consortium's approach to evaluating the HEHA Strategy. It includes an outline of the conceptual framework underpinning the evaluation, and describes the critical components of the evaluation which are: judging to what extent stakeholders were engaged in the process of the strategy implementation and to what extent their feedback was incorporated in to future iterations of the Strategy (continuous improvement, to what extent the programmes, policies, and initiatives implemented span the target populations and priority areas, whether there have been any population changes in nutrition and/or physical activity outcomes or behaviours relating to those outcomes, and to what extent HEHA Strategy and spending can be considered value for money. Discussion This paper outlines our approach to evaluating a complex national health promotion strategy. Not only does the Evaluation have the potential to identify interventions that could be adopted internationally, but also the development of the Evaluation design can inform other complex evaluations.

  6. FAB (Functionally Alert Behavior Strategies) to Improve Self-Control

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pagano, John

    2015-01-01

    This paper describes the FAB (Functionally Alert Behavior) Strategies approach to improve behavior in children and adolescents with complex behavioral challenges. FAB Strategies include evidence-based environmental adaptations, sensory modulation, positive behavioral support, and physical self-regulation strategies. FAB Strategies can be used by…

  7. Peer-based behavioural strategies to improve chronic disease self-management and clinical outcomes: evidence, logistics, evaluation considerations and needs for future research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Funnell, Martha Mitchell

    2010-06-01

    The diagnosis of a chronic disease such as diabetes generally evokes strong emotions and often brings with it the need to make changes in lifestyle behaviours, such as diet, exercise, medication management and monitoring clinical and metabolic parameters. The diagnosis thus affects not only the person diagnosed but also the family members. Chronic illnesses are largely self-managed with approximately 99% of the care becoming the responsibility of patients and their families or others involved in the daily management of their illnesses. While the responsibility for outcomes, such as metabolic control and chronic complications, are shared with the health care team, the daily decisions and behaviours adopted by patients clearly have a strong influence on their future health and well-being. While diabetes self-management education is essential, it is generally not sufficient for patients to sustain behaviours and cope with a lifetime of diabetes. Peers have been proposed as one method for assisting patients to deal with the behavioural and affective components of diabetes and to provide ongoing self-management support. This paper first describes effective behavioural strategies in diabetes, based on multiple studies and/or meta-analyses, and then provides examples of their use by peers or in peer-based programmes in diabetes. A comprehensive search using the MEDLINE and Cinahl databases was conducted. Key search terms included peer mentors, peer leaders, peer educators, lay health workers and community health workers. Studies that clearly identified behavioural strategies used by peers were included.

  8. A systematic review of hand hygiene improvement strategies: a behavioural approach

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huis, A.; Achterberg, T. van; Bruin, M. de; Grol, R.; Schoonhoven, L.; Hulscher, M.E.J.L.

    2012-01-01

    ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Many strategies have been designed and evaluated to address the problem of low hand hygiene (HH) compliance. Which of these strategies are most effective and how they work is still unclear. Here we describe frequently used improvement strategies and related determinants of

  9. A systematic review of hand hygiene improvement strategies: a behavioural approach

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huis, A.; Achterberg, van T.; Bruin, de M.; Grol, R.; Schoonhoven, L.; Hulscher, M.

    2012-01-01

    Background: Many strategies have been designed and evaluated to address the problem of low hand hygiene (HH) compliance. Which of these strategies are most effective and how they work is still unclear. Here we describe frequently used improvement strategies and related determinants of behaviour

  10. A systematic review of hand hygiene improvement strategies: a behavioural approach

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huis, A.; van Achterberg, T.; de Bruin, M.; Grol, R.; Schoonhoven, L.; Hulscher, M.

    2012-01-01

    Background Many strategies have been designed and evaluated to address the problem of low hand hygiene (HH) compliance. Which of these strategies are most effective and how they work is still unclear. Here we describe frequently used improvement strategies and related determinants of behaviour

  11. Dissemination Strategies to Improve Implementation of the PHS Smoking Cessation Guideline in MCH Public Health Clinics: Experimental Evaluation Results and Contextual Factors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manfredi, Clara; Cho, Young Ik; Warnecke, Richard; Saunders, Stephen; Sullivan, Myrtis

    2011-01-01

    We report results from an experimental study that tested the effectiveness of dissemination interventions to improve implementation of smoking cessation guidelines in maternal and child public health clinics. We additionally examine individual clinic results for contextual explanations not apparent from the experimental findings alone. Twelve…

  12. Evaluation of different operational strategies for lithium ion battery systems connected to a wind turbine for primary frequency regulation and wind power forecast accuracy improvement

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Swierczynski, Maciej Jozef; Stroe, Daniel Ioan; Stan, Ana-Irina

    2012-01-01

    High penetration levels of variable wind energy sources can cause problems with their grid integration. Energy storage systems connected to wind turbine/wind power plants can improve predictability of the wind power production and provide ancillary services to the grid. This paper investigates ec...

  13. Designing Effective School Improvement Strategies. Newsletter

    Science.gov (United States)

    Center for Comprehensive School Reform and Improvement, 2009

    2009-01-01

    Across the country, educators in schools that have not met their targets for improved student learning are considering next steps. As a first step, a school improvement plan that is grounded in data and based on a comprehensive needs assessment can provide a framework for effecting change for a school's programming, student support systems, and…

  14. Evaluating the US Counter-ISIL Strategy

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-05-25

    publication or sale of copyrighted images is not permissible. iii Abstract Evaluating the US Counter-ISIL Strategy, by LTC Jason A. Curl, US Army, 42...search.proquest.com/docview/1721190276?accountid=28992. 83 Jay Sekulow, Rise of ISIS: A Threat We Can’t Ignore (New York: Howard Books , 2014), 41. 15...finances. Fissures with Al Qaeda and other jihadist groups could also hurt their brand appeal and trim the amount of outside donor financial support they

  15. A preferential attachment strategy for connectivity link addition strategy in improving the robustness of interdependent networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Xingyuan; Cao, Jianye; Li, Rui; Zhao, Tianfang

    2017-10-01

    Given the same two networks and only one-to-one interlinks are allowed, apparently interdependent networks coupled by these two networks has the optimal robustness when we connect every pair of the same nodes in these two networks. According to the structure of this interdependent network with the optimal robustness, we propose a preferential attachment strategy. And by applying this preferential attachment strategy to three existing connectivity link addition strategies RA (random addition strategy), LD (low degree addition strategy) and LIDD (low inter degree-degree difference addition strategy), we find that each improved strategy is obviously better than before in improving the robustness of interdependent networks. Our findings can provide guidance on connectivity link addition strategy to improve robustness of interdependent networks against cascading failures.

  16. Improving Screening Strategies for Prostate Cancer

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    T. Wolters (Tineke)

    2010-01-01

    textabstractTh is thesis describes research on screening for prostate cancer. To improve understanding of the thesis, some background information will be provided in this introduction. First, a short description of the prostate and of prostate cancer will be given in Chapter 1, followed by

  17. Cost-effectiveness of a team and leaders-directed strategy to improve nurses' adherence to hand hygiene guidelines: A cluster randomised trial

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Brink-Huis, A.M.; Hulscher, M.E.J.L.; Adang, E.M.; Grol, R.P.; Achterberg, T. van; Schoonhoven, L.

    2013-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Many strategies have been designed and evaluated to address poor hand hygiene compliance. Unfortunately, well-designed economic evaluations of hand hygiene improvement strategies are lacking. OBJECTIVE: To compare the cost-effectiveness of two successful implementation strategies for

  18. Multimodal strategies to improve surgical outcome

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kehlet, Henrik; Wilmore, Douglas W

    2002-01-01

    anesthesia in elective operations, and pilot studies of fast track surgical procedures using the multimodality approach. RESULTS: The introduction of newer approaches to perioperative care has reduced both morbidity and mortality in surgical patients. In the future, most elective operations will become day...... pathophysiology and implementation of care regimes to reduce the stress of an operation, will continue to accelerate rehabilitation associated with decreased hospitalization and increased satisfaction and safety after discharge. Developments and improvements of multimodal interventions within the context of "fast...

  19. An Improved Phase Disposition SPWM Strategy for Cascaded Multilevel Inverter

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jinbang Xu

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The Carrier Phase Shifted (CPS strategy is conventional for cascaded multilevel inverter, because it can naturally ensure all cascaded cells to output balanced power. However, in point of spectra of the output line voltage, CPS is suboptimal to Phase Disposition (PD strategy, because the latter can not naturally ensure power balance. This paper presents an improved PD strategy, inspiration from the disposition of CPS strategy triangle carriers. Just reconstructing the triangle carriers of PD strategy, it can not only reserve the waveform quality of the line voltage to be optimal, but also naturally ensure the output power of each cascaded cells to be balanced.

  20. Improvement strategies in ovine artificial insemination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anel, L; Alvarez, M; Martinez-Pastor, F; Garcia-Macias, V; Anel, E; de Paz, P

    2006-10-01

    Artificial insemination in ram is scarcely widespread comparing with other domestic species. This has been due not only to fertility results being irregular and low but also because of the difficulty in the application of enhancements such as the use of frozen-thawed sperm. Although there is a lot of information on the use of different options to improve these AI results (such as transcervical application, the use of thawed sperm, etc.) commercial programmes can be classified on two general categories: those using refrigerated semen (15 degrees C) by superficial intracervical deposition (vaginal), and, more restricted, those using thawed sperm by intrauterine deposition (laparoscopy). In the present work, we have summarized our viewpoint on three general research lines for the improvement of AI results in sheep: semen preservation, AI procedures and semen assessment. Briefly, in ram it is necessary to develop a medium term methodology of sperm refrigeration (3-5 days), which would allow the distribution of sperm doses to a widespread area. Nevertheless, it is also necessary to develop an intrauterine transcervical AI technique, which allows thawed semen to be applied by vaginal insemination. Besides, the low predictive value of classic assessment techniques limits the ability to adjust the number of spermatozoa per dose according to its actual fertility.

  1. Evaluation of teaching and learning strategies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    SK Lechner

    2001-08-01

    Full Text Available With the growing awareness of the importance of teaching and learning in universities and the need to move towards evidence-based teaching, it behooves the professions to re-examine their educational research methodology. While the what, how and why of student learning have become more explicit, the professions still struggle to find valid methods of evaluating the explosion of new innovation in teaching/learning strategies. This paper discusses the problems inherent in applying traditional experimental design techniques to advances in educational practice.

  2. Evaluating the Legitimacy of Contemporary Legal Strategies for Obesity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morain, Stephanie

    2015-12-01

    Contemporary legal strategies for obesity raise troubling questions regarding individual liberty and the legitimate scope of public health authority. This article argues that the predominant approach to assessing public health legitimacy--John Stuart Mill's "harm principle"--may be unsuitable for evaluating the legitimacy of legal strategies for obesity. The article proposes an alternative test for assessing the legitimate scope of public health authority: John Rawls's liberal principle of legitimacy. It outlines how Rawls's principle would evaluate obesity policies, and contrasts this evaluation to that of Mill. The alternative test avoids some of the limitations of the Millian approach, and may offer an improved mechanism for assessing the liberty effects of policies for obesity and other public health activities.

  3. Strategies to improve diet in older adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Mary Ann

    2013-02-01

    It is estimated that by 2050 there will be 2 billion people aged 60 years and older in the world. The evidence base for the health benefits of good nutrition and physical activity, as well as weight loss among overweight and obese adults, is growing and a number of policies and guidelines are available to guide health professionals in serving older people at various stages of the lifecycle. There are many potential influences on dietary habits including individual factors, families and friends, community characteristics, the food and supplement industry, and public policy. This review focuses on the evidence base for factors influencing diet in older adults, food insecurity, Na, vitamin D, vitamin B12, protein, obesity and the benefits of energy restriction in overweight and obese older adults. Research is needed to continue to increase the evidence base for appropriate ways to improve diet and health in older people. Also, much of the available information is from the US, so there is a need to conduct research in other areas of the world.

  4. Strategies for improving library user education programme in ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This study determines strategies for improving library user education in universities in Benue State. The main purpose of this study is to determine the strategies for students' positive attitudes towards library user education. The study adopted a descriptive survey research design. Population of the study was 6,253 and ...

  5. Strategy to improve the burden of gestational diabetes in African ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Strategy to improve the burden of gestational diabetes in African women: Rwandan perspective. Herbert T. Mapira, David K. Tumusiime, Kevin Yarasheski, Nadine Rujeni, Todd W. Cade, Eugene Mutimura ...

  6. Teacher’s comprehensive training strategy for improving didactics performance

    OpenAIRE

    Pozas, W. J; Marrero, O. S.

    2014-01-01

    The paper describes a Teacher’s comprehensive training strategy for improving didactics performance, together with its theoretical foundations. The strategy is structured into several dimensions related to teachers’ development (lesson planning, continuing education and research). It is organized into two phases and seven stages intended to improve leadership in the teaching-learning process. The finding are the expression of a comprehensive approach to school organization at Services Polytec...

  7. Evaluation of Three New Strategies to Fight Obesity in Families

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Luley

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Aims. To evaluate 3 strategies to reduce weight in obese families. Research design and methods. 142 obese parents and 119 obese children kept a fat-calorie restriction diet. On top of this diet, the families were randomized in a three-factorial design to one or more of three weight-loss strategies: (1 an additional diet preferring carbohydrates having a low glycemic index (dual diet, (2 financial incentive, and (3 telemonitoring of weight and physical activity. Results. All children improved their BMI-SDS by 0.18±0.25 (P<.001 independently of the weight-loss strategy. In parents, relative losses of weight (kg were −6.4% versus −4.0% for dual diet versus calorie restriction (P=.029, −6.9% versus −3.4% for with or without financial incentive (P=.002, and −8.0% versus −4.8% for with or without telemonitoring (P=.033. The weight loss after financial incentive plus dual diet plus telemonitoring was −14.4%. Conclusions. All strategies were effective in adults, in particular when combined. Children improved their BMI-SDS regardless of the strategy.

  8. Improved immunization strategy to reduce energy consumption on nodes traffic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuan, Jiazheng; Zhao, Dongyan; Long, Keping; Zheng, Yongrong

    2017-04-01

    The increasing requirement of transmission network sizes would result in huge energy consumption with communication traffic. Green communication technologies are expected to help in reducing energy consumption impact to environment. Therefore, it is important to design energy-efficient strategy that can decrease energy consumption. This paper proposes to use the acquaintance and improved targeted immunization strategies from complex systems to resolve energy consumption issues and uses traffic as measure standard to obtain a stable threshold. The simulation results show that the improved control strategy is better and more effective to save as much energy as possible.

  9. Evaluation of sexual communication message strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evans, W Douglas; Davis, Kevin C; Umanzor, Cindy; Patel, Kajal; Khan, Munziba

    2011-05-20

    Parent-child communication about sex is an important proximal reproductive health outcome. But while campaigns to promote it such as the Parents Speak Up National Campaign (PSUNC) have been effective, little is known about how messages influence parental cognitions and behavior. This study examines which message features explain responses to sexual communication messages. We content analyzed 4 PSUNC ads to identify specific, measurable message and advertising execution features. We then develop quantitative measures of those features, including message strategies, marketing strategies, and voice and other stylistic features, and merged the resulting data into a dataset drawn from a national media tracking survey of the campaign. Finally, we conducted multivariable logistic regression models to identify relationships between message content and ad reactions/receptivity, and between ad reactions/receptivity and parents' cognitions related to sexual communication included in the campaign's conceptual model. We found that overall parents were highly receptive to the PSUNC ads. We did not find significant associations between message content and ad reactions/receptivity. However, we found that reactions/receptivity to specific PSUNC ads were associated with increased norms, self-efficacy, short- and long-term expectations about parent-child sexual communication, as theorized in the conceptual model. This study extends previous research and methods to analyze message content and reactions/receptivity. The results confirm and extend previous PSUNC campaign evaluation and provide further evidence for the conceptual model. Future research should examine additional message content features and the effects of reactions/receptivity.

  10. Evaluating genetic containment strategies for transgenic plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, David; Natesan, Ellen

    2006-03-01

    One of the primary concerns about genetically engineered crop plants is that they will hybridize with wild relatives, permitting the transgene to escape into the environment. The likelihood that a transgene will spread in the environment depends on its potential fitness impact. The fitness conferred by various transgenes to crop and/or wild-type hybrids has been evaluated in several species. Different strategies have been developed for reducing the probability and impact of gene flow, including physical separation from wild relatives and genetic engineering. Mathematical models and empirical experimental evidence suggest that genetic approaches have the potential to effectively prevent transgenes from incorporating into wild relatives and becoming established in wild populations that are not reproductively isolated from genetically engineered crops.

  11. Evaluation of Potential LSST Spatial Indexing Strategies

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nikolaev, S; Abdulla, G; Matzke, R

    2006-10-13

    The LSST requirement for producing alerts in near real-time, and the fact that generating an alert depends on knowing the history of light variations for a given sky position, both imply that the clustering information for all detections is available at any time during the survey. Therefore, any data structure describing clustering of detections in LSST needs to be continuously updated, even as new detections are arriving from the pipeline. We call this use case ''incremental clustering'', to reflect this continuous updating of clustering information. This document describes the evaluation results for several potential LSST incremental clustering strategies, using: (1) Neighbors table and zone optimization to store spatial clusters (a.k.a. Jim Grey's, or SDSS algorithm); (2) MySQL built-in R-tree implementation; (3) an external spatial index library which supports a query interface.

  12. Evaluating economic costs and benefits of climate resilient livelihood strategies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Liu

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available A major challenge for international development is to assist the poorest regions to achieve development targets while taking climate change into account. Such ‘climate resilient development’ (CRD must identify and implement adaptation strategies for improving livelihoods while also being cost-effective. While the idea that climate resilience and development goals should be compatible is often discussed, empirical evaluations of the economic impacts of actual CRD investments are practically non-existent. This paper outlines a framework to evaluate economic returns to CRD and applies it in two adaptation strategies trialed in Nusa Tenggara Barat Province, eastern Indonesia. The evaluation framework is composed of three models: a household benefit cost model, a diffusion model, and a regional benefit cost model. The models draw upon the impact evaluation, technology diffusion, and risk assessment literatures, respectively. The analyzes are based on expert opinion and locally-derived information, and hence can be applied in data-poor situations typical of developing countries. Our results explore economic costs and benefits at the household and regional scale, and we identify key input variables that greatly influence the economic returns of the strategies. These variables should therefore be a focus of ongoing investment. We also discuss how the framework is more generally applicable, its limitations including challenges in accounting for less tangible social and ecosystem service benefits, potentially leading to the underestimation of impacts, and how the approach should be complemented by qualitative methods.

  13. Two different strategies to facilitate involvement in healthcare improvements: a Swedish county council initiative.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andersson, Ann-Christine; Idvall, Ewa; Perseius, Kent-Inge; Elg, Mattias

    2014-09-01

    From a management point of view, there are many different approaches from which to choose to engage staff members in initiatives to improve performance. The present study evaluated how two different types of improvement strategies facilitate and encourage involvement of different professional groups in health-care organizations. Empirical data of two different types of strategies were collected within an improvement project in a County Council in Sweden. The data analysis was carried out through classifying the participants' profession, position, gender, and the organizational administration of which they were a part, in relation to their participation. An improvement project in a County Council in Sweden. Designed Improvement Processes consisted of n=105 teams and Intrapreneurship Projects of n=202 projects. Two different types of improvement strategies, Designed Improvement Processes and Intrapreneurship Projects. How two different types of improvement strategies facilitate and encourage involvement of different professional groups in healthcare organizations. Nurses were the largest group participating in both improvement initiatives. Physicians were also well represented, although they seemed to prefer the less structured Intrapreneurship Projects approach. Assistant nurses, being the second largest staff group, were poorly represented in both initiatives. This indicates that the benefits and support for one group may push another group aside. Managers need to give prerequisites and incentives for staff who do not participate in improvements to do so. Comparisons of different types of improvement initiatives are an underused research strategy that yields interesting and thoughtful results.

  14. Optimizing strategies to improve interprofessional practice for veterans, part 1

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bhattacharya SB

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Shelley B Bhattacharya,1–3 Michelle I Rossi,1,2 Jennifer M Mentz11Geriatric Research Education and Clinical Center (GRECC, Veteran's Affairs Pittsburgh Healthcare System, 2University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Pittsburgh, PA, USA; 3Albert Schweitzer Fellowship Program, Pittsburgh, PA, USAIntroduction: Interprofessional patient care is a well-recognized path that health care systems are striving toward. The Veteran's Affairs (VA system initiated interprofessional practice (IPP models with their Geriatric Evaluation and Management (GEM programs. GEM programs incorporate a range of specialties, including but not limited to, medicine, nursing, social work, physical therapy and pharmacy, to collaboratively evaluate veterans. Despite being a valuable resource, they are now faced with significant cut-backs, including closures. The primary goal of this project was to assess how the GEM model could be optimized at the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania VA to allow for the sustainability of this important IPP assessment. Part 1 of the study evaluated the IPP process using program, patient, and family surveys. Part 2 examined how well the geriatrician matched patients to specialists in the GEM model. This paper describes Part 1 of our study.Methods: Three strategies were used: 1 a national GEM program survey; 2 a veteran/family satisfaction survey; and 3 an absentee assessment.Results: Twenty-six of 92 programs responded to the GEM IPP survey. Six strategies were shared to optimize IPP models throughout the country. Of the 34 satisfaction surveys, 80% stated the GEM clinic was beneficial, 79% stated their concerns were addressed, and 100% would recommend GEM to their friends. Of the 24 absentee assessments, the top three reasons for missing the appointments were transportation, medical illnesses, and not knowing/remembering about the appointment. Absentee rate diminished from 41% to 19% after instituting a reminder phone call policy.Discussion: Maintaining the

  15. Teacher’s comprehensive training strategy for improving didactics performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pozas, W. J

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available The paper describes a Teacher’s comprehensive training strategy for improving didactics performance, together with its theoretical foundations. The strategy is structured into several dimensions related to teachers’ development (lesson planning, continuing education and research. It is organized into two phases and seven stages intended to improve leadership in the teaching-learning process. The finding are the expression of a comprehensive approach to school organization at Services Polytechnic School “Horacio Cobiellas Domínguez” resulting in teachers’ academic and scientific development and a significant growth of the staff scientific potentials manifested in scientific forum enrolment. The resulting impact should lead to a general use of the proposed strategy in the Polytechnic school web. Key words: professional performance, pedagogic professional performance, didactic professional performance, teachers’ developmental strategy

  16. Evaluation of Sexual Communication Message Strategies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Khan Munziba

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Parent-child communication about sex is an important proximal reproductive health outcome. But while campaigns to promote it such as the Parents Speak Up National Campaign (PSUNC have been effective, little is known about how messages influence parental cognitions and behavior. This study examines which message features explain responses to sexual communication messages. We content analyzed 4 PSUNC ads to identify specific, measurable message and advertising execution features. We then develop quantitative measures of those features, including message strategies, marketing strategies, and voice and other stylistic features, and merged the resulting data into a dataset drawn from a national media tracking survey of the campaign. Finally, we conducted multivariable logistic regression models to identify relationships between message content and ad reactions/receptivity, and between ad reactions/receptivity and parents' cognitions related to sexual communication included in the campaign's conceptual model. We found that overall parents were highly receptive to the PSUNC ads. We did not find significant associations between message content and ad reactions/receptivity. However, we found that reactions/receptivity to specific PSUNC ads were associated with increased norms, self-efficacy, short- and long-term expectations about parent-child sexual communication, as theorized in the conceptual model. This study extends previous research and methods to analyze message content and reactions/receptivity. The results confirm and extend previous PSUNC campaign evaluation and provide further evidence for the conceptual model. Future research should examine additional message content features and the effects of reactions/receptivity.

  17. Adaptive Landing Gear: Optimum Control Strategy and Potential for Improvement

    OpenAIRE

    Grzegorz Mikułowski; Łukasz Jankowski

    2009-01-01

    An adaptive landing gear is a landing gear (LG) capable of active adaptation to particular landing conditions by means of controlled hydraulic force. The objective of the adaptive control is to mitigate the peak force transferred to the aircraft structure during touch-down, and thus to limit the structural fatigue factor. This paper investigates the ultimate limits for improvement due to various strategies of active control. Five strategies are proposed and investigated numerically using a~va...

  18. Improving credibility evaluations on Wikipedia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lucassen, T.; Schmettow, Martin; Wiering, Caro H.; Pieters, Jules M.; Boer, Henk

    2011-01-01

    In this chapter, ongoing research on trust in Wikipedia is used as a case study to illustrate the design process of a support tool for Wikipedia, following the ASCE-model. This research is performed from a cognitive perspective and aims at users actively evaluating the credibility of information on

  19. Insights from the evaluation of a provincial healthy eating strategy in Nova Scotia, Canada.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sim, S Meaghan; Kirk, Sara F L

    2013-10-01

    Healthy Eating Nova Scotia represents the first provincial comprehensive healthy eating strategy in Canada and a strategy that is framed within a population-health model. Five years after strategy launch, our objective was to evaluate Healthy Eating Nova Scotia to determine perceptions of strategy implementation and strategy outputs. The focus of the current paper is on the findings of this evaluation. We conducted an evaluation of the strategy through three activities that included a document review, survey of key stakeholders and in-depth interviews with key strategy informants. The findings from each of the activities were integrated to determine what has worked well with strategy implementation, what could be improved and what outputs have resulted. The evaluation was conducted in the Canadian province of Nova Scotia. Participants for this evaluation included survey respondents (n 120) and key informants (n 16). A total of 156 documents were also reviewed. Significant investments have been made towards inter-sectoral partnerships and resourcing that has provided the necessary leadership and momentum for the strategy. Policy development has been leveraged through the strategy primarily in the health and education sectors and is perceived as a visible success. Clarity of human resource roles and funding within the context of a provincial strategy may be beneficial for continued strategy implementation, as is expansion of policy development. Known to be the first evaluation of its kind, these findings and related considerations will be of interest to policy makers developing and implementing similar strategies in their own jurisdictions.

  20. Evaluate to Improve: Useful Approaches to Student Evaluation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Golding, Clinton; Adam, Lee

    2016-01-01

    Many teachers in higher education use feedback from students to evaluate their teaching, but only some use these evaluations to improve their teaching. One important factor that makes the difference is the teacher's approach to their evaluations. In this article, we identify some useful approaches for improving teaching. We conducted focus groups…

  1. Recommendations for evaluation of health care improvement initiatives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parry, Gareth J; Carson-Stevens, Andrew; Luff, Donna F; McPherson, Marianne E; Goldmann, Donald A

    2013-01-01

    Intensive efforts are underway across the world to improve the quality of health care. It is important to use evaluation methods to identify improvement efforts that work well before they are replicated across a broad range of contexts. Evaluation methods need to provide an understanding of why an improvement initiative has or has not worked and how it can be improved in the future. However, improvement initiatives are complex, and evaluation is not always well aligned with the intent and maturity of the intervention, thus limiting the applicability of the results. We describe how initiatives can be grouped into 1 of 3 improvement phases-innovation, testing, and scale-up and spread-depending on the degree of belief in the associated interventions. We describe how many evaluation approaches often lead to a finding of no effect, consistent with what has been termed Rossi's Iron Law of Evaluation. Alternatively, we recommend that the guiding question of evaluation in health care improvement be, "How and in what contexts does a new model work or can be amended to work?" To answer this, we argue for the adoption of formative, theory-driven evaluation. Specifically, evaluations start by identifying a program theory that comprises execution and content theories. These theories should be revised as the initiative develops by applying a rapid-cycle evaluation approach, in which evaluation findings are fed back to the initiative leaders on a regular basis. We describe such evaluation strategies, accounting for the phase of improvement as well as the context and setting in which the improvement concept is being deployed. Finally, we challenge the improvement and evaluation communities to come together to refine the specific methods required so as to avoid the trap of Rossi's Iron Law. Copyright © 2013. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  2. Strategies and knowledge gaps for improving nanomaterial biocompatibility.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Xiangang; Sun, Anqi; Kang, Weilu; Zhou, Qixing

    2017-05-01

    With rapid development of nanotechnology and nanomaterials, nanosafety has attracted wide attention in all fields related to nanotechnology. As well known, a grand challenge in nanomaterial applications is their biocompatibility. It is urgent to explore effective strategies to control the unintentional effects. Although many novel methods for the synthesis of biocompatible and biodegradable nanomaterials are reported, the control strategy of nanotoxicity remains in its infancy. It is urgent to review the archived strategies for improving nanomaterial biocompatibility to clarify what we have done and where we should be. In this review, the achievements and challenges in nanomaterial structure/surface modifications and size/shape controls were analyzed. Moreover, the chemical and biological strategies to make nanomaterial more biocompatible and biodegradable were compared. Finally, the concerns that have not been studied well were prospected, involving unintended releases, life-cycle, occupational exposure and methodology. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. A Novel Exploration Algorithm Based on a Improvement Strategy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rachel Gartshore

    2005-12-01

    Full Text Available In this paper we present a strategy for the problem of exploring an unknown 2D environment. Existing techniques can be methodical, goal oriented or non-reactive to additional knowledge received at each new viewpoint. We present an approach which is not goal driven, but rather seeks new unseen areas to view and explore. The novelty of the strategy presented is the use of a view-improvement technique along with an optimal viewpoint planning method for the calculation and selection of the next-best-viewpoint. The strategy is designed for a sensor system with a limited field-of-view. Example explorations are presented and we demonstrate that the strategy finds new areas to view without exhaustive searching.

  4. Adaptive Landing Gear: Optimum Control Strategy and Potential for Improvement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Grzegorz Mikułowski

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available An adaptive landing gear is a landing gear (LG capable of active adaptation to particular landing conditions by means of controlled hydraulic force. The objective of the adaptive control is to mitigate the peak force transferred to the aircraft structure during touch-down, and thus to limit the structural fatigue factor. This paper investigates the ultimate limits for improvement due to various strategies of active control. Five strategies are proposed and investigated numerically using a~validated model of a real, passive landing gear as a reference. Potential for improvement is estimated statistically in terms of the mean and median (significant peak strut forces as well as in terms of the extended safe sinking velocity range. Three control strategies are verified experimentally using a laboratory test stand.

  5. [Strategies for patient participation in continuing improvement of clinical safety].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saturno, Pedro J

    2009-06-01

    Strategies for patient participation in quality improvement, as an active part of processes or providing relevant information when asked, have progressed to a great extent for the last few years, influenced by the emphasis on patient-focused care as a key dimension for quality and, lately, by the emphasis on patient safety -a dimension for which the patient contribution can not be ignored. However, these strategies have not been fully implemented and used in most quality management systems. This article aims to make it easier to select the appropriate strategies for a given context, by describing them, grouped in three main themes (mobilising patients for patient safety; promoting active participation of patients in the prevention of safety incidents; requesting and using the relevant information for quality improvement that patients can provide), illustrating them with examples, and pointing out some of the obstacles for implementing them.

  6. Strategy to improve the burden of gestational diabetes in African ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Gestational diabetes is a high risk factor for T2D, and increases the risk to T2D for women and their offspring later in life. Thus, improving maternal and child cardiometabolic health in Africa is needed through integrated gestational diabetes screening, and cost-effective sustainable strategies to build healthcare staff capacity, ...

  7. Learning Organization and Transfer: Strategies for Improving Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weldy, Teresa G.

    2009-01-01

    Purpose: This study aims to explore a relationship between the learning organization and transfer of training as strategies for learning and managing knowledge to make performance improvements and gain or maintain a competitive advantage. Design/methodology/approach: Various similarities are identified in the literature that are indicative of a…

  8. Strategies for improving the economic status of female-headed ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The study was conducted in seven districts in Manicaland and Mashonaland East Provinces of Zimbabwe. It sought to analyse the situation of female smallholder farmers with a view to determining innovative strategies that could be employed to improve their socioeconomic status. A sample of 600 smallholder communal ...

  9. Nature-based strategies for improving urban health and safety

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michelle C. Kondo; Eugenia C. South; Charles C. Branas

    2015-01-01

    Place-based programs are being noticed as key opportunities to prevent disease and promote public health and safety for populations at-large. As one key type of place-based intervention, nature-based and green space strategies can play an especially large role in improving health and safety for dwellers in urban environments such as US legacy cities that lack nature...

  10. Coping strategies for managing occupational stress for improved ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Occupational stress is receiving increasing concern as killer of workers and productivity deterrent. This paper assessed its management and some coping strategies, with a view to improving productivity among workers. The paper adopted literature review approach to x-ray the concept of occupational stress, symptoms of ...

  11. PERFORMANCE IMPROVEMENT STRATEGIES USED BY MANAGERS IN THE PRIVATE SECTOR

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raþiu Patricia

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract: There are many situations in professional life when for various reasons we are employed in jobs that do not meet our emotional expectations our professional capabilities, our passions and therefore performance on that job will not be high. Analysis of the causes of under-utilization of human potential and adoption of appropriate strategies according to employee needs help reduce staff turnover costs. The main objective of the present paper consists in identifying managerial strategies which contribute to the improvement of the employees’ performances by stimulating their motivation, and the extent to which they are used in the managerial practice. Based on literature review we realized an integrated model and developed a classification, that present our own vision regarding performance improvement strategies. Our classification divides strategies for improving employees’ performances into four main groups: by employees’ development, by rewarding employees, by modifying the job description, by employee involvement in the organization. Starting from this model, through two types of questionnaires we have made an empirical research among managers as well as among office personnel, in order to capture both perspectives regarding the pursued objectives. For the present paper we will present only research results obtained for performance improvement strategies by employees’ development because support a higher degree of generality and do not depend on the organization characteristics. A quantitative data analize from the two samples show that there are differences between managers and employees perception when it comes to strategies used in their organizations and also manager did not know which determines employees to strive in order to improve their performance and obtain better results. The strategies to improve the employee’s performances, proposed within this article have the role to show the fact that managers cannot

  12. IMPROVING THE READING COMPREHENSION ABILITY THROUGH WEBBING STRATEGY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Suud Purnomo

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available This study was designed to improve the students’ reading comprehension ability through webbing strategy which is designed to find a strategy of teaching reading skills in expository texts. The study employed a collaborative classroom action research design in which the researcher and the collaborator worked together designing the lesson plan, implementing the action, observing the action, and reflecting the action. The subjects of this research were 40 students the eleventh grade students of SMA PGRI Mojosari in the 2010/2011 academic year. The webbing strategy was successful in improving both the students’ ability in comprehending expository texts and the students’ involvement in reading activities. The strategy increased students’ mean scores and the students’ individual score percentage from preliminary study to Cycle 2 ranging from 64.83 to 78.17 or the students’ individual score percentage extended from 42.50% to 85% equal or greater than 70% of 40 students. The results of the second cycle indicated higher scores in which predetermined criteria of success met in the second cycle. The majority students showed active involvement (92.50% in the third meeting of Cycle 2. Keywords: reading comprehension, expository texts, webbing strategy

  13. Strategies for improving drug delivery: nanocarriers and microenvironmental priming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khalid, Ayesha; Persano, Stefano; Shen, Haifa; Zhao, Yuliang; Blanco, Elvin; Ferrari, Mauro; Wolfram, Joy

    2017-07-01

    The ultimate goal in the field of drug delivery is to exclusively direct therapeutic agents to pathological tissues in order to increase therapeutic efficacy and eliminate side effects. This goal is challenging due to multiple transport obstacles in the body. Strategies that improve drug transport exploit differences in the characteristics of normal and pathological tissues. Within the field of oncology, these concepts have laid the groundwork for a new discipline termed transport oncophysics. Areas covered: Efforts to improve drug biodistribution have mainly focused on nanocarriers that enable preferential accumulation of drugs in diseased tissues. A less common approach to enhance drug transport involves priming strategies that modulate the biological environment in ways that favor localized drug delivery. This review discusses a variety of priming and nanoparticle design strategies that have been used for drug delivery. Expert opinion: Combinations of priming agents and nanocarriers are likely to yield optimal drug distribution profiles. Although priming strategies have yet to be widely implemented, they represent promising solutions for overcoming biological transport barriers. In fact, such strategies are not restricted to priming the tumor microenvironment but can also be directed toward healthy tissue in order to reduce nanoparticle uptake.

  14. Using an energy management strategy to drive improved business results and improve manufacturing operations

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Leroux, Marc

    2010-09-15

    Energy typically represents the single largest controllable cost in manufacturing, and is under constant scrutiny by all levels of management. In this paper we will examine the role and components of an energy management strategy, and focus on the benefits of looking at the strategy from a business perspective. We will then examine the role that an effective program, either existing or new, can play in a collaborative manufacturing environment, and how these improvements can reduce energy requirements while maintaining, or improving productivity.

  15. The role of message strategy in improving hand hygiene compliance rates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, Ronald E

    2015-11-01

    Despite increased attention to hand hygiene over the past decade compliance rates remain relatively low. Although there have been a number of improvements in the science of hand hygiene, very little attention has been devoted to the messages that promote it. A total of 86 health care workers who are members of Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology chapters participated in an online evaluation of 6 message strategies. The participants evaluated the strategies on ease of understanding, believability, and whether the message strategies were likely to lead to increased handwashing. Of the 6 strategies--ego, social, sensory, routine, acute need, and ration--the social strategy was rated the most likely to lead to action. The sensory strategy was seen as not only least likely but also counterproductive. ICPs should add a social message strategy to communication programs promoting hand hygiene. Although further testing is needed, ego, routine, and acute need strategies show promise for tapping into motivations that lead to improved compliance. Copyright © 2015 Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology, Inc. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. EXPOSING LEARNERS WITH LEARNING STRATEGIES IN STRATEGY TRAING: ONE OF THE WAYS FOR IMPROVING THEIR STUDY SKILL

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kartika Nuswantara

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Recognizing our own learning strategies is an effective way to help ourselves to self evaluate for what we have done in our own learning. One among other factors leading to a successful learning is due to the effective learning strategies. However, not all learners are aware of what they have been doing in learning, or they even sometimes do not know how to learn. If this is the problem, learning strategy training can be very beneficial for the learners with this problem. Why should be through strategy training? The answer might lie on the fact that strategy is quite amenable to change, and by nature, teachable as well as learneable (Oxford, 1990. In addition, Nuswantara (2008 also found out that the successful learners (i.e. in learning English were triggered by the courage of using various learning strategies, the more varied the learners are willing to try out, the broader the chance for success. Training is the way that can be selected to present to the learners’ various strategies that they can choose and at the same time employ when learning is taken place. Moreover, by means of training, learners are made aware of the strategy, and they can mend their own strategy, as a result, they become more self - directed rather than dependent. This article attempts to frame out from the perspective of how to bring reading strategies that are applicable for handling various reading content texts to the learners, and present the result of a one-group experimental study. Thus, training is prepared for college learners who are inevitably deal with various English content textbooks and the final aim of the training is to improve learners’ study skills. Then, one group experimental study using correlated sample provides some evidences supporting the effectiveness of the training. Specifying on reading strategies, SQ3R that is joined with other learning strategies involving writing activity, annotating a text and paraphrasing/summarizing is exposed to

  17. A Design Taxonomy Utilizing Ten Major Evaluation Strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Willis, Barry

    This paper discusses ten evaluation strategies selected on the basis of their general acceptance and their relatively unique approach to the field: (1) State, "Countenance of Evaluation"; (2) Stufflebeam, "Decision Centered Evaluation (CIPP)"; (3) Provus, "Discrepancy Evaluation"; (4) Scriven, "Goal Free Evaluation"; (5) Scriven, "Formative and…

  18. The social strategy cone: Towards a framework for evaluating social media strategies

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Effing, Robin; Spil, Antonius A.M.

    2016-01-01

    Social media is growing rapidly. Providing both risks and opportunities for organizations as it does. The social strategy cone is developed for evaluating social media strategies. This framework comprises of seven key elements of social media strategies as based on a systematic literature review and

  19. Evolution of strategies to improve preclinical cardiac safety testing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gintant, Gary; Sager, Philip T; Stockbridge, Norman

    2016-07-01

    The early and efficient assessment of cardiac safety liabilities is essential to confidently advance novel drug candidates. This article discusses evolving mechanistically based preclinical strategies for detecting drug-induced electrophysiological and structural cardiotoxicity using in vitro human ion channel assays, human-based in silico reconstructions and human stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes. These strategies represent a paradigm shift from current approaches, which rely on simplistic in vitro assays that measure blockade of the Kv11.1 current (also known as the hERG current or IKr) and on the use of non-human cells or tissues. These new strategies have the potential to improve sensitivity and specificity in the early detection of genuine cardiotoxicity risks, thereby reducing the likelihood of mistakenly discarding viable drug candidates and speeding the progression of worthy drugs into clinical trials.

  20. A communication strategy to improve nutrition in Indonesia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griffiths, M; Nobbe, E

    1985-01-01

    As an experimental project, the Nutrition Communication and Behavior Change Component (NCBC) of the Indonesian Nutrition Development Program (UPGK) showed how social marketing could further the national program's goal of significantly improving the nutrition of Indonesia's young children and pregnant and nursing women. The social marketing approach successfully developed nutrition communication materials that were responsive to the needs, desires, and resources of the communities, particularly of the mothers and volunteer nutrition workers. Between 1977-79 Dr. I.B. Mantra, NCBC Director, established administrative and community infrastructures modeled after UPGK in 5 culturally diverse areas in Indonesia. In mid-1979, with technical assistance from Manoff International, the project departed from the approach of the national plan and embarked upon an unprecedented course with the formative evaluation of educational messages and a communication strategy. The success of the NCBC Component was to be judged by whether education -- as the sole intervention -- could produce significant improvements in the nutritional status of children and the improved nutrient intake of pregnant and lactating women in project communities. The 1st step was to design and execute qualitative research on the health and nutritional problems of children under 3 and pregnant and nursing women, consisting of in-depth household interviews, concept testing with mothers, and focus group interviews with kaders and community opinion leaders. Surveying was based on issues identified earlier by the Ministry of Health as most severe for the population overall. The qualitative investigation identified the need for change or reinforcement in particular nutrition-related behaviors. The target audience of mothers was segmented according to their needs during designated maternal stages and by the age-related dietary needs of their children under 3 years of age. This meant that only the most useful

  1. An Improved Ant Algorithm for Grid Task Scheduling Strategy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wei, Laizhi; Zhang, Xiaobin; Li, Yun; Li, Yujie

    Task scheduling is an important factor that directly influences the performance and efficiency of the system. Grid resources are usually distributed in different geographic locations, belonging to different organizations and resources' properties are vastly different, in order to complete efficiently, intelligently task scheduling, the choice of scheduling strategy is essential. This paper proposes an improved ant algorithm for grid task scheduling strategy, by introducing a new type pheromone and a new node redistribution selection rule. On the one hand, the algorithm can track performances of resources and tag it. On the other hand, add algorithm to deal with task scheduling unsuccessful situations that improve the algorithm's robustness and the successful probability of task allocation and reduce unnecessary overhead of system, shortening the total time to complete tasks. The data obtained from simulation experiment shows that use this algorithm to resolve schedule problem better than traditional ant algorithm.

  2. IMPROVING STUDENTS’ SKIMMING AND SCANNING IN READING SKILL BY APPLYING METACOGNITIVE STRATEGY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Siti Mariam

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Reading is one of the main four language skills that a learner needs to master in order to ensure success in learning English. To facilitate students in comprehending a text, the effective strategies should be used. One of the strategies is Meta-cognitive strategies. The objectives of the research are to identify students’ responses during learned process by using Meta-cognitive strategies and to investigate how high students’ improvement of skimming and scanning reading skill after learned by using Meta-cognitive strategies in recount text. Meta-cognitive strategies improve students to reflect on thought processes and to plan, monitor, and evaluate aspects of their learning. The participants were third semester of English department students of Islamic Education and Teacher Training Faculty of Walisongo State Islamic University.The reserch design was Classroom Action Research with 1 preliminary cycle and 2 cycles. This research was conducted from March, 2th 2015 until March, 21th 2015. Data collection technique was tests. Observations were done in each cycle. Tests form was given the students, they should answer 20 questions of multiple choice test. Then, the data were analyzed using mean (descriptive statistics to find out the improvements. Meta-cognitive strategies were applied in the teaching learning process by giving plan (giving task for students, monitoring, evaluating, and problem solving to the students. After collecting the data, the result showed the improvements of the students. Students’ average score in pre cycle test was 60. In the first cycle, the average score increased became 70. This score hadn’t met the minimum standard score yet 75. Therefore, second cycle was conducted. Students’ average score increased became 82.16. Students’ engagements also increased since the first cycle. Consequently, the objectives were reached. Based on the result, it could be concluded that Meta-cognitive strategy can improve the

  3. Improving Students’ Skimming and Scanning in Reading Skill by Applying Metacognitive Strategy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Siti Mariam

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Reading is one of the main four language skills that a learner needs to master in order to ensure success in learning English. To facilitate students in comprehending a text, the effective strategies should be used. One of the strategies is Meta-cognitive strategies. The objectives of the research are to identify students’ responses during learned process by using Meta-cognitive strategies and to investigate how high students’ improvement of skimming and scanning reading skill after learned by using Meta-cognitive strategies in recount text. Meta-cognitive strategies improve students to reflect on thought processes and to plan, monitor, and evaluate aspects of their learning. The participants were third semester of English department students of Islamic Education and Teacher Training Faculty of Walisongo State Islamic University.The reserch design was Classroom Action Research with 1 preliminary cycle and 2 cycles. This research was conducted from March, 2th 2015 until March, 21th 2015. Data collection technique was tests. Observations were done in each cycle. Tests form was given the students, they should answer 20 questions of multiple choice test. Then, the data were analyzed using mean (descriptive statistics to find out the improvements. Meta-cognitive strategies were applied in the teaching learning process by giving plan (giving task for students, monitoring, evaluating, and problem solving to the students. After collecting the data, the result showed the improvements of the students. Students’ average score in pre cycle test was 60. In the first cycle, the average score increased became 70. This score hadn’t met the minimum standard score yet 75. Therefore, second cycle was conducted. Students’ average score increased became 82.16. Students’ engagements also increased since the first cycle. Consequently, the objectives were reached. Based on the result, it could be concluded that Meta-cognitive strategy can improve the

  4. Improv(ing) the Academy: Applied Improvisation as a Strategy for Educational Development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rossing, Jonathan P.; Hoffmann-Longtin, Krista

    2016-01-01

    Improvisational theater training (or "improv") is a strategy employed by many business leaders and educators to cultivate creativity and collaboration amid change. Drawing on improv principles such as "Yes, And…" and "Make your scene partners look good," we explore the ways in which educational developers might apply…

  5. Auditing: A Strategy Evaluation Emphasis | Ukpai | Sophia: An ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    We found that effective internal audit helps in the strategy evaluation and control process in the organizations we studied. Our conclusion is that, the effective performance of internal audit is crucial for management to be able to evaluate and control strategy in modern organization. SOPHIA: An African Journal of Philosophy ...

  6. Peer Assisted Learning Strategy for Improving Students’ Physiologic Literacy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diana, S.

    2017-09-01

    Research about the implementation of the Peer Assisted Learning (PAL) strategy in Plant Physiology lecture has carried out, in which it aims to improve students’ physiologic literacy. The PAL strategy began with a briefing by the lecturers to the students tutor about pretest questions, followed by the interaction between student tutors with their peers to discuss response problems, terminated by answering responsiveness questions individually. This study used a quasi-experimental method, one - group pre-test post-test design. This design includes a group of students observed in the pre-test phase (tests carried out before PAL treatment) which is then followed by treatment with PAL and ends with post-test. The other students group (control) was given the pre-test and post-test only. The results showed that the PAL strategy can increase student’s physiologic literacy significantly. One of the weaknesses of students’ physiologic literacy is that they have not been able to read the graph. The faculties are encouraged to begin introducing and teaching material using a variety of strategies with scientific literacy aspects, for example teaching research-based material. All students respond positively to the PAL strategy.

  7. Using alternative feedback strategies to improve aircraft inspection performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaewkuekool, Sittichai

    The aircraft inspection and maintenance system consists of several interrelated human and machine components, with visual inspection playing a significant role in ensuring aircraft safety. Training has been identified as one of the most important intervention strategies for enhancing the quality and reliability of aircraft inspection. This process has the potential to be improved using advancements in computer technology, especially virtual reality (VR) technology, which is becoming increasingly more affordable and prevalent. In light of this situation, this study investigated the use of VR technology to support training in the improvement of aircraft inspection performance. An experiment was developed to investigate the use of performance and process feedback in both statistical and graphical forms in two different task environments. In addition, information on defect criticality, defect location, and occurrence of defect was provided to subjects to study the effectiveness of feedforward information on inspection performance. Specifically, the experiment involved the inspection of an aircraft cargo bay using VR technology with eye tracking movement devices and a 6 degree of freedom mouse for pointing and clicking on defects. Results from the feedback training indicated that providing process along with performance feedback improved inspection performance as evidenced in the speed, accuracy and search strategy measures. Similar results were shown for both task environments. However, the addition feedforward information in the heterogeneous task environment yielded ever better inspection performance, and process and performance feedback coupled with feedforward information on defect criticality, defect location, and occurrence of defect yielded the best inspection performance as seen in the speed, accuracy and search strategy measures. The findings of this study indicate that using a combination of training intervention strategies leads to an improvement in

  8. Competitive Strategies and Improved Performance of Selected Nigeria Telecommunication Companies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Waidi Adeniyi Akingbad

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The influence of globalization in telecommunication companies has greatly increased the level of competition in the industry and they are forced to be competitive to survive. Different types of strategies are put in place in order to be profitable and competitive. All these strategies are directed to attract, retain and maintain customers for continuous profitability. However, majority of them hardly measure the impact of their strategic innovation on their customers. The paper seeks to explore the influence of competitive strategies embarked upon by selected telecommunication companies in Nigeria on their performance. The paper also examines how competitive strategies could be implemented for improved customer satisfaction, retention and loyalty. Three null hypotheses were postulated to test the relationship between lower prices and customer satisfaction, uninterrupted trunk services and customer loyalty, and customer complaint handling and retention. Only customers using telephone service were selected as respondents from Lagos State. The state was stratified in to 20 local government council area and questionnaires were distributed to 125 respondents in each of them. The completion rate of the questionnaire in each of them is between 103 and 110. Survey research design was adopted to carry out the study. A structured questionnaire was designed and validated through the construct validity and tested for confirmation using the KMO measure of sampling adequacy. It was also made reliable using Cronbach’s Alpha test. From the study, findings revealed relationship between competitive strategies and customer satisfaction, retention and loyalty. The findings revealed that there is a relationship between competitive strategies, its constituents and performance of telecommunication companies. It is recommended that universal mobile telecommunication services (UMTS operators should adopt the culture of competitive strategies since it can

  9. A systematic review of hand hygiene improvement strategies: a behavioural approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Huis Anita

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Many strategies have been designed and evaluated to address the problem of low hand hygiene (HH compliance. Which of these strategies are most effective and how they work is still unclear. Here we describe frequently used improvement strategies and related determinants of behaviour change that prompt good HH behaviour to provide a better overview of the choice and content of such strategies. Methods Systematic searches of experimental and quasi-experimental research on HH improvement strategies were conducted in Medline, Embase, CINAHL, and Cochrane databases from January 2000 to November 2009. First, we extracted the study characteristics using the EPOC Data Collection Checklist, including study objectives, setting, study design, target population, outcome measures, description of the intervention, analysis, and results. Second, we used the Taxonomy of Behavioural Change Techniques to identify targeted determinants. Results We reviewed 41 studies. The most frequently addressed determinants were knowledge, awareness, action control, and facilitation of behaviour. Fewer studies addressed social influence, attitude, self-efficacy, and intention. Thirteen studies used a controlled design to measure the effects of HH improvement strategies on HH behaviour. The effectiveness of the strategies varied substantially, but most controlled studies showed positive results. The median effect size of these strategies increased from 17.6 (relative difference addressing one determinant to 49.5 for the studies that addressed five determinants. Conclusions By focussing on determinants of behaviour change, we found hidden and valuable components in HH improvement strategies. Addressing only determinants such as knowledge, awareness, action control, and facilitation is not enough to change HH behaviour. Addressing combinations of different determinants showed better results. This indicates that we should be more creative in the application of

  10. A systematic review of hand hygiene improvement strategies: a behavioural approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huis, Anita; van Achterberg, Theo; de Bruin, Marijn; Grol, Richard; Schoonhoven, Lisette; Hulscher, Marlies

    2012-09-14

    Many strategies have been designed and evaluated to address the problem of low hand hygiene (HH) compliance. Which of these strategies are most effective and how they work is still unclear. Here we describe frequently used improvement strategies and related determinants of behaviour change that prompt good HH behaviour to provide a better overview of the choice and content of such strategies. Systematic searches of experimental and quasi-experimental research on HH improvement strategies were conducted in Medline, Embase, CINAHL, and Cochrane databases from January 2000 to November 2009. First, we extracted the study characteristics using the EPOC Data Collection Checklist, including study objectives, setting, study design, target population, outcome measures, description of the intervention, analysis, and results. Second, we used the Taxonomy of Behavioural Change Techniques to identify targeted determinants. We reviewed 41 studies. The most frequently addressed determinants were knowledge, awareness, action control, and facilitation of behaviour. Fewer studies addressed social influence, attitude, self-efficacy, and intention. Thirteen studies used a controlled design to measure the effects of HH improvement strategies on HH behaviour. The effectiveness of the strategies varied substantially, but most controlled studies showed positive results. The median effect size of these strategies increased from 17.6 (relative difference) addressing one determinant to 49.5 for the studies that addressed five determinants. By focussing on determinants of behaviour change, we found hidden and valuable components in HH improvement strategies. Addressing only determinants such as knowledge, awareness, action control, and facilitation is not enough to change HH behaviour. Addressing combinations of different determinants showed better results. This indicates that we should be more creative in the application of alternative improvement activities addressing determinants such as

  11. Update: improvement strategies for peptide receptor scintigraphy and radionuclide therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Visser, Monique; Verwijnen, Suzanne M; de Jong, Marion

    2008-04-01

    Somatostatin receptor-targeting peptides are widely used for the imaging and therapy of neuroendocrine tumors. Peptide-receptor radionuclide therapy (PRRT) in neuroendocrine tumor patients with radiolabeled somatostatin analogs has resulted in symptomatic improvement, prolonged survival, and enhanced quality of life. The side-effects of PRRT are few and mostly mild, certainly when using kidney protective agents. If a more widespread use of PRRT is possible, such therapy might become the therapy of first choice in patients with metastasized or inoperable neuroendocrine gastroenteropancreatic tumors. Yet, much profit can be gained from improving the receptor-targeting strategies available and developing new strategies. This review presents an overview of several options to optimize receptor-targeted imaging and radionuclide therapy. These include the optimization of peptide analogs, increasing the number of receptors on the tumor site, and combining PRRT with other treatment strategies. The development of new peptide analogs with increased receptor-binding affinity and improved stability might lead to a higher accumulation of radioactivity inside tumor cells. Analogs of somatostatin have been widely studied. However, much profit can be gained in improving peptide analogs targeting other tumor-related receptors, including gastrin-releasing peptide (GRP) receptors, neurotensin (NT) receptors, cholecystokinin (CCK) receptors, and glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptors. Several peptide analogs targeting these receptors are well on their way to clinical utilization. The literature shows that it is possible to increase the receptor density on tumor cells by using different methods, which results in higher binding and internalization rates and thus a higher contrast during peptide-receptor scintigraphy. In PRRT treatment, this would enable the administration of higher therapeutic doses to tumors, which might lead to a higher cure rate in patients. Combinations of

  12. Mentoring approach improves evaluation capacity of ICTD ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    2016-06-09

    Jun 9, 2016 ... An innovative IDRC initiative is improving evaluation capacities of researchers studying Information and Communication Technologies for Development (ICTD). Developing Evaluation Capacity in ICTD (DECI) provides researchers from five IDRC-funded projects in Asia ongoing mentorship to learn and ...

  13. Evaluation of monitoring strategies for childhood asthma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brouwer, M L; Wijngaart, L S van den; Hugen, C A C; Gerrits, G P J M; Roukema, J; Merkus, P J F M

    2016-10-05

    The goal of monitoring pediatric asthma is to obtain and maintain asthma control, which is defined as minimizing asthma symptoms, restrictions to daily activities and the use of rescue medication. Long term goals include reducing the risk of fixed airflow limitation, and preventing asthma exacerbations and side effects of treatment. Several monitoring tools are available but no consensus exists on how to monitor patients in the most optimal way. Areas covered: In this review, we provide an overview of different tools and address general considerations on monitoring childhood asthma. Asthma care should be tailored to the individual patient. The health care professional should decide which monitoring strategy and frequency is optimal for the individual patient. Expert commentary: Personalized medicine should be the key issue in monitoring asthma in children. It is crucial to monitor disease activity and deterioration but there is no monitoring strategy that is clearly superior compared to others: The optimal strategy and frequency will vary between patients. Actually, both treatment and monitoring of pediatric asthma probably benefit from a personalized approach.

  14. Impact of teaching students to use evaluation strategies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aaron R. Warren

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available Students often make mistakes in physics courses and are expected to identify, correct, and learn from their mistakes, usually with some assistance from an instructor, textbook, or fellow students. This aid may come in many forms, such as problem solutions that are given to a class, tutoring to an individual student, or a peer discussion among several students. However, in each case a student relies upon an external agent in order to determine whether, and how, her work is mistaken. Consequently, the student’s learning process is largely contingent upon the availability and quality of external evaluating agents. One may suspect that if a student developed the ability to evaluate her own work, her dependence on external agents could be moderated and result in an enhancement of her learning. This paper presents the results of a study investigating the impact of novel activities that aim to teach students when, why, and how to use the strategies of unit analysis and special-case analysis. The data indicate that it is possible to help students dramatically improve their understanding of each strategy, and that this has a significant impact on problem-solving performance.

  15. Strategies to improve adherence to treatment in adolescents and young adults with cancer: a systematic review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robertson EG

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Eden G Robertson,1,2 Claire E Wakefield,1,2 Kate H Marshall,2 Ursula M Sansom-Daly1–3 1Discipline of Paediatrics, School of Women's and Children's Health, UNSW Medicine, University of New South Wales, University of New South Wales, Kensington, NSW, Australia; 2Behavioural Sciences Unit, Kids Cancer Centre, Sydney Children's Hospital, 3Sydney Youth Cancer Service, Prince of Wales/Sydney Children's Hospital, Randwick, NSW, Australia Purpose: Adolescents and young adults (AYAs with cancer have higher rates of nonadherence to treatment relative to younger and older cancer patients. Efforts to improve adherence in this population are therefore increasing. This review aimed: 1 to synthesize recommendations and strategies used to improve treatment adherence in AYAs with cancer, and 2 to summarize the available evidence supporting the efficacy of adherence-promoting strategies for AYAs with cancer.Methods: We conducted a systematic review with two stages: 1 a narrative stage, to analyze expert recommendations, and 2 an evaluative stage, to summarize quantitative evidence for interventions. Four electronic databases were searched for studies involving AYAs, aged 10–39 years, with cancer, published from 2005 to 2015. Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA guidelines were used to ensure quality of the review. The Delphi list was used to assess study quality.Results: Nine articles were identified in the narrative stage of the review. For the evaluative stage, out of 113 screened abstracts, only one eligible intervention was identified. Common themes of adherence-promoting strategies were grouped into five domains: developmental, communication, educational, psychological well-being, and logistical/management strategies. Strategies to address developmental stage and to improve communication were the most highly recommended to improve adherence. Few strategies focused on the role of the patient in adherence. One

  16. Two strategies to engineer flexible loops for improved enzyme thermostability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Haoran; Yan, Yihan; Zhang, Cheng; Dalby, Paul A

    2017-02-01

    Flexible sites are potential targets for engineering the stability of enzymes. Nevertheless, the success rate of the rigidifying flexible sites (RFS) strategy is still low due to a limited understanding of how to determine the best mutation candidates. In this study, two parallel strategies were applied to identify mutation candidates within the flexible loops of Escherichia coli transketolase (TK). The first was a "back to consensus mutations" approach, and the second was computational design based on ΔΔG calculations in Rosetta. Forty-nine single variants were generated and characterised experimentally. From these, three single-variants I189H, A282P, D143K were found to be more thermostable than wild-type TK. The combination of A282P with H192P, a variant constructed previously, resulted in the best all-round variant with a 3-fold improved half-life at 60 °C, 5-fold increased specific activity at 65 °C, 1.3-fold improved kcat and a Tm increased by 5 °C above that of wild type. Based on a statistical analysis of the stability changes for all variants, the qualitative prediction accuracy of the Rosetta program reached 65.3%. Both of the two strategies investigated were useful in guiding mutation candidates to flexible loops, and had the potential to be used for other enzymes.

  17. Leading clinical handover improvement: a change strategy to implement best practices in the acute care setting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarke, Christina M; Persaud, Drepaul David

    2011-03-01

    Many contemporary acute care facilities lack safe and effective clinical handover practices resulting in patient transitions that are vulnerable to discontinuities in care, medical errors, and adverse patient safety events. This article is intended to supplement existing handover improvement literature by providing practical guidance for leaders and managers who are seeking to improve the safety and the effectiveness of clinical handovers in the acute care setting. A 4-stage change model has been applied to guide the application of strategies for handover improvement. Change management and quality improvement principles, as well as concepts drawn from safety science and high-reliability organizations, were applied to inform strategies. A model for handover improvement respecting handover complexity is presented. Strategies targeted to stages of change include the following: 1. Enhancing awareness of handover problems and opportunities with the support of strategic directions, accountability, end user involvement, and problem complexity recognition. 2. Identifying solutions by applying and adapting best practices in local contexts. 3. Implementing locally adapted best practices supported by communication, documentation, and training. 4. Institutionalizing practice changes through integration, monitoring, and active dissemination. Finally, continued evaluation at every stage is essential. Although gaps in handover process and function knowledge remain, efforts to improve handover safety and effectiveness are still possible. Continued evaluation is critical in building this understanding and to ensure that practice changes lead to improvements in patient safety, organizational effectiveness, and patient and provider satisfaction. Through handover knowledge building, fundamental changes in handover policies and practices may be possible.

  18. Improving basic math skills through integrated dynamic representation strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    González-Castro, Paloma; Cueli, Marisol; Cabeza, Lourdes; Álvarez-García, David; Rodríguez, Celestino

    2014-01-01

    In this paper, we analyze the effectiveness of the Integrated Dynamic Representation strategy (IDR) to develop basic math skills. The study involved 72 students, aged between 6 and 8 years. We compared the development of informal basic skills (numbers, comparison, informal calculation, and informal concepts) and formal (conventionalisms, number facts, formal calculus, and formal concepts) in an experimental group (n = 35) where we applied the IDR strategy and in a Control group (n = 37) in order to identify the impact of the procedure. The experimental group improved significantly in all variables except for number facts and formal calculus. It can therefore be concluded that IDR favors the development of the skills more closely related to applied mathematics than those related to automatic mathematics and mental arithmetic.

  19. Current Strategies to Improve the Bioactivity of PEEK

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Rui; Tang, Tingting

    2014-01-01

    The synthetic thermoplastic polymer polyetheretherketone (PEEK) is becoming a popular component of clinical orthopedic and spinal applications, but its practical use suffers from several limitations. Although PEEK is biocompatible, chemically stable, radiolucent and has an elastic modulus similar to that of normal human bone, it is biologically inert, preventing good integration with adjacent bone tissues upon implantation. Recent efforts have focused on increasing the bioactivity of PEEK to improve the bone-implant interface. Two main strategies have been used to overcome the inert character of PEEK. One approach is surface modification to activate PEEK through surface treatment alone or in combination with a surface coating. Another strategy is to prepare bioactive PEEK composites by impregnating bioactive materials into PEEK substrate. Researchers believe that modified bioactive PEEK will have a wide range of orthopedic applications. PMID:24686515

  20. Improving Students’ Writing Performance: A Self-regulated Strategy Development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Reski Pilu

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available This research is Effective in teaching narrative writing to the students of the sixth semester of English students of English Study Program of Cokroaminoto Palopo University. This research aims to find out whether the use of POW + W = 2, H = 2 strategy efficacious to improve the students’ ability in writing of the sixth semester English department students of Cokroaminoto Palopo University. This research used a pre-experimental design. The population of this research was the sixth semester students of English department of Cokroaminoto University Palopo. The sample of this research was the sixth semester students where the total sample is 30 students. This research used cluster random sampling technique. The research data were collected by using instruments namely narrative text. Data on the students’ writing skill were analyzed by using descriptive and SPSS v.20 to find and analyzed the mean score, standar deviation and T-test. The results of the research that there is difference between pre-test and post-test, where the mean score of the pretest (74 is lower than the mean score of the post-test (86.58, It means that there is a significant improvement after treatment by using POW + WWW, W = 2, H = 2 as strategy in teaching short story writing. Therefore, The T-Test of the students’ writing in post-test was smaller than α (0.01 < 0.05, it can be concluded that using POW + WWW, W = 2, H = 2 is significance improving

  1. Improving the production of transgenic fish germlines: in vivo evaluation of mosaicism in zebrafish (Danio rerio using a green fluorescent protein (GFP and growth hormone cDNA transgene co-injection strategy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Márcio de Azevedo Figueiredo

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available In fish, microinjection is the method most frequently used for gene transfer. However, due to delayed transgene integration this technique almost invariably produces mosaic individuals and if the gene is not integrated into germ cells its transmission to descendants is difficult or impossible. We evaluated the degree of in vivo mosaicism using a strategy where a reporter transgene is co-injected with a transgene of interest so that potential germline founders can be easily identified. Transgenic zebrafish (Danio rerio were produced using two transgenes, both comprised of the carp beta-actin promoter driving the expression of either the green fluorescent protein (GFP reporter gene or the growth hormone cDNA from the marine silverside fish Odonthestes argentinensis. The methodology applied allowed a rapid identification of G0 transgenic fish and also detected which fish were transmitting transgenes to the next generation. This strategy also allowed inferences to be made about genomic transgene integration events in the six lineages produced and allowed the identification of one lineage transmitting both transgenes linked on the same chromosome. These results represent a significant advance in the reduction of the effort invested in producing a stable genetically modified fish lineage.

  2. [Strategies to improve influenza vaccination coverage in Primary Health Care].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Antón, F; Richart, M J; Serrano, S; Martínez, A M; Pruteanu, D F

    2016-04-01

    Vaccination coverage reached in adults is insufficient, and there is a real need for new strategies. To compare strategies for improving influenza vaccination coverage in persons older than 64 years. New strategies were introduced in our health care centre during 2013-2014 influenza vaccination campaign, which included vaccinating patients in homes for the aged as well as in the health care centre. A comparison was made on vaccination coverage over the last 4 years in 3 practices of our health care centre: P1, the general physician vaccinated patients older than 64 that came to the practice; P2, the general physician systematically insisted in vaccination in elderly patients, strongly advising to book appointments, and P3, the general physician did not insist. These practices looked after P1: 278; P2: 320; P3: 294 patients older than 64 years. Overall/P1/P2/P3 coverages in 2010: 51.2/51.4/55/46.9% (P=NS), in 2011: 52.4/52.9/53.8/50.3% (P=NS), in 2012: 51.9/52.5/55.3/47.6% (P=NS), and in 2013: 63.5/79.1/59.7/52.7 (P=.000, P1 versus P2 and P3; P=NS between P2 and P3). Comparing the coverages in 2012-2013 within each practice P1 (P=.000); P2 (P=.045); P3 (P=.018). In P2 and P3 all vaccinations were given by the nurses as previously scheduled. In P3, 55% of the vaccinations were given by the nurses, 24.1% by the GP, 9.7% rejected vaccination, and the remainder did not come to the practice during the vaccination period (October 2013-February 2014). The strategy of vaccinating in the homes for the aged improved the vaccination coverage by 5% in each practice. The strategy of "I've got you here, I jab you here" in P1 improved the vaccination coverage by 22%. Copyright © 2014 Sociedad Española de Médicos de Atención Primaria (SEMERGEN). Publicado por Elsevier España, S.L.U. All rights reserved.

  3. Behavioral Change Strategies for Improving Complementary Feeding and Breastfeeding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osendarp, Saskia J M; Roche, Marion L

    2016-01-01

    Improving infant and young child feeding (IYCF) practices, including breastfeeding and complementary feeding, has been identified as one of the most effective interventions to improve child survival, stunting and wasting. Evidence from randomized controlled trials suggests that effective promotion of breastfeeding and complementary feeding, with or without food provision, has the potential to improve IYCF practices and child nutrition. However, in many countries, breastfeeding practices and complementary feeding practices are still far from optimal. The lack of implementation of available, effective, affordable interventions in scale-up programs is in part attributed to a lack of innovative, creative and effective behavioral change strategies that enable and encourage caregivers. Successful behavioral change strategies should be based on a rigorous situational analysis and formative research, and the findings and insights of formative research should be used to further design interventions that address the identified barriers and enablers, to select delivery channels, and to formulate appropriate and effective messages. In addition, successful behavioral change interventions should a priori define and investigate the program impact pathway to target behavioral change and should assess intermediary behavioral changes and indicators to learn why the expected outcome was achieved or not achieved by testing the program theory. The design of behavioral change communication must be flexible and responsive to shifts in societies and contexts. Performance of adequate IYCF also requires investments to generate community demand through social mobilization, relevant media and existing support systems. Applying these principles has been shown to be effective in improving IYCF practices in Vietnam, Bangladesh and Ethiopia and is recommended to be adopted by other programs and countries in order to accelerate progress in improving child nutrition. © 2016 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  4. Evaluating Executive Strategies (Management Strategies and Teaching-Learning Strategies) of Graduate Curriculum: Case Study in Isfahan University

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rahmanpour, Muhammad; Ahmadi, Mojtaba; Hatami, Mostafa; Mirzaee, Hamzeh

    2017-01-01

    The present study seeks to evaluate executive strategies in graduate Curriculum of Isfahan University from the point of view of management and teaching-learning strategies. This study is an applied survey. The population comprised BA students and faculty members of the University of Isfahan. In order to do so, 141 professors and 278 students were…

  5. Photometric Redshifts with the LSST: Evaluating Survey Observing Strategies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graham, Melissa L.; Connolly, Andrew J.; Ivezić, Željko; Schmidt, Samuel J.; Jones, R. Lynne; Jurić, Mario; Daniel, Scott F.; Yoachim, Peter

    2018-01-01

    In this paper we present and characterize a nearest-neighbors color-matching photometric redshift estimator that features a direct relationship between the precision and accuracy of the input magnitudes and the output photometric redshifts. This aspect makes our estimator an ideal tool for evaluating the impact of changes to LSST survey parameters that affect the measurement errors of the photometry, which is the main motivation of our work (i.e., it is not intended to provide the “best” photometric redshifts for LSST data). We show how the photometric redshifts will improve with time over the 10 year LSST survey and confirm that the nominal distribution of visits per filter provides the most accurate photo-z results. The LSST survey strategy naturally produces observations over a range of airmass, which offers the opportunity of using an SED- and z-dependent atmospheric affect on the observed photometry as a color-independent redshift indicator. We show that measuring this airmass effect and including it as a prior has the potential to improve the photometric redshifts and can ameliorate extreme outliers, but that it will only be adequately measured for the brightest galaxies, which limits its overall impact on LSST photometric redshifts. We furthermore demonstrate how this airmass effect can induce a bias in the photo-z results, and caution against survey strategies that prioritize high-airmass observations for the purpose of improving this prior. Ultimately, we intend for this work to serve as a guide for the expectations and preparations of the LSST science community with regard to the minimum quality of photo-z as the survey progresses.

  6. Screenwriting: A Strategy for the Improvement of Writing Instructional Practices

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hernán Amado

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available This article presents a pedagogical experience that addresses the use of an instructional strategy called screenwriting aimed at improving the teaching of writing in an educational context. This pedagogical intervention took place in a private English language school, where three adult students willingly participated to create their own short scripts. The idea was to introduce and reinforce the importance of screenwriting to observe its usefulness in education. Students participated in writing workshops for a 3-month period. The workshops included the respective screenwriting theory and activities that helped them to achieve completion of their final stories. Students' final pieces proved that the writing instructional practices were enriching and beneficial.

  7. Evaluating and Improving Online Intelligence Courses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dr. Alexandra Luce

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Civilian, military and government institutions offer a wide range of courses on intelligence and are increasingly doing so online. While evaluation and improvement are critical to ensuring quality training and education, there is little research about how to evaluate and improve online intelligence courses. Based on the author’s experience developing and teaching such courses, this article offers four suggestions to those involved in online intelligence training and education: (1 conduct a key assumptions check; (2 ensure the course presentation embodies the principles of intelligence communication; (3 encourage creative freedom; and (4 build in mechanisms for feedback throughout the course.

  8. Evaluation of stem borer resistance management strategies for Bt ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Evaluation of stem borer resistance management strategies for Bt maize in Kenya based on alternative host refugia. ... However, for successful management of a refugia strategy, strict stewardship is required from appropriate government or community institutions. Key words: Refugia, cost-benefit analysis, Bt-maize, insect ...

  9. New strategies to improve food marketing to children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dietz, William H

    2013-09-01

    Federal efforts to address the impact of food marketing on children began more than thirty years ago, when the Federal Trade Commission sought comment on strategies to reduce young children's exposure to food advertising. The food, advertising, and television industries mounted a virulent response, and Congress withdrew the commission's authority to regulate unfair advertising to children. The same industries and Congress responded equally aggressively to the proposed nutrition criteria for food products marketed to children drafted by a working group of federal agencies in 2011. Although federal efforts over the past thirty years have led to modest improvements in food quality and marketing practices, commercial interests have consistently overridden the health concerns of children. Mobilization of parents as a political force to improve standards for food marketed to children, use of social media for counteradvertising, and the development of new technologies to decrease exposure to food advertisements could reduce the impact of food marketing to children.

  10. Implementation of multidimensional knowledge translation strategies to improve procedural pain in hospitalized children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stevens, Bonnie J; Yamada, Janet; Promislow, Sara; Stinson, Jennifer; Harrison, Denise; Victor, J Charles

    2014-11-25

    Despite extensive research, institutional policies, and practice guidelines, procedural pain remains undertreated in hospitalized children. Knowledge translation (KT) strategies have been employed to bridge the research to practice gap with varying success. The most effective single or combination of KT strategies has not been found. A multifaceted KT intervention, Evidence-based Practice for Improving Quality (EPIQ), that included tailored KT strategies was effective in improving pain practices and clinical outcomes at the unit level in a prospective comparative cohort study in 32 hospital units (16 EPIQ intervention and 16 Standard Care), in eight pediatric hospitals in Canada. In a study of the 16 EPIQ units (two at each hospital) only, the objectives were to: determine the effectiveness of evidence-based KT strategies implemented to achieve unit aims; describe the KT strategies implemented and their influence on pain assessment and management across unit types; and identify facilitators and barriers to their implementation. Data were collected from each EPIQ intervention unit on targeted pain practices and KT strategies implemented, through chart review and a process evaluation checklist, following four intervention cycles over a 15-month period. Following the completion of the four cycle intervention, 78% of 23 targeted pain practice aims across units were achieved within 80% of the stated aims. A statistically significant improvement was found in the proportion of children receiving pain assessment and management, regardless of pre-determined aims (p strategies implemented was 35 and included reminders, educational outreach and materials, and audit and feedback. Units successful in achieving their aims implemented more KT strategies than units that did not. No specific type of single or combination of KT strategies was more effective in improving pain assessment and management outcomes. Tailoring KT strategies to unit context, support from unit leadership

  11. Strategies for Evaluating Complex Environmental Education Programs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, V.

    2011-12-01

    Evidence for the effectiveness of environmental education programs has been difficult to establish for many reasons. Chief among them are the lack of clear program objectives and an inability to conceptualize how environmental education programs work. Both can lead to evaluations that make claims that are difficult to substantiate, such as significant changes in student achievement levels or behavioral changes based on acquisition of knowledge. Many of these challenges can be addressed by establishing the program theory and developing a logic model. However, claims of impact on larger societal outcomes are difficult to attribute solely to program activities. Contribution analysis may offer a promising method for addressing this challenge. Rather than attempt to definitively and causally link a program's activities to desired results, contribution analysis seeks to provide plausible evidence that can reduce uncertainty regarding the 'difference' a program is making to observed outcomes. It sets out to verify the theory of change behind a program and, at the same time, takes into consideration other influencing factors. Contribution analysis is useful in situations where the program is not experimental-there is little or no scope for varying how the program is implemented-and the program has been funded on the basis of a theory of change. In this paper, the author reviews the feasibility of using contribution analysis as a way of evaluating the impact of the GLOBE program, an environmental science and education program. Initially conceptualized by Al Gore in 1995, the program's implementation model is based on worldwide environmental monitoring by students and scientists around the globe. This paper will make a significant and timely contribution to the field of evaluation, and specifically environmental education evaluation by examining the usefulness of this analysis for developing evidence to assess the impact of environmental education programs.

  12. [Strategies for improving care of oncologic patients: SHARE Project results].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reñones Crego, María de la Concepción; Fernández Pérez, Dolores; Vena Fernández, Carmen; Zamudio Sánchez, Antonio

    2016-01-01

    Cancer treatment is a major burden for the patient and its family that requires an individualized management by healthcare professionals. Nurses are in charge of coordinating care and are the closest healthcare professionals to patient and family; however, in Spain, there are not standard protocols yet for the management of oncology patients. The Spanish Oncology Nursing Society developed between 2012 and 2014 the SHARE project, with the aim of establishing strategies to improve quality of life and nursing care in oncology patients. It was developed in 3 phases. First, a literature search and review was performed to identify nursing strategies, interventions and tools to improve cancer patients' care. At the second stage, these interventions were agreed within a group of oncology nursing experts; and at the third phase, a different group of experts in oncology care categorized the interventions to identify the ones with highest priority and most feasible to be implemented. As a result, 3 strategic actions were identified to improve nursing care during cancer treatment: To provide a named nurse to carry out the follow up process by attending to the clinic or telephonic consultation, develop therapeutic education with adapted protocols for each tumor type and treatment and ensure specific training for nurses on the management of the cancer patients. Strategic actions proposed in this paper aim to improve cancer patients' healthcare and quality of life through the development of advanced nursing roles based on a higher level of autonomy, situating nurses as care coordinators to assure an holistic care in oncology patients. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier España, S.L.U. All rights reserved.

  13. Gynecologic oncology group strategies to improve timeliness of publication.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bialy, Sally; Blessing, John A; Stehman, Frederick B; Reardon, Anne M; Blaser, Kim M

    2013-08-01

    The Gynecologic Oncology Group (GOG) is a multi-institution cooperative group funded by the National Cancer Institute to conduct clinical trials encompassing clinical and basic scientific research in gynecologic malignancies. These results are disseminated via publication in peer-reviewed journals. This process requires collaboration of numerous investigators located in diverse cancer research centers. Coordination of manuscript development is positioned within the Statistical and Data Center (SDC), thus allowing the SDC personnel to manage the process and refine strategies to promote earlier dissemination of results. A major initiative to improve timeliness utilizing the assignment, monitoring, and enforcement of deadlines for each phase of manuscript development is the focus of this investigation. Document improvement in timeliness via comparison of deadline compliance and time to journal submission due to expanded administrative and technologic initiatives implemented in 2006. Major steps in the publication process include generation of first draft by the First Author and submission to SDC, Co-author review, editorial review by Publications Subcommittee, response to journal critique, and revision. Associated with each step are responsibilities of First Author to write or revise, collaborating Biostatistician to perform analysis and interpretation, and assigned SDC Clinical Trials Editorial Associate to format/revise according to journal requirements. Upon the initiation of each step, a deadline for completion is assigned. In order to improve efficiency, a publications database was developed to track potential steps in manuscript development that enables the SDC Director of Administration and the Publications Subcommittee Chair to assign, monitor, and enforce deadlines. They, in turn, report progress to Group Leadership through the Operations Committee. The success of the strategies utilized to improve the GOG publication process was assessed by comparing the

  14. Using an organizational development strategy to improve residency training.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leider, H; Zigelman, R; Burg, F

    1989-07-01

    Medical students' preferences for residencies in internal medicine are in decline. To attract outstanding students, departments of medicine must strive to improve the quality of their training programs. In the setting of a university-affiliated residency program, the authors employed a strategy based on organization development principles to identify remediable educational problems and to facilitate the process of solving these problems. Residents, attending physicians, and administrators used a consensus-building method, the nominal group technique, to develop problem lists ranked by two criteria--relative importance and potential for solution. Problems of high importance and high potential for solution were identified and assigned to committees of housestaff and faculty for action. Management plans consisting of short-term and long-term interventions were created to solve each problem. These plans were widely accepted and short-term interventions were successfully implemented. This strategy represents a pragmatic approach to improving internal medicine residency programs because it focuses limited institutional resources on problems that are both important and amenable to change.

  15. Evaluation Strategies in Financial Education: Evaluation with Imperfect Instruments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robinson, Lauren; Dudensing, Rebekka; Granovsky, Nancy L.

    2016-01-01

    Program evaluation often suffers due to time constraints, imperfect instruments, incomplete data, and the need to report standardized metrics. This article about the evaluation process for the Wi$eUp financial education program showcases the difficulties inherent in evaluation and suggests best practices for assessing program effectiveness. We…

  16. Smoking cessation strategies for patients with asthma: improving patient outcomes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Perret JL

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Jennifer L Perret,1–3 Billie Bonevski,4 Christine F McDonald,2,3,5 Michael J Abramson6,7 1Allergy and Lung Health Unit, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, VIC, 2Institute for Breathing & Sleep, Melbourne, VIC, 3Department of Respiratory and Sleep Medicine, Austin Hospital, Melbourne, VIC, 4School of Medicine & Public Health, University of Newcastle, NSW, 5Department of Medicine, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, VIC, 6School of Public Health & Preventive Medicine, Monash University, Melbourne, VIC, 7Allergy, Immunology & Respiratory Medicine, The Alfred Hospital, Melbourne, VIC, Australia Abstract: Smoking is common in adults with asthma, yet a paucity of literature exists on smoking cessation strategies specifically targeting this subgroup. Adverse respiratory effects from personal smoking include worse asthma control and a predisposition to lower lung function and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Some data suggest that individuals with asthma are more likely than their non-asthmatic peers to smoke regularly at an earlier age. While quit attempts can be more frequent in smokers with asthma, they are also of shorter duration than in non-asthmatics. Considering these asthma-specific characteristics is important in order to individualize smoking cessation strategies. In particular, asthma-specific information such as “lung age” should be provided and longer-term follow-up is advised. Promising emerging strategies include reminders by cellular phone and web-based interventions using consumer health informatics. For adolescents, training older peers to deliver asthma education is another promising strategy. For smokers who are hospitalized for asthma, inpatient nicotine replacement therapy and counseling are a priority. Overall, improving smoking cessation rates in smokers with asthma may rely on a more personalized approach, with the potential for substantial health benefits to individuals and the population at large

  17. Evaluation of control strategies in forming processes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Calmano Stefan

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Products of forming processes are subject to quality fluctuations due to uncertainty in semi-finished part properties as well as process conditions and environment. An approach to cope with these uncertainties is the implementation of a closed-loop control taking into account the actual product properties measured by sensors or estimated by a mathematical process model. Both methods of uncertainty control trade off with a financial effort. In case of sensor integration the effort is the cost of the sensor including signal processing as well as the design and manufacturing effort for integration. In case of an estimation model the effort is mainly determined by the time and knowledge needed to derive the model, identify the parameters and implement the model into the PLC. The risk of mismatch between model and reality as well as the risk of wrong parameter identification can be assumed as additional uncertainty (model uncertainty. This paper evaluates controlled and additional uncertainty by taking into account process boundary conditions like the degree of fluctuations in semi-finished part properties. The proposed evaluation is demonstrated by the analysis of exemplary processes.

  18. Improved marathon performance by in-race nutritional strategy intervention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hansen, Ernst Albin; Emanuelsen, Anders; Gertsen, Robert Mørkegaard; Sørensen S, S R

    2014-12-01

    It was tested whether a marathon was completed faster by applying a scientifically based rather than a freely chosen nutritional strategy. Furthermore, gastrointestinal symptoms were evaluated. Nonelite runners performed a 10 km time trial 7 weeks before Copenhagen Marathon 2013 for estimation of running ability. Based on the time, runners were divided into two similar groups that eventually should perform the marathon by applying the two nutritional strategies. Matched pairs design was applied. Before the marathon, runners were paired based on their prerace running ability. Runners applying the freely chosen nutritional strategy (n = 14; 33.6 ± 9.6 years; 1.83 ± 0.09 m; 77.4 ± 10.6 kg; 45:40 ± 4:32 min for 10 km) could freely choose their in-race intake. Runners applying the scientifically based nutritional strategy (n = 14; 41.9 ± 7.6 years; 1.79 ± 0.11 m; 74.6 ± 14.5 kg; 45:44 ± 4:37 min) were targeting a combined in-race intake of energy gels and water, where the total intake amounted to approximately 0.750 L water, 60 g maltodextrin and glucose, 0.06 g sodium, and 0.09 g caffeine per hr. Gastrointestinal symptoms were assessed by a self-administered postrace questionnaire. Marathon time was 3:49:26 ± 0:25:05 and 3:38:31 ± 0:24:54 hr for runners applying the freely chosen and the scientifically based strategy, respectively (p = .010, effect size=-0.43). Certain runners experienced diverse serious gastrointestinal symptoms, but overall, symptoms were low and not different between groups (p > .05). In conclusion, nonelite runners completed a marathon on average 10:55 min, corresponding to 4.7%, faster by applying a scientifically based rather than a freely chosen nutritional strategy. Furthermore, average values of gastrointestinal symptoms were low and not different between groups.

  19. How high-performance work systems drive health care value: an examination of leading process improvement strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robbins, Julie; Garman, Andrew N; Song, Paula H; McAlearney, Ann Scheck

    2012-01-01

    As hospitals focus on increasing health care value, process improvement strategies have proliferated, seemingly faster than the evidence base supporting them. Yet, most process improvement strategies are associated with work practices for which solid evidence does exist. Evaluating improvement strategies in the context of evidence-based work practices can provide guidance about which strategies would work best for a given health care organization. We combined a literature review with analysis of key informant interview data collected from 5 case studies of high-performance work practices (HPWPs) in health care organizations. We explored the link between an evidence-based framework for HPWP use and 3 process improvement strategies: Hardwiring Excellence, Lean/Six Sigma, and Baldrige. We found that each of these process improvement strategies has not only strengths but also important gaps with respect to incorporating HPWPs involving engaging staff, aligning leaders, acquiring and developing talent, and empowering the front line. Given differences among these strategies, our analyses suggest that some may work better than others for individual health care organizations, depending on the organizations' current management systems. In practice, most organizations implementing improvement strategies would benefit from including evidence-based HPWPs to maximize the potential for process improvement strategies to increase value in health care.

  20. Strategies for improving approximate Bayesian computation tests for synchronous diversification.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Overcast, Isaac; Bagley, Justin C; Hickerson, Michael J

    2017-08-24

    Estimating the variability in isolation times across co-distributed taxon pairs that may have experienced the same allopatric isolating mechanism is a core goal of comparative phylogeography. The use of hierarchical Approximate Bayesian Computation (ABC) and coalescent models to infer temporal dynamics of lineage co-diversification has been a contentious topic in recent years. Key issues that remain unresolved include the choice of an appropriate prior on the number of co-divergence events (Ψ), as well as the optimal strategies for data summarization. Through simulation-based cross validation we explore the impact of the strategy for sorting summary statistics and the choice of prior on Ψ on the estimation of co-divergence variability. We also introduce a new setting (β) that can potentially improve estimation of Ψ by enforcing a minimal temporal difference between pulses of co-divergence. We apply this new method to three empirical datasets: one dataset each of co-distributed taxon pairs of Panamanian frogs and freshwater fishes, and a large set of Neotropical butterfly sister-taxon pairs. We demonstrate that the choice of prior on Ψ has little impact on inference, but that sorting summary statistics yields substantially more reliable estimates of co-divergence variability despite violations of assumptions about exchangeability. We find the implementation of β improves estimation of Ψ, with improvement being most dramatic given larger numbers of taxon pairs. We find equivocal support for synchronous co-divergence for both of the Panamanian groups, but we find considerable support for asynchronous divergence among the Neotropical butterflies. Our simulation experiments demonstrate that using sorted summary statistics results in improved estimates of the variability in divergence times, whereas the choice of hyperprior on Ψ has negligible effect. Additionally, we demonstrate that estimating the number of pulses of co-divergence across co-distributed taxon

  1. Improving evaluation at two medical schools.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schiekirka-Schwake, Sarah; Dreiling, Katharina; Pyka, Katharina; Anders, Sven; von Steinbüchel, Nicole; Raupach, Tobias

    2017-08-03

    Student evaluations of teaching can provide useful feedback for teachers and programme coordinators alike. We have designed a novel evaluation tool assessing teacher performance and student learning outcome. This tool was implemented at two German medical schools. In this article, we report student and teacher perceptions of the novel tool, and the implementation process. Focus group discussions as well as one-to-one interviews involving 22 teachers and 31 undergraduate medical students were conducted. Following adjustments to the feedback reports (e.g. the colour coding of results) at one medical school, 42 teachers were asked about their perceptions of the revised report and the personal benefit of the evaluation tool. Teachers appreciated the individual feedback provided by the evaluation tool and stated that they wanted to improve their teaching, based on the results; however, they missed most of the preparative communication. Students were unsure about the additional benefit of the instrument compared with traditional evaluation tools. A majority was unwilling to complete evaluation forms in their spare time, and some felt that the new questionnaire was too long and that the evaluations occurred too often. They were particularly interested in feedback on how their comments have helped to further improve teaching. Student evaluations of teaching can provide useful feedback CONCLUSION: Despite evidence of the utility of the tool for individual teachers, implementation of changes to the process of evaluation appears to have been suboptimal, mainly owing to a perceived lack of communication. In order to motivate students to provide evaluation data, feedback loops including aims and consequences should be established. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd and The Association for the Study of Medical Education.

  2. Soil Quality Indexing Strategies for Evaluating Sugarcane Expansion in Brazil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cherubin, Maurício R.; Karlen, Douglas L.; Cerri, Carlos E. P.; Franco, André L. C.; Tormena, Cássio A.; Davies, Christian A.; Cerri, Carlos C.

    2016-01-01

    Increasing demand for biofuel has intensified land-use change (LUC) for sugarcane (Saccharum officinarum) expansion in Brazil. Assessments of soil quality (SQ) response to this LUC are essential for quantifying and monitoring sustainability of sugarcane production over time. Since there is not a universal methodology for assessing SQ, we conducted a field-study at three sites within the largest sugarcane-producing region of Brazil to develop a SQ index (SQI). The most common LUC scenario (i.e., native vegetation to pasture to sugarcane) was evaluated using six SQI strategies with varying complexities. Thirty eight soil indicators were included in the total dataset. Two minimum datasets were selected: one using principal component analysis (7 indicators) and the other based on expert opinion (5 indicators). Non-linear scoring curves were used to interpret the indicator values. Weighted and non-weighted additive methods were used to combine individual indicator scores into an overall SQI. Long-term conversion from native vegetation to extensive pasture significantly decreased overall SQ. In contrast, conversion from pasture to sugarcane had no significant impact on overall SQ at the regional scale, but site-specific responses were found. In general, sugarcane production improved chemical attributes (i.e., higher macronutrient levels and lower soil acidity); however it has negative effects on physical and biological attributes (i.e., higher soil compaction and structural degradation as well as lower soil organic carbon (SOC), abundance and diversity of macrofauna and microbial activity). Overall, we found that simple, user-friendly strategies were as effective as more complex ones for identifying SQ changes. Therefore, as a protocol for SQ assessments in Brazilian sugarcane areas, we recommend using a small number of indicators (e.g., pH, P, K, Visual Evaluation of Soil Structure -VESS scores and SOC concentration) and proportional weighting to reflect chemical

  3. Soil Quality Indexing Strategies for Evaluating Sugarcane Expansion in Brazil.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maurício R Cherubin

    Full Text Available Increasing demand for biofuel has intensified land-use change (LUC for sugarcane (Saccharum officinarum expansion in Brazil. Assessments of soil quality (SQ response to this LUC are essential for quantifying and monitoring sustainability of sugarcane production over time. Since there is not a universal methodology for assessing SQ, we conducted a field-study at three sites within the largest sugarcane-producing region of Brazil to develop a SQ index (SQI. The most common LUC scenario (i.e., native vegetation to pasture to sugarcane was evaluated using six SQI strategies with varying complexities. Thirty eight soil indicators were included in the total dataset. Two minimum datasets were selected: one using principal component analysis (7 indicators and the other based on expert opinion (5 indicators. Non-linear scoring curves were used to interpret the indicator values. Weighted and non-weighted additive methods were used to combine individual indicator scores into an overall SQI. Long-term conversion from native vegetation to extensive pasture significantly decreased overall SQ. In contrast, conversion from pasture to sugarcane had no significant impact on overall SQ at the regional scale, but site-specific responses were found. In general, sugarcane production improved chemical attributes (i.e., higher macronutrient levels and lower soil acidity; however it has negative effects on physical and biological attributes (i.e., higher soil compaction and structural degradation as well as lower soil organic carbon (SOC, abundance and diversity of macrofauna and microbial activity. Overall, we found that simple, user-friendly strategies were as effective as more complex ones for identifying SQ changes. Therefore, as a protocol for SQ assessments in Brazilian sugarcane areas, we recommend using a small number of indicators (e.g., pH, P, K, Visual Evaluation of Soil Structure -VESS scores and SOC concentration and proportional weighting to reflect

  4. Improving Stewardship of Marine Resources: Linking Strategy to Opportunity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Franciska von Heland

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available The need for improved stewardship of coastal and marine resources is evident worldwide. However, complex ecosystem dynamics, institutional inertia, and budgetary constraints impede such action. This study explores how networks of change-oriented individuals or “institutional entrepreneurs” can introduce new types of human-environment interaction. The focus is on investigating the interplay between the strategies of institutional entrepreneurs and broader system dynamics that shape the context in which they are working, and possible impacts of institutional entrepreneurship on marine governance. We explore these issues in the context of Wakatobi National Park in eastern Indonesia. We suggest that creating links between different social spheres, such as between marine resource management and spirituality or between marine resource management and education, may accelerate the development of a new ecosystem stewardship. We further suggest that the use of media has significant power to show alternative futures, but that media may also serve to objectify certain resource users and increase the complexity of marine resource management. In general, institutional entrepreneurs play an important role in capturing and managing opportunity to open up space for experimentation and novel ideas, for example by linking their ideas to broader political priorities. Yet, such strategies bear the risk of institutional capture. Finally, institutional entrepreneurs sometimes have vested interests in certain solutions that may forsake experimentation toward a sustainable future.

  5. Idebenone: Novel Strategies to Improve Its Systemic and Local Efficacy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lucia Montenegro

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available The key role of antioxidants in treating and preventing many systemic and topical diseases is well recognized. One of the most potent antioxidants available for pharmaceutical and cosmetic use is Idebenone (IDE, a synthetic analogue of Coenzyme Q10. Unfortunately, IDE’s unfavorable physicochemical properties such as poor water solubility and high lipophilicity impair its bioavailability after oral and topical administration and prevent its parenteral use. In recent decades, many strategies have been proposed to improve IDE effectiveness in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases and skin disorders. After a brief description of IDE potential therapeutic applications and its pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic profile, this review will focus on the different approaches investigated to overcome IDE drawbacks, such as IDE incorporation into different types of delivery systems (liposomes, cyclodextrins, microemulsions, self-micro-emulsifying drug delivery systems, lipid-based nanoparticles, polymeric nanoparticles and IDE chemical modification. The results of these studies will be illustrated with emphasis on the most innovative strategies and their future perspectives.

  6. Strategies to Improve Cancer Photothermal Therapy Mediated by Nanomaterials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Melo-Diogo, Duarte; Pais-Silva, Cleide; Dias, Diana R; Moreira, André F; Correia, Ilídio J

    2017-05-01

    The deployment of hyperthermia-based treatments for cancer therapy has captured the attention of different researchers worldwide. In particular, the application of light-responsive nanomaterials to mediate hyperthermia has revealed promising results in several pre-clinical assays. Unlike conventional therapies, these nanostructures can display a preferential tumor accumulation and thus mediate, upon irradiation with near-infrared light, a selective hyperthermic effect with temporal resolution. Different types of nanomaterials such as those based on gold, carbon, copper, molybdenum, tungsten, iron, palladium and conjugated polymers have been used for this photothermal modality. This progress report summarizes the different strategies that have been applied so far for increasing the efficacy of the photothermal therapeutic effect mediated by nanomaterials, namely those that improve the accumulation of nanomaterials in tumors (e.g. by changing the corona composition or through the functionalization with targeting ligands), increase nanomaterials' intrinsic capacity to generate photoinduced heat (e.g. by synthesizing new nanomaterials or assembling nanostructures) or by optimizing the parameters related to the laser light used in the irradiation process (e.g. by modulating the radiation wavelength). Overall, the development of new strategies or the optimization and combination of the existing ones will surely give a major contribution for the application of nanomaterials in cancer PTT. © 2017 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  7. Allelopathy as a potential strategy to improve microalgae cultivation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bacellar Mendes, Leonardo Brantes; Vermelho, Alane Beatriz

    2013-10-21

    One of the main obstacles for continuous productivity in microalgae cultivation is the presence of biological contaminants capable of eliminating large numbers of cells in a matter of days or even hours. However, a number of strategies are being used to combat and prevent contamination in microalgae cultivation. These strategies include the use of extreme conditions in the culture media such as high salinity and high pH to create an unfavorable environment for the competitive organisms or predators of the microalgae. Numerous studies have explored the potential of naturally occurring bioactive secondary metabolites, which are natural products from plants and microorganisms, as a source of such compounds. Some of these compounds are herbicides, and marine and freshwater microalgae are a source of these compounds. Microalgae produce a remarkable diversity of biologically active metabolites. Results based on the allelopathic potential of algae have only been described for laboratory-scale production and not for algae cultivation on a pilot scale. The adoption of allelopathy on microalgal strains is an unexplored field and may be a novel solution to improve algae production. Here we present information showing the diversity of allelochemicals from microalgae and the use of an allelopathic approach to control microalgae cultivation on a pilot scale based on R&D activities being carried out in Brazil for biodiesel production.

  8. Allelopathy as a potential strategy to improve microalgae cultivation

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    One of the main obstacles for continuous productivity in microalgae cultivation is the presence of biological contaminants capable of eliminating large numbers of cells in a matter of days or even hours. However, a number of strategies are being used to combat and prevent contamination in microalgae cultivation. These strategies include the use of extreme conditions in the culture media such as high salinity and high pH to create an unfavorable environment for the competitive organisms or predators of the microalgae. Numerous studies have explored the potential of naturally occurring bioactive secondary metabolites, which are natural products from plants and microorganisms, as a source of such compounds. Some of these compounds are herbicides, and marine and freshwater microalgae are a source of these compounds. Microalgae produce a remarkable diversity of biologically active metabolites. Results based on the allelopathic potential of algae have only been described for laboratory-scale production and not for algae cultivation on a pilot scale. The adoption of allelopathy on microalgal strains is an unexplored field and may be a novel solution to improve algae production. Here we present information showing the diversity of allelochemicals from microalgae and the use of an allelopathic approach to control microalgae cultivation on a pilot scale based on R&D activities being carried out in Brazil for biodiesel production. PMID:24499580

  9. The Tumor Microenvironment and Strategies to Improve Drug Distribution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jasdeep K Saggar

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available The microenvironment within tumors is composed of a heterogeneous mixture of cells with varying levels of nutrients and oxygen. Differences in oxygen content result in survival or compensatory mechanisms within tumors that may favor a more malignant or lethal phenotype. Cells that are rapidly proliferating are richly nourished and preferentially located close to blood vessels. Chemotherapy can target and kill cells that are adjacent to the vasculature, while cells that reside farther away are often not exposed to adequate amounts of drug and may survive and repopulate following treatment. The characteristics of the tumor microenvironment can be manipulated in order to design more effective therapies. In this review, we describe important features of the tumor microenvironment and discuss strategies whereby drug distribution and activity may be improved.

  10. Improving test ordering in primary care : the added value of a small-group quality improvement strategy compared with classic feedback only

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Verstappen, W.H.; Weijden, T. van der; Dubois, W.; Smeele, I.J.M.; Hermsen, J.; Tan, F.; Grol, R.P.T.M.

    2004-01-01

    PURPOSE: We wanted to evaluate the added value of small peer-group quality improvement meetings compared with simple feedback as a strategy to improve test-ordering behavior. Numbers of tests ordered by primary care physicians are increasing, and many of these tests seem to be unnecessary according

  11. Hydrogeological modeling for improving groundwater monitoring network and strategies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thakur, Jay Krishna

    2017-10-01

    The research aimed to investigate a new approach for spatiotemporal groundwater monitoring network optimization using hydrogeological modeling to improve monitoring strategies. Unmonitored concentrations were incorporated at different potential monitoring locations into the groundwater monitoring optimization method. The proposed method was applied in the contaminated megasite, Bitterfeld/Wolfen, Germany. Based on an existing 3-D geological model, 3-D groundwater flow was obtained from flow velocity simulation using initial and boundary conditions. The 3-D groundwater transport model was used to simulate transport of α-HCH with an initial ideal concentration of 100 mg/L injected at various hydrogeological layers in the model. Particle tracking for contaminant and groundwater flow velocity realizations were made. The spatial optimization result suggested that 30 out of 462 wells in the Quaternary aquifer (6.49 %) and 14 out of 357 wells in the Tertiary aquifer (3.92 %) were redundant. With a gradual increase in the width of the particle track path line, from 0 to 100 m, the number of redundant wells remarkably increased, in both aquifers. The results of temporal optimization showed different sampling frequencies for monitoring wells. The groundwater and contaminant flow direction resulting from particle tracks obtained from hydrogeological modeling was verified by the variogram modeling through α-HCH data from 2003 to 2009. Groundwater monitoring strategies can be substantially improved by removing the existing spatio-temporal redundancy as well as incorporating unmonitored network along with sampling at recommended interval of time. However, the use of this model-based method is only recommended in the areas along with site-specific experts' knowledge.

  12. Does supplier evaluation impact process improvement?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shiva Prasad h c

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Purpose: The research explores and examines factors for supplier evaluation and its impact on process improvement particularly aiming on a steel pipe manufacturing firm in Gujarat, India. Design/Methodology/approach: The conceptual research framework was developed and hypotheses were stated considering the analysis of literature and discussions with the managers and engineers of a steel pipe manufacturing company in Gujarat, India. Data was collected using in-depth interview. The questionnaire primarily involves the perception of evaluation of supplier. Factors influencing supplier evaluation and its influence on process improvement is also examined in this study. The model testing and validation was done using partial least square method. Outcomes signified that the factors that influence evaluation of the supplier are quality, cost, delivery and supplier relationship management. Findings: The study depicted that quality and cost factors for supplier evaluation are insignificant. The delivery and supplier relationship management have significant influence on evaluation of the supplier. The research also depicted that supplier evaluation has significant influence on process improvement. Research limitations/implications: The study has been made specifically for ABC steel pipe manufacturing industry in Gujarat, India and may not be appropriate to the other industries or any parts of the world. There is a possibility of response bias as the conclusions of this research was interpreted on survey responses taken from the employees of case study company, so it is suggested that future research can overcome this problem by employing various methodologies in addition to surveys like carrying out focus group and in-depth interviews, brainstorming sessions with the experts etc. Originality/value: Many researchers have considered quality, cost and delivery as the factors for evaluating the suppliers. But for a company it is quintessential to have good

  13. THE EVALUATION AND IMPROVEMENT OF IT GOVERNANCE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patricia Pérez Lorences

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available The present article aims to propose a general procedure to evaluate and improve the Information Technology (IT Governance in an organization, considering the Business–IT alignment and risk management. The procedure integrates management tools such as business processes management, risk management, strategic alignment and the balanced scorecard. Additionally, to assess the IT Governance level we proposed an indicator based on the process maturity. The concepts and ideas presented here had been applied in four case studies, verifying their implementation feasibility. The results indicate a low level of IT governance and the existence of several problems primarily in the Plan and Organize and Monitor and Evaluate domains.

  14. [Improvement strategy to increase vaccination rates in adolescents].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roggendorf, H; Freynik, P; Hofmann, F

    2011-08-01

    Vaccination rates in adolescents in Germany are not sufficient. An intervention programme, which has been launched by the community health centre in Essen, should significantly increase vaccination coverage. In 2001 the Children and Youth Health Service at the Community Health Centre in Essen implemented a specific strategy to improve vaccination rates in adolescents. Vaccination rates were determined by control of vaccination certificates of all 6 (th) graders in Essen (n=5 589). After control of vaccination records the parents got a written, individual vaccination counselling for their child as well as a referral to the paediatrician to get the missing vaccinations. After 6 months the vaccination certificates were looked at again and vaccination coverage was determined. At the initial vaccination record control of 6 (th) graders in 2001 only 15% of the students, who presented their vaccination certificate, had an appropriate age related immunisation status. 84% of the students had had the tetanus/diphtheria and polio booster. But only 43% had been given a second measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) immunisation and only 24% had a complete hepatitis B coverage. The intervention programme (e. g., individual vaccination counselling) improved vaccination rates for hepatitis B and MMR by 16%. From 2001 to 2008 vaccination coverage in this age group could be improved from 43% to 87% for the second MMR vaccination and from 24% to 85% for hepatitis B. A remarkable improvement in vaccination coverage in children and adolescents could be achieved by a single, individual, written vaccination reminder. As a prerequisite a good cooperation between schools/paediatricians and the health authorities is needed. © Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York.

  15. Bin recycling strategy for improving the histogram precision on GPU

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cárdenas-Montes, Miguel; Rodríguez-Vázquez, Juan José; Vega-Rodríguez, Miguel A.

    2016-07-01

    Histogram is an easily comprehensible way to present data and analyses. In the current scientific context with access to large volumes of data, the processing time for building histogram has dramatically increased. For this reason, parallel construction is necessary to alleviate the impact of the processing time in the analysis activities. In this scenario, GPU computing is becoming widely used for reducing until affordable levels the processing time of histogram construction. Associated to the increment of the processing time, the implementations are stressed on the bin-count accuracy. Accuracy aspects due to the particularities of the implementations are not usually taken into consideration when building histogram with very large data sets. In this work, a bin recycling strategy to create an accuracy-aware implementation for building histogram on GPU is presented. In order to evaluate the approach, this strategy was applied to the computation of the three-point angular correlation function, which is a relevant function in Cosmology for the study of the Large Scale Structure of Universe. As a consequence of the study a high-accuracy implementation for histogram construction on GPU is proposed.

  16. A peptide-retrieval strategy enables significant improvement of quantitative performance without compromising confidence of identification.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tu, Chengjian; Shen, Shichen; Sheng, Quanhu; Shyr, Yu; Qu, Jun

    2017-01-30

    Reliable quantification of low-abundance proteins in complex proteomes is challenging largely owing to the limited number of spectra/peptides identified. In this study we developed a straightforward method to improve the quantitative accuracy and precision of proteins by strategically retrieving the less confident peptides that were previously filtered out using the standard target-decoy search strategy. The filtered-out MS/MS spectra matched to confidently-identified proteins were recovered, and the peptide-spectrum-match FDR were re-calculated and controlled at a confident level of FDR≤1%, while protein FDR maintained at ~1%. We evaluated the performance of this strategy in both spectral count- and ion current-based methods. >60% increase of total quantified spectra/peptides was respectively achieved for analyzing a spike-in sample set and a public dataset from CPTAC. Incorporating the peptide retrieval strategy significantly improved the quantitative accuracy and precision, especially for low-abundance proteins (e.g. one-hit proteins). Moreover, the capacity of confidently discovering significantly-altered proteins was also enhanced substantially, as demonstrated with two spike-in datasets. In summary, improved quantitative performance was achieved by this peptide recovery strategy without compromising confidence of protein identification, which can be readily implemented in a broad range of quantitative proteomics techniques including label-free or labeling approaches. We hypothesize that more quantifiable spectra and peptides in a protein, even including less confident peptides, could help reduce variations and improve protein quantification. Hence the peptide retrieval strategy was developed and evaluated in two spike-in sample sets with different LC-MS/MS variations using both MS1- and MS2-based quantitative approach. The list of confidently identified proteins using the standard target-decoy search strategy was fixed and more spectra/peptides with less

  17. Educational and evaluation strategies in the training of physician specialists

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaona-Flores, Verónica Alejandra; Campos-Navarro, Luz Arcelia; Arenas-Osuna, Jesús; Alcalá-Martínez, Enrique

    2017-01-01

    Teaching strategies have been defined as procedures, means or resources that teachers used to promote meaningful learning. Identify teaching strategies and evaluation used by the professor with residents in tertiary hospitals health care. This is a cross-sectional study conducted with full, associate and assistant professors of various medical specialties. A questionnaire was applied to evaluate the strategies used by professors to teach and evaluate students. We included a sample of 90 professors in 35 medical specialties. The most frequent teaching activities were: organizing students to develop presentations on specific subjects, followed by asking questions on previously reviewed subjects, In terms of the strategies employed, the most frequent "always" option was applied to case analyses. The most frequent methods used for the evaluation of theoretical knowledge were: participation in class, topic presentation and exams. Teaching activities were primarily based on the presentation of specific topics by the residents. The most commonly used educational strategies were clinical case analyses followed by problem-based learning and the use of illustrations. Evaluation of the residents' performance in theory knowledge, hinged on class participation, presentation of assigned topics and exams.

  18. Verification and Performance Evaluation of Timed Game Strategies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    David, Alexandre; Fang, Huixing; Larsen, Kim Guldstrand

    2014-01-01

    under the synthesized strategy in order to verify additional correctness properties. Secondly, we want to apply statistical model checking to evaluate various performance aspects of the synthesized strategy. For this, the underlying timed game is extended with relevant price and stochastic information......Control synthesis techniques, based on timed games, derive strategies to ensure a given control objective, e.g., time-bounded reachability. Model checking verifies correctness properties of systems. Statistical model checking can be used to analyse performance aspects of systems, e.g., energy......, then verifies and evaluates this strategy with respect to additional properties. We demonstrate the usefulness of this new branch of Uppaal using two case-studies....

  19. Strategies to improve self-management in heart failure patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toback, Mehnosh; Clark, Nancy

    2017-02-01

    Heart failure is one of the most common causes of hospitalization, hospital readmission and death. Patients with heart failure have many complications, with multiple co-existing diagnoses which result in polypharmacy. Following instructions provided by many physicians, medication adjustments based on changes in their symptoms are required. Behavioral adjustments concerning diet and exercise regime are recommended. Therefore, the patient plays a crucial role in the management of heart failure. To review the available studies on heart failure self-management, and investigate educational, behavioral and psychosocial strategies that plays an important role to improve patient self-management. A literature review was conducted based upon the preferred reporting items for systematic reviews and meta-analyses (PRISMA) guidance. The articles identified through an extensive search using PubMed and UpToDate from 1999 to 2016. Improved self-management will increase compliance, promote patient quality-of-life, advance clinical outcomes, reduce hospital re-admission and will decrease hospitalization costs.

  20. Biotechnological Strategies to Improve Plant Biomass Quality for Bioethanol Production

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julián Mario Peña-Castro

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The transition from an economy dependent on nonrenewable energy sources to one with higher diversity of renewables will not be a simple process. It requires an important research effort to adapt to the dynamics of the changing energy market, sort costly processes, and avoid overlapping with social interest markets such as food and livestock production. In this review, we analyze the desirable traits of raw plant materials for the bioethanol industry and the molecular biotechnology strategies employed to improve them, in either plants already under use (as maize or proposed species (large grass families. The fundamentals of these applications can be found in the mechanisms by which plants have evolved different pathways to manage carbon resources for reproduction or survival in unexpected conditions. Here, we review the means by which this information can be used to manipulate these mechanisms for commercial uses, including saccharification improvement of starch and cellulose, decrease in cell wall recalcitrance through lignin modification, and increase in plant biomass.

  1. Influenza vaccination of healthcare workers: institutional strategies for improving rates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simeonsson, Kristina; Summers-Bean, Chris; Connolly, Allison

    2004-01-01

    The nosocomial transmission of influenza has been well documented since the 1970s with both direct and indirect effects of outbreaks in healthcare settings. Outbreaks can directly increase morbidity among patients and residents of long-term care facilities. Indirect effects include disruption of normal operations of healthcare institutions, shortages of healthcare workers (HCWs), fewer elective admissions, and income loss due to absenteeism. Influenza vaccination of United States HCWs remains below 40% despite the availability of a safe, effective vaccine and a long-standing recommendation for vaccination of HCWs. New strategies to improve the rate of influenza vaccination among HCWs are needed as the percentage of those receiving yearly vaccination has changed little in the past 20 years. Increasing HCW influenza vaccination coverage calls for a paradigm shift, institutions should view vaccination of HCWs as a crucial part of a comprehensive infection control program designed to protect patients and staff. Administrators of hospitals, long-term care facilities, and other health agencies should respond to this challenge by developing programs to improve yearly influenza vaccination of their staff Such efforts would put these employees into compliance with national recommendations and also benefit the institution by reducing absenteeism, nosocomial influenza transmission, and the associated economic losses and disruption of routine operations.

  2. Improved Control Strategy for Microgrid Ultracapacitor Energy Storage Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaobo Dou

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Ultracapacitors (UCs, with their features of high power density and high current charge-discharge, have become the best choice for dynamic power compensation to improve the stability of microgrids and are increasingly being applied in microgrids. This paper presents the control of an energy storage system (ESS based on ultracapacitors in the context of grid-connected microgrids. The ESS is composed of DC/AC and DC/DC converters tied by a dc link. An improved dynamic model for the ESS is proposed. Based on the proposed model a Proportional-Integral-Resonant (PIR DC link voltage controller is proposed to maintain the DC link voltage through the charging-discharging control of ultracapacitors, capable of working properly under all operating conditions. An extra double frequency component is injected into the UC current by a R controller to dynamically compensate for DC instantaneous power and double frequency AC instantaneous power due to unbalanced grid conditions and disturbances. This feature maintains the DC link voltage constant under unbalanced conditions and increases the degrees of freedom of the DC/AC converter and thus facilitates the application of UCs in microgrids. Simulation and experimental results verify the effectiveness of the proposed control strategy.

  3. Mental health strategy and impact evaluation in Qatar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharkey, Terence

    2017-02-01

    In Qatar between 2008 and 2011, strategic developments at governmental level were beginning to reflect a more positive understanding of mental health. Under the leadership of the Ministry of Public Health, key stakeholders agreed to develop a strategy to reform the mental health system, while tackling stigma. This article discusses the development of the National Mental Health Strategy for Qatar, Changing Minds, Changing Lives, 2013-18, its implementation, and the findings from an independent impact evaluation carried out in 2015.

  4. Effectiveness of Quality Improvement Strategies for the Management of CKD: A Meta-Analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silver, Samuel A; Bell, Chaim M; Chertow, Glenn M; Shah, Prakesh S; Shojania, Kaveh; Wald, Ron; Harel, Ziv

    2017-10-06

    Quality improvement interventions have enhanced care for other chronic illnesses, but their effectiveness for patients with CKD is unknown. We sought to determine the effects of quality improvement strategies on clinical outcomes in adult patients with nondialysis-requiring CKD. We conducted a systematic review of randomized trials, searching Medline and the Cochrane Effective Practice and Organization of Care database from January of 2003 to April of 2015. Eligible studies evaluated one or more of 11 prespecified quality improvement strategies, and prespecified study outcomes included at least one process of care measure, surrogate outcome, or hard clinical outcome. We used a random effects model to estimate the pooled risk ratio (RR; dichotomous data) or the mean difference (continuous data). We reviewed 15 patient-level randomized trials (n=3298 patients), and six cluster-randomized trials (n=30,042 patients). Quality improvement strategies reduced dialysis incidence (seven trials; RR, 0.85; 95% confidence interval [95% CI], 0.74 to 0.97) and LDL cholesterol concentrations (four trials; mean difference, -17.6 mg/dl; 95% CI, -28.7 to -6.5), and increased the likelihood that patients received renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system inhibitors (nine trials; RR, 1.16; 95% CI, 1.06 to 1.27). We did not observe statistically significant effects on mortality, cardiovascular events, eGFR, glycated hemoglobin, and systolic or diastolic BP. Quality improvement interventions yielded significant beneficial effects on three elements of CKD care. Estimates of the effectiveness of quality improvement strategies were limited by study number and adherence to quality improvement principles. This article contains a podcast at https://www.asn-online.org/media/podcast/CJASN/2017_09_06_CJASNPodcast_17_10.mp3. Copyright © 2017 by the American Society of Nephrology.

  5. Evaluation strategies as a means for learning physics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warren, Aaron Richard

    Students often make mistakes in physics courses and are expected to identify, correct, and learn from their mistakes, usually with some assistance from an instructor, textbook, or peer. This aid may come in many forms, such as problem solutions which are given to a class, tutoring to an individual student, or a peer-discussion among several students. However, in each case a student relies upon an external agent in order to determine whether, and how, her work is mistaken. Consequently, the student's learning process is largely contingent upon the availability and quality of external evaluating agents. One may suspect that if a student developed the ability to evaluate her own work, her dependence on external agents could be moderated, resulting in an enhancement of her learning. In this dissertation, I first discuss what evaluation strategies are and why they may benefit student learning. Next, I elaborate on some specific means for teaching students the evaluation strategies of unit analysis and special-case analysis. Afterwards, I present and analyze the results of a quasi-experimental control group study that indicates we were successful at helping students learn and use evaluation strategies, and that this caused significant gains in student problem-solving performance. The relationship between student motivation, self-efficacy, and use of evaluation strategies is also discussed.

  6. Violence Prevention in Austrian Schools: Implementation and Evaluation of a National Strategy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christiane Spiel

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available A qualitative study of Austria’s national strategy against violence in the public school system introduced in 2008. The national strategy developed by researchers consists of six activity domains with specific goals and projects defined for each. The evaluation (1 analyzes how the realized projects contributed to the six activity domains, (2 evaluates the national strategy at a general level, and (3 provides future recommendations. Eight members of the steering committee were interviewed at two points in the implementation process. The systematic interviews were coded according to the goals of the activity domains. According to the interviewees most of the projects have been satisfactorily implemented. Networking and cooperation with the different actors in the field of violence prevention and cooperation among steering committee members have been improved. However, the national strategy has not achieved the intended public recognition. The lessons learned from the evaluation and its results are discussed.

  7. Improving text comprehension strategies in upper primary school children: a design experiment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Corte, E; Verschaffel, L; Van De Ven, A

    2001-12-01

    With respect to the acquisition of competence in reading, new standards for primary education stress more than before the importance of learning and teaching cognitive and metacognitive strategies that facilitate text comprehension. Therefore, there is a need to design a research-based instructional approach to strategic reading comprehension. The design experiment aimed at developing, implementing and evaluating a research-based, but also practically applicable learning environment for enhancing skilled strategy use in upper primary school children when reading a text. Four text comprehension strategies (activating prior knowledge, clarifying difficult words, making a schematic representation of the text, and formulating the main idea) and a metacognitive strategy (regulating one's own reading process) were trained through a variety of highly interactive instructional techniques, namely modelling, whole class discussion, and small group work in the format of reciprocal teaching. Participants in the study were four experimental 5th grade classes (79 children) and eight comparable control classes (149 pupils). The effects of the learning environment were measured using a pretest-post-test-retention design. Multilevel hierarchical linear regression models were used to analyse the quantitative data of a Reading Strategy Test, a standardised Reading Comprehension Test, a Reading Attitude Scale, a Transfer Test and an interview about strategy use during reading. The data of the Reading Strategy Test, the Transfer Test and the interviews about strategy use showed that the experimental group out-performed the control group in terms of the strategy adoption and application during text reading. Whilst the experimental group also scored higher on the Reading Comprehension Test than the control group, the difference was not significant. This design experiment shows that it is possible to foster pupils' use and transfer of strategic reading comprehension skills in regular

  8. Improving the Process of Student Evaluation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gabriela Neacşu

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available In this paper we analyzed the process of student evaluation from “Spiru Haret” University. The process under consideration occurs according to a specific Procedure – Process of student evaluation from the Manual of Quality Assurance Procedures, “Spiru Haret” University, Edition 1, 2012. The goal of this procedure, mentioned in the Manual, is to present the student evaluation procedure by using the Blackboard educational platform and other evaluation techniques of quality learning, based on materials developed by teachers of “Spiru Haret” University, as well as corresponding responsibilities, in order to increase the learning process quality and the exigency degree in the examination process, as well as students’ satisfaction measured by accumulated competences. We appreciate that the purpose of this procedure is first and foremost to ensure transparency and objectivity in exam passing decision. After identifying the weaknesses with the “cause - effect” chart, we have sought to improve student evaluation process using PDCA (Plan-Do-Check-Act method, resulting in the design of a new assessment flowchart.

  9. Strategies to improve fertilisation rates with assisted conception: a systematic review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeve, Yadava Bapurao; Potdar, Neelam; Blower, Jane A; Gelbaya, Tarek

    2017-05-26

    Successful fertilisation is one of the key steps determining success of assisted conception. Various factors including sperm or oocyte pathology and environmental factors have a significant impact on fertilisation rates. This systematic review is aimed to evaluate the existing evidence about factors affecting fertilisation and strategies to improve fertilisation rates. A literature search was performed using Ovid MEDLINE ® (Jan 1950-April 2016), EMBASE (Jan 1950-April 2016), Ovid OLDMEDLINE ®, Pre-MEDLINE (Jan 1950-April 2016) and the Cochrane Library. Relevant key words were used to combine sets of results and a total 243 papers were screened. Only qualitative analysis was performed, as there was major heterogeneity in study design and methodology for quantitative synthesis. Factors affecting fertilisation were divided into sperm- and oocyte-related factors. The methods to improve fertilisation rates were grouped together based on the approach used to improve fertilisation rates. Optimising laboratory condition and procedural effects in techniques is associated with improved fertilisation rates. Various techniques are described to improve fertilisation rates including assisted oocyte activation, physiological intracytoplasmic sperm injection (PICSI) and intracytoplasmic morphologically selected sperm injection (IMSI). This review highlights the promising strategies under research to enhance fertilisation rates. Adequately powered multicentre randomised trials are required to evaluate these techniques before considering clinical application.

  10. Improving flood risk management through risk communication strategies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bodoque, Jose Maria; Diez Herrero, Andres; Amerigo, Maria; Garcia, Juan Antonio; Olcina, Jorge; Cortes, Beatriz

    2016-04-01

    risk and a low level of awareness regarding the Civil Protection Plan. In the social context of the Iberian Peninsula, where climate change models indicate an increase in extreme weather events and, consequently, high exposure and vulnerability to flash floods, the implementation of appropriately designed communication strategies is critical to improve the resilience of urban areas in order to cope with this risk.

  11. Strategies and tools to improve crop productivity by targeting photosynthesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nuccio, Michael L; Potter, Laura; Stiegelmeyer, Suzy M; Curley, Joseph; Cohn, Jonathan; Wittich, Peter E; Tan, Xiaoping; Davis, Jimena; Ni, Junjian; Trullinger, Jon; Hall, Rick; Bate, Nicholas J

    2017-09-26

    Crop productivity needs to substantially increase to meet global food and feed demand for a rapidly growing world population. Agricultural technology developers are pursuing a variety of approaches based on both traditional technologies such as genetic improvement, pest control and mechanization as well as new technologies such as genomics, gene manipulation and environmental modelling to develop crops that are capable of meeting growing demand. Photosynthesis is a key biochemical process that, many suggest, is not yet optimized for industrial agriculture or the modern global environment. We are interested in identifying control points in maize photoassimilation that are amenable to gene manipulation to improve overall productivity. Our approach encompasses: developing and using novel gene discovery techniques, translating our discoveries into traits and evaluating each trait in a stepwise manner that reflects a modern production environment. Our aim is to provide step change advancement in overall crop productivity and deliver this new technology into the hands of growers.This article is part of the themed issue 'Enhancing photosynthesis in crop plants: targets for improvement'. © 2017 The Author(s).

  12. Heliox in children with croup: a strategy to hasten improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kline-Krammes, Sarah; Reed, Christina; Giuliano, John S; Schwartz, Hamilton P; Forbes, Michael; Pope, John; Besunder, James; Gothard, Michael D; Russell, Kerry; Bigham, Michael T

    2012-01-01

    Upper airway obstruction is responsive to the reduction in airflow turbulence provided by helium/oxygen (heliox) admixture. Our pediatric critical care transport team (PCCTT) has used heliox for children with upper airway obstruction from croup. We sought to describe our experience with heliox on transport and hypothesized that heliox-treated children with croup would show a more rapid clinical improvement. Children with croup transported by our PCCTT and admitted to the PICU were evaluated. We analyzed pretransport care, transport interventions, and outcomes. Croup scores (Modified Taussig) were assigned retrospectively according to respiratory therapy charting. Data were analyzed using appropriate statistical tests, including Pearson's chi-square test, Fisher's exact test, Mann-Whitney U rank comparison, and two-sample t-test. Thirty-five children met inclusion criteria. Demographics were similar between groups. The pretransport medical care was similar between groups. Children receiving heliox had a higher baseline croup score [mean (SD) = 5.7(2.3) vs no heliox 2.9 (2.0), P < 0.001]. The improvement in croup scores over the first 60 minutes of transport was more rapid in the heliox-treated children (P < 0.001). There was no difference in the number of children requiring additional nebulized racemic epinephrine during transport. The PICU length of stay (P = 0.59) and hospital length of stay (P = 0.64) were similar between groups. Heliox added to standard transport treatment for critically ill children with croup provides a more rapid improvement in croup scores. Heliox for croup during transport does not prolong intensive care unit stay. A prospective clinical trial is warranted to evaluate heliox in pediatric transport. Copyright © 2012 Air Medical Journal Associates. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Use of GRA to evaluate road traffic safety strategies

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lu, M.; Wevers, K.; Heijden, R.E.C.M. van der; Lin, C.T.

    2005-01-01

    Large-scale implementation of advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) applications and extensive redesign of the physical road infrastructure are two of the main approaches to improve road traffic safety. These strategies may be to a large extent substitutes, but also partly complementary. The

  14. Latent human error analysis and efficient improvement strategies by fuzzy TOPSIS in aviation maintenance tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chiu, Ming-Chuan; Hsieh, Min-Chih

    2016-05-01

    The purposes of this study were to develop a latent human error analysis process, to explore the factors of latent human error in aviation maintenance tasks, and to provide an efficient improvement strategy for addressing those errors. First, we used HFACS and RCA to define the error factors related to aviation maintenance tasks. Fuzzy TOPSIS with four criteria was applied to evaluate the error factors. Results show that 1) adverse physiological states, 2) physical/mental limitations, and 3) coordination, communication, and planning are the factors related to airline maintenance tasks that could be addressed easily and efficiently. This research establishes a new analytic process for investigating latent human error and provides a strategy for analyzing human error using fuzzy TOPSIS. Our analysis process complements shortages in existing methodologies by incorporating improvement efficiency, and it enhances the depth and broadness of human error analysis methodology. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd and The Ergonomics Society. All rights reserved.

  15. Nature-Based Strategies for Improving Urban Health and Safety.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kondo, Michelle C; South, Eugenia C; Branas, Charles C

    2015-10-01

    Place-based programs are being noticed as key opportunities to prevent disease and promote public health and safety for populations at-large. As one key type of place-based intervention, nature-based and green space strategies can play an especially large role in improving health and safety for dwellers in urban environments such as US legacy cities that lack nature and greenery. In this paper, we describe the current understanding of place-based influences on public health and safety. We focus on nonchemical environmental factors, many of which are related to urban abandonment and blight. We then review findings from studies of nature-based interventions regarding impacts on health, perceptions of safety, and crime. Based on our findings, we suggest that further research in this area will require (1) refined measures of green space, nature, and health and safety for cities, (2) interdisciplinary science and cross-sector policy collaboration, (3) observational studies as well as randomized controlled experiments and natural experiments using appropriate spatial counterfactuals and mixed methods, and (4) return-on-investment calculations of potential economic, social, and health costs and benefits of urban greening initiatives.

  16. Large N: a strategy for improving regional sport performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cornett, Andrew C; Stager, Joel M

    2015-07-01

    It has been hypothesized that large differences in maximal performance can arise between various geopolitical regions solely on the basis of differing numbers of participants in the target activity. While there is evidence in support of this hypothesis for a measure of intellectual performance, the same relationship has not been examined for a measure of physical performance. To determine whether the number of participants is a predictor of the best athletic performance in a region. The 2005-2010 USA Swimming Age Group Detail reports were used to determine the number of competitive swimmers participating in each age group for the 59 local swimming communities in the United States. The USA Swimming performance database provided 50-yd-freestyle times in each community for boys and girls for each age (6-19 y). Simple linear regression was used to examine the relationship between the outcome variable (fastest time) and the predictor variable (log of the number of swimmers) for each combination of age, sex, and calendar year. The log of the number of swimmers in a region was a significant predictor of the best performance in that region for all 168 combinations of age, sex, and calendar year (Psport strategic policy. Increasing the number of participants in the target activity appears a viable strategy for improving regional performance.

  17. Reinforcement learning improves behaviour from evaluative feedback

    Science.gov (United States)

    Littman, Michael L.

    2015-05-01

    Reinforcement learning is a branch of machine learning concerned with using experience gained through interacting with the world and evaluative feedback to improve a system's ability to make behavioural decisions. It has been called the artificial intelligence problem in a microcosm because learning algorithms must act autonomously to perform well and achieve their goals. Partly driven by the increasing availability of rich data, recent years have seen exciting advances in the theory and practice of reinforcement learning, including developments in fundamental technical areas such as generalization, planning, exploration and empirical methodology, leading to increasing applicability to real-life problems.

  18. Evaluation of a pilot police-led suicide early alert surveillance strategy in the UK.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGeechan, Grant James; Richardson, Catherine; Weir, Kevin; Wilson, Lynn; O'Neill, Gillian; Newbury-Birch, Dorothy

    2017-07-19

    Those bereaved by suicide are at increased risk of psychological harm, which can be reduced with the provision of timely support. This paper outlines an evaluation of a pilot police-led suicide strategy, in comparison to a coroner-led suicide strategy looking at the number, and length of time it takes for deaths to be recorded for each strategy. Additionally, the police-led strategy offers timely contact from support services for bereaved individuals. We examined what impact this offer of support had on the capacity of support services. A mixed methods evaluation compared how long it took for suspected suicides to be recorded using both strategies. The number of referrals received by support services during the pilot strategy were compared with those from previous years. A feedback focus group, and interviews, were held with key stakeholders. The coroner strategy was more consistent at identifying suspected suicides; however, reports were filed quicker by the police. Bereaved individuals were willing to share contact details with police officers and consent for referral to support services which lead to increased referrals. The focus group and interviews revealed that the pilot police strategy needs better integration into routine police practice. This strategy has the potential to deliver a real benefit to those bereaved by suicide; however, there are still aspects which could be improved. © Article author(s) (or their employer(s) unless otherwise stated in the text of the article) 2017. All rights reserved. No commercial use is permitted unless otherwise expressly granted.

  19. Self-efficacy strategies to improve exercise in patients with heart failure: A systematic review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rajati, Fatemeh; Sadeghi, Masoumeh; Feizi, Awat; Sharifirad, Gholamreza; Hasandokht, Tolu; Mostafavi, Firoozeh

    2014-11-01

    Despite exercise is recommended as an adjunct to medication therapy in patients with heart failure (HF), non-adherence to exercise is a major problem. While improving self-efficacy is an effective way to increase physical activity, the evidence concerning the relationship between strategies to enhance self-efficacy and exercise among HF has not been systematically reviewed. The objective of this systematic review is to assess the effect of interventions to change the self-efficacy on exercise in patients with HF. A systematic database search was conducted for articles reporting exercise self-efficacy interventions. Databases such as PubMed, ProQuest, CINAHL, Scopus, and PsycINFO, and the Cochrane Library were searched with restrictions to the years 2000-June 2014. A search of relevant databases identified 10 studies. Published randomized controlled intervention studies focusing strategies to change self-efficacy to exercise adherence in HF were eligible for inclusion. In addition, studies that have applied self-efficacy-based interventions to improve exercise are discussed. Limited published data exist evaluating the self-efficacy strategies to improve exercise in HF. Dominant strategies to improve patients' self-efficacy were performance accomplishments, vicarious experience, verbal persuasion, emotional arousal. Evidence from some trials supports the view that incorporating the theory of self-efficacy into the design of an exercise intervention is beneficial. Moreover, exercise interventions aimed at integrating the four strategies of exercise self-efficacy can have positive effects on confidence and the ability to initiate exercise and recover HF symptoms. Findings of this study suggest that a positive relationship exists between self-efficacy and initiating and maintaining exercise in HF, especially in the short-term period.

  20. Assessment of Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategies in Oncology: Summary of the Oncology Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategies Workshop

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frame, James N.; Jacobson, Joseph O.; Vogel, Wendy H.; Griffith, Niesha; Wariabharaj, Darshan; Garg, Rekha; Zon, Robin; Stephens, Cyntha L.; Bialecki, Alison M.; Bruinooge, Suanna S.; Allen, Steven L.

    2013-01-01

    To address oncology community stakeholder concerns regarding implementation of the Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategies (REMS) program, ASCO sponsored a workshop to gather REMS experiences from representatives of professional societies, patient organizations, pharmaceutical companies, and the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Stakeholder presentations and topical panel discussions addressed REMS program development, implementation processes, and practice experiences, as well as oncology drug safety processes. A draft REMS decision tool prepared by the ASCO REMS Steering Committee was presented for group discussion with facilitated, goal-oriented feedback. The workshop identified several unintended consequences resulting from current oncology REMS: (1) the release of personal health information to drug sponsors as a condition for gaining access to a needed drug; (2) risk information that is not tailored—and therefore not accessible—to all literacy levels; (3) exclusive focus on drug risk, thereby affecting patient-provider treatment discussion; (4) REMS elements that do not consider existing, widely practiced oncology safety standards, professional training, and experience; and (5) administrative burdens that divert the health care team from direct patient care activities and, in some cases, could limit patient access to important therapies. Increased provider and professional society participation should form the basis of ongoing and future REMS standardization discussions with the FDA to work toward overall improvement of risk communication. PMID:23814522

  1. Evaluation of sampling strategies to estimate crown biomass

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krishna P Poudel; Hailemariam Temesgen; Andrew N Gray

    2015-01-01

    Depending on tree and site characteristics crown biomass accounts for a significant portion of the total aboveground biomass in the tree. Crown biomass estimation is useful for different purposes including evaluating the economic feasibility of crown utilization for energy production or forest products, fuel load assessments and fire management strategies, and wildfire...

  2. Multifaceted guideline implementation strategies improve early identification and management of osteoporosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kimber, Cheryl M; Grimmer-Somers, Karen A

    2009-08-01

    Osteoporosis contributes significantly to fractures, subsequent disability and premature mortality in Australia. Better detection and management of osteoporosis will reduce unnecessary health expenditure. To evaluate, in one large tertiary metropolitan hospital, the orthopaedic health care team's approach to osteoporosis guideline implementation to improve early identification and management of osteoporosis. This paper describes the implementation of multifaceted strategies to improve health-promoting behaviours and the uptake of osteoporosis guidelines by staff in the orthopaedic outpatient clinic at one metropolitan hospital, reflecting organisational and individual commitment to embedding guideline recommendations into routine practice. Implementation strategies were aimed at the requirements and perspectives of different stakeholder groups. Five audit datasets were compared: 62 patient records in two baseline audits, and three post-implementation audits of 31 patient records, collected over the following 3-month periods (August 2006 to April 2007). All audits used the same criteria to assess compliance with clinical guidelines, and outcomes of implementation strategies. There was consistent improvement in compliance with osteoporosis guidelines over the audit periods. Comparing baseline and immediate post-implementation data, there was a significant improvement (P < 0.05) in the percentage of patients with likely fragility fractures who were identified with an osteoporotic fracture. The percentage of patients who had a likely fragility fracture, with whom staff communicated about their problems and how to deal with them, increased consistently over all post-implementation audit periods. For patients with established osteoporosis who presented with fragility fractures, there was sustained improvement over the audit periods in the percentage provided with guideline-based care. This study highlights that appropriate and targeted intervention strategies can be

  3. Microfiltration of vinasse: sustainable strategy to improve its nutritive potential.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amaral, Míriam C S; Andrade, Laura H; Neta, Luzia S F; Magalhães, Natalie C; Santos, Fábio S; Mota, Gabriel E; Carvalho, Roberto B

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of this article was to evaluate and establish microfiltration (MF) operating conditions for vinasse (ethanol industries wastewater also known as stillage, slop, distillery effluent or dunder) concentration aiming to improve the use of its nutritive potential. The operating conditions influence permeate flux that has been evaluated by monitoring the flow rate profile during the operation on bench scale in different conditions (feed pH, aeration condition and recovery rate). From the results found, the process scale up was then effected. The bench scale findings showed that the vinasse microfiltration under air flow of 0.5 m(3).h(-1) between membrane fibers, with no pH adjustment, and recovery rate of 93% produced two flows, one of permeate that may be used to wash the sugarcane during the ethanol production processing, and the other of concentrate that contains a high organic compounds and nutrients concentration. This concentrate has additional potentiality of being used as organic compound supplement in contaminated soil bioremediation, and as a supplier of microbial biomass or substrate for biosurfactant production.

  4. A simple clinical coding strategy to improve recording of child maltreatment concerns: an audit study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGovern, Andrew Peter; Woodman, Jenny; Allister, Janice; van Vlymen, Jeremy; Liyanage, Harshana; Jones, Simon; Rafi, Imran; de Lusignan, Simon; Gilbert, Ruth

    2015-01-14

    Recording concerns about child maltreatment, including minor concerns, is recommended by the General Medical Council (GMC) and National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) but there is evidence of substantial under-recording. To determine whether a simple coding strategy improved recording of maltreatment-related concerns in electronic primary care records. Clinical audit of rates of maltreatment-related coding before January 2010-December 2011 and after January-December 2012 implementation of a simple coding strategy in 11 English family practices. The strategy included encouraging general practitioners to use, always and as a minimum, the Read code 'Child is cause for concern'. A total of 25,106 children aged 0-18 years were registered with these practices. We also undertook a qualitative service evaluation to investigate barriers to recording. Outcomes were recording of 1) any maltreatment-related codes, 2) child protection proceedings and 3) child was a cause for concern. We found increased recording of any maltreatment-related code (rate ratio 1.4; 95% CI 1.1-1.6), child protection procedures (RR 1.4; 95% CI 1.1-1.6) and cause for concern (RR 2.5; 95% CI 1.8-3.4) after implementation of the coding strategy. Clinicians cited the simplicity of the coding strategy as the most important factor assisting implementation. This simple coding strategy improved clinician's recording of maltreatment-related concerns in a small sample of practices with some 'buy-in'. Further research should investigate how recording can best support the doctor-patient relationship. HOW THIS FITS IN: Recording concerns about child maltreatment, including minor concerns, is recommended by the General Medical Council (GMC) and National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE), but there is evidence of substantial under-recording. We describe a simple clinical coding strategy that helped general practitioners to improve recording of maltreatment-related concerns

  5. Evaluation of sampling strategies to estimate crown biomass

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Krishna P Poudel

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Background Depending on tree and site characteristics crown biomass accounts for a significant portion of the total aboveground biomass in the tree. Crown biomass estimation is useful for different purposes including evaluating the economic feasibility of crown utilization for energy production or forest products, fuel load assessments and fire management strategies, and wildfire modeling. However, crown biomass is difficult to predict because of the variability within and among species and sites. Thus the allometric equations used for predicting crown biomass should be based on data collected with precise and unbiased sampling strategies. In this study, we evaluate the performance different sampling strategies to estimate crown biomass and to evaluate the effect of sample size in estimating crown biomass. Methods Using data collected from 20 destructively sampled trees, we evaluated 11 different sampling strategies using six evaluation statistics: bias, relative bias, root mean square error (RMSE, relative RMSE, amount of biomass sampled, and relative biomass sampled. We also evaluated the performance of the selected sampling strategies when different numbers of branches (3, 6, 9, and 12 are selected from each tree. Tree specific log linear model with branch diameter and branch length as covariates was used to obtain individual branch biomass. Results Compared to all other methods stratified sampling with probability proportional to size estimation technique produced better results when three or six branches per tree were sampled. However, the systematic sampling with ratio estimation technique was the best when at least nine branches per tree were sampled. Under the stratified sampling strategy, selecting unequal number of branches per stratum produced approximately similar results to simple random sampling, but it further decreased RMSE when information on branch diameter is used in the design and estimation phases. Conclusions Use of

  6. Inventory Management Strategies For Productivity Improvement In Equipment Manufacturing Firms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T.T Amachree

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available This study examined and developed Inventory Management Strategies IMS which could be creatively employed for Productivity Improvement in Equipment Firms PIEMF Equipment manufacturing projects suffer from declining productivity and inability to effectively satisfy customized order batch quantity within schedules budgeted cost and quality specifications due to lack of robust and well defined IMS as well as none code classification of vast number of inventory item. Survey and expost-facto research designs were adopted on the four identified IMS in three EMF. The method used for primary data collection and measurement on four IMS and inventory management parameters was questionnaire modelled into likert five point scale from the target respondents being experts in the subject matter. The secondary data was obtained from the computerised inventory status file of the three equipment manufacturing firms. The methods of primary data analysis and test of research used were Pearsons product moment correlation coefficient and oneway. Analysis of variance ANOVA computer software via Statistical Program for Social Science SPSS version 17 ABC analysis and classification of materials was used for code categorization of secondary data also with the aid of Microsoft excel. The results of the analyses highlighted and isolated A class of inventory items which are 137 out of 543 for Siemens Nig. Ltd 154 out of 551 for Dresser-Rand Nig. Ltd and 162 of 551 for Nigerian Engineering Works Ltd. The results of Pearson product moment correlation analysis and test of research hypotheses indicate that Materials Requirements Planning MRP followed by Supply Chain Management SCM are the most significant IMS as they correlate strongly with PIEMF. The study recommends IMS adoption by code classification of materials in which MRP or SCM could be deployed for management of A class of inventories while classical IMS could be used for management B and C classes of inventory items.

  7. Screenwriting: A Strategy for the Improvement of Writing Instructional Practices

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amado Hernán

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available This article presents a pedagogical experience that addresses the use of an instructional strategy called screenwriting aimed at improving the teaching of writing in an educational context. This pedagogical intervention took place in a private English language school, where three adult students willingly participated to create their own short scripts. The idea was to introduce and reinforce the importance of screenwriting to observe its usefulness in education. Students participated in writing workshops for a 3-month period. The workshops included the respective screenwriting theory and activities that helped them to achieve completion of their final stories. Students’ final pieces proved that the writing instructional practices were enriching and beneficial. En este artículo se presenta una experiencia pedagógica sobre el uso de una estrategia instruccional llamada "la escritura de guiones", y cuyo objetivo es mejorar la enseñanza de la escritura en un contexto educativo. Esta intervención pedagógica tuvo lugar en una institución privada, dedicada a la enseñanza de lengua inglesa, donde tres estudiantes adultos participaron en la creación de sus propios guiones cortos. La idea era introducir y reforzar la importancia de la escritura de guiones para observar su utilidad en la educación. Los estudiantes participaron durante tres meses en talleres de escritura creativa. Estos incluyeron teoría y actividades para la escritura de guiones respectivos que los ayudaron a lograr sus historias finales. Los trabajos finales de los estudiantes mostraron que las prácticas instruccionales de escritura fueron enriquecedoras y benéficas.

  8. Strategies Instruction to Improve the Preparation for English Oral Exams

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abad, José Vicente; Alzate, Paula Andrea

    2016-01-01

    This article presents the results of an inter-institutional research study that assessed the impact of strategies instruction on students' preparation for and performance in oral exams. Two teacher-researchers at different universities trained 26 students in their respective B1-English-level courses in using language learning strategies. The study…

  9. Micro-Strategies: Small Steps toward Improved Retention

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beaulieu, Elizabeth Ann; Williams, Lee Burdette

    2013-01-01

    Learning communities provide an excellent venue for the practice of micro-strategies, intentional efforts aimed at making a difference for a small number of students. Building micro-strategies into the structure of learning communities can help an institution attain a valuable uptick in retention. Equally important, a shared focus on the use of…

  10. An Instructional Strategy Planning Model to Improve Learning and Cognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tennyson, Robert D.

    1988-01-01

    Presents model of instructional strategy planning that links specific cognitive learning and thinking processes with specific computer-based instructional strategies. Topics discussed include memory systems; types of knowledge; drill and practice; tutorials; task-oriented simulations; problem-oriented simulations; and self directed experiences.…

  11. Strategies for improving patient safety culture in hospitals: a systematic review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morello, Renata Teresa; Lowthian, Judy A; Barker, Anna Lucia; McGinnes, Rosemary; Dunt, David; Brand, Caroline

    2013-01-01

    To determine the effectiveness of patient safety culture strategies to improve hospital patient safety climate. Electronic search of the Cochrane Library, OVID Medline, Embase, CINAHL, proQuest and psychinfo databases, with manual searches of quality and safety websites, bibliographies of included articles and key journals. English language studies published between January 1996 and April 2011 that measured the effectiveness of patient safety culture strategies using a quantitative measure of patient safety climate in a hospital setting. Studies included were randomised controlled trials (RCTs), non-RCTs, controlled before and after studies, interrupted time series and historically controlled studies. Data extraction and critical appraisal were conducted by two independent reviewers. Study design, intervention, level of application, setting, study participants, safety climate outcome measures and implementation lessons were extracted from each article. Over 2000 articles were screened, with 21 studies meeting the inclusion criteria, one cluster RCT, seven controlled before and after studies, and 13 historically controlled studies. There was marked methodological heterogeneity amongst studies. Impacts of 11 different strategies were reported. There was some evidence to support that leadership walk rounds (p=0.02) and multi-faceted unit-based programmes (p < 0.05) may have a positive impact on patient safety climate. Despite strong face validity for a variety of patient safety culture strategies, there is limited evidence to support definitive impacts on patient safety climate outcomes. Organisations are advised to consider robust evaluation designs when implementing these potentially resource intensive strategies.

  12. The role of a blue ocean strategy on performance evaluation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mojtaba Tabari

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available This paper develops a balanced scorecard (BSC in order to prepare a comprehensive tool for performance evaluation. In this way, an experimental test is conducted in the Resorts of Ramsar Green City located in the north of Iran, in which the factors of a blue ocean strategy influence on the dimensions of the BSC. The sample number of this study consists of 90 managers and experts of the employees who work for Resorts of Ramsar Green City. The acquired data are analyzed with using the t-test. The obtained results show that the blue ocean strategy changes in the objects and the scales of the BSC.

  13. Evaluating Patient Activation Measure (PAM) Scores and Readmission Rates Following Implementation of a Nurse-Initiated Multi-Faceted Strategy for Patients on a U.S. Navy Inpatient Oncology Unit: A Quality Improvement Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-06-30

    5b. GRANT NUMBER N/A of a Nurse-Initiated Multi-Faceted Strategy for Patients on a U.S. Navy Inpatient Oncology Unit: A Quality...13. SUPPLEMENTARY NOTES N/A 14. ABSTRACT Background: Chronically ill patients often experience multiple hospitalizations. Oncology patients...have been shown to have more readmissions to the hospital than non- oncology patients. Recent reports estimate a $17.4 billion cost burden is

  14. Management Strategies Aiming to Improve Horse Welfare Reduce Embryonic Death Rates in Mares.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malschitzky, E; Pimentel, A M; Garbade, P; Jobim, Mim; Gregory, R M; Mattos, R C

    2015-08-01

    The objective of this retrospective study was to evaluate the effect of management strategies aiming to improve animal well-being on pregnancy and embryonic death (ED) rates. Breeding records of a cohort of 1206 Thoroughbred mares brought to a stallion station facility, to be bred with the stallions housed there, were evaluated during ten breeding seasons. Mares were blocked according to management strategies in two groups: Stress and Relax. Strategies used to improve animal well-being (Relax group) were as follows: stopping the teasing routine, reducing or eliminating stall confinement, reducing the number of mares per group and maintaining herd stability during the breeding season. In barren mares, the pregnancy rate was higher in the Relax group (91.8%) when compared to the observed in Stress group (84.7%). However, no difference in pregnancy rates were observed (Stress = 85.2% vs. Relax = 86.2) in foaling mares. ED rate was higher in barren and foaling mares of the Stress group mares (25.5% and 26.8%, respectively) compared with the Relax group (16.1% and 14.7%, respectively). No significant differences were observed on foal heat pregnancy rate between groups; yet, the embryo loss on foal heat was significant reduced in Relax mares (Relax = 8.7% vs Stress = 24.5%). In conclusion, management strategies aimed to reduce social stress can reduce early pregnancy losses and the average cycles per pregnancy, improving reproductive performance in mares. © 2015 Blackwell Verlag GmbH.

  15. Cognitive Strategy Instruction that Really Improves Children's Academic Performance. Cognitive Strategy Training Series. Second Edition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pressley, Michael, Ed.; Woloshyn, Vera, Ed.

    This volume is the flagship volume in a series on cognitive strategy instruction. While strategies instruction is particularly appropriate for the learning disabled, it is also very useful for normal learners, especially inner city and minority children. The series focuses on conveying strategies instruction methods for use with these children.…

  16. A parallel guideline development and formalization strategy to improve the quality of clinical practice guidelines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goud, Rick; Hasman, Arie; Strijbis, Anne-Margreet; Peek, Niels

    2009-08-01

    Clinical practice guidelines often contain ambiguities, inconsistencies, and logical errors that hamper implementation of these guidelines in practice. As guideline formalization is useful to verify the logical structure, consistency, and completeness of guidelines, several authors have argued that the formalization of guidelines concurrent with their development may improve their quality. However, experiences with such a parallel guideline development and formalization approach have not yet been reported. The goal of this study was to develop such a strategy and evaluate its application in practice. Existing methodologies for guideline development and guideline formalization were analyzed and used as a basis to develop a strategy in which guideline formalization is performed concurrently with guideline development. The developed strategy was applied in the development of a clinical practice guideline for cardiac rehabilitation. A parallel guideline development and formalization strategy was developed that intertwines the processes of guideline development and guideline formalization. Central assets are early involvement of guideline formalization specialists and formalization tools, cooperation between guideline authors and guideline formalization specialists in the development of clinical algorithms, access to domain knowledge when formalization identifies inconsistencies or omissions, and formal verification of the guideline model prior to guideline dissemination. This strategy was applied in the development of a guideline for cardiac rehabilitation and helped to identify several vague and inconsistent recommendations and impracticabilities in the narrative guidelines that could be resolved before publication. In addition, the strategy ensured consistency between the narrative and formalized guideline. Based on our experience, formalizing a guideline concurrent with its development is feasible in practice and we recommend applying such a strategy as it can be

  17. Evaluating paratransgenesis as a potential control strategy for African trypanosomiasis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan Medlock

    Full Text Available Genetic-modification strategies are currently being developed to reduce the transmission of vector-borne diseases, including African trypanosomiasis. For tsetse, the vector of African trypanosomiasis, a paratransgenic strategy is being considered: this approach involves modification of the commensal symbiotic bacteria Sodalis to express trypanosome-resistance-conferring products. Modified Sodalis can then be driven into the tsetse population by cytoplasmic incompatibility (CI from Wolbachia bacteria. To evaluate the effectiveness of this paratransgenic strategy in controlling African trypanosomiasis, we developed a three-species mathematical model of trypanosomiasis transmission among tsetse, humans, and animal reservoir hosts. Using empirical estimates of CI parameters, we found that paratransgenic tsetse have the potential to eliminate trypanosomiasis, provided that any extra mortality caused by Wolbachia colonization is low, that the paratransgene is effective at protecting against trypanosome transmission, and that the target tsetse species comprises a large majority of the tsetse population in the release location.

  18. Environmental performance evaluation and strategy management using balanced scorecard.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hsu, Yu-Lung; Liu, Chun-Chu

    2010-11-01

    Recently, environmental protection and regulations such as WEEE, ELV, and RoHS are rapidly emerging as an important issue for business to consider. The trend of swinging from end-of-pipe control to product design, green innovation, and even the establishment of image or brand has affected corporations in almost every corner in the world, and enlarged to the all modern global production network. Corporations must take proactive environmental strategies to response the challenges. This study adopts balanced scorecard structure and aim at automobile industries to understand the relationships of internal and external, financial and non-financial, and outcome and driving factors. Further relying on these relationships to draw the "map of environment strategy" to probe and understand the feasibility of environmental performance evaluation and environmental strategy control.

  19. Improving offering strategies for wind farms enhanced with storage capability

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ding, Huajie; Hu, Zechun; Song, Yonghua

    2015-01-01

    Due to the flexible charging and discharging capability, energy storage system (ESS) is thought of as a promising complement to wind farms (WF) in participating into electricity markets. This paper proposes a reserve-based real-time operation strategy of ESS to make arbitrage and to alleviate...... the wind power deviation from day-ahead contracts. Taking into account the operation strategy as well as two-price balancing market rules, a day-ahead bidding strategy of WF-ESS system is put forward and formulated. A modified gradient descent algorithm is described to solve the formulations. In the case...... studies, the computational efficiency of the algorithm is validated firstly. Moreover, a number of scenarios with/without considering the temporal dependence of wind power forecast error are designed and employed to compare the proposed strategy with other common ones in terms of profit....

  20. New strategies to improve food marketing to children

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Dietz, William H

    2013-01-01

    Federal efforts to address the impact of food marketing on children began more than thirty years ago, when the Federal Trade Commission sought comment on strategies to reduce young children's exposure...

  1. Improving the United States National Security Strategy: An Informed Public

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Malackowski, Patrick C

    2005-01-01

    .... This paper discusses the need to have the President build an information and communications strategy that keeps the American public informed and cognizant of the threat to our national security...

  2. [Hospital falls, improvement strategy for reducing their incidence].

    Science.gov (United States)

    García-Huete, M Eloisa; Sebastián-Viana, Tomás; Lema-Lorenzo, Isabel; Granados-Martín, Mónica; Buitrago-Lobo, Nuria; Heredia-Reina, M del Pilar; Merino-Ruiz, Margarita; Ventosa-Hernández, Esther; Gutiérrez-Fernández, Carmen; Mota-Boada, M Luisa

    2016-01-01

    To evaluate the evolution of falls with the implemented measures to improve the attention of patients at risk and to reduce the number of falls. To know the characteristics of patients who have suffered fall-related injuries. All the falls registered between 2008 and 2013 have been analyzed to determine the evolution of these and to describe the implemented measures through the electronic clinical history at University Hospital of Fuenlabrada. The incidence of falls in hospitalized patients has been estimated and the evolution with the chi square test has been studied. The frequencies of the characteristics of patients who fall has been presented: age, length of stay, performed activity, patient companion, mobility level, state of consciousness. 445 registered falls happened. 2009 is the year with the highest number of falls, 86 patients fell of a total of 15,819 discharged patients (0.55%). The statistic drops until 2013, where 55 patients fell out of 15,052 discharged patients (0.37%). This difference was not statistically significant. The deployment of an assessment about fall risk at admission has helped to identify individualized risk factors. Furthermore, the awareness and alerts to the nursing staff have helped to consider fall prevention as a rutinary procedure, hence appropriate measures can be implemented on the most vulnerable patients. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier España, S.L.U. All rights reserved.

  3. Biohydrogen Production: Strategies to Improve Process Efficiency through Microbial Routes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chandrasekhar, Kuppam; Lee, Yong-Jik; Lee, Dong-Woo

    2015-01-01

    The current fossil fuel-based generation of energy has led to large-scale industrial development. However, the reliance on fossil fuels leads to the significant depletion of natural resources of buried combustible geologic deposits and to negative effects on the global climate with emissions of greenhouse gases. Accordingly, enormous efforts are directed to transition from fossil fuels to nonpolluting and renewable energy sources. One potential alternative is biohydrogen (H2), a clean energy carrier with high-energy yields; upon the combustion of H2, H2O is the only major by-product. In recent decades, the attractive and renewable characteristics of H2 led us to develop a variety of biological routes for the production of H2. Based on the mode of H2 generation, the biological routes for H2 production are categorized into four groups: photobiological fermentation, anaerobic fermentation, enzymatic and microbial electrolysis, and a combination of these processes. Thus, this review primarily focuses on the evaluation of the biological routes for the production of H2. In particular, we assess the efficiency and feasibility of these bioprocesses with respect to the factors that affect operations, and we delineate the limitations. Additionally, alternative options such as bioaugmentation, multiple process integration, and microbial electrolysis to improve process efficiency are discussed to address industrial-level applications. PMID:25874756

  4. Biohydrogen production: strategies to improve process efficiency through microbial routes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chandrasekhar, Kuppam; Lee, Yong-Jik; Lee, Dong-Woo

    2015-04-14

    The current fossil fuel-based generation of energy has led to large-scale industrial development. However, the reliance on fossil fuels leads to the significant depletion of natural resources of buried combustible geologic deposits and to negative effects on the global climate with emissions of greenhouse gases. Accordingly, enormous efforts are directed to transition from fossil fuels to nonpolluting and renewable energy sources. One potential alternative is biohydrogen (H2), a clean energy carrier with high-energy yields; upon the combustion of H2, H2O is the only major by-product. In recent decades, the attractive and renewable characteristics of H2 led us to develop a variety of biological routes for the production of H2. Based on the mode of H2 generation, the biological routes for H2 production are categorized into four groups: photobiological fermentation, anaerobic fermentation, enzymatic and microbial electrolysis, and a combination of these processes. Thus, this review primarily focuses on the evaluation of the biological routes for the production of H2. In particular, we assess the efficiency and feasibility of these bioprocesses with respect to the factors that affect operations, and we delineate the limitations. Additionally, alternative options such as bioaugmentation, multiple process integration, and microbial electrolysis to improve process efficiency are discussed to address industrial-level applications.

  5. Biohydrogen Production: Strategies to Improve Process Efficiency through Microbial Routes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kuppam Chandrasekhar

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available The current fossil fuel-based generation of energy has led to large-scale industrial development. However, the reliance on fossil fuels leads to the significant depletion of natural resources of buried combustible geologic deposits and to negative effects on the global climate with emissions of greenhouse gases. Accordingly, enormous efforts are directed to transition from fossil fuels to nonpolluting and renewable energy sources. One potential alternative is biohydrogen (H2, a clean energy carrier with high-energy yields; upon the combustion of H2, H2O is the only major by-product. In recent decades, the attractive and renewable characteristics of H2 led us to develop a variety of biological routes for the production of H2. Based on the mode of H2 generation, the biological routes for H2 production are categorized into four groups: photobiological fermentation, anaerobic fermentation, enzymatic and microbial electrolysis, and a combination of these processes. Thus, this review primarily focuses on the evaluation of the biological routes for the production of H2. In particular, we assess the efficiency and feasibility of these bioprocesses with respect to the factors that affect operations, and we delineate the limitations. Additionally, alternative options such as bioaugmentation, multiple process integration, and microbial electrolysis to improve process efficiency are discussed to address industrial-level applications.

  6. Prefiltering Strategy to Improve Performance of Semantic Web Service Discovery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Samira Ghayekhloo

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Discovery of semantic Web services is a heavyweight task when the number of Web services or the complexity of ontologies increases. In this paper, we present a new logical discovery framework based on semantic description of the capability of Web services and user goals using F-logic. Our framework tackles the scalability problem and improves discovery performance by adding two prefiltering stages to the discovery engine. The first stage is based on ontology comparison of user request and Web service categories. In the second stage, yet more Web services are eliminated based upon a decomposition and analysis of concept and instance attributes used in Web service capabilities and the requested capabilities of the client, resulting in a much smaller pool of Web services that need to be matched against the client request. Our prefiltering approach is evaluated using a new Web service repository, called WSMO-FL test collection. The recall rate of the filtering process is 100% by design, since no relevant Web services are ever eliminated by the two prefiltering stages, and experimental results show that the precision rate is more than 53%.

  7. An Implementing Strategy for Improving Wildland Fire Environmental Literacy

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCalla, M. R.; Andrus, D.; Barnett, K.

    2007-12-01

    ). The OFCM model for promoting wildland fire environmental literacy, the model's component parts, as well as an implementing strategy to execute the model will be presented. That is, the presentation will lay out the framework and methodology which the OFCM used to systematically define the wildland fire weather and climate education and outreach needs through interdepartmental collaboration within the OFCM coordinating infrastructure. A key element of the methodology is to improve the overall understanding and use of wildland fire forecast and warning climate and weather products and to exploit current and emerging technologies to improve the dissemination of customer-tailored forecast and warning information and products to stakeholders and users. Thus, the framework and methodology define the method used to determine the target public, private, and academic sector audiences. The methodology also identifies the means for determining the optimal channels, formats, and content for informing end users in time for effective action to be taken.

  8. Brief educational strategies for improving contraception use in young people.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lopez, Laureen M; Grey, Thomas W; Tolley, Elizabeth E; Chen, Mario

    2016-03-30

    Global high rates of unplanned pregnancy and abortion among young women demonstrate the need for increased access to modern contraceptive services. In sub-Saharan Africa, the birth rate for those aged 15 to 19 years is 121 per 1000. In the USA, 6% of teens aged 15 to 19 years became pregnant in 2010. Most pregnancies among young women to age 25 are unintended. The aim was to identify brief educational interventions for improving contraceptive use among young people that are feasible for implementing in a clinic or similar setting with limited resources. To 7 March 2016, we searched for studies in CENTRAL, PubMed, POPLINE, Web of Science, ClinicalTrials.gov and ICTRP. We considered randomized controlled trials (RCTs) that assigned individuals or clusters as well as non-randomized studies (NRS). We included young people to age 25.The intervention had to be sufficiently brief for a clinic, i.e. one to three sessions of 15 to 60 minutes plus potential follow-up. The strategy had to emphasize one or more effective methods of contraception. Primary outcomes were pregnancy and contraceptive use. We assessed titles and abstracts identified during the searches. One author extracted and entered the data into Review Manager; a second author verified accuracy. We examined studies for methodological quality.For dichotomous outcomes, we calculated the Mantel-Haenszel odds ratio (OR) with 95% confidence interval (CI). For continuous variables, we computed the mean difference (MD) with 95% CI. We used adjusted measures for cluster RCTs, typically ORs, that the investigators reported. For NRS, which need to control for confounding, we also used reported adjusted measures. We did not conduct meta-analysis due to varied interventions and outcome measures. We found 11 studies, published from 1983 to 2015, that included a total of 8338 participants. Ten were from the USA and one was from China. We focused here on intervention effects for our primary outcomes. Five studies showed some

  9. Methodological proposal for the definition of improvement strategies in logistics of SME

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yeimy Liseth Becerra

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available A methodological proposal for defining strategies of improvement in logistics of SMEs is presented as a means to fulfill a specific objective of the project Methodological design on storage logistics, acquisition, ownership of information systems and communication for Colombian SMEs, baker subsector, which currently runs the research group SEPRO, of Universidad Nacional of Colombia and supported by Colciencias. The project corresponds to the completion of the last stage of the base project, and aims to implement the corresponding target, raised in the research project that has been developing the research group SEPRO. To do this, it was made a review of the methodology used during the execution of the basic project, as well as the state of the art of techniques used in similar research for the evaluation and definition of breeding strategies in SMEs logistics. Revised techniques were compared and a proposed methodology was configured, which consists of the techniques that represented the greatest advantages for the research development.

  10. Control and decision strategies in wastewater treatment plants for operation improvement

    CERN Document Server

    Santín, Ignacio; Vilanova, Ramón

    2017-01-01

    This book examines the operation of biological wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs), with a focus on maintaining effluent water quality while keeping operational costs within constrained limits. It includes control operation and decision schemes and is based on the use of benchmarking scenarios that yield easily reproducible results that readers can implement for their own solutions. The final criterion is the effect of the applied control strategy on plant performance – specifically, improving effluent quality, reducing costs and avoiding violations of established effluent limits. The evaluation of the different control strategies is achieved with the help of two Benchmark Simulation Models (BSM1, BSM2). Given the complexity of the biological and biochemical processes involved and the major fluctuations in the influent flow rate, controlling WWTPs poses a serious challenge. Further, the importance of control goal formulation and control structure design in relation to WWTP process control is widely recogniz...

  11. Efficiency Evaluation of Strategies for Dynamic Management of Wireless Sensor Networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Verônica González

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents and evaluates dynamic management strategies to improve efficiency in event-triggered wireless sensor networks. We are considering mobility, where nodes move themselves to maximize the coverage, and load balancing state-of-the-art techniques, by which the number of nodes sensing the same area is reduced. To explore mobility, we present a simple method by which nodes can dynamically reorganize themselves based on the force fields approach of mobile robotics. Firstly, the strategies are evaluated separately through experiments with different network configurations and, afterwards, a joint evaluation has been conducted to observe the impact of mobility on the efficiency of load balancing techniques. We show that mobile nodes significantly contribute to keeping the coverage as nodes die in mesh and powerfully improving it in random deployments. Load balancing techniques achieve important results, increasing lifetime and the number of sensed events. However, in random deployments, these techniques lose efficiency and become unsuitable strategies. Combining these strategies with mobility, we observe that PS-based technique keeps its contribution in mesh and random deployments, as well as improving its performance for not so dense networks. Ant-based technique when combined with mobile nodes loses performance significantly in mesh and keeps its good performance in random deployed and less dense networks.

  12. Improving Strategies for Low-Income Family Children's Information Literacy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Haiyan; Washington, Rodney; Yin, Jianjun

    2014-01-01

    This article discussed the significance of improving low-income family children's information literacy, which could improve educational quality, enhance children's self-esteem, adapt children to the future competitive world market, as well as the problems in improving low-income family children's information literacy, such as no home computer and…

  13. Identifying quality improvement intervention publications - A comparison of electronic search strategies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rubenstein Lisa V

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The evidence base for quality improvement (QI interventions is expanding rapidly. The diversity of the initiatives and the inconsistency in labeling these as QI interventions makes it challenging for researchers, policymakers, and QI practitioners to access the literature systematically and to identify relevant publications. Methods We evaluated search strategies developed for MEDLINE (Ovid and PubMed based on free text words, Medical subject headings (MeSH, QI intervention components, continuous quality improvement (CQI methods, and combinations of the strategies. Three sets of pertinent QI intervention publications were used for validation. Two independent expert reviewers screened publications for relevance. We compared the yield, recall rate, and precision of the search strategies for the identification of QI publications and for a subset of empirical studies on effects of QI interventions. Results The search yields ranged from 2,221 to 216,167 publications. Mean recall rates for reference publications ranged from 5% to 53% for strategies with yields of 50,000 publications or fewer. The 'best case' strategy, a simple text word search with high face validity ('quality' AND 'improv*' AND 'intervention*' identified 44%, 24%, and 62% of influential intervention articles selected by Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ experts, a set of exemplar articles provided by members of the Standards for Quality Improvement Reporting Excellence (SQUIRE group, and a sample from the Cochrane Effective Practice and Organization of Care Group (EPOC register of studies, respectively. We applied the search strategy to a PubMed search for articles published in 10 pertinent journals in a three-year period which retrieved 183 publications. Among these, 67% were deemed relevant to QI by at least one of two independent raters. Forty percent were classified as empirical studies reporting on a QI intervention. Conclusions The presented

  14. Improving occupational physicians' adherence to a practice guideline: feasibility and impact of a tailored implementation strategy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joosen, Margot C W; van Beurden, Karlijn M; Terluin, Berend; van Weeghel, Jaap; Brouwers, Evelien P M; van der Klink, Jac J L

    2015-04-24

    Although practice guidelines are important tools to improve quality of care, implementation remains challenging. To improve adherence to an evidence-based guideline for the management of mental health problems, we developed a tailored implementation strategy targeting barriers perceived by occupational physicians (OPs). Feasibility and impact on OPs' barriers were evaluated. OPs received 8 training-sessions in small peer-learning groups, aimed at discussing the content of the guideline and their perceived barriers to adhere to guideline recommendations; finding solutions to overcome these barriers; and implementing solutions in practice. The training had a plan-do-check-act (PDCA) structure and was guided by a trainer. Protocol compliance and OPs' experiences were qualitatively and quantitatively assessed. Using a questionnaire, impact on knowledge, attitude, and external barriers to guideline adherence was investigated before and after the training. The training protocol was successfully conducted; guideline recommendations and related barriers were discussed with peers, (innovative) solutions were found and implemented in practice. The participating 32 OPs were divided into 6 groups and all OPs attended 8 sessions. Of the OPs, 90% agreed that the peer-learning groups and the meetings spread over one year were highly effective training components. Significant improvements (p strategy focusing on perceived barriers and tailor-made implementation interventions is a feasible method to enhance guideline adherence. Moreover, the strategy contributed to OPs' knowledge, attitudes, and skills in using the guideline. As a generic approach to overcome barriers perceived in specific situations, this strategy provides a useful method to guideline implementation for other health care professionals too.

  15. Communication Strategies to Counter Stigma and Improve Mental Illness and Substance Use Disorder Policy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGinty, Emma; Pescosolido, Bernice; Kennedy-Hendricks, Alene; Barry, Colleen L

    2018-02-01

    Despite the high burden and poor rates of treatment associated with mental illness and substance use disorders, public support for allocating resources to improving treatment for these disorders is low. A growing body of research suggests that effective policy communication strategies can increase public support for policies benefiting people with these conditions. In October 2015, the Center for Mental Health and Addiction Policy Research at Johns Hopkins University convened an expert forum to identify what is currently known about the effectiveness of such policy communication strategies and produce recommendations for future research. One of the key conclusions of the forum was that communication strategies using personal narratives to engage audiences have the potential to increase public support for policies benefiting persons with mental illness or substance use disorders. Specifically, narratives combining personal stories with depictions of structural barriers to mental illness and substance use disorder treatment can increase the public's willingness to invest in the treatment system. Depictions of mental illness and violence significantly increase public stigma toward people with mental illness and are no more effective in increasing willingness to invest in mental health services than nonstigmatizing messages about structural barriers to treatment. Future research should prioritize development and evaluation of communication strategies to increase public support for evidence-based substance use disorder policies, including harm reduction policies-such as needle exchange programs-and policies expanding treatment.

  16. Multi-reception strategy with improved SNR for multichannel MR imaging.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bing Wu

    Full Text Available A multi-reception strategy with extended GRAPPA is proposed in this work to improve MR imaging performance at ultra-high field MR systems with limited receiver channels. In this method, coil elements are separated to two or more groups under appropriate grouping criteria. Those groups are enabled in sequence for imaging first, and then parallel acquisition is performed to compensate for the redundant scan time caused by the multiple receptions. To efficiently reconstruct the data acquired from elements of each group, a specific extended GRAPPA was developed. This approach was evaluated by using a 16-element head array on a 7 Tesla whole-body MRI scanner with 8 receive channels. The in-vivo experiments demonstrate that with the same scan time, the 16-element array with twice receptions and acceleration rate of 2 can achieve significant SNR gain in the periphery area of the brain and keep nearly the same SNR in the center area over an eight-element array, which indicates the proposed multi-reception strategy and extended GRAPPA are feasible to improve image quality for MRI systems with limited receive channels. This study also suggests that it is advantageous for a MR system with N receiver channels to utilize a coil array with more than N elements if an appropriate acquisition strategy is applied.

  17. Evaluating expansion strategies for startup European Union dairy farm businesses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDonald, R; Shalloo, L; Pierce, K M; Horan, B

    2013-06-01

    A stochastic whole-farm simulation model was used to examine alternative strategies for new entrant dairy farmers to grow and develop dairy farm businesses in the context of European Union (EU) milk quota abolition in 2015. Six alternative strategies were compared: remain static, natural growth expansion, waiting until after EU milk quota abolition to expand, a full-scale expansion strategy without milk quotas and not incurring super levy penalties, a full-scale expansion strategy with milk quotas and incurring super levy penalties, and once-a-day milking until EU milk quota abolition, followed by full-scale expansion. Each discrete whole farm investment strategy was evaluated over a 15-yr period (2013-2027) using multiple financial stability and risk indicators, including overall discounted farm business profitability, net worth change, return on investment, and financial risk. The results of this study indicate that, although associated with increased risk, dairy farm expansion will ensure the future profitability of the farm business. Within the context of EU milk quotas until 2015, the most attractive expansion strategy is to increase cow numbers while avoiding super levy fines using once-a-day milking techniques, increasing to the full capacity of the dairy farm once milk quotas are removed. In contrast, the results also indicate that dairy farms that remain static will experience a significant reduction in farm profitability in the coming year due to production cost inflation. Cash flow deficits were observed during the initial year of expansion and, therefore, rapidly expanding dairy farm businesses require a significant cash reserve to alleviate business risk during the initial year of expansion. The results of this analysis also indicate that dairy farm businesses that expand using lower cost capital investments and avoid milk quota super levy fines significantly reduce the financial risks associated with expansion. Copyright © 2013 American Dairy Science

  18. Improving treatment plan evaluation with automation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Covington, Elizabeth L.; Chen, Xiaoping; Younge, Kelly C.; Lee, Choonik; Matuszak, Martha M.; Kessler, Marc L.; Keranen, Wayne; Acosta, Eduardo; Dougherty, Ashley M.; Filpansick, Stephanie E.; Moran, Jean M.

    2017-01-01

    The goal of this work is to evaluate the effectiveness of Plan-Checker Tool (PCT) which was created to improve first-time plan quality, reduce patient delays, increase the efficiency of our electronic workflow, and standardize and automate the physics plan review in the treatment planning system (TPS). PCT uses an application programming interface to check and compare data from the TPS and treatment management system (TMS). PCT includes a comprehensive checklist of automated and manual checks that are documented when performed by the user as part of a plan readiness check for treatment. Prior to and during PCT development, errors identified during the physics review and causes of patient treatment start delays were tracked to prioritize which checks should be automated. Nineteen of 33checklist items were automated, with data extracted with PCT. There was a 60% reduction in the number of patient delays in the six months after PCT release. PCT was successfully implemented for use on all external beam treatment plans in our clinic. While the number of errors found during the physics check did not decrease, automation of checks increased visibility of errors during the physics check, which led to decreased patient delays. The methods used here can be applied to any TMS and TPS that allows queries of the database. PMID:27929478

  19. Identifying strategies to improve research publication output in ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The health research community in South Africa annually produces a fair number of research papers in national and international health and related journals. Unfortunately, the proportion of papers produced by authors in health and rehabilitation sciences is insignificant compared with other disciplines. To identify strategies ...

  20. Strategy to improve a conversational isiXhosa module: Insights ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Furthermore, they recognised the role of tutors in their interactions with isiXhosa speakers, and shared broader learning about their experiences. Insights drawn from findings indicate a need to create an interactive learning environment which allows for the use of multilingual strategies when teaching isiXhosa. This study ...

  1. Improving text comprehension strategies in reading and listening settings

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Brand-Gruwel, S; Aarnoutse, CAJ; van den Bos, KP

    Traditional intervention programs for children with decoding and reading comprehension problems often focus on remediation of the decoding ability. The goal of this study was to determine whether it is possible to teach these children text comprehension strategies. The subjects were fourth-grade

  2. Dietary strategies for reduced phosphorus excretion and improved water quality

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Maguire, R.O.; Dou, Z.; Sims, J.T.; Brake, J.; Joern, B.C.

    2005-01-01

    Received for publication October 29, 2004. Cost effective feeding strategies are essential to deal with P surpluses associated with intensive animal agriculture and the consequent impact on water quality. Reduction of P overfeeding, use of feed additives to enhance dietary P utilization, and

  3. Young doctors' problem solving strategies on call may be improved

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Michelsen, Jens; Malchow-Møller, Axel; Charles, Peder

    2013-01-01

    The first year following graduation from medical school is challenging as learning from books changes to workplace-based learning. Analysis and reflection on experience may ease this transition. We used Significant Event Analysis (SEA) as a tool to explore what pre-registration house officers (PR...... (PRHOs) consider successful and problematic events, and to identify what problem-solving strategies they employ....

  4. Improving World Health: A Least Cost Strategy. Worldwatch Paper 59.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chandler, William U.

    Least-cost health strategies designed to attack the world's leading causes of unnecessary death are explored. Section 1 emphasizes the value of primary health-care procedures--midwifery, maternal education on breastfeeding and weaning, vaccinations, oral rehydration of victims of diarrhea, and antibiotics against respiratory infections--in…

  5. An Improved Grey Wolf Optimization Strategy Enhanced SVM and Its Application in Predicting the Second Major

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Wei, Yan; Ni, Ni; Liu, Dayou; Chen, Huiling; Wang, Mingjing; Li, Qiang; Cui, Xiaojun; Ye, Haipeng

    2017-01-01

    ...) was explored by using an improved grey wolf optimization (GWO) strategy in this study. An improved GWO, IGWO, was first proposed to identify the most discriminative features for major prediction...

  6. Core Self-Evaluations and Individual Strategies of Coping with Unemployment among Displaced Spanish Workers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Virkes, Tihana; Maslić Seršić, Darja; Lopez-Zafra, Esther

    2017-10-30

    Unemployment has negative but also positive effects on mental health and general well-being depending on which coping strategies the individual use. Our aim was to determine the contribution of core self-evaluations in explaining the coping strategies of job search and job devaluation, as well as to test the potential moderation effect of job search and mediation effect of job devaluation on the relationship between self core-evaluations and both positive and negative experience of unemployment. One hundred seventy-eight individuals who lost their jobs involuntarily for a longer period than one month completed a questionnaire while attending to employment office. Results show that there is a significant relation between core-self evaluations and job devaluation (.37**). Furthermore, core-self evaluations were positively related to positive experience of unemployment (r = .31; p core evaluations predicted both coping with unemployment strategies (job devaluation; β = .26; p core self-evaluations and experience of unemployment. But, individuals with a longer duration of the current period of unemployment and higher core self-evaluations had a more positive experience of unemployment, and job devaluation partially mediated this relation (SE = .002; p = .038). These results imply that programs interventions should include the improvement of core self-evaluations and the positive experience of unemployed people.

  7. Mentoring approach improves evaluation capacity of ICTD ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    Seeing evaluation as an opportunity for learning rather than as an accountability exercise;; Defining the uses of evaluation, and making sure findings are utilized; and; Ensuring participation from all stakeholders in the evaluation process. You can read the evaluation reports from the five projects: Communication Policy ...

  8. An improved local immunization strategy for scale-free networks with a high degree of clustering

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xia, Lingling; Jiang, Guoping; Song, Yurong; Song, Bo

    2017-01-01

    The design of immunization strategies is an extremely important issue for disease or computer virus control and prevention. In this paper, we propose an improved local immunization strategy based on node's clustering which was seldom considered in the existing immunization strategies. The main aim of the proposed strategy is to iteratively immunize the node which has a high connectivity and a low clustering coefficient. To validate the effectiveness of our strategy, we compare it with two typical local immunization strategies on both real and artificial networks with a high degree of clustering. Simulations on these networks demonstrate that the performance of our strategy is superior to that of two typical strategies. The proposed strategy can be regarded as a compromise between computational complexity and immune effect, which can be widely applied in scale-free networks of high clustering, such as social network, technological networks and so on. In addition, this study provides useful hints for designing optimal immunization strategy for specific network.

  9. The Evaluation of Surface Integrity During Machining of Inconel 718 with Various Laser Assistance Strategies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wojciechowski Szymon

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The paper is focused on the evaluation of surface integrity formed during turning of Inconel 718 with the application of various laser assistance strategies. The primary objective of the work was to determine the relations between the applied machining strategy and the obtained surface integrity, in order to select the effective cutting conditions allowing the obtainment of high surface quality. The carried out experiment included the machining of Inconel 718 in the conventional turning conditions, as well as during the continuous laser assisted machining and sequential laser assistance. The surface integrity was evaluated by the measurements of machined surface topographies, microstructures and the microhardness. Results revealed that surface integrity of Inconel 718 is strongly affected by the selected machining strategy. The significant improvement of the surface roughness formed during machining of Inconel 718, can be reached by the application of simultaneous laser heating and cutting (LAM.

  10. Using Storytelling Strategies to Improve Student Comprehension in Online Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Powell, Rasby Marlene; Murray, Ottis

    2012-01-01

    Previous research shows that presenting class material in story formats can improve student learning in lecture classes. This pilot study of eight sociology classes investigates the efficacy of using storytelling as a means to improve student comprehension in online classes. Our findings show that when material is presented in story format rather…

  11. Transgenic strategies for improving rice disease resistance | Zhang ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Improvement of virus resistance can be achieved by generating transgenic rice lines with expression of genes encoding viral coat protein or replication enzymes, expression of RNA interference constructs and suppression of insect vectors. Varieties with improved resistance against fungal and bacterial pathogens can be ...

  12. Communicating uncertainty in economic evaluations: verifying optimal strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koffijberg, H; de Wit, G A; Feenstra, T L

    2012-01-01

    In cost-effectiveness analysis (CEA), it is common to compare a single, new intervention with 1 or more existing interventions representing current practice ignoring other, unrelated interventions. Sectoral CEAs, in contrast, take a perspective in which the costs and effectiveness of all possible interventions within a certain disease area or health care sector are compared to maximize health in a society given resource constraints. Stochastic league tables (SLT) have been developed to represent uncertainty in sectoral CEAs but have 2 shortcomings: 1) the probabilities reflect inclusion of individual interventions and not strategies and 2) data on robustness are lacking. The authors developed an extension of SLT that addresses these shortcomings. Analogous to nonprobabilistic MAXIMIN decision rules, the uncertainty of the performance of strategies in sectoral CEAs may be judged with respect to worst possible outcomes, in terms of health effects obtainable within a given budget. Therefore, the authors assessed robustness of strategies likely to be optimal by performing optimization separately on all samples and on samples yielding worse than expected health benefits. The approach was tested on 2 examples, 1 with independent and 1 with correlated cost and effect data. The method was applicable to the original SLT example and to a new example and provided clear and easily interpretable results. Identification of interventions with robust performance as well as the best performing strategies was straightforward. Furthermore, the robustness of strategies was assessed with a MAXIMIN decision rule. The SLT extension improves the comprehensibility and extends the usefulness of outcomes of SLT for decision makers. Its use is recommended whenever an SLT approach is considered.

  13. Leadership strategies for improved nursing synergy between informatics and telehealth.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bartz, Claudia C

    2014-01-01

    The goal of best practice, best possible health care worldwide is shared by nurses and all involved with eHealth today. The purpose of this paper is to characterize the similarities and differences between informatics and telehealth from a nursing perspective, and to advocate for leadership strategies that would bring the strengths of each group to a more synergistic, collaborative professional model for the benefit of both groups. After comparing telehealth and informatics nursing and looking for commonalities, suggestions are made for bridging the gap between the two groups. Potential strategies include identifying leaders, using conflict avoidance techniques, and pursuing coaching and mentoring opportunities across the gap to enhance the professional standing and contributions of both groups. An added consideration would be to have joint conferences wherein the strengths, challenges and knowledge repositories of informatics and telehealth could be mutually appreciated.

  14. Plant-wide Control Strategy for Improving Produced Water Treatment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yang, Zhenyu; Pedersen, Simon; Løhndorf, Petar Durdevic

    2016-01-01

    This work focuses on investigation and development of an innovative Produced Water Treatment (PWT) technology for offshore oil & gas production by employing the model-based plant-wide control strategy. The key contributions lie in two folds: (i) the advanced anti-slug analysis and control...... by focusing on the upstream well-pipeline-riser systems; (ii) optimization of controlling topside separation processes, which includes both the three-phase separator and de-oiling hydrocyclone facilities. A new PWT control strategy, named direct efficiency control, has been proposed for guarantee of the PWT...... quality in a continuous and real-time manner. However, this new solution relies on the availability of reliable Oilin-Water (OiW) real-time measuring technologies, which apparently are still quite challenging and un-matured....

  15. Application of Monte Carlo simulations to improve basketball shooting strategy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Min, Byeong June

    2016-10-01

    The underlying physics of basketball shooting seems to be a straightforward example of Newtonian mechanics that can easily be traced by using numerical methods. However, a human basketball player does not make use of all the possible basketball trajectories. Instead, a basketball player will build up a database of successful shots and select the trajectory that has the greatest tolerance to the small variations of the real world. We simulate the basketball player's shooting training as a Monte Carlo sequence to build optimal shooting strategies, such as the launch speed and angle of the basketball, and whether to take a direct shot or a bank shot, as a function of the player's court position and height. The phase-space volume Ω that belongs to the successful launch velocities generated by Monte Carlo simulations is then used as the criterion to optimize a shooting strategy that incorporates not only mechanical, but also human, factors.

  16. Improving Adenovirus Based Gene Transfer: Strategies to Accomplish Immune Evasion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Amalfitano

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Adenovirus (Ad based gene transfer vectors continue to be the platform of choice for an increasing number of clinical trials worldwide. In fact, within the last five years, the number of clinical trials that utilize Ad based vectors has doubled, indicating growing enthusiasm for the numerous positive characteristics of this gene transfer platform. For example, Ad vectors can be easily and relatively inexpensively produced to high titers in a cGMP compliant manner, can be stably stored and transported, and have a broad applicability for a wide range of clinical conditions, including both gene therapy and vaccine applications. Ad vector based gene transfer will become more useful as strategies to counteract innate and/or pre-existing adaptive immune responses to Ads are developed and confirmed to be efficacious. The approaches attempting to overcome these limitations can be divided into two broad categories: pre-emptive immune modulation of the host, and selective modification of the Ad vector itself. The first category of methods includes the use of immunosuppressive drugs or specific compounds to block important immune pathways, which are known to be induced by Ads. The second category comprises several innovative strategies inclusive of: (1 Ad-capsid-display of specific inhibitors or ligands; (2 covalent modifications of the entire Ad vector capsid moiety; (3 the use of tissue specific promoters and local administration routes; (4 the use of genome modified Ads; and (5 the development of chimeric or alternative serotype Ads. This review article will focus on both the promise and the limitations of each of these immune evasion strategies, and in the process delineate future directions in developing safer and more efficacious Ad-based gene transfer strategies.

  17. Improvement of business performance in restaurants using innovation strategies

    OpenAIRE

    Gagić Snježana; Tešanović Dragan; Kalenjuk Bojana

    2014-01-01

    Innovation is an important aspect of contemporary business. Rapid change in guests' preferences and expectations significantly affect the restaurant industry. Meeting the diverse hospitality needs implies making innovative programs in all processes such as technical, technological as well as service oriented. Hospitality industry enters into the process of accelerated changes of modern equipment, updated technology, business strategies and hospitality management. The paper will discuss innova...

  18. Strategies and Technologies for Improving Air Quality Around Ports

    OpenAIRE

    Khan, Mohammad Yusuf

    2013-01-01

    Increased activity at ports is an indication of economic development and growth; however, it also puts public health, regional air quality and global climate at risk because the exhaust from the marine diesel engines is not subjected to the stringent regulations as on-road engines. This dissertation characterizes the effectiveness of strategies and technologies to mitigate criteria pollutants and the long-lived greenhouse gas, carbon dioxide (CO2) from marine diesel engines. The dissertation ...

  19. An Australian general practice based strategy to improve chronic disease prevention, and its impact on patient reported outcomes: evaluation of the preventive evidence into practice cluster randomised controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harris, Mark Fort; Parker, Sharon M; Litt, John; van Driel, Mieke; Russell, Grant; Mazza, Danielle; Jayasinghe, Upali W; Smith, Jane; Del Mar, Chris; Lane, Riki; Denney-Wilson, Elizabeth

    2017-09-08

    Implementing evidence-based chronic disease prevention with a practice-wide population is challenging in primary care. PEP Intervention practices received education, clinical audit and feedback and practice facilitation. Patients (40‑69 years) without chronic disease from trial and control practices were invited to participate in baseline and 12 month follow up questionnaires. Patient-recalled receipt of GP services and referral, and the proportion of patients at risk were compared over time and between intervention and control groups. Mean difference in BMI, diet and physical activity between baseline and follow up were calculated and compared using a paired t-test. Change in the proportion of patients meeting the definition for physical activity diet and weight risk was calculated using McNemar's test and multilevel analysis was used to determine the effect of the intervention on follow-up scores. Five hundred eighty nine patients completed both questionnaires. No significant changes were found in the proportion of patients reporting a BP, cholesterol, glucose or weight check in either group. Less than one in six at-risk patients reported receiving lifestyle advice or referral at baseline with little change at follow up. More intervention patients reported attempts to improve their diet and reduce weight. Mean score improved for diet in the intervention group (p = 0.04) but self-reported BMI and PA risk did not significantly change in either group. There was no significant change in the proportion of patients who reported being at-risk for diet, PA or weight, and no changes in PA, diet and BMI in multilevel linear regression adjusted for patient age, sex, practice size and state. There was good fidelity to the intervention but practices varied in their capacity to address changes. The lack of measurable effect within this trial may be attributable to the complexities around behaviour change and/or system change. This trial highlights some of the challenges

  20. Web proxy cache replacement strategies simulation, implementation, and performance evaluation

    CERN Document Server

    ElAarag, Hala; Cobb, Jake

    2013-01-01

    This work presents a study of cache replacement strategies designed for static web content. Proxy servers can improve performance by caching static web content such as cascading style sheets, java script source files, and large files such as images. This topic is particularly important in wireless ad hoc networks, in which mobile devices act as proxy servers for a group of other mobile devices. Opening chapters present an introduction to web requests and the characteristics of web objects, web proxy servers and Squid, and artificial neural networks. This is followed by a comprehensive review o

  1. Application of quality improvement strategies in 389 European hospitals: results of the MARQuIS project

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lombarts, M.J.M.H.; Rupp, I.; Vallejo, P.; Suñol, R.; Klazinga, N.S.

    2009-01-01

    Context: This study was part of the Methods of Assessing Response to Quality Improvement Strategies (MARQuIS) research project investigating the impact of quality improvement strategies on hospital care in various countries of the European Union (EU), in relation to specific needs of cross-border

  2. Using Metacognitive Strategies to Improve Reading Comprehension and Solve a Word Problem

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tomo Djudin

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available This article describes briefly the theories of metacognition and the impacts of metacognitive skills on learning. The differences between cognitive strategy and metacognitive strategy were mentioned. Some strategies to improve students’ meta cognition skills in the classroom explored as well. Based on the theories, two models of metacognitive strategies instruction for deeply understanding in reading textbook and for finding a solution of words physics problem solving were developed. These models will enable students to be independent and strategic learners.

  3. Improving the Process of Student Evaluation

    OpenAIRE

    Gabriela Neacşu; Laura Patache; Daniel Dăneci-Pătrău; Camelia Boarcăş; Alina Valentina Gherco

    2013-01-01

    In this paper we analyzed the process of student evaluation from “Spiru Haret” University. The process under consideration occurs according to a specific Procedure – Process of student evaluation from the Manual of Quality Assurance Procedures, “Spiru Haret” University, Edition 1, 2012. The goal of this procedure, mentioned in the Manual, is to present the student evaluation procedure by using the Blackboard educational platform and other evaluation techniques of quality learning, based on ma...

  4. Randomized dynamical decoupling strategies and improved one-way key rates for quantum cryptography

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kern, Oliver

    2009-05-25

    noisy preprocessing) followed by the use of a structured block code, higher secure key rates may be obtained. For the BB84 protocol it is shown that iterating the combined preprocessing leads to an even higher gain. In order to speed up the numerical evaluation of the key rates, results of representation theory come into play. If a coherent version of the protocol is considered, the block code used in the preprocessing stage becomes a concatenated stabilizer code which is obtained by concatenating an outer random code with an inner deterministic one. This concatenated stabilizer code is used to compute an improved lower bound on the quantum capacity of a certain quantum channel (the so-called qubit depolarizing channel). (orig.)

  5. Improving skills in pediatric rheumatology in Colombia: a combined educational strategy supported by ILAR.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pino, Sally; Mora, Claudia; Diaz, Adriana; Guarnizo, Pilar; Jaimes, Diego

    2017-07-01

    Colombia is a densely populated country with a small number of pediatric rheumatology specialists, including 14 specialists for a population of 1,927,000 children in 2014. The objective of the study was to improve the skills required for early identification, timely referral, and management of musculoskeletal diseases, especially juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA), in a group of pediatricians and pediatric residents in a remote region of Colombia. Supported by grant programs developed by the International League of Associations for Rheumatology (ILAR), a combined educational strategy (blended learning) was implemented based on two classroom educational activities and four online modules. The students' acquired knowledge and perception of the strategy were evaluated. Scores were reported as median values and interquartile ranges (IQR), and the differences between scores were estimated using the Wilcoxon test for equal medians. Forty-one students were enrolled, 37 completed the online modules, and 33 attended the final in-person session. The results of the written tests demonstrated an improved ability to solve clinical problems compared with the results of the tests before the course (the median initial vs. final test scores 3 (IQR = 1) vs. 5 (IQR = 0), p = 0.000). The students reported high levels of satisfaction related to compliance with the proposed objectives, the relevance of the contents and activities performed, and the impact on everyday practice. These types of strategies are useful as tools for continuing medical education. However, the results pertain only to short-term learning. It is necessary to evaluate their impact on "lifelong learning."

  6. Strategies for Improving Learner Metacognition in Health Professional Education.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Medina, Melissa S; Castleberry, Ashley N; Persky, Adam M

    2017-05-01

    Metacognition is an essential skill in critical thinking and self-regulated, lifelong learning. It is important for learners to have skills in metacognition because they are used to monitor and regulate reasoning, comprehension, and problem-solving, which are fundamental components/outcomes of pharmacy curricula. Instructors can help learners develop metacognitive skills within the classroom and experiential setting by carefully designing learning activities within courses and the curriculum. These skills are developed through intentional questioning, modeling techniques, and reflection. This article discusses key background literature on metacognition and identifies specific methods and strategies to develop learners' metacognitive skills in both the classroom and experiential settings.

  7. Improvement of business performance in restaurants using innovation strategies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gagić Snježana

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Innovation is an important aspect of contemporary business. Rapid change in guests' preferences and expectations significantly affect the restaurant industry. Meeting the diverse hospitality needs implies making innovative programs in all processes such as technical, technological as well as service oriented. Hospitality industry enters into the process of accelerated changes of modern equipment, updated technology, business strategies and hospitality management. The paper will discuss innovative offer design, molecular gastronomy, modern food presentation technique as well as authentic culinary products offer. By introducing such innovations, restaurants create the image of organisations following current trends as well as responding to the market requirements.

  8. Plant-wide control strategy for improving produced water treatment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yang, Zhenyu; Pedersen, Simon; Durdevic, Petar

    2016-01-01

    This work focuses on investigation and development of an innovative Produced Water Treatment (PWT) technology for offshore oil & gas production by employing the model-based plant-wide control strategy. The key contributions lie in two folds: (i) the advanced anti-slug analysis and control...... quality in a continuous and real-time manner. However, this new solution relies on the availability of reliable Oilin-Water (OiW) real-time measuring technologies, which apparently are still quite challenging and un-matured....

  9. Agile rediscovering values: Similarities to continuous improvement strategies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Díaz de Mera, P.; Arenas, J. M.; González, C.

    2012-04-01

    Research in the late 80's on technological companies that develop products of high value innovation, with sufficient speed and flexibility to adapt quickly to changing market conditions, gave rise to the new set of methodologies known as Agile Management Approach. In the current changing economic scenario, we considered very interesting to study the similarities of these Agile Methodologies with other practices whose effectiveness has been amply demonstrated in both the West and Japan. Strategies such as Kaizen, Lean, World Class Manufacturing, Concurrent Engineering, etc, would be analyzed to check the values they have in common with the Agile Approach.

  10. Strategy for improved [{sup 11}C]DAA1106 radiosynthesis and in vivo peripheral benzodiazepine receptor imaging using microPET, evaluation of [{sup 11}C]DAA1106

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Probst, Katrin C. [Wolfson Brain Imaging Centre, Department of Clinical Neurosciences, University of Cambridge, Addenbrooke' s Hospital, CB2 2QQ Cambridge (United Kingdom)]|[BHF Carotid Imaging Group, University of Cambridge, Addenbrooke' s Hospital, CB2 2QQ Cambridge (United Kingdom)]. E-mail: kp296@wbic.cam.ac.uk; Izquierdo, David [Wolfson Brain Imaging Centre, Department of Clinical Neurosciences, University of Cambridge, Addenbrooke' s Hospital, CB2 2QQ Cambridge (United Kingdom)]|[BHF Carotid Imaging Group, University of Cambridge, Addenbrooke' s Hospital, CB2 2QQ Cambridge (United Kingdom); Bird, Joseph L.E. [BHF Carotid Imaging Group, University of Cambridge, Addenbrooke' s Hospital, CB2 2QQ Cambridge (United Kingdom)]|[Department of Medicine, Cardiovascular Medicine Division, University of Cambridge, Addenbrooke' s Hospital, CB2 2QQ Cambridge (United Kingdom); Brichard, Laurent; Franck, Dominic; Fryer, Tim D.; Clark, John C. [Wolfson Brain Imaging Centre, Department of Clinical Neurosciences, University of Cambridge, Addenbrooke' s Hospital, CB2 2QQ Cambridge (United Kingdom); Davies, John R. [Cardiovascular Medicine Division, University of Cambridge, Addenbrooke' s Hospital, CB2 2QQ Cambridge (United Kingdom); Richards, Hugh K. [Neurology Unit, University of Cambridge, Addenbrooke' s Hospital, CB2 2QQ Cambridge (United Kingdom); Davenport, Anthony P. [Clinical Pharmacology Unit, University of Cambridge, Addenbrooke' s Hospital, CB2 2QQ Cambridge (United Kingdom); Weissberg, Peter L. [Cardiovascular Medicine Division, University of Cambridge, Addenbrooke' s Hospital, CB2 2QQ Cambridge (United Kingdom); Warburton, Elizabeth A. [BHF Carotid Imaging Group, University of Cambridge, Addenbrooke' s Hospital, CB2 2QQ Cambridge (United Kingdom)]|[Department of Clinical Neurosciences, University of Cambridge, Addenbrooke' s Hospital, CB2 2QQ Cambridge (United Kingdom)

    2007-05-15

    Introduction: The peripheral benzodiazepine receptor (PBR) has shown considerable potential as a clinical marker of neuroinflammation and tumour progression. [{sup 11}C]DAA1106 ([{sup 11}C]N-(2,5-dimethoxybenzyl)-N-(5-fluoro-2-phenoxyphenyl)-acetamide) is a promising positron emission tomography (PET) radioligand for imaging PBRs. Methods: A four-step synthetic route was devised to prepare DAA1123, the precursor for [{sup 11}C]DAA1106. Two robust, high yielding methods for radiosynthesis based on [{sup 11}C]-O-methylation of DAA1123 were developed and implemented on a nuclear interface methylation module, producing [{sup 11}C]DAA1106 with up to 25% radiochemical yields at end-of-synthesis based on [{sup 11}C]CH{sub 3}I trapped. Evaluation of [{sup 11}C]DAA1106 for in vivo imaging was performed in a rabbit model with microPET, and the presence of PBR receptor in the target organ was further corroborated by immunohistochemistry. Results: The standard solution method produced 2.6-5.2 GBq (n=19) of [{sup 11}C]DAA1106, whilst the captive solvent method produced 1.6-6.3 GBq (n=10) of [{sup 11}C]DAA1106. Radiochemical purities obtained were 99% and specific radioactivity at end-of-synthesis was up to 200 GBq/{mu}mol for both methods. Based on radiochemical product, shorter preparation times and simplicity of synthesis, the captive solvent method was chosen for routine productions of [{sup 11}C]DAA1106. In vivo microPET [{sup 11}C]DAA1106 scans of rabbit kidney demonstrated high levels of binding in the cortex. The subsequent introduction of nonradioactive DAA1106 (0.2 {mu}mol) produced considerable displacement of the radioactive signal in this region. The presence of PBR in kidney cortex was further corroborated by immunohistochemistry. Conclusions: A robust, high yielding captive solvent method of [{sup 11}C]DAA1106 production was developed which enabled efficacious in vivo imaging of PBR expressing tissues in an animal model.

  11. Evaluation of a cochlear-implant processing strategy incorporating phantom stimulation and asymmetric pulses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlyon, Robert P; Monstrey, Jolijn; Deeks, John M; Macherey, Olivier

    2014-12-01

    To evaluate a speech-processing strategy in which the lowest frequency channel is conveyed using an asymmetric pulse shape and "phantom stimulation", where current is injected into one intra-cochlear electrode and where the return current is shared between an intra-cochlear and an extra-cochlear electrode. This strategy is expected to provide more selective excitation of the cochlear apex, compared to a standard strategy where the lowest-frequency channel is conveyed by symmetric pulses in monopolar mode. In both strategies all other channels were conveyed by monopolar stimulation. Within-subjects comparison between the two strategies. Four experiments: (1) discrimination between the strategies, controlling for loudness differences, (2) consonant identification, (3) recognition of lowpass-filtered sentences in quiet, (4) sentence recognition in the presence of a competing speaker. Eight users of the Advanced Bionics CII/Hi-Res 90k cochlear implant. Listeners could easily discriminate between the two strategies but no consistent differences in performance were observed. The proposed method does not improve speech perception, at least in the short term.

  12. Evaluation of Improved Spacecraft Models for GLONASS Orbit Determination

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weiss, J. P.; Sibthorpe, A.; Harvey, N.; Bar-Sever, Y.; Kuang, D.

    2010-12-01

    High-fidelity spacecraft models become more important as orbit determination strategies achieve greater levels of precision and accuracy. In this presentation, we assess the impacts of new solar radiation pressure and attitude models on precise orbit determination (POD) for GLONASS spacecraft within JPLs GIPSY-OASIS software. A new solar radiation pressure model is developed by empirically fitting a Fourier expansion to solar pressure forces acting on the spacecraft X, Y, Z components using one year of recent orbit data. Compared to a basic “box-wing” solar pressure model, the median 24-hour orbit prediction accuracy for one month of independent test data improves by 43%. We additionally implement an updated yaw attitude model during eclipse periods. We evaluate the impacts of both models on post-processed POD solutions spanning 6-months. We consider a number of metrics such as internal orbit and clock overlaps as well as comparisons to independent solutions. Improved yaw attitude modeling reduces the dependence of these metrics on the “solar elevation” angle. The updated solar pressure model improves orbit overlap statistics by several mm in the median sense and centimeters in the max sense (1D). Orbit differences relative to the IGS combined solution are at or below the 5 cm level (1D RMS).

  13. Evaluation of Ventilation Strategies in New Construction Multifamily Buildings

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Maxwell, S. [Consortium for Advanced Residential Buildings (CARB), Norwalk, CT (United States); Berger, D. [Consortium for Advanced Residential Buildings (CARB), Norwalk, CT (United States); Zuluaga, M. [Consortium for Advanced Residential Buildings (CARB), Norwalk, CT (United States)

    2014-07-01

    In multifamily buildings, particularly in the Northeast, exhaust ventilation strategies are the norm as a means of meeting both local exhaust and whole-unit mechanical ventilation rates. The issue of where the "fresh" air is coming from is gaining significance as air-tightness standards for enclosures become more stringent. CARB researchers have found that most new high performance, multifamily housing in the Northeast use one of four strategies for ventilation: continuous exhaust only with no designated supply or make-up air source, continuous exhaust with ducted make-up air to apartments, continuous exhaust with supply through a make-up air device integral to the unit HVAC, and continuous exhaust with supply through a passive inlet device, such as a trickle vent. Insufficient information is available to designers on how these various systems are best applied. Product performance data are based on laboratory tests, but there is no guarantee that those conditions will exist consistently in the finished building. In this research project, CARB evaluated the four ventilation strategies in the field to validate system performance.

  14. Evaluation of Ventilation Strategies in New Construction Multifamily Buildings

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Maxwell, S.; Berger, D.; Zuluaga, M.

    2014-07-01

    In multifamily buildings, particularly in the Northeast, exhaust ventilation strategies are the norm as a means of meeting both local exhaust and whole-unit mechanical ventilation rates. The issue of where the 'fresh' air is coming from is gaining significance as air-tightness standards for enclosures become more stringent, and the 'normal leakage paths through the building envelope' disappear. CARB researchers have found that the majority of high performance, new construction, multifamily housing in the Northeast use one of four general strategies for ventilation: continuous exhaust only with no designated supply or make-up air source, continuous exhaust with ducted make-up air to apartments, continuous exhaust with supply through a make-up air device integral to the unit HVAC, and continuous exhaust with supply through a passive inlet device, such as a trickle vent. Insufficient information is available to designers on how these various systems are best applied. Product performance data are based on laboratory tests, and the assumption is that products will perform similarly in the field. Proper application involves matching expected performance at expected building pressures, but there is no guarantee that those conditions will exist consistently in the finished building. This research effort, which included several weeks of building pressure monitoring, sought to provide field validation of system performance. The performance of four substantially different strategies for providing make-up air to apartments was evaluated.

  15. Evaluation of Electric Power Procurement Strategies by Stochastic Dynamic Programming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saisho, Yuichi; Hayashi, Taketo; Fujii, Yasumasa; Yamaji, Kenji

    In deregulated electricity markets, the role of a distribution company is to purchase electricity from the wholesale electricity market at randomly fluctuating prices and to provide it to its customers at a given fixed price. Therefore the company has to take risk stemming from the uncertainties of electricity prices and/or demand fluctuation instead of the customers. The way to avoid the risk is to make a bilateral contact with generating companies or install its own power generation facility. This entails the necessity to develop a certain method to make an optimal strategy for electric power procurement. In such a circumstance, this research has the purpose for proposing a mathematical method based on stochastic dynamic programming and additionally considering the characteristics of the start-up cost of electric power generation facility to evaluate strategies of combination of the bilateral contract and power auto-generation with its own facility for procuring electric power in deregulated electricity market. In the beginning we proposed two approaches to solve the stochastic dynamic programming, and they are a Monte Carlo simulation method and a finite difference method to derive the solution of a partial differential equation of the total procurement cost of electric power. Finally we discussed the influences of the price uncertainty on optimal strategies of power procurement.

  16. Obesity prevention strategies: could food or soda taxes improve health?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Encarnação, R; Lloyd-Williams, F; Bromley, H; Capewell, S

    2016-03-01

    Evidence shows that one of the main causes for rising obesity rates is excessive consumption of sugar, which is due in large part to the high sugar content of most soda and juice drinks and junk foods. Worryingly, UK and global populations are consuming increasing amounts of sugary drinks and junk foods (high in salt, sugar and saturated fats). However, there is raised public awareness, and parents in particular want something to be done to curb the alarming rise in childhood obesity. Population-wide policies (i.e. taxation, regulation, legislation, reformulation) consistently achieve greater public health gains than interventions and strategies targeted at individuals. Junk food and soda taxes are supported by increasing evidence from empirical and modelling studies. The strongest evidence base is for a tax on sugar sweetened beverages, but in order to effectively reduce consumption, that taxation needs to be at least 20%. Empirical data from a number of countries which have implemented a duty on sugar or sugary drinks shows rapid, substantial benefits. In the UK, increasing evidence from recent scientific reports consistently support substantial reductions in sugar consumption through comprehensive strategies which include a tax. Furthermore, there is increasing public support for such measures. A sugar sweetened beverages tax will happen in the UK so the question is not 'If?' but 'When?' this tax will be implemented. And, crucially, which nation will get there first? England, Ireland, Scotland or Wales?

  17. Psoriasis in childhood: effective strategies to improve treatment adherence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shah, Kara N; Cortina, Sandra; Ernst, Michelle M; Kichler, Jessica C

    2015-01-01

    Psoriasis is a relatively common chronic inflammatory skin disease in children for which there is no cure. Most children have mild disease that can be managed with topical therapy as opposed to phototherapy or systemic therapy. Despite the mild presentation of psoriasis in most children, the disease can have a significant impact on quality of life due to the need for ongoing treatment, the frequently visible nature of the cutaneous manifestations, and the social stigma that is associated with psoriasis. Adherence to treatment, in particular topical therapy, is often poor in adults and compromises response to therapy and medical provider management strategies. Multiple factors that may contribute to nonadherence in adults with psoriasis have been identified, including lack of education on the disease and expectations for management, issues related to ease of use and acceptability of topical medications, and anxiety regarding possible medication side effects. There is currently no published data on adherence in the pediatric psoriasis population; however, poor adherence is often suspected when patients fail to respond to appropriate therapy. General strategies used to assess adherence in other pediatric disease populations can be applied to children with psoriasis, and interventions that reflect experience in other chronic dermatologic disorders such as atopic dermatitis may also be helpful for medical providers caring for children with psoriasis.

  18. Energy Efficient Strategy for Throughput Improvement in Wireless Sensor Networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sohail Jabbar

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Network lifetime and throughput are one of the prime concerns while designing routing protocols for wireless sensor networks (WSNs. However, most of the existing schemes are either geared towards prolonging network lifetime or improving throughput. This paper presents an energy efficient routing scheme for throughput improvement in WSN. The proposed scheme exploits multilayer cluster design for energy efficient forwarding node selection, cluster heads rotation and both inter- and intra-cluster routing. To improve throughput, we rotate the role of cluster head among various nodes based on two threshold levels which reduces the number of dropped packets. We conducted simulations in the NS2 simulator to validate the performance of the proposed scheme. Simulation results demonstrate the performance efficiency of the proposed scheme in terms of various metrics compared to similar approaches published in the literature.

  19. Radical systems change. Innovative strategies to improve patient satisfaction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rave, Nick; Geyer, Monica; Reeder, Barbara; Ernst, John; Goldberg, Larry; Barnard, Cynthia

    2003-01-01

    A project was initiated at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago focusing on patient satisfaction in the outpatient setting and how to improve it. Eight outpatient diagnostic areas were selected and a steering committee was formed. The team used patient satisfaction scores and patient and staff interviews to identify areas for improvement. Innovations were implemented in communications and information technology, staff role design, and process flow. Successes were realized in patient satisfaction above the 95th percentile, improved staff satisfaction, productivity, and internal and external recognition. The program serves as an organizationwide model supporting the hospital's Best Patient Experience strategic goal. This patient-focused model is being replicated in other areas of the hospital and can be replicated elsewhere.

  20. Energy efficient strategy for throughput improvement in wireless sensor networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jabbar, Sohail; Minhas, Abid Ali; Imran, Muhammad; Khalid, Shehzad; Saleem, Kashif

    2015-01-23

    Network lifetime and throughput are one of the prime concerns while designing routing protocols for wireless sensor networks (WSNs). However, most of the existing schemes are either geared towards prolonging network lifetime or improving throughput. This paper presents an energy efficient routing scheme for throughput improvement in WSN. The proposed scheme exploits multilayer cluster design for energy efficient forwarding node selection, cluster heads rotation and both inter- and intra-cluster routing. To improve throughput, we rotate the role of cluster head among various nodes based on two threshold levels which reduces the number of dropped packets. We conducted simulations in the NS2 simulator to validate the performance of the proposed scheme. Simulation results demonstrate the performance efficiency of the proposed scheme in terms of various metrics compared to similar approaches published in the literature.

  1. Improving system quality through software evaluation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDaniel, James G

    2002-05-01

    The role of evaluation is examined with respect to quality of software in healthcare. Of particular note is the failure of the Therac-25 radiation therapy machine. This example provides evidence of several types of defect which could have been detected and corrected using appropriate evaluation procedures. The field of software engineering has developed metrics and guidelines to assist in software evaluation but this example indicates that software evaluation must be extended beyond the formally defined interfaces of the software to its real-life operating context.

  2. Strategies for university improvement: The research profile change ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    We contribute by presenting a detailed case study of a non-research-intensive university which implemented drastic change to achieve improvement, with emphasis on research, research management and interdisciplinarity. The case study provides insight into the processes, restructuring and outcomes, illustrates the ...

  3. Strategies for Improving Compliance with Health Promotion Programs in Industry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feldman, Robert H. L.

    1983-01-01

    Behavioral, educational, and organizational methods for improving the degree to which workers comply with the objectives of industrial health promotion programs are discussed. Compliance can be enhanced through: (1) better program location and scheduling; (2) increased worker satisfaction; (3) use of psychological and educational techniques; and…

  4. A fuzzy logic based clustering strategy for improving vehicular ad ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Abstract. This paper aims to improve the clustering of vehicles by using fuzzy logic in Vehicular Ad-Hoc Networks (VANETs) for making the network more robust and scalable. High mobility and scalability are two vital topics to be considered while providing efficient and reliable communication in VANETs. Clustering is of ...

  5. Strategies to Improve the Quality of Health Care - Learning from ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    Improving access to primary health care and the quality of services in Latin American countries is urgently needed to address high health inequities in the region. Lessons learned from two successful campaigns promoting maternal and child health in Chile and Uruguay could provide insights for further health reforms and ...

  6. Strategies for Improving Participation and Performance of Girls in ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The findings indicate that initiation of awareness programmes on the relevance of science for parents and girls and also making perception and attitudes of teachers vis-à-vis girls in science positive will go a long way in improving girls participation and performance in science. Furthermore, organization of science groups ...

  7. Improved Input Combination Strategy for Increased Productivity And ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The aim was to introduce a new input combination package, compare it with the local production practices and use the result to tackle the rice productivity problem of the area. The new package comprised improved varieties of lowland rice, inorganic fertilizer, herbicide and planting technique, whereas the local production ...

  8. An evaluation of management strategies for Atlantic tuna stocks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. T. Kell

    2003-04-01

    Full Text Available International agreements for the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT convention area imply that Atlantic tuna stocks should be managed by strategies based on maximum sustainable yield (MSY; however, there is concern whether this will actually ensure sustainability with sufficiently high probability consistent with the principals of the precautionary approach. Therefore, the performance of MSY management strategies based on current assessment procedures was evaluated using a computer simulation framework. The framework includes the data collection, assessment, prediction, and management processes, as well as the implementation of management regulations. It therefore provides an integrated way to evaluate the relative importance of and the interactions between each component of the system with regard to the overall success of the management strategy. The study elucidates guidelines about assessment and management that are general enough to be applied to all tunas in the Atlantic Ocean. It does so by comparing different hypotheses about management and assessment for three stocks (North Atlantic albacore, Atlantic bigeye and East Atlantic skipjack, which are representative of the variety encountered (i.e. from data rich to poor and tropical to temperate waters in ICCAT stocks. Management performance was especially sensitive to the carrying capacity of the stock. The type of proxy used for MSY was more important to the success of the procedure than the frequency of assessment or the number of indices used in the assessment. Whilst the procedure was successful at achieving the management objectives for albacore, it was only partially successful for bigeye and was too conservative for skipjack.

  9. [Better antibiotic use in complicated urinary tract infections; multicentre cluster randomised trial of 2 improvement strategies].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spoorenberg, V; Hulscher, M E J L; Geskus, R B; de Reijke, T M; Opmeer, B C; Prins, J M; Geerlings, S E

    2016-01-01

    To compare the effectiveness of two strategies to improve antibiotic use in patients with a complicated urinary tract infection. Multicentre cluster randomised unblinded trial. The departments of Internal Medicine and Urology from 19 hospitals in the Netherlands took part in this trial. Based on retrospective patient record investigations we performed baseline measurements on the scores of a validated set of quality indicators for antibiotic use in a minimum of 50 patients with a complicated urinary tract infection per department in 2009. A similar post-trial measurement took place in 2012. In 2010 we randomised the hospitals between 2 improvement strategies: a multifaceted strategy that included results of the baseline measurements, education, reminders and assistance with optional improvement interventions, and a competitive feedback strategy, in which the departments only received results of the baseline measurements and non-anonymous results from the other departments in this study arm. The primary outcome measure was improvement of the quality indicator scores. Secondary outcome measures were determinants of improvement of the indicators. (Netherlands Trial Register: NTR1742) RESULTS: The baseline and post-trial measurements were performed on 1,964 patients and 2,027 patients, respectively. Post-trial measurements revealed a significant, but limited, improvement of several indicators compared with baseline measurements. We found no significant difference in improvement between the two strategies for any indicator. The intensity with which the departments implemented improvement strategies was mostly suboptimal, but intensive implementation of a strategy was associated with greater improvement. The effectiveness of both improvement strategies was comparable, but limited. For real improvement in antibiotic use in patients with complicated urinary tract infections, improvement interventions should be developed and applied by local professionals themselves.

  10. Quick Reference Guide: Working with Stakeholders to Identify Potential Improvement Strategies for Program Improvement (Including the SSIP)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Center for IDEA Early Childhood Data Systems (DaSy), 2015

    2015-01-01

    This 2015 quick reference guide is designed to assist states in understanding what information needs to be available in order for stakeholders to assist in selecting potential improvement strategies that will increase capacity of Local Education Agencies (LEAs), Early Intervention Services (EIS) programs, and practitioners to improve results for…

  11. Novel Strategy to Improve the Performance of Localization in WSN

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Vasim Babu

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available A novel strategy of discrete energy consumption model for WSN based on quasi Monte Carlo and crude Monte Carlo method is developed. In our model the discrete hidden Markov process plays a major role in analyzing the node location in heterogeneous media. In this energy consumption model we use both static and dynamic sensor nodes to monitor the optimized energy of all sensor nodes in which every sensor state can be considered as the dynamic Bayesian network. By using this method the power is assigned in terms of dynamic manner to each sensor over discrete time steps to control the graphical structure of our network. The simulation and experiment result shows that our proposed methods are better in terms of localization accuracy and possess minimum computational time over existing localization method.

  12. Vaccines against Human Carcinomas: Strategies to Improve Antitumor Immune Responses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claudia Palena

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Multiple observations in preclinical and clinical studies support a role for the immune system in controlling tumor growth and progression. Various components of the innate and adaptive immune response are able to mediate tumor cell destruction; however, certain immune cell populations can also induce a protumor environment that favors tumor growth and the development of metastasis. Moreover, tumor cells themselves are equipped with various mechanisms that allow them to evade surveillance by the immune system. The goal of cancer vaccines is to induce a tumor-specific immune response that ultimately will reduce tumor burden by tipping the balance from a protumor to an antitumor immune environment. This review discusses common mechanisms that govern immune cell activation and tumor immune escape, and some of the current strategies employed in the field of cancer vaccines aimed at enhancing activation of tumor-specific T-cells with concurrent reduction of immunosuppression.

  13. Novel Strategy to Improve the Performance of Localization in WSN.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Babu, M Vasim; Ramprasad, A V

    2015-01-01

    A novel strategy of discrete energy consumption model for WSN based on quasi Monte Carlo and crude Monte Carlo method is developed. In our model the discrete hidden Markov process plays a major role in analyzing the node location in heterogeneous media. In this energy consumption model we use both static and dynamic sensor nodes to monitor the optimized energy of all sensor nodes in which every sensor state can be considered as the dynamic Bayesian network. By using this method the power is assigned in terms of dynamic manner to each sensor over discrete time steps to control the graphical structure of our network. The simulation and experiment result shows that our proposed methods are better in terms of localization accuracy and possess minimum computational time over existing localization method.

  14. Repeat rates in digital chest radiography and strategies for improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fintelmann, Florian; Pulli, Benjamin; Abedi-Tari, Faezeh; Trombley, Maureen; Shore, Mary-Theresa; Shepard, Jo-Anne; Rosenthal, Daniel I

    2012-05-01

    To determine the repeat rate (RR) of chest radiographs acquired with portable computed radiography (CR) and installed direct radiography (DR) and to develop and assess strategies designed to decrease the RR. The RR and reasons for repeated digital chest radiographs were documented over the course of 16 months while a task force of thoracic radiologists, technologist supervisors, technologists, and information technology specialists continued to examine the workflow for underlying causes. Interventions decreasing the RR were designed and implemented. The initial RR of digital chest radiographs was 3.6% (138/3818) for portable CR and 13.3% (476/3575) for installed DR systems. By combining RR measurement with workflow analysis, targets for technical and teaching interventions were identified. The interventions decreased the RR to 1.8% (81/4476) for portable CR and to 8.2% (306/3748) for installed DR. We found the RR of direct digital chest radiography to be significantly higher than that of computed chest radiography. We believe this is due to the ease with which repeat images can be obtained and discarded, and it suggests the need for ongoing surveillance of RR. We were able to demonstrate that strategies to lower the RR, which had been developed in the era of film-based imaging, can be adapted to the digital environment. On the basis of our findings, we encourage radiologists to assess their own departmental RRs for direct digital chest radiography and to consider similar interventions if necessary to achieve acceptable RRs for this modality.

  15. Psoriasis in childhood: effective strategies to improve treatment adherence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shah KN

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Kara N Shah,1 Sandra Cortina,2,3 Michelle M Ernst,2 Jessica C Kichler2 1Division of Pediatric Dermatology, 2Division of Behavioral Medicine and Clinical Psychology, 3Center for Adherence and Self-Management, Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, OH, USA Abstract: Psoriasis is a relatively common chronic inflammatory skin disease in children for which there is no cure. Most children have mild disease that can be managed with topical therapy as opposed to phototherapy or systemic therapy. Despite the mild presentation of psoriasis in most children, the disease can have a significant impact on quality of life due to the need for ongoing treatment, the frequently visible nature of the cutaneous manifestations, and the social stigma that is associated with psoriasis. Adherence to treatment, in particular topical therapy, is often poor in adults and compromises response to therapy and medical provider management strategies. Multiple factors that may contribute to nonadherence in adults with psoriasis have been identified, including lack of education on the disease and expectations for management, issues related to ease of use and acceptability of topical medications, and anxiety regarding possible medication side effects. There is currently no published data on adherence in the pediatric psoriasis population; however, poor adherence is often suspected when patients fail to respond to appropriate therapy. General strategies used to assess adherence in other pediatric disease populations can be applied to children with psoriasis, and interventions that reflect experience in other chronic dermatologic disorders such as atopic dermatitis may also be helpful for medical providers caring for children with psoriasis. Keywords: adherence, psoriasis, children

  16. Software Maintenance Management Evaluation and Continuous Improvement

    CERN Document Server

    April, Alain

    2008-01-01

    This book explores the domain of software maintenance management and provides road maps for improving software maintenance organizations. It describes full maintenance maturity models organized by levels 1, 2, and 3, which allow for benchmarking and continuous improvement paths. Goals for each key practice area are also provided, and the model presented is fully aligned with the architecture and framework of software development maturity models of CMMI and ISO 15504. It is complete with case studies, figures, tables, and graphs.

  17. A fuzzy logic based clustering strategy for improving vehicular ad ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Clustering is of crucial significance in order to cope with the dynamic features of the VANET topologies. Plenty of parameters related to user preferences, network conditions and application requirements such as speed of mobile nodes, distance to cluster head, data rate and signal strength must be evaluated in the cluster ...

  18. Implementation of quality improvement strategies for better patient care

    OpenAIRE

    Asinas-Tan, Marxengel; Leonardo, Josephine; Aldana, Eduardo; Reboton, William Christian; Libunao, Jose Antonio

    2016-01-01

    In the recent decade, Quality has become an important policy issue in the Philippine health care setting. Current data suggests thousands of people suffering from complications following medical errors and hospital inaccuracies each year despite having well-qualified medical professionals tending to their conditions. Its impact has become more apparent in hospitals, and the push for continuous quality improvement has become evident following amendments in hospital accreditation standards as w...

  19. Improving oversight of the graduate medical education enterprise: one institution's strategies and tools.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Afrin, Lawrence B; Arana, George W; Medio, Franklin J; Ybarra, Angela F N; Clarke, Harry S

    2006-05-01

    Accreditation organizations, financial stakeholders, legal systems, and regulatory agencies have increased the need for accountability in educational processes and curricular outcomes of graduate medical education. This demand for greater programmatic monitoring has placed pressure on institutions with graduate medical education (GME) programs to develop greater oversight of these programs. Meeting these challenges requires development of new GME management strategies and tools for institutional GME administrators to scrutinize programs, while still allowing these programs the autonomy to develop and implement educational methods to meet their unique training needs. At the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC), senior administrators in the college of medicine felt electronic information management was a critical strategy for success and thus proceeded to carefully select an electronic residency management system (ERMS) to provide functionality for both individual programs and the GME enterprise as a whole. Initial plans in 2002 for a phased deployment had to be changed to a much more rapid deployment due to regulatory issues. Extensive communication and cooperation among MUSC's GME leaders resulted in a successful deployment in 2003. Evaluation completion rates have substantially improved, duty hours are carefully monitored, patient safety has improved through more careful oversight of residents' procedural privileges, regulators have been pleased, and central GME administrative visibility of program performance has dramatically improved. The system is now being expanded to MUSC's medical school and other health professions colleges. The authors discuss lessons learned and opportunities and challenges ahead, which include improving tracking of development of procedural competency, establishing and monitoring program performance standards, and integrating the ERMS with GME reimbursement systems.

  20. Strategies for improving productivity of small ruminants in Tanzania

    OpenAIRE

    Safari, John Godfrey

    2010-01-01

    This thesis presents three areas of emphasis, all related to feeds, feeding and performance of small ruminants. The first area (Paper I) focuses on seasonality and its effect on chemical composition of forage species most preferred by SEA goats, grazing behaviour and performance of goats as assessed in the rainy (February-May), mid dry (July-August) and late dry seasons (October-November). Evaluation of these forages showed a marked decline in quality as the season changed from rainy to dry. ...

  1. Strategies for improving safety performance in construction firms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alarcón, Luis Fernando; Acuña, Diego; Diethelm, Sven; Pellicer, Eugenio

    2016-09-01

    Over the years many prevention management practices have been implemented to prevent and mitigate accidents at the construction site. However, there is little evidence of the effectiveness of individual or combined practices used by companies to manage occupational health and safety issues. The authors selected a sample of 1180 construction firms and 221 individual practices applied in these companies to analyze their effectiveness reducing injury rates over a period of four years in Chile. Different methods were used to study this massive database including: visual analyses of graphical information, statistical analyses and classification techniques. Results showed that practices related to safety incentives and rewards are the most effective from the accident rate viewpoint, even though they are seldom used by companies; on the other hand, practices related to accidents and incidents investigation had a slight negative impact on the accident rate because they are frequently used as a reactive measure. In general, the higher the percentage of prevention practices implemented in a strategy, the lower the accident rate. However, the analysis of the combined effect of prevention practices indicated that the choice of the right combination of practices was more important than just the number of practices implemented. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Gene transfer strategies for improving radiolabeled peptide imaging and therapy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rogers, B.E.; Buchsbaum, D.J. [Birmingham University of Alabama, Birmingham, AL (United States). Dept. of Radiation Oncology; Zinn, K.R. [Birmingham University of Alabama, Birmingham, AL (United States). Radiology

    2000-09-01

    Utilization of molecular biology techniques offers attractive options in nuclear medicine for improving cancer imaging and therapy with radiolabeled peptides. Two of these options include utilization of phage-panning to identify novel tumor specific peptides or single chain antibodies and gene transfer techniques to increase the antibodies and gene transfer techniques to increase the number of antigen/receptor sites expressed on malignant cells. The group has focused on the latter approach for improving radiolabeled peptide imaging and therapy. The most widely used gene transfer vectors in clinical gene therapy trials include retrovirus, cationic lipids and adenovirus. It has been utilized adenovirus vectors for gene transfer because of their ability to accomplish efficient in vivo gene transfer. Adenovirus vectors encoding the genes for a variety of antigens/receptors (carcinoembryonic antigen, gastrin-releasing peptide receptor, somatostatin receptor subtype 2 (SSTr2)) have all shown that their expression is increased on cancer cells both in vitro and in vivo following adenovirus infection. Of particular interest has been the adenovirus encoding for SSTr2 (AdCMVSSTr2). Various radioisotopes have been attached to somatostatin analogues for imaging and therapy of SSTr2-positive tumors both clinically and in animal models. The use of these analogues in combination with AdCMVSSTr2 is a promising approach for improving the detection sensitivity and therapeutic efficacy of these radiolabeled peptides against solid tumors. In addition, it has been proposed the use of SSTr2 as a marker for imaging the expression of another cancer therapeutic trans gene (e.g., cytosine deaminase, thymidine kinase) encoded within the same vector. This would allow for non-invasive monitoring of gene delivery to tumor sites.

  3. Instructional strategies to improve women's attitudes toward science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newbill, Phyllis Leary

    Although negative attitudes toward science are common among women and men in undergraduate introductory science classes, women's attitudes toward science tend to be more negative than men's. The reasons for women's negative attitudes toward science include lack of self-confidence, fear of association with social outcasts, lack of women role models in science, and the fundamental differences between traditional scientific and feminist values. Attitudes are psychological constructs theorized to be composed of emotional, cognitive, and behavioral components. Attitudes serve functions, including social expressive, value expressive, utilitarian, and defensive functions, for the people who hold them. To change attitudes, the new attitudes must serve the same function as the old one, and all three components must be treated. Instructional designers can create instructional environments to effect attitude change. In designing instruction to improve women's attitudes toward science, instructional designers should (a) address the emotions that are associated with existing attitudes, (b) involve credible, attractive women role models, and (c) address the functions of the existing attitudes. Two experimental instructional modules were developed based on these recommendations, and two control modules were developed that were not based on these recommendations. The asynchronous, web-based modules were administered to 281 undergraduate geology and chemistry students at two universities. Attitude assessment revealed that attitudes toward scientists improved significantly more in the experimental group, although there was no significant difference in overall attitudes toward science. Women's attitudes improved significantly more than men's in both the experimental and control groups. Students whose attitudes changed wrote significantly more in journaling activities associated with the modules. Qualitative analysis of journals revealed that the guidelines worked exactly as predicted

  4. Evaluating PK-12 Professional Learning Communities: An Improvement Science Perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woodland, Rebecca H.

    2016-01-01

    Professional learning communities (PLCs) have emerged as one of the nation's most widely implemented strategies for improving instruction and PK-12 student learning outcomes. PLCs are predicated on the principles of improvement science, a type of evidenced-based collective inquiry that aims to bridge the research-practice divide and increase…

  5. Quality improvement, implementation, and dissemination strategies to improve mental health care for children and adolescents: a systematic review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forman-Hoffman, Valerie L; Middleton, Jennifer Cook; McKeeman, Joni L; Stambaugh, Leyla F; Christian, Robert B; Gaynes, Bradley N; Kane, Heather Lynne; Kahwati, Leila C; Lohr, Kathleen N; Viswanathan, Meera

    2017-07-24

    Some outcomes for children with mental health problems remain suboptimal because of poor access to care and the failure of systems and providers to adopt established quality improvement strategies and interventions with proven effectiveness. This review had three goals: (1) assess the effectiveness of quality improvement, implementation, and dissemination strategies intended to improve the mental health care of children and adolescents; (2) examine harms associated with these strategies; and (3) determine whether effectiveness or harms differ for subgroups based on system, organizational, practitioner, or patient characteristics. Sources included MEDLINE®, the Cochrane Library, PsycINFO, and CINAHL, from database inception through February 17, 2017. Additional sources included gray literature, additional studies from reference lists, and technical experts. Two reviewers selected relevant randomized controlled trials (RCTs) and observational studies, extracted data, and assessed risk of bias. Dual analysis, synthesis, and grading of the strength of evidence for each outcome followed for studies meeting inclusion criteria. We also used qualitative comparative analysis to examine relationships between combinations of strategy components and improvements in outcomes. We identified 18 strategies described in 19 studies. Eleven strategies significantly improved at least one measure of intermediate outcomes, final health outcomes, or resource use. Moderate strength of evidence (from one RCT) supported using provider financial incentives such as pay for performance to improve the competence with which practitioners can implement evidence-based practices (EBPs). We found inconsistent evidence involving strategies with educational meetings, materials, and outreach; programs appeared to be successful in combination with reminders or providing practitioners with newly collected clinical information. We also found low strength of evidence for no benefit for initiatives that

  6. Coating Strategies to Improve Lithium-ion Battery Safety

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Travis, Jonathan [Sandia National Laboratories (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Orendorff, Christopher J. [Sandia National Laboratories (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)

    2015-09-01

    This work investigated the effects of Al2O3 ALD coatings on the performance and thermal abuse tolerance of graphite based anodes and Li(NixMnyCoz)O2 (NMC) based cathodes. It was found that 5 cycles of Al2O3 ALD on the graphite anode increased the onset temperature of thermal runaway by approximately 20 °C and drastically reduced the anode’s contribution to the overall amount of heat released during thermal runaway. Although Al2O3 ALD improves the cycling stability of NMC based cathodes, the thermal abuse tolerance was not greatly improved. A series of conductive aluminum oxide/carbon composites were created and characterized as potential thicker protective coatings for use on NMC based cathode materials. A series of electrodes were coated with manganese monoxide ALD to test the efficacy of an oxygen scavenging coating on NMC based cathodes.

  7. Improving Student Vocabulary Mastery Using Word Mapping Strategy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Satuna Indah Wardani

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract: The purpose of this study was to find out whether the word mapping strategywas able to improve the students’ vocabulary mastery. The process of masteringis mainly affected by the worst thought of the vocational students who said that English as the most difficult subject to learn and was often tracked into boringcondition since theywere not involved in the process of learning. Thisstudy was conducted by using classroom action research in two cycles and each cycleconsisted of four meetings. The subject of the research was the third grade of Accounting Department at State Vocational School 1 Pamekasan whichconsisted of 34 students. The research was carried out for one month.Theinstruments used to obtained primary data and the secondary data were vocabulary test, the students’ observation sheets, and questionnaire of the respondent.The result of test in preliminary until the test in cycle two showed that there was the improvement of the number of students who passed the test. Hopefully, this outcome will certainly be useful for both teachers and students in which its harmony will give the progress for learning English,especially vocabulary mastery. 

  8. Improved district heating substation efficiency with a new control strategy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gustafsson, Jonas; Delsing, Jerker; van Deventer, Jan [Div. of EISLAB, Dept. of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering, Luleaa University of Technology, 97187 Luleaa (Sweden)

    2010-06-15

    In this paper, we describe a new alternative control approach for indirectly connected district heating substations. Simulations results showed that the new approach results in an increased {delta} T across the substation. Results were obtained for both ideal and non-ideal operation of the system, meaning that less water must be pumped through the district heating network, and a higher overall fuel efficiency can be obtained in the district heating power plants. When a higher fuel efficiency is achieved, the usage of primary fuel sources can be reduced. Improved efficiency also increases the effective heat transfer capacity of a district heating network, allowing more customers to be connected to an existing network without increasing the heating plant or network capacity. Also, if combined heat and power plants are used to produce the heat, the increased {delta} T will result in a further improved overall fuel efficiency, as more electricity can be produced with colder cooling water. The idea behind the new control method is to consider the temperature of the water supplying the district heating substation with heat, often referred to as the primary supply temperature. This represents a logical next step, as currently, the only parameter generally taken into account or measured when controlling the temperature level of the radiator circuit is the local outdoor temperature. In this paper we show how the primary supply temperature together with thermodynamic knowledge of the building can be used to maximize the {delta} T across the district heating substation. (author)

  9. Virtual strategies to improve transversal competences, using wikis in a collaborative work

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guinau, Marta; Playa, Elisabet

    2016-04-01

    A major educational aim in university degrees since the implementation of the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS) on the European universities is the work based on transversal competences. However, the first course students arrive at the Spanish universities with important deficiencies on some of these competences, especially regarding on oral and written expression, time management and collaborative work. The experience of the teachers involved in this work has revealed the coordination difficulty between the students to work in group, important deficiencies on information management and the stress caused by the oral presentations. The results presented here correspond to a teaching innovation project. It is based on: a) the development of works in groups of 3 or 4 students, proposed as flipped classrooms strategy and b) the implementation of a virtual tool (a wiki). This tool helps the students with scientific information management and facilitates the access of all the students belonging to the work group at the information provided by colleagues. The wiki also improves the monitoring and evaluation of the work and contributions of each student by teachers. Each group must develop a topic related to the subject - General Geology and Geochemistry - that the group chose from a list of earth sciences topics proposed by teachers. The resulting works are presented in poster and oral presentations (10 min. per group and 5 min. for questions). Each work is evaluated by teachers using the evidences provided on the wiki and by means of evaluation guides. Moreover, the students must self and co-evaluate the presented works. The implementation of this project has provided information to analyze the impact of these strategies and to quantify it in terms of 'Learning Analytics'.

  10. Evaluating the feature comparison strategy for forensic face identification.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Towler, Alice; White, David; Kemp, Richard I

    2017-03-01

    Face recognition is thought to rely on representations that encode holistic properties. Paradoxically, professional forensic examiners who identify unfamiliar faces by comparing facial images are trained to adopt a feature-by-feature comparison strategy. Here we tested the effectiveness of this strategy by asking participants to rate facial feature similarity prior to making same/different identity decisions to pairs of face images. Experiment 1 provided preliminary evidence that rating feature similarity improves unfamiliar face matching accuracy in novice participants. In Experiment 2, we found benefits of this procedure over and above rating similarity of personality traits and image quality parameters, suggesting that benefits are not solely attributable to general increases in attention. In Experiment 3, we then compared performance of trained forensic facial image examiners to novice participants, and found that examiners displayed: i) superior face matching accuracy; ii) smaller face inversion and feature inversion effects; and iii) feature ratings that were more diagnostic of identity. Further, aggregating feature ratings of multiple examiners produced perfect identity discrimination. Based on these quantitative and qualitative differences between experts and novices, we conclude that comparison based on local features confers specific benefits to trained forensic examiners. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2017 APA, all rights reserved).

  11. Strategies for improving participation in diabetes education. A qualitative study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schäfer, Ingmar; Pawels, Marc; Küver, Claudia; Pohontsch, Nadine Janis; Scherer, Martin; van den Bussche, Hendrik; Kaduszkiewicz, Hanna

    2014-01-01

    Diabetes mellitus is highly prevalent and can lead to serious complications and mortality. Patient education can help to avoid negative outcomes, but up to half of the patients do not participate. The aim of this study was to analyze patients' attitudes towards diabetes education in order to identify barriers to participation and develop strategies for better patient education. We conducted a qualitative study. Seven GP practices were purposively selected based on socio-demographic data of city districts in Hamburg, Germany. Study participants were selected by their GPs in order to increase participation. Semi-structured face-to-face interviews were conducted with 14 patients. Interviews were audiotaped and transcribed verbatim. The sample size was determined by data saturation. Data were analysed by qualitative content analysis. Categories were determined deductively and inductively. The interviews yielded four types of barriers: 1) Statements and behaviour of the attending physician influence the patients' decisions about diabetes education. 2) Both, a good state of health related to diabetes and physical/psychosocial comorbidity can be reasons for non-participation. 3) Manifold motivational factors were discussed. They ranged from giving low priority to diabetes to avoidance of implications of diabetes education as being confronted with illness narratives of others. 4) Barriers also include aspects of the patients' knowledge and activity. First, physicians should encourage patients to participate in diabetes education and argue that they can profit even if actual treatment and examination results are promising. Second, patients with other priorities, psychic comorbidity or functional limitations might profit more from continuous individualized education adapted to their specific situation instead of group education. Third, it might be justified that patients do not participate in diabetes education if they have slightly increased blood sugar values only and no

  12. Evaluating strategies to normalise biological replicates of Western blot data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Degasperi, Andrea; Birtwistle, Marc R; Volinsky, Natalia; Rauch, Jens; Kolch, Walter; Kholodenko, Boris N

    2014-01-01

    Western blot data are widely used in quantitative applications such as statistical testing and mathematical modelling. To ensure accurate quantitation and comparability between experiments, Western blot replicates must be normalised, but it is unclear how the available methods affect statistical properties of the data. Here we evaluate three commonly used normalisation strategies: (i) by fixed normalisation point or control; (ii) by sum of all data points in a replicate; and (iii) by optimal alignment of the replicates. We consider how these different strategies affect the coefficient of variation (CV) and the results of hypothesis testing with the normalised data. Normalisation by fixed point tends to increase the mean CV of normalised data in a manner that naturally depends on the choice of the normalisation point. Thus, in the context of hypothesis testing, normalisation by fixed point reduces false positives and increases false negatives. Analysis of published experimental data shows that choosing normalisation points with low quantified intensities results in a high normalised data CV and should thus be avoided. Normalisation by sum or by optimal alignment redistributes the raw data uncertainty in a mean-dependent manner, reducing the CV of high intensity points and increasing the CV of low intensity points. This causes the effect of normalisations by sum or optimal alignment on hypothesis testing to depend on the mean of the data tested; for high intensity points, false positives are increased and false negatives are decreased, while for low intensity points, false positives are decreased and false negatives are increased. These results will aid users of Western blotting to choose a suitable normalisation strategy and also understand the implications of this normalisation for subsequent hypothesis testing.

  13. IMPROVEMENT OF MANGOSTEEN FARMING AND POSTHARVEST HANDLING STRATEGIES BASED ON GLOBAL GAP STANDARD AT KIARA PEDES, PURWAKARTA DISTRICT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nanda Erlangga

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available The objectives of this research were (1 to determine the value chain of mangosteen at Kiara Pedes Sub district, Purwakarta District, (2 to identify the gap between actual condition at Kiara Pedes and Global GAP standard, (3 to identify internal and external factors that can affect the implementation strategy of Global GAP standards, and (4 to develop alternative strategies that can be applied to improve the system of mangosteen cultivation and post harvest handling based on Global GAP standards. The analytical tools being used in this study were value chain analysis, gap analysis, internal and external factor evaluation (IFE, EFE, IE matrix, SWOT analysis, and quantitative strategic planning matrix (QSPM. Identified primary actors in mangosteen value chain were farmers, middlemen, suppliers, exporters, and local and overseas retailers. Based on IE Matrix and SWOT analysis, the strategies to implement Global GAP standards were (a to increase mangosteen productivity and improve its quality by using developed cultivation and postharvest technology, (b to increase productivity, and improve quality and transportation network in accordance with Global GAP standard, (c to improve clean water and post-harvest infrastructure through cooperation with exporters and financial institutions, and (d to improve warehouse and supporting facilities such as packaging and sanitation according to the Global GAP standard for minimizing the environmental constraints. The most priority strategies from the QSPM analysis were improving clean water and post-harvest infrastructure through cooperation with exporters and financial institutions, followed by using the developed cultivation and postharvest technology to increase mangosteen productivity and improve its quality.Keywords: Mangosteen, Global GAP Standard, Value Chain, Improvement Strategies, Farming and Postharvest Handling Practices

  14. Barriers and strategies to improve influenza vaccination in Pakistan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farrukh, Muhammad Junaid; Ming, Long Chiau; Zaidi, Syed Tabish Razi; Khan, Tahir Mehmood

    2017-02-06

    Influenza vaccination is strongly recommended by World Health Organisation on a yearly basis. The rate of immunization in Pakistan is suboptimal. High cost, traditional norms, customs and low levels of education in Pakistan are preventing people from getting vaccinated. It is timely to include influenza vaccination in the expanded programme on immunization (EPI), which is a disease prevention programme aiming to eradicate preventable diseases through subsidized or free immunization. The Ministry of National Health Services, Regulation and Coordination, Government of Pakistan should launch a national influenza vaccine policy in view of this current situation and oversee its implementation. Healthcare professionals should promote influenza vaccination and focus on high risk groups such as the elderly, pregnant women and children. Convincing and educating family members regarding immunization of pregnant women and follow-up with parents regarding a second influenza shot for their children will further improve vaccination rates in Pakistan. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  15. Mobile health applications: the patchwork of legal and liability issues suggests strategies to improve oversight.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Y Tony; Silverman, Ross D

    2014-02-01

    Mobile health (mHealth) technology has facilitated the transition of care beyond the traditional hospital setting to the homes of patients. Yet few studies have evaluated the legal implications of the expansion of mHealth applications, or "apps." Such apps are affected by a patchwork of policies related to medical licensure, privacy and security protection, and malpractice liability. For example, the privacy protections of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) of 1996 may apply to only some uses of the apps. Similarly, it is not clear what a doctor's malpractice liability would be if he or she injured a patient as the result of inaccurate information supplied by the patient's self-monitoring health app. This article examines the legal issues related to the oversight of health apps, discusses current federal regulations, and suggests strategies to improve the oversight of these apps.

  16. The Risk-Stratified Osteoporosis Strategy Evaluation study (ROSE)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rubin, Katrine Hass; Holmberg, Teresa; Rothmann, Mette Juel

    2015-01-01

    The risk-stratified osteoporosis strategy evaluation study (ROSE) is a randomized prospective population-based study investigating the effectiveness of a two-step screening program for osteoporosis in women. This paper reports the study design and baseline characteristics of the study population....... 35,000 women aged 65-80 years were selected at random from the population in the Region of Southern Denmark and-before inclusion-randomized to either a screening group or a control group. As first step, a self-administered questionnaire regarding risk factors for osteoporosis based on FRAX......(®) was issued to both groups. As second step, subjects in the screening group with a 10-year probability of major osteoporotic fractures ≥15 % were offered a DXA scan. Patients diagnosed with osteoporosis from the DXA scan were advised to see their GP and discuss pharmaceutical treatment according to Danish...

  17. Prediction of performance and evaluation of flexible pavement rehabilitation strategies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kang-Won Wayne Lee

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Five test sections with different additives and strategies were established to rehabilitate a State-maintained highway more effectively in Rhode Island (RI: control, calcium chloride, asphalt emulsion, Portland cement and geogrid. Resilient moduli of subgrade soils and subbase materials before and after full depth rehabilitation were employed as input parameters to predict the performance of pavement structures using AASHTOWare Pavement ME Design (Pavement ME software in terms of rutting, cracking and roughness. It was attempted to use Level 1 input (which includes traffic full spectrum data, climate data and structural layer properties for Pavement ME. Traffic data was obtained from a Weigh-in-Motion (WIM instrument and Providence station was used for collecting climatic data. Volumetric properties, dynamic modulus and creep compliance were used as input parameters for 19 mm (0.75 in. warm mix asphalt (WMA base and 12.5 mm (0.5 in. WMA surface layer. The results indicated that all test sections observed AC top-down (longitudinal cracking except Portland cement section which passed for all criteria. The order in terms of performance (best to worst for all test sections by Pavement ME was Portland cement, calcium chloride, control, geogrid, and asphalt emulsion. It was also observed that all test sections passed for both bottom up and top down fatigue cracking by increasing thickness of either of the two top asphalt layers. Test sections with five different base/subbase materials were evaluated in last two years through visual condition survey and measurements of deflection and roughness to confirm the prediction, but there was no serious distress and roughness. Thus these experiments allowed selecting the best rehabilitation/reconstruction techniques for the particular and/or similar highway, and a framework was formulated to select an optimal technique and/or strategy for future rehabilitation/reconstruction projects. Finally, guidelines for

  18. EVALUATION OF COMPETITIVE STRATEGIES OF COFFEE RETAILING IN ASPECT OF MARKET ECONOMY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aslı ÖZTOPÇU

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Coffee retailers are trying to improve both their products and services and to increase their market share. Companies are both competing and developing different strategies such as issues production, R&D, business model, customers, and innovations. The aim of this study is to determine the competitive strategies in the coffee retailing aspect of the market economy. For this purpose, firstly, in this sector, the major competitors, suppliers, and customers were researched and the general structure of the sector was determined. Secondly, size of the global market, industry, and demand growth rate and the future status of the coffee retail industry were determined. Finally, the bargaining power of customers and suppliers of the sector were evaluated. According to the evaluation obtained, it was understood that coffee retailing is an attractive, large and dynamic sector. In the analysis according to the study of Porter’s five force model, important information was obtained for coffee retailing.

  19. Evaluation of educational strategy, grounded on problem-based learning on nursing undergraduate

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miriam Fernanda Sanches Alarcon

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Objective: to compare the performance of student ́s learning from evaluations of the method Problem-Based Learning and the Traditional method, in a discipline of undergraduate Nursing. Methods: an experimental study, performed with 16 students of the Degree course in Nursing. The experimental group was submitted to the educational strategy grounded on Problem-Based Learning and the control group to Traditional education. Cognitive Assessment Exercise evaluations were performed and traditional assessments for the two groups. Results: students in the experimental group showed better performance when compared to students from the traditional method. Conclusion: there was a positive influence on the strategy implemented for learning in Nursing, such as improved of critical thinking, knowledge construction.

  20. Evaluation of educational strategy, grounded on problem-based learning on nursing undergraduate

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miriam Fernanda Sanches Alarcon

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Objective: to compare the performance of student´s learning from evaluations of the method Problem-Based Learning and the Traditional method, in a discipline of undergraduate Nursing. Methods: an experimental study, performed with 16 students of the Degree course in Nursing. The experimental group was submitted to the educational strategy grounded on Problem-Based Learning and the control group to Traditional education. Cognitive Assessment Exercise evaluations were performed and traditional assessments for the two groups. Results: students in the experimental group showed better performance when compared to students from the traditional method. Conclusion: there was a positive influence on the strategy implemented for learning in Nursing, such as improved of critical thinking, knowledge construction.

  1. Strategies for improving the early diagnosis of keratoconus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shi Y

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Yue Shi Doheny Eye Institute, Department of Ophthalmology, David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California at Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA, USA Abstract: To diagnose keratoconus at its earliest stage is meaningful in order to avoid refractive surgery in the eye, which may lead to further damage in the abnormal cornea structure and consequently cause iatrogenic ectasia. In this article, the following aspects of detecting earliest stage of keratoconus were reviewed: 1 nomenclature of the earliest forms of keratoconus; 2 diagnosis of keratoconus using curvature-based topography (also known as Placido-based topography, ie, videokeratography as a traditional method and elevation-based topography as a new method which has gained popularity in recent years; and 3 other methods analyzing keratoconus cornea like corneal biomechanics and wavefront sensing. Elevation-based topography using either Scheimpflug imaging techniques or slit-scanning imaging techniques has shown to be advantageous over the curvature-based topography in detecting keratoconus at its earliest stage. Posterior elevation of the cornea is notified to enhance the sensitivity and specificity of detection if used along with the measurements of anterior surface of the cornea. Cornea biomechanics analysis and wavefront sensing also revealed differences between normal eyes and keratoconic eyes in their earliest stage. Combining the latest technology and the traditional techniques will be the future trend to improve early diagnosis of keratoconus. Keywords: keratoconus, early diagnosis, Scheimpflug imaging, slit-scanning imaging, wavefront error, corneal biomechanics

  2. Learning to Walk, Walking to Learn: Reconsidering the Walkthrough as an Improvement Strategy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lemons, Richard W.; Helsing, Deborah

    2009-01-01

    School leaders desperate for strategies that will improve student learning have often opted to embrace strategies that they have observed being used successfully in other districts. Sometimes, this works; sometimes, it does not. This article presents two vignettes about districts that made similar decisions to implement learning walks. The…

  3. Strategies for Improving the Social Integration of Children with Asperger Syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Attwood, Tony

    2000-01-01

    Discussion of strategies for improving the social integration of children with Asperger syndrome covers characteristic difficulties in social integration and specific strategies, such as providing opportunities to interact with normal children, providing knowledge of the nature of Asperger syndrome, teaching theory of mind skills, use of social…

  4. Management of Ghana’s modified taungya system : Challenges and strategies for improvement

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Acheampong, E.; Insaidoo, T.F.G.; Ros-Tonen, M.A.F.

    2016-01-01

    Since 2001, Ghana has introduced a number of forest-based strategies to improve the livelihoods of forest communities, restore the country’s forest cover and address timber deficits. Among these strategies is the modified taungya system (MTS). Through a mix of qualitative methods, field

  5. Joyful learning strategy using game method of treasure clue to improve reading comprehension skill

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Vina Anggia Nastitie Ariawan; Inne Marthyane Pratiwi

    2017-01-01

    The objectives of this research are (1) to describe steps in the implementation of joyful learning strategy using game method of treasure clue to improve reading comprehension skill for the fourth grade students of elementary school; (2...

  6. Long-term persistence of quality improvements for an intensive care unit communication initiative using the VALUE strategy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wysham, Nicholas G; Mularski, Richard A; Schmidt, David M; Nord, Shirley C; Louis, Deborah L; Shuster, Elizabeth; Curtis, J Randall; Mosen, David M

    2014-06-01

    Communication in the intensive care unit (ICU) is an important component of quality ICU care. In this report, we evaluate the long-term effects of a quality improvement (QI) initiative, based on the VALUE communication strategy, designed to improve communication with family members of critically ill patients. We implemented a multifaceted intervention to improve communication in the ICU and measured processes of care. Quality improvement components included posted VALUE placards, templated progress note inclusive of communication documentation, and a daily rounding checklist prompt. We evaluated care for all patients cared for by the intensivists during three separate 3 week periods, pre, post, and 3 years following the initial intervention. Care delivery was assessed in 38 patients and their families in the pre-intervention sample, 27 in the post-intervention period, and 41 in follow-up. Process measures of communication showed improvement across the evaluation periods, for example, daily updates increased from pre 62% to post 76% to current 84% of opportunities. Our evaluation of this quality improvement project suggests persistence and continued improvements in the delivery of measured aspects of ICU family communication. Maintenance with point-of-care-tools may account for some of the persistence and continued improvements. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Strategies and Exemplars for Public Outreach Events: Planning, Implementation, Evaluation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cobb, W. H.; Buxner, S.; Shipp, S. S.; Shebby, S.

    2015-12-01

    IntroductionEach year the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) sponsors a variety of public outreach events to share information with educators, students, and the general public. These events are designed to increase interest in and awareness of the mission and goals of NASA. Planning and implementation best practices gleaned from the NASA SMD Education's review of large-scale events, "Best Practices in Outreach Events" will be shared. Outcomes from an event, i C Ceres, celebrating the Dawn mission's arrival at dwarf planet Ceres that utilized these strategies will be shared. Best practices included can be pertinent for all event organizers and evaluators regardless of event size. BackgroundThe literature review focused on identifying evaluations of large-scale public outreach events—and, within these evaluations, identifying best practices. The following criteria for identifying journal articles and reports to potentially include: Public, science-related events open to adults and children. Events with more than 1,000 attendees. Events that occurred during the last 5 years. Evaluations that included information on data collected from visitors and/or volunteers. Evaluations that specified the type of data collected, methodology, and associated results. Planning and Implementation Best PracticesThe literature review revealed key considerations for planning and of large-scale events implementing events. A summary of related best practices is presented below. 1) Advertise the event 2) Use and advertise access to scientists 3) Recruit scientists using these findings 4) Ensure that the event is group and particularly child friendly 5) Target specific event outcomes Best Practices Informing Real-world Planning, Implementation and EvaluationDawn mission's collaborative design of a series of events, i C Ceres, including in-person, interactive events geared to families and live presentations will be shared. Outcomes and lessons learned will be imparted

  8. Interobserver Reliability of the Berlin ARDS Definition and Strategies to Improve the Reliability of ARDS Diagnosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sjoding, Michael W; Hofer, Timothy P; Co, Ivan; Courey, Anthony; Cooke, Colin R; Iwashyna, Theodore J

    2017-12-14

    Failure to reliably diagnose ARDS may be a major driver of negative clinical trials and underrecognition and treatment in clinical practice. We sought to examine the interobserver reliability of the Berlin ARDS definition and examine strategies for improving the reliability of ARDS diagnosis. Two hundred five patients with hypoxic respiratory failure from four ICUs were reviewed independently by three clinicians, who evaluated whether patients had ARDS, the diagnostic confidence of the reviewers, whether patients met individual ARDS criteria, and the time when criteria were met. Interobserver reliability of an ARDS diagnosis was "moderate" (kappa = 0.50; 95% CI, 0.40-0.59). Sixty-seven percent of diagnostic disagreements between clinicians reviewing the same patient was explained by differences in how chest imaging studies were interpreted, with other ARDS criteria contributing less (identification of ARDS risk factor, 15%; cardiac edema/volume overload exclusion, 7%). Combining the independent reviews of three clinicians can increase reliability to "substantial" (kappa = 0.75; 95% CI, 0.68-0.80). When a clinician diagnosed ARDS with "high confidence," all other clinicians agreed with the diagnosis in 72% of reviews. There was close agreement between clinicians about the time when a patient met all ARDS criteria if ARDS developed within the first 48 hours of hospitalization (median difference, 5 hours). The reliability of the Berlin ARDS definition is moderate, driven primarily by differences in chest imaging interpretation. Combining independent reviews by multiple clinicians or improving methods to identify bilateral infiltrates on chest imaging are important strategies for improving the reliability of ARDS diagnosis. Copyright © 2017 American College of Chest Physicians. All rights reserved.

  9. Improving Grade XI Students' Writing Achievement in Analytical Exposition Through Collaborative Writing Strategy

    OpenAIRE

    Sidauruk, Sri Lestari; Arifin, Tina Mariany

    2014-01-01

    This study was focused on the improvement of Grade XI students' writing achievement in analytical exposition through the application of collaborative writing strategy. The objective of this study was to find out whether collaborative writing strategy could improve Grade XI students' writing achievement in analytical exposition text. The study was conducted by using Classroom Action Research (CAR). The subjects of this study were students of Grade XI Class 2 of State Senior High School (Sekola...

  10. Improving test ordering in primary care: the added value of a small-group quality improvement strategy compared with classic feedback only.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verstappen, Wim H J M; van der Weijden, Trudy; Dubois, Willy I; Smeele, Ivo; Hermsen, Jan; Tan, Frans E S; Grol, Richard P T M

    2004-01-01

    We wanted to evaluate the added value of small peer-group quality improvement meetings compared with simple feedback as a strategy to improve test-ordering behavior. Numbers of tests ordered by primary care physicians are increasing, and many of these tests seem to be unnecessary according to established, evidence-based guidelines. We enrolled 194 primary care physicians from 27 local primary care practice groups in 5 health care regions (5 diagnostic centers). The study was a cluster randomized trial with randomization at the local physician group level. We evaluated an innovative, multifaceted strategy, combining written comparative feedback, group education on national guidelines, and social influence by peers in quality improvement sessions in small groups. The strategy was aimed at 3 specific clinical topics: cardiovascular issues, upper abdominal complaints, and lower abdominal complaints. The mean number of tests per physician per 6 months at baseline and the physicians' region were used as independent variables, and the mean number of tests per physician per 6 months was the dependent variable. The new strategy was executed in 13 primary care groups, whereas 14 groups received feedback only. For all 3 clinical topics, the decrease in mean total number of tests ordered by physicians in the intervention arm was far more substantial (on average 51 fewer tests per physician per half-year) than the decrease in mean number of tests ordered by physicians in the feedback arm (P = .005). Five tests considered to be inappropriate for the clinical problem of upper abdominal complaints decreased in the intervention arm, with physicians in the feedback arm ordering 13 more tests per 6 months (P = .002). Interdoctor variation in test ordering decreased more in the intervention arm. Compared with only disseminating comparative feedback reports to primary care physicians, the new strategy of involving peer interaction and social influence improved the physicians' test

  11. Strategies for selecting recombinant CHO cell lines for cGMP manufacturing: improving the efficiency of cell line generation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Porter, Alison J; Racher, Andrew J; Preziosi, Richard; Dickson, Alan J

    2010-01-01

    Transfectants with a wide range of cellular phenotypes are obtained during the process of cell line generation. For the successful manufacture of a therapeutic protein, a means is required to identify a cell line with desirable growth and productivity characteristics from this phenotypically wide-ranging transfectant population. This identification process is on the critical path for first-in-human studies. We have stringently examined a typical selection strategy used to isolate cell lines suitable for cGMP manufacturing. One-hundred and seventy-five transfectants were evaluated as they progressed through the different assessment stages of the selection strategy. High producing cell lines, suitable for cGMP manufacturing, were identified. However, our analyses showed that the frequency of isolation of the highest producing cell lines was low and that ranking positions were not consistent between each assessment stage, suggesting that there is potential to improve upon the strategy. Attempts to increase the frequency of isolation of the 10 highest producing cell lines, by in silico analysis of alternative selection strategies, were unsuccessful. We identified alternative strategies with similar predictive capabilities to the typical selection strategy. One alternate strategy required fewer cell lines to be progressed at the assessment stages but the stochastic nature of the models means that cell line numbers are likely to change between programs. In summary, our studies illuminate the potential for improvement to this and future selection strategies, based around use of assessments that are more informative or that reduce variance, paving the way to improved efficiency of generation of manufacturing cell lines. © 2010 American Institute of Chemical Engineers

  12. Evaluation of Nanoclay Exfoliation Strategies for Thermoset Polyimide Nanocomposite Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ginter, Michael J.; Jana, Sadhan C.; Miller, Sandi G.

    2007-01-01

    Prior works show exfoliated layered silicate reinforcement improves polymer composite properties. However, achieving full clay exfoliation in high performance thermoset polyimides remains a challenge. This study explores a new method of clay exfoliation, which includes clay intercalation by lower molecular weight PMR monomer under conditions of low and high shear and sonication, clay treatments by aliphatic and aromatic surfactants, and clay dispersion in primary, higher molecular weight PMR resin. Clay spacing, thermal, and mechanical properties were evaluated and compared with the best results available in literature for PMR polyimide systems.

  13. Location decision strategies for improving SMME business performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shereen Barnard

    2011-12-01

    relationship between electricity tariffs and business performance. Employment and business performance attained the strongest positive relationship; indicating that business owners regarded employment as an important factor to consider when searching for suitable business premises. The relationship between location and business performance obtained the lowest positive correlation. Originality and value of the research: Research on South African SMMEs regarding location decisions and the specific factors identified in this study has not been done previously in South Africa. Therefore, because evidence exists that the macro-environmental factors influence location decisions to varying degrees, this study can provide SMME owners with insight into the factors influencing location choice. It is vital that business owners consider these factors as they could influence business performance, and ultimately, business survival. An increased awareness of the importance of the aspects discussed in this study could consequently lead to improved performance in the SMME sector.

  14. Concept mapping: an educational strategy to improve graduate nurses' critical thinking skills during a hospital orientation program.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilgis, Michele; McConnell, Joy

    2008-03-01

    Novice graduate nurses (GNs) are often deficient in the critical thinking skills needed to assess and handle patient problems and life-threatening situations. Concept mapping is an effective teaching strategy for developing critical thinking and clinical decision-making skills. This small descriptive comparison study was undertaken to determine whether concept mapping improved critical thinking skills in GNs during a hospital orientation program. Schuster's (2002) Concept Map Care Plan Evaluation Tool was adapted to measure GNs' critical thinking in concept maps based on case studies at the beginning and end of orientation. A paired t test was computed on pre- and post-mean map scores of 14.071 and 16.428, respectively. Concept mapping was a valuable teaching and evaluation strategy for this group that could be used by nursing educators to improve critical thinking and identify and correct areas of theoretical and clinical deficiency.

  15. A TOTAL MANUFACTURING SOLUTIONS TECHNIQUE TO SELECT APPROPRIATE IMPROVEMENT STRATEGY: CASE STUDY OF A FOOTWEAR FACTORY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gezahegn Tesfaye

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available The Government of Ethiopia is promoting the manufacturing sector to join the global market in a large scale. Due to its comparative advantages, the Ethiopian leather and leather products industry have been given due attention. To fully utilize such advantages, the country shifted its export items from hides/skins to footwear products. Nevertheless, the performance of the leather sector in general and footwear sub-sector in particular is far below the desired standards. The improvement strategies applied hitherto were mainly to tackle a small portion of their total problems. If the Ethiopian footwear companies have to become globally competitive, their entire business spectrum has to be assessed and appropriate improvement strategies must be selected. In this research, we used a Total manufacturing solutions (TMS technique to identify areas of improvement and improvement strategy of one of Ethiopian footwear companies. For this purpose, we conducted two surveys using structured questionnaire. The first survey was to test the TMS technique against the context of footwear industry. The result proved that the original TMS model can be used to measure the performance of footwear companies. The second survey was done to identify company's total problems, map its current position and select appropriate improvement strategy. The result revealed that the company has company-wide problems and its current position is a plodder. For plodders which have company-wide problems, the improvement strategy must include aggressive application of BPR; and the implementation of best practices to develop workers skills that encourages networking and promotion, a market-led manufacturing strategy, employee involvement and team work cultures. According to the findings of this research, we suggested that a BPR technique followed by a continuous improvement programme could be an appropriate improvement strategy for this company. The company requires long-term improvement

  16. A discussion of approaches to transforming care: contemporary strategies to improve patient safety.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burston, Sarah; Chaboyer, Wendy; Wallis, Marianne; Stanfield, Jane

    2011-11-01

    This article presents a discussion of three contemporary approaches to transforming care: Transforming Care at the Bedside, Releasing Time to Care: the Productive Ward and the work of the Studer Group(®). International studies of adverse events in hospitals have highlighted the need to focus on patient safety. The case for transformational change was identified and recently several approaches have been developed to effect this change. Despite limited evaluation, these approaches have spread and have been adopted outside their country of origin and contextual settings. Medline and CINAHL databases were searched for the years 1999-2009. Search terms included derivatives of 'transformation' combined with 'care', 'nursing', 'patient safety', 'Transforming Care at the Bedside', 'the Productive Ward' and 'Studer Group'. A comparison of the three approaches revealed similarities including: the foci of the approaches; interventions employed; and the outcomes measured. Key differences identified are the implementation models used, spread strategies and sustainability of the approaches. The approaches appear to be complementary and a hybrid of the approaches such as a blend of a top-down and bottom-up leadership strategy may offer more sustainable behavioural change. These approaches transform the way nurses do their work, how they work with others and how they view the care they provide to promote patient safety. All the approaches involve the implementation of multiple interventions occurring simultaneously to affect improvements in patient safety. The approaches are complementary and a hybrid approach may offer more sustainable outcomes. © 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  17. Strategies for improving extracellular lipolytic enzyme production by Thermus thermophilus HB27.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deive, Francisco J; Carvalho, Elisabete; Pastrana, Lorenzo; Rúa, Maria L; Longo, Maria A; Sanroman, M Angeles

    2009-07-01

    In Thermus thermophilus HB27 cultures the localisation of lipolytic activity is extracellular, intracellular and membrane bound, with low percentage for the former. Therefore, the extracellular secretion must be increased in order to simplify the downstream process and to reduce the economic cost. This study focuses on the design of an innovative operational strategy to increase extracellular lipolytic enzyme production by T. thermophilus HB27 at bioreactor scale. In order to favour its secretion, the effect of several operational variables was evaluated. Among them, the presence of oils in the culture medium leads to improvements in growth and lipolytic enzyme activity. Sunflower oil is the most efficient inducer showing better results when added after 10h of growth. On the other hand, although surfactants lead to an almost complete inhibition of growth and lipolytic enzyme production, their addition along the culture could affect the location of the enzyme. Thus, by addition of surfactants at the stationary phase, a release of intracellular and membrane enzyme which increases the extracellular enzyme proportion is detected. Based on these results, strategies with successive addition of oil and surfactant in several culture phases in shake flask are developed and verified in a laboratory scale stirred tank bioreactor.

  18. Image Inpainting Methods Evaluation and Improvement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raluca Vreja

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available With the upgrowing of digital processing of images and film archiving, the need for assisted or unsupervised restoration required the development of a series of methods and techniques. Among them, image inpainting is maybe the most impressive and useful. Based on partial derivative equations or texture synthesis, many other hybrid techniques have been proposed recently. The need for an analytical comparison, beside the visual one, urged us to perform the studies shown in the present paper. Starting with an overview of the domain, an evaluation of the five methods was performed using a common benchmark and measuring the PSNR. Conclusions regarding the performance of the investigated algorithms have been presented, categorizing them in function of the restored image structure. Based on these experiments, we have proposed an adaptation of Oliveira’s and Hadhoud’s algorithms, which are performing well on images with natural defects.

  19. Image inpainting methods evaluation and improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vreja, Raluca; Brad, Remus

    2014-01-01

    With the upgrowing of digital processing of images and film archiving, the need for assisted or unsupervised restoration required the development of a series of methods and techniques. Among them, image inpainting is maybe the most impressive and useful. Based on partial derivative equations or texture synthesis, many other hybrid techniques have been proposed recently. The need for an analytical comparison, beside the visual one, urged us to perform the studies shown in the present paper. Starting with an overview of the domain, an evaluation of the five methods was performed using a common benchmark and measuring the PSNR. Conclusions regarding the performance of the investigated algorithms have been presented, categorizing them in function of the restored image structure. Based on these experiments, we have proposed an adaptation of Oliveira's and Hadhoud's algorithms, which are performing well on images with natural defects.

  20. Evaluation of Targeted Influenza Vaccination Strategies via Population Modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glasser, John; Taneri, Denis; Feng, Zhilan; Chuang, Jen-Hsiang; Tüll, Peet; Thompson, William; Mason McCauley, Mary; Alexander, James

    2010-01-01

    Background Because they can generate comparable predictions, mathematical models are ideal tools for evaluating alternative drug or vaccine allocation strategies. To remain credible, however, results must be consistent. Authors of a recent assessment of possible influenza vaccination strategies conclude that older children, adolescents, and young adults are the optimal targets, no matter the objective, and argue for vaccinating them. Authors of two earlier studies concluded, respectively, that optimal targets depend on objectives and cautioned against changing policy. Which should we believe? Methods and Findings In matrices whose elements are contacts between persons by age, the main diagonal always predominates, reflecting contacts between contemporaries. Indirect effects (e.g., impacts of vaccinating one group on morbidity or mortality in others) result from off-diagonal elements. Mixing matrices based on periods in proximity with others have greater sub- and super-diagonals, reflecting contacts between parents and children, and other off-diagonal elements (reflecting, e.g., age-independent contacts among co-workers), than those based on face-to-face conversations. To assess the impact of targeted vaccination, we used a time-usage study's mixing matrix and allowed vaccine efficacy to vary with age. And we derived mortality rates either by dividing observed deaths attributed to pneumonia and influenza by average annual cases from a demographically-realistic SEIRS model or by multiplying those rates by ratios of (versus adding to them differences between) pandemic and pre-pandemic mortalities. Conclusions In our simulations, vaccinating older children, adolescents, and young adults averts the most cases, but vaccinating either younger children and older adults or young adults averts the most deaths, depending on the age distribution of mortality. These results are consistent with those of the earlier studies. PMID:20862297

  1. Evaluation of targeted influenza vaccination strategies via population modeling.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John Glasser

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Because they can generate comparable predictions, mathematical models are ideal tools for evaluating alternative drug or vaccine allocation strategies. To remain credible, however, results must be consistent. Authors of a recent assessment of possible influenza vaccination strategies conclude that older children, adolescents, and young adults are the optimal targets, no matter the objective, and argue for vaccinating them. Authors of two earlier studies concluded, respectively, that optimal targets depend on objectives and cautioned against changing policy. Which should we believe? METHODS AND FINDINGS: In matrices whose elements are contacts between persons by age, the main diagonal always predominates, reflecting contacts between contemporaries. Indirect effects (e.g., impacts of vaccinating one group on morbidity or mortality in others result from off-diagonal elements. Mixing matrices based on periods in proximity with others have greater sub- and super-diagonals, reflecting contacts between parents and children, and other off-diagonal elements (reflecting, e.g., age-independent contacts among co-workers, than those based on face-to-face conversations. To assess the impact of targeted vaccination, we used a time-usage study's mixing matrix and allowed vaccine efficacy to vary with age. And we derived mortality rates either by dividing observed deaths attributed to pneumonia and influenza by average annual cases from a demographically-realistic SEIRS model or by multiplying those rates by ratios of (versus adding to them differences between pandemic and pre-pandemic mortalities. CONCLUSIONS: In our simulations, vaccinating older children, adolescents, and young adults averts the most cases, but vaccinating either younger children and older adults or young adults averts the most deaths, depending on the age distribution of mortality. These results are consistent with those of the earlier studies.

  2. Evaluation of innovative strategies in the organization of Primary Health Care.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Onocko-Campos, Rosana Teresa; Campos, Gastão Wagner de Sousa; Ferrer, Ana Luiza; Corrêa, Carlos Roberto Silveira; Madureira, Paulo Roberto de; Gama, Carlos Alberto Pegolo da; Dantas, Deivisson Vianna; Nascimento, Roberta

    2012-02-01

    To compare the performance of Primary Care Units according to the implementation of new arrangements and strategies in primary care and mental health. Evaluative research with triangulation of methods and theoretical framework of critical hermeneutics, carried out at six Primary Care Units of the two most populous health districts of the city of Campinas (Southeastern Brazil) in 2007. The Primary Care Units were analyzed according to clinical resolution, articulation between the primary care and mental health networks and implementation of health promotion strategies. Two groups were defined by cluster analysis: one with higher and another one with lower degree of implementation of the actions. The groups were compared based on the improvement in clinical follow-up, given by the occurrence of cerebral vascular accident; evaluation of dispensation of psychiatric medicines; focal groups with workers, users and community health agents; and interviews with users and relatives. Inclusive and participatory research strategies were employed. There were no pure models, but a mosaic of organizational proposals. Positive advances were identified in the group with higher implementation of innovative strategies in relation to better integration of the community agents in the Units' teams; to the workers' and agents' perception of improvement in the assistance; and to the facility for referrals and assistance of mental health cases. The difficulties identified in both groups were: communication among the levels of care and within the teams, in the implementation of matrix support, and incipient health promotion actions. The development and implementation of mechanisms to fix professionals in Primary Care in large cities are necessary. The community health agents are fundamental to perform the territorial work proposed by the Family Health Strategy, using mechanisms to integrate the community health agents into the healthcare teams in order to counterbalance the tendency to

  3. Faculty verbal evaluations reveal strategies used to promote medical student performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lowell Tong

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Background: Preceptors rarely follow medical students’ developing clinical performance over time and across disciplines. This study analyzes preceptors’ descriptions of longitudinal integrated clerkship (LIC students’ clinical development and their identification of strategies to guide students’ progress. Methods: We used a common evaluation framework, reporter-interpreter-manager-educator, to guide multidisciplinary LIC preceptors’ discussions of students’ progress. We conducted thematic analysis of transcripts from preceptors’ (seven longitudinal ambulatory preceptors per student quarterly group discussions of 15 students’ performance over one year. Results: All students’ clinical development progressed, although most experienced obstacles. Lack of structure in the history and physical exam commonly obstructed progression. Preceptors used templates for data gathering, and modeling or experiences in the inpatient setting to provide time and solidify structure. To advance students’ knowledge acquisition, many preceptors identified focused learning topics with their students; to promote application of knowledge, preceptors used reasoning strategies to teach the steps involved in synthesizing clinical data. Preceptors shared accountability for helping students advance as the LIC allowed them to follow students’ response to teaching strategies. Discussion: These results depict preceptors’ perceptions of LIC students’ developmental continuum and illustrate how multidisciplinary preceptors can use a common evaluation framework to identify strategies to improve performance and follow students’ performance longitudinally.

  4. Evaluation of a pooled strategy for high-throughput sequencing of cosmid clones from metagenomic libraries.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kathy N Lam

    Full Text Available High-throughput sequencing methods have been instrumental in the growing field of metagenomics, with technological improvements enabling greater throughput at decreased costs. Nonetheless, the economy of high-throughput sequencing cannot be fully leveraged in the subdiscipline of functional metagenomics. In this area of research, environmental DNA is typically cloned to generate large-insert libraries from which individual clones are isolated, based on specific activities of interest. Sequence data are required for complete characterization of such clones, but the sequencing of a large set of clones requires individual barcode-based sample preparation; this can become costly, as the cost of clone barcoding scales linearly with the number of clones processed, and thus sequencing a large number of metagenomic clones often remains cost-prohibitive. We investigated a hybrid Sanger/Illumina pooled sequencing strategy that omits barcoding altogether, and we evaluated this strategy by comparing the pooled sequencing results to reference sequence data obtained from traditional barcode-based sequencing of the same set of clones. Using identity and coverage metrics in our evaluation, we show that pooled sequencing can generate high-quality sequence data, without producing problematic chimeras. Though caveats of a pooled strategy exist and further optimization of the method is required to improve recovery of complete clone sequences and to avoid circumstances that generate unrecoverable clone sequences, our results demonstrate that pooled sequencing represents an effective and low-cost alternative for sequencing large sets of metagenomic clones.

  5. Evaluating L2 Readers' Previewing Strategies Using Eye Tracking

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prichard, Caleb; Atkins, Andrew

    2016-01-01

    Previewing a text is a key global reading strategy. Previewing may increase comprehension as it can activate schema, increase global awareness of the text, and enhance the use of other reading strategies. Despite its importance, an explicit focus on previewing skills has been lacking and previous research on the reading strategies of second…

  6. Feedback providing improvement strategies and reflection on feedback use: Effects on students' writing motivation, process, and performance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Duijnhouwer, H.; Prins, F.J.; Stokking, K.M.

    2012-01-01

    This study investigated the effects of feedback providing improvement strategies and a reflection assignment on students’ writing motivation, process, and performance. Students in the experimental feedback condition (n = 41) received feedback including improvement strategies, whereas students in the

  7. Evaluation and Enhancement of Carbon Dioxide Flooding Through Sweep Improvement

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hughes, Richard

    2009-09-30

    Carbon dioxide displacement is a common improved recovery method applied to light oil reservoirs (30-45{degrees}API). The economic and technical success of CO{sub 2} floods is often limited by poor sweep efficiency or large CO{sub 2} utilization rates. Projected incremental recoveries for CO{sub 2} floods range from 7% to 20% of the original oil in place; however, actual incremental recoveries range from 9% to 15% of the original oil in place, indicating the potential for significant additional recoveries with improved sweep efficiency. This research program was designed to study the effectiveness of carbon dioxide flooding in a mature reservoir to identify and develop methods and strategies to improve oil recovery in carbon dioxide floods. Specifically, the project has focused on relating laboratory, theoretical and simulation studies to actual field performance in a CO{sub 2} flood in an attempt to understand and mitigate problems of areal and vertical sweep efficiency. In this work the focus has been on evaluating the status of existing swept regions of a mature CO{sub 2} flood and developing procedures to improve the design of proposed floods. The Little Creek Field, Mississippi has been studied through laboratory, theoretical, numerical and simulation studies in an attempt to relate performance predictions to historical reservoir performance to determine sweep efficiency, improve the understanding of the reservoir response to CO{sub 2} injection, and develop scaling methodologies to relate laboratory data and simulation results to predicted reservoir behavior. Existing laboratory information from Little Creek was analyzed and an extensive amount of field data was collected. This was merged with an understanding of previous work at Little Creek to generate a detailed simulation study of two portions of the field – the original pilot area and a currently active part of the field. This work was done to try to relate all of this information to an understanding

  8. IMPROVING THE STUDENTS’ EFL WRITING ABILITY THROUGH “PUT YOURSELF IN THE PICTURE” STRATEGY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Muhammad Lukman Syafii

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract: This Action research was intended to improve the students’ EFL writing ability through “Put Yourself in the Picture” strategy. This research involved 33 first year managemen major of students A of Muhammadiyah University of Ponorogo in the academic year 2015/2016. This research was conducted in two cycles by following the procedures of the action research, namely, planning, implementing, observing, and reflecting. Each cycle of the research encompassed three meetings. The data of the research were gathered through observation checklists, field notes, questionnaire, and portfolio. The findings of research showed that “Put Yourself in the Picture” strategy has proven effectively to improve the student’ writing ability. The improvement could be seen from the increase of the students’ average writing score. Besides, “Put Yourself in the Picture” strategy can increase the students’ participation during the process of writing. Key words: “Put Yourself in the Picture” strategy, writing ability

  9. Science Partnerships Enabling Rapid Response: Designing a Strategy for Improving Scientific Collaboration during Crisis Response

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mease, L.; Gibbs, T.; Adiseshan, T.

    2014-12-01

    The 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster required unprecedented engagement and collaboration with scientists from multiple disciplines across government, academia, and industry. Although this spurred the rapid advancement of valuable new scientific knowledge and tools, it also exposed weaknesses in the system of information dissemination and exchange among the scientists from those three sectors. Limited government communication with the broader scientific community complicated the rapid mobilization of the scientific community to assist with spill response, evaluation of impact, and public perceptions of the crisis. The lessons and new laws produced from prior spills such as Exxon Valdez were helpful, but ultimately did not lead to the actions necessary to prepare a suitable infrastructure that would support collaboration with non-governmental scientists. As oil demand pushes drilling into increasingly extreme environments, addressing the challenge of effective, science-based disaster response is an imperative. Our study employs a user-centered design process to 1) understand the obstacles to and opportunity spaces for effective scientific collaboration during environmental crises such as large oil spills, 2) identify possible tools and strategies to enable rapid information exchange between government responders and non-governmental scientists from multiple relevant disciplines, and 3) build a network of key influencers to secure sufficient buy-in for scaled implementation of appropriate tools and strategies. Our methods include user ethnography, complex system mapping, individual and system behavioral analysis, and large-scale system design to identify and prototype a solution to this crisis collaboration challenge. In this talk, we will present out insights gleaned from existing analogs of successful scientific collaboration during crises and our initial findings from the 60 targeted interviews we conducted that highlight key collaboration challenges that government

  10. Evaluating sampling strategies for larval cisco (Coregonus artedi)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Myers, J.T.; Stockwell, J.D.; Yule, D.L.; Black, J.A.

    2008-01-01

    To improve our ability to assess larval cisco (Coregonus artedi) populations in Lake Superior, we conducted a study to compare several sampling strategies. First, we compared density estimates of larval cisco concurrently captured in surface waters with a 2 x 1-m paired neuston net and a 0.5-m (diameter) conical net. Density estimates obtained from the two gear types were not significantly different, suggesting that the conical net is a reasonable alternative to the more cumbersome and costly neuston net. Next, we assessed the effect of tow pattern (sinusoidal versus straight tows) to examine if propeller wash affected larval density. We found no effect of propeller wash on the catchability of larval cisco. Given the availability of global positioning systems, we recommend sampling larval cisco using straight tows to simplify protocols and facilitate straightforward measurements of volume filtered. Finally, we investigated potential trends in larval cisco density estimates by sampling four time periods during the light period of a day at individual sites. Our results indicate no significant trends in larval density estimates during the day. We conclude estimates of larval cisco density across space are not confounded by time at a daily timescale. Well-designed, cost effective surveys of larval cisco abundance will help to further our understanding of this important Great Lakes forage species.

  11. Improving Eleventh Graders’ Reading Comprehension Through Text Coding and Double Entry Organizer Reading Strategies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mahecha Rocío

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available

    In this article we report on an innovation project developed with a group of eleventh graders at a public school in Bogotá. Its aim was to encourage students to improve reading comprehension of texts in English. It was conducted taking into account students’ needs, interests and level of English. To do it, we implemented two reading strategies: text coding and double entry organizer. We observed the students’ attitudes during two lesson plans, compared their level of comprehension before and after using the reading strategies and asked them to self-evaluate their performance. At the end, we could see their improvement, how they enjoyed doing the activities and became more confident.

     

    En este artículo reportamos un proyecto de innovación desarrollado con un grupo de estudiantes de grado once de un colegio distrital de Bogotá. El propósito era animar a los estudiantes a mejorar su comprensión de textos en inglés. Para ello se tuvieron en cuenta sus necesidades, intereses y nivel de inglés. Se utilizaron dos estrategias de lectura: codificación de texto y organizador de doble entrada. Observamos la actitud de los estudiantes durante el desarrollo de dos lecciones, comparamos sus niveles de comprensión de lectura antes y después de utilizar las dos estrategias y les pedimos autoevaluar su desempeño. Al final pudimos apreciar mejoría en los niveles de comprensión, el disfrute en la realización de las actividades y la seguridad que alcanzaron.

  12. Alternative strategies to improve the beneficial effects of exercise throughout life : dietary and physiological aspects

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    R.T. Mankowski (Robert Tomasz)

    2015-01-01

    markdownabstractAbstract It is certain that the aging process leads to death, but decreasing the levels of pathology throughout life improves the quality of life and extends life span. Therefore, this dissertation focuses on alternative strategies that may contribute to improving the aging

  13. Strategies to improve effectiveness of physical activity coaching systems: Development of personas for providing tailored feedback

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Achterkamp, Reinoud; van Weering, Marit; Evering, R.M.H.; Tabak, Monique; Timmerman, Josien; Hermens, Hermanus J.; Vollenbroek-Hutten, Miriam Marie Rosé

    2017-01-01

    Mobile physical activity interventions can be improved by incorporating behavioural change theories. Relations between self-efficacy, stage of change, and physical activity are investigated, enabling development of feedback strategies that can be used to improve their effectiveness. A total of 325

  14. 77 FR 32959 - Request for Information on Strategies for Improving Outcomes for Disconnected Youth

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-06-04

    ..., unemployment, or underemployment. Disconnected youth are not a homogenous group. Disconnected youth struggle... Request for Information on Strategies for Improving Outcomes for Disconnected Youth AGENCY: Office of... Partnership Pilots'' that would improve outcomes for disconnected youth. In order to inform the Administration...

  15. Results-Oriented Evaluations: Their Uses, Their Limits and How They are Driving Implementers‘ Coping Strategies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michel Leroy

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available While the use of monitoring and evaluation (M&E by media development implementers is well documented, organizations’ coping strategies to adapt to new environments in media and development still remain a relatively unexplored area. The article aims at showing how the theoretical lessons learnt by the industry have been put into practice and how a successful change can be driven within an organization using outside experts. A results-oriented culture of performance and service has been enforced since the 1990s in the EU. Evaluation systems have been a powerful catalyst in driving the transition from media support to media development and in making the latter more independent from broadcasters and donors. In recent years, changes in media assistance procedures and aims have profoundly modified the traditional landscape. This article will not question these changes, their origin and motivations. It will focus on implementers’ coping strategies to adapt (or not to these new procedures and aims and how results-oriented evaluations can drive the shift from outputs to outcomes in a changing media development sector. Can capitalizing on experience be considered a learning process that prepares for change and improves the design and implementation of projects? To what extent can it help to empower the operator as an organization? Referring to various concrete case studies from British, French and German media assistance, the article will focus on virtuous change – the circumstances that encourage structures, as well as donors who fund them, to better define and operationalize their strategies.

  16. Improvement of workíng environment - from a grass-root strategy to institutionalized professionalism

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jacobsen, Thomas

    2002-01-01

    on workers. During that period different groups of actors have been involved, new institutions to improve working environment have emerged, and legislation has been changed. The paper will describe the development from a grass-root strategy to improve working environment to a much more complex situation......Improvement of working environment as a tool to promote sustainable development - from a grass-root strategy to institutionalized professionalism. It is now more than 25 years since substitution of organic solvents started to be considered as a meaningful way in Denmark to reduce harmful effects...

  17. The Role of Evaluation in the School Improvement Process

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindahl, Ronald A.; Beach, Robert H.

    2013-01-01

    Although evaluation serves many purposes in education, there is virtually unanimous agreement that evaluation is a critical component of all school improvement processes. Hamilton et al. (2003) asserted that "assessment and evaluation should be built into reform programs from the outset" (p. 26). Kimball, Lander, and Thorn (2010)…

  18. Strategy, Performance Evaluation and Process Management in Higher Education Institutions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sabrina Letícia Couto da Silva

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available The processes of Strategic Planning (SP, Performance Evaluation (PE and Process Management (PM for Higher Education Institutions (HEI are considered more than ever, urgent and necessary, acting as the factors of motivation, awareness and exploratory data collection. The objective of this paper is to identify positive and negative aspects involved in realization of SP, PE and PM in HEI, through a literature review. The study was exploratory and descriptive, accomplished through a bibliographic review in online data bases. It was possible to identify that HEI are considered complex systems which results in implications on execution of the SP, PE and PM. Apart from that, it was identified barriers in the literature, being the main ones: decentralization, autonomy of departments, heterogeneity in the operation of departments, data stored in places that cannot be accessed by everybody, bureaucracy, resistance to change, dissociation between planning and management, lack of participation of university community in the process of planning. It was also found ways to overcome these barriers being the main ones: commitment of high management, clear strategy, wide communication and participation of all people involved.

  19. [Evaluation of a strategy for the control of tuberculosis in a health district of andalusia, Spain].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luna Sánchez, Antonio; Romero Romero, Beatriz; Expósito García, Sebastián; Mata Martín, Ana María

    2010-01-01

    Tuberculosis in Spain and Andalusia, the incidence rates above those of surrounding countries. Many authors emphasize the need for improved epidemiological information, the organization of health services and social support to patients. The aim of this study was to evaluate the results obtained after developing a strategy involving the three elements outlined in the Primary Care District of Andalusia. We followed up to 234 TB patients residing in the District and reported to the Epidemiological Surveillance System of Andalusia during the period 2004-2008. Were considered as indicators for evaluating the percentage of patients who completed treatment, the percentage of smear-positive contacts with study, new cases detected in the same and the incidence in children under 15 years. Of the 234 patients were followed up cash 95% of them completed treatment 182 (78%) died 18, moved from home, 10 and 12 still remained in treatment. Of the 130 cases that presented positive sputum studied 112 contacts (86%). 27 new cases were detected among the contacts studied, and the annual incidence in children under 15 years was 6.65 per 100,000 population. Tracking losses were reduced by 30%, and terminations of treatment and contact studies improved by 25% and 30% respectively compared to data from the whole of Andalusia. The strategy has helped improve the proposed assessment indicators. The% of new cases detected in studies of contacts and the annual incidence in children under 15 years was similar in this study than in Andalusia.

  20. Strategies for Improving the Quality of Polling Service in Wireless Metropolitan Area Network

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yang Zhi-Jun

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Four kinds of service types are defined in IEEE 802.16. In order to provide the Quality of Service (Qos for different services, the system must use a reasonable resource allocation method and scheduling algorithm to efficiently and fairly allocate bandwidth resources. Although in the IEEE 802.16 MAC, for the uplink real-time polling service (rtPS and non-real-time polling service (nrtPS business type of data transmission are used to polling, but do not provide business-based services. In this paper, the distinction between priority service of rtPS and nrtPS is carried out, and the simulation experiment is used to analyze the performance characteristics of the protocol under the distinction of high and low priority. Wherein the theoretical values of the average delay and the information packets are compared with the experimental values. The average query cycle and throughput are also evaluated. Which proves the validity of the improved service strategy and improves the service characteristics of the system.

  1. 77 FR 26292 - Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategy Assessments: Social Science Methodologies to Assess Goals...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-05-03

    ... Mitigation Strategy Assessments: Social Science Methodologies to Assess Goals Related to Knowledge.'' The... an issue paper entitled ``Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategy Assessments: Social Science...' knowledge about drugs' risks; (2) share current FDA experience regarding social science assessments of...

  2. Adherence to medication in patients with dementia: predictors and strategies for improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arlt, Sönke; Lindner, Reinhard; Rösler, Alexander; von Renteln-Kruse, Wolfgang

    2008-01-01

    Measures to facilitate patient medication adherence should be considered an integral part of the comprehensive care of older patients with multiple diseases. However, impairment of cognitive functions and dementia, in particular, may substantially compromise adherence behaviour. Therefore, a literature review was performed to identify factors associated with adherence to medication in patients with cognitive impairment or dementia, and to discuss strategies for improvement of non-adherence. Evidence-based information on how to deal with adherence to medication in patients with dementia is scarce because of a lack of specific studies. However, there is increasing knowledge about factors influencing medication adherence behaviour in older age, and emerging insight into the relationships between adherence behaviour and cognitive capacity, memory and executive function, in particular. Nevertheless, understanding elderly persons' strategies for maintaining regular use of even complex drug regimens is still limited. Progress of research in this field is needed. It is notable that measures to improve adherence consist of combinations of educational interventions and cognitive support but assessment of study participants' cognitive function is rare. In clinical practice, awareness of non-adherence as a result of cognitive impairment is relatively low. The most important step is early detection of cognitive impairment when this is impacting negatively on medication management. A practical geriatric screening test is recommended to identify memory problems and further functional impairments associated with cognitive impairment. Performance-based assessments might be useful for screening medication management capacity, in addition to a careful drug history, inspection of all medicines used (including over-the-counter drugs) and proxy information. However, no feasible screening methods have as yet found their way into clinical practice. Patients with impaired executive

  3. Evaluation of the National Teenage Pregnancy Strategy: final synthesis report

    OpenAIRE

    Wellings, Kaye; Wilkinson, Paul; Kane, Ros

    2005-01-01

    The Teenage Pregnancy Strategy in England, published in June 1999, is a multifaceted strategy that includes action to both halve the under 18 conception rate by 2010 and provide support to teenage parents to reduce the long term risk of social exclusion by increasing the proportion in education, training and employment. The Strategy has four major components: 1) a national media awareness campaign via independent radio and teenage magazines, 2) joined up action to ensure that ...

  4. Evaluation of three lidar scanning strategies for turbulence measurements

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Newman, Jennifer F.; Klein, Petra M.; Wharton, Sonia

    2016-01-01

    .Results indicate that the six-beam strategy mitigates some of the errors caused by VAD and DBS scans, but the strategy is strongly affected by errors in the variance measured at the different beam positions. The ZephIR and WindCube lidars overestimated horizontal variance values by over 60% under unstable......Several errors occur when a traditional Doppler beam swinging (DBS) or velocity-azimuth display (VAD) strategy is used to measure turbulence with a lidar. To mitigate some of these errors, a scanning strategy was recently developed which employs six beam positions to independently estimate the u, v...

  5. Evaluation of Strategies for Dynamic Routing Algorithms in Support of Flex-Grid based GMPLS Elastic Optical Networks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Turus, Ioan; Kleist, Josva; Fagertun, Anna Manolova

    2013-01-01

    We evaluate OSPF-TE extensions within GMPLS framework in support of flex-grid optical networks. Based on OSPF-TE LSAs, two routing strategies are proposed achieving up to 15% and 70% respectively improved blocking ratio for low loaded network (10-30 Erlangs) compared to the shortest path scenario....

  6. Evaluation of Atmospheric Loading and Improved Troposphere Modelling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zelensky, Nikita P.; Chinn, Douglas S.; Lemoine, F. G.; Le Bail, Karine; Pavlis, Despina E.

    2012-01-01

    Forward modeling of non-tidal atmospheric loading displacements at geodetic tracking stations have not routinely been included in Doppler Orbitography and Radiopositionning Integrated by Satellite (DORIS) or Satellite Laser Ranging (SLR) station analyses for either POD applications or reference frame determination. The displacements which are computed from 6-hourly models such as the ECMWF and can amount to 3-10 mm in the east, north and up components depending on the tracking station locations. We evaluate the application of atmospheric loading in a number ways using the NASA GSFC GEODYN software: First we assess the impact on SLR & DORIS-determined orbits such as Jason-2, where we evaluate the impact on the tracking data RMS of fit and how the total orbits are changed with the application of this correction. Preliminary results show an RMS radial change of 0.5 mm for Jason-2 over 54 cycles and a total change in the Z-centering of the orbit of 3 mm peak-to-peak over one year. We also evaluate the effects on other DORIS-satellites such as Cryosat-2, Envisat and the SPOT satellites. In the second step, we produce two SINEX time series based on data from available DORIS satellites and assess the differences in WRMS, scale and Helmert translation parameters. Troposphere refraction is obviously an important correction for radiometric data types such as DORIS. We evaluate recent improvements in DORIS processing at GSFC including the application of the Vienna Mapping Function (VMF1) grids with a-priori hydrostatic (VZHDs) and wet (VZWDs) zenith delays. We reduce the gridded VZHD at the stations height using pressure and temperature derived from GPT (strategy 1) and Saastamoinen. We discuss the validation of the VMF1 implementation and its application to the Jason-2 POD processing, compared to corrections using the Niell mapping function and the GMF. Using one year of data, we also assess the impact of the new troposphere corrections on the DORIS-only solutions, most

  7. Research on the control strategy of distributed energy resources inverter based on improved virtual synchronous generator

    OpenAIRE

    Gao, Changwei; Liu, Xiaoming; Chen, Hai

    2017-01-01

    This paper focus on the power fluctuations of the virtual synchronous generator(VSG) during the transition process. An improved virtual synchronous generator(IVSG) control strategy based on feed-forward compensation is proposed. Adjustable parameter of the compensation section can be modified to achieve the goal of reducing the order of the system. It can effectively suppress the power fluctuations of the VSG in transient process. To verify the effectiveness of the proposed control strategy f...

  8. Communication strategy of the soccer club SK Slavia Praha and proposals of its improvement

    OpenAIRE

    Hladík, Martin

    2013-01-01

    COMMUNICATION STRATEGY OF THE SOCCER CLUB SK SLAVIA PRAHA AND PROPOSALS OF ITS IMPROVEMENT Objectives: The objective of this research is the establishment of communication strategies of an organization SK Slavia Praha Football Club for the upcoming season. This project will be completed based on the analysis of the club's current communication mix as well as current communication distribution channels with the club's fan base. Methods: For the research various methods were used such as the ca...

  9. Food for rumination : developing novel feeding strategies to improve the welfare of veal calves

    OpenAIRE

    Webb, L.E.

    2014-01-01

    Summary of thesis entitled: “Food for Rumination – Developing novel feeding strategies to improve the welfare of veal calves”, Laura Webb Veal calves are typically fed high levels of milk replacer supplemented with solid feed, which tends to contain a relatively small roughage component. Feeding strategies used in veal production have been associated with welfare issues, including the development of abnormal oral behaviours (AOB) and poor gastrointestinal health. AOB include...

  10. What do primary care physicians and researchers consider the most important patient safety improvement strategies?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wensing Michel

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Although it has been increasingly recognised that patient safety in primary care is important, little is known about the feasibility and effectiveness of different strategies to improve patient safety in primary care. In this study, we aimed to identify the most important strategies by consulting an international panel of primary care physicians and researchers. Methods A web-based survey was undertaken in an international panel of 58 individuals from eight countries with a strong primary care system. The questionnaire consisted of 38 strategies to improve patient safety. We asked the respondents whether these strategies were currently used in their own country, and whether they felt them to be important. Results Most of the 38 presented strategies were seen as important by a majority of the participants, but the use of strategies in daily practice varied widely. Strategies that yielded the highest scores (>70% regarding importance included a good medical record system (82% felt this was very important, while 83% said it was implemented in more than half of the practices, good telephone access (71% importance, 83% implementation, standards for record keeping (75% importance, 62% implementation, learning culture (74% importance, 10% implementation, vocational training on patient safety for GPs (81% importance, 24% implementation and the presence of a patient safety guideline (81% importance, 15% implementation. Conclusion An international panel of primary care physicians and researchers felt that many different strategies to improve patient safety were important. Highly important strategies with poor implementation included a culture that is positive for patient safety, education on patient safety for physicians, and the presence of a patient safety guideline.

  11. Methods for evaluation of small scale quality improvement projects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harvey, G; Wensing, M

    2003-06-01

    Evaluation is an integral component of quality improvement and there is much to be learned from the evaluation of small scale quality improvement initiatives at a local level. This type of evaluation is useful for a number of different reasons including monitoring the impact of local projects, identifying and dealing with issues as they arise within a project, comparing local projects to draw lessons, and collecting more detailed information as part of a bigger evaluation project. Focused audits and developmental studies can be used for evaluation within projects, while methods such as multiple case studies and process evaluations can be used to draw generalised lessons from local experiences and to provide examples of successful projects. Evaluations of small scale quality improvement projects help those involved in improvement initiatives to optimise their choice of interventions and use of resources. Important information to add to the knowledge base of quality improvement in health care can be derived by undertaking formal evaluation of local projects, particularly in relation to building theory around the processes of implementation and increasing understanding of the complex change processes involved.

  12. A New Hybrid Decision Making Framework for Prioritising Port Performance Improvement Strategies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Min Ho Ha

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available This study aims to propose a conceptual decision making framework for prioritising port performance improvement strategies. It can be achieved by the concepts of benchmarking-best practices using analytic hierarchy process (AHP incorporating a fuzzy technique for order preference by similarity to ideal solution (FTOPSIS method. The leading performer (i.e. Busan New Port and the poor performer (i.e. Busan North Port are analysed as real cases to demonstrate the feasibility of the proposed methodology. The findings from the case study reveal that the terminal operating company (TOC 2 represents a strong desire to choose the given strategies to improve its performance, followed by TOC3, while TOC1 has the least intention to adopt the given strategies. Amongst the 30 strategies of a benefit feature, optimisation of yard stacking planning (S4 is ascertained as the most crucial one to be implemented, followed by optimisation of berth to yard operations (S27 and optimising crane availability (S2. On the other hand, the formal training/education programmes from external professionals (S7 is identified as the most useful strategy among the 8 cost items. The results yielded by the framework present the ranking of strategy options in terms of their preference to different TOCs, which enables decision makers to find optimal solutions to improve performance under their own dynamic business environments.

  13. Research on the control strategy of distributed energy resources inverter based on improved virtual synchronous generator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Changwei; Liu, Xiaoming; Chen, Hai

    2017-08-22

    This paper focus on the power fluctuations of the virtual synchronous generator(VSG) during the transition process. An improved virtual synchronous generator(IVSG) control strategy based on feed-forward compensation is proposed. Adjustable parameter of the compensation section can be modified to achieve the goal of reducing the order of the system. It can effectively suppress the power fluctuations of the VSG in transient process. To verify the effectiveness of the proposed control strategy for distributed energy resources inverter, the simulation model is set up in MATLAB/SIMULINK platform and physical experiment platform is established. Simulation and experiment results demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed IVSG control strategy.

  14. Implementation and evaluation of critical thinking strategies to enhance critical thinking skills in Middle Eastern nurses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simpson, Elaine; Courtney, Mary

    2008-12-01

    The purpose of this study was to develop, implement and evaluate critical thinking strategies to enhance critical thinking skills in Middle Eastern nurses. Critical thinking strategies such as questioning, debate, role play and small group activity were developed and used in a professional development programme, which was trialled on a sample of Middle Eastern nurses (n = 20), to promote critical thinking skills, encourage problem solving, development of clinical judgment making and care prioritization in order to improve patient care and outcomes. Classroom learning was transformed from memorization to interaction and active participation. The intervention programme was successful in developing critical thinking skills in both the nurse educators and student nurses in this programme. This programme successfully integrated critical thinking strategies into a Middle Eastern nursing curriculum. Recommendations are as follows: (1) utilize evidence-based practice and stem questions to encourage the formulation of critical thinking questions; (2) support the needs of nurse educators for them to effectively implement teaching strategies to foster critical thinking skills; and (3) adopt creative approaches to (i) transform students into interactive participants and (ii) open students' minds and stimulate higher-level thinking and problem-solving abilities.

  15. A practical communication strategy to improve implementation of evidence-based practice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diedrick, Lee A; Schaffer, Marjorie A; Sandau, Kristin E

    2011-11-01

    The purpose of this study was to determine if a consistent communication strategy for implementation of evidence-based practice (EBP), developed with input from staff nurses, improved staff nurse satisfaction with communication of practice changes. Integration of EBP knowledge into clinical practice supports optimal nursing care. Awareness of a practice change and the ability to reference the information may be problematic. A quasi-experimental single group before-after design was used to survey all RNs of a level III neonatal ICU for satisfaction before and after implementation of the EBP communication strategy. Registered nurse satisfaction improved regarding the amount of communication (P strategy can improve nurse satisfaction with communication of EBP changes. Copyright © 2011 Wolters Kluwer Health | Lippincott Williams & Wilkins

  16. [STRATEGIES TO IMPROVE THE NUTRITIONAL AND HEALTH CHARACTERISTICS OF MEAT PIE OF MURCIA].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruiz-Cano, Domingo; Zamora, Salvador; Frutos, María José; López-Jiménez, José Ángel; Pérez-Llamas, Francisca

    2015-12-01

    improvement of the nutritive quality and healthy properties of the meat pie of Murcia (MMP), maintaining its appreciated organoleptic quality and the design of a functional MMP through the addition of a natural ingredient rich in fructooligosaccharides. different formulations of the MMP (healthy MMP and functional MMP) have been elaborated by changing the type and amount of some of its ingredients. The nutritional composition, the caloric value, the fatty acid profile and the fat quality have been determined. Different sensory attributes have been evaluated together with the global acceptance using a descriptive scale and an hedonic scale respectively. the healthy MMP presents a lower energy content (15.4%), total fat (39%), saturated fat (48%) and salt (45%), and a decrease of the potential atherogenic (27%), trombogenic (30%) and hipercholesterolemic (30%) indexes than the traditional product. Among the four amounts assayed (2.5, 5, 10 y 15%), only the substitution with 2.5 and 5% of the functional ingredient, did not diminish the global acceptance of the functional MMP when compared to the traditional one. the changes in the formulation have improved the nutritive composition and the healthy characteristics of the traditional MMP, keeping its organoleptic quality. The functional MMP elaborated with the functional ingredient at 5% represents an improvement in the functional characteristics of the studied food. These strategies contribute to the maintenance of this type of traditional foods, avoiding the lose of culture, identity and gastronomic heritage of Spain and in particular in the Region of Murcia. Copyright AULA MEDICA EDICIONES 2014. Published by AULA MEDICA. All rights reserved.

  17. Economic evaluation of an implementation strategy for the management of low back pain in general practice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jensen, Cathrine Elgaard; Riis, Allan; Petersen, Karin Dam; Jensen, Martin Bach; Pedersen, Kjeld Møller

    2017-05-01

    In connection with the publication of a clinical practice guideline on the management of low back pain (LBP) in general practice in Denmark, a cluster randomised controlled trial was conducted. In this trial, a multifaceted guideline implementation strategy to improve general practitioners' treatment of patients with LBP was compared with a usual implementation strategy. The aim was to determine whether the multifaceted strategy was cost effective, as compared with the usual implementation strategy. The economic evaluation was conducted as a cost-utility analysis where cost collected from a societal perspective and quality-adjusted life years were used as outcome measures. The analysis was conducted as a within-trial analysis with a 12-month time horizon consistent with the follow-up period of the clinical trial. To adjust for a priori selected covariates, generalised linear models with a gamma family were used to estimate incremental costs and quality-adjusted life years. Furthermore, both deterministic and probabilistic sensitivity analyses were conducted. Results showed that costs associated with primary health care were higher, whereas secondary health care costs were lower for the intervention group when compared with the control group. When adjusting for covariates, the intervention was less costly, and there was no significant difference in effect between the 2 groups. Sensitivity analyses showed that results were sensitive to uncertainty. In conclusion, the multifaceted implementation strategy was cost saving when compared with the usual strategy for implementing LBP clinical practice guidelines in general practice. Furthermore, there was no significant difference in effect, and the estimate was sensitive to uncertainty.

  18. An evaluation of the Australian Football League Central Australian Responsible Alcohol Strategy 2005-07.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mentha, Ricky; Wakerman, Johne

    2009-12-01

    In 2004, the Australian Football League Central Australia (AFLCA) implemented the Responsible Alcohol Strategy (RAS), which aimed to decrease alcohol consumption at matches, and to promote healthy lifestyle messages to the youth of Central Australia participating in Australian Rules football. The evaluation adopted a pre- and post-implementation design to monitor a number of performance indicators. The evaluation analysed routinely collected data from AFLCA, its Security Company, Alice Springs Police Department and Alice Springs Hospital; we surveyed AFLCA staff, club officials and umpires; and undertook direct observation at AFLCA events. The volume of alcohol sold at matches decreased. Survey data indicate decreased alcohol related violence, improved spectator behaviour and decreased spectator attendances. Police data suggest declining alcohol-related and violent behaviours, but trends were not statistically significant. Alice Springs Hospital injury admission data indicate a non-significant interaction between year and season effect. In a community context of high alcohol consumption and high rates of interpersonal violence, the strategies implemented were successful in decreasing alcohol consumption and related undesirable behaviours at football games. However, these measures have resulted in unintended consequences: decreased numbers of spectators attending games, decreased canteen sales and falling sponsorship. The decreased revenue has raised serious issues about sustainability of the alcohol intervention, and stimulated discussions with government and others about strategies to maintain this important alcohol reduction policy.

  19. Respiratory effort correction strategies to improve the reproducibility of lung expansion measurements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Du, Kaifang; Reinhardt, Joseph M; Christensen, Gary E; Ding, Kai; Bayouth, John E

    2013-12-01

    Four-dimensional computed tomography (4DCT) can be used to make measurements of pulmonary function longitudinally. The sensitivity of such measurements to identify change depends on measurement uncertainty. Previously, intrasubject reproducibility of Jacobian-based measures of lung tissue expansion was studied in two repeat prior-RT 4DCT human acquisitions. Difference in respiratory effort such as breathing amplitude and frequency may affect longitudinal function assessment. In this study, the authors present normalization schemes that correct ventilation images for variations in respiratory effort and assess the reproducibility improvement after effort correction. Repeat 4DCT image data acquired within a short time interval from 24 patients prior to radiation therapy (RT) were used for this analysis. Using a tissue volume preserving deformable image registration algorithm, Jacobian ventilation maps in two scanning sessions were computed and compared on the same coordinate for reproducibility analysis. In addition to computing the ventilation maps from end expiration to end inspiration, the authors investigated the effort normalization strategies using other intermediated inspiration phases upon the principles of equivalent tidal volume (ETV) and equivalent lung volume (ELV). Scatter plots and mean square error of the repeat ventilation maps and the Jacobian ratio map were generated for four conditions: no effort correction, global normalization, ETV, and ELV. In addition, gamma pass rate was calculated from a modified gamma index evaluation between two ventilation maps, using acceptance criterions of 2 mm distance-to-agreement and 5% ventilation difference. The pattern of regional pulmonary ventilation changes as lung volume changes. All effort correction strategies improved reproducibility when changes in respiratory effort were greater than 150 cc (p ventilation measures, and the improvement of reproducibility is highly correlated with the changes in

  20. Strategies for improving the solubility and metabolic stability of griseofulvin analogues

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Petersen, Asger Bjørn; Konotop, G.; Hanafiah, N. H. M.

    2016-01-01

    We report two types of modifications to the natural product griseofulvin as strategies to improve solubility and metabolic stability: the conversion of aryl methyl ethers into aryl difluoromethyl ethers at metabolic hotspots and the conversion of the C-ring ketone into polar oximes. The syntheses...... of the analogues are described together with their solubility, metabolic half-life in vitro and antiproliferative effect in two cancer cell lines. We conclude that on balance, the formation of polar oximes is the most promising strategy for improving the properties of the analogues....

  1. Performance Improvement of DTC-SVM for Matrix Converter Drives Using an Overmodulation Strategy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lee, Kyo-Beum; Blaabjerg, Frede

    2005-01-01

    In this paper, an improved direct torque control (DTC) method for matrix converter drives is proposed which enables to minimize torque ripple and to obtain unity input power factor, while maintaining constant switching frequency and fast torque dynamics. It is possible to combine the advantages...... of matrix converters with the advantages of the DTC strategy using space vector modulation and a flux deadbeat control. However, drawbacks still exist such as a degrading of dynamic torque response compared to the basic DTC method. In the proposed scheme, an improved DTC strategy for matrix converter drives...

  2. Strategies for improving the solubility and metabolic stability of griseofulvin analogues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petersen, A B; Konotop, G; Hanafiah, N H M; Hammershøj, P; Raab, M S; Krämer, A; Clausen, M H

    2016-06-30

    We report two types of modifications to the natural product griseofulvin as strategies to improve solubility and metabolic stability: the conversion of aryl methyl ethers into aryl difluoromethyl ethers at metabolic hotspots and the conversion of the C-ring ketone into polar oximes. The syntheses of the analogues are described together with their solubility, metabolic half-life in vitro and antiproliferative effect in two cancer cell lines. We conclude that on balance, the formation of polar oximes is the most promising strategy for improving the properties of the analogues. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  3. A Strategy for Improving US Middle School Student Mathematics Word Problem Solving Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, Valerie L.

    2004-01-01

    U.S. middle school students have difficulty understanding and solving mathematics word problems. Their mathematics performance on the Third International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMMS) is far below their international peers, and minority students are less likely than high socioeconomic status (SES) White/Asian students to be exposed to higher-level mathematics concepts. Research literature also indicates that when students use both In-School and Out-of-School knowledge and experiences to create authentic mathematics word problems, student achievement improves. This researcher developed a Strategy for improving mathematics problem solving performance and a Professional Development Model (PDM) to effectively implement the Strategy.

  4. Aspects you should consider in your action plan when implementing an improvement strategy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Carstensen, Peter; Vinter, Otto

    2017-01-01

    Both ISO/IEC 15504 (SPICE) and ISO/IEC 33014 include a step in their improvement process called: Develop action plan. But which actions should you include, and are you sure that these actions cover all aspects? We have performed a thorough study of the change strategy literature that is the found......Both ISO/IEC 15504 (SPICE) and ISO/IEC 33014 include a step in their improvement process called: Develop action plan. But which actions should you include, and are you sure that these actions cover all aspects? We have performed a thorough study of the change strategy literature...

  5. Evaluation of strategies for end storage of high-level reactor fuel; Vurdering av strategier for sluttlagring av hoeyaktivt reaktorbrensel

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2001-07-01

    This report evaluates a national strategy for end-storage of used high-level reactor fuel from the research reactors at Kjeller and in Halden. This strategy presupposes that all the important phases in handling the high-level material, including temporary storage and deposition, are covered. The quantity of spent fuel from Norwegian reactors is quite small. In addition to the technological issues, ethical, environmental, safety and economical requirements are emphasized.

  6. Evidence-based evaluation of treatment strategy for multiple sclerosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    LI Meng-qiu

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available Objective To formulate the best treatment plan for multiple sclerosis (MS patients by evaluating the therapeutic efficacy and side effect of various evidence-based programs. Methods Key words were defined as multiple sclerosis, immunomodulatory therapy and therapy, etc. We searched MEDLINE, Cochrane Library, Wanfang data bases for Scientific Journals in China and National Knowledge Infrastructure for Chinese Scientific Journals Database. Additionally, we applied manual searching and screened out conference paper and academic dissertation, etc, from various references. After that we obtained and evaluated by Jadad scales on systematic reviews, randomized controlled trials, controlled clinical trials and observational study cases about glucocorticoids, plasmapheresis, intravenous immunoglobulin, IFN-β, glatiramer acetate, mitoxantrone, natalizumab, fingolimod. Results After screening, all seventeen selected resources included systematic reviews 6 articles, randomized controlled trials 7 articles, controlled clinical trials 2 articles, observational study cases 2 articles, among which fifteen articles were proved to be high quality (according to Jadad scoring system, five score 4, six score 5, four score 7, two chapters were judged to be low quality scoring 3. Finally, we summerize that: 1 The first choice of treatment for acute relapses is glucocorticoids and we suggest that plasmapheresis or intravenous immunoglobulin may be tried as an alternative therapy in acute MS relapse, especially in case of contraindications to intravenous methylprednisolone. 2 Immunomodulatory or immunosuppressive treatment (IFN-β, glatiramer acetate, mitoxantrone, natalizumab can be an option to prevent new relapses and progression of disability. 3 Fingolimod is an oral treatment for multiple sclerosis to improve treatment adherence. Conclusion Using evidence-based medicine methods can provide us best clinical evidence on MS treatment.

  7. Effective strategies in improving operating room case delays and cancellations at an academic medical center.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaye, Alan David; McDowell, Joseph L; Diaz, James H; Buras, Jay A; Young, Amy E; Urman, Richard D

    2015-01-01

    Traditionally, the operating room (OR) in an academic medical center has faced numerous challenges to effective clinical productivity, including additional missions of teaching and research. Level 1 trauma poses more challenges related to the need for additional specialized personnel in anesthesia, surgery, and nursing. The present investigation explores lessons learned in efficiency, teamwork, and data evaluation at a level 1 academic teaching facility. The months of July 2012, July 2013, and July 2014 were selected for this study. Multiple strategies were implemented through the Operating Room Committee during this time in an effort to reduce the number of OR delays and cancellations. Case cancellations decreased significantly over the three-year period, while delays remained relatively stable. In July 2012, 15.0% of cases were cancelled and 10.2% were delayed. Cancellations decreased to 6.3% in 2013 and to 5.9% in 2014. The total number of cases completed per month increased each year throughout the study, from 577 in 2012 to 649 in 2013 to 842 in 2014. These results are remarkable in comparison to the greater-than 20% cancellation rate recorded in 2005 when the current OR leadership team first assessed OR efficiency. An increase in the number of cases completed per month likely can be attributed to a reduction in the number of case cancellations. Increased efficiency allows for more operations to be performed, leading to increased profitability and an increased ability of hospitals to continue caring for patients. We advocate the implementation of a comprehensive multidisciplinary strategy for sustained improvement in OR efficiency and utilization.

  8. Improving Instruction Through Supervision. Evaluation Report 1977-78.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Contemporary Associates, Inc., Washington, DC.

    This evaluation report presents the accomplishments of the Improving Instruction Through Supervision Project since its implementation, with specific emphasis on 1977-78. The project was undertaken in Region VI of the District of Columbia Schools and was designed to improve the skills of administrators in supervising teachers. The program is based…

  9. Professionals’ Recommended Strategies to Improve Australian Adolescents’ Knowledge of Nutrition and Food Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sadegholvad, Sanaz; Yeatman, Heather; Parrish, Anne-Maree; Worsley, Anthony

    2017-01-01

    Background: Education and policy measures within schools are valuable strategies to promote health. This study explored views of experienced food-related educators, researchers and policy-makers regarding their recommended strategies to improve Australian adolescents’ knowledge of nutrition and food systems (N&FS). Methods: Semi-structured interviews were conducted with twenty-one experienced food-related experts from across Australia. Interviews were conducted either by telephone or face-to-face. Recorded interviews were transcribed verbatim and analyzed thematically. Results: Five central themes and five sub-themes were identified from food professionals’ suggestions for best strategies to improve adolescents’ knowledge of N&FS. The central themes included: (1) specific improvements in schools’ core curricula; (2) pre-service and in-service training of school teachers about N&FS; (3) training students to develop a critical mind about N&FS issues; (4) multidisciplinary collaborations to improve school-based N&FS education; and (5) a supportive N&FS education environment for students. Conclusion and implication: These findings provide a guide for curriculum developers, educational policy developers, and food educators to incorporate the suggested N&FS strategies into Australian education programs in order to improve Australian adolescents’ knowledge and skills of N&FS issues. The results of this investigation also may assist the development of international N&FS curricula guides. PMID:28783108

  10. Professionals' Recommended Strategies to Improve Australian Adolescents' Knowledge of Nutrition and Food Systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sadegholvad, Sanaz; Yeatman, Heather; Parrish, Anne-Maree; Worsley, Anthony

    2017-08-07

    Education and policy measures within schools are valuable strategies to promote health. This study explored views of experienced food-related educators, researchers and policy-makers regarding their recommended strategies to improve Australian adolescents' knowledge of nutrition and food systems (N&FS). Semi-structured interviews were conducted with twenty-one experienced food-related experts from across Australia. Interviews were conducted either by telephone or face-to-face. Recorded interviews were transcribed verbatim and analyzed thematically. Five central themes and five sub-themes were identified from food professionals' suggestions for best strategies to improve adolescents' knowledge of N&FS. The central themes included: (1) specific improvements in schools' core curricula; (2) pre-service and in-service training of school teachers about N&FS; (3) training students to develop a critical mind about N&FS issues; (4) multidisciplinary collaborations to improve school-based N&FS education; and (5) a supportive N&FS education environment for students. These findings provide a guide for curriculum developers, educational policy developers, and food educators to incorporate the suggested N&FS strategies into Australian education programs in order to improve Australian adolescents' knowledge and skills of N&FS issues. The results of this investigation also may assist the development of international N&FS curricula guides.

  11. The role of a blue ocean strategy on performance evaluation

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Mojtaba Tabari; Mehrdad Ziabari; Mona Radmard; Mahdiyeh Radmard

    2014-01-01

    .... In this way, an experimental test is conducted in the Resorts of Ramsar Green City located in the north of Iran, in which the factors of a blue ocean strategy influence on the dimensions of the BSC...

  12. Evaluation of Conservation Costs and Benefits of Developing Conservation Strategies

    OpenAIRE

    Olanipekun N. O.

    2014-01-01

    Due to environmental degradation, depletion and overexploitation of natural resources caused by human activities resulted in development of strategies for conservation of species, habitats and resource. Hence, this paper thus examines the advantages of financial investment and critical elements associated with creating strategies for the conservation of various species. Interdependent to one another are fish, wildlife species, natural habitats as well as natural resources. It rightly observed...

  13. Evaluation strategy of regenerative braking energy for supercapacitor vehicle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zou, Zhongyue; Cao, Junyi; Cao, Binggang; Chen, Wen

    2015-03-01

    In order to improve the efficiency of energy conversion and increase the driving range of electric vehicles, the regenerative energy captured during braking process is stored in the energy storage devices and then will be re-used. Due to the high power density of supercapacitors, they are employed to withstand high current in the short time and essentially capture more regenerative energy. The measuring methods for regenerative energy should be investigated to estimate the energy conversion efficiency and performance of electric vehicles. Based on the analysis of the regenerative braking energy system of a supercapacitor vehicle, an evaluation system for energy recovery in the braking process is established using USB portable data-acquisition devices. Experiments under various braking conditions are carried out. The results verify the higher efficiency of energy regeneration system using supercapacitors and the effectiveness of the proposed measurement method. It is also demonstrated that the maximum regenerative energy conversion efficiency can reach to 88%. Copyright © 2014 ISA. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Adapting Job Analysis Methodology to Improve Evaluation Practice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jenkins, Susan M.; Curtin, Patrick

    2006-01-01

    This article describes how job analysis, a method commonly used in personnel research and organizational psychology, provides a systematic method for documenting program staffing and service delivery that can improve evaluators' knowledge about program operations. Job analysis data can be used to increase evaluators' insight into how staffs…

  15. Dosimetric evaluation of three adaptive strategies for prostate cancer treatment including pelvic lymph nodes irradiation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cantin, Audrey; Gingras, Luc; Archambault, Louis, E-mail: louis.archambault@phy.ulaval.ca [Département de Physique, de génie Physique et d’optique et Centre de Recherche sur le Cancer, Université Laval, Québec, Québec G1V 0A6, Canada and Département de Radio-Oncologie et Centre de Recherche du CHU de Québec, CHU de Québec—Université Laval, 11 côte du Palais, Québec, Québec G1R 2J6 (Canada); Lachance, Bernard; Foster, William [Département de Radio-Oncologie et Centre de Recherche du CHU de Québec, CHU de Québec—Université Laval, 11 côte du Palais, Québec, Québec G1R 2J6 (Canada); Goudreault, Julie [Département de Radio-Oncologie et Centre de Recherche du CHU de Québec, CHU de Québec—Université Laval, 11 côte du Palais, Québec, Québec G1R 2J6, Canada and Département de Radio-Oncologie, CSSS de Gatineau–Hôpital de Gatineau, 909 Boulevard La Vérendrye, Gatineau, Québec J8P 7H2 (Canada)

    2015-12-15

    Purpose: The movements of the prostate relative to the pelvic lymph nodes during intensity-modulated radiation therapy treatment can limit margin reduction and affect the protection of the organs at risk (OAR). In this study, the authors performed an analysis of three adaptive treatment strategies that combine information from both bony and gold marker registrations. The robustness of those treatments against the interfraction prostate movements was evaluated. Methods: A retrospective study was conducted on five prostate cancer patients with 7–13 daily cone-beam CTs (CBCTs). The clinical target volumes (CTVs) consisting of pelvic lymph nodes, prostate, and seminal vesicles as well as the OARs were delineated on each CBCT and the initial CT. Three adaptive strategies were analyzed. Two of these methods relied on a two-step patient positioning at each fraction. First step: a bony registration was used to deliver the nodal CTV prescription. Second step: a gold marker registration was then used either to (1) complete the dose delivered to the prostate (complement); (2) or give almost the entire prescription to the prostate with a weak dose gradient between the targets to compensate for possible motions (gradient). The third method (COR) used a pool of precalculated plans based on images acquired at previous treatment fractions. At each new fraction, a plan is selected from that pool based on the daily position of prostate center-of-mass. The dosimetric comparison was conducted and results are presented with and without the systematic shift in the prostate position on the CT planning. The adaptive strategies were compared to the current clinical standard where all fractions are treated with the initial nonadaptive plan. Results: The minimum daily prostate D{sub 95%} is improved by 2%, 9%, and 6% for the complement, the gradient, and the COR approaches, respectively, compared to the nonadaptive method. The average nodal CTV D{sub 95%} remains constant across the

  16. Development of soft scaffolding strategy to improve student’s creative thinking ability in physics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nurulsari, Novinta; Abdurrahman; Suyatna, Agus

    2017-11-01

    Student’s creative thinking ability in physics learning can be developed through a learning experience. However, many students fail to gain a learning experience because of the lack of teacher roles in providing assistance to students when they face learning difficulties. In this study, a soft scaffolding strategy developed to improve student’s creative thinking ability in physics, especially in optical instruments. The methods used were qualitative and quantitative. The soft scaffolding strategy developed was called the 6E Soft Scaffolding Strategy where 6E stands for Explore real-life problems, Engage students with web technology, Enable experiment using analogies, Elaborate data through multiple representations, Encourage questioning, and Ensure the feedback. The strategy was applied to 60 students in secondary school through cooperative learning. As a comparison, conventional strategies were also applied to 60 students in the same school and grade. The result of the study showed that the soft scaffolding strategy was effective in improving student’s creative thinking ability.

  17. Decentralized 4D Trajectory Generation for UAVs Based on Improved Intrinsic Tau Guidance Strategy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zuqiang Yang

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available A decentralized four-dimensional (4D trajectory generation method for unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs, which uses the improved intrinsic tau gravity (tau-G guidance strategy, is presented in this paper. Based on general tau theory, the current tau-G strategy can only generate the 4D trajectory with zero initial and final velocities, which is not appropriate for decentralized applications. By adding an initial velocity to the intrinsic movement of tau-G strategy, the improved tau-G strategy can synchronously guide the position and velocity to the desired values at the arrival time. In our decentralized 4D trajectory generation method, the improved tau-G strategy is used to plan the 4D trajectories for UAVs. To deal with environmental uncertainty and communication limitations, the receding horizon optimization driven by both sampling time and conflict events is utilized to renew trajectory parameters continually. The simulation results of challenging time-constrained tasks demonstrate that the proposed method can efficiently provide safer and lower-cost 4D trajectories.

  18. A qualitative study of senior hospital managers' views on current and innovative strategies to improve hand hygiene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McInnes, Elizabeth; Phillips, Rosemary; Middleton, Sandy; Gould, Dinah

    2014-11-18

    Despite universal recognition of the importance of hand hygiene in reducing the incidence of healthcare associated infections, health care workers' compliance with best practice has been sub-optimal. Senior hospital managers have responsibilities for implementing patient safety initiatives and are therefore ideally placed to provide suggestions for improving strategies to increase hand hygiene compliance. This is an under-researched area, accordingly the aim of this study was to identify senior hospital managers' views on current and innovative strategies to improve hand hygiene compliance. Qualitative design comprising face-to-face interviews with thirteen purposively sampled senior managers at a major teaching and referral hospital in Sydney, Australia. Data were analysed thematically. Seven themes emerged: culture change starts with leaders, refresh and renew the message, connect the five moments to the whole patient journey, actionable audit results, empower patients, reconceptualising non-compliance and start using the hammer. To strengthen hand hygiene programmes, strategies based on the five moments of hand hygiene should be tailored to specific roles and settings and take into account the whole patient journey including patient interactions with clinical and non-clinical staff. Senior clinical and non-clinical leaders should visibly champion and mandate best practice initiatives and articulate that hand hygiene non-compliance is culturally and professionally unacceptable to the organization. Strategies that included a disciplinary component and which conceptualise hand hygiene non-compliance as a patient safety error may be worth evaluating in terms of staff acceptability and effectiveness.

  19. Patient Feedback as a Quality Improvement Strategy in an Acute Care, Inpatient Unit: An Investigation of Outcome and Readmission Rates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reese, Robert J; Duncan, Barry L; Kodet, Jonathan; Brown, Holly M; Meiller, Carolyn; Farook, Minnah W; Lengerich, Alex J; Vasilj, Igor; Hong, Sang-Hee; Bohanske, Robert T

    2017-07-13

    High psychiatric readmission rates continue while evidence suggests that care is not perceived by patients as "patient centered." Research has focused on aftercare strategies with little attention to the inpatient treatment itself as an intervention to reduce readmission rates. Quality improvement strategies based on patient-centered care may offer an alternative. We evaluated outcomes and readmission rates using a benchmarking methodology with a naturalistic data set from an inpatient psychiatric facility (N = 2,247) that used a quality-improvement strategy called systematic patient feedback. Benchmarks were constructed using randomized clinical trials (RCTs) from inpatient treatment for depression, RCTs from patient feedback in outpatient settings, and national data on psychiatric hospital readmission rates. A systematic patient feedback system, the Partners for Change Outcome Management System (PCOMS), was used. Overall pre-post effect sizes were d = 1.33 and d = 1.38 for patients diagnosed with a mood disorder. These effect sizes were statistically equivalent to RCT benchmarks for feedback and depression. Readmission rates were 6.1% (30 days), 9.5% (60 days), and 16.4% (180 days), all lower than national benchmarks. We also found that patients who achieved clinically significant treatment outcomes were less likely to be readmitted. We tentatively suggest that a focus on real-time patient outcomes as well as care that is "patient centered" may provide a path toward lower readmission rates in addition to other evidence-based strategies after discharge. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2017 APA, all rights reserved).

  20. Assessing the improvements in the newborn screening strategy for cystic fibrosis in the Balearic Islands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bauça, Josep Miquel; Morell-Garcia, Daniel; Vila, Magdalena; Pérez, Gerardo; Heine-Suñer, Damián; Figuerola, Joan

    2015-04-01

    Newborn screening strategies for cystic fibrosis (CF) are run worldwide, and aim at the early detection of the disorder to significantly improve the quality of life. Elevated levels of immunoreactive trypsinogen (IRT) represent a high likelihood for the screened child to be affected with CF. However, the specificity of IRT is low. The objective of this study was to assess the screening program in the Balearic Islands during the past 14 years. We evaluated all results of the screening program after 14 years, by considering all changes in the protocol and assessing the number of positive samples, the mutations detected, the number of sweat tests performed, the incidence of CF and the presence of false-negative cases. Despite a great variability among the different Balearic Islands, the global incidence of CF was 1:6059 for the 14 years assessed. The incidence in the smaller islands is about 5 times higher than in Majorca (1:2376 versus 1:10,613). After different changes in the protocol, an IRT cut-off value of 60 ng/mL was established. The two most common mutations are ΔF508 and G542X, in accordance with other geographical regions. The changes in the protocol helped reduce the number of sweat tests performed without any increase in the false-negative rate. Copyright © 2015 The Canadian Society of Clinical Chemists. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. IMPROVING READING COMPREHENSION THROUGH DIRECTED READING-THINKING ACTIVITY (DRTA STRATEGY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Santi Erliana

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available This paper highlights the findings of a study which was undertaken at Islamic State College of Palangka Raya. The aim of the study was to describe how the Directed Reading Thinking Activity (henceforth DR-TA strategy can improve reading comprehension. The data were taken from observation, field notes, questionnaire, and achievement test. The result reveals that the DR-TA not only improves students’ comprehension but also increases their motivation in learning. Keywords: comprehension, DRTA, expository, reading skill, text

  2. Do Primary Care Provider Strategies Improve Patient Participation in Colorectal Cancer Screening?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baxter, Nancy N; Sutradhar, Rinku; Li, Qing; Daly, Corinne; Honein-AbouHaidar, Gladys N; Richardson, Devon P; Del Giudice, Lisa; Tinmouth, Jill; Paszat, Lawrence; Rabeneck, Linda

    2017-04-01

    Screening rates for colorectal cancer (CRC) remain suboptimal. The impact of provider strategies to enhance screening participation in the population is uncertain. The objective of this study was to determine the effect of provider strategies to increase screening in a single-payer system. A population-based survey was conducted in primary care providers (PCPs) linked to patients using administrative data in Ontario, Canada. Patients were due for CRC screening from April 2012 to March 2013. Patients were followed up until 31 March 2014. We determined time to become up-to-date with CRC screening. Cox proportional hazards models examined the association between PCP strategies and uptake of screening, adjusted for physician and patient factors. A total of 717 PCPs and their 147,834 rostered patients due for CRC screening were included. Most physicians employed strategies to enhance screening participation, including electronic medical record use, reminders, generation of lists, audit and feedback reports, or designating staff responsible for screening. No single strategy was strongly associated with screening. For those >1 year overdue, a systematic approach to generate lists of patients overdue for screening was weakly associated with screening uptake (hazard ratio (HR)=1.14, 95% CI: 1.03-1.26, P=0.04 >5 years overdue vs. <1 year overdue). The use of multiple PCP strategies was associated with screening participation (HR=1.27, 95% CI: 1.16-1.39, P<0.0001 for PCPs using 4-5 vs. 0-1 strategies). Practice-based strategies were self-reported. In practice, while individual PCP strategies have little effect, the use of multiple strategies to enhance screening appears to improve CRC screening uptake in patients.

  3. [Guidance of FDA risk evaluation and mitigation strategy and enlightenment to drug risk management of post-marketing Chinese medicine].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Yuanyuan; Xie, Yanming

    2011-10-01

    The FDA risk evaluation and mitigation strategy (REMS) aims to drugs or biological products known or potential serious risk management. Analysis with the example of the content of the Onsolis REMS named FOCOS. Our country can be reference for the analysis of relevant experience and establish a scientific evaluation mechanism, strengthen the drug risk consciousness, promote the rational drug use, organic combined with the before-marketing and post-marketing evaluation of traditional Chinese medicine, and promote the evaluation of risk management of the drug development and improvement.

  4. Improving SCATS Operation during Congestion Periods Using Internal/External Traffic Metering Strategy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shahriar Afandizadeh Zargari

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Traffic metering is one of the effective strategies of preventing gridlock at urban signalized intersections during oversaturated conditions. This strategy could be implemented by adjusting signal timing schemes of the connected intersections of congested network in dynamic setting. This paper demonstrates the benefits of internal/external traffic metering strategy on a real case study in Tehran, the capital of Iran. For this purpose, the model outputs have been considered as input to set of SCATS scenarios for signal timing. In each test case the system is forced to use plans obtained from the model instead of using common built-in plans that had been used before, and the performance is measured using the VISSIM simulator to show differences. The results show significant improvement in network average travel time when using internal/external traffic metering strategy. Additionally, the average queue lengths are maintained near the optimal level since the model utilizes upstream arterial capacity.

  5. An Improved Modulation Strategy for the Three-Phase Z-Source Inverters (ZSIs)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Abdelhakim, Ahmed; Davari, Pooya; Blaabjerg, Frede

    2017-01-01

    , as the added ST pulses are inserted inside the zero states. Hence, in this digest, an improved modulation strategy is proposed to enhance the performance of the three-phase ZSIs, including all the other improved topologies. The proposed modulation strategy, which is called high-boost-based modified space...... vector modulation (HB-MSVM), utilizes one ST pulse per switching cycle and effectively reduces the number of commutations of the switches compared to the VSI, where one switch is continuously conducting for one-third the fundamental period....... the performance of the so-called ZSI since it has been proposed in 2003, and many modifications have been introduced accordingly. These modifications include the structure of the ZSI, i.e. modifying the topology itself, and its modulation. From the modulation prospective, all the modulation strategies of the ZSI...

  6. Effectiveness of a multifaceted strategy to improve the appropriateness of cesarean sections.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calvo, Andrés; Campillo, Carlos; Juan, Miguel; Roig, Catalina; Hermoso, Juan Carlos; Cabeza, Pedro J

    2009-01-01

    The objective was to assess the effectiveness of a multifaceted strategy for improving the appropriateness of indications for cesarean sections in two public Spanish hospitals. A multifaceted strategy was used including the adoption of a consensus protocol with indications for emergency and prescheduled cesarean sections, continuing education and improvement, and the correction of deficiencies in organization. A pre and post-intervention design was applied. The overall appropriateness rates for emergency cesarean sections increased from 68.3 to 84.3% in Son Llatzer Hospital, and from 80.0 to 92.0% in the hospital in Menorca. The overall cesarean section rates at the end of the post-intervention period decreased (not statistically significant) from 17.5 to 15.8% and from 29.0 to 22.0%, respectively. The multifaceted strategy applied seems to be effective in increasing the appropriateness of cesarean sections and possibly in decreasing the cesarean section rate.

  7. Improved Control Strategy for T-type Isolated DC/DC Converters

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Liu, Dong; Deng, Fujin; Wang, Yanbo

    2017-01-01

    . Under the proposed strategy, the primary circulating current flows through the auxiliary switches (metal–oxide–semiconductor field-effect transistors) instead of their body diodes in free-wheeling periods. Such feature can reduce conduction losses, thereby improving the efficiency of T-type isolated DC......T-type isolated DC/DC converters have recently attracted attention due to their numerous advantages, including few components, low cost, and symmetrical operation of transformers. This study proposes an improved control strategy for increasing the efficiency of T-type isolated DC/DC converters....../DC converters. The operation principles and performances of T-type isolated DC/DC converters under the proposed control strategy are analyzed in detail and verified through the simulation and experimental results....

  8. Improved forage strategies for high-yielding dairy cows in Vietnam : report of a workshop

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wouters, A.P.; Lee, van der J.

    2013-01-01

    This report presents results of the workshop "Improved forage strategies for high-yielding dairy cows in Vietnam" which was held with Vietnamese stakeholders on January 17-18, 2013 in Ho Chi Minh City as part of the project "Forage and Grass Production for Dairy Development in Vietnam" funded by the

  9. Improving prediction models with new markers: A comparison of updating strategies

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    D. Nieboer (Daan); Y. Vergouwe (Yvonne); D. Ankerst (Donna); M.J. Roobol-Bouts (Monique); E.W. Steyerberg (Ewout)

    2016-01-01

    textabstractBackground: New markers hold the promise of improving risk prediction for individual patients. We aimed to compare the performance of different strategies to extend a previously developed prediction model with a new marker. Methods: Our motivating example was the extension of a risk

  10. Implicit strategies to improve work and well-being: the social dimensions of organizational excellence

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zwetsloot, G.I.J.M.; Scheppingen, A.R. van

    2010-01-01

    Significant improvements in health and well-being can be created as implicit by-products of activities from agents other than health professionals, with each of these agents having their own prime (i.e. parallel) interests. For this reason, more relevant strategies and interventions for promoting

  11. Improving Reading Comprehension Skills with Children's Books through Metacognitive Strategy: The Turkish Context

    Science.gov (United States)

    Çer, Erkan; Sahin, Ertugrul

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this study was to explore the effect of metacognitive strategy in improving reading comprehension skills through children's literature of literary quality. A quasi-experimental study was carried out in a private secondary school in a city located Middle Black Sea region of Turkey. Two classes were randomly chosen as the study group, and…

  12. Serotonin Transporter Knockout Rats Show Improved Strategy Set-Shifting and Reduced Latent Inhibition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nonkes, Lourens J. P.; van de Vondervoort, Ilse I. G. M.; de Leeuw, Mark J. C.; Wijlaars, Linda P.; Maes, Joseph H. R.; Homberg, Judith R.

    2012-01-01

    Behavioral flexibility is a cognitive process depending on prefrontal areas allowing adaptive responses to environmental changes. Serotonin transporter knockout (5-HTT[superscript -/-]) rodents show improved reversal learning in addition to orbitofrontal cortex changes. Another form of behavioral flexibility, extradimensional strategy set-shifting…

  13. Detective Questions: A Strategy for Improving Inference-Making in Children With Mild Disabilities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiménez-Fernández, Gracia

    2015-01-01

    One of the most frequent problems in reading comprehension is the difficulty in making inferences from the text, especially for students with mild disabilities (i.e., children with learning disabilities or with high-functioning autism). It is essential, therefore, that educators include the teaching of reading strategies to improve their students'…

  14. Team Strategies for School Improvement: The Ongoing Development of the Professional Learning Community

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elbousty, Youness; Bratt, Kirstin

    2010-01-01

    The examination of a large, urban, East Coast high school provides an enlightening chapter in the implementation and validation of a professional learning community (PLC) as a strategy for school improvement. The teachers of this East Coast school were accustomed to working in isolation, and the students demonstrated numerous areas of academic…

  15. [Better antibiotic use in complicated urinary tract infections; multicentre cluster randomised trial of 2 improvement strategies

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Spoorenberg, V.; Hulscher, M.E.J.L.; Geskus, R.B.; Reijke, T.M. de; Opmeer, B.C.; Prins, J.M.; Geerlings, S.E.

    2016-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To compare the effectiveness of two strategies to improve antibiotic use in patients with a complicated urinary tract infection. DESIGN: Multicentre cluster randomised unblinded trial. METHOD: The departments of Internal Medicine and Urology from 19 hospitals in the Netherlands took part

  16. Improving Push Belt CVT Efficiency by Control Strategies Based on New Variator Wear Insight

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van der Laan, Maaike; van Drogen, Mark; Brandsma, Arjen

    2004-01-01

    Developments in clamping force control for the push belt Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) aim at increased efficiency in combination with improved robustness. Current control strategies attempt to prevent macro slip between elements and pulleys at all times for maximum robustness. In order

  17. Food for rumination : developing novel feeding strategies to improve the welfare of veal calves

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Webb, L.E.

    2014-01-01

    Summary of thesis entitled: “Food for Rumination – Developing novel feeding strategies to improve the welfare of veal calves”, Laura Webb Veal calves are typically fed high levels of milk replacer supplemented with solid feed, which tends to contain a relatively small roughage

  18. Human milk fortification strategies for improved in-hospital growth of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Human milk fortification strategies for improved in-hospital growth of preterm infants. JE Kempa* and FAM Wenholda. aDepartment of Human Nutrition, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa. *Corresponding author, email: kemridge@absamail.co.za. Human milk is the preferred feed for preterm infants, yet it may need ...

  19. Evaluating surveillance strategies for the early detection of low pathogenicity avian influenza infections.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arianna Comin

    Full Text Available In recent years, the early detection of low pathogenicity avian influenza (LPAI viruses in poultry has become increasingly important, given their potential to mutate into highly pathogenic viruses. However, evaluations of LPAI surveillance have mainly focused on prevalence and not on the ability to act as an early warning system. We used a simulation model based on data from Italian LPAI epidemics in turkeys to evaluate different surveillance strategies in terms of their performance as early warning systems. The strategies differed in terms of sample size, sampling frequency, diagnostic tests, and whether or not active surveillance (i.e., routine laboratory testing of farms was performed, and were also tested under different epidemiological scenarios. We compared surveillance strategies by simulating within-farm outbreaks. The output measures were the proportion of infected farms that are detected and the farm reproduction number (R(h. The first one provides an indication of the sensitivity of the surveillance system to detect within-farm infections, whereas R(h reflects the effectiveness of outbreak detection (i.e., if detection occurs soon enough to bring an epidemic under control. Increasing the sampling frequency was the most effective means of improving the timeliness of detection (i.e., it occurs earlier, whereas increasing the sample size increased the likelihood of detection. Surveillance was only effective in preventing an epidemic if actions were taken within two days of sampling. The strategies were not affected by the quality of the diagnostic test, although performing both serological and virological assays increased the sensitivity of active surveillance. Early detection of LPAI outbreaks in turkeys can be achieved by increasing the sampling frequency for active surveillance, though very frequent sampling may not be sustainable in the long term. We suggest that, when no LPAI virus is circulating yet and there is a low risk of virus

  20. Integrating empowerment evaluation and quality improvement to achieve healthcare improvement outcomes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wandersman, Abraham; Alia, Kassandra Ann; Cook, Brittany; Ramaswamy, Rohit

    2015-01-01

    While the body of evidence-based healthcare interventions grows, the ability of health systems to deliver these interventions effectively and efficiently lags behind. Quality improvement approaches, such as the model for improvement, have demonstrated some success in healthcare but their impact has been lessened by implementation challenges. To help address these challenges, we describe the empowerment evaluation approach that has been developed by programme evaluators and a method for its application (Getting To Outcomes (GTO)). We then describe how GTO can be used to implement healthcare interventions. An illustrative healthcare quality improvement example that compares the model for improvement and the GTO method for reducing hospital admissions through improved diabetes care is described. We conclude with suggestions for integrating GTO and the model for improvement. PMID:26178332

  1. Definition and evaluation of product configurator development strategies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Haug, Anders; Hvam, Lars; Mortensen, Niels Henrik

    2012-01-01

    Product configurators represent one of the most successful applications of artificial intelligence principles. Product configurators are a subtype of software-based expert systems with a focus on the creation of product specifications. The use of product configurators has resulted in many positive...... for the development of product configurators. The relevance of the defined strategies is supported by seven named case studies....

  2. Evaluation Methods Basis of Strategy Development Effectiveness of the Enterprise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zotova, Anna S.; Kandrashina, Elena A.; Ivliev, Andrey D.; Charaeva, Marina V.

    2016-01-01

    The urgency to study the problem is caused by the necessity to make management decisions in terms of reducing goods life cycle, reducing profitability of production, increasing speed of technological progress. In this context, this article aims to identify and elaborate the tools for integrated diagnostic of strategy efficiency, taking into…

  3. Socioeconomic evaluation of broad-scale land management strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lisa K. Crone; Richard W. Haynes

    2001-01-01

    This paper examines the socioeconomic effects of alternative management strategies for Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management lands in the interior Columbia basin. From a broad-scale perspective, there is little impact or variation between alternatives in terms of changes in total economic activity or social conditions in the region. However, adopting a finer...

  4. Applied strategies for improving patient safety: a comprehensive process to improve care in rural and frontier communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Westfall, John M; Fernald, Douglas H; Staton, Elizabeth W; VanVorst, Rebecca; West, David; Pace, Wilson D

    2004-01-01

    Medical errors and patient safety have gained increasing attention throughout all areas of medical care. Understanding patient safety in rural settings is crucial for improving care in rural communities. To describe a system to decrease medical errors and improve care in rural and frontier primary care offices. Applied Strategies for Improving Patient Safety (ASIPS) was a demonstration project designed to collect and analyze medical error reports and use these reports to develop and implement interventions aimed at decreasing errors. ASIPS participants were clinicians and staff in 2 practice-based research networks: the Colorado Research Network (CaReNet) and the High Plains Research Network (HPRN). This paper describes ASIPS in HPRN. Fourteen HPRN practices with a total of 150 clinicians and staff have participated in ASIPS. Participants have submitted 128 reports. Diagnostic tests were involved in 26% of events; medication errors appeared in 20% of events. Communication errors were reported in 72%. Two learning groups developed "Principles for Process Improvement" for medication errors and diagnostic testing errors. Several safety "alerts" were issued to improve care, and 2 interventions were implemented to decrease errors. A safe and secure reporting system that relies on voluntary reporting from clinicians and staff can be successfully implemented in rural primary care settings. Information from reports can be used to identify processes that can be improved.

  5. Evaluation of a practice-development initiative to improve breastfeeding rates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnes, Margaret; Cox, Julie; Doyle, Bronwyn; Reed, Rachel

    2010-01-01

    The benefits of breastfeeding for infant, mother, family, and community are well recognized, and increasing breastfeeding rates is considered an important health-promotion strategy. Improving breastfeeding knowledge and practice among individuals caring for breastfeeding women is considered an important aspect of this strategy. The practice-development initiative described in this article aimed to improve hospital-based breastfeeding rates through the implementation of The Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding. The initiative included the development and implementation of an education program aimed at changing and improving breastfeeding practices. The program was evaluated in three ways: changes in breastfeeding rates at hospital discharge; client preparation for breastfeeding and satisfaction during the postnatal period; and staff knowledge and skills.

  6. ICT Strategies and Tools for the Improvement of Instructional Supervision. The Virtual Supervision

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cano, Esteban Vazquez; Garcia, Ma. Luisa Sevillano

    2013-01-01

    This study aims to evaluate and analyze strategies, proposals, and ICT tools to promote a paradigm shift in educational supervision that enhances the schools of this century involved not only in teaching-face learning, but e-learning and blended learning. Traditional models of educational supervision do not guarantee adequate supervision of the…

  7. Innovative Instructional Strategies and Improved Math Learning among Grades 2 to 6 Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiong, Ia Vang

    2010-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of information processing and cognitive learning instructional strategies that were succinctly prescribed, scripted, and followed through in the Beyond the Basic Facts math program, which was uniformly implemented in a large, urban school district in the Central Valley of California in…

  8. Research on Improved Control Strategy for STATCOM Based on Virtual Matrix Method

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wang Xudong

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Fast and accurate detection of reactive current is the precondition for the realization of static synchronous compensator (STATCOM reactive power compensation and harmonic suppression. Aiming at deviation and delay of the traditional reactive current detection algorithm with phase-locked loop (PLL and low-pass filter (LPF of STATCOM, a novel improved reactive current detection algorithm without PLL is proposed, in which the virtual matrix (VM is built to replace the original PLL, and improved current average value filter is used to realize the function of LPF, so as to improve the real-time performance and robustness of reactive current detection. The realization process of VM detection method is derived in this paper, and improved control strategy for STATCOM is designed based on the VM detection method. Simulation analysis of the proposed detection algorithm and control strategy is conducted in Matlab platform so as to verify the correctness and effectiveness of the control strategy. The VM detection has the advantages of simple structure, fast response and easy for digital realization, which provides reference for the improvement of reactive power compensation precision for STATCOM.

  9. A Free-Piston Linear Generator Control Strategy for Improving Output Power

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chi Zhang

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a control strategy to improve the output power for a single-cylinder two-stroke free-piston linear generator (FPLG. The comprehensive simulation model of this FPLG is established and the operation principle is introduced. The factors that affect the output power are analyzed theoretically. The characteristics of the piston motion are studied. Considering the different features of the piston motion respectively in acceleration and deceleration phases, a ladder-like electromagnetic force control strategy is proposed. According to the status of the linear electric machine, the reference profile of the electromagnetic force is divided into four ladder-like stages during one motion cycle. The piston motions, especially the dead center errors, are controlled by regulating the profile of the electromagnetic force. The feasibility and advantage of the proposed control strategy are verified through comparison analyses with two conventional control strategies via MatLab/Simulink. The results state that the proposed control strategy can improve the output power by around 7–10% with the same fuel cycle mass.

  10. Instructional scaffolding to improve students' skills in evaluating clinical literature.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dawn, Stefani; Dominguez, Karen D; Troutman, William G; Bond, Rucha; Cone, Catherine

    2011-05-10

    To implement and assess the effectiveness of an activity to teach pharmacy students to critically evaluate clinical literature using instructional scaffolding and a Clinical Trial Evaluation Rubric. The literature evaluation activity centered on a single clinical research article and involved individual, small group, and large group instruction, with carefully structured, evidence-based scaffolds and support materials centered around 3 educational themes: (1) the reader's awareness of text organization, (2) contextual/background information and vocabulary, and (3) questioning, prompting, and self-monitoring (metacognition). Students initially read the article, scored it using the rubric, and wrote an evaluation. Students then worked individually using a worksheet to identify and define 4 to 5 vocabulary/concept knowledge gaps. They then worked in small groups and as a class to further improve their skills. Finally, they assessed the same article using the rubric and writing a second evaluation. Students' rubric scores for the article decreased significantly from a mean pre-activity score of 76.7% to a post-activity score of 61.7%, indicating that their skills in identifying weaknesses in the article's study design had improved. Use of instructional scaffolding in the form of vocabulary supports and the Clinical Trial Evaluation Rubric improved students' ability to critically evaluate a clinical study compared to lecture-based coursework alone.

  11. A New V2G Control Strategy for Load Factor Improvement Using Smoothing Technique

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    CHANHOM, P.

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available This paper proposes a new vehicle-to-grid (V2G control strategy for improving the load factor in the power network. To operate the proposed strategy, the available storage capacity of the PEVs’ batteries is considered as a battery energy storage system (BESS for charging and discharging an amount of power corresponding to the V2G power command. Due to the remarkable advantages of the technique so-called simple moving average, it is selected for applying in the proposed V2G control strategy. In this research, for investigating the load factor improvement, the essential data including the daily-load profiles with 7-day and 14-day periods are used for the 3 studied cases. These 3 studied cases present the power network with variation of the PEVs locations for describing the PEVs usage and charging or discharging behavior. The performance of the proposed strategy is simulated and verified by the MATPOWER software. The simulation results show that the load factors of the 3 studied cases are improved. Moreover, the encouragement of energy arbitrage for the PEVs owners is also discussed in this paper.

  12. Joyful learning strategy using game method of treasure clue to improve reading comprehension skill

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vina Anggia Nastitie Ariawan

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available The objectives of this research are (1 to describe steps in the implementation of joyful learning strategy using game method of treasure clue to improve reading comprehension skill for the fourth grade students of elementary school; (2 to improve reading comprehension skill for the fourth grade students of elementary school by implementing joyful learning strategy using game method of treasure clue. This research is collaborative Classroom Action Research (CAR and implemented within two cycles. Each cycle implemented within two meetings. This research impelemented at one of elementary school in Kuningan. Subjects of this research are 31 students of the fourth grade of elementary school. Techniques of collecting data were observation, interview, an document analysis. Data were analyzed using thematic analysis meanwhile data were validated using triangulation, member checking, and reflectivity. The results of this research show that joyful learning strategy using game method of treasure clue can increase students’ reading comprehension skill . The results proved by the increase of reading comprehension outcomes in each cycles. Passing grade percentage of students result in the first cycle is 73,86% and in the second cycle is 87,56%. Therefore, students’ learning outcomes has passed performance indicator research of 85%. The conclusion of this research is the implementation of joyful learning strategy using game method of treasure clue can improve reading comprehension skill for the fourth grade students of elementary school.

  13. Improved control strategy for the three-phase grid-connected inverter

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yao, Zhilei; Xiao, Lan; Guerrero, Josep M.

    2015-01-01

    An improved control strategy for the three-phase grid-connected inverter with space vector pulse width modulation (SVPWM) is proposed. When the grid current contains harmonics, the d- and q-axis grid currents will be interacted, and then the waveform quality of the grid current will be poorer. As...... strategy, the grid-connected inverter with the improved control strategy has high waveform quality of the grid current, small ripple power, and fast dynamic response.......An improved control strategy for the three-phase grid-connected inverter with space vector pulse width modulation (SVPWM) is proposed. When the grid current contains harmonics, the d- and q-axis grid currents will be interacted, and then the waveform quality of the grid current will be poorer....... As the reference output voltage cannot directly reflect the change of the reference grid current, the dynamic response of the grid-connected inverter is slow. In order to solve the aforementioned problems, the d- and q-axis grid currents in the decoupled components of the grid current controller can be substituted...

  14. The future of nematology: integration of new and improved management strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, P A

    1993-09-01

    The potential for managing plant-parasitic nenlatodes by combining two or more control strategies in an integrated program is examined. Advantages of this approach include the use of partially effective strategies and protection of highly effective ones vulnerable from nematode adaptation or environmental risk. Strategies can be combined sequentially from season to season or applied simultaneously. Programs that have several strategies available but that are limited in the true integration of control components are used as examples of current management procedures and the potential for their improvement. These include potato cyst nematodes in northern Europe, soybean cyst nematode in North Carolina, and root-knot nematodes on vegetable and field crops in California. A simplified model of the impact of component strategies on the nematode damage function indicates the potential for combining control measures with different efficacies to give acceptable nematode population reduction and crop protection. The likelihood for additive, synergistic, or antagonistic effects from combining strategies is considered with respect to the biological target and component compatibility.

  15. Sustaining and Improving Study Abroad Experiences Through Comparative Evaluation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johanson, Linda S

    Researchers have related participation in study abroad experiences to many positive outcomes for nursing students; however, educators are faced with the task of not only developing meaningful study abroad opportunities but sustaining and improving them as well. Educators can evaluate repeat study abroad programs by comparing experiences, looking for trends, and conjecturing rationales. To illustrate this process, an example of a study abroad opportunity that has been repeated over 11 years is presented. The first six years have been compared to the most recent five years, revealing three categories of change for evaluation and the resulting course improvements.

  16. Value for money of changing healthcare services? Economic evaluation of quality improvement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Severens, J

    2003-01-01

    

 There are many instances of perceived or real inefficiencies in health service delivery. Both healthcare providers and policy makers need to know the impact and cost of applying strategies to change the behaviour of individuals or organisations. Quality improvement or implementation research is concerned with evaluating the methods of behavioural change. Addressing inefficiencies in healthcare services raises a series of issues, beginning with how inefficiency itself should be defined. The basic concepts of cost analysis and economic evaluations are explained and a model for working through the economic issues of quality improvement is discussed. This model combines the costs and benefits of corrected inefficiency with the costs and degree of behavioural change achieved by a quality improvement method in the policy maker's locality. It shows why it may not always be cost effective for policy makers to address suboptimal behaviour. Both the interpretation of quality improvement research findings and their local application need careful consideration. The limited availability of applicable quality improvement research may make it difficult to provide robust advice on the value for money of many behavioural quality improvement strategies. PMID:14532369

  17. RAL model as a theoretical basis for the development of evaluation methods of manufacturing strategy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dušan Malindžák

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available This paper deals with methods for evaluating of manufacturing strategy and company competitiveness, especially for multicriteriamatrix-based evaluation. It shows the lack of quantitative evaluation methods based on mathematical approaches. The articledescribes possible ways of problem resolving outlined by analogy evaluation and calculation with the assistance of the newly proposedanalytical methods by using of mathematical patterns.

  18. Writing Across the Curriculum: Strategies to Improve the Writing Skills of Nursing Students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hawks, Sharon J; Turner, Kathleen M; Derouin, Anne L; Hueckel, Rémi M; Leonardelli, Adrianne K; Oermann, Marilyn H

    2015-11-04

    Writing across the curriculum (WAC) is a strategy in which writing instruction occurs in classes outside of composition, literature, and other English courses. This literature review was conducted to identify and synthesize the peer-reviewed literature about WAC in nursing education. The team performed searches of MEDLINE (PubMed), CINAHL Plus With Full Text, and ERIC for articles published between January 2003 and April 2014. A combination of Medical Subject Heading terms (or equivalent) and keywords were used to create the database search strategies. There were 48 articles that discussed WAC. Most of the papers described writing courses in nursing programs, strategies to teach writing to nursing students, and writing activities or assignments within nursing courses. High-level evidence examining the impact of writing strategies and exercises in courses and occurring across the curriculum was lacking. Only 18 (37.5%) of these papers were evaluative; most of the databased articles were either author observations or perceptions of changes in students' writing ability, or low-level research studies. Strategies, assignments, and courses intended to promote writing skills of nursing students were documented in this literature review; however, further evaluation is needed to determine which are most effective. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  19. Evaluating soft strategies for clean-air compliance

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jackson, T.M.; Stansberry, C.J. Jr.; Estes, S. (Tennessee Valley Authority, Chattanooga (United States)); Le, K.D.; Boyle, R.F.; Nguyen, M.T.

    1993-04-01

    This article describes the efforts of the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) to minimize expenditures, keep rates competitive, encourage local economic growth and conform to emission legislation. The topics of the article include the impact of the Clean Air Act on TVA, their phase one compliance strategy, system operation issues, Wescouger (TM) emission monitoring module, cost/benefit of emission dispatch, impact on pumped-storage utilization and transaction-pricing philosophy.

  20. Modern approach to improving the math evaluation process

    OpenAIRE

    Atanasova-Pacemska, Tatjana; Jovanovska, Dobrila

    2015-01-01

    Checking and evaluation are someof the most important elements of the learning process, because they provide information to different factors about the extent to which students achieved the previously set educational standards. This paper presents a proposal how to improve the evaluation process in mathematics by using standardized electronic tests created by multimedia software Wondershare quizcreator software. For creating electronic tests, there are various electronic tools to cho...

  1. Strategy of Quality Improvement of Pond Shrimp Post Harvest Management (Penaeus monodon Fabricius in Mahakam Delta (Case Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andi Noor Asikin

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Mahakam Delta area, which is situated in Kutai Kartanegara Regency, has become a pond center that gives a significant contribution to shrimp export of East Kalimantan Province. Pond-produced shrimps, however, do not always accord to the intention of cold storage companies at expected price. The companies even sometimes reject the request due to poor quality of the product. The decreasing shrimp quality may be due to maintenance process by the pond farmers as well as the improper collectors. In the other hand, importing countries have decided more and more restricted requirements for the imported fishing products. This study was held in Muara Jawa, Anggana, and Muara Badak Districts using techniques of data collection of in-depth interview with twelve respondents. In order to improve shrimp quality, farmers or the producers have to formulate a strategy towards the improvement of the post harvest shrimps from the pond using an Analytical Hierarchy Process (AHP. Results of the AHP consist of as follows: (1 application of pond shrimp post harvest technology and improvement of facilities and accommodation that support the quality improvement of the pond shrimps, (2 human resource quality improvement of pond farmers, collectors, and field instructors, (3 development of pond culture by applying best practices principle and local policies in order to improve the quality of the pond shrimps, and (4 improvement of interagency coordination, monitoring, and evaluation to enhance the pond shrimp quality

  2. Financing strategies to improve essential public health equalization and its effects in China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Li; Sun, Li; Wen, Liankui; Zhang, Huyang; Li, Chenyang; Hanson, Kara; Fang, Hai

    2016-12-01

    In 2009, China launched a health reform to promote the equalization of national essential public health services package (NEPHSP). The present study aimed to describe the financing strategies and mechanisms to improve access to public health for all, identify the strengths and weaknesses of the different approaches, and showed evidence on equity improvement among different regions. We reviewed the relevant literatures and identified 208 articles after screening and quality assessment and conducted six key informants' interviews. Secondary data on national and local government health expenditures, NEPHSP coverage and health indicators in 2003-2014 were collected, descriptive and equity analyses were used. Before 2009, the government subsidy to primary care institutions (PCIs) were mainly used for basic construction and a small part of personnel expenses. Since 2009, the new funds for NEPHSP have significantly expanded service coverage and population coverage. These funds have been allocated by central, provincial, municipal and county governments at different proportions in China's tax distribution system. Due to the fiscal transfer payment, the Central Government allocated more subsides to less-developed western regions and all the funds were managed in a specific account. Several types of payment methods have been adopted including capitation, pay for performance (P4P), pay for service items, global budget and public health voucher, to address issues from both the supply and demand sides. The equalization of NEPHSP did well through the establishment of health records, systematic care of children and maternal women, etc. Our data showed that the gap between the eastern, central and western regions narrowed. However the coverage for migrants was still low and performance was needed improving in effectiveness of managing patients with chronic diseases. The delivery of essential public health services was highly influenced by public fiscal policy, and the

  3. Reducing the influence of spatial resolution to improve quantitative accuracy in emission tomography: A comparison of potential strategies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hutton, B. F.; Olsson, A.; Som, S.; Erlandsson, K.; Braun, M.

    2006-12-01

    The goal of this paper is to compare strategies for reducing partial volume effects by either minimizing the cause (i.e. improving resolution) or correcting the effect. Correction for resolution loss can be achieved either by modelling the resolution for use in iterative reconstruction or by imposing constraints based on knowledge of the underlying anatomy. Approaches to partial volume correction largely rely on knowledge of the underlying anatomy, based on well-registered high-resolution anatomical imaging modalities (CT or MRI). Corrections can be applied by considering the signal loss that results by smoothing the high-resolution modality to the same resolution as obtained in emission tomography. A physical phantom representing the central brain structures was used to evaluate the quantitative accuracy of the various strategies for either improving resolution or correcting for partial volume effects. Inclusion of resolution in the reconstruction model improved the measured contrast for the central brain structures but still underestimated the true object contrast (˜0.70). Use of information on the boundaries of the structures in conjunction with a smoothing prior using maximum entropy reconstruction achieved some degree of contrast enhancement and improved the noise properties of the resulting images. Partial volume correction based on segmentation of registered anatomical images and knowledge of the reconstructed resolution permitted more accurate quantification of the target to background ratio for individual brain structures.

  4. What shy individuals do to cope with their shyness: a content analysis and evaluation of self-selected coping strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carducci, Bernardo J

    2009-01-01

    A content analysis of the written responses of 158 shy individuals was performed to investigate the nature of the self-selected strategies they reported using to deal with their shyness. The classification, along with the frequency of their use, of the self-selected strategies by four raters identified 10 separate categories, with the top five labeled forced extraversion (65%), cognitively induced self-reassurance (26%), educational extraversion (15.2%), sought professional help (14.6%), and alcohol-assisted extraversion (12.7%). An evaluation of the self-selected strategies indicated that they were associated with characteristic features that were incomplete, self-defeating, and/or potentially dangerous (e.g., self-medication). Suggestions as to how shy individuals might improve the effectiveness of these self-selected strategies for dealing with their shyness and the therapeutic implications associated with seeking professional assistance for shyness are presented.

  5. The Impact of Drama-Based Instruction as Effective Language Learning Strategies on Improving Primary Iranian ESL Learners’ Speaking Abilities

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Pooneh Karimzadeh

    2017-01-01

    The present article investigates the significant effect of drama-based techniques as language learning strategies that can improve communicative competence to achieve appropriate level of speaking abilities...

  6. A qualitative study of senior hospital managers' views on current and innovative strategies to improve hand hygiene

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    McInnes, Elizabeth; Phillips, Rosemary; Middleton, Sandy; Gould, Dinah

    2014-01-01

    .... Senior hospital managers have responsibilities for implementing patient safety initiatives and are therefore ideally placed to provide suggestions for improving strategies to increase hand hygiene compliance...

  7. Policy Decomposition for Evaluation Performance Improvement of PDP

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fan Deng

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available In conventional centralized authorization models, the evaluation performance of policy decision point (PDP decreases obviously with the growing numbers of rules embodied in a policy. Aiming to improve the evaluation performance of PDP, a distributed policy evaluation engine called XDPEE is presented. In this engine, the unicity of PDP in the centralized authorization model is changed by increasing the number of PDPs. A policy should be decomposed into multiple subpolicies each with fewer rules by using a decomposition method, which can have the advantage of balancing the cost of subpolicies deployed to each PDP. Policy decomposition is the key problem of the evaluation performance improvement of PDPs. A greedy algorithm with O(nlgn time complexity for policy decomposition is constructed. In experiments, the policy of the LMS, VMS, and ASMS in real applications is decomposed separately into multiple subpolicies based on the greedy algorithm. Policy decomposition guarantees that the cost of subpolicies deployed to each PDP is equal or approximately equal. Experimental results show that (1 the method of policy decomposition improves the evaluation performance of PDPs effectively and that (2 the evaluation time of PDPs reduces with the growing numbers of PDPs.

  8. Sustainable Assessment and Evaluation Strategies for Open and Distance Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Okonkwo, Charity Akuadi

    2010-01-01

    This paper first presents an overview of the concepts of assessment and evaluation in Open and Distance Learning (ODL) environment. The large numbers of students and numerous courses make assessment and evaluation very difficult and administrative nightmare at Distance Learning (DL) institutions. These challenges informed exploring issues relating…

  9. Explaining the effects of two different strategies for promoting hand hygiene in hospital nurses: a process evaluation alongside a cluster randomised controlled trial

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    Background There is only limited understanding of why hand hygiene improvement strategies are successful or fail. It is therefore important to look inside the ‘black box’ of such strategies, to ascertain which components of a strategy work well or less well. This study examined which components of two hand hygiene improvement strategies were associated with increased nurses’ hand hygiene compliance. Methods A process evaluation of a cluster randomised controlled trial was conducted in which part of the nursing wards of three hospitals in the Netherlands received a state-of-the-art strategy, including education, reminders, feedback, and optimising materials and facilities; another part received a team and leaders-directed strategy that included all elements of the state-of-the-art strategy, supplemented with activities aimed at the social and enhancing leadership. This process evaluation used four sets of measures: effects on nurses’ hand hygiene compliance, adherence to the improvement strategies, contextual factors, and nurses’ experiences with strategy components. Analyses of variance and multiple regression analyses were used to explore changes in nurses’ hand hygiene compliance and thereby better understand trial effects. Results Both strategies were performed with good adherence to protocol. Two contextual factors were associated with changes in hand hygiene compliance: a hospital effect in long term (p behaviour p < 0.01), and ‘leadership’ (i.e., ward manager holds team members accountable for hand hygiene performance p < 0.01) correlated positively with changes in nurses’ hand hygiene compliance. Conclusion This study illustrates the use of a process evaluation to uncover mechanisms underlying change in hand hygiene improvement strategies. Our study results demonstrate the added value of specific aspects of social influence and leadership in hand hygiene improvement strategies, thus offering an interpretation of the trial effects. Trial

  10. The Action Plan Against Repetitive Work - An Industrial Relation Strategy for Improving the Working Environment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hasle, Peter; Møller, Niels

    2001-01-01

    indicates that a measurable reduction of repetitive work has been achieved, while recognizing the the new management strategies focusing on human resources development have also played an important role. These results are used to suggest that - under certain conditions - a combination of state regulation......The Danish Action Plan against Repetitive Work is presented and discussed as a possible new strategy for regulating repetitive work as well as other complicated working environment problems. The article is based on an empirical evaluation ot the Action Plan. The asseessment of the Action Plan...

  11. Barriers to preventive therapy for breast and other major cancers and strategies to improve uptake

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeCensi, Andrea; Thorat, Mangesh A; Bonanni, Bernardo; Smith, Samuel G; Cuzick, Jack

    2015-01-01

    The global cancer burden continues to rise and the war on cancer can only be won if improvements in treatment go hand in hand with therapeutic cancer prevention. Despite the availability of several efficacious agents, utilisation of preventive therapy has been poor due to various barriers, such as the lack of physician and patient awareness, fear of side effects, and licensing and indemnity issues. In this review, we discuss these barriers in detail and propose strategies to overcome them. These strategies include improving physician awareness and countering prejudices by highlighting the important differences between preventive therapy and cancer treatment. The importance of the agent–biomarker–cohort (ABC) paradigm to improve effectiveness of preventive therapy cannot be overemphasised. Future research to improve therapeutic cancer prevention needs to include improvements in the prediction of benefits and harms, and improvements in the safety profile of existing agents by experimentation with dose. We also highlight the role of drug repurposing for providing new agents as well as to address the current imbalance between therapeutic and preventive research. In order to move the field of therapeutic cancer prevention forwards, engagement with policymakers to correct research imbalance as well as to remove practical obstacles to implementation is also urgently needed. PMID:26635899

  12. Strategies to improve treatment coverage in community-based public health programs: A systematic review of the literature.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katrina V Deardorff

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Community-based public health campaigns, such as those used in mass deworming, vitamin A supplementation and child immunization programs, provide key healthcare interventions to targeted populations at scale. However, these programs often fall short of established coverage targets. The purpose of this systematic review was to evaluate the impact of strategies used to increase treatment coverage in community-based public health campaigns.We systematically searched CAB Direct, Embase, and PubMed archives for studies utilizing specific interventions to increase coverage of community-based distribution of drugs, vaccines, or other public health services. We identified 5,637 articles, from which 79 full texts were evaluated according to pre-defined inclusion and exclusion criteria. Twenty-eight articles met inclusion criteria and data were abstracted regarding strategy-specific changes in coverage from these sources. Strategies used to increase coverage included community-directed treatment (n = 6, pooled percent change in coverage: +26.2%, distributor incentives (n = 2, +25.3%, distribution along kinship networks (n = 1, +24.5%, intensified information, education, and communication activities (n = 8, +21.6%, fixed-point delivery (n = 1, +21.4%, door-to-door delivery (n = 1, +14.0%, integrated service distribution (n = 9, +12.7%, conversion from school- to community-based delivery (n = 3, +11.9%, and management by a non-governmental organization (n = 1, +5.8%.Strategies that target improving community member ownership of distribution appear to have a large impact on increasing treatment coverage. However, all strategies used to increase coverage successfully did so. These results may be useful to National Ministries, programs, and implementing partners in optimizing treatment coverage in community-based public health programs.

  13. Quality improvement education to improve performance on ulcerative colitis quality measures and care processes aligned with National Quality Strategy priorities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greene, Laurence; Moreo, Kathleen

    2015-01-01

    Studies on inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) have reported suboptimal approaches to patient care. In the United States, the findings have motivated leading gastroenterology organizations to call for initiatives that support clinicians in aligning their practices with quality measures for IBD and priorities of the National Quality Strategy (NQS). We designed and implemented a quality improvement (QI) education program on ulcerative colitis in which patient charts were audited for 30 gastroenterologists before (n = 300 charts) and after (n = 290 charts) they participated in QI-focused educational activities. Charts were audited for nine measures, selected for their alignment with four NQS priorities: making care safer, ensuring patient engagement, promoting communication, and promoting effective treatment practices. Four of the measures, including guideline-directed vaccinations and assessments of disease type and activity, were part of the CMS Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS). The other five measures involved counseling patients on various topics in ulcerative colitis management, documentation of side effects, assessment of adherence status, and simplification of dosing. The gastroenterologists also completed baseline and post-education surveys designed to assess qualitative outcomes. One of the educational interventions was a private audit feedback session conducted for each gastroenterologist. The sessions were designed to support participants in identifying measures reflecting suboptimal care quality and developing action plans for improvement. In continuous improvement cycles, follow-up interventions included QI tools and educational monographs. Across the nine chart variables, post-education improvements ranged from 0% to 48%, with a mean improvement of 15.9%. Survey findings revealed improvements in self-reported understanding of quality measures and intentions to apply them to practice, and lower rates of perceived significant barriers to high

  14. STRATEGY FOR EVALUATION AND SELECTION OF SYSTEMS FOR ELECTRONIC LEARNING

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dubravka Mandušić

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Today`s technology supported and accelerated learning time requires constant and continuous acquisition of new knowledge. On the other hand, it does not leave enough time for additional education. Increasing number of E-learning systems, withdraws a need for precise evaluation of functionality that those systems provide; so they could be reciprocally compared. While implementing new systems for electronic learning, it is very important to pre-evaluate existing systems in order to select the one that meets all defined parameters, with low costs/investment. Proper evaluation can save time and money.

  15. An Alternative Evacuation Framework to Improve Protective-action Strategies Following a Nuclear Power Accident: The Adaptive Protective Action Zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hammond, Gregory D.

    Within the U.S. current protective-action strategies to safeguard the public following a nuclear power accident have remained largely unchanged since their implementation in the early 1980s. In the past thirty years, new technologies have been introduced allowing faster computations, better modeling of predicted radiological consequences, and improved accident mapping with geographic information systems (GIS). Utilizing these new technologies, we evaluate the efficacy of alternative strategies, called adaptive protective action zones (APAZs), that use site-specific and event-specific data to dynamically determine evacuation boundaries with simple heuristics in order to better inform protective action decisions (rather than relying on pre-event regulatory bright lines). Several candidate APAZs were developed and then compared to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission's keyhole evacuation strategy (and full evacuation of the emergency planning zone). Two of the APAZs were better on average than existing NRC strategies at reducing either the radiological exposure, the population evacuated, or both. These APAZs are especially effective for larger radioactive plumes and at high population sites; one of them is better at reducing radiation exposure, while the other is better at reducing the population evacuated. However, should policy makers decide that the benefits of APAZs outweigh the costs of implementation, APAZ adoption by U.S. regulatory agencies should be accompanied by a revision to the nuclear-power plant emergency planning basis, and revisions to local nuclear power emergency response planning areas.

  16. From the Food Sovereignty Ensuring Strategy to the Strategy of Improving the Agro-Food Complex Competitiveness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anatoly Ivanovich Altukhov

    2016-09-01

    . It shows the advisability of formulating the single scientifically based interministerial document in the form of the national strategy and some relevant programs to improve the competitiveness of the country’s agro-food complex, employment and income of the rural population.

  17. Successive mycological nail tests for onychomycosis: a strategy to improve diagnosis efficiency

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tereza Elizabeth Fernandes Meireles

    Full Text Available Onychomycosis is a fungal infection of nails caused by dermatophytes, yeasts and moulds, accounting for about 50% of onychopathies. A high frequency of onychomycosis caused by Candida species has been reported during the last few years in northeast Brazil, as well as in other regions of the world. A clinical diagnosis of onychomycosis needs to be confirmed through laboratory exams. We evaluated the importance of serial repetition of direct microscopic exams and fungal culture for the diagnosis of onychomycosis in the city of Fortaleza, Ceará, in northeast Brazil. We first made a retrospective study of 127 patients with onychomycosis, identifying the fungi that had been isolated from fingernails and toenails. We then made a prospective study of 120 patients, who were submitted to three successive mycological examinations. Ungual residues were scraped off and directly examined with a microscope and fungal cultures were made. In the retrospective study, in which only one sample was analyzed, the incidence of onychomycosis was 25.0%. In our prospective study, in which we had data from successive mycological examinations, 37.8% had onychomycosis. The most commonly isolated fungi in both studies were yeasts from the genera Candida, especially C albicans, C. parapsilosis and C. tropicalis. We found a high proportion of onychomycosis caused by Candida species. We also concluded that serial repetition of direct microscopic examination and fungal culture, with intervals of 2-5 days improved the diagnosis of onychomycosis. We suggest that this laboratorial strategy is necessary for accurate diagnosis of this type of mycosis, especially when the standard procedures fail to diagnose fungal infection, despite strong clinical suspicion.

  18. Laboratory evaluation of the improved tube test detection limits for ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    In Kenya there is currently no screening of antimicrobial drug residues in milk. This study evaluated the improved tube test as a possible screening method using seven representatives of the β-lactam antibiotics. The group comprises antimicrobials most frequently used to treat bacterial infections in dairy cows.

  19. Evaluation of the performance of improved sweet potato ( Ipomoea ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Evaluation of the performance of improved sweet potato ( Ipomoea batatas L. LAM) varieties in Bayelsa State, Nigeria. ... There was incidence of diseases but that of insects was low. For fresh root phenotypic characteristics, Ex-Igbariam and 199004-2 had yellow flesh, indicative of the presence of vitamin A precursor.

  20. Continuous curricular feedback: a formative evaluation approach to curricular improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldfarb, Stanley; Morrison, Gail

    2014-02-01

    Curriculum evaluations are used to plan future revisions and other improvements in curriculum design. Most models are summative and occur at the end of a course, so improvements in instruction may be delayed. In this article, the authors describe the formative curriculum evaluation model adopted at the Raymond and Ruth Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. In their model, representative student feedback is gathered in real time and used to modify courses and improve instruction. The central features of their continuous feedback model include developing a small cadre of preclinical and clinical student evaluators who are trained to obtain classwide input regarding all aspects of the curriculum, including teacher effectiveness, and meet regularly (weekly or monthly) with relevant faculty and administrators. The authors show how this curriculum evaluation approach maximizes student involvement in course development and provides opportunities for rapid improvements in course content and instruction as well as for the identification of barriers to effective clinical and preclinical educational experiences.

  1. Improving Education in Developing Countries: Lessons From Rigorous Impact Evaluations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ganimian, Alejandro J.; Murnane, Richard J.

    2016-01-01

    In this article, we reviewed and interpreted the evidence from 223 rigorous impact evaluations of educational initiatives conducted in 56 low- and middle-income countries. We considered for inclusion in our review all studies in recent syntheses that have reached seemingly conflicting conclusions about which interventions improve educational…

  2. Evaluation of Glider Coatings against Biofouling for Improved Flight Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-09-30

    We received 10 different samples from UCSD/Scripps, operating the spray glider . There was one sample from Webb Research Inc., operating the slocum ...three glider types (Spray, Slocum , and Seaglider) in the biofoulingassessment field site in Morro Bay, CA. Samples will be maintained and...DISTRIBUTION STATEMENT A. Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited. Evaluation of Glider Coatings against Biofouling for Improved

  3. Evaluation of suckling and post weaning practices for improving ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Mo

    Evaluation of suckling and post weaning practices for improving reproductive efficiency in Nepalese Pakhribas pigs ... competition. It also helps to take the pressure off a good milking sow, which will help to minimise the weight loss and restore positive nutrient balance just before weaning. (English, 1988). However, this ...

  4. Student Evaluations of Teaching: Improving Teaching Quality in Higher Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hammonds, Frank; Mariano, Gina J.; Ammons, Gracie; Chambers, Sheridan

    2017-01-01

    Student evaluations of teaching (SET) are widely used in both North America and the UK as a means of documenting and improving teaching quality. This article discusses current research on SET administration and interpretation in both regions. Sections of the article are dedicated to various problems associated with SETs and how these may be…

  5. participatory evaluation of improved sweetpotato varieties in eastern ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    objective of this study was to evaluate the acceptability of improved sweetpotaio varieties by farmers, through assessing the performance of the tested varieties under farmers' condition and investigating thc criteria used by farmers in the selection of sweetpotato varieties. A.E. MASUMBA et al. MATERIALS AND METHODS.

  6. Introduction and evaluation of improved banana cultivars for ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Introduction and evaluation of improved banana cultivars for agronomic and yield characteristics in Kenya. ... Banana (Musa spp.) is one of the most important food and cash crops in Kenya. However, most of the cultivars grown particulary the local ones are low yielders and ... maturity, while FHIA 23 took the shortest time.

  7. Vertical footbridge vibrations: Towards an improved and codifiable response evaluation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ingólfsson, Einar Thór; Georgakis, Christos; Jönsson, Jeppe

    2007-01-01

    An improved and codifiable footbridge response evaluation is presented herewith, in which peak vertical accelerations are provided as a function of load return period in the form of response spectra. To achieve this, a series of Monte Carlo simulations are employed to generate vertical loads indu...

  8. An Evaluation Strategy Developed by RAND for the Broad Foundation

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Chun, Tammi

    2001-01-01

    ... attempt to provide evidence that a leadership initiative is influencing student outcomes. As the W. K. Kellogg Foundation claims, evaluation can lead the foundation and those it supports to greater learning opportunities and more effective programs...

  9. Evaluation of construction strategies for PCC pavement rehabilitation projects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-09-30

    This study investigated project management level solutions to optimizing resources, minimizing costs : (including user costs) and time for PCC pavement rehabilitation projects. This study extensively : evaluated the applicability of the Construction ...

  10. A Framework for Evaluating Emergency Preparedness Plans and Response Strategies

    OpenAIRE

    A. Larson

    2008-01-01

    A framework for evaluating emergency preparedness plans is presented, aimed at preparedness plans requiring multi-agency cooperation and coordination. The approach relies on an evaluation by criteria, assessing degrees of fulfillment for criteria which are collected from findings in social science research on emergency management. The criteria are categorised into 1) organisational criteria, 2) maturity criteria, and 3) effectiveness criteria. The first category is concerned with properties ...

  11. Issues and Strategies for Evaluation of Structural Design Options

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    MacLeod, Iain A.; Hartvig, Susanne C

    1999-01-01

    Two basic approaches to desgin option evaluation, controlled convergence and scoring are described. Their use is illustrated for the design of a 160 m span bridge. The methods allow both subjective and objective criteria to be used. The use of these methods does not normally give clear-cut answere...... as to the best option, but allows the competing features of an evaluation to be understood more clearly....

  12. Strategies to Improve Adherence to Dietary Weight Loss Interventions in Research and Real-World Settings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibson, Alice A; Sainsbury, Amanda

    2017-07-11

    Dietary interventions are the cornerstone of obesity treatment. The optimal dietary approach to weight loss is a hotly debated topic among health professionals and the lay public alike. An emerging body of evidence suggests that a higher level of adherence to a diet, regardless of the type of diet, is an important factor in weight loss success over the short and long term. Key strategies to improve adherence include designing dietary weight loss interventions (such as ketogenic diets) that help to control the increased drive to eat that accompanies weight loss, tailoring dietary interventions to a person's dietary preferences (and nutritional requirements), and promoting self-monitoring of food intake. The aim of this paper is to examine these strategies, which can be used to improve adherence and thereby increase the success of dietary weight loss interventions.

  13. The effect of self-management strategies on improving task performance in students with learning disabilities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leila Bahri

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Behavioral self-management approach offers some promising implications for improving independent task performance in all students particularly ones with learning disabilities. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of self-management training on task performance in students diagnosed as learning disabled. Methods: The participants were five students with learning disabilities attending in sub-specialty psychological clinics in Tabriz, Iran. Changing criterion design as a type of single-subject design applied, and data were gathered during each baseline and treatment sessions. Results: Training in self-management strategies was conducted in 12 sessions of 45 minutes. The self-management training improved students’ task performance and increased their academic productivity and accuracy. Conclusion: Practical implications and recommendations for school psychologists, teachers, and clinicians for appropriate application of self-management strategies are discussed.

  14. Strategies to Improve Adherence to Dietary Weight Loss Interventions in Research and Real-World Settings

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alice A. Gibson

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Dietary interventions are the cornerstone of obesity treatment. The optimal dietary approach to weight loss is a hotly debated topic among health professionals and the lay public alike. An emerging body of evidence suggests that a higher level of adherence to a diet, regardless of the type of diet, is an important factor in weight loss success over the short and long term. Key strategies to improve adherence include designing dietary weight loss interventions (such as ketogenic diets that help to control the increased drive to eat that accompanies weight loss, tailoring dietary interventions to a person’s dietary preferences (and nutritional requirements, and promoting self-monitoring of food intake. The aim of this paper is to examine these strategies, which can be used to improve adherence and thereby increase the success of dietary weight loss interventions.

  15. Retrieval practice: a simple strategy for improving memory after traumatic brain injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sumowski, James F; Wood, Hali G; Chiaravalloti, Nancy; Wylie, Glenn R; Lengenfelder, Jeannie; DeLuca, John

    2010-11-01

    Memory impairment is common following traumatic brain injury (TBI), but interventions to improve memory in persons with TBI have been ineffective. Retrieval practice is a robust memory strategy among healthy undergraduates, whereby practice retrieving information shortly after it is presented leads to better delayed recall than simple restudy. In a verbal paired associate paradigm, we investigated the effect of retrieval practice relative to massed and spaced restudy on delayed recall in 14 persons with chronic memory impairment following a TBI and 14 age-matched healthy controls. A significant learning condition (massed restudy, spaced restudy, retrieval practice) by group (TBI, healthy) interaction emerged, whereby only healthy controls benefited from spaced restudy (i.e., distributed learning) over massed restudy, but both groups greatly benefited from retrieval practice over massed and spaced restudy. That is, retrieval practice greatly improves memory in persons with TBI, even when other mnemonic strategies (e.g., distributed learning) are less effective.

  16. Improving Vector Evaluated Particle Swarm Optimisation by incorporating nondominated solutions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lim, Kian Sheng; Ibrahim, Zuwairie; Buyamin, Salinda; Ahmad, Anita; Naim, Faradila; Ghazali, Kamarul Hawari; Mokhtar, Norrima

    2013-01-01

    The Vector Evaluated Particle Swarm Optimisation algorithm is widely used to solve multiobjective optimisation problems. This algorithm optimises one objective using a swarm of particles where their movements are guided by the best solution found by another swarm. However, the best solution of a swarm is only updated when a newly generated solution has better fitness than the best solution at the objective function optimised by that swarm, yielding poor solutions for the multiobjective optimisation problems. Thus, an improved Vector Evaluated Particle Swarm Optimisation algorithm is introduced by incorporating the nondominated solutions as the guidance for a swarm rather than using the best solution from another swarm. In this paper, the performance of improved Vector Evaluated Particle Swarm Optimisation algorithm is investigated using performance measures such as the number of nondominated solutions found, the generational distance, the spread, and the hypervolume. The results suggest that the improved Vector Evaluated Particle Swarm Optimisation algorithm has impressive performance compared with the conventional Vector Evaluated Particle Swarm Optimisation algorithm.

  17. Evaluation of an institutional project to improve venous thromboembolism prevention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Minami, Christina A; Yang, Anthony D; Ju, Mila; Culver, Eckford; Seifert, Kathryn; Kreutzer, Lindsey; Halverson, Terri; O'Leary, Kevin J; Bilimoria, Karl Y

    2016-12-01

    Northwestern Memorial Hospital (NMH) was historically a poor performer on the venous thromboembolism (VTE) outcome measure. As this measure has been shown to be flawed by surveillance bias, NMH embraced process-of-care measures to ensure appropriate VTE prophylaxis to assess healthcare-associated VTE prevention efforts. To evaluate the impact of an institution-wide project aimed at improving hospital performance on VTE prophylaxis measures. A retrospective observational study. NMH, an 885-bed academic medical center in Chicago, Illinois PATIENTS: Inpatients admitted to NMH from January 1, 2013 to May 1, 2013 and from October 1, 2014 to April 1, 2015 were eligible for evaluation. Using the define-measure-analyze-improve-control (DMAIC) process-improvement methodology, a multidisciplinary team implemented and iteratively improved 15 data-driven interventions in 4 broad areas: (1) electronic medical record (EMR) alerts, (2) education initiatives, (3) new EMR order sets, and (4) other EMR changes. The Joint Commission's 6 core measures and the Surgical Care Improvement Project (SCIP) SCIP-VTE-2 measure. Based on 3103 observations (1679 from January 1, 2013 to May 1, 2013, and 1424 from October 1, 2014 to April 1, 2015), performance on the core measures improved. Performance on measure 1 (chemoprophylaxis) improved from 82.5% to 90.2% on medicine services, and from 94.4% to 97.6% on surgical services. The largest improvements were seen in measure 4 (platelet monitoring), with a performance increase from 76.7% adherence to 100%, and measure 5 (warfarin discharge instructions), with a performance increase from 27.4% to 88.8%. A systematic hospital-wide DMAIC project improved VTE prophylaxis measure performance. Sustained performance has been observed, and novel control mechanisms for continued performance surveillance have been embedded in the hospital system. Journal of Hospital Medicine 2016;11:S29-S37. © 2016 Society of Hospital Medicine. © 2016 Society of Hospital

  18. Strategies for improved French-language health services: Perspectives of family physicians in northeastern Ontario.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gauthier, Alain P; Timony, Patrick E; Serresse, Suzanne; Goodale, Natalie; Prpic, Jason

    2015-08-01

    To identify strategies to improve the quality of health services for Francophone patients. A series of semistructured key informant interviews. Northeastern Ontario. Participants A total of 18 physicians were interviewed. Ten physicians were interviewed in French, 7 physicians were women, and 10 physicians were located in urban communities. Purposive and snowball sampling strategies were used to conduct a series of semistructured key informant interviews with family physicians practising in communities with a large Francophone population. Principles of grounded theory were applied, guided by a framework for patient-professional communication. Results were inductively derived following an iterative data collection–data analysis process and were analyzed using a detailed thematic approach. Respondents identified several strategies for providing high-quality French-language health services. Some were unique to non–French-speaking physicians (eg, using appropriate interpreter services), some were unique to French-speaking physicians (eg, using a flexible dialect), and some strategies were common to all physicians serving French populations (eg, hiring bilingual staff or having pamphlets and posters in both French and English). Physicians interviewed for this study provided high-quality health care by attributing substantial importance to effective communication. While linguistic patient-to-physician concordance is ideal, it might not always be possible. Thus, conscious efforts to attenuate communication barriers are necessary, and several effective strategies exist.

  19. Perspectives on engineering strategies for improving biofuel production from microalgae--a critical review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ho, Shih-Hsin; Ye, Xiaoting; Hasunuma, Tomohisa; Chang, Jo-Shu; Kondo, Akihiko

    2014-12-01

    Although the potential for biofuel production from microalgae via photosynthesis has been intensively investigated, information on the selection of a suitable operation strategy for microalgae-based biofuel production is lacking. Many published reports describe competitive strains and optimal culture conditions for use in biofuel production; however, the major impediment to further improvements is the absence of effective engineering strategies for microalgae cultivation and biofuel production. This comprehensive review discusses recent advances in understanding the effects of major environmental stresses and the characteristics of various engineering operation strategies on the production of biofuels (mainly biodiesel and bioethanol) using microalgae. The performances of microalgae-based biofuel-producing systems under various environmental stresses (i.e., irradiance, temperature, pH, nitrogen depletion, and salinity) and cultivation strategies (i.e., fed-batch, semi-continuous, continuous, two-stage, and salinity-gradient) are compared. The reasons for variations in performance and the underlying theories of the various production strategies are also critically discussed. The aim of this review is to provide useful information to facilitate development of innovative and feasible operation technologies for effectively increasing the commercial viability of microalgae-based biofuel production. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Bioactive forage legumes as a strategy to improve silage quality and minimise nitrogenous losses

    OpenAIRE

    Copani, Giuseppe; Ginane, Cécile; Le Morvan, Aline; Niderkorn, Vincent

    2014-01-01

    The use of forage legumes as a source of protein for ruminants is a sustainable strategy to reduce the use of inorganic-nitrogen fertiliser. In addition, some legumes species contain naturally bioactive secondary compounds, which could improve silage quality and digestive processes in ruminants. The aim of this study is to investigate the effects of bioactive legumes containing condensed tannins or polyphenol oxidase, ensiled alone or in mixture with a grass, on silage quality and conservatio...

  1. Implementing Kwl Strategy to Improve the Students’ English Speaking Skill

    OpenAIRE

    Mantra, Ida Bagus Nyoman

    2016-01-01

    The present study was conducted to attempt at improving Speaking skill through Know, Want, and Learned (KWL) strategy to the students of English Study Program, Faculty of Teacher Training and Education, Mahasaraswati Denpasar. The present classroom action study was basically triggered by the fact that the subjects under study still faced problem in speaking skill. The present classroom action study made use of pre-test and post-test research design with descriptive and quantitative analysis. ...

  2. An improved strategy for tandem affinity purification-tagging of Schizosaccharomyces pombe genes

    OpenAIRE

    Cipak, Lubos; Spirek, Mario; Novatchkova, Maria; Chen, Zhiming; Rumpf, Cornelia; Lugmayr, Wolfgang; Mechtler, Karl; Ammerer, Gustav; Csaszar, Edina; Gregan, Juraj

    2009-01-01

    Tandem affinity purification (TAP) is a method that allows rapid purification of native protein complexes. We developed an improved technique to fuse the fission yeast genes with a TAP tag. Our technique is based on tagging constructs that contain regions homologous to the target gene cloned into vectors carrying a TAP tag. We used this technique to design strategies for TAP-tagging of predicted Schizosaccharomyces pombe genes (http://mendel.imp.ac.at/Pombe_tagging/). To validate the approach...

  3. “Team Building: Proven Strategies for Improving Team Performance, 4th Edition”

    OpenAIRE

    Greg Homan; Jason Hedrick

    2008-01-01

    Team Building is an important issue for Youth Development professionals. We utilize team-focused work to achieve our objectives in educating youth. The team building skills we integrate into programming serve to prepare youth for the dynamic, highly interpersonal work environment of today. “Team Building: Proven Strategies for Improving Team Performance, 4th Edition,” by W. Dyer, W.G. Dyer, and J. Dyer (2007), provides a practical theoretical framework for those interested in team building ap...

  4. Resuscitation Strategies for Burn Injuries Sustained in Austere Environments to Improve Renal Perfusion and Function

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-10-01

    vascular endothelial growth factor gene transfer on wound healing after burn injury , Crit. Care Med. 31 (2003) 1017–1025. D.M. Burmeister et al. BBA...G.L. Su, D.G. Remick, S.C. Wang, S. Arbabi, Attenuating burn wound inflammatory signaling reduces systemic inflammation and acute lung injury , J...AWARD NUMBER: W81XWH-16-2-0041 TITLE: Resuscitation Strategies for Burn Injuries Sustained in Austere Environments to Improve Renal Perfusion

  5. Improving Students' Speaking Skill Through Role Play Strategy at Grade Eighth in SMPN 6 Rambah

    OpenAIRE

    Dwiana, Ari Aprilia; Rahayu, Pipit; -, Eripuddin

    2015-01-01

    This research was conducted to improve students' speaking skill at eighth grade students of SMPN 6 Rambahthrough role play strategy used a Classroom Action Research (CAR) method which is conducted to solve thestudents' problem in English Speaking. The researcher did two cycles, which each cycle consists of planning, acting,observing, and reflecting. The qualitative data were gained by analyzing the field note and observation result andthe quantitative data were obtained from the students' spe...

  6. Design of a Load Torque Based Control Strategy for Improving Electric Tractor Motor Energy Conversion Efficiency

    OpenAIRE

    Mengnan Liu; Liyou Xu; Zhili Zhou

    2016-01-01

    In order to improve the electrical conversion efficiency of an electric tractor motor, a load torque based control strategy (LTCS) is designed in this paper by using a particle swarm optimization algorithm (PSO). By mathematically modeling electric-mechanical performance and theoretical energy waste of the electric motor, as well as the transmission characteristics of the drivetrain, the objective function, control relationship, and analytical platform are established. Torque and rotation spe...

  7. Using a kinesthetic learning strategy to engage nursing student thinking, enhance retention, and improve critical thinking.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wagner, Elissa A

    2014-06-01

    This article reports the outcomes of a kinesthetic learning strategy used during a cardiac lecture to engage students and to improve the use of classroom-acquired knowledge in today's challenging clinical settings. Nurse educators are constantly faced with finding new ways to engage students, stimulate critical thinking, and improve clinical application in a rapidly changing and complex health care system. Educators who deviate from the traditional pedagogy of didactic, content-driven teaching to a concept-based, student-centered approach using active and kinesthetic learning activities can enhance engagement and improve clinical problem solving, communication skills, and critical thinking to provide graduates with the tools necessary to be successful. The goals of this learning activity were to decrease the well-known classroom-clinical gap by enhancing engagement, providing deeper understanding of cardiac function and disorders, enhancing critical thinking, and improving clinical application. Copyright 2014, SLACK Incorporated.

  8. Defense Logistics: DOD Has a Strategy and Has Taken Steps to Improve Its Asset Visibility, but Further Actions Are Needed

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-01-01

    14. ABSTRACT 15. SUBJECT TERMS 16. SECURITY CLASSIFICATION OF: 17. LIMITATION OF ABSTRACT Same as Report (SAR) 18. NUMBER OF PAGES 36 19a...Ordnance Information System RFID Radio Frequency Identification SEP Supporting Execution Plan STRATEGY Strategy for Improving DOD Asset...Frequency Identification ( RFID ) technology. However, the Strategy does not specify which of the goals and objectives this initiative supports

  9. Periparturient immunosuppression and strategies to improve dairy cow health during the periparturient period.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aleri, J W; Hine, B C; Pyman, M F; Mansell, P D; Wales, W J; Mallard, B; Fisher, A D

    2016-10-01

    Common health problems observed during peripartum include milk fever, mastitis, fatty liver disease, ketosis, dystocia, retained placenta, metritis, hypomagnesaemia and abomasal displacements. The increased incidence of health problems observed during the periparturient period can be partly attributed to suboptimal immune responses. Factors contributing to decreased periparturient immunity include the act of parturition itself, impaired leukocytic activity, effects of colostrogenesis and lactogenesis, and associated hypocalcemia and negative energy balance. Nutritional and other management strategies represent a relevant short-term strategy aimed at improving the health and welfare of the transitioning cow. Additionally, it is important to consider improving the health of dairy herds through the genetic selection of animals with enhanced robustness by identifying those with superior disease resistance or resilience in the face of infection. As a consequence these animals are better able to cope with the production and environmental stresses. These may provide long-term selection strategies for improving the health and welfare of the transitioning cow particularly when combined with sound management practices, allowing dairy cattle to reach their full genetic potential. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. A Variable Interval Rescheduling Strategy for Dynamic Flexible Job Shop Scheduling Problem by Improved Genetic Algorithm

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lei Wang

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available In real-world manufacturing systems, production scheduling systems are often implemented under random or dynamic events like machine failure, unexpected processing times, stochastic arrival of the urgent orders, cancellation of the orders, and so on. These dynamic events will lead the initial scheduling scheme to be nonoptimal and/or infeasible. Hence, appropriate dynamic rescheduling approaches are needed to overcome the dynamic events. In this paper, we propose a dynamic rescheduling method based on variable interval rescheduling strategy (VIRS to deal with the dynamic flexible job shop scheduling problem considering machine failure, urgent job arrival, and job damage as disruptions. On the other hand, an improved genetic algorithm (GA is proposed for minimizing makespan. In our improved GA, a mix of random initialization population by combining initialization machine and initialization operation with random initialization is designed for generating high-quality initial population. In addition, the elitist strategy (ES and improved population diversity strategy (IPDS are used to avoid falling into the local optimal solution. Experimental results for static and several dynamic events in the FJSP show that our method is feasible and effective.

  11. IMPROVING WRITING DESCRIPTIVE TEXT BY USING NLP STRATEGY AT VIII GRADE OF SMPN 11 DURI

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dahler Dahler

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available This research is based on the problem faced by the students such as: difficulty inunderstanding the generic structures of descriptive text and the difficulties in developingparagraph. The purpose of this research was to improve the students’ writing skill by usingNeuro Linguistics Programming (NLP strategy at VIII grade of SMPN 11 Mandau Duri. Theresearch design was Classroom Action Research (CAR consisted of two cycles. The datawere collected by using test, field note, observation sheet, and interview. Then, the datacollected were analyzed by using scoring rubric of writing descriptive text. The result showedthat students’ ability in writing descriptive text could be improved. It could be seen frombased score of students writing skill was 38 (failed improve to 51 (failed in cycle 1 to 70(Pass in cycle II. It was caused by some factors, those were the teacher gave motivation,created enjoyfull experience, comfortable class and used various media. In conclusion, theuse of NLP strategy has many beneficial.Keywords:Writing skill, Descriptive Text and NLP strategy.

  12. Implementing practice management strategies to improve patient care: the EPIC project.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Attwell, David; Rogers-Warnock, Leslie; Nemis-White, Joanna

    2012-01-01

    Healthcare gaps, the difference between usual care and best care, are evident in Canada, particularly with respect to our aging, ailing population. Primary care practitioners are challenged to identify, prevent and close care gaps in their practice environment given the competing demands of informed, litigious patients with complex medical needs, ever-evolving scientific evidence with new treatment recommendations across many disciplines and an enhanced emphasis on quality and accountability in healthcare. Patient-centred health and disease management partnerships using measurement, feedback and communication of practice patterns and outcomes have been shown to narrow care gaps. Practice management strategies such as the use of patient registries and recall systems have also been used to help practitioners better understand, follow and proactively manage populations of patients in their practice. The Enhancing Practice to Improve Care project was initiated to determine the impact of a patient-centred health and disease management partnership using practice management strategies to improve patient care and outcomes for patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD). Forty-four general practices from four regions of British Columbia participated and, indeed, demonstrated that care and outcomes for patients with CKD could be improved via the implementation of practice management strategies in a patient-centred partnership measurement model of health and disease management.

  13. A multicomponent strategy to improve the availability of antivenom for treating snakebite envenoming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gutiérrez, José María; Burnouf, Thierry; Harrison, Robert A; Calvete, Juan J; Kuch, Ulrich; Warrell, David A; Williams, David J

    2014-07-01

    Snakebite envenoming is a common but neglected public health problem, particularly in impoverished rural regions of sub-Saharan Africa, Asia and Latin America. The only validated treatment for this condition is passive immunotherapy with safe and effective animal-derived antivenoms. However, there is a long-lasting crisis in the availability of these life-saving medications, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa and parts of Asia. We herein advocate a multicomponent strategy to substantially improve the availability of safe and effective antivenoms at the global level. This strategy is based on: (i) preparing validated collections of representative venom pools from the most medically dangerous snakes in high-risk regions of the world; (ii) strengthening the capacity of national antivenom manufacturing and quality control laboratories and their regulatory authorities and establishing new facilities in developing countries through technology transfer, as an integral part of efforts to develop their biological products industry; (iii) getting established laboratories to generate antivenoms for various regions of the world; and (iv) getting governments and relevant organizations to give snakebite envenoming due recognition within national and international public health policy frameworks. These ways of making antivenom available should be complemented by actions to improve health information systems, the accessibility of antivenoms, the training of medical and nursing staff, and community-based education. Such a multicomponent strategy involving stakeholders on many levels could help consolidate sustainable improvements in antivenom availability worldwide.

  14. Successful implementation of the World Health Organization hand hygiene improvement strategy in a referral hospital in Mali, Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allegranzi, Benedetta; Sax, Hugo; Bengaly, Loséni; Richet, Hervé; Minta, Daouda K; Chraiti, Marie-Noelle; Sokona, Fatoumata Maiga; Gayet-Ageron, Angèle; Bonnabry, Pascal; Pittet, Didier

    2010-02-01

    To assess the feasibility and effectiveness of the World Health Organization hand hygiene improvement strategy in a low-income African country. A before-and-after study from December 2006 through June 2008, with a 6-month baseline evaluation period and a follow-up period of 8 months from the beginning of the intervention. University Hospital, Bamako, Mali. Participants. Two hundred twenty-four healthcare workers. The intervention consisted of introducing a locally produced, alcohol-based handrub; monitoring hand hygiene compliance; providing performance feedback; educating staff; posting reminders in the workplace; and promoting an institutional safety climate according to the World Health Organization multimodal hand hygiene improvement strategy. Hand hygiene infrastructure, compliance, healthcare workers' knowledge and perceptions, and handrub consumption were evaluated at baseline and at follow-up. Severe deficiencies in the infrastructure for hand hygiene were identified before the intervention. Local handrub production and quality control proved to be feasible, affordable, and satisfactory. At follow-up, handrubbing was the quasi-exclusive hand hygiene technique (93.3%). Compliance increased from 8.0% at baseline to 21.8% at follow-up (P staff. Multimodal hand hygiene promotion is feasible and effective in a low-income country. Access to handrub was critical for its success. These findings motivated the government of Mali to expand the intervention nationwide. This experience represents a significant advancement for patient safety in developing countries.

  15. Performance Evaluation of Survivability Strategies for Elastic Optical Networks under Physical Layer Impairments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jurandir Lacerda Jr

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available This paper carried out a performance evaluation study that compares two survivability strategies (DPP and SM-RSA for elastic optical networks with and without physical layer impairments. The evaluated scenarios include three representative topologies for elastic optical network, NSFNET, EON and USA. It also analyzes the increase of blocking probability when the survivability strategies are evaluated under the realistic scenario that assumes physical layer impairments. For all studied topologies under physical layer impairments, the survivability strategies achieved blocking probability above 80%.

  16. Developmental theory-driven evaluation: Strategies for course ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The research has been conducted over a twenty five year period to validate the theory on which teaching has been based, to establish effects of the intervention and to identify ongoing needs for the type of instruction offered in the course. Based on improvement in both spatial ability and pass rates, the materials used in the ...

  17. Publicizing Your Program: Website Evaluation, Design, and Marketing Strategies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shroeder, Barbara A.

    2007-01-01

    This research was undertaken to study and improve the marketing efforts of the Department of Educational Technology (EDTECH) at Boise State University, recognizing the need to generate revenues based upon the new self-support structure instituted at the university and EDTECH Department. In investigating the marketing opportunities for the…

  18. Evaluating L2 Readers' Vocabulary Strategies and Dictionary Use

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prichard, Caleb

    2008-01-01

    A review of the relevant literature concerning second language dictionary use while reading suggests that selective dictionary use may lead to improved comprehension and efficient vocabulary development. This study aims to examine the dictionary use of Japanese university students to determine just how selective they are when reading nonfiction…

  19. Biobjective Optimization and Evaluation for Transit Signal Priority Strategies at Bus Stop-to-Stop Segment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rui Li

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper proposes a new optimization framework for the transit signal priority strategies in terms of green extension, red truncation, and phase insertion at the stop-to-stop segment of bus lines. The optimization objective is to minimize both passenger delay and the deviation from bus schedule simultaneously. The objective functions are defined with respect to the segment between bus stops, which can include the adjacent signalized intersections and downstream bus stops. The transit priority signal timing is optimized by using a biobjective optimization framework considering both the total delay at a segment and the delay deviation from the arrival schedules at bus stops. The proposed framework is evaluated using a VISSIM model calibrated with field traffic volume and traffic signal data of Caochangmen Boulevard in Nanjing, China. The optimized TSP-based phasing plans result in the reduced delay and improved reliability, compared with the non-TSP scenario under the different traffic flow conditions in the morning peak hour. The evaluation results indicate the promising performance of the proposed optimization framework in reducing the passenger delay and improving the bus schedule adherence for the urban transit system.

  20. STEADFAST: Psychotherapeutic Intervention Improves Postural Strategy of Somatoform Vertigo and Dizziness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Best, Christoph; Tschan, Regine; Stieber, Nikola; Beutel, Manfred E; Eckhardt-Henn, Annegret; Dieterich, Marianne

    2015-01-01

    Patients with somatoform vertigo and dizziness (SVD) disorders often report instability of stance or gait and fear of falling. Posturographic measurements indeed indicated a pathological postural strategy. Our goal was to evaluate the effectiveness of a psychotherapeutic and psychoeducational short-term intervention (PTI) using static posturography and psychometric examination. Seventeen SVD patients took part in the study. The effects of PTI on SVD were evaluated with quantitative static posturography. As primary endpoint a quotient characterizing the relation between horizontal and vertical sway was calculated (Q H/V ), reflecting the individual postural strategy. Results of static posturography were compared to those of age- and gender-matched healthy volunteers (n = 28); baseline measurements were compared to results after PTI. The secondary endpoint was the participation-limiting consequences of SVD as measured by the Vertigo Handicap Questionnaire (VHQ). Compared to the healthy volunteers, the patients with SVD showed a postural strategy characterized by stiffening-up that resulted in a significantly reduced body sway quotient before PTI (patients: Q H/V = 0.31 versus controls: Q H/V = 0.38; p = 0.022). After PTI the postural behavior normalized, and psychological distress was reduced. PTI therefore appears to modify pathological balance behaviour. The postural strategy of patients with SVD possibly results from anxious anticipatory cocontraction of the antigravity muscles.