521 Works

UNDERSTANDING MIDDLE SCHOOL STUDENTS’ ENROLLMENT CHOICE FOR A FULLY ONLINE EDUCATIONAL ENVIRONMENT DURING THE FALL OF 2020 COVID-19 NATIONAL HEALTH EMERGENCY

Wendy Duvall
Students’ choice in enrolling in a distance learning environment was examined in a mixed methods study in the fall of 2020 during the COVID-19 national health emergency of that same year. After state mandated school closures in the spring 2020, students statewide were forced into a fully online learning situation until the end of that semester. In the fall, the district that was the study site offered families the choice of either hybrid or fully...

KINETICS OF ELEMENTARY REACTIONS IN GRAPHENE OXIDATION AND KINETICS OF OH* IN HYDROGEN FLAMES

Siamak Mahmoudi
Due to diverse applications of graphene, a kinetic mechanism describing rates of elementary reactions is extremely useful. To achieve that goal the elementary reactions need to be detected and their rates need to be determined. In this work the objectives are to use first-principle tools to find those reactions and analyze their paths in the context of graphene oxidation. Density functional theory (DFT) calculations provide the best approximation to the Schr\"{o}dinger equation, which is not...

Hospital Nurses' Moral Distress and Coping during COVID-19

Abigail Latimer
The COVID-19 pandemic caused a wave of critically ill patients, overwhelming hospitals, and creating unprecedented conditions for hospital employees, particularly bedside nurses. Concerns about the emotional and mental well-being of nurses have already been raised prior to the pandemic and depression, anxiety, and PTSD symptoms among nurses during the pandemic have been observed. Given the increased infection and safety risks, staffing shortages, inadequate personal protective equipment and resources, and hospital restrictions causing many nurses to...

RELIGIOUS BELIEFS AND BEHAVIORS AS PREDICTORS OF SUBSTANCE USE IN FIRST-YEAR COLLEGE STUDENTS

Hannah B. McGee
Substance use is prevalent on college campuses (e.g., Douglas et al., 1997) and can create significant negative consequences (Kodjo & Klein, 2002; NIAAA, 2006). Research suggests that religious beliefs and religious behaviors interact to predict risky substance use in first-year undergraduate students, such that students with religious beliefs but no corresponding behaviors are at risk for significant alcohol use and related problems (Brechting et al., 2010; Cole et al., 2020). However, these studies have only...

ASSOCIATIONS BETWEEN IDENTITY AND FUTURE PARENTHOOD AMONG LGBTQ+ ASIAN/PACIFIC ISLANDER AMERICANS

Kay Simon
In recent years, the number of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (and additional identities; LGBTQ+) identified people and the number of Asian Pacific Islander Americans (APIA) have been increasing in the United States (Movement Advancement Project 2019; Newport, 2018). As the individuals in these demographic groups develop over their lifespan, many will become parents and form families, but little work is currently available on the experiences of LGBTQ+ APIA individuals and future parenthood. Here,...

ENVIRONMENTAL RESPIRATORY EXPOSURES AND PULMONARY FUNCTION AMONG RESIDENTS OF RURAL APPALACHIA, KENTUCKY

john flunker
Introduction Resource extraction exposures are hypothesized to promote adverse respiratory health outcomes among residents of rural Appalachia, yet no studies to date have simultaneously quantified small-scale geographic variation in residential exposure, individual level health factors, and respiratory health outcomes. Methods The Mountain Air Project (MAP) is a community engaged cross-sectional study based in Harlan and Letcher counties of Southeastern Kentucky. MAP utilized a novel small-scale method to define residential exposure boundaries: hydrologic unit code (HUC),...

Novel Hedonic Games and Stability Notions

Jacob Schlueter
We present here work on matching problems, namely hedonic games, also known as coalition formation games. We introduce two classes of hedonic games, Super Altruistic Hedonic Games (SAHGs) and Anchored Team Formation Games (ATFGs), and investigate the computational complexity of finding optimal partitions of agents into coalitions, or finding - or determining the existence of - stable coalition structures. We introduce a new stability notion for hedonic games and examine its relation to core and...

Predicting Material Properties

Tom Pace
Material properties are used in a wide variety of theoretical models of material behavior. Descriptive properties quantify the nature, structure, or composition of the material. Behavioral properties quantify the response of the material to an imposed condition. The central question of this work concerns the prediction of behavioral properties from previously determined descriptive properties through hierarchical multi-scale, multiphysics models implemented as numerical simulations. Applications covered focus on mass transport models, including sequential enzyme-catalyzed reactions in...

Characterization of Spontaneous Preeclampsia in the African Green Monkey (Chlorocebus aethiops sabaeus)

Chelsea Weaver
Hypertensive pregnancy disorders are a major contribution to maternal and neonatal mortality worldwide. Two of these disorders, preeclampsia and chronic hypertension in pregnancy, affect up to 10% of all pregnancies. These hypertensive disorders of pregnancy are associated with long-term, postnatal risk factors for both mother and offspring. Despite numerous recent advances in preeclampsia research, the underlying mechanisms are still not understood. This could be due to lack of a spontaneous animal model. This dissertation presents...

NEGATIVE REGULATORY FACTORS IN TOMBUSVIRUS REPLICATION

Paulina Alatriste
Although host cells are a rather rich source for co-opted host factors, lipids and metabolites, positive stranded RNA viruses vastly rewire cellular pathways and remodel cellular membranes to support viral replication. To accomplish such major changes, these viruses depend on the availability of different host factors and the ability to readily assemble viral replication organelles (VROs). Genome-wide screens and proteomics approaches with Tomato Bushy Stunt Virus (TBSV) in a yeast model host indicated that tombusviruses...

JOHN WESLEY WORK III

Kaylina Crawley
This study focuses on John Wesley Work III’s life and career in response to the scarcity of existing research and publication devoted to him. To expand the scholarship focused on Work and to deepen the history of African American artistry, this dissertation analyzes his additions to concert repertoire through his arrangements of spirituals, investigates his scholarship, and performance— including his activities as Director of the Fisk Jubilee Singers — and provides a foundation for further...

THE CLARINET AND PIANO WORKS OF ERNST MAHLE

Edgar Gonsales
Ernst Mahle is a German-Brazilian composer who not only became a Brazilian citizen but also a reference for Brazilian classical music. His vast list of compositions includes works for all major genres, as well as containing instrument combinations that are not mainstream. In addition to being a composer, Mahle dedicated a big part of his life as a pedagogue, as a teacher and as the director of the Escola de Música de Piracicaba (Piracicaba Music...

CELLULAR BIOENERGETICS REGULATES CELL PROLIFERATION DURING MAMMALIAN REGENERATION

Sandeep Saxena
Mammalian system consists of stress-sensing molecules that regulates their cellular response against damage, injury and oncogenic stress. During vertebrate regeneration, cells responding to injury re-enter the cell cycle and proliferate to form new tissue. Cell cycle re-entry or arrest is at least partly regulated by cellular senescence which negatively impacts the proliferative pool of cells during regeneration. What remains unclear is whether cells in regenerating systems possess an increased propensity to proliferate and are refractory...

Enhancing Drug Overdose Mortality Surveillance through Natural Language Processing and Machine Learning

Patrick Ward
Epidemiological surveillance is key to monitoring and assessing the health of populations. Drug overdose surveillance has become an increasingly important part of public health practice as overdose morbidity and mortality has increased due in large part to the opioid crisis. Monitoring drug overdose mortality relies on death certificate data, which has several limitations including timeliness and the coding structure used to identify specific substances that caused death. These limitations stem from the need to analyze...

HUMAN REGULATORY T CELLS CONTROL INFLAMMATION FROM EFFECTOR T CELLS IN PREDIABETES

Rui Liu
Type 2 diabetes (T2D) is a chronic low-grade inflammatory disease. A T cell cytokine profile (Th17) from PBMCs can distinguish obese T2D from obese non-diabetes subjects. Individual T cell subsets interact with each other and the diverse subsets jointly determine overall inflammation. Cellular metabolism drives cytokine production of CD4+ T cells, and therefore contributes to inflammation in T2D. However, specific changes in metabolism and function of CD4+ T cells during the progression from lean healthy...

REPRESENTING AND LEARNING PREFERENCES OVER COMBINATORIAL DOMAINS

Michael Huelsman
Agents make decisions based on their preferences. Thus, to predict their decisions one has to learn the agent's preferences. A key step in the learning process is selecting a model to represent those preferences. We studied this problem by borrowing techniques from the algorithm selection problem to analyze preference example sets and select the most appropriate preference representation for learning. We approached this problem in multiple steps. First, we determined which representations to consider. For...

Appalachia on the Airwaves

Carson Benn
Through a series of historical case studies of individual states within the multi-state region of the Appalachian mountain range, as well as the region as a whole, this dissertation examines educational television (ETV) operations, both at the network level and that of individual stations. Though mostly thought of as “public television”—an educational and noncommercial alternative to mainstream broadcast media—these ETV networks offered, I argue, something more analogous to present-day understandings of distance education and the...

Scalable Approaches for Auditing the Completeness of Biomedical Ontologies

Fengbo Zheng
An ontology provides a formalized representation of knowledge within a domain. In biomedicine, ontologies have been widely used in modern biomedical applications to enable semantic interoperability and facilitate data exchange. Given the important roles that biomedical ontologies play, quality issues such as incompleteness, if not addressed, can affect the quality of downstream ontology-driven applications. However, biomedical ontologies often have large sizes and complex structures. Thus, it is infeasible to uncover potential quality issues through manual...

Complications in Cardiac Surgery

Christine Williamitis
Quality of care and outcomes from cardiac surgery have always been of primary importance to providers and the entire health care team when caring for cardiac surgical patients. Providers in cardiac surgery have had a long history of tracking procedural morbidity and mortality rates in programs nationally and internationally. Morbidity and mortality rates vary widely among hospitals. In most studies in which procedural outcomes from cardiac surgery are evaluated, the focus has been on operative...

IMPACT OF PREFERENTIAL FLOW, SOURCE WATER CONNECTIVITY, AND AGRICULTURAL MANAGEMENT PRACTICES ON SEDIMENT AND PARTICULATE PHOSPHORUS DYNAMICS IN MIDWESTERN TILE-DRAINED LANDSCAPES

Saeid Nazari
Tile drainage is recognized as a significant transporter of sediment and particulate phosphorus (PP) in the Midwestern U.S., leading to proliferation of Harmful Algal Blooms (HABs). Numerous studies have focused on Dissolved Reactive Phosphorus (DRP) and Nitrogen (N) flux dynamics in tile-drained landscapes; however, the impact of preferential flow and agricultural management practices on fate and transport of sediment and PP has remained poorly understood. The overarching objective of this study was to improve understanding...

ESSAYS ON EVASION AND ENFORCEMENT IN VALUE ADDED TAX (VAT)

Jawad Shah
Value added tax (VAT) based on credit invoice system is the most common consumption tax in the world. Despite its self-regulating nature, VAT faces challenges in developing countries who have limited state capacity to check evasion and enforce tax on informal sectors of the economy. The tax authorities introduce policy interventions that can target the evasive behavior of firms interacting with informal sectors. My dissertation seeks to provide insight into three such policy reforms in...

Southern Alterity in the Global Modernist Novel, 1899-1966

Benjamin Wilson
My dissertation examines the portrayal of southern alterity in the global modernist novel. The trope of southern spaces as sites of decay, degeneration, and dissolution proves to be remarkably durable in both fictions set within the domestic U.S. south, as well as those colonial and postcolonial texts associated with the global modernist canon. Novels like Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness and William Faulkner’s Absalom, Absalom! suggest that the alterity of places like the Congo and...

Estimating and Testing Treatment Effects with Misclassified Multivariate Data

Zi Ye
Clinical trials are often used to assess drug efficacy and safety. Participants are sometimes pre-stratified into different groups by diagnostic tools. However, these diagnostic tools are fallible. The traditional method ignores this problem and assumes the diagnostic devices are perfect. This assumption will lead to inefficient and biased estimators. In this era of personalized medicine and measurement-based care, the issues of bias and efficiency are of paramount importance. Despite the prominence, only few researches evaluated...

International Cooperation Networks and Economic Sanction Effectiveness

Gargi Vyas
An economic sanction issued by a group of states can impose large costs on a target state and induce a change in its behavior. However, there is considerable variation in the success of multilateral sanctions. I argue that multilateral sanctions will be more effective with higher cohesion within the sender network. This is because linked senders can use the threat of withdrawing cooperation on other issues to encourage their partners to enforce sanction laws domestically....

Exploring the Food Environment in Youth Recreation Facilities

Mallory Brown
Childhood obesity continues to be a worldwide problem and is associated with multiple poor health outcomes including diabetes, cancer, and hyperlipidemia. Youth who are overweight or obese also experience greater instances of depression, low self-esteem, and emotional and behavioral disorders. Given the negative impact of childhood obesity, there is a need to gain a clearer understanding of the issue by identifying causes and solutions. To curb the development and perpetuation of this disease, the root...

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