11,328 Works

Transcendence of Time and Space: The Lived Experiences of Chinese International Graduate Students in the United States

Yali Pan
This phenomenological study explores the lived experiences of seven Chinese international graduate students in the United States. The students in this study range in age from the twenties to thirties and are pursuing advanced degrees in various disciplines including Education, American Studies, Economics, and the STEM field (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics). The phenomenological question is: What are the lived experiences of Chinese international graduate students in the United States? This research is conducted in...


Yanni Ding
The oceans play a key role in the global climate variability. This dissertation examines climate variability in historical simulations from fourteen CMIP5 (Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5) coupled models on different time scales. Responses of oceans to the external volcanic eruption, green house gas forcing, and internally generated variability are investigated with emphasis on higher latitudes. Chapter 2 addresses the oceanic response to tropical volcanic eruptions. Previous modeling studies have provided conflicting high latitude...

The Diversity of Burrowing Benthic Invertebrates and their Impact on Phosphorus Dynamics in Agricultural Drainage Ditches

Alan William Leslie
Agriculture remains the most widespread cause of impairment of freshwater habitats, but farm lands with artificial drainage structures such as ditches have specific locations where natural physical and biogeochemical processes can be used to reduce nutrients delivered to local watersheds. Agricultural drainage ditches can also be sources of biodiversity, serving as patches of uncropped aquatic habitat that may provide a significant amount of diversity to agricultural landscapes. Macroinvertebrate communities play important roles in nutrient cycling...

Models, Inference, and Implementation for Scalable Probabilistic Models of Text

Ke Zhai
Unsupervised probabilistic Bayesian models are powerful tools for statistical analysis, especially in the area of information retrieval, document analysis and text processing. Despite their success, unsupervised probabilistic Bayesian models are often slow in inference due to inter-entangled mutually dependent latent variables. In addition, the parameter space of these models is usually very large. As the data from various different media sources--for example, internet, electronic books, digital films, etc--become widely accessible, lack of scalability for these...


Wai Lim Ku
In this thesis, which consists of three parts, we investigate problems related to systems biology and collective behavior in complex systems. The first part studies genetic networks that are inferred using gene expression data. Here we use established transcriptional regulatory interactions (TRIs) in combination with microarray expression data from both Escherichia coli (a prokaryote) and Saccharomyces cerevisiae (a eukaryote) to assess the accuracy of predictions of coregulated gene pairs and TRIs from observations of coexpressed...

Investigations of Highly Irregular Primes and Associated Ray Class Fields

Morgan Benjamin Stern
We investigate properties of the class number of certain ray class fields of prime conductor lying above imaginary quadratic fields. While most previous work in this area restricted to the case of imaginary quadratic fields of class number 1, we deal almost exclusively with class number 2. Our main results include finding 5 counterexamples to a generalization of the famous conjecture of Vandiver that the class number of the pth real cyclotomic field is never...

The Impact of Agriculture on Maryland’s Economy: Summary

Jeffrey Ferris & Lori Lynch

Determination of Network Connectivity: Algorithms and Applications in Organ Systems

Aimaschana Niruntasukrat
In this dissertation, we develop methods to determine the existence and types of connections between network nodes when the available data are only states (or signals) of such nodes. The proposed method determines the types of connections by examining the nodes' interaction. Determination inaccuracy caused by different reactive time scales between nodes is addressed by using wavelet analysis. After the network signals are decomposed into signals at different scales, the most prominent scale of each...


Qian Shao
Since the 1985 discovery of C60, fullerenes have emerged as key nanoelectronic components and promising biomedical probes. Understanding how to direct-and switch-the packing arrangements of fullerenes and their chemical derivatives at interfaces is important for advanced applications. In this thesis work, we explore structural motifs that can be achieved in films of the fullerene derivatives, phenyl-C61-butyric-acid methyl ester (C60-PCBM) and phenyl-C71-butyric-acid methyl ester (C70-PCBM), and metal phthalocyanines (ZnPc and tetranitro-ZnPc(TN-ZnPc)), at neat and chemically-modified Au...

Doing Time: Understanding the Dynamic Effects of Paternal Incarceration on Children's Development of Aggressive and Delinquent Behaviors

Mauri J. Matsuda
Nearly three million children in the United States are estimated to have a parent incarcerated in a federal or state prison; countless others have experienced a mother's or father's incarceration in a prison or local jail at some point throughout childhood or adolescence. Growing evidence demonstrates that incarceration of a parent is associated with a host of undesirable child outcomes, particularly increased levels of externalizing and antisocial behaviors among boys of incarcerated fathers. Although studies...

Directed Graphs: Fixed-Parameter Tractability & Beyond

Rajesh Chitnis
Most interesting optimization problems on graphs are NP-hard, implying that (unless P=NP) there is no polynomial time algorithm that solves all the instances of an NP-hard problem exactly. However, classical complexity measures the running time as a function of only the overall input size. The paradigm of parameterized complexity was introduced by Downey and Fellows to allow for a more refined multivariate analysis of the running time. In parameterized complexity, each problem comes along with...


Investigations of electrochemical reactions on solid oxide based electrochemical cells under operating conditions are described in this dissertation. Operando capabilities of ambient pressure X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy are utilized to study the specially designed single-sided electrochemical cells and to extract detailed information of cell processes. Mixed-ionic-electronic-conducting materials of cerium oxide are used as electrocatalysts. Mappings of local surface potentials and length scales of the electrochemically active region on thin film CeO2-x electrocatalysts are obtained in studies...

Characterization of luminous bacteria as a biosensing element for detection of acrylamide in food.

Maryam Ganjavi
World Health Organization (WHO) has called for further research into acrylamide, a known carcinogen and neurotoxin in animals, following emergency consultations to review data from studies that revealed the presence of acrylamide in starch-based foods fried and baked at high temperatures. The presence of acrylamide in food is recognized as a major concern in humans based on the ability to induce cancer and heritable mutations in laboratory animals. The objective of this study was to...

Large Nc Baryons and Baryonic Matter with Heavy Quarks

Prabal Adhikari
In this dissertation, Quantum Chromodynamics (QCD) is explored at finite baryon density in a combined heavy quark and 't Hooft large Nc limit of QCD. Non-relativistic baryons are fully antisymmetric states containing Nc quarks; it was proposed by Witten that baryons can be described through a mean-field picture in which each quark moves in an average potential created by the remaining Nc − 1 quarks. A proof of this mean-field picture is constructed here. Additionally,...

Singing of the Old Order Amish in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania

Yuanyuan Sun Völkl
This dissertation explores the continuity and conformity, as well as changes and diversity of Amish musical life by investigating major rituals, activities, musical genres and repertories of the Lancaster Old Order Amish. The three major areas this dissertation studies are church singing, youth singing, and wedding singing. The two main musical genres are 1) unison singing of slow-tunes in German and 2) fast-tunes in unison and four-part harmony in both German and English. This study...

'Right to the Active City': Public Recreation and Urban Governance in Baltimore

Jacob Bustad
Since the inception of the Baltimore City Department of Recreation and Parks (BCRP) in 1940, public recreation in Baltimore has continued to be restructured in relation to changing modes of urban governance, in particular in regards to the city's network of recreation centers. More recently, the reorganization of recreation resulted in the 2011 Mayor's Recreation Center Task Force plan, which proposed the further reformation of the department and changes to the provision and distribution of...


Ashwini Rekha Sebastian
Environmental shocks, particularly high impact natural disasters, such as earthquakes, floods and droughts, test the boundaries of social resilience and vulnerability. According to the International Disaster Database (EM-DAT), from 1975-2011 the number of natural disasters reported worldwide, along with the number of households affected, gradually increased over this period (Natural Disaster Trends, Center for Research on the Epidemiology of Disasters (CRED)). Economic status of a country did not predict the number of disasters a country...

`Fried chicken belongs to all of us': The Zooarchaeology of Enslaved Foodways on the Long Green, Wye House (18TA314), Talbot County, Maryland

Amanda Tang
This project analyzes the zooarchaeological remains excavated from three slave quarters, located on the Long Green of the Wye House Plantation (18TA314). The zooarchaeological data used dates from about 1650 until 1865. The dissertation focuses on how the late 18th century - archaeologically c. 1770 - was a period of immense change at Wye House and this caused coinciding changes in food consumption. Faunal data is combined with historical and archaeological information to assess the...


Dana Charles Andersen
The first chapter explores the effect of credit constraints on production-generated pollution emissions. I develop a theoretical model wherein polluting firms borrow externally to finance investment in various assets, subject to a credit constraint with lenders. The main insight of the model is that credit constraints distort the composition of assets towards over-investment in tangible assets, which can be pledged as collateral, thereby increasing the intensity of pollution emissions. The predictions of the model are...

Goodbye Lenin, Hello Europe? An Empirical Investigation of Subjective Well-being in Transition and Post-transition Economies

Milena Veselinova Nikolova
In this dissertation, I rely on self-reported objective and subjective data to study processes related to acquiring new opportunities and exercising choice in transition and post-transition countries, i.e., the economies in Central and Eastern Europe and the Former Soviet Union, which recently underwent or are still going through transitions to democracy and market economy. The departure point is the proposition that at the macro level, transition consists of marketization and democratization processes but at the...


Soo-Kwang Oh
This dissertation is a mixed methods study of the influence of the "like" feature on how people discuss and understand online news. Habermas's notion of the public sphere was that an inclusive, all-accessible and non-discriminating forum enables participants to deliberate on topics of concern. With increased interactivity and connectivity introduced by new media, commenting features have been heralded as a means to expand and accommodate discussions from audiences. In particular, by allowing people to provide...

Chemical compositions, antioxidant and antiproliferative properties of wheat

Yingjian Lu
To promote its use in nutraceutical and functional ingredients, different growing environments, genotypes, and processing fractions of soft wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) were investigated for their chemical compositions and biological activities. The first study of this research investigated phytochemicals composition and antiproliferative activities of ten wheat bran samples. It was found that the individual wheat bran samples significantly differed in their chemical and biological properties. The second part of this research further studied influences of...

Performance enhancement of heat exchanger coolers with evaporative cooling

Sahil Popli
Air or water cooled heat exchangers (HX) are typically utilized as condensers or coolers for air-conditioning, refrigeration or process cooling applications in both commercial and industrial sector. However, air cooled heat exchanger performance degrades considerably with rise in ambient air temperature and water cooled coolers require considerable pumping power, a cooling tower and may consume a significant amount of water which may come from fresh water sources. Evaporative cooling offers a unique solution to this...

Societal Risk Criteria: History, Current Risks, Risk Aversion, and Scale Effect

Farshad Abedinisohi
In August 2005, Hurricane Katrina caused massive flooding in the city of New Orleans. Eighty-percent of the city was left submerged causing 1833 fatalities and immense economic loss. In the wake of this catastrophic event, the need for concise, consistent, and robust societal risk criteria for dam and levee risk management was felt necessary to guide the assessment of risks obtained from risk analysis. In the United States, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE)...

Adaptive Sensing and Processing for Some Computer Vision Problems

Garrett Warnell
This dissertation is concerned with adaptive sensing and processing in computer vision, specifically through the application of computer vision techniques to non-standard sensors. In the first part, we adapt techniques designed to solve the classical computer vision problem of gradient-based surface reconstruction to the problem of phase unwrapping that presents itself in applications such as interferometric synthetic aperture radar. Specifically, we propose a new formulation of and solution to the classical two-dimensional phase unwrapping problem....

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