507 Works

INCREASING SOCIAL INCLUSION FOR CHILDREN WITH DISABILITIES IN FAITH-BASED SETTINGS

Valerie Miller
The aim of this dissertation is to increase the body of research in occupational therapy about how to increase the social inclusion of children with disabilities in faith-based settings. Even since the advent of important legislation like the Americans with Disabilities Act, which paved the way for community participation for individuals with disabilities, individuals with disabilities continue to face barriers to participating in society. Decreased inclusion for individuals with disabilities is seen throughout all sectors...

FACTORS IN THE SUCCESS OF FEMALE COMPUTING MAJORS IN COMMUNITY COLLEGES

Melanie Williamson
Historically, the role of women in computing changes over time as does their presence in the field. In 1985, 37% of computer science bachelor’s degree recipients were women, but in recent years, that number has decreased and currently holds at, around, 18%. Using a mixed methods approach, the study looked at the success of women enrolled in a computing degree program at a community college and the impact that self-efficacy, involvement in academic support opportunities,...

Impact of Feeding Foods Containing Industrial Hemp-Derived Cannabidiol on Canine Health and Well-Being

Elizabeth Morris
Anecdotal evidence of beneficial behavioral and health effects of cannabidiol (CBD) use in companion animals has amplified the need to elucidate safety and potential impacts of CBD use. The purpose of this investigation was to determine the impact of industrial hemp-derived CBD administration on canine health and well-being. We hypothesized that CBD would produce beneficial effects on canine behavior without negatively impacting animal health. Dog treats were formulated to include CBD and shown to be...

LEVERAGING CHEMICAL AND COMPUTATIONAL BIOLOGY TO PROBE THE CELLULOSE SYNTHASE COMPLEX

Kirtley Amos
Cellular expansion in plants is a complex process driven by the constraint of internal cellular turgor pressure by an expansible cell wall. The main structural element of the cell wall is cellulose. Cellulose is vital to plant fitness and the protein complex that creates it is an excellent target for small molecule inhibition to create herbicides. In the following thesis many small molecules (SMs) from a diverse library were screened in search of new cellulose...

Multi-stream Longitudinal Data Analysis using Deep Learning

Sajjad Fouladvand
Longitudinal healthcare data encompasses all tasks where patients information are collected at multiple follow-up times. Analyzing this data is critical in addressing many real world problems in healthcare such as disease prediction and prevention. In this thesis, technical challenges in analyzing longitudinal administrative claims data are addressed and novel deep learning based models are proposed for multi-stream data analysis and disease prediction tasks. These algorithms and frameworks are assessed mainly on substance use disorders prediction...

Robust RNA Integrity-to-Neuronal Gene Expression Association in Autopsy Brain Tissue Not Explained by Post-Mortem Variables; and Acute Behavioral Stress Does Not Alter RNA Quality, While Progesterone Protects Against Effects of Stress Exposure

Eleanor Johnson
Transcriptional profiling (TP) is a common tool to determine RNA expression levels. It allows for thousands of genes to be analyzed simultaneously, and determines differences in gene expression levels due to various pathologies. RNA quality also impacts the reported expression level. One of the most common approaches for assessing RNA quality is Agilent Technology’s RNA integrity number (RIN). The use of RINs allowed scientists to standardize the assessment and reporting of RNA quality by predominantly...

Metabolic and Electrophysiological Effects of Fibroblast Growth Factor 19 in the Dorsal Vagal Complex

Jordan Wean
The dorsal vagal complex (DVC) is an important homeostatic regulatory center located in the hindbrain that alters vagal parasympathetic activity in response to central, viscerosensory, and humoral cues. Within the DVC, second-order sensory neurons in the nucleus tractus solitarius (NTS) integrate ascending vagal sensory input with descending regulatory inputs from higher brain areas and respond to circulating hormones and glucose. In turn, the NTS projects to the dorsal motor nucleus of the vagus (DMV) which...

THE INFLUENCE OF FORMAL MENTORING ON TEACHER BELIEFS OF K-12 CLASSROOM TECHNOLOGY USE DURING A GLOBAL PANDEMIC

Anthony Arbisi
This dissertation explores the influence and transfer of knowledge related to instructional technology that occurs in the formal teacher mentoring relationship of seven mentoring dyads in a suburban Missouri public school district. This multiple case study was performed during the COVID-19 pandemic during the 2020-2021 school year. The unit of analysis in this study was a mentoring dyad that consisted of an experienced mentor teacher and a novice teacher. A multiple case study method was...

A Computational Fluid-Structure Interaction Method for Simulating Supersonic Parachute Inflation

Jonathan Boustani
Following the successful landing of the Curiosity rover on the Martian surface in 2012, NASA/JPL conducted the low-density supersonic decelerator (LDSD) missions to develop large diameter parachutes to land the increasingly heavier payloads being sent to the Martian surface. Unexpectedly, both of the tested parachutes failed far below their design loads. It became clear that there was an inability to model and predict loads that occur during supersonic parachute inflation. In this dissertation, a new...

The Development of Structural Hollow Carbon Fibers from a Multifilament Segmented Arc Spinneret

Elizabeth Morris
Carbon fiber is an ideal material for structural applications requiring high strength and stiffness and low weight. Yet it has seen only incremental improvements in properties over the last few decades. Carbon fibers remain limited in attaining their theoretical tensile strength and modulus, largely due to defects in their structure, some of which stem from the fiber production process itself. Through the mitigation of defect formation as well as approaches to decrease fiber linear density,...

Metaphor and the Struggle between Populism and Liberal Democracy

Daniel Cole
Populist movements have emerged the world over, appearing even in countries in which it had long been assumed that liberal democracy was unassailable. Scholars have been grappling with the concept of populism for decades, but as populists have won victories close to home, the research has taken on a heightened sense of urgency. Two of the common theses that have appeared in the recent literature are, (a) populism is opposed to liberal democracy, and (b)...

INVESTIGATION OF THE BIOSYNTHESIS OF THE NUCLEOSIDE ANTIBIOTIC SPHAERIMICIN

Jonathan Overbay
Antibiotic-resistance has become a widespread problem in the United States and across the globe. Meanwhile, new antibiotics are entering the clinic at an alarmingly low rate. Highly-modified nucleosides, a class of natural products often produced by actinobacteria, target MraY bacterial translocase I. MraY is a clinically unexploited enzyme target that is ubiquitous and essential to peptidoglycan cell wall biosynthesis. The nucleoside antibiotics known vary in efficacy and the functionalities contributing to improved activity is poorly...

Electric Power Systems and Components for Electric Aircraft

Damien Lawhorn
Electric aircraft have gained increasing attention in recent years due to their potential for environmental and economic benefits over conventional airplanes. In order to offer competitive flight times and payload capabilities, electric aircraft power systems (EAPS) must exhibit extremely high efficiencies and power densities. While advancements in enabling technologies have progressed the development of high performance EAPS, further research is required. One challenge in the design of EAPS is determining the best topology to be...

THE ANTITHESIS OF ‘BUSINESS AS USUAL’

Chelsea Cutright
Youth in Tanzania make up the majority of the current growing population and therefore are increasingly a focus of local and international development concern, specifically as the rates of urban growth and unemployment are also increasing. This research builds upon existing anthropological literature, which largely addresses contemporary and urban African youths as “problems” in dire need of governmental intervention and international solutions. Through explorations of the ways in which Tanzanian youth are actively and creatively...

Neural Representations of Concepts and Texts for Biomedical Information Retrieval

Jiho Noh
Information retrieval (IR) methods are an indispensable tool in the current landscape of exponentially increasing textual data, especially on the Web. A typical IR task involves fetching and ranking a set of documents (from a large corpus) in terms of relevance to a user's query, which is often expressed as a short phrase. IR methods are the backbone of modern search engines where additional system-level aspects including fault tolerance, scale, user interfaces, and session maintenance...

ENHANCING EVIDENCE-BASED TOBACCO TREATMENT SERVICES FOR CLIENTS WITH MENTAL ILLNESSES

Janet Otachi
Tobacco users with mental illnesses (MI) have continued to experience disparate rates of tobacco use, related illnesses and mortality. Despite higher rates of tobacco use among clients with MI, few providers in mental health settings deliver evidence based tobacco treatment. If tobacco use is not addressed, clients with MI will continue to experience disproportionate rates of tobacco use and related burden. Utilizing the theory of planned behavior (TPB), this study examined factors associated with provider...

UNDERSTANDING STRUGGLES AND TRIUMPHS OF WIDOWS IN CENTRAL NIGERIA

Meredith Annette Garrison
One in ten African women age 15 or older are widows. Approximately 8 million widows live in Nigeria with many living in extreme poverty. Throughout the nation, widows are subjected to physical and psychological harm from their families and communities following the deaths of their husbands. Women are marginalized across Nigeria, but widowed women often experience ostracization and oppression that leads to poverty. Most widows rely on informal business and petty trading to survive but...

Teacher Decision-Making in Guided Reading

Brittany Worthen
Guided reading provides teachers the opportunity to support students in literacy learning. When planning for and implementing this instructional approach, teachers are required to make various in-advance and in-the-moment decisions that involve responding to students’ instructional needs through adaptive teaching. Grounded in sociocultural and social constructivist theories, this study was designed to understand teacher decision-making within the context of guided reading instruction. Several questions were considered for this study: How do teachers make decisions about...

TRANSFORMING OUTCOMES TO INCREASE PARTICIPATION IN THE INDEPENDENT LIVING PROGRAM SPONSORED BY SUNRISE CHILDREN’S SERVICES

Richard R. Burslem
Research demonstrates the transition for aging-out foster youth evidences they are not equipped with the necessary tools to live a self-sufficient adult life. Many children who age-out of the foster system have encountered trauma at multiple levels. Sunrise Children’s Services is an agency in Kentucky committed to changing negative outcomes for this population of individuals. The optimum goal for children and youth is for them to grow up within their biological family where they receive...

High Performance

Jon Hill
This dissertation examines the area of high performance in elite sport through high performance professionals’ perspectives in the United States Olympic and Paralympic National Governing Bodies. The study’s purpose was to establish a shared meaning of the high performance sport management model by its elements in the athletic arena. Interviews with 16 high performance directors and managers were conducted to establish definitions, backgrounds, and anatomy of high performance in sport: high performance, high performance sport,...

Reimagining Care

Stacie Hatfield
This dissertation draws on fieldwork with Black LGBTQ identifying individuals and communities in Birmingham, Alabama conducted from 2015-2019 as part of a project that reimagines theories of care. Informed by scholars of Black and feminist studies, I conceive of forms of care as negotiations of survival and tactics of thriving that are worked out in everyday practices and discourses among LGBTQ African Americans. I show how histories of racial inequality and centuries of resistance, surviving,...

WHO’S DOING THE DISHES?

M. Ruth Dike
The dissertation uses reproductive labor as a lens to examine how gendered and classed subjectivities are continuously created, performed, and subtly transformed within and outside of urban middle-class Moroccan households. Reproductive labor is broadly defined as unpaid and paid labor associated with caregiving and domestic roles including but not limited to cleaning, cooking, and child care. Subjectivities are the perspectives, feelings, beliefs, and desires of subjects within uneven relations of power. This research is based...

Investigations into the Genetics of Mixed Pathologies in Dementia

Adam Dugan
Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is an irreversible, progressive brain disorder that leads to a loss of memory and thinking skills. While tremendous progress has been made in our understanding of the genetics underlying AD, currently known genetic variants explain only approximately 30% of the heritable risk of developing AD. One hurdle to AD research is that it can only be definitively diagnosed at autopsy, making cruder, clinic-based diagnoses more common. In recent years, several brain pathologies...

Attitude Control and Consensus on SO(3) Using Sinusoids

Roshan A Chavan
We present and analyze kinematic-level and dynamic-level feedback control algorithms for single agent attitude control and multi-agent attitude consensus on SO(3). The kinematic-level algorithms yield attitude feedback controls that are piecewise-continuous sinusoidal angular velocities. The dynamic-level algorithms yield attitude feedback controls that are relative angles of rotational-mass actuators, which are continuous but only piecewise continuously differentiable sinusoids. Furthermore, the dynamic-level algorithms are designed to accommodate actuator stroke constraint. We present application of the dynamic-level control...

Rational Design of Small Molecule Disruptors of Protein-Protein Interactions

Samuel Ofori
Protein-protein interactions (PPIs) are vital to many biological processes, including gene expression, and immune reactions to pathogens. There are approximately 650,000 PPIs in humans with pertinent physiological functions. Aberrant expression of PPIs lead to improper function and contribute to a plethora of disease conditions including cancer. Thus, PPIs represent an enormous target space for drug discovery and chemical probes. Direct targeting of clinically relevant PPIs with small molecules remains an unmet medical need. Development of...

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  • 2022
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  • University of Kentucky
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