Students Perceptions on the Relevance of High School Mathematics in University Education in South Africa
In this study we investigated the relevance of high
school mathematics in university education. The paper particularly
focused on whether the concepts taught in high school are enough for
engineering courses at diploma level. The study identified particular
concepts that are required in engineering courses whether they were
adequately covered in high school. A questionnaire was used to
investigate whether relevant topics were covered in high school. The
respondents were 228 first year students at the Central University
of Technology in the Faculty of Engineering and Information
Technology. The study indicates that there are some topics such
as integration, complex numbers and matrices that are not done at
high schools and are required in engineering courses at university.
It is further observed that some students did not cover the topics
that are in the current syllabus. Female students enter the university
less prepared than their male counterparts. More than 30% of the
respondents in this study felt that high school mathematics was not
useful for them to be able to do engineering courses.
A Case Study of Clinicians’ Perceptions of Enterprise Content Management at Tygerberg Hospital
Healthcare is a human right. The sensitivity of health issues has necessitated the introduction of Enterprise Content Management (ECM) at district hospitals in the Western Cape Province of South Africa. The objective is understanding clinicians’ perception of ECM at their workplace. It is a descriptive case study design of constructivist paradigm. It employed a phenomenological data analysis method using a pattern matching deductive based analytical procedure. Purposive and s4nowball sampling techniques were applied in selecting participants. Clinicians expressed concerns and frustrations using ECM such as, non-integration with other hospital systems. Inadequate access points to ECM. Incorrect labelling of notes and bar-coding causes more time wasted in finding information. System features and/or functions (such as search and edit) are not possible. Hospital management and clinicians are not constantly interacting and discussing. Information turnaround time is unacceptably lengthy. Resolving these problems would involve a positive working relationship between hospital management and clinicians. In addition, prioritising the problems faced by clinicians in relation to relevance can ensure problem-solving in order to meet clinicians’ expectations and hospitals’ objective. Clinicians’ perception should invoke attention from hospital management with regards technology use. The study’s results can be generalised across clinician groupings exposed to ECM at various district hospitals because of professional and hospital homogeneity.
Pre-Service EFL Teachers' Perceptions of Written Corrective Feedback in a Wiki-Based Environment
This paper explores Chilean pre-service teachers' perceptions about the provision of corrective feedback in a wiki environment during the collaborative writing of an argumentative essay. After conducting a semi-structured interview on 22 participants, the data were processed through the content analysis technique. The results show that students have positive perceptions about corrective feedback, provided through a wiki virtual environment, which in turn facilitates feedback provision and impacts language learning effectively. Some of the positive perceptions about virtual feedback refer to permanent access, efficiency, simultaneous revision and immediacy. It would then be advisable to integrate wiki-based feedback as a methodology for the language classroom and collaborative writing tasks.
From Vertigo to Verticality: An Example of Phenomenological Design in Architecture
Architects commonly attempt a depiction of organic forms when their works are inspired by nature, regardless of the building site. Nevertheless it is also possible to try matching structures with natural scenery, by applying a phenomenological approach in terms of spatial operations, regarding perceptions from nature through architectural aspects such as protection, views, and orientation. This method acknowledges a relationship between place and space, where intentions towards tangible facts then become design statements. Although spaces resulting from such a process may present an effective response to the environment, they can also offer further outcomes beyond the realm of form. The hypothesis is that, in addition to recognising a bond between architecture and nature, it is also plausible to associate such perceptions with the inner ambient of buildings, by analysing features such as daylight. The case study of a single-family house in a rainforest near Valdivia, Chilean Patagonia is presented, with the intention of addressing the above notions through a discussion of the actual effects of inhabiting a place by way of a series of insights, including a revision of diagrams and photographs that assist in understanding the implications of this design practice. In addition, figures based on post-occupancy behaviour and daylighting performance relate both architectural and environmental issues to a decision-making process motivated by the observation of nature.
The Effects of an Immigration Policy on the Economic Integration of Migrants and on Natives’ Attitudes: The Case of Syrian Refugees in Turkey
Turkey’s immigration policy is a controversial issue considering its legal, economic, social, and political and human rights dimensions. Formulation of an immigration policy goes hand in hand with political processes, where natives’ attitudes play a significant role. On the other hand, as was the case in Turkey, radical changes made in immigration policy or policies lacking transparency may cause severe reactions by the host society. The underlying discussion paper aims to analyze quantitatively the effects of the existing ‘open door’ immigration policy on the economic integration of Syrian refugees in Turkey, and on the perception of the native population of refugees. For the analysis, semi-structured in-depth interviews and focus group interviews have been conducted. After the introduction, a literature review is provided, followed by theoretical background on the explanation of natives’ attitudes towards immigrants. In the next section, a qualitative analysis of natives’ attitudes towards Syrian refugees is presented with the subtopics of (i) awareness, general opinions and expectations, (ii) open-door policy and management of the migration process, (iii) perception of positive and negative impacts of immigration, (iv) economic integration, and (v) cultural similarity. Results indicate that, natives concurrently have social, economic and security concerns regarding refugees, while difficulties regarding security and economic integration of refugees stand out. Socio-economic characteristics of the respondents, such as the educational level and employment status, are not sufficient to explain the overall attitudes towards refugees, while they can be used to explain the awareness of the respondents and the priority of the concerns felt.
Community Perceptions and Attitudes Regarding Wildlife Crime in South Africa
Wildlife crime is a complex problem with many interconnected facets, which are generally responded to in parts or fragments in efforts to “break down” the complexity into manageable components. However, fragmentation increases complexity as coherence and cooperation become diluted. A whole-of-society approach has been developed towards finding a common goal and integrated approach to preventing wildlife crime. As part of this development, research was conducted in rural communities adjacent to conservation areas in South Africa to define and comprehend the challenges faced by them, and to understand their perceptions of wildlife crime. The results of the research showed that the perceptions of community members varied - most were in favor of conservation and of protecting rhinos, only if they derive adequate benefit from it. Regardless of gender, income level, education level, or access to services, conservation was perceived to be good and bad by the same people. Even though people in the communities are poor, a willingness to stop rhino poaching does exist amongst them, but their perception of parks not caring about people triggered an attitude of not being willing to stop, prevent or report poaching. Understanding the nuances, the history, the interests and values of community members, and the drivers behind poaching mind-sets (intrinsic or driven by transnational organized crime) is imperative to create sustainable and resilient communities on multiple levels that make a substantial positive impact on people’s lives, but also conserve wildlife for posterity.
Students’ Perceptions of Mobile Learning: Case Study of Kuwait
Mobile learning is a new learning landscape that offers opportunity for collaborative, personal, informal, and students’ centered learning environment. In implementing any learning system such as a mobile learning environment, learners’ expectations should be taken into consideration. However, there is a lack of studies on this aspect, particularly in the context of Kuwait higher education (HE) institutions. This study focused on how students perceive the use of mobile devices in learning. Although m-learning is considered as an effective educational tool in developed countries, it is not yet fully utilized in Kuwait. The study reports on the results of a survey conducted on 623 HE students in Kuwait to a better understand students' perceptions and opinions about the effectiveness of using mobile learning systems. An analysis of quantitative survey data is presented. The findings indicated that Kuwait HE students are very familiar with mobile devices and its applications. The results also reveal that students have positive perceptions of m-learning, and believe that video-based social media applications enhance the teaching and learning process.
Entrepreneurs’ Perceptions of the Economic, Social and Physical Impacts of Tourism
The objective of this study is to determine how entrepreneurs perceive the economic, social and physical impacts of tourism. The study was conducted in the city of Afyonkarahisar, Turkey, which is rich in thermal tourism resources and investments. A survey was used as the data collection method, and the questionnaire was applied to 472 entrepreneurs. A simple random sampling method was used to identify the sample. Independent sampling t-tests and ANOVA tests were used to analyse the data obtained. Additionally, some statistically significant differences (p<0.05) were found based on the participants’ demographic characteristics regarding their opinions about the social, economic and physical impacts of tourism activities.
Fuzzy Inference Based Modelling of Perception Reaction Time of Drivers
Perception reaction time of drivers is an outcome of human thought process, which is vague and approximate in nature and also varies from driver to driver. So, in this study a fuzzy logic based model for prediction of the same has been presented, which seems suitable. The control factors, like, age, experience, intensity of driving of the driver, speed of the vehicle and distance of stimulus have been considered as premise variables in the model, in which the perception reaction time is the consequence variable. Results show that the model is able to explain the impacts of the control factors on perception reaction time properly.
Sound Selection for Gesture Sonification and Manipulation of Virtual Objects
New sensors and technologies – such as microphones,
touchscreens or infrared sensors – are currently making their
appearance in the automotive sector, introducing new kinds of
Human-Machine Interfaces (HMIs). The interactions with such tools
might be cognitively expensive, thus unsuitable for driving tasks.
It could for instance be dangerous to use touchscreens with a
visual feedback while driving, as it distracts the driver’s visual
attention away from the road. Furthermore, new technologies in
car cockpits modify the interactions of the users with the central
system. In particular, touchscreens are preferred to arrays of buttons
for space improvement and design purposes. However, the buttons’
tactile feedback is no more available to the driver, which makes
such interfaces more difficult to manipulate while driving. Gestures
combined with an auditory feedback might therefore constitute an
interesting alternative to interact with the HMI. Indeed, gestures can
be performed without vision, which means that the driver’s visual
attention can be totally dedicated to the driving task. In fact, the
auditory feedback can both inform the driver with respect to the task
performed on the interface and on the performed gesture, which might
constitute a possible solution to the lack of tactile information. As
audition is a relatively unused sense in automotive contexts, gesture
sonification can contribute to reducing the cognitive load thanks
to the proposed multisensory exploitation. Our approach consists
in using a virtual object (VO) to sonify the consequences of the
gesture rather than the gesture itself. This approach is motivated
by an ecological point of view: Gestures do not make sound, but
their consequences do. In this experiment, the aim was to identify
efficient sound strategies, to transmit dynamic information of VOs to
users through sound. The swipe gesture was chosen for this purpose,
as it is commonly used in current and new interfaces. We chose
two VO parameters to sonify, the hand-VO distance and the VO
velocity. Two kinds of sound parameters can be chosen to sonify the
VO behavior: Spectral or temporal parameters. Pitch and brightness
were tested as spectral parameters, and amplitude modulation as a
temporal parameter. Performances showed a positive effect of sound
compared to a no-sound situation, revealing the usefulness of sounds
to accomplish the task.
Beef Cattle Farmers Perception toward Urea Mineral Molasses Block
Urea Mineral Molasses Block is very important for beef cattle, because it can increase beef production. The purpose of this research was to know beef cattle farmers’ perception towards Urea Mineral Molasses Block (UMMB). This research was conducted in Gowa Regency, South Sulawesi, Indonesia in 2016. The population of this research were all beef cattle farmers. Sample was chosen through purposive sampling. Data were collected through observation and face to face with deep interview using questionnaire. Variables of perception consisted of relative advantage, compatibility, complexity, observability and triability. There were 10 questions. The answer for each question was scored by 1, 2, 3 which refer to disagree, agree enough, strongly agree. The data were analyzed descriptively using frequency distribution. The research revealed that beef cattle farmers’ perception towards UMMB was categorized as strongly agree.
Recommendations as a Key Aspect for Online Learning Personalization: Perceptions of Teachers and Students
Higher education students are increasingly enrolling in online courses, they are, at the same time, generating data about their learning process in the courses. Data collected in those technology enhanced learning spaces can be used to identify patterns and therefore, offer recommendations/personalized courses to future online students. Moreover, recommendations are considered key aspects for personalization in online learning. Taking into account the above mentioned context, the aim of this paper is to explore the perception of higher education students and teachers towards receiving recommendations in online courses. The study was carried out with 322 students and 10 teachers from two different faculties (Engineering and Education) from Mondragon University. Online questionnaires and face to face interviews were used to gather data from the participants. Results from the questionnaires show that most of the students would like to receive recommendations in their online courses as a guide in their learning process. Findings from the interviews also show that teachers see recommendations useful for their students’ learning process. However, teachers believe that specific pedagogical training is required. Conclusions can also be drawn as regards the importance of personalization in technology enhanced learning. These findings have significant implications for those who train online teachers due to the fact that pedagogy should be the driven force and further training on the topic could be required. Therefore, further research is needed to better understand the impact of recommendations on online students’ learning process and draw some conclusion on pedagogical concerns.
Perceptions of Greenhouse Vegetable Growers Regarding Use of Biological Control Practices: A Case Study in Jiroft County, Iran
The main purpose of this study was to investigate perception of greenhouse vegetable growers regarding use of biological control practices during the growing season. The statistical population of the study included greenhouse vegetable growers in Jiroft county (N=1862). A sample of 137 vegetable growers was selected, using random sampling method. Data were collected via a questionnaire. The validity of the instrument was obtained by the faculty members of the Department of Agricultural Development and Management in the University of Tehran. Cronbach’s alpha was applied to estimate the reliability which showed a high reliability for the instrument. Data was analyzed using SPSS/Windows 13.5. The results revealed that greenhouse vegetable growers had moderate level of perception regarding biological control practices. Levels of vegetable growers’ perceptions regarding biological control practices were different on the basis of their academic qualifications as well as educational level and job. In addition, the results indicated that about 54.1% of variations in vegetable growers’ perceptions could be explained by variables such as awareness of biological control practices, knowledge on pests, annual production and age.
New Insights for Soft Skills Development in Vietnamese Business Schools: Defining Essential Soft Skills for Maximizing Graduates’ Career Success
Within Vietnam's system of higher education, its
schools of business play a vital role in supporting the country’s
economic objectives. However, the crucial contribution of soft skills
for maximal success within the business sector has to date not been
adequately recognized by its business schools. This being so, the
development of the business school curriculum in Vietnam has not
been able to 'catch up', so to say, with the burgeoning need of
students for a comprehensive soft skills program designed to meet the
national and global business objectives of their potential employers.
The burden of the present paper is first to reveal the results of our
survey in Vietnam which make explicit the extent to which major
Vietnamese industrial employers’ value the potential role that soft
skill competencies can play in maximizing business success. Our
final task will be to determine which soft skills employers discern as
best serving to maximize the economic interests of Vietnam within
the global marketplace. Semi-structured telephone interviews have
been conducted with the 15 representative Head Employers of
Vietnam's reputedly largest and most successful of the diverse
business enterprises across Vietnam. The findings of the study
indicate that all respondents highly value the increasing importance
of soft skills in business success. Our critical analysis of respondent
data reveals that 19 essential soft skills are deemed by employers as
integral to business workplace efficacy and should thus be integrated
into the formal business curriculum. We are confident that our study
represents the first comprehensive and specific survey yet undertaken
within the business sector in Vietnam which accesses and analyses
the opinions of representative employers from major companies
across the country in regard to the growing importance of 19 specific
soft skills essential for maximizing overall business success. Our
research findings also reveal that the integration into business school
curriculums nationwide of the soft skills we have identified is of
paramount importance to advance the national and global economic
interests of Vietnam.
The Perception on 21st Century Skills of Nursing Instructors and Nursing Students at Boromarajonani College of Nursing, Chonburi
The aim of this descriptive study was to determine the perception of 21st century skills among nursing professors and nursing students at Boromarajonani College of Nursing, Chonburi. A total of 38 nursing professors and 75 second year nursing students took part in the study. Data were collected by 21st century skills questionnaires comprised of 63 items. Descriptive statistics were used to describe the findings. The results have shown that the overall mean scores of the perception of nursing professors on 21st century skills were at a high level. The highest mean scores were recorded for computing and ICT literacy, and career and leaning skills. The lowest mean scores were recorded for reading and writing and mathematics. The overall mean scores on perception of nursing students on 21st century skills were at a high level. The highest mean scores were recorded for computer and ICT literacy, for which the highest item mean scores were recorded for competency on computer programs. The lowest mean scores were recorded for the reading, writing, and mathematics components, in which the highest item mean score was reading Thai correctly, and the lowest item mean score was English reading and translate to other correctly. The findings from this study have shown that the perceptions of nursing professors were consistent with those of nursing students. Moreover, any activities aiming to raise capacity on English reading and translate information to others should be taken into the consideration.
Positioning Analysis of Atlantic Canadian Provinces as Travel Destinations by Americans
This study analyzes Americans’ views of four Atlantic Canadian provinces as travel destinations regarding specific destination attributes for a pleasure trip, awareness (heard) of the destinations, past visit to the destinations during the prior two years, and intention to visit in the next two years. Results indicate that American travellers perceived the four Atlantic Canadian provinces as separate and distinct when rating best-fit destination attributes to each destination. The results suggest that travel destinations, specifically the four selected destinations, must be prepared to differentiate their destination’s image and the range of experiences and services to appeal and attract more American travellers.
Web 2.0 in Higher Education: The Instructors’ Acceptance in Higher Educational Institutes in Kingdom of Bahrain
Since the beginning of distance education with the rapid evolution of technology, the social network plays a vital role in the educational process to enforce the interaction been the learners and teachers. There are many Web 2.0 technologies, services and tools designed for educational purposes. This research aims to investigate instructors’ acceptance towards web-based learning systems in higher educational institutes in Kingdom of Bahrain. Questionnaire is used to investigate the instructors’ usage of Web 2.0 and the factors affecting their acceptance. The results confirm that instructors had high accessibility to such technologies. However, patterns of use were complex. Whilst most expressed interest in using online technologies to support learning activities, learners seemed cautious about other values associated with web-based system, such as the shared construction of knowledge in a public format. The research concludes that there are main factors that affect instructors’ adoption which are security, performance expectation, perceived benefits, subjective norm, and perceived usefulness.
Identifying Teachers’ Perception of Integrity in School-Based Assessment Practice: A Case Study
This case study aims to identify teachers’ perception as regards integrity in School-Ba sed Assessment (PBS) practice. This descriptive study involved 9 teachers from 4 secondary schools in 3 districts in the state of Perak. The respondents had undergone an integrity in PBS Practice interview using a focused group discussion method. The overall findings showed that the teachers believed that integrity in PBS practice could be achieved by adjusting the teaching methods align with learning objectives and the students’ characteristics. Many teachers, parents and student did not understand the best practice of PBS. This would affect the integrity in PBS practice. Teachers did not emphasis the principles and ethics. Their integrity as an innovative public servant may also be affected with the frequently changing assessment system, lack of training and no prior action research. The analysis of findings showed that the teachers viewed that organizational integrity involving the integrity of PBS was difficult to be implemented based on the expectations determined by Malaysia Ministry of Education (KPM). A few elements which assisted in the achievement of PBS integrity were the training, students’ understanding, the parents’ understanding of PBS, environment (involving human resources such as support and appreciation and non-human resources such as technology infrastructure readiness and media). The implications of this study show that teachers, as the PBS implementers, have a strong influence on the integrity of PBS. However, the transformation of behavior involving PBS integrity among teachers requires the stabilisation of support and infrastructure in order to enable the teachers to implement PBS in an ethical manner.
Self-Efficacy Perceptions and the Attitudes of Prospective Teachers towards Assessment and Evaluation
Making the right decisions about students depends on teachers’ use of the assessment and evaluation techniques effectively. In order to do that, teachers should have positive attitudes and adequate self-efficacy perception towards assessment and evaluation. The purpose of this study is to investigate relationship between self-efficacy perception and the attitudes of prospective teachers towards assessment and evaluation and what kind of differences these issues have in terms of a variety of demographic variables. The study group consisted of 277 prospective teachers who have been studying in different departments of Marmara University, Faculty of Education. In this study, ‘Personal Information Form’, ‘A Perceptual Scale for Measurement and Evaluation of Prospective Teachers Self-Efficacy in Education’ and ‘Attitudes toward Educational Measurement Inventory’ are applied. As a result, positive correlation was found between self-efficacy perceptions and the attitudes of prospective teachers towards assessment and evaluation. Considering different departments, there is a significant difference between the mean score of attitudes of prospective teachers and between the mean score of self-efficacy perceptions of them. However, considering variables of attending statistics class and the class types at the graduated high school, there is no significant difference between the mean score of attitudes of prospective teachers and between the mean score of self-efficacy perceptions of them.
Spatiotemporal Analysis of Visual Evoked Responses Using Dense EEG
A comprehensive study of object recognition in the human brain requires combining both spatial and temporal analysis of brain activity. Here, we are mainly interested in three issues: the time perception of visual objects, the ability of discrimination between two particular categories (objects vs. animals), and the possibility to identify a particular spatial representation of visual objects. Our experiment consisted of acquiring dense electroencephalographic (EEG) signals during a picture-naming task comprising a set of objects and animals’ images. These EEG responses were recorded from nine participants. In order to determine the time perception of the presented visual stimulus, we analyzed the Event Related Potentials (ERPs) derived from the recorded EEG signals. The analysis of these signals showed that the brain perceives animals and objects with different time instants. Concerning the discrimination of the two categories, the support vector machine (SVM) was applied on the instantaneous EEG (excellent temporal resolution: on the order of millisecond) to categorize the visual stimuli into two different classes. The spatial differences between the evoked responses of the two categories were also investigated. The results showed a variation of the neural activity with the properties of the visual input. Results showed also the existence of a spatial pattern of electrodes over particular regions of the scalp in correspondence to their responses to the visual inputs.
Perception of Secondary Schools’ Students on Computer Education in Federal Capital Territory (FCT-Abuja), Nigeria
Computer education is referred to as the knowledge
and ability to use computers and related technology efficiently, with a
range of skills covering levels from basic use to advance. Computer
continues to make an ever-increasing impact on all aspect of human
endeavours such as education. With numerous benefits of computer
education, what are the insights of students on computer education?
This study investigated the perception of senior secondary school
students on computer education in Federal Capital Territory (FCT),
Abuja, Nigeria. A sample of 7500 senior secondary schools students
was involved in the study, one hundred (100) private and fifty (50)
public schools within FCT. They were selected by using simple
random sampling technique. A questionnaire [PSSSCEQ] was
developed and validated through expert judgement and reliability coefficient
of 0.84 was obtained. It was used to gather relevant data on
computer education. Findings confirmed that the students in the FCT
had positive perception on computer education. Some factors were
identified that affect students’ perception on computer education. The
null hypotheses were tested using t-test and ANOVA statistical
analyses at 0.05 level of significance. Based on these findings, some
recommendations were made which include competent teachers
should be employed into all secondary schools. This will help
students to acquire relevant knowledge in computer education,
technological supports should be provided to all secondary schools;
this will help the users (students) to solve specific problems in
computer education and financial supports should be provided to
procure computer facilities that will enhance the teaching and the
learning of computer education.
Analyzing the Perception of Key Terms in E-Learning in Academia: Case Study of Princess Nourah Bint Abdulrahman University
A university-wide survey to obtain baseline data
regarding the perceptions of key terms related to e-learning and
distance learning among students, faculty and staff was conducted to
help achieve the goals of Princess Nourah bint Abdulrahman
University’s and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s National Center for
e-learning and Distance Learning. This paper comprises a relevant
literature review, the survey methodology, preliminary data analysis,
discussion, and recommendations for further research. The major
findings indicate a deep and wide differentiation of understanding
among users of critical key terms.
Window Display Design of Thai Craft Product Affecting Perceptions of Thai and Foreign Tourists
A product’s perceived value may increase purchase intention. Value perceptions may differ among cultures. Window displays can be used to increase products’ information and value. This study aims to investigate the relationship between window display design elements and value perceptions of local products between two different cultures. The research methodology is based on survey research. Several window displays in favorite of tourist spots were selected as a unit of study. Also, 100 tourists (56 Thai tourists and 44 foreign tourists) were asked to complete a questionnaire. T-Tests were used to analyze the comparison. Then, the results were compared to Thai and foreign tourists. Finally, the results find that Thai and foreign tourists have different perception towards three design elements that are size of the window, props and colour lighting. The differences of their perceptions signify the different cultural values they adhere to.
The Effect of Diversity Sensitive Orientation on Job Satisfaction and Turnover Intention
The main purpose of this paper is to examine the effect of diversity sensitive orientation on job satisfaction and turnover intention. Diversity sensitive orientation is the attitude of the individual to respect and accommodate diversity. This is focused on an individual’s perception of diversity. Although being made from the most diversity related research team and organizational level, this study deals with diversity issues at the individual level. To test the proposed research model and hypothesis, the data were collected from 291 Korean employees. The study conducted a confirmatory factor analysis for the validity test. Furthermore, structural equation modeling (SEM) was employed to test the hypothesized relationship in the conceptual model. The results of this paper were as followings: First, diversity sensitive orientation was positively related to job satisfaction. Second, diversity sensitive orientation was negatively related to turnover intention. In other words, the positive influence of the diversity sensitive orientation has been verified. Based on the findings, this study suggested implications and directions for future research.
Top-Down Influences to Multistable Perception: Evidence from Temporal Dynamics
We have studied the temporal characteristics of
bistable perception of the stimuli of two types: one involves
alterations in a perceived depth and another one has an ambiguous
content. We used the Necker lattice and lines of shadowed circles
ambiguously perceived either as spheres or holes as stimuli of the
first type. The Winson figure (the Eskimo/Indian picture) was a
stimulus of the second type. We have analyzed how often the
reversals occurred (reversal rate) and for how long each of the two
interpretations, or percepts, was observed during one presentation
(stability durations). For all three ambiguous images the reversal rate
and the stability durations had similar values, which provide another
evidence for a significant role of top-down processes in multistable
Valuation of Green Commercial Office Building: A Preliminary Study of Malaysian Valuers’ Insight
Malaysia’s green building development is gaining
momentum and green buildings have become a key focus area,
especially within the commercial sector with the encouragement of
government legislation and policy. Due to the emerging awareness
among the market players’ views of the benefits associated with the
ownership of green buildings in Malaysia, there is a need for valuers
to incorporate consideration of sustainability into their assessments of
property market value to ensure the green buildings continue to
increase in the market. This paper analyses the valuers’ current
perception on the valuation practices with regard to the green issues
in Malaysia. The study was based on a survey of registered real estate
valuers and the experts whose work related to valuation in the Klang
Valley area to rate their view regarding the perception on valuation of
green building. The findings present evidence that even though
Malaysian valuers have limited knowledge of green buildings, they
recognise the importance of incorporating the green features in the
valuation process. The inclusion of incorporating the green features
in valuations in practice was hindered by the inadequacy of sufficient
transaction data in the market. Furthermore, valuers experienced
difficulty in identifying what are the various input parameters of
green building and how to adjust it in order to reflect the benefit of
sustainability features correctly in the valuation process. This paper
focuses on the present challenges confronted by Malaysian valuers
with regards to incorporating the green features in their valuation.
Learners’ Perceptions of Tertiary Level Teachers’ Code Switching: A Vietnamese Perspective
The literature on language teaching and second
language acquisition has been largely driven by monolingual
ideology with a common assumption that a second language (L2) is
best taught and learned in the L2 only. The current study challenges
this assumption by reporting learners' positive perceptions of tertiary
level teachers' code switching practices in Vietnam. The findings of
this study contribute to our understanding of code switching practices
in language classrooms from a learners' perspective.
Data were collected from student participants who were working
towards a Bachelor degree in English within the English for Business
Communication stream through the use of focus group interviews.
The literature has documented that this method of interviewing has a
number of distinct advantages over individual student interviews. For
instance, group interactions generated by focus groups create a more
natural environment than that of an individual interview because they
include a range of communicative processes in which each individual
may influence or be influenced by others - as they are in their real
life. The process of interaction provides the opportunity to obtain the
meanings and answers to a problem that are "socially constructed
rather than individually created" leading to the capture of real-life
data. The distinct feature of group interaction offered by this
technique makes it a powerful means of obtaining deeper and richer
data than those from individual interviews. The data generated
through this study were analysed using a constant comparative
approach. Overall, the students expressed positive views of this
practice indicating that it is a useful teaching strategy. Teacher code
switching was seen as a learning resource and a source supporting
language output. This practice was perceived to promote student
comprehension and to aid the learning of content and target language
knowledge. This practice was also believed to scaffold the students'
language production in different contexts. However, the students
indicated their preference for teacher code switching to be
constrained, as extensive use was believed to negatively impact on
their L2 learning and trigger cognitive reliance on the L1 for L2
learning. The students also perceived that when the L1 was used to a
great extent, their ability to develop as autonomous learners was
This study found that teacher code switching was supported in
certain contexts by learners, thus suggesting that there is a need for
the widespread assumption about the monolingual teaching approach
to be re-considered.
National Image in the Age of Mass Self-Communication: An Analysis of Internet Users' Perception of Portugal
Nowadays, massification of Internet access represents one of the major challenges to the traditional powers of the State, among which the power to control its external image. The virtual world has also sparked the interest of social sciences which consider it a new field of study, an immense open text where sense is expressed. In this paper, that immense text has been accessed to so as to understand the perception Internet users from all over the world have of Portugal. Ours is a quantitative and qualitative approach, as we have resorted to buzz, thematic and category analysis. The results confirm the predominance of sea stereotype in others' vision of the Portuguese people, and evidence that national image has adapted to network communication through processes of individuation and paganization.
Perception and Implementation of Machine Translation Applications by the Iranian English Translators
The present study is an attempt to provide a relatively
comprehensive preview of the Iranian English translators’ perception
on Machine Translation. Furthermore, the study tries to shed light on
the status of implementation of Machine Translation among the
Iranian English Translators. To reach the aforementioned objectives,
the Localization Industry Standards Association’s questioner for
measuring perceptions with regard to the adoption of a technology
innovation was adapted and used to investigate the perception and
implementation of Machine Translation applications by the Iranian
English language translators. The participants of the study were 224
last-year undergraduate Iranian students of English translation at 10
universities across the country. The study revealed a very low level of
adoption and a very high level of willingness to get familiar with and
learn about Machine Translation, as well as a positive perception of
and attitude toward Machine Translation by the Iranian English
Annoyance Caused by Air Pollution: A Comparative Study of Two Industrialized Regions
Although there had been a many studies that shows
the impact of air pollution on physical health, comparatively less was
known of human behavioral responses and annoyance impacts.
Annoyance caused by air pollution is a public health problem because
it can be an ambient stressor causing stress and disease and can affect
quality of life. The objective of this work is to evaluate the
annoyance caused by air pollution in two different industrialized
urban areas, Dunkirk (France) and Vitoria (Brazil). The populations
of these cities often report feeling annoyed by dust. Surveys were
conducted, and the collected data were analyzed using statistical
analyses. The results show that sociodemographic variables,
importance of air quality, perceived industrial risk, perceived air
pollution and occurrence of health problems play important roles in
the perceived annoyance. These results show the existence of a
common problem in geographically distant areas and allow
stakeholders to develop prevention strategies.