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  • Sörqvist, Patrik (författare)
  • The role of working memory capacity in auditory distraction : A review
  • 2010
  • Ingår i: Noise & Health. - Luleå : Luleå tekniska universitet. - 1463-1741 .- 1998-4030. ; 12:49, s. 217-224
  • Forskningsöversikt (refereegranskat)abstract
    • The purpose of this paper was to review the current knowledge on individual differences in susceptibility to the effects of noise on cognition. The literature indicates that at least two functionally different cognitive mechanisms underlie those differences; one is the efficiency by which people process the order between perceptually discrete sound events and the other is related to working memory capacity. The first mechanism seems to be involved only when disruption is a function of conflicting order processes, whereas the other mechanism is involved in a wider range of phenomena including those when attentional capture and conflicting semantic processes form the basis of disruption. Because of this, noise abatement interventions should first of all be directed towards people with poor working memory capacity. Implications for theories of auditory distraction are discussed.
  • Tharani, Soraya (författare)
  • Immigration, security and the public debate on US language policy : A critical discourse analysis of language attitudes in the United States of America
  • 2011
  • Doktorsavhandling (övrigt vetenskapligt)abstract
    • The narrative of the United States is of a "nation of immigrants" in which the language shift patterns of earlier ethnolinguistic groups have tended towards linguistic assimilation through English. In recent years, however, changes in the demographic landscape and language maintenance by non-English speaking immigrants, particularly Hispanics, have been perceived as threats and have led to calls for an official English language policy. This thesis aims to contribute to the study of language policy making from a societal security perspective as expressed in attitudes regarding language and identity originating in the daily interaction between language groups. The focus is on the role of language and American identity in relation to immigration. The study takes an interdisciplinary approach combining language policy studies, security theory, and critical discourse analysis. The material consists of articles collected from four newspapers, namely USA Today, The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, and San Francisco Chronicle between April 2006 and December 2007. Two discourse types are evident from the analysis namely Loyalty and Efficiency. The former is mainly marked by concerns of national identity and contains speech acts of security related to language shift, choice and English for unity. Immigrants are represented as dehumanised, and harmful. Immigration is given as sovereignty-related, racial, and as war. The discourse type of Efficiency is mainly instrumental and contains speech acts of security related to cost, provision of services, health and safety, and social mobility. Immigrants are further represented as a labour resource. These discourse types reflect how the construction of the linguistic 'we' is expected to be maintained. Loyalty is triggered by arguments that the collective identity is threatened and is itself used in reproducing the collective 'we' through hegemonic expressions of monolingualism in the public space and semi-public space. The denigration of immigrants is used as a tool for enhancing societal security through solidarity and as a possible justification for the denial of minority rights. Also, although language acquisition patterns still follow the historical trend of language shift, factors indicating cultural separateness such as the appearance of speech communities or the use of minority languages in the public space and semi-public space have led to manifestations of intolerance. Examples of discrimination and prejudice towards minority groups indicate that the perception of worth of a shared language differs from the actual worth of dominant language acquisition for integration purposes. The study further indicates that the efficient working of the free market by using minority languages to sell services or buy labour is perceived as conflicting with nation-building notions since it may create separately functioning sub-communities with a new cultural capital recognised as legitimate competence. The discourse types mainly represent securitising moves constructing existential threats. The perception of threat and ideas of national belonging are primarily based on a zero-sum notion favouring monolingualism. Further, the identity of the immigrant individual is seen as dynamic and adaptable to assimilationist measures whereas the identity of the state and its members are perceived as static. Also, the study shows that debates concerning language status are linked to extra-linguistic matters. To conclude, policy makers in the US need to consider the relationship between four factors, namely societal security based on collective identity, individual/human security, human rights, and a changing linguistic demography, for proposed language intervention measures to be successful.
  • Hansson, Örjan, 1965- (författare)
  • Studying the views of preservice teachers on the concept of function
  • 2006
  • Doktorsavhandling (övrigt vetenskapligt)abstract
    • This thesis consists of an overview of the subject, where in particular five papers are put into a frame. The research conducted for the thesis concerns the views of preservice teachers on the concept of function. Preservice teachers’ conceptions of the function concept are in particular examined in relation to mathematical statements that can be related to different topics on a variety of levels in mathematics; in this research, concept mapping technique is a research tool of interest. Questions concerning preservice teachers’ conceptions of the significance of functions in mathematics, and the presence of functions in school mathematics, are also considered relevant aspects of their views of functions. The final part of the research study includes an intervention study regarding the concept of function, located to a calculus course as one of the concluding courses in mathematics on the educational programme. There is a range of findings from the study that is summarized and further discussed in the overview part of the thesis. One result, is that preservice teachers in their reasoning show signs of knowledge compartmentalization which is an issue of concern in their development of conceptual frameworks rich in meaningful connections. This might have consequences for their abilities to operate in a constructivist environment and reason with their students from different points of view. The function concepts’ large network of relations to other concepts is frequently omitted in the preservice teachers’ reasoning. One reason for this is that to preservice teachers, properties of functions seem to be results of isolated procedures, associated with operational conceptions rather than structural conceptions of functions. The findings imply that preservice teachers should encounter functions in a variety of context, to develop their views of the concept of function – including frameworks rich of meaningful relations – and realize that the concept of function is one of the underlying concepts of mathematics, and an important concept to introduce to their future students. The preservice teachers’ reflections concerning functions in school mathematics contribute to emphasize the significance of the process of transformation of subject matter knowledge to pedagogical content knowledge. Further results of the research study, and an outline of the implications, are included in the concluding discussion of the overview part of the thesis. The preservice teachers participating in the study are enrolled in a four and a half year teacher preparation program in mathematics and science, grades 4 to 9. The five papers included in the thesis, describe parts of a larger study essentially conducted until the sixth term during the concluding mathematics courses of the program.
  • Dahlén, Leon (författare)
  • Numerical and experimental study of performance of a hydraulic motor
  • 2003
  • Doktorsavhandling (övrigt vetenskapligt)abstract
    • The aim of this study was to develop an understanding of the fluid properties that influence the efficiency of hydraulic systems in a steady-state, especially components in hydrostatic transmission systems under different running conditions. The aim has also been to investigate and model the sources of losses in hydraulic machines, in order to estimate the losses, taking fluid properties into account. Finally, the technique of optimization has been introduced in order to improve the efficiency of a distributor valve in a radial piston hydraulic motor, Marathon M200. From an experimental field-test, which was performed on a belt conveyer using a hydrostatic transmission system, the overall efficiency of the hydrostatic transmission was compared when using a mineral oil, Shell Tellus TX 68, a synthetic fluid, Mobil SHC 526, and a vegetable fluid, Binol Hydrap II. The experimental field-test showed that vegetable and synthetic fluids improve the efficiency compared to mineral oil. The three fluids have the same viscosity but experimental tests showed that the temperature ()- and pressure() -viscosity coefficient differs between them. It was also found that the pressure-viscosity coefficient () of mineral oil was higher compared to vegetable and synthetic fluids. The proposed steady-state model gives greater accuracy regarding overall efficiency than the Wilson model, when examining fluid properties that differ in other aspects than their viscosity. The study has focused on losses in lubricated sliding contacts within a radial piston hydraulic motor, Marathon M200, and an analysis of the losses has been made using the finite element method (FEM). A FEM software package, Solvia, which takes into account fluid properties, such as temperature- and pressure- viscosity coefficient, heat conduction and specific heat, has been used to simulate the behaviour and to estimate the losses in tribological contact. This approach of simulation has been applied to two different tribological contact within the hydraulic motor: to a journal bearing contact and to a hydrostatic annular multi-recess plane thrust bearing. By using an FEM software package linked to an optimization algorithm, the losses in the tribological contact in a distributor valve were reduced significantly. The study shows that the optimized geometry of the distributor valve in the motor can successfully be improved, with regard to losses, by small changes in the geometry. Combining an FEM software package with the optimization routine offers an effective tool for designers to simulate and improve the efficiency of a hydraulic unit.
  • Fors, Vaike, 1969- (författare)
  • The Missing Link in Learning in Science Centres
  • 2006
  • Doktorsavhandling (övrigt vetenskapligt)abstract
    • Science centres have been identified as an important resource in encouraging teenagers to choose higher education in science and technology. This is of interest to society, since there seems to be a problem in getting sufficient numbers to do so. And accomplishing this is sometimes described as a fatal question for a nation’s future prosperity and development. Still, there is an international trend where teenagers fail to visit science centres. Through research, little is known about what is interesting or useful to the public, as well as how to reach those who are ‘unengaged’. Considering teenagers as exponents for what distinguishes today’s society makes their apparent unwillingness to participate in science centres interesting to study with regards to what culture, history and ideology these centres were initially produced. Hence, from this point of view, what is missing in science centres that would make them interesting for the young people of today? Many studies of learning in science centres have come to focus on visitors who visit voluntarily and how well the embedded messages in the exhibits have been acknowledged by these visitors. This study focuses instead on teenagers who are reluctant to participate in science centres, with their perspective of science centres as the point of departure, specifically what kind of social activities are formed in their encounters with science centre exhibits. This encounter is regarded as an encounter between the two different practices of the science centre and the teenagers. The applied theoretical perspective is mainly assembled from socio-cultural theories of learning. This research is a microanalytic study of five teenagers who were equipped with video cameras and asked to film a visit to the local science centre, Teknikens Hus. The films were later discussed in a focus-group interview consisting of the teenagers and the researcher. Visual ethnography provided the theoretical framework for this research design. The results showed that the teenagers want to use exhibits to have the authority of interpretations and the possibilities to contribute to the meaning of the activity. At the same time, they want to use the exhibits in a way that the activities become places for developing social identity. To negotiate the meaning of the exhibits there is a need for an openness that may be constrained by too inflexible and limiting exhibit designs. This pattern is described as two different forms of participation in the exhibits; ignoring or extending the intended meaning of the exhibits. Meaningfulness also demands a closeness created by connections between the exhibit and the user’s personal experiences. This pattern is described as two different ways in which the teenagers identified the exhibits; exhibits which they dissociated from or to which they had an ongoing relationship. Providing a space for negotiation seems crucial to inviting teenagers into opportunities of meaningful experiences, even more significant than any specific physical feature in the exhibit. The teenagers’ agenda, in which forming practices where they can express themselves and contribute to the meaning seem to be very important, appears not to be greatly enabled by science centre exhibits. In this situation they learn to not participate. Science and technology represented in this matter show a ‘ready-made’ world that they cannot change. The missing link in learning in science centres is here described as the part of the meaning making process where the teenagers get to re-negotiate the meaning of the activities in the centre and use the exhibits as tools to accomplish this.
  • Vidman, Åsa, 1960- (författare)
  • Det är så mycket som kan spela in : en studie av vägar till, genom och från sjukskrivning baserad på intervjuer med långtidssjukskrivna
  • 2007
  • Ingår i: Equal projektet SUCCESS. - Luleå : Luleå tekniska universitet.
  • Doktorsavhandling (övrigt vetenskapligt)abstract
    • Syftet med studien har varit att belysa erfarenheter och processer som är relaterade till långtidssjukskrivning, såväl till att bli sjukskriven, till att förbli sjukskriven under lång tid och till insatserna och arbetet för att återgå i arbete. Utgångspunkten har varit erfarenheter, upplevelser och uppfattningar hos personer som på grund av sjukdom eller annan funktionsnedsättning under lång tid varit utestängda från arbetsmarknaden. Studien har genomförts i Arvidsjaurs kommun där 17 långtidssjukskrivna personer intervjuats. Det var 13 kvinnor och fyra män i åldrarna 26 till 60 år varav de flesta var sjukskrivna på grund av problem med rörelseapparaten eller utmattningsdepression och liknande. Intervjuerna var öppna med karaktär av dialog, och analysen siktade till att förstå de konstruktioner de långtidssjuka skapat för att bringa mening i sin livssituation. Vid analysen framgick att intervjuerna förutom det som var direkt relaterat till studiens syfte – orsaker till sjukskrivning, om att vara sjuk under lång tid samt om stöd och hjälp för att kunna återgå i arbete – också handlade om hur sjukdom kan förstås, om könsskillnader samt om långvarig sjukdom och moral. Det övervägande intrycket är att informanterna ser sjukskrivningen som en konsekvens av många olika samspelande faktorer. Några har också varit med om olyckshändelser som endera bidragit till eller direkt orsakat sjukskrivningen. Bland annat beskriver de flera olika arbetsmiljöproblem som bakomliggande orsak. Dessa problem kan kopplas till den benägenhet att ta på sig stort ansvar som kvinnorna i studien ger uttryck för. Men tillvaron har varit kravfylld även utanför yrkesarbetet. Annat de tänker kan ha lett till den långvariga sjukskrivningen är hinder de upplevt i de olika hjälpsystemen. De flesta har också upplevt frustration och besvikelse över stödet och rehabiliteringen. Rehabiliteringsaktörerna upplevs inte beakta önskemål och initiativ från de långtidssjuka. De aktörer som beskrivs mest är hälso- och sjukvård samt Försäkringskassa. Informanterna är ambivalenta till de vanligaste insatserna – läkemedel och sjukgymnastik – från hälso- och sjukvården, och Försäkringskassan har upplevts som alltför regelstyrd och passiv. Det de efterfrågar är samtal och socialt stöd. Att vara långvarigt sjuk och därför utestängd från arbetsmarknaden ter sig olika beroende på tidigare erfarenheter, den totala livssituationen och vilka symtom man har. Med tiden har de fått kunskap som medfört att de kan undvika sådant som utlöser symtom, men kunskapen har då också fått en disciplinerande effekt. Informanterna har haft svårt att acceptera att de inte längre kan utföra sådant de tidigare gjort eller att de ska ha livslång värk. Relationerna till andra har förändrats och de sociala kontakterna har minskat. Informanterna i denna studie har problem som inte är uppenbara för omgivningen, vilket medfört att de upplever sig ifrågasatta. Överhuvudtaget har normen att man ska arbeta och försörja sig själv haft inflytande på informanternas situation – dels genom att de arbetat trots symtom av skilda slag och dels genom negativa attityder hos allmänheten. Allmänheten anser att sjuka oftast själva har förorsakat sjukdomen, och den som blivit sjuk ska också göra allt den kan för att återfå hälsa och arbetsförmåga. Många upplever misstro mot att de är sjuka och att andra tror de istället försöker hålla sig från arbete. Informanterna upplever därför misslyckande och skam. Moralen har stort inflytande på hur dessa människor beskriver sina liv – såväl hur de genom att uppfylla normerna till sist blivit sjukskrivna som de attityder de möts av genom att de är sjukskrivna. För att sjukdomen ska få legitimitet måste den också sanktioneras av läkare, så att de upplevda symtomen omvandlas till en diagnos. Diagnoser är socialt konstruerade och förändras över tid, men ger intryck av att vara konstanta. Medicinen uppfattas som en objektiv vetenskap och har också fått stort inflytande på våra vardagsliv, inte minst över sjukskrivning och rehabilitering. Detta trots att problemen många gånger i grunden är sociala. Även de rehabiliteringsaktörer som inte ingår i hälso- och sjukvården tycks ha influerats av medicinen. Rehabiliteringsaktörerna tenderar att förenkla den komplexa verkligheten för att det ska passa in i den uppsättning terapier eller åtgärder den egna myndigheten erbjuder. Arbetslivet och samhället har förändrats så det har skapats en konflikt mellan de normer som präglar arbetslivet och de traditionella förväntningarna. För kvinnorna i studien framstår situationen som extra sammansatt. De upplever att deras behov inte tillgodoses av myndigheterna. Regleringen utgår från att kvinnor och män lever jämställt, men så är inte fallet. Kvinnorna har i långt större utsträckning ansvar för hem och familj än vad män har och uppfostras till att ta hänsyn till andra. Deras egna behov prioriteras inte. Kvinnorna i studien upplever det som en extra påfrestning att inte längre kunna ta hand om barn och familj på det sätt de brukat.
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