Matching Items (2,356)
- All Subjects: Education
- All Subjects: Violin and piano music
- All Subjects: Sustainability
The purpose of this study is to examine how community-based youth theater ensembles create conditions for youth to practice cultural agency and to develop a sense of themselves as valuable resources in a broader community development process. The researcher employed a qualitative methodology, using a critical and interpretive case study approach which enabled her to document and analyze three community-based youth theaters in New York City: Find Your Light, a playwriting/performance program for youth associated with the NYC shelter system; viBeStages, an all-girl youth ensemble (part of viBe Theater Experience or "viBe"); and Ifetayo Youth Ensemble (IYE), a multi-age ensemble for youth of African descent living in Flatbush and its surrounding neighborhoods (part of Ifetayo Cultural Arts Academy). All three programs are youth-based performing arts ensembles with a mission-driven focus on positive youth development and community building; they are long-term engagements, active in their communities for at least three years; and they are all part of arts organizations that value artistry as their principle means of impacting communities. All of the young artists involved in these programs participated in a sustained process of creating original performance pieces based on stories relevant to their lives and/or the lives of their communities. This dissertation examines how, through their playmaking processes, they began to identify, critique and experiment with commonly held beliefs about human agency and interaction, to activate and embellish the symbolic systems and repertoires that make up their communities, and to practice new ways of coming together. Through their use of artistic practices, the youth developed a sense of themselves as viable shapers of their communities and, in varying degrees, also used other aspects of culture (values, rituals, traditions, aspirations and the arts) to make meaning, contribute, and shape their cultural locations, offering new forms, symbols, structural models and imaginings.
The past and future of biofuels a case study of the United States using the institutional analysis and development framework
In recent years, the world has debated the idea of biofuels as a solution to energy security, energy independence, and global climate change. However, as the biofuels movement has unfolded, crucial issues emerged regarding biofuels efficacy and efficiency. The deployment of biofuels of marginal benefit has raised questions about how countries like the USA may have found themselves so invested in a potentially failing technology. In order to better understand and evaluate these issues, this study utilizes the Ostrom Institutional Analysis and Development (IAD) framework to better evaluate these issues and analyze interacting institutions that shape US biofuel policy. The IAD framework is a model that enables one to study, conceptualize, compare, and make connections across decision arenas that would otherwise be distinct from each other. By analyzing the interactions of relevant institutions, one can see how different dynamic interests interacted to shape biofuel policy in the USA today. Conclusions from this analysis include: the IAD framework is ideal for analyzing the political and economic case for biofuels. The five action arenas identified in this thesis are sufficient to understand corn bioethanol policy. A compelling case for supporting bioethanol is not made. An international agreement to reduce GHG emissions could change the landscape for biofuels. Finally, there is little prospect for biofuels playing a significant role in the near term without greater alignment among the action arenas.
A Six Sigma-based approach to leadership in energy and environmental design for existing buildings: operations and maintenance
With increasing interest in sustainability and green building, organizations are implementing programs such as Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design for Existing Buildings: Operations and Maintenance (LEED-EB) in order to focus corporate sustainability goals on the operations of a facility and the practices of the building occupants. Green building programs help reduce the impact of a facility and bring about several environmental benefits including but not limited to energy conservation, water conservation and material conservation. In addition to various environmental benefits, green building programs can help companies become more efficient. The problem is that organizations are not always successful in their pursuits to achieve sustainability goals. It frequently take years to implement a program, and in many cases the goals for sustainability never come to fruition, when in the mean time resources are wasted, money is spent needlessly and opportunities are lost forever. This thesis addresses how the Six Sigma methodologies used by so many to implement change in their organizations could be applied to the LEED-EB program to help companies achieve sustainability results. A qualitative analysis of the Six Sigma methodologies was performed to determine if and how a LEED-EB program might utilize such methods. The two programs were found to be compatible and several areas for improvements to implementing a LEED-EB program were identified.
Environmental change and natural hazards represent a challenge for sustainable development. By disrupting livelihoods and causing billions of dollars in damages, disasters can undo many decades of development. Development, on the other hand, can actually increase vulnerability to disasters by depleting environmental resources and marginalizing the poorest. Big disasters and big cities get the most attention from the media and academia. The vulnerabilities and capabilities of small cities have not been explored adequately in academic research, and while some cities in developed countries have begun to initiate mitigation and adaptation responses to environmental change, most cities in developing countries have not. In this thesis I explore the vulnerability to flooding of the US-Mexico border by using the cities of Nogales, Arizona, USA and Nogales, Sonora, Mexico as a case study. I ask the following questions: What is the spatial distribution of vulnerability, and what is the role of the border in increasing or decreasing vulnerability? What kind of coordination should occur among local institutions to address flooding in the cities? I use a Geographic Information System to analyze the spatial distribution of flood events and the socio-economic characteristics of both cities. The result is an index that estimates flood vulnerability using a set of indicators that are comparable between cities on both sides of the border. I interviewed planners and local government officials to validate the vulnerability model and to assess collaboration efforts between the cities. This research contributes to our understanding of vulnerability and sustainability in two ways: (1) it provides a framework for assessing and comparing vulnerabilities at the city level between nations, overcoming issues of data incompatibility, and (2) it highlights the institutional arrangements of border cities and how they affect vulnerability.
Development and analysis of new 3D tactile materials for the enhancement of STEM education for the blind and visually impaired
Blind and visually impaired individuals have historically demonstrated a low participation in the fields of science, engineering, mathematics, and technology (STEM). This low participation is reflected in both their education and career choices. Despite the establishment of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), blind and visually impaired (BVI) students continue to academically fall below the level of their sighted peers in the areas of science and math. Although this deficit is created by many factors, this study focuses on the lack of adequate accessible image based materials. Traditional methods for creating accessible image materials for the vision impaired have included detailed verbal descriptions accompanying an image or conversion into a simplified tactile graphic. It is very common that no substitute materials will be provided to students within STEM courses because they are image rich disciplines and often include a large number images, diagrams and charts. Additionally, images that are translated into text or simplified into basic line drawings are frequently inadequate because they rely on the interpretations of resource personnel who do not have expertise in STEM. Within this study, a method to create a new type of tactile 3D image was developed using High Density Polyethylene (HDPE) and Computer Numeric Control (CNC) milling. These tactile image boards preserve high levels of detail when compared to the original print image. To determine the discernibility and effectiveness of tactile images, these customizable boards were tested in various
university classrooms as well as in participation studies which included BVI and sighted students. Results from these studies indicate that tactile images are discernable and were found to improve performance in lab exercises as much as 60% for those with visual impairment. Incorporating tactile HDPE 3D images into a classroom setting was shown to increase the interest, participation and performance of BVI students suggesting that this type of 3D tactile image should be incorporated into STEM classes to increase the participation of these students and improve the level of training they receive in science and math.
Listen to the poet" [electronic resource]: what schools can learn from a diverse spoken word poetry group in the urban southwest
This dissertation shares findings from a yearlong qualitative case study of Young Voices Rise (YVR), a diverse spoken word poetry group in the urban Southwest. The study examined the group's characteristics and practices, adolescent members' views of their writing and themselves as writers, and changes members attributed to their experiences in YVR. Data sources included interviews with six adolescent poets and two adult teaching artists, observations of writing workshops and poetry slams, collection of group announcements through social media, and collection of poems. Sociocultural theory guided the study's design, and grounded theory was used to analyze data. This study found that YVR is a community of practice that offers multiple possibilities for engagement and fosters a safe space for storytelling. The adolescent participants have distinct writing practices and a strong sense of writing self; furthermore, they believe YVR has changed them and their writing. This study has several implications for secondary English language arts. Specifically, it recommends that teachers build safe spaces for storytelling, offer spoken word poetry as an option for exploring various topics and purposes, attend to writers' practices and preferences, encourage authentic participation and identity exploration, and support spoken word poetry school-wide.
Latina/o language minorities with learning disabilities: examining the interplay between in- and out-of-school literacies
There are many educational issues connected to the exponential growth of the Latina/o population in the U.S. One such issue is Latina/os’ educational outcomes in the area of literacy. Despite the increased attention to subpopulations of students (e.g., English language learners, students with disabilities) there is little attention given to students that do not fit neatly into one subcategory, which positions Latina/o language minorities (LMs) with learning disabilities (LDs) in a liminal space where their educational services are fragmented into either being a student with LD or a LM student. Unfortunately, labels that are meant to afford students resources often result in fragmenting students’ educational experiences. This becomes evident when attempting to locate research on students who have ethnic, linguistic, and ability differences. Rarely are their educational needs as Latina/o LMs with LD met fluidly. Understanding the intersections of ethnicity, language, and ability differences in situated literacy practice is imperative to creating the deep, nuanced understanding of how Latina/o LMs with LD might become proficient in the use of critical twenty-first century tools such as new literacies. In this study I used cultural historical activity theory in combination with New Literacy Studies (Cope & Kalantzis, 2009; Gee, 1996) and intersectionality (McCall, 2014) to examine how Latina/o LMs with LD’s participated in literacies across in- and out-of-school contexts with the following research questions: In what ways does participation in literacy change for Latina/o LMs with LD as they move between in- and out-of-school? What situated identities do LMs with LD enact and resist while participating in literacy across in- and out-of-school contexts?
This document outlines the formation and development of Worth the Weight, or WTW, a platform that seeks to sustain the Breaking community in Phoenix, Arizona and connect the generations by bringing them together in a newly and never before seen event in Breaking, an all weight class and division competition. In the last five to ten years there has been a noticeable decline in the local Breaking community, in part due to the introduction of new dance categories, economic and social changes, the cross over of academia and traditional studios in Phoenix; all combining to create a lack of longevity in veterans of the culture to pass on the tools of the trade to the next generation.
WTW is an event that occurs monthly for three consecutive months followed by a month off, totaling nine events and three seasons per calendar year. At each event dancers go head to head in battle in a single elimination style bracket, where they will add a loss or win to their overall season record. The goals of WTW are self-empowerment as well as ownership and investment in the community by those involved through participation in both the event and the planning process; all built on a foundation of trust within the Breaking community. This researcher has thirty years of direct involvement in the Breaking culture with twenty-two of those years as a practitioner in Phoenix, Arizona and co-founder of Furious Styles Crew, Arizona’s longest running Breaking crew. The development of WTW was drawn from this experience along with interviews and observations of Breaking communities worldwide. WTW intends to provide a reliable and consistent outlet during a time of instant gratification, allowing a space for self-discovery and the development of tools to be applied beyond movement. It is hoped that the format of WTW will be a model that can be adapted by other Breaking communities worldwide.
A micro-ethnographic study of creative behavior of Title 1 urban art students: how do context, collaboration and content play a role in the development of creativity?
Through the disciplines of art education, anthropology and psychology the researcher examined research-based traits and characteristics of the creative process among a second year Title 1 urban high school art class. Within the theoretical framework of social justice, this micro-ethnographic study explored exactly what teaching and learning to be creative implies and proposes a potential resolution for art teachers learning how to enhance teaching children how to think creatively. The research proposition is that student creativity occurs as a function of a series of interrelated factors including a nurturing classroom context, strong teacher-student dialogue, strategic questioning, purposeful incorporation of visual culture, and manipulation of content in favor of student interests within the culturally situated context of the art classroom. Navigating teacher-student relationships at moments of creative origination produced results indicating that the art teacher alone is the single most influential factor for enhancing creative outcomes in a classroom. Through incorporation of a variety of collaborative activities and comparative analysis of dissimilar content-driven projects generated evidence that artistic skills and creativity do not necessarily go hand-in-hand. The study finds that the artworks produced evidence based nuances of the creative traits of originality, fluency, flexibility, and elaboration in which profoundly varied in character depending on the content and the context. The study concludes that creativity cannot be strictly taught or learned, but rather that it can be enhanced through teacher nurturing and manipulation of content to encompass a socially intelligent uptake in the culture of art-making. Broader implications are suggested focusing on the significance of creative education and the impact it can have for educational systems, schools and undergraduate programs in art education. The researcher proposes an art education curriculum model that fosters both creative thinking and the unique learning needs of Title 1 urban students. The curriculum suggests the art teacher begin initial instruction by teaching students about the traits, characteristics and obstructions of creativity prior to teaching artistic skills sets to serve as a foundation of creative awareness from the start.
Disparities exist among minorities in educational a ttainment. The gap widens when examining access to higher education and persi stence rates among minority males as compared to their white counterparts and minorit y females. The purpose of this action research study was to explore the impact of a recip rocal mentoring model between faculty and minority male students in an effort to examine the effects on student persistence and the students' academic experience. The researcher attempted to examine mentoring relationships, the process of reciprocal mentoring, and the effects on persistence and the students' academic experience f or the purpose of learning about one another's perspectives. This study investigated min ority male persistence within Chandler-Gilbert Community College (CGCC). Persiste nce was defined as a student who enrolled during the fall 2013 academic semester and continued at the same institution or transferred to another two-year or four-year instit ution working on degree completion. The author used a mixed methods design and used Cri tical Race Theory (CRT) as the theoretical framework by which to examine issues pe rtaining to minority male student perspectives and experiences. The results yielded e ight assertions related to minority male retention and persistence.