• One transition: three journeys

      Chen-Wilson, J.; Brown, Z.; Watkins, Cheryl (2019-04)
      The focus of the research was to explore the transition period from primary to secondary education for those with Autism Spectrum Disorder, their parents’ and the professionals’ perspectives. This would facilitate future recommendations of the challenges faced and alterations to improve current procedures to make the process smoother. The analysis followed Charmaz’s (2006) constructivist grounded theory approach. Semi-structured interviews with five adolescents, seven mothers and eight professionals were conducted to ascertain their transitional experiences. The findings developed three theories of the transition period. The Mothers’ theory ‘the transitional emotional rollercoaster’ encapsulated the core category emotional response. For the mothers the sense of being prepared and involved with the transition and the choice of school were significant factors in feeling emotionally balanced. The central storyline for the adolescents’, ‘weighing up the transitional balance’, related to the emotional reaction during the transition. The adolescents wanted to be informed of their new school, with information on timeframes and support to prepare them, alongside meeting peers to increase friendships and interactions. The professionals storyline, the ‘nitty gritty’, referred to achieving a smooth transitional process by being a prominent figure in the bigger transitional process, ensuring and facilitating the needs of the adolescent, parents and professionals. The professionals desired to be equipped with an awareness of Autism Spectrum Disorder, to understand the needs of the adolescent and to have resources to manage the adolescent efficiently in the education setting. All of the populations referred to being powerless in the transition process, so future focus would benefit on empowering all entities through inclusion. Counselling Psychologists would benefit from the findings to support the different populations. Future development of working together as a collective to form a robust support network, good planning, communication and distribution of information would enable a smoother and more successful transition for all.  
    • Engineering composite particles to overcome the poor pharmaceutical performance of paracetamol

      Kaialy, Waseem; Rose, Ayuk Agbor (University of Wolverhampton, 2019-04)
      Tablets are the most common solid dosage forms because of their several advantages including the ease of administration, precise dosing, ease of manufacturing, good product stability in comparison to liquids, and tamper–proofness in comparison to capsules. Direct compression is the favoured smart choice for tablet manufacturing. The advantages of direct compression: include simplicity, reduced time and the final cost of the product due to fewer processing stages, continuous nature, and elimination of heat and moisture effects, making direct compression an appropriate process for hygroscopic and thermo–sensitive materials. However, it is unfortunate that only less than ~20% of pharmaceutical powders can be compressed into tablets by direct compression due to their inherent poor functional properties required for direct compression. The situation is particularly severe when a high dose of a poorly compactible drug such as paracetamol must be used. Paracetamol is a widely used analgesic drug. The monoclinic form is usually selected in the pharmaceutical industry and is the commercially available form because it is thermodynamically stable at room temperature and pressure. However, the monoclinic form of paracetamol is notorious for exhibiting poor tableting properties by direct compression, reduced plastic deformation during compression, commonly resulting in fragile tablets with a high propensity to cap. This work commences by providing insights into how, current and innovative processing techniques, parameters (milling time, temperature and solvents), and the combination of drugs and/or excipient impact the mechanical properties of paracetamol. The mechanical properties were investigated by applying blending, freeze drying, milling, batch cooling crystallisation, solvent evaporation and cocrystals formation, while, modifying the physicochemical structure of paracetamol crystals to improve tabletability was the rationale. The modified particles, with the desired behaviour acquired, were characterised using FT−IR, PXRD, laser diffraction, SEM, DSC, TGA, Water absorption profile, flowability, stability, content uniformity, dissolution and tabletability. Tabletabilty data demonstrated an immerse enhancement in the drug’s tensile strength upon processing using different blending energy (~8 folds) and preparation techniques (~11 folds), various freezing temperatures (~12 folds) with the polymer polyvinylpyrrolidone using various drugs such as Ibuprofen (~5 folds), aspirin and caffeine (~9 folds), Curcumin (~9 folds) chondroitin sulphate A (~11 folds) and cocrystals with the coformer 5–Nitroisophthalic acid (~12 folds). Regardless, of the co–processing techniques applied with paracetamol in the presence of other drugs and excipient, there was an improvement of the tablettabililty of paracetamol in comparison to the drug alone. In conclusion, the co–engineering of poorly compactable model drug chosen paracetamol with other drugs and excipient influenced the mechanical properties of paracetamol without changes in crystallinity and polymorphic structure.
    • God in times of adversity: A mixed-methods study investigating the relationship between religious coping and identification on the trauma appraisals and world assumptions of Muslim refugees/asylum seekers

      Hinton, Danny; Munsoor, Hannah S. (University of Wolverhampton, 2019-03-31)
      Background: The Cognitive Model of PTSD highlights the importance of pre-trauma beliefs on trauma appraisals and coping mechanisms. Worldview-based models propose that traumas shatter fundamental world assumptions, resulting in a search for meaning. Religion provides one way of offering meaning for individuals during times of distress. This research aimed to link Religious Coping Theory with cognitive and worldview-based trauma models to investigate the role of religious coping and identification on world assumptions and trauma appraisals within a community sample of Muslim refugees/asylum seekers. Method: A sequential mixed-methods design was used. Quantitative questionnaires were initially administered to eighty four participants, followed by qualitative interviews with six participants. Results: Quantitative findings indicate that religious coping and identification did not explain substantial variance in trauma symptoms, appraisals and world assumptions. Exploratory analyses revealed significant correlations between questionnaire language and trauma symptoms as well as immigration status, trauma appraisals and world assumptions. Qualitative findings, in contrast, illustrate the significant influence of Islam on the trauma appraisals, world assumptions and coping mechanisms of participants. Islam seemed to be used to evaluate and deal with trauma experience within premigration, migration and postmigration phases of the refugee/asylum seeker journey. Conclusion: These findings illustrate the need for greater research on cultural explanatory models of trauma for this population. This study provides specific insight into how participants utilise Islam in appraising and coping with their trauma experiences through the various phases of their journey. Findings are discussed in light of limitations, research and clinical implications.
    • Application of repertory grid technique to explore perceptions of expertise held by those working within the profession of conductive education

      Nicholls, Wendy; Kinnersley, Theresa (University of Wolverhampton, 2019-03-29)
      Conductive Education (CE), a psycho-pedagogic approach to working with individuals with neuromotor disorders (Sutton,2002), is practised in Statutory and Third Sector health and education provisions within the UK. This fact alone raises the need to explore the role and professional accountability of the conductor as the professional delivering this programme of education. Whilst there is a Professional Body (Professional Conductors Association) (PCA) and a requirement for validated Continuing Professional Development (CPD), there is no benchmark for expertise, or identification of the characteristics, skills and knowledge associated with it. This thesis as an exploratory study of conductors’ perceptions of expertise is the first of its kind to be undertaken with conductors working in the UK. CE, underpinned by both constructivist and constructionist methodologies (Grundtvig, 2012), fits well with Personal Construct Theory (PCT), the chosen methodology for this study. This study is undertaken in two main phases. In the first, Repertory Grid Technique (RGT), as a research method associated with PCT (Hagans, Neimeyer, Goodholm, 2000), is used to interview 20 Conductors working in the UK. Principal Component Analysis (PCA) is used to construct a quantitative analysis of individual grid findings, a process that serves to underpin subsequent thematic analysis. An iterative process of thematic analysis, influenced by Constructivist Grounded Theory (Charmaz, 2006), facilitates synthesis of the conductors’ perceptions of expertise. Expertise is perceived by the conductors to be holistic in nature and comprised of belief, personality, knowledge and skill. With reference to the pragmatist underpinnings of Positive Psychology, (Peterson & Seligman, 2004), items generated in phase one are subsequently used to construct a 92-point questionnaire. This questionnaire as a self-reflective measurement tool serves to complete the aims of this study. This exploratory study broadly fulfils its aims and addresses expressed need for greater accountability, academic justification of practice, desire for professional development and pragmatism within CE (Kozma, 1995). Weaknesses are identified, however the findings of this study serve to raise awareness of expertise, impact practice and conductor training.
    • Academic perceptions of educational technology: towards communicative rationality in the higher education institution

      Sembi, Pritpal Singh (2019-03-05)
      This thesis explores the management of change in higher education by applying a Habermasian conceptual framework to understand, explore and operationalise academic perceptions of Educational Technology. It questions the uncritical acceptance of techgerialism (i.e. managerialism through technology) in the Higher Education Institution (HEI) in a case study of academic perceptions of Educational Technology over a decade of change in one post-1992 HEI. Perceptions were drawn from participants in one school in the HEI to counter the paucity of research focusing on academics’ views of Educational Technology. Increasingly in-depth interviews were conducted over three rounds of data collection in an emergent research design based on narrative analysis. Each phase of change was interpreted as an example of formal, political and then more collegial change respectively. Academic participants expressed broadly similar negative perceptions of Educational Technology change in their HEI: suspicion, resistance, displacement and lack of confidence in leadership. These were categorised as examples of Habermasian social pathologies (anomie, alienation, disintegration and social instability) rooted in concerns about an increasingly powerful HEI systemworld. When discussing Educational Technology, participants expressed socio-cultural concerns more readily than they addressed pedagogic issues and demonstrated both critical and tolerant beliefs towards the management of change. The insider-outsider position of the researcher changed during the research which influences its development. The impact of this shifting perspective is considered reflexively throughout the thesis. The main contribution to knowledge is the augmentation of a Habermasian conceptual framework around lifeworld, systemworld and communicative rationality. Adapting his theory of social pathologies, the thesis suggests that there are corollary values, predominantly unarticulated by the participants, which may ameliorate these pathologies. The Educational Technology pathologies found in the data are ‘inverted’ to values (e.g. anomie to enculturation, alienation to solidarity) as part of the analysis. The thesis concludes by presenting a mechanism for operationalising a Habermasian public sphere, informed by these identified values, as a forum for developing intersubjective consensus and undistorted communication in the HEI.
    • The influence of lesson design on the teaching and learning process in secondary school mathematics

      Rickhuss, Michael G. (2019-03-01)
      This study involves a collaborative qualitative case study in a single secondary school with two classes of 11 and 12 year old pupils and a group of mathematics teachers. Its aim was to investigate the use of pedagogical language and terminology relating to lesson design for the teaching of mathematics. The rationale was based on a critical review of the literature arguing that pedagogical terms are often used interchangeably by teachers and that these have particular meanings when designing lessons and for the learning of mathematics. The research was viewed through the lens of a single study school with a group of teachers who had all received their initial teacher training in the same institution (the one in which I work). The research process involved the plan-do-review cycles during which the participating teacher facilitated the video recording of the lessons with the classes. Each of these lessons was followed by a conversation in the form of semi-structured interviews between the teachers and researcher supported by video recordings of classroom interactions. Following each analysis and evaluation of the lessons the participating teachers had time and space to develop lesson plans using their newly acquired understandings of the pedagogical terminology. The thesis outlines the ways in which the project developed through the cycles. The conversations between teachers and researcher were analysed using a form of analysis based on dialogic assumptions about the multi-voiced nature of talk. The findings suggest that there were changes in the ways in which the teachers communicated with each other about their ideas of lesson design. Pupil interview data suggests that children experienced an increased opportunity to explore an aspect of mathematics. Pupils also developed a deeper conceptual understanding of what is a mathematical abstract concept (the division of fractions), and that this was independent of prior attainment. Although the findings do suggest a shift in teacher use and understanding of pedagogical terminology relating to lesson design, there were issues around using small groups of pupils and a single setting for generalisation but not for transferability to other mathematical topics. The study does conclude that there is a strong link between teacher shared understandings of pedagogical terminology and lesson planning with the result being pupils from across the attainment range being able to access a mathematically difficult topic. Finally, it is acknowledged that there are multiple demands being placed upon practising teachers attempting to implement a myriad of changes together with the approaches from this research. Even given these multiple constraints their enthusiasm and learning resulted in changes to lesson design and a common shared understanding of terminology for the framing of lessons.
    • The role of Human Endogenous Retrovirus K10 (HERV-K10) in the pathogenesis of rheumatoid arthritis via molecular mimicry

      Attridge, Kesley; Trela, Malgorzata (University of Wolverhampton, 2019-03)
      Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a chronic joint disease of unknown aetiology. The autoimmune nature of RA is underlined by abundant generation of rheumatoid factor (RF) autoantibodies to IgG1 Fc, and anti-citrullinated protein antibodies (ACPA) to citrullinated autoantigens such as fibrinogen. Although RA pathogenesis has not been elucidated, genetic predisposition, environmental insults and viral pathogens are considered contributory factors. Human endogenous retrovirus K10 (HERV-K10) is one such virus as it retained the capacity to produce viral particles in RA synovium. This study set out to explore how HERV-K10 Gag matrix region could contribute to RA pathogenesis and perpetuation, with particular emphasis on its ability to mimic host autoantigens. We showed that Gag region exhibits high levels of sequence and structural homology to IgG1 Fc and it could provide a key epitope important for auto-reactivity in RA. Analysis of how HERV-K10 may evoke immune responses in RA was broadened by investigation of serological cross-reactivity of novel anti-K10 polyclonal antibody (PAbMAG) with IgG1 Fc. We showed that PAbMAG cross-reacted with linear and conformational epitopes on IgG1 Fc. In a further development, we showed a significantly elevated mean IgG response to HERV-K10 epitopes in serum samples from RA patients when compared to other arthritides. These data suggest that molecular mimicry between viral and host proteins has the potential to lead to antigen-driven high-affinity RF IgG immunological reactivity in RA. Finally, we broadened our study of mimicry in RA by the investigation of citrullinated autoantigens. Structural studies demonstrated high levels of homology between citrullinated fibrinogen, IgG1 Fc and HERV. We further explored how protein citrullination affects the cross-reactivity of autoantibody responses in RA. These experiments revealed that generation of neoepitopes through citrullination of HERV-K10 and autoantigens IgG1 Fc and fibrinogen enhanced the reactivity of RA sera to these targets. Moreover, we showed that RF autoantibodies could mediate responses to a classical ACPA target fibrinogen, only when it is citrullinated, in the absence of ACPAs. These data provide a new insight into the initiation and propagation of immunological responses in RA and how viral/host molecular mimics and citrullination could modulate serum cross-reactivity profiles in RA.
    • Emotional intelligence in binge eating disorder among the obese population

      Gnanaiah, Raj (2019-02-10)
      This research sought to investigate several differences between obese individuals with a Binge Eating Disorder (BED-O) and obese individuals without a Binge Eating Disorder (Non-BED-O). The first focus was on investigating whether these two groups of participants have differing levels of (a) the global Emotional Intelligence (EI) trait and its constituting dimensions, (b) the engagement in overeating behaviours (i.e., Emotional, External, and Restrained Eating), and (c) the engagement in different Coping styles. The research further sought to establish whether the global EI trait and its constituting dimensions predict the engagement in overeating behaviours, and whether coping styles mediate this relationship after controlling for depression scores. The sample consisted of 109 individuals who were recruited at a diabetic clinic in Wales. Sixteen participants (14.7%) were classified as BED-O and 90 participants (82.6%) as non-BED-O. Results revealed that BED-O and non-BED-O participants did not differ on global EI scores, although there were some differences on certain constructs and dimensions of EI. BED-O group displayed lower levels of the self-control construct and higher levels of the sociality construct. This group also had lower levels on the dimensions of self-esteem, emotional regulation, stress management, and higher levels of impulsivity, emotional management, and social awareness. BED-O individuals were also found to engage in more emotional, external, and restrained eating. Emotional eating was predicted by global EI trait and self-control; external eating by self- control; and restrained eating by emotionality and emotion regulation. BED-O individuals were additionally found to engage in less adaptive coping, more emotional coping, and less rational and detached coping when compared to Non-BED-O individuals. Finally, adaptive and maladaptive coping scores were found to mediate the relationship between global EI trait and emotional eating, after controlling for depression scores. The obtained findings are discussed in relation to both the literature and practice.
    • Can web indicators be used to estimate the citation impact of conference papers in engineering?

      Aduku, Kuku, J. (2019-02-08)
      Although citation counts are widely used to support research evaluation, they can only reflect academic impacts, whereas research can also be useful outside academia. There is therefore a need for alternative indicators and empirical studies to evaluate them. Whilst many previous studies have investigated alternative indicators for journal articles and books, this thesis explores the importance and suitability of four web indicators for conference papers. These are readership counts from the online reference manager Mendeley and citation counts from Google Patents, Wikipedia and Google Books. To help evaluate these indicators for conference papers, correlations with Scopus citations were evaluated for each alternative indicator and compared with corresponding correlations between alternative indicators and citation counts for journal articles. Four subject areas that value conferences were chosen for the analysis: Computer Science Applications; Computer Software Engineering; Building & Construction Engineering; and Industrial & Manufacturing Engineering. There were moderate correlations between Mendeley readership counts and Scopus citation counts for both journal articles and conference papers in Computer Science Applications and Computer Software. For conference papers in Building & Construction Engineering and Industrial & Manufacturing Engineering, the correlations between Mendeley readers and citation counts are much lower than for journal articles. Thus, in fields where conferences are important, Mendeley readership counts are reasonable impact indicators for conference papers although they are better impact indicators for journal articles. Google Patent citations had low positive correlations with citation counts for both conference papers and journal articles in Software Engineering and Computer Science Applications. There were negative correlations for both conference papers and journal articles in Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering. However, conference papers in Building and Construction Engineering attracted no Google Patent citations. This suggests that there are disciplinary differences but little overall value for Google Patent citations as impact indicators in engineering fields valuing conferences. Wikipedia citations had correlations with Scopus citations that were statistically significantly positive only in Computer Science Applications, whereas the correlations were not statistically significantly different from zero in Building & Construction Engineering, Industrial & Manufacturing Engineering and Software Engineering. Conference papers were less likely to be cited in Wikipedia than journal articles were in all fields, although the difference was minor in Software Engineering. Thus, Wikipedia citations seem to have little value in engineering fields valuing conferences. Google Books citations had positive significant correlations with Scopus-indexed citations for conference papers in all fields except Building & Construction Engineering, where the correlations were not statistically significantly different from zero. Google Books citations seemed to be most valuable impact indicators in Computer Science Applications and Software Engineering, where the correlations were moderate, than in Industrial & Manufacturing Engineering, where the correlations were low. This means that Google Book citations are valuable indicators for conference papers in engineering fields valuing conferences. Although evidence from correlation tests alone is insufficient to judge the value of alternative indicators, the results suggest that Mendeley readers and Google Books citations may be useful for both journal articles and conference papers in engineering fields that value conferences, but not Wikipedia citations or Google Patent citations.
    • The impact of implementing heritage elements in contemporary buildings in the United Arab Emirates

      Arif, Mohammed; Al Qasimi, Shaikha Khuloud Humaid (University of Wolverhampton, 2019-02)
      Due to the rapid growth and development which occurred during the last century the United Arab Emirates witnessed dramatic changes after oil discovery and the economic boom. This affected the building and construction sector that formed the urban fabric of the country. The four fundamental architectural heritage elements of the UAE are the mashrabiya, the wind tower, the courtyard and the broken entrance, these essential architectural heritage elements were efficiently implemented in traditional buildings. In the context of the contemporary; preservation challenges are experienced particularly when foreign architectural design is seen to be increasing dominating the cityscape and the architectural heritage elements are being misused neglecting their functionalities. This research aims to analyze and compare the efficiency of architectural heritage elements in the contemporary buildings and seeks to gather thorough rationale and logical interpretation in heritage elements. In order to investigate these four architectural heritage elements further, ‘case study ‘methodology has been used to inspect the performance of four local contemporary buildings and a comparison technique ( Comparative Analysis ) was conducted to better understand the outcomes of the analysis. The case study research is being preferable as a strategy due to the exploratory nature of the research and it essentially responds to research questions that seek explanation rather than experimentation. This research diverse from the usual traditional and contemporary comparison of heritage elements and focuses on comparing their reliability and functionality when addressed in contemporary buildings. It asserts that preservation must be in mind as a pre-requisite towards interpretation of heritage elements and ensures that currently more advanced technologies can be fully exploited to embrace traditional elements to achieve development requirements.
    • Banking regulation and the Basel III Accord: an examination of the risks and shortcomings posed by Basel III

      Haynes, Andrew; Chatterjee, Charles; Jacobs, Lézelle; Barnes, Matthew R. (University of Wolverhampton, 2019-01)
      In 1974 the Committee on Banking Regulations and Supervisory Practices was created and supported by the Bank for International Settlements. It was envisaged that a forum should be created so that regular interaction and co-operation could be achieved by member countries to improve financial stability and to enhance the quality of banking supervision. The aim of this research is to examine the risks and shortcomings posed by Basel III; specifically capital ratios, credit rating agencies and value-at-risk. These are based on the author’s initial research that indicated these to be the most problematic. The research also aims to provide recommendations in order to improve Basel III. Additionally, the research includes Basel I and II to illustrate the developments, problems and milestones to create a wider appreciation of this area. The title of this research is tackled extensively in Chapters 4 and 5 where the risks and shortcomings are considered in the former and recommendations are put forward in the latter. This consists of changes that are taking place or have been suggested. It is argued that there is still much work to do, but there has been significant improvement(s). The main contribution to knowledge and understanding the field in the form of originality is found throughout the research in its treatment of the subject matter and can also be viewed substantially in Chapter 5. The recommendations can be summarised below. Capital Ratios 1. A longer implementation period for liquidity coverage ratio and high quality liquid assets. 2. A longer implementation period for high quality liquid assets in a European context. 3. High quality liquid assets need re-categorisation. 4. The creation of a dedicated liquidity risk management team. Credit Rating Agencies 1. International Organisation of Securities Commissions model and more enforceability through regulators and governments. 2. Tighter regulation through the Basel regulations. 3. The creation of a public credit rating agency. 4. Uniformity on whether agencies offer opinions or advice and more accountability through the Basel regulations. Value-at-Risk 1. Research and investment to improve credit value adjustment value-at-risk. 2. The use of all three conventional approaches - Analytical Variance/Covariance, Historical, and Monte Carlo. 3. Penalising those who manipulate value-at-risk to turn products/positions from high risk to low risk.
    • Influences on conceptions, perceptions and experiences of employability

      Thompson, David W.; Cramp, Andy; Edwards, Emma (University of Wolverhampton, 2019-01)
      This research explores the responses to the employability agenda of staff working within a post-1992 Higher Education Institution (HEI). Recent policy and discourse has served to drive this issue to the top of many HEI agendas. HEIs are required to provide data about the employment rates of their students at course level (Office for Students, 2018). University marketing material emphasises these statistics as publicity and promotion to prospective students (Burke et al, 2017, p.88). Employability is, therefore, a priority for many institutions operating within a competitive, marketised higher education (HE) sector. This research contributes to existing work on employability by examining, in one institution, the lived experiences of the following key participants in the agenda: senior leaders, middle managers and academics. By adopting an Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA) approach, rich data was generated revealing the often hidden institutional conversations taking place. The findings of the research reveal a complex and varied response to employability, influenced by several factors, principally: personal experience, values and beliefs, position within the institution and the nature of the institution itself. Common experiences emerged in terms of surveillance and auditing, characteristic of an HE environment governed by increasingly standardised policies, where measuring employability has become mandatory. Participants were united in advocating a bespoke approach to employability policy development and evaluation, which takes account of and recognises various macro and micro issues, for example: the region in which the research setting was based, the nature of the institution, and the diversity of the student body. The research further indicates that institutional approaches to employability can be understood as a change process, impacting on individuals in the sector in various powerful ways: identity, loss of control, agency and increased pressure are significant issues for participants. The research demonstrates that the implementation of the employability agenda within HEIs is clearly challenging and requires an understanding of the influencing factors on perceptions and conceptions of employability, and negotiation with key staff. For academics in particular, local adaptation of policies and strategies was seen as crucial to meaningful developments in the agenda and the avoidance of being merely policy-led.
    • Reflections from practice using the UK QAA Quality Code as a framework to assist in managing and subsequently closing an international branch campus

      Devlin, Linda; Houlton, Loraine Jennifer (University of Wolverhampton, 2019-01)
      This study is based on a single longitudinal live case study of an International Branch Campus The scope of this study relates to learning lessons from the current literature in relation to International Branch Campuses [IBC]. The review of the current literature allowed me to identify risks based on experiences from my fellow practitioners, which then allowed me to mitigate my own exposure to them. This related initially to the setting up of an IBC and thereafter the delivery at an IBC. The introduction of a Quality Framework, in December 2012, by the Quality Assurance Agency [QAA] is an independent body whose role is safeguard standards and improve the quality of UK higher education wherever it is delivered around the world. The Quality Framework was a unification of standards across the whole of the UK, whereas previously there were separate systems in England, Wales and Scotland and Northern Ireland. The framework introduced two key new concepts, firstly, a ‘risk based approach’, the first phase of risk management is risk identification according the Institute of Risk Management and by reviewing existing literature I was able to identify risks from learning lessons from existing case study examples. The second concept related to quality enhancement rather than just focusing on quality assurance. This encourages a continuous monitoring of processes rather than the previous concept of annual monitoring. This was piloted in the case study example in the form of a lessons learned log which identified risks at the earliest opportunity, which then fed into the Course Journal. A lessons learned log approach allowed students to be engaged in the quality process more and quality became a positive element, looking at what went well, and even better if…mind set rather than ticking a box in relation to compliance. This research is based in a lived in case study example of an IBC which opened in March 2012, prior to, and the subsequent introduction of the Quality Framework, and illustrates the lessons learned through the first year of operation providing an insight to examples of quality enhancement in relation to pedagogical examples of delivery, content and student engagement. In June 2015 a decision was made to close the case study International Branch Campus whilst reviewing literature in relation to closing an International Branch Campus there was a gap in relation to ‘how to’ close rather than providing data on how many had closed [although this appears to be lacking in rigor], and identifying the reasons for closure. This study will illustrate how to close an International Branch Campus using the QAA Quality Framework to ensure that student enhancement opportunities are identified to support student success.
    • ‘Are they ready to fly?’ Flying faculty preparedness and professional learning: an exploratory study of transnational education staff perspectives

      Devlin, Linda; Bartram, Brendan; Whieldon, Joan Ann (University of Wolverhampton, 2019-01)
      The international mobility of higher education institutions and courses is increasing exponentially. In 2016–17, there were 707,915 students on UK degrees outside the UK with 1.6 times more students now on UK degree programmes offshore than there are international students based at universities in the UK. They are referred to as ‘glocals’ – students having global aspirations with local experiences. Transnational education takes a number of forms, one of which involves UK academic staff working as ‘flying faculty’ offshore. This requires a tutor flying to a host country, delivering the programme of study intensively and then flying out, returning to the awarding institution in the UK. This study examines the impact of these short-term teaching sojourns by staff and their ‘lived lives’ at the pre-, during- and post-delivery stages. The study investigates what training or preparation takes place and whether the challenges and opportunities of undertaking the work of flying faculty affects them personally and/or professionally. There is also consideration of their future development needs. Six staff from two universities were interviewed as part of this research using the biographical narrative interpretive method (BNIM), supported by a focus group of twelve participants originally involved as part of a project supported by the Higher Education Academy. This wide demographic provided a significant representation of the sector with flying faculty experience ranging from zero to fifteen years. Conclusions which evolved from this study are authoritative since they emanate from experts in the field, with participant samples identified as typical. Results demonstrate that preparation and on-going support for this pedagogical practice is ad hoc, informal and of uncertain design leading to significant apprehensions for staff. A lack of focus by UK higher education institutions on the personal and pedagogic needs of flying faculty subverts any Maslowian aspirational achievements. In spite of continuing rapid growth in this area of education, there is no structured training, development or support for those staff involved. The intention of this study is to provide a starting point for higher education institutions to move forward, encouraged by regulatory, fiscal and personnel incentives. The design of personal and pedagogically structured preparation, support and development for flying faculty in the future would represent a positive paradigm shift in the way that flying faculty are prepared, developed and perceived. The results of the study should be recognised as a contribution to knowledge engendering the need for change.
    • Joint venture and production sharing contracts in less developed countries – a critical legal analysis

      Haynes, Andrew; Wigwe-Chizindu, Veronica (University of Wolverhampton, 2019-01)
      The thesis principally examines the three categories of petroleum arrangements in Nigeria and gives examples of other developing countries. This study presents a systematic and in-depth analysis of both the structure and substance of some modern petroleum arrangements that have emerged in recent years and examines, the financial benefits of such associations. The thesis is divided into two parts. Part 1 deals with participation agreements, joint venture and production sharing contracts, whilst Part 2 examines mutual benefit and marginalisation of the host communities. These agreements are usually long-term, without any mechanism for renegotiations and are shrouded in secrecy and confidential clauses. A good example is the NNPC and Ashland oil contract. Due to this lacuna, it is usually the practice for renegotiation to be done through the passing of a legal notice or new law, resulting in the presence of quite a few laws in the petroleum industry and the attendant mystification. This practice would have been simple if renegotiation clauses were enshrined in the agreement, enabling changing circumstances; and confidential clauses removed, aiding transparency in the transaction. The study finds that some of the laws and the regulations are very old and clearly out of style with the times, not to mention in an industry that is forever changing and dynamic and further affected and determined by international factors. Further, the study also found that the activities of the oil and gas companies, to a great extent have not employed international best practices or remained compliant with the existing laws of the nation; resulting in oil spillages, various forms of pollution, serious health hazards, gross environmental degradations, rural agricultural destruction, distortion of social harmony and peace that exist in, and between host communities and have fuelled underdevelopment in these communities. As long as these social inequalities and injustice continue, human rights violations, gross mismanagement of natural resources, corruption in all forms and sizes exist and the activities of the participants in that sector are not addressed satisfactorily, so shall poverty, insecurity and serious threat to national existence and survival continue.
    • Embedding knowledge management strategies in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia construction industry

      Renukappa, Suresh; Alosaimi, Hanouf (University of Wolverhampton, 2019)
      The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) construction sector is an important industry and contributes approximately 20% of the GDP. It has been the most significant economic activity outside the oil sector. However, uncertainty, complexity, sustainability, climate change, and Saudi Arabia National Policy Plan 2030 are among the most important features of the current construction business environment in the KSA. As organisations try to meet these complex challenges, they need to be innovative. It is widely recognised that knowledge is an essential strategic resource for a firm to retain a sustainable competitive advantage. Although Knowledge Management (KM) has been widely practiced in the western countries, there is a little evidence in the KSA especially in the construction industry. Therefore, this research focuses on key KM strategies that the KSA construction organisations implemented en-route to organisational competitiveness. The findings are in the main, based on semi-structured interviews with 46 professionals from 30 construction organisations. The data analysis revealed that, the key initiatives implemented broadly under the umbrella of KM are: knowledge sharing initiatives, knowledge capturing initiatives and knowledge mapping initiatives. Furthermore, seven types of KM specific training strategies adopted in the KSA construction organisations. The single most important driver for managing knowledge is to improve cost savings. The key challenge for managing knowledge is capturing tacit knowledge. The KM strategies contribute to improved competitiveness on cost savings. Furthermore, a framework for managing knowledge is developed and validated. The study concludes that managing knowledge is an integrated and complex process. More effective knowledge-sharing within and across construction organisations is required. Therefore, the KSA professional institutions and construction industry should support and participate in the work of knowledge-sharing groups to address perceived risks and opportunities from new technologies and processes. The results do suggests that for effective implementation of KM strategies, there is an urgent need for KSA construction industry to develop and deploy appropriate KM related management training programmes. Leadership plays an important role in breaking down barriers in achieving KM strategies. This study has made significant contributions to knowledge since there is no previous research explored on KM programmes in the KSA construction organisations. Findings of this research are limited to the KSA construction industry context only, as such, the level of generalisability outside this context may be very limited.
    • Embedding sustainable strategies for competitive advantage in the UAE sports sector

      Renukappa, Suresh; Almenhali, Ali Abdulqader Abdulrahman (University of Wolverhampton, 2019)
      Sports industry is receiving an imperious call to reduce their negative influences associated with their events, operations and facilities on the natural environment. Hence, it has developed numerous initiatives to address pertinent issues, bearing in mind two significant initiatives; reducing their ecological footprint and using the power and popularity of sport as a means to promote and raise environmental awareness and to inspire positive social change amongst fans and spectators. Despite the growing popularity given to sports industry lags behind other forms of facilities with reference to sustainability strategies. Therefore, this study aims to investigate how the United Arab Emirates (UAE) sports sector is embedding sustainability for competitive advantage. A mixed methodology of research was adopted to collect and analyse data. Descriptive analysis was used to analyse quantitative data obtained from 124 completed online survey questionnaires. The results were further augmented by qualitative results derived from semi-structured interviews with 30 professionals from 20 sports organisations. As part of the analysis of the interviews, content analysis was employed. The unit of analysis adopted for this study is the ‘sports sector’ and the embedded unit is ‘individual employee’. The study concluded that the UAE sports sector is still in the developing stage. The implementation of initiatives related to sustainability is relatively low in the UAE sports sector organisations. Therefore, there is a need to reshape the UAE sports sector organisations existing sustainability strategy in order to gain sustainable competitive advantage. To improve the UAE sports sectors sustainability performance, decision makers have to recognise and understand the concept of sustainability. The lack of leadership skills for successful deployment of sustainability initiatives is one of the most important challenges for the UAE sports organisation. Therefore, there is an urgent need to develop and deliver a bespoke leadership training programs to address, improve and measure the effectiveness of leadership skills for driving change towards sustainability. A sustainable assessment framework was developed and evaluated. This study has made significant contributions to knowledge since there is no previous research explored on embedding sustainability strategies in the context of UAE sports sector. Findings of this research are limited to the UAE sports sector context only, as such, the level of generalisability outside this context may be very limited.
    • Oil and gas contracts: a law in context analysis using Nigeria as a case study

      Haynes, Andrew; Adebayo, Jamiu Olohundare (University of Wolverhampton, 2018-12-31)
      The legal and regulatory framework of the oil and gas industry and the contracting obligations arising thereof have evolved over time in many forms across oil producing states. Given the peculiarities of each of these oil producing states, the framework is constantly changing. The changing face of politics, climate and rapidly developing technology are changing the landscape of the industry, demanding a fundamental need for petroleum resource-endowed states to take a strategic view and choose what legal framework and contracting approaches are likely to deliver their ultimate objective: optimum production with topmost financial gains. The idea behind the exploration and exploitation of natural resources is to attract foreign direct investment (FDI) into developing states with the anticipation that such investment will put them on the centre stage of global economics and lead to an improvement in research and technology transfer that would sustain economic growth and development. However, the objective of transnational corporations is to maximise their profits. Ultimately, it is the exploration licensing contracts that states use to implement oil exploration and exploitation policies. The present research therefore seeks to look at the dynamics of the legal and regulatory framework of the oil and gas industry focussing on its everchanging contract types and nature. The research attempts to look at the causes of the imbalance in international oil and gas contracts with an eye on the observation that one of the causes of the imbalance are the investment treaties because they focus on a state’s obligations with little or no focus on obligations from transnational corporations towards the states. Some critical clauses that need to be taken into account by parties to the contract are also explored because it is argued that contractual clauses are also among the causes of imbalance in international oil and gas contracts. This research therefore addresses the causes of imbalance by looking at the problems associated with investment treaties and the long-term contractual relationship between the host states and the transnational corporations, particularly the associated risks with oil and gas contracts such as; political, economic, natural and technical risks. Essentially, the study will narrow down on the processes, technicalities, case studies and the features of four main types of oil and gas contracts namely, Production Sharing Agreement, Joint Ventures, Service Contracts and the two Concessions, (Old and New). The research also attempted to answer the following questions: what is the current structure of oil contracts and to what extent can parties’ commitments be altered to ensure the sustenance of economic stability? Which type of contract is the best for development and financial purposes? What are the causes of imbalance in the oil contract and to what extent have the principles of international environmental law been utilised at a state level and whether developing countries have been able to overcome the pressures from transnational corporations on the issue of environmental law? The research will address these questions through its five chapters.
    • How infant massage enhances pedagogical attachment in families facing challenging circumstances

      Rouse, Elizabeth (2018-12-05)
      This doctoral research project aimed to contribute a needed in-depth understanding of the effects of infant massage for families around the times they faced stressful life events. It was developed in response to Bennett, Underdown and Barlow’s 2013 meta-analysis and critique of studies examining the influence of infant massage on young babies’ health outcomes, and their recommendation that future studies explored the effects for groups they described as ‘higher risk’. The research was underpinned by five key concepts identified as potentially important themes, namely touch, intersubjectivity, attachment, resilience and infant massage. Located in the constructivist paradigm, and using a praxeological case study methodology, this qualitative study used methods including video, storyboarding, interviews and questionnaires with families and practitioners. The central ethical issues were around the assent, consent and voices of three infant-carer dyads who participated in the filming, and addressed through an innovative matrix of approaches to informed consent, and co-interpretation of the data with families. Infant massage was found to facilitate a unique multi-modal form of joint communication which I termed ‘visceral interaction’. This connectivity was set in a series of delicately balanced and nested environments (Bronfenbrenner, 1979) and was found to enhance carers’ understanding of infants’ cues, respect for them as individuals, and to support intersubjective and attachment relationships. Infant massage can offer families a special environment focusing on the infant-carer connection, and offering important respite from the challenges that may disrupt its development. However, the environments surrounding the families, and timing of the programme were found to be critical; the massage context needs to support infant and carer feelings of containment (Bion, 1962) and regulation (Gerhardt, 2015) as they adjust to a new life phase. Drawing on these findings, this study recommends that future research focuses on practices which may support families’ increased participation in this vital service, and that there is a move to widen the offer of compassionate, respectful and individualised services to all families at this critical early stage.
    • Understanding the intersection of culture, religion and gender on diversity management: a qualitative study of Nigerian hotels

      Ukachukwu, Amarachukwu (2018-12-01)
      Recent attention has been drawn to human resource management within the Nigerian context, with increased interest in the improvement of organisational management practices to enable Nigeria to compete in an increasingly globalised economy (Fajana et al., 2011). Despite this, however, there is a distinct paucity of academic literature addressing the effects of culture and religion on gender equality in management within Nigerian organisations (Tiemo and Arubayi, 2012). Nigeria does not have an indigenous tradition of human resource management, and as a consequence, many of its management practices are imported alongside foreign investment and amalgamated with local practices (Fajana et al., 2011). Nigeria’s patriarchal culture and demographic context have significant implications on diversity management, and this reflects on the composition of the workforce (Tiemo and Arubayi, 2012). Qualitative data collected in Northern, Southern and Eastern regions of Nigeria through in-depth interviews were coded and analysed. The study found that hotels in Nigeria are still grappling with the problem of gender inequality with females’ career development suffering greatly under the burden of a patriarchal culture. Females are also made to take job responsibilities that reflect their positions in the society and households. Secondly, the intersecting factors of gender, religion and culture put severe pressures on women, which tend to have a negative impact on work-life balance. Thirdly, family responsibility and expectations deter females from seeking promotion to the higher level of hotel administration. Many females who attempt to ‘rebel’ against the standing cultural order find themselves in marriage crises. Finally, gender diversity management is not promoted in Nigerian hotels. The study makes contributions to theory and practice. It finds common ground for the application of hegemonic masculinity framework and intersectionality perspective in gender and management inquiries. The study recommends radical holistic change is required regarding policy, cultural, programmatic, attitudinal and social actions.