Now showing items 1-20 of 6529

    • Exploring the efficacy and safety of cannabis in the management of fibromyalgia

      Sagdeo, Amol; Askari, Ayman; Ball, Patrick; Morrissey, Hana (Innovare Academic Sciences, 2022-01-15)
      Fibromyalgia is a chronic health condition characterized by chronic pain fatigue, sleep disturbances and many other symptoms affecting a patient’s quality of life. Patients with fibromyalgia often visit rheumatology outpatients with a long list of symptoms and often receive multiple medications. Many have seen multiple specialists and have done a lot of reading about alternative modalities of treatment. The limited effectiveness of conventional therapy coupled with widespread media attention raises the question of cannabis use. This review examines the literature on cannabinoid use in fibromyalgia against the context of the international variation in legal frameworks, the available products and the outcomes reported. A detailed review was performed using the EMBASE and PUBMED databases. It was concluded that despite the interest in the use of cannabinoids in the management of fibromyalgia, there is insufficient evidence to prescribe the currently available licensed medicines or to recommend the complementary health products available for legal purchase. There is a need for more global clinical randomised trials to accurately determine medicinal cannabis short and long-term long efficacy and safety for its acute and chronic use.
    • England local community pharmacists opinions on independent prescribing training

      Kauser, Samaira; Morrissey, Hana; Ball, Patrick (SPER Publications and Solutions Pvt. Ltd., 2022-01-01)
      The National Health Service has recognized an increasing need for pharmacists to upskill as an advanced clinical practitioners to practice as part of the wider multi-disciplinary team in primary care but outside of the community pharmacy. This explored community pharmacists’ opinions on independent prescribing training that can equip them to meet the workforce needs. Two activities have undertaken an audit of the independent prescribing pharmacists’ current employability in Wolverhampton and community pharmacists opinion online survey. Only 21 out of 57 surgeries (37%) in Wolverhampton employed an IP. With only 7 out of 57 (12%) surgeries employing an IP on an FTE basis, the remaining employed IP mainly part-time. There were 70 IPs employed a total of 50.2 FTE. The most selected areas as highly confident were public health knowledge 19.6%, followed by pharmacology and routine biochemistry equally at 17.65%. There were 23.5% who reported not being confident in interpreting highly specialized diagnostics, followed by anatomy at 18%. The most selected as the first option of course of future studies was 1-2 days continuous professional development (42.55%), where Masters, professional doctorate and doctor od philosophy were selected as least favorable options (53%, 63%, 72% respectively) indicating that the majority prefer a maximum of 6 month PT studies. This study confirmed the need for rethinking the current postgraduate pharmacy independent prescribing education, the pharmacists’ independent prescribers’ integration into primary care, and the need to redistribute resources and responsibilities‎.
    • Impacts of depression subcase and case on all-cause mortality in older people: The findings from the multi-centre community-based cohort study in China

      Chen, R; Zhou, W; Ma, Y; Wan, Y; Qin, X; Rodney, A; Ni, J; Thomas, E; Gao, J; Spira, AP; et al. (Wiley, 2021-08-23)
      Objectives: It is unclear whether and to what extent depression subcases and cases in older age were associated with all-cause mortality. Little is known about gender differences in the associations. We assess these in older Chinese. Methods: We examined a random sample of 6124 participants aged ≥60 years across five provinces in China. They were interviewed using a standard method of the GMS-AGECAT to diagnose depression subcase and case and record sociodemographic and disease risk factors at baseline, and to follow up their vital status. We employed Cox regression models to determine all-cause mortality in relation to depression subcases and cases, with adjustment for important variables, including social support and co-morbidities. Results: Over the 10-year follow-up, 928 deaths occurred. Compared to those without depression at baseline, participants with depression subcase (n = 196) and case (n = 264) had increased risk of mortality; adjusted hazard ratios (HRs) were 1.46 (95% CI 1.07–2.00) and 1.45 (1.10–1.91). The adjusted HRs in men were 1.15 (0.72–1.81) and 1.85 (1.22–2.81), and in women 1.87 (1.22–2.87) and 1.22 (0.83–1.77) respectively. In participants aged ≥65 years, the adjusted HRs were 1.12 (0.68–1.84) and 1.99 (1.28–3.10) in men, and 2.06 (1.32–2.24) and 1.41 (0.94–2.10) in women. Increased HR in depression subcases was higher in women than man (ratio of HRs was 1.84, p = 0.034). Conclusions: Older people with depression subcase could have increased all-cause mortality to a similar extent to those with depression case. More attention should be paid to subcases of depression in women to tackle gender inequalities and improve survival.
    • Impact of air pollution exposure on the risk of Alzheimer's disease in China: A community-based cohort study

      He, F; Tang, J; Zhang, T; Lin, J; Li, F; Gu, X; Chen, A; Nevill, Alan M.; Chen, Ruoling; Zhejiang Provincial Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Hangzhou, Zhejiang, China. (Elsevier, 2021-11-03)
      Alzheimer's disease (AD) is the most common type of dementia. Impact of air pollution (AP) on the risk of AD is unclear. It is unknown which air pollutants are independently associated with AD and whether fish consumption mitigated the association. We carried out a community-based cohort of 6115 participants aged ≥60 years in China to examine the association of PM2.5, PM10, CO, NO2, SO2 and O3 exposure with AD, and differences in the association between people with low and high consumption of fish. The participants were randomly recruited from six counties in Zhejiang province for health survey to document socio-demographic and disease risk factors in 2014, and were followed up to diagnose AD in 2019. A total of 986 cohort members were diagnosed with AD. Based on the daily mean air pollutants monitored in 2013–2015 in the counties, participants were divided into low, middle and high AP exposure groups for subsequent analysis. The multiple adjusted odds ratio (OR) of AD in participants living with the middle and high levels of PM2.5 exposure versus the low exposure were 1.50 (95% CI 0.90–2.50) and 3.92 (2.09–7.37). The increased ORs were also with PM10 (1.74, 0.65–4.64; 3.00, 1.22–7.41) and CO (2.86, 1.32–6.20; 1.19, 0.45–3.18), but not with NO2 (0.63, 0.17–2.27; 0.95, 0.28–3.19), SO2 (0.44, 0.19–1.001; 1.21, 0.56–2.62), and O3 (0.38, 0.20–0.74; 0.50, 0.21–1.21). There were no significant interaction effects of AP with fish consumption on AD. However, participants with low consumption of fish appeared to have higher ORs in PM2.5 exposure (1.80, 1.39–2.33; 5.18, 3.93–6.82) than those high consumption (1.38, 0.78–2.47; 2.89, 1.50–5.59). Our findings of PM2.5, PM10 and CO exposure significantly increased the risk of AD and the potential mitigating effect of fish consumption on the association provide evidence for developing effective strategies for AD reduction and air pollution control.
    • Association of the labor migration of parents with nonsuicidal self-injury and suicidality among their offspring in China

      Ma, Y; Guo, H; Guo, S; Jiao, T; Zhao, C; Ammerman, BA; Gazimbi, MM; Yu, Y; Chen, R; Wang, HHX; et al. (American Medical Association, 2021-11-09)
      Importance: The labor migration of parents in China often leaves children behind, which may be adversely associated with children's health. However, few studies have assessed the association of parental migration with nonsuicidal self-injury (NSSI) or with suicidality among their offspring. Objective: To examine the associations of parental labor migration with NSSI and with suicidality as well as potential differential associations by sex among offspring left behind. Design, Setting, and Participants: This nationwide cross-sectional study was conducted from February to October 2015 among individuals aged 11 to 20 years from 45 public middle and high schools across 5 provinces of China. Data analysis was performed from November 1, 2020, to March 1, 2021. Exposures: Parental labor migration, including parental migration status (yes vs no), migration pattern (father, mother, or both), and the child's age at the initial parent-child separation. Main Outcomes and Measures: Less frequent (1-4 episodes) NSSI, more frequent (≥5 episodes) NSSI, suicidal ideation, and suicide attempt in the past year were measured using validated questionnaires. Multinomial or binomial logistic regression analyses were used separately to estimate adjusted odds ratios (aORs) and 95% CIs of the associations between parental migration and NSSI, suicidal ideation, or suicide attempt. Potential covariates (demographic, family-level, and psychological characteristics) were adjusted for in 3 sequential models. Results: A total of 15312 participants (7904 male [51.6%] and 7408 female [48.4%]) aged 11 to 20 years (mean [SD] age, 15.1 [1.8] years) were included. Of those participants, 5963 (23.3%) experienced parental migration. The 12-month prevalence of less frequent NSSI was 17.2% (2635 of 15312), the 12-month prevalence of more frequent NSSI was 11.6% (1783 of 15312), the 12-month prevalence of suicidal ideation was 15.2% (2335 of 15312), and the 12-month prevalence of suicide attempt was 3.5% (535 of 15312). Parental migration was associated with less frequent NSSI (adjusted odds ratio [aOR], 1.13; 95% CI, 1.03-1.24); no significant association of parental migration with more frequent NSSI (aOR, 1.01; 95% CI, 0.90-1.13), suicidal ideation (aOR, 1.00; 95% CI, 0.90-1.10), or suicide attempt (aOR, 1.09; 95% CI, 0.90-1.33) was identified. Compared with children whose parents did not migrate, the aOR for less frequent NSSI for participants whose father migrated was 1.18 (95% CI, 1.06-1.31), and the aOR for less frequent NSSI for participants having both parents migrate was 1.12 (95% CI, 1.01-1.28). Compared with children whose parents did not migrate, participants who experienced initial separation from 1 or both parents at preschool age had an aOR for less frequent NSSI of 1.16 (95% CI, 1.03-1.31). No sex disparities were found in these associations except for participants who experienced initial separation from 1 or both migrant parents at preschool age, for which the aOR for more frequent NSSI was higher among male (aOR, 1.27; 95% CI, 1.04-1.55) than female (aOR, 0.96; 95% CI, 0.77-1.19) participants. Conclusions and Relevance: This cross-sectional study found that parental migration, mainly of the father or of both parents, or an initial separation of children at preschool age from 1 or both parents who migrated was associated with higher odds of experiencing 1 to 4 NSSI episodes in 1 year among offspring. Overall, the associations of parental migration with NSSI and suicidality were similar between male and female participants..
    • "Children are more than just a statistic. Education is more than government outlines": Primary teachers' perspectives on the standards agenda in England

      Williams-Brown, Zeta; Jopling, Michael (British Education Studies Association, 2022-01-05)
      This paper focuses on qualitative findings from a study that investigated primary teachers’ perspectives on the standards agenda in England. Q-methodology was used to investigate the complexity of their perspectives. The study’s Q-methodology findings are published in Education 3-13 (Williams-Brown and Jopling, 2021). This paper focuses on qualitative responses from this study that were completed after the Q-methodology card sort. It focuses on teachers’ overall perspectives on the standards agenda and statements from the card sort that were placed by five participants or more in the extreme columns of the distribution grid. Findings from the study evidence that teachers were not opposed to standards and accountability, but they voiced a variety of concerns that did not focus solely on SATs. These include concerns about perceptions of achievement, experiences of assessment and measures taken to hold teachers and schools accountable for their actions. Teachers did also emphasise concerns with SATs and discussed the need for objectives to be inclusive and consider the needs of children with SEND. The paper concludes by questioning whether this is the time to reconsider standards agenda objectives.
    • Abiraterone acetate and prednisolone with or without enzalutamide for high-risk non-metastatic prostate cancer: a meta-analysis of primary results from two randomised controlled phase 3 trials of the STAMPEDE platform protocol

      Attard, Gerhardt; Murphy, Laura; Clarke, Noel W; Cross, William; Jones, Robert J; Parker, Christopher C; Gillessen, Silke; Cook, Adrian; Brawley, Chris; Amos, Claire L; et al. (Elsevier, 2021-12-23)
      Background Men with high-risk non-metastatic prostate cancer are treated with androgen-deprivation therapy (ADT) for 3 years, often combined with radiotherapy. We analysed new data from two randomised controlled phase 3 trials done in a multiarm, multistage platform protocol to assess the efficacy of adding abiraterone and prednisolone alone or with enzalutamide to ADT in this patient population. Methods These open-label, phase 3 trials were done at 113 sites in the UK and Switzerland. Eligible patients (no age restrictions) had high-risk (defined as node positive or, if node negative, having at least two of the following: tumour stage T3 or T4, Gleason sum score of 8–10, and prostate-specific antigen [PSA] concentration ≥40 ng/mL) or relapsing with high-risk features (≤12 months of total ADT with an interval of ≥12 months without treatment and PSA concentration ≥4 ng/mL with a doubling time of <6 months, or a PSA concentration ≥20 ng/mL, or nodal relapse) non-metastatic prostate cancer, and a WHO performance status of 0–2. Local radiotherapy (as per local guidelines, 74 Gy in 37 fractions to the prostate and seminal vesicles or the equivalent using hypofractionated schedules) was mandated for node negative and encouraged for node positive disease. In both trials, patients were randomly assigned (1:1), by use of a computerised algorithm, to ADT alone (control group), which could include surgery and luteinising-hormone-releasing hormone agonists and antagonists, or with oral abiraterone acetate (1000 mg daily) and oral prednisolone (5 mg daily; combination-therapy group). In the second trial with no overlapping controls, the combination-therapy group also received enzalutamide (160 mg daily orally). ADT was given for 3 years and combination therapy for 2 years, except if local radiotherapy was omitted when treatment could be delivered until progression. In this primary analysis, we used meta-analysis methods to pool events from both trials. The primary endpoint of this meta-analysis was metastasis-free survival. Secondary endpoints were overall survival, prostate cancer-specific survival, biochemical failure-free survival, progression-free survival, and toxicity and adverse events. For 90% power and a one-sided type 1 error rate set to 1·25% to detect a target hazard ratio for improvement in metastasis-free survival of 0·75, approximately 315 metastasis-free survival events in the control groups was required. Efficacy was assessed in the intention-to-treat population and safety according to the treatment started within randomised allocation. STAMPEDE is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT00268476, and with the ISRCTN registry, ISRCTN78818544. Findings Between Nov 15, 2011, and March 31, 2016, 1974 patients were randomly assigned to treatment. The first trial allocated 455 to the control group and 459 to combination therapy, and the second trial, which included enzalutamide, allocated 533 to the control group and 527 to combination therapy. Median age across all groups was 68 years (IQR 63–73) and median PSA 34 ng/ml (14·7–47); 774 (39%) of 1974 patients were node positive, and 1684 (85%) were planned to receive radiotherapy. With median follow-up of 72 months (60–84), there were 180 metastasis-free survival events in the combination-therapy groups and 306 in the control groups. Metastasis-free survival was significantly longer in the combination-therapy groups (median not reached, IQR not evaluable [NE]–NE) than in the control groups (not reached, 97–NE; hazard ratio [HR] 0·53, 95% CI 0·44–0·64, p<0·0001). 6-year metastasis-free survival was 82% (95% CI 79–85) in the combination-therapy group and 69% (66–72) in the control group. There was no evidence of a difference in metatasis-free survival when enzalutamide and abiraterone acetate were administered concurrently compared with abiraterone acetate alone (interaction HR 1·02, 0·70–1·50, p=0·91) and no evidence of between-trial heterogeneity (I2 p=0·90). Overall survival (median not reached [IQR NE–NE] in the combination-therapy groups vs not reached [103–NE] in the control groups; HR 0·60, 95% CI 0·48–0·73, p<0·0001), prostate cancer-specific survival (not reached [NE–NE] vs not reached [NE–NE]; 0·49, 0·37–0·65, p<0·0001), biochemical failure-free-survival (not reached [NE–NE] vs 86 months [83–NE]; 0·39, 0·33–0·47, p<0·0001), and progression-free-survival (not reached [NE–NE] vs not reached [103–NE]; 0·44, 0·36–0·54, p<0·0001) were also significantly longer in the combination-therapy groups than in the control groups. Adverse events grade 3 or higher during the first 24 months were, respectively, reported in 169 (37%) of 451 patients and 130 (29%) of 455 patients in the combination-therapy and control groups of the abiraterone trial, respectively, and 298 (58%) of 513 patients and 172 (32%) of 533 patients of the combination-therapy and control groups of the abiraterone and enzalutamide trial, respectively. The two most common events more frequent in the combination-therapy groups were hypertension (abiraterone trial: 23 (5%) in the combination-therapy group and six (1%) in control group; abiraterone and enzalutamide trial: 73 (14%) and eight (2%), respectively) and alanine transaminitis (abiraterone trial: 25 (6%) in the combination-therapy group and one (<1%) in control group; abiraterone and enzalutamide trial: 69 (13%) and four (1%), respectively). Seven grade 5 adverse events were reported: none in the control groups, three in the abiraterone acetate and prednisolone group (one event each of rectal adenocarcinoma, pulmonary haemorrhage, and a respiratory disorder), and four in the abiraterone acetate and prednisolone with enzalutamide group (two events each of septic shock and sudden death). Interpretation Among men with high-risk non-metastatic prostate cancer, combination therapy is associated with significantly higher rates of metastasis-free survival compared with ADT alone. Abiraterone acetate with prednisolone should be considered a new standard treatment for this population.
    • Challenges negating virtual construction project team performance in the Middle East

      Sagar, Sukhwant Kaur; Arif, Mohammed; Oladinrin, Olugbenga Timo; Rana, Muhammad Qasim (Emerald, 2022-12-31)
      Purpose Over the last couple of decades, many organisations are increasingly adopting virtual team concepts, and construction companies in the Middle East are no exception. Members of a virtual team are geographically scattered and represent diverse cultures. Thus, challenging issues emerge more frequently than in a traditional team. There are challenges associated with space and time as well as high client’s demand. Therefore, this study aims to identify and probe the causes of the challenges in virtual project teams in the construction industry of the Middle East. Design/methodology/approach A list of challenges was derived through a comprehensive review of relevant literature. Questionnaire survey was conducted with professionals who are involved in construction virtual project teams. Further, the factor analysis technique was used to analyse the survey responses. Findings Results show that the challenges in virtual team arrangement in the Middle East construction industry can be grouped into seven categories, namely: organisational culture, conflict within the team, characteristics of the team members, trust within the team members diversity of the team, communication and training, and cohesion in the team. Understanding of these factors will drive the needed platform to support effective virtual project teams in the Middle East. Originality/value This study raises the prospect that organisations may establish an environment for team members to achieve higher levels of virtual cooperation by concentrating on these potentially crucial factors. This, in turn, will encourage further innovation and performance within construction organisations.
    • Experimental and simulation study of the effect of cut-out defect in carbon fibres twill weave composite

      Bari, Klaudio; Sen, Sukru; Gulia, Kiran (Springer, 2020-05-03)
      The automated fibre placement (AFP) is an effective manufacturing process that produces a large complex structure with high quality at low secondary waste. Although, the AFP is highly accurate and reproducible and very common in the aerospace application, break and cut-out defect in the plies are inevitable. In this study, we have investigated 4 different types of geometrical cut-out defect that have an equal area (38.4 mm2) that cut from identical locations in the specimen plies. The effect of triangular, rectangular, square and circular cut-out defect has been investigated and compared to a virgin material that has no flaw or cut-out defect in the plies. It has been observed and hence reported that the circle induced flaw has caused 73% reduction in the impact strength due its 360° distortion of carrying stress. The failure mode of the circular cut-out defect specimens was proven to be matrix crack due to miscarriage of the stresses in the fibre, while a pull-out fibres failure mode has been observed in the virgin specimen. The experimental work has been validated using FEA analysis that identically simulate the boundary condition of both bending and impact test.
    • Stressful life events and deliberate self-harm: Exploring the specificity of stressful life events and emotion regulation facets

      Boyda, David; Mcfeeters, Danielle; Hitchens, Danielle; Institute of Human Sciences, Faculty of Education, Health and Wellbeing (University of Wolverhampton, 2021)
      Objective: The current study aimed to examine if specific emotion regulation facets mediated the relationship between different stressful life events and deliberate self-harm. It examined both the cumulative and specific effects of stressful life events. Methods: A quantitative correlational survey method was adopted using several questionnaires to explore the relationship between stressful life events, emotion dysregulation and self-harm engagement. The sample included 164 individuals who were seeking support from a secondary care NHS service. Analysis was conducted using Mplus 6 and involved two mediation models. Results: The results demonstrated that different types of stressful life events were significantly associated with engagement in deliberate self-harm. This varied depending on the stressful life event, in which some stressful life events decreased self-harm engagement. In isolation the number of stressful life events was not significantly associated with self-harm, indicating that there was no cumulative effect of stressful life events on engagement in deliberate self-harm. However, experiencing more stressful life events was significantly associated with deliberate self-harm through specific emotion regulation facets. Conclusions: Results indicated that stressful life events are more likely to contribute to the engagement in deliberate self-harm when they coexist. The current findings contribute to a deeper understanding of the mediating processes between stressful life events and deliberate self-harm. They specifically demonstrate that particular pathways to deliberate self-harm are not determined by the presence of stressful life events, but the ways in which emotion regulation ability is refined and developed during their presence, which subsequently effects the individuals need to use deliberate self-harm as a means of managing their distress.
    • Expressions of psychological stress on Twitter: detection and characterisation

      Thelwall, Mike; Gopalakrishna Pillai, Reshmi; School of Mathematics and Computer Science, Faculty of Science and Engineering (University of Wolverhampton, 2021-11)
      Long-term psychological stress is a significant predictive factor for individual mental health and short-term stress is a useful indicator of an immediate problem. Traditional psychology studies have relied on surveys to understand reasons for stress in general and in specific contexts. The popularity and ubiquity of social media make it a potential data source for identifying and characterising aspects of stress. Previous studies of stress in social media have focused on users responding to stressful personal life events. Prior social media research has not explored expressions of stress in other important domains, however, including travel and politics. This thesis detects and analyses expressions of psychological stress in social media. So far, TensiStrength is the only existing lexicon for stress and relaxation scores in social media. Using a word-vector based word sense disambiguation method, the TensiStrength lexicon was modified to include the stress scores of the different senses of the same word. On a dataset of 1000 tweets containing ambiguous stress-related words, the accuracy of the modified TensiStrength increased by 4.3%. This thesis also finds and reports characteristics of a multiple-domain stress dataset of 12000 tweets, 3000 each for airlines, personal events, UK politics, and London traffic. A two-step method for identifying stressors in tweets was implemented. The first step used LDA topic modelling and k-means clustering to find a set of types of stressors (e.g., delay, accident). Second, three word-vector based methods - maximum-word similarity, context-vector similarity, and cluster-vector similarity - were used to detect the stressors in each tweet. The cluster vector similarity method was found to identify the stressors in tweets in all four domains better than machine learning classifiers, based on the performance metrics of accuracy, precision, recall, and f-measure. Swearing and sarcasm were also analysed in high-stress and no-stress datasets from the four domains using a Convolutional Neural Network and Multilayer Perceptron, respectively. The presence of swearing and sarcasm was higher in the high-stress tweets compared to no-stress tweets in all the domains. The stressors in each domain with higher percentages of swearing or sarcasm were identified. Furthermore, the distribution of the temporal classes (past, present, future, and atemporal) in high-stress tweets was found using an ensemble classifier. The distribution depended on the domain and the stressors. This study contributes a modified and improved lexicon for the identification of stress scores in social media texts. The two-step method to identify stressors follows a general framework that can be used for domains other than those which were studied. The presence of swearing, sarcasm, and the temporal classes of high-stress tweets belonging to different domains are found and compared to the findings from traditional psychology, for the first time. The algorithms and knowledge may be useful for travel, political, and personal life systems that need to identify stressful events in order to take appropriate action.
    • A comparison of German and British therapists’ explicit and implicit reasoning about white and non-white clients – a vignette study

      Galbraith, Niall; Chen-Wilson, Josephine; Bisconti, Maria; Landmann, Sophie; Department of Psychology, Faculty of Education, Health and Wellbeing (University of Wolverhampton, 2021-09)
      Objectives – This doctoral study explored the impact of a client’s ethnic background on the perception and chosen therapeutic approach of UK and German therapists. This study sought to identify how a therapist’s held explicit and implicit biases influence their practise with clients of various ethnic backgrounds. Methodology – A sample of 51 therapists from the UK and Germany was recruited to take part in this online study. Participants were randomly allocated to either ‘Condition Caucasian’ or ‘Condition Diverse’ and first presented with three vignettes accompanied either by a photo of a person with European ethnic background or a person with African or South-Asian ethnic background. The participants then answered nine questions about their potential approach with each presented client, which were designed to identify explicit bias. In the second step, all completed a modified race implicit association test (IAT) that further quantified the therapists’ implicit and explicit bias towards individuals of various ethnicities. Results – Multivariate Analysis of the vignette data found no statistically significant differences between the two conditions; thus, no explicit bias was found within this sample. A subsequent comparison between the two nationalities was impaired due to uneven sample sizes, yet differences between the scores became visible. The analysis of the IAT data found slight implicit pro-white bias in the complete sample, as well as indicators for a priming effect in participants assigned to ‘Condition Caucasian’. The IAT study replicated previous research findings of implicit pro-white bias and the inconsistency between the tested implicit and the self-reported explicit bias within a therapist sample. Discussion – While explicit bias could not be identified within this sample, implicit pro-white bias was uncovered. It was concluded that therapists are as fallible to implicit bias as other healthcare workers, though they may be better at masking its conscious impact. Steps towards a less biased practise were outlined. Follow-up research will have to determine whether all findings, and in particular the cross-cultural comparison, can be replicated with a larger sample.
    • Listening to the voices of boys in dance

      Matheson, David; Keane, Helen; Institute of Education, Faculty of Education, Health and Wellbeing (University of Wolverhampton, 2021-06)
      This thesis examines how child-centred research illuminates complex and intertwined social dynamics for boys in dance. Male involvement in dance has been compared to effeminacy and homosexuality (Owen and Riley, 2020b), which has marginalised male participation. In doing so, dance has been distanced from orthodox masculinity, which is framed in heterosexuality, homophobia, and anti-femininity identities. The pressure to perform within such boundaries has impacted upon gendered and sexual identities. Nonetheless, an attitudinal revolution under the guise of inclusive masculinity theory (Anderson, 2009) maintains more liberal masculine identities are emerging. My research questions therefore ask: (i) what evidence of inclusive masculinity is present in primary aged boys? (ii) how do primary age boys perform masculinities in dance? (iii) What do boys aspire for within lessons to encounter meaningful dance through PE? These questions were answered through data from two case study schools in the West Midlands region of England. The study built on the ‘write, draw, show and tell’ (WDST) method (Noonan et al., 2016) and added the innovative use of ‘emojis’ to create the write, draw, show, tell and emoji’ (WDSTE) approach. Over a four month duration, observations, focus group interviews using WDSTE, and photo-elicitation, with 18 Year Five and Six (ages 9-11) boys were deployed. The boys’ visual and verbal data was thematically analysed (Braun and Clarke, 2006) giving insight into three themes, including the freestyling of masculinity, embodying inclusive masculinity and inquiry, and embodied learning in dance. Boys resisted hegemonic ideals, instead displaying increasing normalcy of homosocial tactility with other boys (Anderson and McCormack, 2014) as a means to cope in dance. The data demonstrated desired ownership over the content and increased social connectedness through collaborative activities. My thesis illustrated that contemporary masculinity is continuing to evolve and boys are not trapped by the stigmatisation of their interest in dance or physical closeness with other boys. I argue with, and for, boys, who saw a need to vocalise for more equitable practices in dance, where they aspired to be supported meaningfully to become competent. This thesis draws attention to the interest that boys hold towards dance and the need for educational purposes of dance to be mindfully considered to support holistic growth in primary school dance.
    • The impact of natural and synthetic zeolite when used in cementitious based systems

      Williams, Craig; Hodgkiss, Conner; School of Architecture and Built Environment, Faculty of Science and Engineering (University of Wolverhampton, 2021-11)
      The production of Portland cement, the most commonly used binding material in the construction and maintenance industry, is one of the principle carbon dioxide emission contributors. Indeed, up to 85% of the cement quantity produced is discharged into the atmosphere. As a result, efforts are being made to introduce new and advanced alternative construction materials to combat this adversity. Despite the recent introduction of new advanced materials such as polymer rubbers and alternative mineral sands, the overall percentage emission of carbon dioxide has not decreased. Improvement of cement mortar characteristics and the reduction of carbon emissions is of keen interest to researchers and industry experts in the field of construction materials engineering. Interestingly in the literature, zeolite minerals have the ability to absorb carbon dioxide and thus aid in reducing the concentration levels present in the atmosphere. Zeolites are very stable solids that are resistant to environmental conditions that challenge many other materials. They possess high melting points and can exhibit resistance to temperatures exceeding 1000°C. They can also resist high pressure, do not dissolve in water or inorganic solvents and their unreactive nature means that they exhibit no harmful environmental impacts. I believe that this makes them an ideal investigative compound to consider in terms of being adopted as a cement replacement in construction material. Zeolites have been used as a supplementary cementitious material in the construction industry and both natural and synthetic zeolites have shown interesting properties as mineral additions, notably increased compressive strength, resistance to sulphate attack and favourable leaching properties. However, there has been minimal research carried out on synthetic zeolites in this area in contrast to the abundance of natural zeolite study and notably research considering using zeolites as replacements for rather than in addition to cement. In this research programme, synthetic and natural zeolites were used to partially replace cement in mortar samples. Synthetic zeolites 3A, 4A and 13X were used to replace 5, 10 and 15% of the total cement mass in the mortar specimens with chabazite, mordenite, natrolite and philipsite chosen as a selection of natural zeolites. Ordinary Portland cement was used with a water-cement ratio of 0.40 and a sand-cement ratio of 1:3. All specimens were water-cured at 20°C before a suite of laboratory tests were performed, comprising of; specific gravity, ultrasonic pulse velocity, compressive strength testing, scanning electron microscopy, x-ray diffraction and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy. All test results were determined at ages of two, seven, twenty-eight and seventy curing days. The research study demonstrated that mortar samples produced with zeolite incorporation as a replacement of cement demonstrated comparatively good engineering and chemical compositional properties when compared to control mixes. Encouraging data was recorded namely for the utilisation of mordenite and philipsite zeolite types, in that the zeolites demonstrated increased compressive strength in comparison to the control mortar as well as having decreased density and increased compactness. Notably, mordenite and philipsite can be utilised as a way of decreasing the cement content needed in a given mortar mix, indeed replacement of cement at 10 and 15% both produced increased compressive strength recordings when compared to both the control and synthetic zeolite incorporated samples.
    • ‘A matter of persistence’: Lessons learnt by the British Expeditionary Force and its operational development following The Battle of Festubert, 15-25 May 1915

      Badsey, Stephen; Woods, Michael; Faculty of Social Sciences (University of Wolverhampton, 2021-11)
      This thesis assesses the learning process of the British Expeditionary Force by its participation in The Battle of Festubert 15 – 25 May 1915.The study of this battle offers an important insight in the development of the BEF during this period, despite it being neglected in much of the historiography concerning the British Army in the First World War. It focuses on how well the BEF’s First Army, commanded by General Haig, was organised and equipped upon entering the battle. It draws upon First Army’s experience of two previous battles, one in March 1915 and another only six days before commencing offensive action again, to determine what knowledge had been gained and used in developing their battle tactics. Its central argument is that there was very much to learn from this previous action and great effort was made to modify the tactics at Festubert, particularly from the obvious failure on 9 May. The thesis relies on primary source material created by the units at the time, such as army and divisional records and battalion war diaries. It also examines some secondary literature and personal memoirs of key political figures and those that took part, to examine the effect of both coalition and national strategy and the pressure that placed on the shoulders of the BEF’s commander Sir John French as Festubert was taking place. This thesis argues that this pressure interfered with the ability of General Haig to fully realise the lessons of combat gained at Festubert, as he was pushed soon afterwards to launch in an even larger attack in the Battle of Loos (25 September – 8 October 1915), using tactics that contradicted what had just been learnt at Festubert. It will argue that some of the contribution to the learning process by key figures, such as Sir William Robertson and Major General Richard Haking has been missed in the historiography. This thesis asserts that despite not achieving any type of significant breakthrough at Festubert, the experience served the BEF well in that it supported the French Army as it fought in the Second Battle of Artois and it trialled new methods which would be further developed as the war progressed. Unfortunately for the BEF, by the time of the next Anglo-French offensive, the Battle of the Somme, German countermeasures had largely negated some of the lessons of Festubert and this has played a part its lack of examination in modern studies of the BEF’s operational development.
    • Paths in education: how students make qualification choices at Level 3 and what influences these choices

      Lavender, Peter; Lewis, Zoe Helen; Institute of Education, Faculty of Education, Health and Wellbeing (University of Wolverhampton, 2020-12)
      This study is an investigation into how young people make choices between the ages of sixteen to eighteen about the qualifications they study at Level 3 and the impact these choices have on further progression. Often, the reasons for their choices tend to be obvious and straightforward and are career driven. However, what about those students who may not know about progression routes or how to make informed choices? Given the potential impact on students’ lives, it seems vital that we understand how students make their choices, and whether any aspects of the current decision-making process could be improved. There is increasing interest in the provision of information, advice and guidance focussing on how students are making choices regarding careers and progression to higher education in the United Kingdom (Diamond et al., 2014). However, to date, the majority of research into qualification choice has been focused instead on choice into Higher Education contexts or choices made about GCSE options, thus leaving a gap in literature surrounding Further Education. Since it is now compulsory for students to be in education to the age of eighteen, it is crucial to ask why research is still invisible on student choice into further education, whereas student choice into higher education has the lion’s share of the research attention (Elliot, 2016). This thesis explored the factors that influence the choices made by students who have decided to study on a Level 3 qualification, and to understand how students may go about making these choices. It has been argued that many students are poorly prepared when it comes to making the choices about the qualifications they study post-16 (Leatherwood, 2015). This study has found this is still true for young people today. A mixed methods approach was used which combined a mixture of surveys and interviews. All the research took place in a single sixth form college. At the heart of the study were the stories that students disclosed of what influenced their own qualification choices. Seventeen semi-structured interviews and fifty questionnaires were used. Five main influences and themes emerged from the research as being central to qualification choice. These were peer influence; career aspirations; parental or family influence; advice from careers advisors; media influences. In addition, an emerging theme was the potential role played by schools in shaping qualification choice. These factors played a significant role in the choice of qualifications for students, to the point where it was effectively a ‘non-choice’ for some of them. One implication from the study is that young people need both good impartial information but they also need good advice and guidance in how to use this information, rather than anything offered being seen as a ‘token gesture’. This research shows that students are making key decisions about future qualifications without seeking professional guidance. Instead, decisions are more likely to be based on hearsay from friends or social media. These decisions can be partially explained by examining the kind of career advice students receive in school: only eighteen per cent of students surveyed said that they received enough information to ‘make an informed decision’ (Palmer, 2016).
    • Deep learning based semantic textual similarity for applications in translation technology

      Mitkov, Ruslan; Ranasinghe, Tharindu; Research Institute of Information and Language Processing (University of Wolverhampton, 2021)
      Semantic Textual Similarity (STS) measures the equivalence of meanings between two textual segments. It is a fundamental task for many natural language processing applications. In this study, we focus on employing STS in the context of translation technology. We start by developing models to estimate STS. We propose a new unsupervised vector aggregation-based STS method which relies on contextual word embeddings. We also propose a novel Siamese neural network based on efficient recurrent neural network units. We empirically evaluate various unsupervised and supervised STS methods, including these newly proposed methods in three different English STS datasets, two non- English datasets and a bio-medical STS dataset to list the best supervised and unsupervised STS methods. We then embed these STS methods in translation technology applications. Firstly we experiment with Translation Memory (TM) systems. We propose a novel TM matching and retrieval method based on STS methods that outperform current TM systems. We then utilise the developed STS architectures in translation Quality Estimation (QE). We show that the proposed methods are simple but outperform complex QE architectures and improve the state-of-theart results. The implementations of these methods have been released as open source.
    • Neuromuscular training in pre-professional ballet dancers: A feasibility randomised controlled trial

      Kolokythas, Nico; Metsios, George S.; Galloway, Shaun; Allen, Nick; Wyon, Matthew (J.Michael Ryan Publishing Inc., 2022-12-31)
      Introduction: It is well documented that there is high prevalence of injuries in preprofessional and professional ballet dancers. Current evidence from high in quality and quantity research on injury prevention in sport, indicates that interventions can reduce injury risks by 30 to 50%. Injury prevention research in dance, is limited. The aim of this study was to assess the feasibility (adherence, fidelity, and practicality) of a randomised controlled trial for the utilisation of neuromuscular training in pre-professional ballet dancers. Methods: A convenience sample of 22 pre-professional ballet dancers were randomised into the intervention and the control group. The intervention group took part in a neuromuscular based training workout, five times per week before the ballet class, for ten weeks. The intervention was an adaptation of the FIFA 11+, an injury prevention intervention and is called 11+ Dance. The intervention consisted of low intensity bodyweight exercises, lasted 20-30 minutes and was performed daily. Results: Intervention adherence was 38±8%, with higher participation at the beginning of the study. Attendance for the pre- and post testing was low 45% and 36% for the intervention and control group, respectively, mainly due to injury. There were no adverse effects reported, however, the participants reported delayed onset muscle soreness at the beginning of the intervention, indicating that there may be a potential training effect. Fear of muscle hypertrophy and fatigue were also reported as reasons for attrition. The repeated measures ANOVA revealed statistically non-significant differences for the CMJ F(1,9)= 0.36, p = .564, 𝜂𝜂𝑝𝑝 2 = .04, RSI F(1, 7)= 0.02, p= .885, 𝜂𝜂𝑝𝑝 2= 0.003, and IMTP F(1, 12)= 0.002, p= 0.967, 𝜂𝜂𝑝𝑝 2= .000. Conclusion: The results of the study, together with the feedback from the participants suggest that some protocol modifications are necessary, for the feasibility of a randomised controlled trial in a pre-professional setting. The current trial has produced valuable information for the intervention frequency and load prescription.
    • Country indicators moderating the relationship between phubbing and psychological distress: A study in 20 countries

      Błachnio, Agata; Przepiórka, Aneta; Gorbaniuk, Oleg; McNeill, Monika; Bendayan, Rebecca; Durak, Mithat; Senol-Durak, Emre; Ben-Ezra, Menachem; Benvenuti, Martina; Angeluci, Alan; et al. (Frontiers Media, 2021-12-24)
      Problematic mobile phone use can be related to negative mental states. Some studies indicate that behavioural dependency is related to variables associated with the country of origin. The aim of our study was to investigate if country indicators moderated the relationship between phubbing and psychological distress. Our sample consisted of 7,315 individuals from 20 countries, who completed the Phubbing Scale and the Kessler Psychological Distress Scale (K6). The analyses also included country indicators: the Gender Gap Index (GGI), the Human Development Index (HDI), the Social Progress Index (SPI), Hofstede’s dimensions of culture, and the World Happiness Index (WHI). Our results showed that psychological distress was related to at least one dimension of phubbing (i.e., to communication disturbance or phone obsession) in all countries, which means this relationship is culturally universal. The results of the study demonstrate the importance of testing measurement invariance to determine what type of analysis and what type of conclusion are valid in a given study or comparison. Moreover, the increasing or decreasing correlation between phubbing and distress is related to some culture-level indices.
    • 'You really do become invisible': Examining older adults' right to the city in the United Kingdom

      Menezes, Deborah; Woolrych, Ryan; Sixsmith, Judith; Makita, Meiko; Smith, Harry; Fisher, Jenny; Garcia-Ferrari, Soledad; Lawthom, Rebecca; Henderson, James; Murray, Michael (Cambridge University Press, 2021-12-16)
      A global ageing population presents opportunities and challenges to designing urban environments that support ageing in place. The World Health Organization's Global Age-Friendly Cities movement has identified the need to develop communities that optimise health, participation and security in order to enhance quality of life as people age. Ensuring that age-friendly urban environments create the conditions for active ageing requires cities and communities to support older adults' rights to access and move around the city ('appropriation') and for them to be actively involved in the transformation ('making and remaking') of the city. These opportunities raise important questions: What are older adults' everyday experiences in exercising their rights to the city? What are the challenges and opportunities in supporting a rights to the city approach? How can the delivery of age-friendly cities support rights to the city for older adults? This paper aims to respond to these questions by examining the lived experiences of older adults across three cities and nine neighbourhoods in the United Kingdom. Drawing on 104 semi-structured interviews with older adults between the ages of 51 and 94, the discussion centres on the themes of: right to use urban space; respect and visibility; and the right to participate in planning and decision-making. These themes are illustrated as areas in which older adults' rights to access and shape urban environments need to be addressed, along with recommendations for age-friendly cities that support a rights-based approach.