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    Edible wild plant species used by different linguistic groups of Kohistan Upper Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), Pakistan

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    Background The mountainous territory of Kohistan shelters diverse food plant species and is considered one of the important hotspots of local plant knowledge. In the era of globalization and food commodification, wild food plants (WFPs) play an important role in supporting local food systems and related local knowledge is one of the important pillars of food sustainability across the region. Since the area is populated by different cultural groups and each culture has retained particular knowledge on the local plant species, therefore, to make a cross-culturally comparison, the study was planned to record and compare the local plants knowledge among three linguistic groups viz Gujjar, Kohistani and Shina in order to not only protect the local knowledge but to determine the food cultural adaptations among these groups looking through the lens of their food ethnobotanies. Methods Field ethnobotanical survey was carried out in 2020–2021 to gather the data on wild food plants. We used semi-structured interviews. Use reports were counted, and the results were visualized through Venn diagrams. Results In total, 64 plant species belonging to 45 botanical families were documented. Among these Ajuga integrifolia, Barbarea verna, Clematis grata, Impatiens edgeworthii, Ranunculus laetus (vegetables), Parrotiopsis jacquemontiana (fruit), Indigofera tinctoria (flower), Juniperus excelsa, Primula elliptica, P. macrophylla (flavoring agent), Leontopodium himalayanum (Chewing gum), and Juniperus excelsa (snuff) were reported for the first time. The highest use reports (≥ 90) were recorded for Mentha longifolia, Amaranthus hybridus, Quercus semecarpifolia, Solanum miniatum, Oxalis corniculata, Ficus palmata, and Urtica dioica. Maximum number of wild food plant species (WFPs) were reported by Kohistani, followed by Shinaki and Gujjari linguistic groups. The percentage overlap of traditional knowledge on WFPs was highest among Kohistani and Shinaki (56.0%), followed by Shinaki and Gujjars (17.0%), and Kohistani and Gujjars (15.0%). Kohistani and Shinaki groups exhibited maximum homogeneity in traditional knowledge. However, Gujjars had more knowledge on WFPs compared to Kohistani and Shinaki. In addition, some dairy products viz. Bhorus, Bagora, Bak, Cholam, Kacha, Gurloo and Poyeen were reported also reported that are consumed orally and used in traditional cuisines. Conclusions The study indicates that Kohistan is one of the important spots of biocultural diversity and could be recognized as biocultural refugia. WFPs have been an integral part of the traditional food systems among the studied groups, particularly the Gujjars have reported more distinct plant uses which could be referred to their distinctive ecological experiences among others. However, social change is one of the challenges that might lead to the erosion of local plant knowledge. Moreover, intercultural negotiations among the studied groups are also a matter of concern which could homogenize the local knowledge among them. Therefore, we suggest solid policy measures to protect the local knowledge and celebrate diversity across this mountain territory

    Arduino based 74-series integrated circuits testing system at gate level

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    The goal of this research article is to build and implement a low-cost, user-friendly 74-series logic integrated circuits (ICs) tester that is independent of a computer. Depending on the truth table of the gates and the IC configuration, the logic IC tester will be able to test the operation of the 74 series logic gates (AND, OR, NOR, NAND, XOR) of those ICs. It is feasible to test a range of logic ICs with higher pin widths thanks to the proposed system’s usage of an Arduino Mega platform module as a microcontroller, which provides the ability to connect 54 programmed logic inputs or outputs. The versatility offered by this design and the use of a personal computer allow for the reprograming and updating of the logic IC functional tester. Any 74-series ICs testing outcome will be shown on liquid crystal display (LCD) at the gate level. The logic IC functional tester was successfully constructed and operates flawlessly

    The Intersections between Food and Cultural Landscape: Insights from Three Mountain Case Studies

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    In the last decades, scholars from different disciplines have used the foodscape as a concept and an analytical framework to explore the intersection between landscape, people and food culture. Adopting a comparative case-study analysis, this article aims to show how a foodscape can be used as a lens to investigate cultural landscapes, specifically in mountain areas affected by fast structural socio-economic and ecological changes, identifying key tangible and intangible elements, the underpinning relationship and values, as well as the factors underlying their evolution and transformation. In this way, the article indicates this concept as a key tool for landscape management and conservation. We discuss three different and complementary approaches to the analysis of cultural landscapes, namely, from food products to landscape analysis (Albania), from food production practices to landscape analysis (Kenya) and from food-related rural architecture to landscape analysis (Italy). Overall, the research highlights how implementing a foodscape lens among the different levels of landscape analysis could contribute to the assessment, protection and promotion of local food-related resources. In so doing, it opens new research aimed at defining the limits of this heuristic instrument, where its most promising aspects of the foodscape have been explored in the article

    Analysis on IMF Loan Conditions with more Detrimental Impact on the Economy: A Case Study of Nigeria

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    Past studies have shown that nations that borrow money from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) have greater rates of poverty, unemployment, and inflation than countries that do not borrow from the IMF. This is despite the fact that the IMF claims that fostering economic development is one of its objectives. The IMF loans conditions that are shown to have the most detrimental impact on economies are the subject of this study, which focused, specifically on Nigeria. In order to obtain data for this research, primary data sources such as official documents, newspapers, journals, and other similar sources were utilized, and Neoliberal theory was employed as the theoretical foundation for the study. Our research showed that the IMF loan conditions of currency devaluation and subsidy removal negatively impacted not just Nigeria's economy but also the nation's overall standard of living. As a result, it was recommended that the government should make an effort to diversify the economy, modify its relations with international financial organizations like the IMF and the World Bank, and give the populace access to the necessary resources to improve their standard of living

    Natural therapies utilisation in Ranya, Kurdistan Region, Iraq

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    Natural products are an important way to treating the disease in the whole earth. It has been estimated that more than 70% of the earth population relies on natural products. Unfortunately, the knowledge is passed from generation to generation verbally without documentation. The study aims to document the natural therapies used by the Kurdish people in the treatment and management of various ailments. Non-purposive sampling was employed in the study with an in-depth interview guide. One hundred and thirteen respondents were interviewed from the period of September 2021-June 2022. Qualitatively, excel 2016 was used to calculate descriptive statistics of socio-demographic information of the respondents and quantitatively the data were subjected to the following indices: Use Value (UV) and Relative Frequency Citation (RFC). Fourty two medicinal plants were documented and used for the management of various ailments: diabetes, fever, immune booster, aphrodisiac, stomach pain, headache, fungal, and bacterial infections. Leaves were reported as the most used part of the plant (25.5 %), oral as the most form of administration (80.5%). Plants with 0.05 are considered with have the highest UV and 0.8 for RFC. Ranya has a varied range of medicinal plants, according to the current study, and the use of medicinal plants and plant-based therapies is still common in the area. The study aimed to comprehensively document the traditional medicinal plants utilised by the people of Ranya. It will serve as an avenue for further development of herbal formulations and modern medicines in the region

    The effects of epistemic curiosity-based instruction in enhancing EFL students` reading and listening skills at a tertiary level

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    Epistemic curiosity is seeking novel information in numerous fields incessantly. An increasing number of studies have been carried out to evaluate the role of epistemic curiosity-based instruction in enhancing students’ linguistic abilities at different stages of education. However, it was monitored that measuring the effects of epistemic curiosity-based instruction on reading and listening enhancement in Iraq context at a tertiary level was a gap in the literature which encouraged the researcher to initiate and finalize the study to fill this gap. In this regard, the present study was carried out to investigate the effects of epistemic curiosity-based instruction on students’ reading and listening competence within a span of 14 weeks. 60 freshman Foundation English course students who joined lessons actively at TISHK International University in Erbil, Iraq were chosen by simple random sampling method in 2022-2023 Academic Year. Control group students followed an orthodox training cycle, while the students in experimental group followed an epistemic curiosity driven instruction. Collected data by integrating quantitative and qualitative instruments revealed that epistemic curiosity-based instruction enhanced students’ reading and listening marks significantly. This study's implications can provide a basis for education stakeholders who are considering introducing an epistemic curiosity-based curriculum in educational institutions

    Smoking as A Risk Factor for Periodontitis in Erbil City

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    Background and Objective: Nicotine in cigarettes can harm the immune system and lead to constriction of blood vessels, plus the blood vessels in the tissues encircling the tooth. Constriction of blood vessels can form an encouraging environment for the growth of microorganisms that cause periodontal disease. The purpose of this study is to verify the risk of smoking on the periodontal health status. Material and Method: a comparative cross-sectional study carried out on 400 patients including 200 smokers and 200 nonsmokers of age range (18-64) years. Chi-square test was used to compare data recorded (p-value <0.05). Results: Most of the smokers were male. Most of the participants didn’t use interdental aid. There was a significant relation between age, gender, smoking habit including frequency and duration, oral hygiene habit, and dental care visit with periodontitis (P-value <0.05). Conclusion: The current study demonstrates smoking as the major etiological factor associated with periodontal tissue destruction

    The Effects of Revised Bloom’s Taxonomy Enriched Instruction on EFL Learners’ Writing Performance in an Academic Writing Course

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    Bloom’s Taxonomy has received considerable attention on a global scale since it was first introduced by Benjamin Bloom and his associates in 1956. Since then, it has served as the basis for test design and curriculum development in many institutions globally. Bloom’s Taxonomy was revised in 2001 by Lorin W. Anderson and his associates to refine terms in learning objectives. Six classifications have been set to define learning outcomes in a graded way. To this aim, current study was carried out to measure the effects of Revised Bloom Taxonomy enriched instruction on students’ scores in an Academic Writing course. 40 students,17 female and 23 male ones, were chosen through systematic sampling method. The students were studying at TISHK International University Language Preparatory School located in Erbil, Iraq in 2021-2022 Academic Year. Control group students received traditional writing instruction, whereas experimental group students were exposed to Revised Bloom’s Taxonomy integrated instruction. The study lasted 12 weeks, and each student was required to write 6 essays according to a pre-defined plan. Data were collected via a pre-test, a post-test exam, an interview and a survey, in line with a mixed method research design. The findings of the study revealed that Revised Bloom Taxonomy based writing instruction increased students’ writing scores substantially, improved their motivation and changed their attitudes towards learning the rules of creative writing in a graded format, whereas the gains were not noticeable in the control group. The findings of the study can have some implications for stakeholders in education who are exploring ways to integrate taxonomy into their Academic Writing course curriculum

    The Power of Body Language in Education: A Study of Teachers’ Perceptions

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    The purpose of this study is to shed light on the significance of body language in education and gather instructor opinions on the matter. Throughout the study, we looked at the background of body language, touched on its significance in education, and highlighted the cultural differences in it. The most typical body language errors were listed in order to provide advice to teachers, and in this situation, efficient body language approaches were suggested. A Google Form questionnaire was used to gather the opinions of 30 instructors at Tishk University, a private university in Iraq, on this topic, and teachers were subsequently subjected to in-person interviews. The analysis of the questionnaire and the interview revealed that the teachers’ judgments of body language were significant and that it improved the standard of instruction. It’s surprising to note that none of the 30 teachers who took part in the study expressed a negative view of body language; on the contrary, it was found that they were eager to learn more about it

    Evaluating the potential of geopolymer concrete as a sustainable alternative for thin white-topping pavement

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    Introduction: The construction industry uses a large quantity of natural materials in the production of concrete. Although attempts to incorporate green materials in concrete began years ago, not every building uses such materials today, and roadways, particularly, still rely on unsustainable materials. Methods: Therefore, this study used alternative materials, including fly ash, manufactured sand aggregates, and different molarities of alkaline activators, to incorporate waste byproducts in a geopolymer concrete white-topping pavement layer. Recent developments have led to the emergence of geopolymers as distinct classes of materials. In the 1990s, fly ash-based geopolymers became more popular than other kinds, as they are more efficient compared to Portland cement concrete. Results: Aluminosilicate gel can be obtained by combining fly ash and alkaline solution. A comprehensive literature review of geopolymer concrete was performed in this study. It examines its critical design parameters, including alkaline solutions, curing temperatures, curing methods, workability, and compressive strength under various environmental conditions. This review provides a unique opportunity for researchers to understand how geopolymer concrete performs. Discussion: A range of conditions were investigated to determine how to enhance and use this material in a variety of ways. The fresh characteristics of different mixes were studied using slump and Vee-Bee tests, and the characteristics of the cured concrete mixes were determined using flexural, compressive, and flexural fatigue tests. The results indicated that the use of manufactured sand and fly ash with high-molarity alkaline activators results in a geopolymer concrete with an excellent maximum resistance of 5.1 N/mm2 workability, strength, and fatigue properties, making it suitable for use in roadway pavement


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