467 research outputs found

    “It’s not a waste of time!” Academics’ views on the role and function of academic reading: A thematic analysis

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    The role of academic writing in the development of academic literacy in university students has been considered in some depth in the literature. However, the view of lecturers as to the role and value of academic reading is notably less explored and warrants further exploration. Academic staff from a broad range of subject areas were invited to participate in a survey on the role and function of academic reading. Using an explorative approach, the study investigated academics’ views about reading behaviour with regards to the students’ academic journey, their own academic development, and its incorporation into their teaching. All comments were thematically analysed, resulting in a number of elicited themes and subthemes. The paper highlighted the key role of academics in the modelling, rewarding, and teaching of academic reading and discusses practical implications for Higher Education, particularly with regards to academic teaching and students’ skills development

    Personal development planning in the first year

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    The approach to quality and standards in higher education (HE) in Scotland is enhancement led and learner centred. It was developed through a partnership of the Scottish Funding Council (SFC), Universities Scotland, the National Union of Students in Scotland (NUS Scotland) and the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education (QAA) Scotland. The Higher Education Academy has also joined that partnership. The Enhancement Themes are a key element of a five-part framework, which has been designed to provide an integrated approach to quality assurance and enhancement. The Enhancement Themes support learners and staff at all levels in further improving higher education in Scotland; they draw on developing innovative practice within the UK and internationally The five elements of the framework are: z a comprehensive programme of subject-level reviews undertaken by higher education institutions (HEIs) themselves; guidance is published by the SFC (www.sfc.ac.uk) z enhancement-led institutional review (ELIR), run by QAA Scotland (www.qaa.ac.uk/reviews/ELIR) z improved forms of public information about quality; guidance is provided by the SFC (www.sfc.ac.uk) z a greater voice for students in institutional quality systems, supported by a national development service - student participation in quality scotland (sparqs) (www.sparqs.org.uk) z a national programme of Enhancement Themes aimed at developing and sharing good practice to enhance the student learning experience, facilitated by QAA Scotland (www.enhancementthemes.ac.uk). The topics for the Enhancement Themes are identified through consultation with the sector and implemented by steering committees whose members are drawn from the sector and the student body. The steering committees have the task of establishing a programme of development activities, which draw on national and international good practice. Publications emerging from each Theme are intended to provide important reference points for HEIs in the ongoing strategic enhancement of their teaching and learning provision. Full details of each Theme, its steering committee, the range of research and development activities as well as the outcomes are published on the Enhancement Themes website (www.enhancementthemes.ac.uk). To further support the implementation and embedding of a quality enhancement culture within the sector - including taking forward the outcomes of the Enhancement Themes - an overarching committee, the Scottish Higher Education Enhancement Committee (SHEEC), chaired by Professor Kenneth Miller, Vice-Principal, University of Strathclyde, has the important dual role of supporting the overall approach of the Enhancement Themes, including the five-year rolling plan, as well as institutional enhancement strategies and management of quality. SHEEC, working with the individual topic-based Enhancement Themes' steering committees, will continue to provide a powerful vehicle for progressing the enhancement-led approach to quality and standards in Scottish higher education

    “It’s not a waste of time!” Academics’ views on the role and function of academic reading: A thematic analysis

    Get PDF
    The role of academic writing in the development of academic literacy in university students has been considered in some depth in the literature. However, the view of lecturers as to the role and value of academic reading is notably less explored and warrants further exploration. Academic staff from a broad range of subject areas were invited to participate in a survey on the role and function of academic reading. Using an explorative approach, the study investigated academics’ views about reading behaviour with regards to the students’ academic journey, their own academic development, and its incorporation into their teaching. All comments were thematically analysed, resulting in a number of elicited themes and subthemes. The paper highlighted the key role of academics in the modelling, rewarding, and teaching of academic reading and discusses practical implications for Higher Education, particularly with regards to academic teaching and students’ skills development

    The effects of polygamy on children and adolescents: a systematic review

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    The objective was to review research that examined the effects of polygyny (a specific form of polygamy) on children and adolescents. A systematic literature search and review was conducted of research published 1994–2014 that focused on psychological variables, primary data collection, and compared data on children and adolescents from polygynous families with monogamous families. Critical analysis included the relevance of methods to the culture, including the psychometric properties reported. A total of 13 papers satisfied the inclusion criteria. The review found more mental health problems, social problems and lower academic achievement for children and adolescents from polygynous than monogamous families. Similarities between children and adolescents from polygynous and monogamous families included self-esteem, anxiety and depression scores. Although polygynous family structures appear to have detrimental effects on children and adolescents, the mediating effects of parental education, economy and family functioning need to be investigated

    Evaluation of delirium screening tools in geriatric medical inpatients: a diagnostic test accuracy study

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    Introduction: screening all unscheduled older adults for delirium is recommended in national guidelines, but there is no consensus on how to perform initial assessment. Aim: to evaluate the test accuracy of five brief cognitive assessment tools for delirium diagnosis in routine clinical practice. Methods: a consecutive cohort of non-elective, elderly care (older than 65 years) hospital inpatients admitted to a geriatric medical assessment unit of an urban teaching hospital. Reference assessments were clinical diagnosis of delirium performed by elderly care physicians. Routine screening tests were: Abbreviated Mental Test (AMT-10, AMT-4), 4 A's Test (4AT), brief Confusion Assessment Method (bCAM), months of the year backwards (MOTYB) and informant Single Question in Delirium (SQiD). Results: we assessed 500 patients, mean age 83 years (range = 66−101). Clinical diagnoses were: 93 of 500 (18.6%) definite delirium, 104 of 500 (20.8%) possible delirium and 277 of 500 (55.4%) no delirium; 266 of 500 (53.2%) were identified as definite or possible dementia. For diagnosis of definite delirium, AMT-4 (cut-point < 3/4) had a sensitivity of 92.7% (95% confidence interval (CI): 84.8–97.3), with a specificity of 53.7% (95% CI: 48.1–59.2); AMT-10 (<4/10), MOTYB (<4/12) and SQiD showed similar performance. bCAM had a sensitivity of 70.3% (95% CI: 58.5–80.3) with a specificity of 91.4% (95% CI: 87.7–94.3). 4AT (>4/12) had a sensitivity of 86.7% (95% CI: 77.5–93.2) and specificity of 69.5% (95% CI: 64.4–74.3). Conclusions: short screening tools such as AMT-4 or MOTYB have good sensitivity for definite delirium, but poor specificity; these tools may be reasonable as a first stage in assessment for delirium. The 4AT is feasible and appears to perform well with good sensitivity and reasonable specificity

    Creating academic communities: why bother?

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    Why develop an academic community? Can this enhance the student experience and positively impact on key metrics? Being a member of a community (group) is a source of individual wellbeing (Akerlof & Kranton, 2000) and happiness Layard, 2005). This group membership can also dissolve the us and them attitudes common in consumerist metaphors of education. Organised around three key themes of Communication, Students as Partners and Shared Experience, this session will explore the development of an academic community and the positives (and pitfalls) of this. We argue that creating a community within a school is a critical first step in enhancing student engagement

    Human paraoxonase gene cluster polymorphisms as predictors of coronary heart disease risk in the prospective Northwick Park Heart Study II

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    AbstractThe anti-atherogenic effect of HDL has been suggested to be partly due to the action of HDL-associated paraoxonase (PON). Three distinct enzymes have been identified, encoded by PON1, PON2 and PON3, clustered on chromosome 7q21–q22. Two cSNPs in PON1 (L55M and Q192R) and one in PON2 (S311C) have been implicated as independent risk factors for coronary heart disease (CHD) in some, but not all, studies. A PON3 SNP (A99A) was identified and the effect of these four PON SNPs on HDL levels and CHD risk was examined in the prospective Northwick Park Heart Study II (NPHSII). Genotype frequencies did not differ between cases and controls but the CHD risk associated with smoking was significantly modified by PON1 L55M genotype. Compared to LL non-smokers, LL smokers had a hazard ratio (HR) of 1.30 (95% CI 0.81–2.06) while M-allele carriers had a HR of 1.76 (1.17–2.67). When genotypes were analysed in combination, men with the genotype PON1 55 LM/MM+PON2 311 CC, had HR of 3.54 (1.81–6.93) compared to PON1 LL+PON2 SS/SC men (interaction P=0.004). These effects were independent of classical risk factors. These data demonstrate the importance of stratifying by environmental factors and the use of multiple SNPs for genetic analysis

    Iodixanol Has a Favourable Fibrinolytic Profile Compared to Iohexol in Cardiac Patients Undergoing Elective Angiography: A Double-Blind, Randomized, Parallel Group Study

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    Background   There is no consensus and a limited evidence base for choice of contrast agents (CA) in angiography. This study evaluated the impact of iohexol and iodixanol CA on fibrinolytic factors (tissue plasminogen activator [t-PA] and plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 [PAI-1]), as well as platelet-monocyte conjugates in cardiac patients undergoing elective angiography in a double-blind, randomised parallel group study.  Methods   Patients (men, 50–70 years old; n = 12) were randomised to receive either iohexol (Omnipaque; n = 6) or iodixanol (Visipaque; n = 6) during elective angiography at Raigmore Hospital, Inverness, UK. Arterial and venous blood samples were drawn prior to CA delivery and following angiography. Assessment of platelet-monocyte conjugation, t-PA and PAI-1 antigen and activity was conducted in samples pre- and post-angiography.  Outcome   Plasma t-PA antigen was depressed equally in the study groups after angiography, but there was a greater reduction in PAI-1 antigen in the group receiving iodixanol. These findings corresponded to a substantial reduction in t-PA activity in patients receiving iohexol, with no change in those receiving iodixanol (P = 0.023 between the CA groups). Both CAs caused a reduction in platelet-monocyte conjugation, with no difference between the groups. No adverse events were reported during the trial.  Conclusion Avoiding reduced plasma t-PA activity might be an important consideration in choosing iodixanol over iohexol in patients at risk of thrombosis following angiography. The trial is registered on the ISRCTN register (ISRCTN51509735) and funded by the Coronary Thrombosis Trust and National Health Service (Highland) R&D Endowments. The funders had no influence over study design or reporting
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