77 research outputs found

    ACT Score Declines: Looking for the Source

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    During the last 15 years there has been a well documented decline in achievement test scores. Declines have been documented on both the American College Testing Program (ACT) and the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT). An increased interest in t he score declines and their possible explanations has also taken place in the last 10 years. The explanation for the declines fit under four main headings: (1) problems with the tests, (2) changes in the testing population, (3) changes in society, and (4) changes in the schools. The purpose of this study was to begin with the test itself and check for possible score drift between two forms of the ACT, a 1977 ACT form and a form 5 to 7 years older than that. The sample population consisted of 242 juniors at Logan High School, Logan, Utah, and 153 juniors at Skyview High School, Smithfield, Utah, during the 1976-77 school year. These samples represent 83% of the Logan High junior population and 50% of the Skyview High junior class. All subjects took the two forms of the ACT mentioned above. In analyzing the data from the major samples with a two-tailed t test, it was found that there was a significant difference in the two tests. The largest difference was found on the mathematics subtest; the difference being that students scored higher on the older forms, not only on the mathematics subtest, but on the other subtests, also. A two-way analysis of variance with repeated measures was used to check for variance due to sex of subjects and form of test and their interractions. The findings were consistent with those of the t test. It was found that the mathematics scores varied due to the form of the test. The only sex difference was that females\u27 standard scores were higher than males\u27 on the English subtests of both ACT forms. This study found a significant difference between an older ACT form and a 1977 ACT form as measured by subjects\u27 scores on both. The findings of this research indicate that the test itself may be a partial cause of the current ACT score declines

    The development of tools and guidelines for surfing resource management

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    Surfing is a mainstream pastime and competitive sport in many countries and provides a full range of economic, social, physical, and mental health benefits. Maintaining the integrity of surf breaks has proven to be a challenge, with a litany of degraded or destroyed surfing locations worldwide. This is attributed to a deficiency in expertise and experience in implementing surf science and management within governing authorities, associated consultants, or stakeholder groups; combined with a lack of value recognition and identification. This work considers how surf breaks as coastal resources could be better managed. A literature review of technical reports, published articles, statutory instruments, evidence, and consents, along with interactive stakeholder workshops and surveys to identify key considerations, are combined with complex numerical modelling and machine learning methods to develop tools for effective surf break management. In Aotearoa New Zealand, a surf break is described in policy as having various geophysical components in the vicinity of locations where surfing takes place and the areas offshore. Given the wide range of benefits associated with surfing, and the complexities of managing a natural resource, albeit in some cases anthropologically modified, the term ‘surfing resource’ was established and defined as a major outcome of this work and as a step in the process of developing a set of Management Guidelines for Surfing Resources (the Guidelines). The Guidelines, which are a world first, consider what aspects of the environment are the most important to surfing resources management, provide direction, as implementable steps, to authorities and proponents of activities in the coastal environment that can impact surfing resources, and include identification and monitoring strategies as well as a novel risk assessment framework which is underpinned by a surf break’s sensitivity as a function of geomorphological composition. The Guidelines are supported by research streams that required field data collection and monitoring system development, numerical modelling, and machine learning to improve our understanding of surf break functionality and/or better our management strategies. This work emphasises the role of bathymetric features outside the surf zone that contribute to surfing wave quality, and the value of establishing swell corridors for management purposes. An automated system has been developed to monitor the key surfing wave quality indicator of peel angle through both space and time. Effective surfing resource management requires a holistic, inclusive, case-by-case approach, that may require cultural, social and geophysical assessment, which is best implemented proactively with the identification of surfing resources and the establishment of environmental baselines

    An aeroacoustic investigation into the effect of self-oscillating trailing edge flaplets

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    The aeroacoustics of a NACA 0012 aerofoil with an array of self-oscillating flexible flaplets attached on the trailing edge has been investigated at low to moderate chord based Reynolds number (50,000 -- 350,000) and at geometric angles of attack from αg=0∘\alpha_g = 0^\circ -- 20∘20^\circ. When the aerofoil is untripped, tonal peaks are observed on the baseline aerofoil. When the passive flaplets are attached to the pressure side of the aerofoil, the tonal peak is removed. If the flaplets are then placed on the suction side, the tonal peak is reduced, but not removed. It is therefore hypothesised that the flaplets on the pressure side modifies the laminar separation bubble situated on the pressure side of the aerofoil, a key mechanism for tonal noise. Throughout all cases, both tripped and untripped, a low frequency (0.1 kHz -- 0.6 kHz) noise reduction and a slight increase at higher frequencies (>2 kHz) is seen. This gives an average overall sound pressure level (OSPL) reduction of 1.5 -- 2 dB for the flaplets affixed to the pressure side. The cases where the tonal noise component is removed an OSPL reduction of up to 20 dB can be seen

    The genomic landscape of balanced cytogenetic abnormalities associated with human congenital anomalies

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    Despite the clinical significance of balanced chromosomal abnormalities (BCAs), their characterization has largely been restricted to cytogenetic resolution. We explored the landscape of BCAs at nucleotide resolution in 273 subjects with a spectrum of congenital anomalies. Whole-genome sequencing revised 93% of karyotypes and demonstrated complexity that was cryptic to karyotyping in 21% of BCAs, highlighting the limitations of conventional cytogenetic approaches. At least 33.9% of BCAs resulted in gene disruption that likely contributed to the developmental phenotype, 5.2% were associated with pathogenic genomic imbalances, and 7.3% disrupted topologically associated domains (TADs) encompassing known syndromic loci. Remarkably, BCA breakpoints in eight subjects altered a single TAD encompassing MEF2C, a known driver of 5q14.3 microdeletion syndrome, resulting in decreased MEF2C expression. We propose that sequence-level resolution dramatically improves prediction of clinical outcomes for balanced rearrangements and provides insight into new pathogenic mechanisms, such as altered regulation due to changes in chromosome topology

    Patient non-attendance at urgent referral appointments for suspected cancer and its links to cancer diagnosis and one year mortality : A cohort study of patients referred on the Two Week Wait pathway

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    BACKGROUND: The 'Two Week Wait' policy aims to ensure patients with suspected cancer are seen within two weeks of referral. However, patient non-attendance can result in this target being missed. This study aimed to identify predictors of non-attendance; and analyse the relationship between attendance and outcomes including cancer diagnosis and early mortality. METHODS: A cohort study of 109,433 adults registered at 105 general practices, referred to a cancer centre within a large NHS hospital trust (April 2009 to December 2016) on the 'Two Week Wait' pathway. RESULTS: 5673 (5.2%) patients did not attend. Non-attendance was largely predicted by patient factors (younger and older age, male gender, greater deprivation, suspected cancer site, earlier year of referral, greater distance to the hospital) over practice factors (greater deprivation, lower Quality and Outcomes Framework score, lower cancer conversion rate, lower cancer detection rate). 10,360 (9.6%) patients were diagnosed with cancer within six months of referral (9.8% attending patients, 5.6% non-attending patients). Among these patients, 2029 (19.6%) died within 12 months of diagnosis: early mortality risk was 31.3% in non-attenders and 19.2% in attending patients. CONCLUSIONS: Non-attendance at urgent referral appointments for suspected cancer involves a minority of patients but happens in predictable groups. Cancer diagnosis was less likely in non-attending patients but these patients had worse early mortality outcomes than attending patients. The study findings have implications for cancer services and policy

    Finishing the euchromatic sequence of the human genome

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    The sequence of the human genome encodes the genetic instructions for human physiology, as well as rich information about human evolution. In 2001, the International Human Genome Sequencing Consortium reported a draft sequence of the euchromatic portion of the human genome. Since then, the international collaboration has worked to convert this draft into a genome sequence with high accuracy and nearly complete coverage. Here, we report the result of this finishing process. The current genome sequence (Build 35) contains 2.85 billion nucleotides interrupted by only 341 gaps. It covers ∌99% of the euchromatic genome and is accurate to an error rate of ∌1 event per 100,000 bases. Many of the remaining euchromatic gaps are associated with segmental duplications and will require focused work with new methods. The near-complete sequence, the first for a vertebrate, greatly improves the precision of biological analyses of the human genome including studies of gene number, birth and death. Notably, the human enome seems to encode only 20,000-25,000 protein-coding genes. The genome sequence reported here should serve as a firm foundation for biomedical research in the decades ahead

    Guidelines for the use and interpretation of assays for monitoring autophagy (3rd edition)