Excellence in Research and Innovation for Humanity

International Science Index

Commenced in January 1999 Frequency: Monthly Edition: International Paper Count: 30

Social, Behavioral, Educational, Economic, Business and Industrial Engineering

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  • 30
    Data Projects for “Social Good”: Challenges and Opportunities
    One of the application fields for data analysis techniques and technologies gaining momentum is the area of social good or “common good”, covering cases related to humanitarian crises, global health care, or ecology and environmental issues, among others. The promotion of data-driven projects in this field aims at increasing the efficacy and efficiency of social initiatives, improving the way these actions help humanity in general and people in need in particular. This application field, however, poses its own barriers and challenges when developing data-driven projects, lagging behind in comparison with other scenarios. These challenges derive from aspects such as the scope and scale of the social issue to solve, cultural and political barriers, the skills of main stakeholders and the technological resources available, the motivation to be engaged in such projects, or the ethical and legal issues related to sensitive data. This paper analyzes the application of data projects in the field of social good, reviewing its current state and noteworthy initiatives, and presenting a framework covering the key aspects to analyze in such projects. The goal is to provide guidelines to understand the main challenges and opportunities for this type of data project, as well as identifying the main differential issues compared to “classical” data projects in general. A case study is presented on the initial steps and stakeholder analysis of a data project for the inclusion of refugees in the city of Frankfurt, Germany, in order to empirically confront the framework with a real example.
    Crowdsourcing as an Open Innovation Tool for Entrepreneurship
    As traditional innovation has already taken its place in managers’ to do lists; managers and companies have started to look for new ways to go beyond the traditional innovation. Because of its cost, traditional innovation became a burden for companies since they only use inner sources. Companies have intended to use outer innovation sources to decrease the innovation costs and Open Innovation has become a new solution for companies at this point. Crowdsourcing is a tool of Open Innovation and it consists of two words: Outsourcing and crowd. Crowdsourcing aims to benefit from the efforts and ideas of a virtual crowd via Internet technologies. In addition to that, crowdsourcing can help entrepreneurs to innovate and grow their businesses. They can crowd source anything they can use to grow their businesses: Ideas, investment, new business, new partners, new solutions, new policies, data, insight, marketing or talent. Therefore, the aim of the study is to be able to show some possible ways for entrepreneurs to benefit from crowdsourcing to expand or foster their businesses. In the study, the term crowdsourcing has been given in details and these possible ways have been searched and given.
    A Test to Express Diagnostic Cohesion of Football Team

    We proposed to assess the cohesion of a football team by its subject-goal and subject-value unity according to the A.V. Petrovsky theory. Goal unity was measured by the degree of compliance of the priority targets for various players in the team. Values were estimated by the coincidence of the ideas about a perfect football player. On the basis of the provisional diagnosis of the six teams, we had made the lists of goals and values. The tests were piloted on 35 football teams. The results allowed not only to compare quantitatively the cohesion of the different teams, but also to identify subgroups within the team.

    Conceptual Model for Massive Open Online Blended Courses Based on Disciplines’ Concepts Capitalization and Obstacles’ Detection

    Since its appearance, the MOOC (massive open online course) is gaining more and more intention of the educational communities over the world. Apart from the current MOOCs design and purposes, the creators of MOOC focused on the importance of the connection and knowledge exchange between individuals in learning. In this paper, we present a conceptual model for massive open online blended courses where teachers over the world can collaborate and exchange their experience to get a common efficient content designed as a MOOC opened to their students to live a better learning experience. This model is based on disciplines’ concepts capitalization and the detection of the obstacles met by their students when faced with problem situations (exercises, projects, case studies, etc.). This detection is possible by analyzing the frequently of semantic errors committed by the students. The participation of teachers in the design of the course and the attendance by their students can guarantee an efficient and extensive participation (an important number of participants) in the course, the learners’ motivation and the evaluation issues, in the way that the teachers designing the course assess their students. Thus, the teachers review, together with their knowledge, offer a better assessment and efficient connections to their students.

    Investigation of the Main Trends of Tourist Expenses in Georgia

    The main purpose of the article is to make complex statistical analysis of tourist expenses of foreign visitors. We used mixed technique of selection that implies rules of random and proportional selection. Computer software SPSS was used to compute statistical data for corresponding analysis. Corresponding methodology of tourism statistics was implemented according to international standards. Important information was collected and grouped from the major Georgian airports. Techniques of statistical observation were prepared. A representative population of foreign visitors and a rule of selection of respondents were determined. We have a trend of growth of tourist numbers and share of tourists from post-soviet countries constantly increases. Level of satisfaction with tourist facilities and quality of service has grown, but still we have a problem of disparity between quality of service and prices. The design of tourist expenses of foreign visitors is diverse; competitiveness of tourist products of Georgian tourist companies is higher.

    Forensic Medical Capacities of Research of Saliva Stains on Physical Evidence after Washing

    Recent advances in genetics have allowed increasing acutely the capacities of the formation of reliable evidence in conducting forensic examinations. Thus, traces of biological origin are important sources of information about a crime. Currently, around the world, sexual offenses have increased, and among them are those in which the criminals use various detergents to remove traces of their crime. A feature of modern synthetic detergents is the presence of biological additives - enzymes. Enzymes purposefully destroy stains of biological origin. To study the nature and extent of the impact of modern washing powders on saliva stains on the physical evidence, specially prepared test specimens of different types of tissues to which saliva was applied have been examined. Materials and Methods: Washing machines of famous manufacturers of household appliances have been used with different production characteristics and advertised brands of washing powder for test washing. Over 3,500 experimental samples were tested. After washing, the traces of saliva were identified using modern research methods of forensic medicine. Results: The influence was tested and the dependence of the use of different washing programs, types of washing machines and washing powders in the process of establishing saliva trace and identify of the stains on the physical evidence while washing was revealed. The results of experimental and practical expert studies have shown that in most cases it is not possible to draw the conclusions in the identification of saliva traces on physical evidence after washing. This is a consequence of the effect of biological additives and other additional factors on traces of saliva during washing. Conclusions: On the basis of the results of the study, the feasibility of saliva traces of the stains on physical evidence after washing is established. The use of modern molecular genetic methods makes it possible to partially solve the problems arising in the study of unlaundered evidence. Additional study of physical evidence after washing facilitates detection and investigation of sexual offenses against women and children.

    Design of Distribution Network for Gas Cylinders in Jordan

    Performance of a supply chain is directly related to a distribution network that entails the location of storing materials or products and how products are delivered to the end customer through different stages in the supply chain. This study analyses the current distribution network used for delivering gas cylinders to end customer in Jordan. Evaluation of current distribution has been conducted across customer service components. A modification on the current distribution network in terms of central warehousing in each city in the country improves the response time and customer experience. 

    A Sociological Study of Rural Women Attitudes toward Education, Health and Work outside Home in Beheira Governorate, Egypt
    This research was performed to evaluate the attitudes of rural women towards education, health and work outside the home. The study was based on a random sample of 147 rural women, Kafr-Rahmaniyah village was chosen for the study because its life expectancy at birth for females, education and percentage of females in the labor force, were the highest in the district. The study data were collected from rural female respondents, using a face-to-face questionnaire. In addition, the study estimated several factors like age, main occupation, family size, monthly household income, geographic cosmopolites, and degree of social participation for rural women respondents. Using Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS), data were analyzed by non-parametric statistical methods. The main finding in this study was a significant relationship between each of the previous variables and each of rural women’s attitudes toward education, health, and work outside home. The study concluded with some recommendations. The most important element is ensuring attention to rural women’s needs, requirements and rights via raising their health awareness, education and their contributions in their society.
    Digital Marketing Maturity Models: Overview and Comparison

    The variety of available digital tools, strategies and activities might confuse and disorient even an experienced marketer. This applies in particular to B2B companies, which are usually less flexible in uptaking of digital technology than B2C companies. B2B companies are lacking a framework that corresponds to the specifics of the B2B business, and which helps to evaluate a company’s capabilities and to choose an appropriate path. A B2B digital marketing maturity model helps to fill this gap. However, modern marketing offers no widely approved digital marketing maturity model, and thus, some marketing institutions provide their own tools. The purpose of this paper is building an optimized B2B digital marketing maturity model based on a SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats) analysis of existing models. The current study provides an analytical review of the existing digital marketing maturity models with open access. The results of the research are twofold. First, the provided SWOT analysis outlines the main advantages and disadvantages of existing models. Secondly, the strengths of existing digital marketing maturity models, helps to identify the main characteristics and the structure of an optimized B2B digital marketing maturity model. The research findings indicate that only one out of three analyzed models could be used as a separate tool. This study is among the first examining the use of maturity models in digital marketing. It helps businesses to choose between the existing digital marketing models, the most effective one. Moreover, it creates a base for future research on digital marketing maturity models. This study contributes to the emerging B2B digital marketing literature by providing a SWOT analysis of the existing digital marketing maturity models and suggesting a structure and main characteristics of an optimized B2B digital marketing maturity model.

    Social Business Process Management and Business Process Management Maturity

    Business process management (BPM) is a well-known holistic discipline focused on managing business processes with the intention of achieving higher level of BPM maturity and better organizational performance. In recent period, traditional BPM faced some of its limitations like model-reality divide and lost innovation. Following latest trends, as an attempt to overcome the issues of traditional BPM, there has been an introduction of applying the principles of social software in managing business processes which led to the development of social BPM. However, there are not many authors or studies dealing with this topic so this study aims to contribute to that literature gap and to examine the link between the level of BPM maturity and the usage of social BPM. To meet these objectives, a survey within the companies with more than 50 employees has been conducted. The results reveal that the usage of social BPM is higher within the companies which achieved higher level of BPM maturity. This paper provides an overview, analysis and discussion of collected data regarding BPM maturity and social BPM within the observed companies and identifies the main social BPM principles.

    Lab Activities for Introducing Nanoscience to Teachers and Students

    Nanoscience has become one of the main science fields in the world; its importance is reflected in both society and industry; therefore, it is very important to intensify educational programs among teachers and students that aim to introduce "Nano Concepts" to them. Two different lab activities were developed for demonstrating the importance of nanoscale materials using unique points of view. In the first, electrical conductive films made of silver nanoparticles were fabricated. The silver nanoparticles were protected against aggregation using electrical conductive polypyrrole, which acts also as conductive bridge between them. The experiments show a simpler way for fabricating conductive thin film than the much more complicated and costly conventional method. In the second part, the participants could produce emulsions of liposome structures using Phosphatidylcholine as a surfactant, and following by minimizing the size of it from micro-scale to nanometer scale (400 nm), using simple apparatus called Mini-Extruder, in that way the participants could realize the change in solution transparency, and the effect of Tyndall when the size of the liposomes is reduced. Freshmen students from the Academic Arab College for Education in Haifa, Israel, who are studying to become science teachers, participated in this lab activity as part of the course "Chemistry in the Lab". These experiments are appropriate for teachers, high school and college students.

    The Characteristics of Transformation of Institutional Changes and Georgia

    The analysis of transformation of institutional changes outlines two important characteristics. These are: the speed of the changes and their sequence. Successful transformation must be carried out in three different stages; On the first stage, macroeconomic stabilization must be achieved with the help of fiscal and monetary tools. Two-tier banking system should be established and the active functions of central bank should be replaced by the passive ones (reserve requirements and refinancing rate), together with the involvement growth of private sector. Fiscal policy by itself here means the creation of tax system which must replace previously existing direct state revenues; the share of subsidies in the state expenses must be reduced also. The second stage begins after reaching the macroeconomic stabilization at a time of change of formal institutes which must stimulate the private business. Corporate legislation creates a competitive environment at the market and the privatization of state companies takes place. Bankruptcy and contract law is created. he third stage is the most extended one, which means the formation of all state structures that is necessary for the further proper functioning of a market economy. These three stages about the cycle period of political and social transformation and the hierarchy of changes can also be grouped by the different methodology: on the first and the most short-term stage the transfer of power takes place. On the second stage institutions corresponding to new goal are created. The last phase of transformation is extended in time and it includes the infrastructural, socio-cultural and socio-structural changes. The main goal of this research is to explore and identify the features of such kind of models.

    Measurement of Intellectual Capital in an Algerian Company

    Every modern company should measure the value of its intellectual capital and to report to complement the traditional annual balance sheets. The purpose of this work is to measure the intellectual capital in an Algerian company (or production system) using the Weightless Wealth Tool Kit (WWTK). The results of the measurement of intellectual capital are supplemented by traditional financial ratios. The measurement was applied to the National Company of Wells Services (ENSP) in Hassi Messaoud city, in the south of Algeria. We calculated the intellectual capital (intangible resources) of the ENSP to help the organization to better capitalize on its potential of workers and their know-how. The intangible value of the ENSP is evaluated at 16,936,173,345 DA in 2015.

    Statistical Modeling of Mandarin Tone Sandhi: Neutralization of Underlying Pitch Targets

    This study statistically models the surface f0 contour and the underlying pitch target of a well-studied third sandhi tone of Mandarin Chinese. Although the growth curve analysis on the surface f0 contours indicates non-neutralization of this sandhi tone (T3) and the base T2, their underlying pitch targets do show neutralization. These results in Mandarin are also consistent with the perception of native speakers, where they cannot distinguish the third T3 from the base T2, compensating contextual variation. It is possible to use the proposed statistical procedure of testing underlying pitch targets to verify tone sandhi processes in other tonal languages.

    The Political Biographies of Social Workers: A Qualitative Study of the Political Lives of Social Workers

    This paper will explore the political biographies of social workers in a neoliberal era. The findings are based on a research project for a successfully completed professional doctorate in social work. The methodology deployed for the research is a combination of constructivist grounded theory and biographical inquiry. The paper will present findings from 14 biographical interviews and will focus on one case study of a participant whose life story is richly informed by political social work. The 14 participants reflect different genders, ethnic identities, cultural and linguistic identities, age and length of social work careers. The participants also reflect different forms of political engagement, such as, as political activists and members of political parties, including parliamentarians. The findings demonstrate how deeply ingrained the social work identity is amongst the participants and how their political identity has remained strongly social democratic in nature despite the many changes in the social work profession since the rise of neoliberalism as a thought collective and policy package. The individual case study will explore the early roots of political identity in the childhood and nurturing years and the interface with subsequent social work and political careers. It will also explore the evolution of the participant’s political identity in the social work career. The case study will also present findings on how the participant has contributed to the political field with policy involvement and initiatives. The presentation will conclude with a discussion on how this particular group of social workers can best contribute to the future direction of the social work profession.

    Cultivating a Successful Academic Career in Higher Education Institutes: The 10 X C Model

    The modern era has brought with it significant organizational changes. These changes have not bypassed the academic world, and along with the old academic bonds that include a world of knowledge and ethics, academic faculty members are required more than ever not only to survive in the academic world, but also to thrive and flourish and position themselves as modern and opinionated academicians. Based upon the writings of organizational consultants, the article suggests a 10 X C model for cultivating an academic backbone, as well as emphasizing its input to the professional growth of university and college academics: Competence, Calculations of pain & gain, Character, Commitment, Communication, Curiosity, Coping, Courage, Collaboration and Celebration.

    Modelling a Hospital as a Queueing Network: Analysis for Improving Performance
    In this paper, the flow of different classes of patients into a hospital is modelled and analyzed by using the queueing network analyzer (QNA) algorithm and discrete event simulation. Input data for QNA are the rate and variability parameters of the arrival and service times in addition to the number of servers in each facility. Patient flows mostly match real flow for a hospital in Egypt. Based on the analysis of the waiting times, two approaches are suggested for improving performance: Separating patients into service groups, and adopting different service policies for sequencing patients through hospital units. The separation of a specific group of patients, with higher performance target, to be served separately from the rest of patients requiring lower performance target, requires the same capacity while improves performance for the selected group of patients with higher target. Besides, it is shown that adopting the shortest processing time and shortest remaining processing time service policies among other tested policies would results in, respectively, 11.47% and 13.75% reduction in average waiting time relative to first come first served policy.
    Metal Ship and Robotic Car: A Hands-On Activity to Develop Scientific and Engineering Skills for High School Students

    Metal Ship and Robotic Car is one of the hands-on activities in the course, the Fundamental of Engineering that can be divided into three parts. The first part, the metal ships, was made by using engineering drawings, physics and mathematics knowledge. The second part is where the students learned how to construct a robotic car and control it using computer programming. In the last part, the students had to combine the workings of these two objects in the final testing. This aim of study was to investigate the effectiveness of hands-on activity by integrating Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) concepts to develop scientific and engineering skills. The results showed that the majority of students felt this hands-on activity lead to an increased confidence level in the integration of STEM. Moreover, 48% of all students engaged well with the STEM concepts. Students could obtain the knowledge of STEM through hands-on activities with the topics science and mathematics, engineering drawing, engineering workshop and computer programming; most students agree and strongly agree with this learning process. This indicated that the hands-on activity: “Metal Ship and Robotic Car” is a useful tool to integrate each aspect of STEM. Furthermore, hands-on activities positively influence a student’s interest which leads to increased learning achievement and also in developing scientific and engineering skills.

    The Analysis of Secondary Case Studies as a Starting Point for Grounded Theory Studies: An Example from the Enterprise Software Industry
    A fundamental principle of Grounded Theory (GT) is to prevent the formation of preconceived theories. This implies the need to start a research study with an open mind and to avoid being absorbed by the existing literature. However, to start a new study without an understanding of the research domain and its context can be extremely challenging. This paper presents a research approach that simultaneously supports a researcher to identify and to focus on critical areas of a research project and prevent the formation of prejudiced concepts by the current body of literature. This approach comprises of four stages: Selection of secondary case studies, analysis of secondary case studies, development of an initial conceptual framework, development of an initial interview guide. The analysis of secondary case studies as a starting point for a research project allows a researcher to create a first understanding of a research area based on real-world cases without being influenced by the existing body of theory. It enables a researcher to develop through a structured course of actions a firm guide that establishes a solid starting point for further investigations. Thus, the described approach may have significant implications for GT researchers who aim to start a study within a given research area.
    Problems Occurring in the Process of Audit by Taking into Consideration their Theoretic Aspects against the Background of Reforms Conducted in a Country: The Example of Georgia

    The purpose of this article is an examination of the meaning of theoretic aspects of audit in the context of solving of specific problems of the audit. The audit’s aim is the estimation of financial statements by the auditor, i.e. if they are prepared according to the basic requirements of current financial statements. By examination of concrete examples, we can clearly see problems created in an audit and in often cases, those contradictions which can be caused by incompliance of matters regulated by legislation and by reality. An important part of this work is the analysis of reform in the direction of business accounting, statements and audit in Georgia and its comparison with EU countries. In the article, attention is concentrated on the analysis of specific problems of auditing practice and ways of their solving by taking into consideration theoretical aspects of the audit are proposed.

    Stating Best Commercialization Method: An Unanswered Question from Scholars and Practitioners

    Commercialization method is a means to make inventions available at the market for final consumption. It is described as an important tool for keeping business enterprises sustainable and improving national economic growth. Thus, there are several scholarly publications on it, either presenting or testing different methods for commercialization. However, young entrepreneurs, technologists and scientists would like to know the best method to commercialize their innovations. Then, this question arises: What is the best commercialization method? To answer the question, a systematic literature review was conducted, and practitioners were interviewed. The literary results revealed that there are many methods but new methods are needed to improve commercialization especially during these times of economic crisis and political uncertainty. Similarly, the empirical results showed there are several methods, but the best method is the one that reduces costs, reduces the risks associated with uncertainty, and improves customer participation and acceptability. Therefore, it was concluded that new commercialization method is essential for today's high technologies and a method was presented.

    Open Innovation Laboratory for Rapid Realization of Sensing, Smart and Sustainable Products (S3 Products) for Higher Education
    Higher education methods need to evolve because the new generations of students are learning in different ways. One way is by adopting emergent technologies, new learning methods and promoting the maker movement. As a result, Tecnologico de Monterrey is developing Open Innovation Laboratories as an immediate response to educational challenges of the world. This paper presents an Open Innovation Laboratory for Rapid Realization of Sensing, Smart and Sustainable Products (S3 Products). The Open Innovation Laboratory is composed of a set of specific resources where students and teachers use them to provide solutions to current problems of priority sectors through the development of a new generation of products. This new generation of products considers the concepts Sensing, Smart, and Sustainable. The Open Innovation Laboratory has been implemented in different courses in the context of New Product Development (NPD) and Integrated Manufacturing Systems (IMS) at Tecnologico de Monterrey. The implementation consists of adapting this Open Innovation Laboratory within the course’s syllabus in combination with the implementation of specific methodologies for product development, learning methods (Active Learning and Blended Learning using Massive Open Online Courses MOOCs) and rapid product realization platforms. Using the concepts proposed it is possible to demonstrate that students can propose innovative and sustainable products, and demonstrate how the learning process could be improved using technological resources applied in the higher educational sector. Finally, examples of innovative S3 products developed at Tecnologico de Monterrey are presented.
    Cluster Analysis of Customer Churn in Telecom Industry

    The research examines the factors that affect customer churn (CC) in the Jordanian telecom industry. A total of 700 surveys were distributed. Cluster analysis revealed three main clusters. Results showed that CC and customer satisfaction (CS) were the key determinants in forming the three clusters. In two clusters, the center values of CC were high, indicating that the customers were loyal and SC was expensive and time- and energy-consuming. Still, the mobile service provider (MSP) should enhance its communication (COM), and value added services (VASs), as well as customer complaint management systems (CCMS). Finally, for the third cluster the center of the CC indicates a poor level of loyalty, which facilitates customers churn to another MSP. The results of this study provide valuable feedback for MSP decision makers regarding approaches to improving their performance and reducing CC.

    The Escalation of Incivility in the Light of Social Constructions that Conceal Inequalities

    The purpose of this article is to understand the dynamics of the increase in incivility through social relations (gender, race, class, sexual orientation, etc.), which hide inequalities in the form of treatment and opportunities within the organizational sphere. For this, we will examine works that address incivility at work, as well as studies that deviate from the mainstream, bringing more obscure organizational facets to light in connection with a critical approach to this issue. Next, some results of a bibliometric study shall be exposed, to analyze contributions connected to the theme and demonstrate gaps for future research. Then, models that facilitate reflection on the dynamics of violence shall be discussed. Finally, a broader concept of incivility in interpersonal relationships in the workplace shall be exposed considering the multiple approaches discussed.

    The Representation of Female Characters by Women Directors in Surveillance Spaces in Turkish Cinema

    The representation of women characters in cinema has been discussed for centuries. In cinema where dominant narrative codes prevail and scopophilic views exist over women characters, passive stereotypes of women are observed in the representation of women characters. In films shot from a woman’s point of view in Turkish Cinema and even in the films outside the main stream in which the stories of women characters are told, the fact that women characters are discussed on the basis of feminist film theories triggers the question: ‘Are feminist films produced in Turkish Cinema?’ The spaces that are used in the representation of women characters are observed to be used as spaces that convert characters into passive subjects on the basis of the space factor in the narrative. The representation of women characters in the possible surveillance spaces integrates the characters and compresses them in these spaces. In this study, narrative analysis was used to investigate women characters representation in the surveillance spaces. For the study framework, firstly a case study films are selected, and in the second level, women characters representations in surveillance spaces are argued by narrative analysis using feminist film theories. Two questions are argued with feminist film theories: ‘Why do especially women directors represent their female characters to viewers by representing them in surveillance spaces?’ and ‘Can this type of presentation contribute to the feminist film practice and become important with regard to feminist film theories?’ The representation of women characters in a passive and observed way in surveillance spaces of the narrative reveals the questioning of also the discourses of films outside of the main stream. As films that produce alternative discourses and reveal different cinematic languages, those outside the main stream are expected to bring other points of view also to the representation of women characters in spaces. These questionings are selected as the baseline and Turkish films such as Watch Tower and Mustang, directed by women, were examined. This examination paves the way for discussions regarding the women characters in surveillance spaces. Outcomes can be argued from the viewpoint of representation in the genre by feminist film theories. In the context of feminist film theories and feminist film practice, alternatives should be found that can corporally reveal the existence of women in both the representation of women characters in spaces and in the usage of the space factor.

    Developing Measurement Model of Interpersonal Skills of Youth

    Although it is known that interpersonal skills are essential for personal development, the debate however continues as to how to measure those skills, especially in youths. This study was conducted to develop a measurement model of interpersonal skills by suggesting three construct namely personal, skills and relationship; six function namely self, perception, listening, conversation, emotion and conflict management; and 30 behaviours as indicators. This cross-sectional survey by questionnaires was applied in east side of peninsula of Malaysia for 150 respondents, and analyzed by structural equation modelling (SEM) by AMOS. The suggested constructs, functions and indicators were consider accepted as measurement elements by observing on regression weight for standard loading, average variance extracted (AVE) for convergent validity, square root of AVE for discriminant validity, composite reliability (CR), and at least three fit indexes for model fitness. Finally, a measurement model of interpersonal skill for youth was successfully developed.

    Vietnamese Indigenous Healing’s Implication for Vietnamese Women Counseling in Korea

    As the second largest group among international marriages in Korea, Vietnamese married immigrant women have been exposed to psychological crisis like divorce and family violence. The purpose of this study is to understand how to counsel those women from the perspective of indigenous healing as their own psychological problem-solving way. To this end, this study reviewed Vietnamese cultural literatures on their mentality as well as Vietnamese medical literatures on indigenous healing. The research results are as follows: First, cultural foundations that have formed Vietnamese mentality are Confucian value system, reserved communication, and religious pluralism. These cultural backgrounds play an important role in understanding their own therapeutic tradition. Second, Vietnamese indigenous healing considers cause of mental disease as a collapse of balance between mind and body and environment. Thus, indigenous treatment deals with psychological problems through a recovery of the balance from the holistic perspective. In fact, indigenous healing has been actively practiced in everyday place as well as hospital until today. The implications of Vietnamese indigenous healing for multicultural counseling in Korea are as follows: First, Korean counselors need to interactively understand their own assumptions on indigenous healing as well as counselees’ own assumptions. Second, a variety of psychological intervention strategies can be drawn from Vietnamese indigenous healing. Third, indigenous healing needs to be integrated with modern techniques of counseling and psychotherapy, as both treatments are not mutually exclusive but complementary.

    Teaching College Classes with Virtual Reality

    Recent advances in virtual reality (VR) technologies have made it possible for students to experience a virtual on-the-scene or virtual in-person observation of an educational event. In an experimental class, the author uses VR, particularly 360° videos, to virtually engage students in an event, through a wide spectrum of educational resources, such s a virtual “bystander.” Students were able to observe the event as if they were physically on site, although they could not intervene with the scene. The author will describe the adopted equipment, specification, and cost of building them as well as the quality of VR. The author will discuss (a) feasibility, effectiveness, and efficiency of using VR as a supplemental technology to teach college students and criteria and methodologies used by the authors to evaluate them; (b) barriers and issues of technological implementation; and (c) pedagogical practices learned through this experiment. The author also attempts to explore (a) how VR could provide an interactive virtual in-person learning experience; (b) how VR can possibly change traditional college education and online education; (c) how educators and balance six critical factors: cost, time, technology, quality, result, and content.

    Urban Accessibility of Historical Cities: The Venetian Case Study

    The preservation of historical Italian heritage, at the urban and architectural scale, has to consider restrictions and requirements connected with conservation issues and usability needs, which are often at odds with historical heritage preservation. Recent decades have been marked by the search for increased accessibility not only of public and private buildings, but to the whole historical city, also for people with disability. Moreover, in the last years the concepts of Smart City and Healthy City seek to improve accessibility both in terms of mobility (independent or assisted) and fruition of goods and services, also for historical cities. The principles of Inclusive Design have introduced new criteria for the improvement of public urban space, between current regulations and best practices. Moreover, they have contributed to transforming “special needs” into an opportunity of social innovation. These considerations find a field of research and analysis in the historical city of Venice, which is at the same time a site of UNESCO world heritage, a mass tourism destination bringing in visitors from all over the world and a city inhabited by an aging population. Due to its conformation, Venetian urban fabric is only partially accessible: about four thousand bridges divide thousands of islands, making it almost impossible to move independently. These urban characteristics and difficulties were the base, in the last 20 years, for several researches, experimentations and solutions with the aim of eliminating architectural barriers, in particular for the usability of bridges. The Venetian Municipality with the EBA Office and some external consultants realized several devices (e.g. the “stepped ramp” and the new accessible ramps for the Venice Marathon) that should determine an innovation for the city, passing from the use of mechanical replicable devices to specific architectural projects in order to guarantee autonomy in use. This paper intends to present the state-of-the-art in bridges accessibility, through an analysis based on Inclusive Design principles and on the current national and regional regulation. The purpose is to evaluate some possible strategies that could improve performances, between limits and possibilities of interventions. The aim of the research is to lay the foundations for the development of a strategic program for the City of Venice that could successfully bring together both conservation and improvement requirements.

    Proposing Problem-Based Learning as an Effective Pedagogical Technique for Social Work Education

    Social work education is competency based in nature. There is an expectation that graduates of social work programs throughout the world are to be prepared to practice at a level of competence, which is beneficial to both the well-being of individuals and community. Experiential learning is one way to prepare students for competent practice. The use of Problem-Based Learning (PBL) is a form experiential education that has been successful in a number of disciplines to bridge the gap between the theoretical concepts in the classroom to the real world. PBL aligns with the constructivist theoretical approach to learning, which emphasizes the integration of new knowledge with the beliefs students already hold. In addition, the basic tenants of PBL correspond well with the practice behaviors associated with social work practice including multi-disciplinary collaboration and critical thinking. This paper makes an argument for utilizing PBL in social work education.