• Operationalising domain 4: additional care for women and newborn infants with complications

      Madeley, Anna; University of Bedfordshire (All4Holdings Ltd, 2020-12-31)
      In this ninth article of The Practising Midwife’s education series, Domain 4 from the new Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) standards for proficiency is discussed. Domain 4 emphasises the midwife’s role as a coordinator of women and neonate’s care where additional care may be required. Highlighting curriculum changes at the University of Bedfordshire, Anna Madeley provides insights to how this domain has been implemented.
    • Operationalizing physical literacy: special issue editorial

      Durden-Myers, Elizabeth; Whitehead, Margaret; Liverpool John Moores University; University of Bedfordshire (Human Kinetics Publishers Inc., 2018-12-31)
      Physical literacy has been described as a "longed for concept" and has in turn gained much interest worldwide. This interest has also given rise for calls for physical literacy to be operationalized, providing clarity and guidance on developing physical literacy informed practice. Operationalizing physical literacy is crucial in moving the concept forward by providing "substance to the claims made by (physical literacy) advocates." This special issue aims to respond to calls for research to "unpack" physical literacy across a number of areas in pursuit of operationalizing physical literacy in practice. Nine articles are included within this special issue.
    • Operations capability, productivity and business performance: the moderating effect of environmental dynamism

      Yu, Wantao; Ramanathan, Ramakrishnan; Wang, Xingyu; Yang, Jeihui (Emerald, 2017-06-27)
      Purpose – The purpose of this study is to investigate the relationships between operations capability, productivity and business performance in the context of environmental dynamism. Design/methodology/approach – A proposed conceptual framework grounded in the resourcebased view (RBV) and dynamic capability view (DCV) is analysed using archival data from 193 automakers in the UK. Findings – The results show that operations capability, as an important dynamic capability, has a significant positive effect on productivity, which in turn leads to improved business performance. The results also suggest that productivity fully mediates the relationship between operations capability and business performance, and that environmental dynamism significantly moderates the relationship between operations capability and productivity. Practical implications – The research findings provide practical insights that will help managers develop operations capability to gain greater productivity and business performance in a dynamic environment.
    • Opportunities for peer safeguarding intervention: a briefing following fieldwork with Safer London

      Latimer, Katie; Adams Elias, Carly; Firmin, Carlene Emma; University of Bedfordshire (University of Bedfordshire, 2020-09-30)
      Young people’s peer relationships are significant to their wellbeing and safety. Peers can be a source of both risk and protection, sometimes simultaneously. This briefing shares learning from a research project that explored the potential for peer interventions within Safer London, a voluntary sector support service for young Londoners affected by exploitation or violence. It is co-authored by Katie Latimer from the Contextual Safeguarding Research Project at the University of Bedfordshire and Carly Adams Elias, Organisational Lead for Exploitation at Safer London. The authors reflect the principal learning from the original study, which took place between August and December 2019 and was presented in an internal report to Safer London in January 2020. This briefing also shares additional detailed examples of work within Safer London as the organisation continues to develop safeguarding interventions that work with the significant social relationships in young people’s lives. The following findings are presented below: 1. Peer interventions take various forms: safeguarding work with peers can involve group work with connected young people, but this is not always the case. 2. Peer interventions are most appropriately used alongside other practice that understands and intervenes with the social conditions of abuse, including interventions with other extra-familial contexts. 3. Peer relationships can be protective and, for this reason, relevant to safeguarding 4. Practitioners can work with peer relationships without necessarily identifying all the connected young people concerned
    • Opposing tensions of local and international standards for EAP writing programmes: who are we assessing for?

      Bruce, Emma; Hamp-Lyons, Liz; City University of Hong Kong; University of Bedfordshire (Elsevier Ltd, 2015-04-24)
      In response to recent curriculum changes in secondary schools in Hong Kong including the implementation of the 3-3-4 education structure, with one year less at high school and one year more at university and the introduction of a new school leavers' exam, the Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education (HKDSE), universities in the territory have revisited their English language curriculums. At City University a new EAP curriculum and assessment framework was developed to fit the re-defined needs of the new cohort of students.In this paper we describe the development and benchmarking process of a scoring instrument for EAP writing assessment at City University. We discuss the opposing tensions of local (HKDSE) and international (CEFR and IELTS) standards, the problems of aligning EAP needs-based domain scales and standards with the CEFR and the issues associated with attempting to fulfil the institutional expectation that the EAP programme would raise students' scores by a whole CEFR scale step. Finally, we consider the political tensions created by the use of external, even international, reference points for specific levels of writing performance from all our students and suggest the benefits of a specific, locally-designed, fit-for-purpose tool over one aligned with universal standards.
    • Opposing tensions of local and international standards for EAP writing: programmes: who are we assessing for?

      Bruce, Emma Louise; Hamp-Lyons, Liz; City University of Hong Kong; University of Bedfordshire (Elsevier, 2015-04-24)
      In response to recent curriculum changes in secondary schools in Hong Kong including the implementation of the 3e3e4 education structure, with one year less at high school and one year more at university and the introduction of a new school leavers' exam, the Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education (HKDSE), universities in the territory have revisited their English language curriculums. At City University a new EAP curriculum and assessment framework was developed to fit the re-defined needs of the new cohort of students. In this paper we describe the development and benchmarking process of a scoring instrument for EAP writing assessment at City University. We discuss the opposing tensions of local (HKDSE) and international (CEFR and IELTS) standards, the problems of aligning EAP needs-based domain scales and standards with the CEFR and the issues associated with attempting to fulfil the institutional expectation that the EAP programme would raise students' scores by a whole CEFR scale step. Finally, we consider the political tensions created by the use of external, even international, reference points for specific levels of writing performance from all our students and suggest the benefits of a specific, locallydesigned, fit-for-purpose tool over one aligned with universal standards.
    • Optical based noninvasive glucose monitoring sensor prototype

      Haxha, Shyqyri; Jhoja, Jaspreet; University of Bedfordshire (IEEE, 2016-12-13)
      Diabetes mellitus claims millions of lives every year. It affects the body in various ways by leading to many serious illnesses and premature mortality. Heart and kidney diseases, which are caused by diabetes, are increasing at an alarming rate. In this paper, we report a study of a noninvasive measurement technique to determine the glucose levels in the human body. Current existing methods to quantify the glucose level in the blood are predominantly invasive that involve taking the blood samples using finger pricking. In this paper, we report a spectroscopy-based noninvasive glucose monitoring system to measure glucose concentration. Near-infrared transmission spectroscopy is used and in vitro experiments are conducted, as well as in vivo. Our experimental study confirms a correlation between the sensor output voltage and glucose concentration levels. We report a low-cost prototype of spectroscopy-based noninvasive glucose monitoring system that demonstrates promising results in vitro and establishes a relationship between the optical signals and the changing levels of blood–glucose concentration.
    • Optical-based sensor prototype for continuous monitoring of the blood pressure

      Cohen, Zachary Joel Valentino; Haxha, Shyqyri; University of Bedfordshire (IEEE Sensors Journal, 2017-07-01)
      In this paper, we report a prototype ring sensor device for continuous measurement of blood pressure with the use of our, previously developed, heart rate monitoring ring device. An experiment is described where the heart rate device provides the voltage output of the heart using the transmission photoplethysmography (PPG) method and predicts the blood pressure’s value to ±5% of its true value. We report a novel potential non-invasive, low cost, continuous heart rate and blood pressure monitoring device that uses transmission PPG instead of the traditional cuff method to observe the changes in volume of the pressure through the arteries of the finger. The continuous samples are averaged out constantly. We employed the PPG technique to optically determine the blood volume changes in the arteries of the finger. A Pearson’s product moment correlation coefficient proved an r value of 0.86 showing strong linear correlation between the average voltage of the heart rate and the corresponding blood pressure. The proposed blood pressure ring sensor device was tested and benchmarked (against Nonin 2120 benchmark blood pressure device) four participants for a continuous period of four hours, where the average Mean Arterial Pressure (MAP) (using Nonin 2120) for four hours was at 98.92mmHg and the average predicted MAP was at 92.8mmHg, which demonstrates an accuracy of 93.8%.The average real systolic pressure (using Nonin 2120) was at 144.25mmHg and the predicted average systolic pressure was at 132.77mmHg which shows an accuracy of 92%. The average real diastolic pressure (using Nonin 2120) was at 76.25mmHg and the predicted diastolic pressure was 72.7mmHg, showing an accuracy of 95.5%. 
    • Optimisation of dispersion compensating in a long-haul fibre for RF transmission of up to 100Gbit/s by using RZ and NRZ formats

      Paloi, Fadil; Mirza, Taimur; Haxha, Shyqyri; University of Bedfordshire (Elsevier, 2016-12-02)
      With the recent data rate increase it is very challenging to build a fibre optic network that would enable a high data rate transmission over a long haul distance. The signal suffers large degradation over a certain distance due to distortion by the nonlinear effects of the optical fibres. In particular, transmission of high data rates over existing fibre optic systems, while keeping the cost low, avoiding an increase of the system’s complexity and the usage of expensive devices, would be a very challenging task. In this paper, we address this problem by increasing the transmission distance in the fibre optic links for up to 2500km. We have used Standard Single Mode Fibre (SSMF) and Dispersion Compensation Fibre (DCF), where DCF is used as a loss compensator in Radio-Over-Fibre (RoF) systems. A mixture combination of the pre, post and symmetrical fibre compensation schemes were developed to overcome the dispersion in the fibre. We have found that in order to achieve high RF over fibre optic system performance for high data rates and long transmission, there is a requirement to upgrade the optical configuration scheme in a proportional way, by raising the length of the fibre span, compensation span and amplification. We have reported optimised RF over fibre configuration schemes that would have a great impact on reducing the cost, reducing the system’s complexity and avoiding usage of expensive devices, in order to achieve high data rate transmission over existing fibre optic systems.
    • Optimising online review inspired product attribute classification using the self-learning particle swarm-based Bayesian learning approach

      Maiyar, Lohithaksha M.; Cho, SangJe; Tiwari, Manoj Kumar; Thoben, Klaus-Dieter; Kiritsis, Dimitris (Taylor and Francis Ltd., 2018-10-24)
      Bowing to the burgeoning needs of online consumers, exploitation of social media content for extrapolating buyer-centric information is gaining increasing attention of researchers and practitioners from service science, data analytics, machine learning and associated domains. The current paper aims to identify the structural relationship between product attributes and subsequently prioritise customer preferences with respect to these attributes while exploiting textual social media data derived from fashion blogs in Germany. A Bayesian Network Structure Learning model with the K2score maximisation objective is formulated and solved. A self-tailored metaheuristic approach that combines self-learning particle swarm optimisation (SLPSO) with the K2 algorithm (SLPSOK2) is employed to decipher the highest scored structures. The proposed approach is implemented on small, medium and large size instances consisting of 9 fashion attributes and 18 problem sets. The results obtained by SLPSOK2 are compared with the particle swarm optimisation/K2score, Genetic Algorithm/K2 score and ant colony optimisation/K2 score. Results verify that SLPSOK2 outperforms its hybrid counterparts for the tested cases in terms of computational time and solution quality. Furthermore, the study reveals that psychological satisfaction, historical revival, seasonal information and facts and figure-based reviews are major components of information in fashion blogs that influence the customers.
    • Optimising the release rate of naproxen liqui-pellet: a new technology for emerging novel oral dosage form

      Lam, Matthew; Ghafourian, Taravat; Nokhodchi, Ali; (Springer, 2019-07-08)
      Liqui-pellet is a new dosage form stemming from pelletisation technology and concept from liquisolid technology. In spite of liqui-pellet overcoming a major hurdle in liquisolid technology through achieving excellent flow property with high liquid load factor, the formulation requires to be optimised in order to improve drug release rate. Liqui-pellets of naproxen containing Tween 80, Primojel, Avicel and Aerosil were extruded and spheronised. Flowability test confirmed that all liqui-pellet formulations have excellent-good flow property (Carr’s index between 3.9–11.17%), including liqui-pellets with a high liquid load factor of 1.52, where 38% of the total mass is co-solvent. This shows a relatively high liquid load factor can be achieved in liqui-pellet without compromising the flowability, which is one of the key novelty of this work. It was found that the improved drug release rate was due to the remarkably improved disintegration of the supposedly non-disintegrating microcrystalline-based pellet; the optimised liqui-pellet seems to explode into fragments in the dissolution medium. At pH 1.2, the optimised formulation had ~ 10% more drug release than non-optimised formulation after 2 h, and at pH 7.4, the drug release of the optimised pellet was nearing 100% at ~ 15 min, whereas the none-optimised pellet only achieved ~ 79% drug release after 2 h. DSC and XRPD indicated an increase in the dissolution rate could be due to molecularly dispersion of naproxen in the pellets. Overall results showed that liqui-pellet exhibited an enhanced drug release and the capacity for high liquid load factor whilst maintaining excellent flowability, rendering it a potentially commercially feasible drug delivery system.
    • Optimization analysis and implementation of online wisdom teaching mode in cloud classroom based on data mining and processing

      Gao, Jing; Yue, Xiao-Guang; Hao, Lulu; Crabbe, M. James C.; Manta, Otilia; Duarte, Nelson (International Journal of Emerging Technologies in Learning., 2021-01-16)
      The rapid development of Internet technology and information technology is rapidly changing the way people think, recognize, live, work and learn. In the context of Internet + education, the emerging learning form of a cloud classroom has emerged. Cloud classroom refers to the process in which learners use the network as a way to obtain learning objectives and learning resources, communicate with teachers and other learners through the network, and build their own knowledge structure. Because it breaks the boundaries of time and space, it has the characteristics of freedom, high efficiency and extensiveness, and is quickly accepted by learners of different ages and occupations. The traditional cloud classroom teaching mode has no personalized recommendation module and cannot solve an information overload problem. Therefore, this paper proposes a cloud classroom online teaching system under the personalized recommendation system. The system adopts a collaborative filtering recommendation algorithm, which helps to mine the potential preferences of users and thus complete more accurate recommendations. It not only highlights the core position of personalized curriculum recommendation in the field of online education, but also makes the cloud classroom online teaching mode more intelligent and meets the needs of intelligent teaching.
    • Optimization of machining parameters for end milling of Inconel 718 super alloy using Taguchi based grey relational analysis

      Maiyar, Lohithaksha M.; Ramanujam, R.; Venkatesan, K.; Jerald, J.; VIT University; National Institute of Technology, India (Elsevier Ltd, 2013-11-13)
      This study investigated the parameter optimization of end milling operation for Inconel 718 super alloy with multi-response criteria based on the taguchi orthogonal array with the grey relational analysis. Nine experimental runs based on an L9 orthogonal array of Taguchi method were performed. Cutting speed, feed rate and depth of cut are optimized with considerations of multiple performance characteristics namely surface roughness and material removal rate. A grey relational grade obtained from the grey relational analysis is used to solve the end milling process with the multiple performance characteristics. Additionally, the analysis of variance (ANOVA) is also applied to identify the most significant factor. Finally, confirmation tests were performed to make a comparison between the experimental results and developed model. Experimental results have shown that machining performance in the end milling process can be improved effectively through this approach.
    • Optimization of real-time transmission reliability on wireless industrial automation networks

      Karimireddy, Thanmayee; Zhang, Sijing; University of Bedfordshire (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc., 2019-07-01)
      Reliable transmission of the control packets is one of the key requirements of deploying an Industrial Wireless Network (IWN) for automation purposes. The use of error-prone wireless channel, transmission of control packets having hard real-time traffic over IWN have made reliable transmission assurance highly challenging. This paper intends in addressing this challenge through reliability optimization of the hard real-time traffic transmitted over IWN. ReliaMAC is a novel scheme that is proposed to support reliable transmission of hard real-time traffic using redundancy bits added to each double MAC frame. Optimization of transmission reliability is used to identify the optimum number of nodes in an IWN that can support reliable transmission of the hard real-time traffic to a maximum extent. Network simulation results revealed the effectiveness of ReliaMAC in improving reliability of hard real-time communication on IWNs.
    • Optimized degradation and inhibition of α-glucosidase activity by gracilaria lemaneiformis polysaccharide and its production in vitro

      Long, Xiaoshan; Hu, Xiao; Zhou, Shaobo; Xiang, Huan; Chen, Shengjun; Li, Laihao; Liu, Shucheng; Yang, Xianqing; Chinese Academy of Fishery Sciences; Jiangsu Ocean University; et al. (MDPI, 2021-12-22)
      Gracilaria lemaneiformis polysaccharide (GLP) exhibits good physiological activities, and it is more beneficial as it is degraded. After its degradation by hydrogen peroxide combined with vitamin C (H2 O2-Vc) and optimized by Box–Behnken Design (BBD), a new product of GLP-HV will be generated. While using GLP as control, two products of GLP-H (H2 O2-treated) and GLP-V (Vc-treated) were also produced. These products chemical characteristics (total sugar content, molecular weight, monosaccharide composition, UV spectrum, morphological structure, and hypolipidemic activity in vitro) were assessed. The results showed that the optimal conditions for H2 O2-Vc degradation were as follows: H2 O2-Vc concentration was 18.7 mM, reaction time was 0.5 h, and reaction temperature was 56◦ C. The total sugar content of GLP and its degradation products (GLP-HV, GLP-H and GLP-V) were more than 97%, and their monosaccharides are mainly glucose and galactose. The SEM analysis demonstrated that H2 O2-Vc made the structure loose and broken. Moreover, GLP, GLP-HV, GLP-H, and GLP-V had significantly inhibition effect on α-glucosidase, and their IC50 value were 3.957, 0.265, 1.651, and 1.923 mg/mL, respectively. GLP-HV had the best inhibition effect on α-glucosidase in a dose-dependent manner, which was the mixed type of competitive and non-competitive. It had a certain quenching effect on fluorescence of α-glucosidase, which may be dynamic quenching.
    • An oral history of health psychology in the UK

      Quinn, Francis; Chater, Angel M.; Morrison, Val (Wiley, 2020-04-20)
      Abstract Purpose An oral history of the development of health psychology in the United Kingdom. Methods Standard oral history methods produced interviews with 53 UK health psychologists, averaging 92 min in length. All interviewees entered the field from the 1970s to the 2000s, representing all four countries in the United Kingdom. A reconstructive mode of analysis, along with the few existing sources, was used to create a narrative of the history of health psychology in the United Kingdom. Audio recordings and transcripts will be archived for use by future researchers. Findings In the 1970s, medical schools in London recruited psychologists to teach, while also conducting pragmatic research on issues in healthcare. At the same time, some clinical psychologists began to work with physical health conditions in general hospitals. Partly influenced by developments in the United States and Europe, an identity of ‘health psychology’ developed and spread to researchers and practitioners doing work in psychology and health. In the 1980s, the field continued to attract researchers, including social psychologists working with health behaviours and outcomes, and clinical psychologists working in health care settings. During this time, it became formalized as a scientific field with the creation of the BPS Health Psychology Section, courses, and journals. In the 1990s, the field moved towards professional practice, which was controversial with other BPS divisions. However, it continued to grow and develop through the 2000s and 2010s. Conclusion Reflections on the development of UK health psychology represent the first historical narrative produced from oral testimony of those who were present at the time.
    • Oral ingestion of bacterially expressed dsrna can silence genes and cause mortality in a highly invasive, tree-killing pest, the emerald ash borer

      Leelesh, Ramya Shanivarsanthe; Rieske, Lynne K.; University of Kentucky; University of Bedfordshire (MDPI, 2020-07-14)
      RNA interference (RNAi) is a naturally occurring process inhibiting gene expression, and recent advances in our understanding of the mechanism have allowed its development as a tool against insect pests. A major challenge for deployment in the field is the development of convenient and efficient methods for production of double stranded RNA (dsRNA). We assessed the potential for deploying bacterially produced dsRNA as a bio-pesticide against an invasive forest pest, the emerald ash borer (EAB). EAB feeds on the cambial tissue of ash trees (Fraxinus spp.), causing rapid death. EAB has killed millions of trees in North America since its discovery in 2002, prompting the need for innovative management strategies. In our study, bacterial expression and synthesis of dsRNA were performed with E. coli strain HT115 using the L4440 expression vector. EAB-specific dsRNAs (shi and hsp) over-expressed in E. coli were toxic to neonate EAB after oral administration, successfully triggering gene silencing and subsequent mortality; however, a non-specific dsRNA control was not included. Our results suggest that ingestion of transformed E. coli expressing dsRNAs can induce an RNAi response in EAB. To our knowledge, this is the first example of an effective RNAi response induced by feeding dsRNA-expressing bacteria in a forest pest.
    • Organ donation as an 'altruistic gift': Incentives and reciprocity in deceased organ donation from a UK Polish migrant perspective

      Sharp, Chloe; Randhawa, Gurch; University of Bedfordshire (Springer, 2014-01-01)
      Background: Incentives and reciprocity have been widely debated within the literature as an alternative to altruism to motivate the public to register and consent to organ donation. This pilot study was the first to examine the views of the UK Polish migrant community toward these issues. Material and Methods: One-to-one and small group interviews were conducted in English and Polish to collect data. The interviews were recorded and transcribed and interviews in Polish were translated into English. All transcripts were coded, codes were grouped by theme and emergent themes were constantly compared to the new data until saturation. Results: Participants were motivated to donate altruistically but would accept reciprocity for organs once consent was given. Payment for organs was viewed as unfavourable but participants would accept contribution toward funeral expenses. Conclusions: Deceased organ donation was viewed as an ‘altruistic gift’. ‘Altruism’ and ‘gift’ are problematic in deceased organ donation and could explain the challenges that arise in the incentives and reciprocity debate. Mauss’s gift exchange theory could frame incentives as forming the ‘obligation to give’ and could encourage registration but could lead to coercion. Reciprocity could benefit families and be viewed as ‘fair’ and a token of gratitude.
    • Organising for emancipation/emancipating organisations?

      Onyx, Jenny; Schwabenland, Christina; Lange, Chris; Nakagawa, Sachiko (Policy Press, 2017-10-04)
    • Organising for women's emancipation: challenges and pitfalls

      Schwabenland, Christina; Lange, Chris; Onyx, Jenny (Deutsches Zentralinstitut für soziale Fragen, 2020-08-31)
      The oppression and devaluing of women is a significant problem all over the. world. Exploring forms of gender oppression as well as different kinds of responses by civil society organisations is at the core of this article. Women have persistently struggled for their rights and emancipation: in social movements, wormen's organisations and by challenging discrimination in organisations employing both women and men. But their success is often limited due to deep-seated cultural patriarchal norms.