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Search Results: 1 - 10 of 6670 matches for " Alex MacGregor "
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Exploratory evaluation of audio email technology in formative assessment feedback
George Macgregor,Alex Spiers,Chris Taylor
Research in Learning Technology , 2011, DOI: 10.3402/rlt.v19i1.17119
Abstract: Formative assessment generates feedback on students' performance, thereby accelerating and improving student learning. Anecdotal evidence gathered by a number of evaluations has hypothesised that audio feedback may be capable of enhancing student learning more than other approaches. In this paper we report on the preliminary findings of a quasi-experimental study employing qualitative techniques for triangulation, conducted to evaluate the efficacy of formative audio feedback on student learning. We focus on the delivery of ‘voice emails' to undergraduate students (n = 24) and evaluate the efficacy of such feedback in formative assessment and ergo students' learning, as well as achieving a better understanding of students' feedback behaviour post-delivery. The results indicate that audio feedback better conforms to existing models of ‘quality' formative feedback, can enhance the student learning experience and can be more efficient in feedback delivery. Despite this, and high levels of feedback re-use by student participants, the audio treatment group underperformed in learning tasks when compared with the control group. Differences between the groups were not statistically significant and analyses of individual and mean learning gains across the treatment group provide little indication of improvements in learning.
Can choices between alternative hip prostheses be evidence based? a review of the economic evaluation literature
Charlotte Davies, Paula Lorgelly, Ian Shemilt, Miranda Mugford, Keith Tucker, Alex MacGregor
Cost Effectiveness and Resource Allocation , 2010, DOI: 10.1186/1478-7547-8-20
Abstract: We searched nine medical and economics electronic databases. 3,270 studies were initially identified, 17 studies were included in the review. Studies were critically appraised using three separate guidelines.Several methodological problems were identified including a lack of observed long term prosthesis survival data, limited up-to-date and UK based evidence and exclusion of patient and societal perspectives.More clinical trials including long term follow-up and economic evaluation are needed. These should compare the cost-effectiveness of different prostheses with longer-term follow-up and including a wider perspective.About 8 million people in the UK have osteoarthritis (OA) [1]. Patients typically experience chronic pain and loss of physical function with an impact on society of lost productivity and increased burden on domiciliary/informal care. For those with end stage hip disease, total hip replacement (THR) surgery offers the only effective treatment. Over 70,000 THR operations were carried out in England and Wales in 2008/9 [2], with the number almost doubling in the last decade. As the population continues to age demand for this type of surgery will increase, with significant implications for the health system in terms of the impact on healthcare budgets and service utilisation. Inevitably, healthcare decision makers will need to make decisions that aim to ensure an efficient allocation of resources to THR surgeries, including the availability, timing and configuration of such interventions.The total cost of joint replacement surgery to the National Health Service (NHS), UK in 2000 was approximately £140 million [3], (£172 million in 2008 prices) [4], with the direct hospital costs of each procedure ranging from £488 to £9,905, mean of £4,788 [3](2008 prices). Predicted cost savings of total joint replacement surgery (relative to no surgery) are the reduced costs of arthritis treatment, medication and community care. In this paper we focus on total hip rep
A common genetic factor underlies hypertension and other cardiovascular disorders
Frances MK Williams, Lynn F Cherkas, Tim D Spector, Alex J MacGregor
BMC Cardiovascular Disorders , 2004, DOI: 10.1186/1471-2261-4-20
Abstract: We investigated the association between hypertension, migraine, Raynaud's phenomenon and coronary artery disease in twins from a national register. Phenotype status was determined using a questionnaire and the genetic and environmental association between phenotypes was estimated through variance components analysis.Responses were obtained from 2,204 individuals comprising 525 monozygotic and 577 dizygotic pairs. There was a significant genetic contribution to all four traits with heritabilities ranging from 0.34 to 0.64. Multivariate model-fitting demonstrated that a single common genetic factor underlies the four conditions.We have confirmed an association between hypertension, migraine, Raynaud's phenomenon and coronary artery disease, and shown that a single genetic factor underlies them. The demonstration of a shared genetic factor explains the association between them and adds weight to the theory of an inherited predisposition to vasospasm.A number of conditions characterised by blood vessel occlusion and/or vascular spasm have been found to be associated in both clinical and epidemiological studies. These include hypertension (HPT), Raynaud's phenomenon (RP), migraine (MIG) and coronary artery disease (CAD) [1-5]. Whether these associations are the consequences of a shared environmental risk factor or represent an underlying propensity to develop the conditions through a common biological mechanism remains controversial. The exploration of the genetic and environmental relationships underlying these conditions is one approach to resolving the biological basis for the association. We have examined the association between these phenotypes in a classical twin study conducted in a large sample. This approach allows us to assess whether the association between HPT, RP, MIG and CAD is explained by a common genetic or environmental aetiology.Subjects for this study were twins enlisted with the St Thomas' UK Adult Twin Registry [6]. These monozygotic (MZ) and dizygo
An evaluation of rheumatology practitioner outreach clinics: a qualitative study
Asmaa Abdelhamid, Janice Mooney, Andrew A Walker, Garry Barton, Alex J MacGregor, David GI Scott, Richard A Watts
BMC Health Services Research , 2012, DOI: 10.1186/1472-6963-12-119
Abstract: Using a qualitative design, semi-structured interviews were conducted with GPs, practice nurses, hospital doctors and RPs, from one hospital and seven PC practices in Norfolk, to elicit their opinions of the service. The interviews were analysed using thematic analysis.All participants agreed the service was supportive and valuable providing high quality personalised care, disease management, social, and educational support. Advantages identified included convenience, continuity of care and proximity of services to home. RPs helped bridge the communication gap between PC and SC. Some participants suggested having a doctor alongside RPs. The service was considered to be cost effective for patients but there was uncertainty about cost effectiveness for service providers. Few disadvantages were identified the most recurring being the lack of other onsite services when needed. It was noted that more services could be provided by RPs such as prescribing and joint injections as well as playing a more active role in knowledge transfer to PC.Professionals involved in the care of RA patients recognised the valuable role of the RP outreach clinics. This service can be further developed in rheumatology and the example can be replicated for other chronic conditions.
Dietary garlic and hip osteoarthritis: evidence of a protective effect and putative mechanism of action
Frances MK Williams, Jane Skinner, Tim D Spector, Aedin Cassidy, Ian M Clark, Rose M Davidson, Alex J MacGregor
BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders , 2010, DOI: 10.1186/1471-2474-11-280
Abstract: Cross-sectional study conducted in a large population-based volunteer cohort of twins. Food intake was evaluated using the Food Frequency Questionnaire; OA was determined using plain radiographs. Analyses were adjusted for age, BMI and physical activity. Subsequent in vitro studies examined the effects of allium-derived compounds on the expression of matrix-degrading proteases in SW1353 chondrosarcoma cells.Data were available, depending on phenotype, for 654-1082 of 1086 female twins (median age 58.9 years; range 46-77). Trends in dietary analysis revealed a specific pattern of dietary intake, that high in fruit and vegetables, showed an inverse association with hip OA (p = 0.022). Consumption of 'non-citrus fruit' (p = 0.015) and 'alliums' (p = 0.029) had the strongest protective effect. Alliums contain diallyl disulphide which was shown to abrogate cytokine-induced matrix metalloproteinase expression.Studies of diet are notorious for their confounding by lifestyle effects. While taking account of BMI, the data show an independent effect of a diet high in fruit and vegetables, suggesting it to be protective against radiographic hip OA. Furthermore, diallyl disulphide, a compound found in garlic and other alliums, represses the expression of matrix-degrading proteases in chondrocyte-like cells, providing a potential mechanism of action.Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common disabling joint condition affecting elderly adults and it also has a significant impact on adults of working age. The aetiology remains unclear: genetic factors account for approximately half the variation in expression of OA and several predisposing genetic variants have been discovered [1]. Of the environmental risk factors that have been identified, an influence of body mass index (BMI) is now well established [2], particularly at the knee. The precise mechanism of action of BMI - via mechanical factors such as malalignment [3,4] or hormonally through leptin [5] or adiponectin [6] - and of ot
Urban regeneration as a public health intervention
Casimir MacGregor
Journal of Social Intervention : Theory and Practice , 2010,
Abstract: Urban regeneration as a public health intervention Urban design and planning are essential elements in how we navigate the social world. This is because urban environments typically constructed for social and cultural reasons, can create health inequalities within the urban landscape. Urban regeneration is the process of renewal or redevelopment of the social and built environment through policies, programmes and projects aimed at urban areas which have experienced multiple disadvantage. This article argues that urban regeneration is an important publichealth intervention and that by changing the urban physical, social and economic environment this can facilitate health development for disadvantaged communities. Stedelijke vernieuwing als interventie in de volksgezondheid Ruimtelijke ordening en stedelijke vernieuwing vormen belangrijke interventiemechanismen in sociale kwesties. Het stedelijk landschap krijgt immers mede vorm op grond van sociale en culturele overwegingen en be nvloedt daarmee het sociaal leven. Hierdoor kunnen gezondheidsverschillen en ongelijkheden ontstaan. In dit artikel wordt bijgevolg betoogd dat stedelijke vernieuwing een belangrijke interventie in de volksgezondheid kan vormen. Stedelijke vernieuwing is gedefinieerd als het vernieuwingsproces dat in gang wordt gezet door de herontwikkeling van de gebouwde omgeving (in de breedste zin van het woord: sociaal, economisch, cultureel en fysiek). Het veranderen van deze fysieke, sociale en economische omgeving kan een positieve invloed hebben op de gezondheid van burgers in een achterstandssituatie, en kan een kader zijn voor volksgezondheidbeleid.
Framing rights and responsibilities: accounts of women with a history of AIDS activism
MacGregor Hayley,Mills Elizabeth
BMC International Health and Human Rights , 2011, DOI: 10.1186/1472-698x-11-s3-s7
Abstract: Background In South Africa, policy with respect to HIV/AIDS has had a strong rights-based framing in line with international trends and in keeping with the constitutional overhaul in the post-Apartheid era. There have also been considerable advances since 1994 towards legal enshrinement of sexual and reproductive health rights and in the provision of related services. Since HIV in this setting has heavily affected women of reproductive age, there has been discussion about the particular needs of this subgroup, especially in the context of service integration. This paper is concerned with the way in which HIV positive women conceptualise these rights and whether they wish and are able to actualise them in their daily lives. Methods In 2003 a group of women involved with the Treatment Action Campaign and Medicines Sans Frontières participated in an initiative to ‘map’ their bodies as affected by the virus. A book containing the maps and narratives was published and used as a political tool to pressure the government of the day to roll out antiretroviral therapy (ART) to the population. In 2008, the authors coordinated an initiative that involved conducting follow-up in-depth interviews in which five of these women reflected on those body maps and on how their lives had changed in the intervening five years since gaining the right to treatment through the public sector. Results Drawing upon this qualitative data and published sources, these new accounts are analysed in order to reflect the perspectives of these women living with chronic HIV with respect to their sexual relations and fertility desires. The paper reveals difficulties faced by these women in negotiating sexual relationships and disclosure of their HIV positive status. It focuses on how they perceive relative responsibilities in terms of taking preventative measures in sexual encounters. Women adopt tactics within a context characterised by various inequalities in order to ‘make do’, such as by remaining silent about their status. Concerns about childbearing can be addressed by information and support from a health care worker. Conclusions Women’s experience of HIV as a chronic illness and the need to adhere to ART, is linked to the way in which the language of responsibility can come to counter-balance a language of rights in treatment programmes.
The Role of Gender in the Perception of barriers to E-commerce Adoption in SMEs: An Australian Study
Robert MacGregor,Lejla Vrazalic
Communications of the IBIMA , 2008,
Abstract: The association between e-commerce barriers and gender has not been explored in-depth, even though it has implications for the adoption of this technology. This paper aims to add insight into how male and female SME owners/managers perceive different e-commerce barriers. The findings of a survey of 207 SMEs in Australia are presented, and show that females perceive technical issues to be a more important barrier than organisational issues. By contrast, male SME owners/managers are more concerned with the suitability and fit of e-commerce in the organisation, implying the need for a different focus in e-commerce initiatives. Additional findings show a greater differentiation of barriers within male owned/managed SMEs, which suggests the need for more customised e-commerce adoption program in these organisations.
A Novel Solid State Non-Dispersive Infrared CO2 Gas Sensor Compatible with Wireless and Portable Deployment
Desmond Gibson,Calum MacGregor
Sensors , 2013, DOI: 10.3390/s130607079
Abstract: This paper describes development of a novel mid-infrared light emitting diode (LED) and photodiode (PD) light source/detector combination and use within a non-dispersive infrared (NDIR) carbon dioxide gas sensor. The LED/PD based NDIR sensor provides fast stabilisation time (time required to turn on the sensor from cold, warm up, take and report a measurement, and power down again ≈1 second), longevity (>15 years), low power consumption and low cost. Described performance is compatible with “fit and forget” wireless deployed sensors in applications such as indoor air quality monitoring/control & energy conservation in buildings, transport systems, horticultural greenhouses and portable deployment for safety, industrial and medical applications. Fast stabilisation time, low intrinsic power consumption and cycled operation offer typical energy consumption per measurement of mJ’s, providing extended operation using battery and/or energy harvesting strategies (measurement interval of ≈ 2 minutes provides >10 years operation from one AA battery). Specific performance data is provided in relation to measurement accuracy and noise, temperature performance, cross sensitivity, measurement range (two pathlength variants are described covering ambient through to 100% gas concentration), comparison with NDIR utilizing thermal source/pyroelectric light source/detector combination and compatibility with energy harvesting. Semiconductor based LED/PD processing together with injection moulded reflective optics and simple assembly provide a route to low cost high volume manufacturing.
The “District Heating Wall”: A Synergistic Approach to Achieve Affordable Carbon Emission Reductions in Old Terraced Houses  [PDF]
Claire Frost, Fan Wang, Paul Woods, Robert MacGregor
Low Carbon Economy (LCE) , 2012, DOI: 10.4236/lce.2012.323016
Abstract: One effective method to help the UK achieve GHG emission reduction targets is to reduce and decarbonise the heat demand of solid-walled terraced houses, as there are over 2.5 million such buildings making up a significant proportion of the whole building stock. Currently measures are achieved separately: the heat demand could be reduced by application of External Wall Insulation (EWI) or decarbonised through low carbon heat supplied by District Heating Networks (DHN). However, when installed individually, both these technologies face economic cost barriers. This study presents a novel solution that combines district heating pipes into external wall insulation—the District Heating Wall (DHWall) —and provides a systematic and quantitative assessment on its effects on the heating loads and its associated carbon emissions and capital costs. First a dynamic thermal model was developed to predict the heat demand of a case study terraced house with and without EWI. Two district heating networks were then sized to transport the required heat to the house-conventional and DHWall. The DHWall was compared to existing options and initial design parameters cal- culated. The study found application of EWI reduced space heating demand by 14%. The DHWall could reduce mains pipe inside diameter by 47% and reduce network pipe lengths by 20% and require no civils cost. Together these factors reduced DH capital costs by 76%. For one terraced house, the DHWall saved 34 tonnes of carbon over a 20year period compared to 8tonnes saved by EWI alone. Such savings were achieved at 39% of the cost/tonne. The mains pipe of the DHWall was calculated to have an inside diameter of 32.6 mm. The minimum insulation thickness required for solid walls to reach U-values of 0.3 W/m2K was calculated to be 120 mm of mineral wool or 65 mm of phenolic foam. The study concludes the DHWall has potential to contribute to GHG emission reductions by increasing market penetration of DH and EWI and should be investigated further.
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