• Teenage parents housing and related support needs in Luton

      McMurray, Isabella (University of Bedfordshire, 2008-05)
      This thesis supports burgeoning research in the area of hearing the voice of teenage parents housing and related support needs. In 1999 the UK government set out a target that by the year 2003 all under 18 lone parents to be placed in housing with support. Local housing authorities were instructed to audit the housing provision and needs for young people in their area and to include a strategy for the housing of teenage parents in their housing plans. Locally, Luton's statistics on teenage pregnancy have been higher than the national average for five out of the last seven years. This thesis details the findings of such an audit in the Luton area. Focus groups and individual interviews were undertaken with twenty four teenage mothers or mothers to be, and five fathers, along with thirteen professionals who worked directly or indirectly with teenage parents to discuss young parents' housing and support needs. Using thematic analysis a predominant theme found was the lack of housing choice for teenage parents in Luton. In general participants preferred an independent model of accommodation in a safe environment with floating support. Results highlighted that many participants, irrespective of contact with the Luton mother and baby hostel, had negative perceptions of this type of accommodation. Narratives were also predicated on issues relating to safety, the permanency of accommodation, housing allocations and support networks. Support was viewed in a positive light. However, it was clear Education was not the priority for teenage parents at this stage of their lives, which is in contrast to UK government's current rhetoric on the importance of education for this group of people. The distinctive focus of this dissertation is to expand both the local and national understanding of teenage parents housing needs.
    • Terror and the teen: ‘Slated’ and young adult dystopian fiction

      Terry, Teresa Ann (University of Bedfordshire, 2012-10)
      This Masters of Arts thesis comprises a novel, Slated, and contextualizing thesis. Slated, a young adult dystopian novel, is Kyla’s story: a sixteen-year-old girl who has been Slated, her memory wiped as punishment for crimes she cannot remember. It is set in a future England, a society where underage criminals and terrorists are given a so-called second chance with Slating, a new life and family. The thesis considers the writing process of Slated in the context of terrorism and cultural trauma, and the use of creative writing in translating trauma. The definition of terrorism and whether it includes freedom fighters is considered, both in international law and its treatment in dystopian young adult fiction, and the conclusion reached that whether terrorists are considered to be freedom fighters is largely a matter of perspective. The genre of recent dystopian young adult fiction is examined, and how Slated fits within it and within dystopian fiction more generally considered. Finally, the impact of the analysis of terrorism and young adult dystopian fiction on the writing process of Slated is examined.
    • Test moment determination design in active robot learning

      Zhao, Danchen (University of Bedfordshire, 2009-11)
      In recent years, service robots have been increasingly used in people's daily live. These robots are autonomous or semiautonomous and are able to cooperate with their human users. Active robot learning (ARL) is an approach to the development of beliefs for the robots on their users' intention and preference, which is needed by the robots to facilitate the seamless cooperation with humans. This approach allows a robot to perform tests on its users and to build up the high-order beliefs according to the users' responses. This study carried out primary research on designing the test moment determination component in ARL framework. The test moment determination component is used to decide right moment of taking a test action. In this study, an action plan theory was suggested to synthesis actions into a sequence, that is, an action plan, for a given task. All actions are defined in a special format of precondition, action, post-condition and testing time. Forward chaining reasoning was introduced to establish connection between the actions and to synthesis individual actions into an action plan, corresponding to the given task. A simulation environment was set up where a human user and a service robot were modelled using MATLAB. Fuzzy control was employed for controlling the robot to carry out the cooperative action. In order to examine the effect of test moment determination component, simulations were performed to execute a scenario where a robot passes on an object to a human user. The simulation results show that an action plan can be formed according to provided conditions and executed by simulated models properly. Test actions were taken at the moment determined by the test moment determination component to find the human user's intention.
    • Testing academic literacy in reading and writing for university admissions

      Holland, Martine (University of Bedfordshire, 2019-07)
      Currently university entrance decisions are heavily reliant on further education qualifications and language proficiency tests, with little focus on academic literacy skills that are required to succeed at university. This thesis attempts to define what academic literacy skills are and to what extent they correlate with three measures of university success. To answer these two research questions, I first investigated what academic literacy skills are through a survey of the literature, university study skills websites and existing academic literacy tests, and from these results drew up a checklist for academic literacy test validation. I then attempted to validate a new academic literacy test through a mixed methods study: first by calculating the correlations between performance in this test and university grades, self-assessment and tutor assessment, then through a case study approach to investigate these relationships in more detail. My tentative findings are that, within the humanities and social sciences, the academic literacy test is likely to correlate strongly with university grades, both in the overall results and in two of the four marking criteria: coherence and cohesion, and engagement with sources, with some possibility of correlation in the argument criterion. The fourth criterion – academic language use – did not correlate, but this may be an effect of this particular participant sample rather than the test itself. I also suggest two areas that may be difficult to elicit under timed exam conditions: eliciting appropriate source use when sources are provided, and eliciting synthesis of ideas across two or more given sources.
    • The thermophysiological and ergogenic response to heat stress intervention strategies

      Potter, Claire (University of Bedfordshire, 2013-11)
      Endurance exercise in hot environments puts a great strain on both the physiological and cellular mechanisms of the body to maintain efficient heat dissipation and thermal homeostasis. Once the body is unable to dissipate more heat than is gained thermal stress increases core (TCore) and skin temperature (TSkin) impairing performance. Athletes and military personnel train and compete/work in many extreme environments; the utilisation of intervention strategies prior to exercise will delay the onset of fatigue and reduce thermal strain at a physiological and cellular level. The purpose of the first experiment was to investigate the combined effect of hyperhydration and pre-cooling methods on endurance cycling performance in the heat. Five healthy males completed a mile (16.1 km) self-paced time trial (TT) in a hot and humid environment (30°C & 50% RH) on 4 occasions: Glycerol hyperhydration (HH), pre-cooling (PC), glycerol hyperhydration and pre-cooling (HH+PC) and control (C). The cellular stress response was assessed via Heat Shock 70 kDa Protein 2 (HSP72) mRNA expression within leukocytes. There was a significant difference in completion time between the conditions (p = 0.025). On average, completion time during the PC trial was 6% faster than C (p = 0.03, 95% CI = -15 to - 210 s) and 4% faster than HH (p = 0.02, 95% CI = - 21 to -132 s). There was no significant difference in HSP72 mRNA expression between conditions (p = 0.26). PC via CWI alone or in combination with HH, enhanced endurance performance in hot and humid environments with no further ergogenic effect seen when HH was used in combination with PC. In light of the findings from the first experimental chapter, experiment 2 looked at the kinetics and mechanisms of G-HH compared to hyperhydration with water (W-HH) at rest. 16 resting males’ on 2 occasions: ingested one of two solutions evenly over a 90 min period. Glycerol solution (G-HH) or a water solution (W-HH). It was revealed that peak change in 2 plasma volume (%ΔPV) was significantly higher after G-HH (19.1 ± 6.3%) than W-HH (10.2 ± 4.5%) (F1, 9.3 = 14.37, p = 0.004). G-HH effectively expanded PV more than water hyperhydration for the full 120 min observation period (p = 0.02). It is recommended that exercise and extreme environment occupational pursuits (such as military and bush firefighters), commences immediately post the 90 min ingestion period when PV expansion is highest, to delay the onset of dehydration. The third experimental chapter investigated the potential pre-cooling action of an acute dose of acetaminophen and its comparison to established pre-cooling methods: cold water immersion and ice slurry ingestion on exercise in extreme heat. Evaluated from physiological and cellular perspective. 8 recreationally active males completed a 40 min sub-maximal run in extreme heat (40°C & 30% RH) on 4 occasions: cold water immersion (CWI), ice slurry ingestion (ICE), acetaminophen ingestion (ACT) and control (CON). There was significant reduction in TRectal (-0.48°C) and Tskin (4°C lower than all other conditions) after CWI compared to ICE, CON and ACT. A significant down regulation of HSP72 expression post exercise after ACT compared to CWI. ACT did not elicit a thermoregulatory reduction but did however reduce strain on a cellular level during exercise in extreme heat. CWI proved to be the most effective form of pre-cooling through the reduction of TRectal and Tskin prior to exercise. These findings confirm previous research that cold water immersion alters the robust PV expansion produced by glycerol hyperhydration (Gordon, Fogarty, Greenleaf et al., 2003). Cold water immersion is the most effective pre-cooling method to reduce thermal strain and improve performance it does however lack practical application. Acetaminophen did not prove to effectively reduce thermoregulatory strain but did however reduce strain on a cellular level. These results suggest that individuals participating in prolonged exercise in hot conditions due to its practicality for use in the field further research needs to be conducted in 3 to acetaminophen’s mechanisms of action and potential to reduce thermal strain at a cellular and possibly in the correct settings physiological level.
    • To compare the level of knowledge / awareness of sexual risk behaviour related to HIV/Aids among people from the Niger Delta and Abuja regions : a survey

      Barikpoar, Ebenezer (University of Bedfordshire, 2008-10)
      The Niger Delta and Abuja in Nigeria have distinct cultural and demographic profiles that could shape levels of awareness and risky sexual behaviour related HIV/AIDS. HIV/AIDS prevalence is high in Nigeria and this could be linked to intrinsic factors such as high poverty and low educational level among indigines in the Niger Delta, and extrinsic factors such as a presence of migrant oil company workers, and impact of having 3 out of 5 Nigeria seaports in the region. In contrast Abuja is the political capital of the country and this has resulted in an influx of people into the region both nationally and globally, seeking greener pastures. These factors are likely to influence population in these two areas and their responses. Studies have looked at the level of awareness about HIV/AIDS in Nigeria, but this study will be the first to compare two regions. This study compares levels of knowledge, awareness and high risk sexual behaviours among people from Niger Delta and those from the federal capital Abuja territory. A convenience sample of 200 customers half of which visited a pharmacy shop in the Niger Delta and the other half a pharmacy shop in Abuja over a 3 week period completed questionnaires administered to them by the author. Questions covered demographics, awareness level and sexual risk behaviours relating to HIV/AIDS. Responses to questions were compared using basic statistical analytic techniques. There was a high level of awareness among the Niger Delta and Abuja respondents although the Abuja respondents showed a higher level of awareness in comparison to the respondents from the Niger Delta. The Niger Delta respondents however, had a higher level of knowledge but were more likely to engage in high risk sexual behaviour compared to the Abuja respondents. High levels of knowledge and awareness about HIV/AIDS are not associated with low levels of risky sexual behaviour, the Niger Delta respondents despite having a reduced level of awareness are more like to be involved in high risk sexual behaviour than the Abuja respondents. Further research is needed using more robust methods and larger samples to explore and compare these issues.
    • To what extent are academic services able to help creative aspirations in achieving success?

      Schutz, Oana Claudia (University of Bedfordshire, 2008)
      Academic services have long been provided across a range of subjects. In the creative industries issues have arisen over the convergence of the creative industries in becoming a major player in the UK's economy. This thesis presents the results of research into the extent to which academic services assist creative aspirations. The research found failings and disagreements on many levels which at present is stifling the progress and successfulness of academic services within the creative industries. The thesis views all aspects of how the industries operate and its contribution to the economy in order that academic services can be most effective in serving the creative industries and furthering the skills set within them.
    • Towards the implementation of a network security assessment model focus on threat and risk management

      Hasan, Muhammad Fahim (University of Bedfordshire, 2011-01)
      Network security is an increasingly raising concern for every enterprise having IT infrastructure. The numbers of data breaches are increasing every year due to the complexity in the existing network security models. Background to the problem is that the existing network security assessment models cannot or not fully addressed in the given domain. The investigation is primarily focused on critical evaluation of various proposed network security assessment models with their strength and weakness. This thesis is a preliminary development of a model for assessing the network security taking under consideration the network associated risk. The proposed model simplifies the quantification process of the risk interrelated with organization network by utilizing various parameters. The model introduces the visualization techniques in the threats and vulnerability identification process as well. The end result of the measured risk has given a particular value with respect to its criticality in the conclusion of the model. This model will not only support in identification and classification of the threats but also enable the organization management to take well-informed decisions against the criticality found with risk expose by particular threat and vulnerability.
    • A traffic classification method using machine learning algorithm

      Chishti, Hamayoun Rauf (University of Bedfordshire, 2013)
      Applying concepts of attack investigation in IT industry, this idea has been developed to design a Traffic Classification Method using Data Mining techniques at the intersection of Machine Learning Algorithm, Which will classify the normal and malicious traffic. This classification will help to learn about the unknown attacks faced by IT industry. The notion of traffic classification is not a new concept; plenty of work has been done to classify the network traffic for heterogeneous application nowadays. Existing techniques such as (payload based, port based and statistical based) have their own pros and cons which will be discussed in this literature later, but classification using Machine Learning techniques is still an open field to explore and has provided very promising results up till now.
    • A trust modelling analysis for decreasing B2B monitoring costs in supply chain and electronic contracting settings

      Pasanajano, Pinthusorn (University of Bedfordshire, 2010-12)
      This research is proposed to examine the factor requirement for creating trust model to decrease costs in term of B2B supply chain and electronic contracting setting. Business to Business (B2B) is the electronic transactions between businesses over the internet. The business information propagated via B2B is cheaper and faster than traditional marketing such as advertisement and exhibitions and therefore is transmitted through the internet from local to global, from one place to another place and from business to business. However, business needs to monitor all of its products, services, customer, employee and suppliers for developing and improving its business framework to reach long-term profit. Consequently, there are high costs from products and services such as time, effort and customer’s knowledge. Trust is important, because it decreases transaction costs between businesses. If trust of transactions is high, they will use less time for monitoring costs. This thesis focuses on the perception of customers and employee and verified research hypotheses. The conceptual framework composes of factor that related to customer attitude, employee attitude, trust and monitoring cost. These factors will be undertaken by means of a survey of selected companies. The result of this study is essential to prove research hypotheses. This survey was conducted within coffee chain, superstore, network provider and hotel in Thailand. In total, 50 questionnaires were sent to customers and 40 questionnaires were sent to employees. The questionnaires were sent as an attachment with electronic mail. The results of this survey can be concluded that the method to decrease monitoring costs come from both customers and employees which include how long employees resolve customer problem as soon as possible, how employees decrease costs in their organisation and how they cut their marketing expenditure such as prevent unauthorised document, remove unauthorised document, monitor quality of products and keep records business transaction.
    • Tyrosine and its effect on cognitive function and load-carriage performance in the heat

      Coull, Nicole (University of Bedfordshire, 2015-12)
      Prolonged exercise-heat-stress impairs both exercise performance and cognitive function. Military based operations are often performed in hot environmental conditions and thus performance and safety may be compromised which could be potentially life threatening. Acute ingestion of tyrosine (TYR), a catecholamine precursor, has been shown to improve aspects of cognitive function and mood during exposure to stressful environments, in military and sport specific settings. Currently, there is limited research exploring the optimal dose of TYR relative to blood values, to prescribe pre-exercise or before exposure to a stressor. Therefore, the purpose of experimental chapter 1 was to investigate the effects of acute TYR ingestion strategies (0, 150 and 300 mg.kg body mass-1 TYR administered in 2 equal doses, 4 h apart) on serum TYR concentrations at rest. Twenty-one healthy males were randomly allocated to one of three groups (n = 7 per group); HIGH (300 mg.kg body mass-1 TYR in total), LOW (150 mg.kg body mass-1 TYR in total) and CON (sugar free squash placebo). Ingestion of TYR was double blinded and was administered in a drink form (dissolved in 250 mL sugar free squash) in two separate doses at both 0900 and 1300. Participants consumed a standardized breakfast (0800) and lunch (1200) prior to consumption of TYR and remained in the laboratory from 0900-1700 having blood drawn every hour from a cannula. Measures of gastric discomfort were also recorded. Significant differences in serum TYR concentrations were observed between groups (p < 0.001), with the HIGH dose (399 ± 69 μmol/L) resulting in the largest elevation compared to the LOW dose (279 ± 76 μmol/L) and CON (64 ± 11 μmol/L). Ingesting TYR as a double-dose did not significantly increase the peak in serum TYR compared to the first dose in both groups; LOW (221 vs 279 μmol/L) and HIGH dose (350 vs 399 μmol/L) (p > 0.05). No significant differences in gastric discomfort were observed between groups (p > 0.05). This study demonstrates that ingestion of a single dose of 150 mg.kg body mass-1 TYR may be sufficient to elevate serum TYR concentrations and that the peak in TYR concentration typically occurs 2 h post ingestion (without the need for a second identical dose 4 h later). Experimental chapter 2 was designed to investigate the effects of TYR ingestion on steady state exercise, cognitive function and time-trial performance in the heat, utilising the identified dose from the findings of experimental chapter 1. Eight recreationally active, healthy males visited the laboratory on four occasions (two familiarisation and two experimental conditions). In a double-blind, counter-balanced, crossover design participants ingested a placebo [PLA (250 mL sugar free squash)] or TYR (same as PLA plus 150 mg.kg body mass-1 TYR powder) 1 h pre-exercise. Participants completed a 60 min walk at 6.5 km.h, followed by a 2.4 km time-trial carrying a 25 kg backpack in 40°C; 30% RH. Cognitive function (vigilance, dual-task and simple reaction time) was assessed at 5 time-points; pre-ingestion, pre-exercise, 30 min into exercise, post 60 min exercise and post time-trial. Traditional physiological (HR), perceptual (RPE, TSS) and temperature (rectal and skin temperature) measures were recorded throughout exercise. A significant increase from pre-post exercise (p < 0.01) was observed for vigilance and dual-task FALSE scores, and for reaction time in both conditions. However, no significant difference was observed between TYR and PLA conditions in any of the cognitive tests measured (p > 0.05). Furthermore, no significant difference was observed in time-trial completion time (F1,14 = 547.9 , p = 0.74) between TYR (19.78 ± 3.44 min) and PLA (20.29 ± 3.55 min). No significant differences were observed in any of the physiological, perceptual or temperature measures between conditions (p > 0.05). The main findings presented within this thesis indicate that although it was identified that a single dose of 150 mg.kg body mass-1 was sufficient to significantly elevate serum TYR concentrations, ingestion of this dose did not influence cognitive function or time-trial performance in the heat. This is surprising since ingestion of similar doses have significantly improved aspects of cognitive function previously during exercise-heat-stress. In conclusion it appears that under the conditions of the present study, TYR is not a useful ergogenic aid. Future research should aim to elucidate the central effects of TYR to enable a better understanding of its mechanistic properties. Key words: Heat-stress; central fatigue; tyrosine; cognitive function
    • Understanding and improving police health and wellbeing: the PHeW project

      Kukucska, Dora (University of Bedfordshire, 2020-06)
      Aim: In the UK it has been reported that over 50% of the police workforce has taken sick leave for mental or physical health issues within the past five years. Bedfordshire Police Force has the fourth highest long term sick leave in the UK due to both physical and psychological health. Method: The study employed mixed methods across four phases of work (1. needs assessment, 2. Baseline assessment, 3. Intervention implementation, 4. Evaluation) to assess the physical health (body mass index, blood pressure), psychological wellbeing (stress anxiety, depression, mood, wellbeing), health behaviours (physical activity, nutrition, substance use, sleep), support needs and factors that influence the health and wellbeing of Bedfordshire Police employees. The study moreover tested the feasibility of brief positive psychology interventions (3 Good Things [expressive writing] Technique and Positive Password Mantras) for a length of 1 month. Results: Stress levels (personal, organisational and operational) and BMI were high in Bedfordshire Police Force employees and significantly correlated with poorer health behaviours. Recruitment to the interventions was low, and attrition over the four weeks was high, suggesting the current approach was not feasible. Interview findings indicated that future initiatives need to 1) Build belief in the support available; 2) Address perceived stigma; 3) Provide timely support; 4) Reduce work-related stress; 5) Make health and wellbeing a priority; 6) Encourage camaraderie and social support, and 7) Support positive coping strategies. Conclusion: There is a clear need and desire for occupational health support within Bedfordshire Police Force to support employees’ physical health and psychological wellbeing. Future interventions should consider employee’s capability, opportunity and motivation to engage and make initiatives easy, attractive, social and timely.
    • Understanding the role of tourism in poverty reduction, the case of communities adjacent to Mikumi National Park in Tanzania

      Kalemo, Zacharia Revocatus (University of Bedfordshire, 2011-03)
      For over three decades tourism has been said to have the potential to accelerate economic growth that can guarantee significant development especially in developing countries. To some extent, the notion seems to be gripping ground at national level, as many developing countries, including Tanzania have begun recording a relative increase in national incomes as a result of recent boom of tourism industry in these countries. Nevertheless, the notion seems to be off-track and perhaps unrealistic from local perspective, since until now there is little empirical evidence to suggest how much tourism is reducing poverty at household level and individual level. Given this lack of research into the effects of tourism on poverty, the study therefore aimed to contribute to the knowledge base on the role of tourism in poverty reduction, by evaluating how tourism is perceived as agent for improving the livelihoods of poor in communities adjacent to Mikumi National Park (MINAPA) in Tanzania. To achieve this goal, the study developed three key research questions to guide this investigation: How is poverty understood and experienced by the communities adjacent to MINAPA? How is tourism understood as an agent for reducing poverty in these communities? Do barriers to participation of the poor in tourism exist and how could these be overcome? Since this study intended to ascertain data on understandings and lived experiences of poverty, and the perceptions about the interaction of tourism with poverty, the overarching stance for this study is therefore interpretivist, with emphasis on understanding the subjective meaning of lived experiences, rather than explaining the objective aspect of lived experience as in positivist paradigm. The research involved amalgamating phenomenology and ethnography coupled with various research methods in order to gain rich data on phenomena investigated. Themes were identified by using thematic analysis method. The findings of this study suggest that at the moment tourism is having insignificant contribution on poverty reduction in communities investigated in this study. However, most research participants perceived tourism as a positive initiative that can help to improve the livelihoods of the poor in their communities. But a number of barriers were acknowledged that hinder their participation in tourism, including, lack of involvement and empowerment of local communities in the management and sharing of benefits accrued through tourism in MINAPA. This study has therefore recommended for the renewed cooperation between all stakeholders in tourism, which is built on the real realm of transparency should poverty reduction through tourism turned from theory to reality. The contributions of this study to the tourism poverty reduction knowledge base include information on how tourism is perceived by the resource poor; enhanced knowledge with findings indicating tourism is not improving the livelihoods of the poor in communities investigated in this study; just to mention few.
    • Undressing truth: applications and negations of nudity on the stage and in the audience

      Fielding, Carly (University of Bedfordshire, 2014-03)
      The aim of this project is to test contemporary performance making’s trends and views in relation to the moral values imposed on them by society. As such, it looks at shock values applied to nudity within theatre and dance in the UK. The proposed argument of this work focuses on and questions whether the reaction of current British audiences to nudity still stem from tenets and biases rooted in Victorian morals. As suggested above, the research will explore the use of nudity within theatre and dance, applying theories of sexuality and social politics. To achieve the proposed aims, the thesis will briefly explore the work of two current practitioners who are investigating similar themes. These are Javier De Frutos and Dave St Pierre. They were chosen because of their use of shock tactics in performance. In line with the thinking that informs their practices, this work both proposes and relies on the creation of a test bed which, it is hoped, will help take the pulse of contemporary performance making in the UK. It will also check where is it that audiences and practitioners are standing in terms of social constraints regarding nudity. As such this is an experiment; and although there are many performances that use nudity for shock value, none of them appear to have published findings regarding the causal effect of nudity on shock. The work of Dave St Pierre and Javier De Frutos will be used to highlight the use of shock within performance making. The work of Sigmund Freud and Michel Foucault will also be explored as theoretical grounding for the research. The main body of text will draw upon the practice as research as the primary source, with some references to the authors previous research regarding censorship of nudity in theatre (2012). The formulation of the thesis will draw on the outcomes of the practice based investigation, references to books, journals and interviews - discussed more in depth in the ensuing literature review and, most significantly, on data collected and collated from questionnaires audience members attending the especially devised performance were asked to respond to.
    • United Nations sanctions and the individual: a proposal for an international judicial review/appeal procedure

      Stevens, Brian Joe (University of Bedfordshire, 2013-04)
      Currently the United Nations (UN) through its Security Council (UNSC) have issued a number of Resolutions that required member states to implement immediately, legislation which places severe restrictions such as assets freezing and travel bans on a number of individuals, groups and other entities who are believed to be involved in or connected to international terrorism, particularly those affiliated with Al Qaida. Those subjected to these sanctions have no ability to seek an independent judicial review or appeal capable of offering just satisfaction of their particular case at either national regional or international level due to the supremacy of the UN charter in international law. The UN itself currently has no judicial review or appeal mechanism capable of hearing complaints by those subjected to this system of ‘targeted’ or ‘smart’ sanctions. In most cases, with one notable exception national and regional Courts have given supremacy to the UN’s decision over human rights concerns due their own obligations under the UN Charter. In particular the right to have an effective method of judicial review has been ignored. This study will concentrate on the inability of those subjected to these measures imposed on them under UN sanctions to have a suitable judicial review mechanism for violations of internationally accepted human right norms. This study will suggest a theoretical solution, which is however grounded in international law, to counter this inherent lack of judicial review at the level of the United Nations. It will contend that the measures currently employed by the UN appear to run counter to internationally accepted human rights norms and the accepted international standards for the rule of law that the UN has through its own rhetoric set for itself and the wider international community.
    • Use of machine learning to reduce false alarms

      Ali, Muhammed Usman (University of Bedfordshire, 2020)
      Machine learning is adopted widely in many sectors including healthcare, automotive and finance where machine learning use cases include disease detection, predictive maintenance, and fraud detection. During 2017/2018, around 40%(226,000) of the incidents attended by fire and rescue service were false alarms. Therefore, this thesis is focused towards the application of machine learning on fire alarm systems data to address the rising problem of false alarms. The fire alarm system on site gathers the data about different events which can be utilised to conduct the experiments with machine learning. Therefore , to address this problem five different classification machine learning models including Logistic Regression, Support Vector Machines, Naïve Bayes Classifier, Decision Trees and Random Forests have been used to experiment with data gathered from fire alarm system. The performance of the different machine learning models is evaluated using different methods such as precision, recall, f1- score, confusion matrix, k-fold cross validation and mean accuracy to find the best suited models for reducing false alarm rates. Experiments were conducted on data gathered from the fire alarm system, 10-fold cross validation results indicated Naïve Bayes Classifier detecting 51 out of 53 Fires correctly but with a high misclassification rate and low mean accuracy of 61%. The remaining four models failed in classifying any fires correctly with 0.00 recall, still achieving overall accuracy in the range of 97-98% due to high imbalance in the dataset. The Cohen Kappa value of 0.0 was achieved by models indicating poor agreement in the decisions made. Machine learning models exhibited better performance on the new test data with incorporated temperature data, models achieved higher recall in the range of 0.70 to 1.00 during 10-fold cross validation as well as higher Cohen Kappa scores in the range 0.73 to 0.88 indicating substantial agreement in the decisions made by the machine learning models. The results on fire system data indicated machine may not be that effective due to poor correlation between the features in the data and high imbalance in the data. However, much better results are achieved by incorporating some additional sensors such as temperature into the fire alarm system data.
    • Validity of claims for efficacy of the O2 and CO2 “tolerance training tables”, and associated risks

      Barry-Wilson, Samantha (University of Bedfordshire, 2010-03)
      Both physical and apneic (voluntary breath hold) training have been shown to prolong apneic time. One of the most readily available training developments are the 'tolerance training tables' (TTT). These are a series of breath-hold and breathing periods intended to elicit low O2 or high CO2 levels in a progressive fashion. Developments of the tables have been made on the basis of anecdotal evidence. These tables are yet to be formalised and validated or risk assessed During a familiarisation session, participants were required to attempt a maximal breath-hold (MaxBH) time; breath-hold and breathing period ratios for the 'tables' were derived from this MaxBH. During the investigation participants were required to attend two counterbalanced weeks (C02 and O2) of testing. Expiratory gases were monitored using breath-by-breath analysis (Cortex Biophysics, Liepzig, Germany) to observe any intervention derived blood gas changes. Blood oxygen saturation levels were monitored non-invasively via pulse oximetry (LifePulse, LP28, HME Ltd., England [extremity]; Avant 2120, Nonin, USA [ear]). Empirical trends in O2 values were seen within the O2 TTT. O2 values prior to breath-hold displayed a pattern of progressive increase over the series of eight breath-holds with a controlled 3-breath breath-up strategy. O2 values post breath-hold displayed a pattern of progressive reduction over the series of eight breath-holds, evidencing the increasing metabolism of O2 during apnea. Despite this, a univariate ANOVA indicated no statistical significance between the eight phases of breath-hold (e.g. p = 0.134). CO2 values indicated no empirical trends and no statistical significance prior to, or following, breath-hold. CO2 values displayed relatively unchanged values following the series of eight breath-holds. Comparisons between O2 and CO2 protocols indicated no statistical difference.
    • The validity of two compartment model methods of body composition as compared to magnetic resonance imaging in Asian Indian versus Caucasian males

      Davies, Ben Rhys (University of Bedfordshire, 2010-11)
      Background: The two-compartment (2C) model is a relatively accessible, inexpensive and time efficient method for body composition measurement. There is very little validated research on the 2C model in Asian Indians: a high risk population in terms of obesity and related disorders. This highlights the need for valid estimates of body composition from the 2C model. Purpose: The goal was to compare 2C model (predictor) estimates of body composition to those from magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) (criterion), an established gold standard measure of total adiposity in order to determine the validity of the 2C model in the Asian Indian population. From this data it is hoped that a correction equation may be determined for more accurate prediction of Asian Indian body composition using 2C model methods. Methods: 21 males (10 Asian Indian and 11 Caucasian, aged 18-55 yrs) had estimates of percent body fat from 2C methods (sum of four skinfolds and anthropometry, bioelectrical impedance analysis [Bodystat 1500 and Tanita segmental impedance analyser], air displacement plethysmography [Bod Pod] and hydrostatic weighing) compared to MRI measured body composition values. Agreement was assessed using multiple linear regression analysis and Bland-Altman plots. Differences were assessed using repeated measures analysis of variance. Results: Regression analysis showed air displacement plethysmography predicts MRI body composition in Caucasian males (adjusted r2 = 0.74; SEE =3.27 ). In Asian Indians, tricep skinfold thickness and hydrostatic weighing predicted MRI body composition with a low prediction error (adjusted r2 = 0.90; SEE =1.75). Despite strong correlations and no significant difference between mean differences of the 2C methods, used in the prediction model, and MRI, BlandAltman plots revealed no acceptable limits of agreement between the methods. Asian Indian body composition was underestimated by all two compartment devices compared to MRI. Conclusion: There appears to be potential for the use of tricep skinfold thickness and hydrostatic weighing to predict an established reference measure (MRI) in the high risk Asian Indian population. The 2C model underestimated Asian Indian body composition, this suggests that un-validated, the 2C model may misidentify obesity and in turn health risk. However the small sample tested, has implications for the interpretation of the findings. Further investigation is required with a greater sample size to validate the 2C model against an established reference measure such as MRI as there is currently little published validation data in this ethnic group.
    • Wearable non-invasive optical body sensor for measuring personal health vital signs

      Cohen, Zachary Joel Valentino (University of Bedfordshire, 2016-01)
      In this thesis, we report the development and implementation of healthcare sensor devices integrated into a wearable ring device. Using photoplethysmography (PPG) methods, we design a heart rate monitor, a unique method to measure oxygen saturation in the blood and discuss a potentially new method of continuous measurement of blood pressure. In this thesis we also report implementation of a temperature sensor using an LM35 transistor to measure body temperature. A method of integrating electrocardiography into the proposed device is also presented.
    • What happens between 4-5am?

      La-Traille, Mike (University of Bedfordshire, 2010)
      My research involved the use of sound and the visual image, to show the development of time through a multi-screen installation that allowed the sixty minutes to unfold from a fixed camera position. The work looked at the use of multi-screen projections and what they can lend to an installation and how the audience understands them. This work also explores the idea of whether it is important to construct a narrative in an audio/visual installation for an audience or whether they would understand the concept without any manipulation. The concept of the piece is about what occurs between the hours of 4-5am. To help demonstrate my findings I decided to produce a series of films that all lasted for sixty minutes each. The films were unedited, fixed camera shots that observe the action to capture reality and never attempt to follow and construct one. I felt Andre Bazin’s technique of ‘pure cinema’ with long shots was the most appropriate way of achieving this. I believed the best way to illustrate this would be to build up the screens from a one screen painterly shot through to multi-screens progressing from a triptych to five, seven and finally a nine screen film which was full of images. The idea is to expose various spaces, their differences during the time period and suggest how all are occurring concurrently during this one solitary hour. In conclusion, it’s becomes obvious that a viewer of an installation can construct their own narrative. The viewer has the ability to construct their own structured narrative with a start, middle and end depending on when they entered the installation. The installation is important because it allowed the viewer to become immersed in the subject and interact with the films and not just become a passive observer. The use of natural sound added to the atmosphere created through the fixed camera films. The fixed camera filming allowed for observation of the time period capturing what was in front of the lens and never following the action, the use of multi-screens meant more information could be disseminated to the viewer without the need for film editing and manipulation. The multi-screen images allowed the viewer to generate their own perceptions of the time period. They also allowed the viewer to make links between the different locations, seasons and time zones.