Now showing items 1-20 of 7182

    • The impact of input format on written performance in a listening-into-writing assessment

      Westbrook, Carolyn; British Council; University of Bedfordshire (Elsevier Ltd, 2022-12-06)
      Over the last five decades, research in teaching and testing (academic) listening has investigated different foci. Initially, teaching listening involved bottom-up approaches (Dirven and Oakeshott-Taylor, 1984) then both higher- and lower-level processes were integrated (Voss, 1984). In the early 2000s, different input formats (Read, 2002) and discourse features of lectures (Thompson, 2003) were the subjects of academic listening research. More recently, EAP tests have increasingly taken an integrated approach to reflect real-world tasks, yet few studies have looked at integrated listening-into-writing tasks (Cubilo and Winke, 2013). This counter-balanced measures design study investigates how test taker performance differs on an integrated EAP listening-into-writing task when lecture input is presented as audio only in one half and video in the other half of the input. Two groups of test takers took part in the current study. A Hotelling's T2 test revealed a statistically significant effect on scores when test takers were presented with the audio only input first but there was no significant effect on scores when the video input was presented first. Data on test taker preferences revealed that more people preferred the video input to audio only.
    • Effect of intake charge temperature on oxy-fuel combustion in an HCCI diesel engine under different carbon dioxide dilutions

      Mobasheri, Raouf; Aitouche, Abdel; Mumputu, J.B.; Li, Xiang; Peng, Zhijun; University Lille; Junia, Smart Systems and Energies; University of Bedfordshire; University of Lincoln (American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), 2022-10-20)
      Carbon dioxide is one of the leading contributors to global warming. Oxy-fuel combustion (OFC) integrated with carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology is an efficient way to reduce carbon dioxide emissions. In OFC, pure oxygen (O2) is used instead of air to react with hydrocarbon fuel. Consequently, the products of combustion mainly include carbon dioxide (CO2) and water vapor (H2O) under lean conditions. Meanwhile, due to the absence of N2 in the intake charge, nitrogen-related emissions such as NOx are greatly removed from the exhaust gases. In the present study, the effect of intake charge temperature on OFC has been investigated in a diesel engine under the homogeneous charge compression ignition (HCCI) mode. In order to control combustion temperature and avoid overheating problems caused by oxygen in OFC, a portion of the exhaust CO2 was added to the O2. For this purpose, different CO2 dilutions ranging from 79-85% have been employed. It has been found that OFC can significantly reduce CO and particulate matter (PM) emissions while eliminating NOx emissions. With a higher intake charge temperature, combustion occurs earlier with shorter main stages, reducing the indicated mean effective pressure (IMEP) and increasing the indicated specific fuel consumption (ISFC), whereas, with a lower intake charge temperature, combustion stability deteriorates leading to incomplete OFC. By raising the intake charge temperature from 140 C to 220 C and applying 21% O2 and 79% CO2 v/v, the indicated thermal efficiency (ITE) is reduced from 34.6% to 29.2% while ISFC is increased from 0.24 to 0.285 Kg/kWh.
    • Life cycle assessment tool for food supply chain environmental evaluation

      da Costa, Tamíris; Gillespie, James; Pelc, Katarzyna; Adefisan, Abi; Adefisan, Michael; Ramanathan, Ramakrishnan; Murphy, Fionnuala; University College Dublin; Ulster University; University of Bedfordshire; et al. (MDPI, 2022-12-31)
      Food is at the centre of efforts to combat climate change, reduce water stress, pollution, and conserve the world’s wildlife. Assessing the environmental performance of food companies is essential to provide a comprehensive view of the production processes and gain insight into improvement options, but such a tool is currently non-existent in the literature. This study proposed a tool based on the life cycle assessment methodology focused on six stages of the food chain, raw materials acquisition, supplier, manufacturing, distribution, retail and wastes. The user can also evaluate the implementation of Internet of Things (IoT) technologies to reduce food waste applied in the real-world problems. The tool was validated through a case study of a food manufacturing company that prepares frozen meals via vending machines. The LCA results provided by the tool showed that food raw materials production is the main hotspot of nine impact categories. The IoT technologies’ contribution increased the company’s impact by around 0.4%. However, it is expected that employing these monitoring technologies would prevent food waste generation and the associated environmental impacts. Therefore, the results of this paper provide evidence that the proposed tool is suitable for determining environmental impacts and savings of food supply chain companies.
    • A case study of human milk banking with focus on the role of IoT sensor technology

      Ramanathan, Usha; Pelc, Katarzyna; da Costa, Tamíris; Ramanathan, Ramakrishnan; Shenker, Natalie; Nottingham Trent University; University of Bedfordshire; University College Dublin; University of Essex; Imperial College London; et al. (MDPI, 2022-12-23)
      Human milk is the biological norm for newborn nutrition, with breast milk from the mother being recognized as the best source of nutrition for infant health. When the mother’s milk is unavailable, donor human milk is the best alternative for infants with low birthweights. Growing recognition of the benefits of donor human milk has led to increasing global interest in monitoring and controlling human milk’s quality to fulfil the need for donor human milk. In response to this need, the REAMIT project proposed to adapt and apply existing innovative technology to continuously monitor and record human milk quality and signal potential milk quality issues. IoT sensors and big data technology have been used to monitor conditions that may increase spoilage (such as temperature and humidity) in the transportation stage. The sensors were installed in the insulated bags used to transport the milk from the donor’s home or hospital to the human milk bank and vice versa. The temperature and humidity were collected every 30 min, whilst the GPS locator sent data every 2 min. The data are collected in the cloud using GPRS/CAT-M1 technology. An algorithm was designed to send alerts when the milk temperature is above the prespecified threshold specified by the organisation, i.e., above −20 °C. The experience showed evidence that IoT sensors can efficiently be used to monitor and maintain quality in supply chains of high-quality human milk. This rare product needs a high level of quality control, which is possible with the support of smart technologies. The IoT technology used can help the human milk supply chain in five different aspects, namely by reducing waste, assuring quality, improving availability, reducing cost and improving sustainability. This system could be extended to various supply chains of rare and precious commodities, including further medical supplies such as human blood and organs, to completely avoid waste and ensure total quality in supply chains.
    • Comparative investigation on macroscopic and microscopic characteristics of impingement spray of gasoline and ethanol from a GDI injector under injection pressure up to 50 MPa

      Li, Xiang; Li, Dayou; Dimitriou, Pavlos; Ajmal, Tahmina; Aitouche, Abdel; Mobasheri, Raouf; Rybdylova, Oyuna; Pei, Yiqiang; Peng, Zhijun; University of Bedfordshire; et al. (Elsevier Ltd, 2023-01-09)
      Particulate Matter (PM) emissions from passenger vehicles have attracted considerable interest over the last decade. In order to reduce PM emissions, improving maximum injection pressure has been a developing trend for new generation GDI engines. However, comparing gasoline and ethanol impingement spray characteristics from a GDI injector under high injection pressure is still unclear. In this paper, a comparative investigation on both the macroscopic and microscopic characteristics of impingement spray from a GDI injector fuelled with gasoline and ethanol was performed under injection pressure up to 50 MPa, providing new findings to promote a more homogeneous air–fuel mixture and reduce PM emissions. The experimental results show that under the same PI (injection pressure), rebound height of gasoline impingement spray is a bit higher than ethanol. AS (spray area) of gasoline is slightly higher than ethanol under PI=10MPa. However, under PI=30MPa and PI=50MPa, AS of gasoline is gradually exceeded by that of ethanol as time progresses. By increasing PI to 50 MPa, the difference in DN (diffusion distance of the near side) between gasoline and ethanol is greatly reduced, meantime DF (diffusion distance of the far side) becomes weaker than ethanol. For both gasoline and ethanol, with the increase PI from 10 MPa to 50 MPa, VN (average normal component of droplet velocity) and VT (average tangential component of droplet velocity) of incident droplets increase by around 1 m/s. Meantime, there is a slight decrease in the absolute value of VN and VT of reflected droplets. DSMD (Sauter mean diameter of droplets) presents a significant decreasing trend with the increase of PI. Besides, a smaller DSMD can be seen for the gasoline impingement spray compared to ethanol under the same PI.
    • Gut microbiota and time-restricted feeding/eating: a targeted biomarker and approach in precision nutrition

      Zeb, Falak; Osaili, Tareq; Obaid, Reyad Shakir; Naja, Farah; Radwan, Hadia; Cheikh Ismail, Leila; Hasan, Hayder; Hashim, Mona; Alam, Iftikhar; Sehar, Bismillah; et al. (MDPI, 2023-01-04)
      Each individual has a unique gut microbiota; therefore, the genes in our microbiome outnumber the genes in our genome by about 150 to 1. Perturbation in host nutritional status influences gut microbiome composition and vice versa. The gut microbiome can help in producing vitamins, hormones, and other active metabolites that support the immune system; harvest energy from food; aid in digestion; protect against pathogens; improve gut transit and function; send signals to the brain and other organs; oscillate the circadian rhythm; and coordinate with the host metabolism through multiple cellular pathways. Gut microbiota can be influenced by host genetics, medications, diet, and lifestyle factors from preterm to aging. Aligning with precision nutrition, identifying a personalized microbiome mandates the provision of the right nutrients at the right time to the right patient. Thus, before prescribing a personalized treatment, it is crucial to monitor and count the gut flora as a focused biomarker. Many nutritional approaches that have been developed help in maintaining and restoring an optimal microbiome such as specific diet therapy, nutrition interventions, and customized eating patterns. One of these approaches is time-restricted feeding/eating (TRF/E), a type of intermittent fasting (IF) in which a subject abstains from food intake for a specific time window. Such a dietary modification might alter and restore the gut microbiome for proper alignment of cellular and molecular pathways throughout the lifespan. In this review, we have highlighted that the gut microbiota would be a targeted biomarker and TRF/E would be a targeted approach for restoring the gut-microbiome-associated molecular pathways such as hormonal signaling, the circadian system, metabolic regulators, neural responses, and immune-inflammatory pathways. Consequently, modulation of the gut microbiota through TRF/E could contribute to proper utilization and availability of the nutrients and in this way confer protection against diseases for harnessing personalized nutrition approaches to improve human health.
    • Mental health disorders and recidivism among incarcerated adult offenders in a correctional facility in South Africa: a cluster analysis.

      Shishane, Kwanele; John-Langba, Johannes; Onifade, Eyitayo; ; University of Bedfordshire; University of KwaZulu-Natal; Clark Atlanta University (Plos One, 2023-01-19)
      The contribution of mental illness, substance use, and appetitive aggression to recidivism has significant policy and practice implications. Offenders with untreated mental illness have a higher recidivism rate and a greater number of criminogenic risk factors than those without mental illness. Previous research has demonstrated that the likelihood of appetitive aggression increases in violent contexts where individuals perpetrate aggressive acts. Using the Ecological Systems Theory, this study investigated the association between mental health disorders and recidivism among incarcerated adult offenders in South Africa, and the intervening role of appetitive aggression and substance use. Using a cross-sectional quantitative research design, a sample of 280 incarcerated male and female adult offenders aged 18-35 with no known psychiatric disorders were sampled at a correctional facility in South Africa. The re-incarceration rate, mental health disorders, substance use, and appetitive aggression symptomology were assessed using the Hopkins symptoms checklist, the CRAFFT measure of substance use, and the appetitive aggression scale. Findings indicate a 32.4% recidivism rate (n = 82). Cluster analysis indicated that the combination of anxiety, depression, substance use, and appetitive aggression increased the likelihood of recidivism. Appetitive aggression median differences between clusters 2 and 3 played a key role in distinguishing recidivism risk among recidivist and non-recidivist participants. Chi-square analysis highlighted group differences in education levels among the established clusters [x2 (3, n = 217) = 12.832, p = .005, which is < .05] as well as group differences in the type of criminal offence [x2 (3, n = 187) = 24.362, p = .000, which is < .05] and cluster membership. Combined factors that increase the likelihood of recidivism provide a typology for classifying offenders based on particular recidivism risk determinants, which offers insights for developing tailored interventions that address a combination of factors.
    • The effects of language learning and math mindsets on academic success in an engineering program

      Kaya, Sibel; Yuksel, Dogan; Curle, Samantha; (Wiley, 2022-12-29)
      Background Mindsets are based on two basic assumptions: some people think that their intellectual abilities can be developed through hard work and instruction (i.e., a growth mindset), whereas others believe that nothing can change their level of intellectual ability (i.e., a fixed mindset). The association between mindsets and academic achievement has been examined in different academic subjects, such as biology and math. However, no previous study has examined the effects of language learning mindsets (LLMs) and math mindsets (MMs) on academic success in an English medium instruction (EMI) setting in which English, rather than the first language of the students, is used for teaching content (e.g., mechatronics engineering). Purpose/Hypothesis This study explores the relationship between Turkish mechatronics engineering undergraduate students' domain-specific mindsets, LLMs and MMs, and their academic success. Design/Method Student test scores for English medium and first-language medium courses were collected from fourth-year students studying mechatronics engineering (n = 68) at a public university in Turkey. Students also completed the LLM and MM inventories. Results Regression analyses revealed that growth LLM and MM were positive predictors of EMI and Turkish medium of instruction (TMI) academic success, whereas fixed LLM and MM were negative predictors of EMI and TMI academic success. Conclusions In both EMI and TMI courses, a growth mindset in math and language learning can profoundly predict students' academic achievement in a mechatronics engineering program. We argue that domain-specific mindsets can effectively explain the self-theories of intelligence and achievement.
    • Impact of nutrition interventions for reduction of anemia in women of reproductive age in low- and middle-income countries: a meta-review

      Panchal, Pooja; Ravalia, Anal; Rana, Ritu; Puthussery, Shuby; Vaze, Gauri; Mavlankar, Dileep; Menon, Kavitha (Oxford University Press, 2022-12-31)
      The UN Sustainable Development Goal aims at a 50% reduction of anemia in women of reproductive age (WRA) by 2030. Several nutrition-specific and sensitive interventions are targeted across low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) to reduce anemia. In this meta-review we comprehensively assessed the effectiveness of nutrition-specific and -sensitive interventions on hemoglobin (Hb) and serum ferritin (SF) concentrations and the prevalence of iron deficiency and anemia among WRA, pregnant women, and lactating women from LMICs. The preparation of the present meta-review followed a double-blinded synthesis process with 3 stages: screening, quality appraisal, and data extraction in Eppi Reviewer. A comprehensive search was performed for systematic reviews (SRs) published between January 2000 and May 2022 using 21 international, national, and regional databases. The methodological quality appraisal of included studies was conducted using the Assessing the Methodological Quality of Systematic Reviews (AMSTAR) checklist. A total of 23 SRs evaluated the effects of various nutrition-specific interventions included in the final synthesis. The included SRs included analyses of nutrition-specific interventions such as supplementation of the nutrients iron (n = 7), iron and folic acid (n = 4), vitamin A (n = 3), calcium (n = 2), multiple micronutrients (n = 7), and intravenous iron sucrose (n = 2). Also, SRs on fortification of nutrients included multiple micronutrients (n = 6), iron and folic acid (n = 4), and iron (n = 4). Of the 23 SRs, 22 were of high quality. Iron with or without folic acid supplementation and fortification and vitamin A supplementation consistently showed positive effects on either reduction in the prevalence of anemia or iron deficiency and improving the Hb or SF concentrations in WRA and pregnant women from LMICs. The comprehensive meta-review reported the beneficial effects of iron with or without folic acid, multiple micronutrient supplementation/fortification, and vitamin A supplementation in reducing the prevalence of anemia or iron deficiency and increasing Hb or SF concentrations in WRA from LMICs.
    • Breaking up sitting with short frequent or long infrequent physical activity breaks does not lead to compensatory changes in appetite, appetite-regulating hormones or energy intake

      Maylor, Benjamin David; Zakrzewski-Fruer, Julia K.; Stensel, David J.; Orton, Charlie J.; Bailey, Daniel Paul; ; University of Bedfordshire; Leicester General Hospital; Loughborough University; Waseda University; et al. (Elsevier, 2022-12-30)
      The aim of this study was to determine the appetite-related responses to breaking up prolonged sitting with physical activity bouts differing in frequency and duration among adult females. Fourteen sedentary females aged 34 ± 13 years with a body mass index of 27.1 ± 6.3 kg/m2 (mean ± SD) took part in a randomised crossover trial with three, 7.5 h conditions: (1) uninterrupted sitting (SIT), (2) sitting with short frequent 2-min moderate-intensity walking breaks every 30 min (SHORT-BREAKS), and (3) sitting with longer duration, less frequent 10-min moderate-intensity walking breaks every 170–180 min (LONG-BREAKS). The intensity and total duration of physical activity was matched between the SHORT-BREAKS and LONG-BREAKS conditions. Linear mixed models were used to compare the outcomes between conditions with significance being accepted as p ≤ 0.05. There were no significant between-condition differences in hunger, satisfaction, prospective food consumption or overall appetite area under the curve (AUC) (all p ≥ 0.801). Absolute ad libitum energy intake and relative energy intake (REI) did not differ significantly between conditions (all p ≥ 0.420). Acylated ghrelin and total peptide YY incremental and total AUC did not differ significantly between conditions (all p ≥ 0.388). Yet, there was a medium effect size for the higher acylated ghrelin incremental AUC in SHORT-BREAKS versus SIT (d = 0.61); the reverse was seen for total AUC, which was lower in SHORT-BREAKS versus SIT (d = 0.69). These findings suggest that breaking up sitting does not lead to compensatory changes in appetite, appetite hormones or energy intake regardless of physical activity bout duration and frequency among adult females.
    • Teacher mindset and grit: how do they change by teacher training, gender, and subject taught?

      Kaya, Sibel; Yuksel, Dogan; University of Bedfordshire; Kocaeli University (2022-11-01)
      This study explored the interplay between teacher mindsets and grit levels of Turkish pre-service teachers taking their year of study into account (i.e., first-year vs the fourth year), gender, and the subject taught in a Turkish higher education setting. Student teachers from various programmes at a public university in Turkey participated in the study (N = 321). The participants completed the Teacher Mindset Scale and Grit Scale online after receiving the approval of the university’s ethics committee and signing the consent forms. The correlations between the components of teacher mindset and grit demonstrated that as growth teacher mindset scores increased, and effort scores also increased significantly. Furthermore, as fixed teacher mindset scores increased, interest scores decreased. First-year pre-service teachers had significantly higher fixed teacher mindset scores than the fourth year. In terms of grit, fourth-year pre-service teachers showed greater effort than the first year. There was no difference between female and male pre-service teachers regarding fixed teacher mindset. However, female pre-service teachers scored significantly higher on growth teacher mindset, interest, and effort scales. As for the subject taught, the Mathematics Education programme showed higher levels of fixed teacher mindset and the English Language Teaching programme showed lower levels of grit. Practical implications of our findings and limitations of the study are shared accordingly.
    • The Frail-LESS (LEss Sitting and Sarcopenia in Frail older adults) intervention to improve sarcopenia and maintain independent living via reductions in prolonged sitting: a randomised controlled feasibility trial protocol

      Bailey, Daniel Paul; Kilbride, Cherry; Harper, Jamie H.; Victor, Christina; Brierley, Marsha Lynn; Hewson, David; Chater, Angel M.; (Biomed Central, 2023-01-07)
      Background Sarcopenia is a progressive and generalised loss of muscle mass and function with advancing age and is a major contributor to frailty. These conditions lead to functional disability, loss of independence, and lower quality of life. Sedentary behaviour is adversely associated with sarcopenia and frailty. Reducing and breaking up sitting should thus be explored as an intervention target for their management. The primary aim of this study, therefore, is to examine the feasibility, safety, and acceptability of conducting a randomised controlled trial (RCT) that evaluates a remotely delivered intervention to improve sarcopenia and independent living via reducing and breaking up sitting in frail older adults. Methods This mixed-methods randomised controlled feasibility trial will recruit 60 community-dwelling older adults aged ≥ 65 years with very mild or mild frailty. After baseline measures, participants will be randomised to receive the Frail-LESS (LEss Sitting and Sarcopenia in Frail older adults) intervention or serve as controls (usual care) for 6 months. Frail-LESS is a remotely delivered intervention comprising of tailored feedback on sitting, information on the health risks of excess sitting, supported goal setting and action planning, a wearable device that tracks inactive time and provides alerts to move, health coaching, and peer support. Feasibility will be assessed in terms of recruitment, retention, and data completion rates. A process evaluation will assess intervention acceptability, safety, and fidelity of the trial. The following measures will be taken at baseline, 3 months, and 6 months: sitting, standing, and stepping using a thigh-worn activPAL4 device, sarcopenia (via hand grip strength, muscle mass, and physical function), mood, wellbeing, and quality of life. Discussion This study will determine the feasibility, safety, and acceptability of evaluating a remote intervention to reduce and break up sitting to support improvements in sarcopenia and independent living in frail older adults. A future definitive RCT to determine intervention effectiveness will be informed by the study findings.
    • Cardiac structure and function in resistance-trained and untrained adults: a systematic review and meta-analysis

      Saunders, Abigail M.; Jones, Rebecca; Richards, Joanna C.; ; University of Bedfordshire; University of Lincoln (Taylor and Francis, 2022-11-18)
      Variations in the haemodynamic demands of specific training modalities may explain characteristic differences in cardiac structure and function amongst athletes. However, current consensus regarding these adaptations in highly resistance-trained athletes is yet to be established. The current invetsigation aimed to collate research investigating cardiac structure and function in resistance-trained athletes, exploring the defining characteristics of Athlete’s Heart within these individuals. Seven electronic databases were searched. Studies which examined at least one measure of cardiac structure or function, included healthy, normotensive male or females (>18 years) and compared athletes engaged in a resistance training programme (>12 months) to an untrained group engaged in no structured training programme were included. Systematic selection and quality appraisal of articles was performed by two reviewers, with a random effects meta-analysis model applied to suitable studies. Studies were limited to orginal peer-reviewed articles published in English. Resistance-trained athletes (n = 949) demonstrated greater cardiac dimensions compared to their untrained counterparts (n = 1053). No clear impairments to systolic or diastolic cardiac function were observed in athletic population studied here. Resistance-trained athletes display some characteristics of the Athlete's Heart phenomenon, including greater wall thickening and chamber dilation compared to their untrained counterparts.
    • Deep sea mining for renewable technologies: a case study for using Big Data

      Crabbe, M. James C.; Oxford University; University of Bedfordshire; Shanxi University (World Scientific Publishing Company, 2022-10-18)
      Depleting terrestrial deposits and rising demand for metals in this time of climate change are stimulating interest in the deep sea — the area of the ocean below 200m — with commercial mining of mineral deposits imminent. Environmental impact assessments, effective regulation and mitigation strategies are needed to limit the impacts of deep-sea mining. This is a potential catastrophe for marine biodiversity, and use of Big Data will be needed to follow mining activities as well as chart impacts on known and unknown marine species and their habitats.
    • Knowledge, perceived risk, and attitudes towards COVID-19 protective measures amongst ethnic minorities in the UK: a cross-sectional study

      Cook, Erica Jane; Elliott, Elizabeth; Donald, Louisa; Gaitan, Alfredo; Randhawa, Gurch; Cartwright, Sally; Waqar, Muhammad; Egbutah, Chimeme; Nduka, Ifunanya; Guppy, Andy; et al. (Frontiers, 2023-01-13)
      Background: Minority ethnic groups are at increased risk of COVID-19 related mortality or morbidity yet continue to have a disproportionally lower uptake of the vaccine. The importance of adherence to prevention and control measures to keep vulnerable populations and their families safe therefore remains crucial. This research sought to examine the knowledge, perceived risk, and attitudes toward COVID-19 among an ethnically diverse community. Methods: A cross-sectional self-administered questionnaire was implemented to survey ethnic minority participants purposefully recruited from Luton, an ethnically diverse town in the southeast of England. The questionnaire was structured to assess participants knowledge, perceived risk, attitudes toward protective measures as well as the sources of information about COVID-19. The questionnaire was administered online via Qualtrics with the link shared through social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and WhatsApp. Questionnaires were also printed into brochures and disseminated via community researchers and community links to individuals alongside religious, community and outreach organisations. Data were analysed using appropriate statistical techniques, with the significance threshold for all analyses assumed at p = 0.05. Findings: 1,058 participants (634; 60% females) with a median age of 38 (IQR, 22) completed the survey. National TV and social networks were the most frequently accessed sources of COVID-19 related information; however, healthcare professionals, whilst not widely accessed, were viewed as the most trusted. Knowledge of transmission routes and perceived susceptibility were significant predictors of attitudes toward health-protective practises. Conclusion/recommendation: Improving the local information provision, including using tailored communication strategies that draw on trusted sources, including healthcare professionals, could facilitate understanding of risk and promote adherence to health-protective actions.
    • Can a chatbot enhance hazard awareness in the construction idustry?

      Zhu, Xiaoe; Li, Rita Yi Man; Crabbe, M. James C.; Sukpascharoena, Khunanan; ; Rajamangala University of Technology Tawan-Ok; Hong Kong Shue Yan University; Oxford University; University of Bedfordshire; Shanxi University (Frontiers, 2022-11-30)
      Safety training enhances hazard awareness in the construction industry. Its effectiveness is a component of occupational safety and health. While face-to-face safety training has dominated in the past, the frequent lockdowns during COVID-19 have led us to rethink new solutions. A chatbot is messaging software that allows people to interact, obtain answers, and handle sales and inquiries through a computer algorithm. While chatbots have been used for language education, no study has investigated their usefulness for hazard awareness enhancement after chatbot training. In this regard, we developed four Telegram chatbots for construction safety training and designed the experiment as the treatment factor. Previous researchers utilized eye-tracking in the laboratory for construction safety research; most have adopted it for qualitative analyses such as heat maps or gaze plots to study visual paths or search strategies via eye-trackers, which only studied the impact of one factor. Our research has utilized an artificial intelligence-based eye-tracking tool. As hazard awareness can be affected by several factors, we filled this research void using 2-way interaction terms using the design of experiment (DOE) model. We designed an eye-tracking experiment to study the impact of site experience, Telegram chatbot safety training, and task complexity on hazard awareness, which is the first of its kind. The results showed that Telegram chatbot training enhanced the hazard awareness of participants with less onsite experience and in less complex scenarios. Low-cost chatbot safety training could improve site workers’ danger awareness, but the design needs to be adjusted according to participants’ experience. Our results o􀀀er insights to construction safety managers in safety knowledge sharing and safety training.
    • Sedentary behaviour : a target for the prevention and management of cardiovascular disease

      Bell, Abbie C.; Richards, Joanna C.; Zakrzewski-Fruer, Julia K.; Smith, Lindsey Rachel; Bailey, Daniel Paul; ; University of Bedfordshire; Brunel University London (MDPI, 2022-12-28)
      Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is highly prevalent and can lead to disability and premature mortality. Sedentary behaviour, defined as a low energy expenditure while sitting or lying down, has been identified as an independent risk factor for CVD. This article discusses (1) the association of total sedentary time and patterns of accumulating sedentary time with CVD risk markers, CVD incidence and mortality; (2) acute experimental evidence regarding the acute effects of reducing and breaking up sedentary time on CVD risk markers; and (3) the effectiveness of longer-term sedentary behaviour interventions on CVD risk. Findings suggest that under rigorously controlled laboratory and free-living conditions, breaking up sedentary time improves cardiovascular risk markers in individuals who are healthy, overweight or obese, or have impaired cardiovascular health. Breaking up sedentary time with walking may have the most widespread benefits, whereas standing breaks may be less effective, especially in healthy individuals. There is also growing evidence that sedentary behaviour interventions may benefit cardiovascular risk in the longer term (i.e., weeks to months). Reducing and breaking up sedentary time may, therefore, be considered a target for preventing and managing CVD. Further research is needed to determine the effectiveness of sedentary behaviour interventions over the long-term to appropriately inform guidelines for the management of CVD. Keywords: sedentary behaviour; cardiovascular disease; prolonged sitting; cardiovascular risk markers
    • Changes in peak force output, rate of force development, and jump performance across a full season in elite English rugby union players

      Chrismas, Bryna C.; Fletcher, Iain M.; Hogben, Patrick; Qatar University; University of Bedfordshire (Sport Performance & Science Reports, 2020-03-31)
      Rugby union is a high-intensity invasion game characterised by contact events (most frequently the tackle and ruck). Success in key defining moments (i.e. tackle breaks, turnovers, scrums) in elite level rugby union is therefore largely dependent on technical characteristics, and physical qualities including strength and speed (1). Understanding changes in force characteristics across the full English professional rugby union season is therefore important for creating and monitoring strength and conditioning programmes. The aim of this study was to examine changes in force output, rate of force development (RFD), and jump performance across the full season in elite male English rugby union players.
    • Effects of active warm-up & warm-up massage on agility, perceived exertion & flexibility in tennis players

      Bedford, S.; Robbins, D.; Fletcher, Iain M. (Society for Tennis Medicine and Science, 2018-12-31)
    • The effects of kicking leg preference on balance ability in elite soccer players

      Fletcher, Iain M.; Long, Christopher S.; University of Bedfordshire (SciTechnol, 2013-07-15)
      with leg asymmetry linked to this injury occurrence. Screening for balance deficits is used as a predictor of potential injury; therefore the aim of this study was to determine whether static and dynamic balance differs in elite soccer players preferred kicking and nonpreferred kicking legs. Fifteen male professional soccer players were tested for static balance; standing on one leg, and dynamic balance, a hop and hold task and a kicking task. Balance ability was assessed by measuring centre of pressure deviation. Results indicated that static balance and hop and hold tests were not significantly different (p>0.05) when dominant and non-dominant kicking legs were compared. The kicking balance task indicated a significant increase (p≤0.05) in balance ability for the player’s nondominant limbs. Further, left sided players had significantly better (p≤0.05) dominant leg balance when compared to right sided players. These findings suggest that the static and dynamic balance tasks employed in this study were not specific enough to establish possible balance asymmetries in professional elite soccer players, while the passing dynamic balance test seems to be sensitive enough to show dominant and non-dominant leg discrepancies. It is therefore suggested that balance tasks, used to screen players, need to mimic the actions linked to injuries within soccer in order to explore dominant and non-dominant asymmetry.