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Educ. Sci., Volume 14, Issue 5 (May 2024) – 113 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): As artificial intelligence (AI) becomes increasingly integrated into educational technologies, teachers and students must acquire new forms of AI literacy, including an understanding of responsible use of AI. In this study, we explored tensions in the opinions of teachers and students regarding what constitutes learning and cheating using AI. By employing qualitative methods, we asked teachers and students to consider examples of how students might apply ChatGPT, rank them in order of how much they thought each student learned and cheated, and explain their rankings. Our findings revealed a wide range of opinions regarding learning and cheating using ChatGPT, and these were grounded in four recurring tensions. These findings challenge common notions of cheating and underscore the importance of the student voice in co-constructing norms associated with the responsible use of AI. View this paper
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11 pages, 483 KiB  
Article
Exploring Education as a Complex System: Computational Educational Research with Multi-Level Agent-Based Modeling
by John Vulic, Michael J. Jacobson and James A. Levin
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 551; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050551 - 20 May 2024
Viewed by 300
Abstract
Our study employs multi-level agent-based modeling and computational techniques to explore education as a complex system. With an underlying focus that education should be underpinned by a scientific understanding of student learning, we created computational models that simulated learning dynamics in classrooms, integrating [...] Read more.
Our study employs multi-level agent-based modeling and computational techniques to explore education as a complex system. With an underlying focus that education should be underpinned by a scientific understanding of student learning, we created computational models that simulated learning dynamics in classrooms, integrating both quantitative and qualitative insights. Through these models, we conducted experiments aligned with real classroom data to address key questions, such as “How can we effectively support the academic progress of underperforming students, who are disproportionately from low socio-economic status (SES) backgrounds, to close their multi-year achievement gap in mathematics?” Our study analyzes various instructional approaches for mathematical learning, and our findings highlight the potential effectiveness of Productive Failure as an instructional approach. Considerations of the broader applicability of computational methods in advancing educational research are also provided. Full article
20 pages, 378 KiB  
Article
Initial Assessment of First Language Literacy Resources for Adult Instruction in Swedish
by Eva Lindström and Maria Eklund Heinonen
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 550; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050550 - 20 May 2024
Viewed by 229
Abstract
This study is part of a project on initial assessment of first language (L1) literacy in adult newcomers prior to the commencement of L2 studies in Swedish. Here, we explore the assessment summaries of newcomers’ L1 literacy, performed by L2-teachers, with assistance from [...] Read more.
This study is part of a project on initial assessment of first language (L1) literacy in adult newcomers prior to the commencement of L2 studies in Swedish. Here, we explore the assessment summaries of newcomers’ L1 literacy, performed by L2-teachers, with assistance from an interpreter. According to the syllabus, instruction in Swedish for Immigrants (SFI) should be adapted to the individual´s needs and goals; however, SFI often fails to do so. L1 literacy—i.e., using texts in different domains (school, work, society, and everyday life)—serves as a foundation for L2 learning and teachers’ access to and utilization of students L1 literacy can significantly enhance instruction. From a sociocultural approach to literacy and based on Luke and Freebody’s ‘Four Resource Model’, a qualitative document analyses of L1 literacy assessment summaries (N=50) demonstrated literacy practices form different domains of student life, beyond school literacy. Literacy practices from all four learner roles, i.e., Code-Breaker, Text Participant, Text User and Text Analyst were identified in the assessments to various degrees dependent on the students’ background, which is illustrated by a close analysis of 5 summaries. This information is both important for teachers’ planning of second language teaching and in the long term for the development of second language teacher education. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Second Language Learning: Theories and Practices)
28 pages, 4167 KiB  
Article
To Test or Not to Test? The Graduate Record Examinations: Predictive Validity toward Graduate Study Success on Research Masters’ Programs in a Large European University
by Anastasia Kurysheva, Gönül Dilaver, Christine Merie Fox, Harrison Kell, Matthias Robert Kern and Harold V. M. van Rijen
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 549; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050549 - 20 May 2024
Viewed by 286
Abstract
Graduate admissions committees in Europe have a challenging task of selecting students from an increasingly large pool of candidates with diverse application files. Graduate standardized testing can ease the comparison of application files. The purpose of this study was to examine whether the [...] Read more.
Graduate admissions committees in Europe have a challenging task of selecting students from an increasingly large pool of candidates with diverse application files. Graduate standardized testing can ease the comparison of application files. The purpose of this study was to examine whether the Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) is predictive of several dimensions of graduate success on English-taught research masters’ programs in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics at a large European university. The data from 167 masters’ students were collected. Hierarchical regression analyses were conducted. All GRE scales predicted Graduate Grade Point Average. Individual GRE scales predicted internship grade and supervisors’ assessments of students’ research performance and the content of their research report. None of the individual GRE scales predicted supervisors’ assessments of students’ practical skills, but the three GRE scales taken together improved the explanatory power of the model. The structure and style of students’ research reports was not predicted by the GRE. All relationships were held after accounting for socioeconomic status. Overall, the GRE appeared as a reasonable predictor of graduate study success. Both the benefits and drawbacks of the implementation of the GRE in European masters’ programs are discussed, as well as the legal limitations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section STEM Education)
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12 pages, 1629 KiB  
Article
Using Synchronized Eye Movements to Predict Attention in Online Video Learning
by Caizhen Su, Xingyu Liu, Xinru Gan and Hang Zeng
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 548; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050548 - 19 May 2024
Viewed by 298
Abstract
Concerns persist about attentional engagement in online learning. The inter-subject correlation of eye movements (ISC) has shown promise as an accessible and effective method for attention assessment in online learning. This study extends previous studies investigating ISC of eye movements in online learning [...] Read more.
Concerns persist about attentional engagement in online learning. The inter-subject correlation of eye movements (ISC) has shown promise as an accessible and effective method for attention assessment in online learning. This study extends previous studies investigating ISC of eye movements in online learning by addressing two research questions. Firstly, can ISC predict students’ attentional states at a finer level beyond a simple dichotomy of attention states (e.g., attending and distracted states)? Secondly, whether learners’ learning styles affect ISC’s prediction rate of attention assessment in video learning? Previous studies have shown that learners of different learning styles have different eye movement patterns when viewing static materials. However, limited research has explored the impact of learning styles on viewing patterns in video learning. An eye tracking experiment with participants watching lecture videos demonstrated a connection between ISC and self-reported attention states at a finer level. We also demonstrated that learning styles did not significantly affect ISC’s prediction rate of attention assessment in video learning, suggesting that ISC of eye movements can be effectively used without considering learners’ learning styles. These findings contribute to the ongoing discourse on optimizing attention assessment in the evolving landscape of online education. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Education and Psychology)
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13 pages, 238 KiB  
Article
How Can the University Environment Support Student Quality of Life? A Novel Conceptual Model
by Alyson Lamont Dodd, Georgia Punton, Joanna Mary Averill McLaren, Elizabeth Sillence and Nicola Byrom
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 547; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050547 - 17 May 2024
Viewed by 371
Abstract
During emerging adulthood (18–25 years), university students have taken steps towards independent living and learning. However, they are also in a liminal phase before the ‘stable roles’ of adulthood. This developmental context distinguishes them from both adolescents and peers who are not attending [...] Read more.
During emerging adulthood (18–25 years), university students have taken steps towards independent living and learning. However, they are also in a liminal phase before the ‘stable roles’ of adulthood. This developmental context distinguishes them from both adolescents and peers who are not attending university. In order to support student well-being, their unique priorities and concerns need to be taken into consideration. This qualitative study explored what life domains were important to students, and what influenced Quality of Life (QoL) within these, in order to build a novel conceptual model of student QoL. Individual interviews (n = 18) were conducted with undergraduate students (aged 18–25 years). The themes derived via Template Analysis were Supportive and Rewarding University Studies, Personal Growth, Social Support, Concerns about Finances and Financial Independence, Physical Environment, Physical and Mental Well-being, and Maintaining Balance. As well as conceptualising QoL in students, this model has practical value for operationalising student QoL. It is a framework to help universities to understand the needs and priorities of students and provide well-being initiatives in line with these needs. Full article
27 pages, 766 KiB  
Article
The Effects of Attending High Individual and Collective Teacher Efficacy Schools on Ninth Grade On-Track
by Vandeen A. Campbell, Meril Antony, Jessica Zulawski and Kristen Foley
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 546; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050546 - 17 May 2024
Viewed by 250
Abstract
Ninth grade on-track is predictive of high school graduation, more than race, socio-economic status, and prior achievement combined. Although initiatives characterized by an intense focus on the ninth-grade year are being increasingly implemented, research has not fully documented and tested mechanisms linked to [...] Read more.
Ninth grade on-track is predictive of high school graduation, more than race, socio-economic status, and prior achievement combined. Although initiatives characterized by an intense focus on the ninth-grade year are being increasingly implemented, research has not fully documented and tested mechanisms linked to improved outcomes. Using survey and transcript-level data and causal mediation analysis, this study tests the effects of students attending high teacher efficacy (self and collective—TSE and CTE) schools on ninth grade on-track in an urban school district in a northeast state in the United States. It further examines the extent to which ambitious instructional practices, defined as culturally relevant and transformative pedagogy, mediate the effects of TSE on ninth grade on-track and how levels of supportive school culture moderate these relationships. The findings indicate that urban ninth-graders attending schools with high TSE and CTE are more likely to be on track at the end of ninth grade. Additionally, the direct effect of students attending a school with high TSE was mediated by the level of ambitious instruction. We discuss implications for teacher education (TE) and professional development. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Making Our Way: Rethinking and Disrupting Teacher Education)
23 pages, 279 KiB  
Article
Understanding School Leadership’s Influence on Teacher Retention in High-Poverty Settings: An Exploratory Study in the U.S.
by Chad R. Lochmiller, Frank Perrone and Chris Finley
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 545; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050545 - 17 May 2024
Viewed by 340
Abstract
Research has identified principal leadership as one of the most salient school-level predictors of teacher retention. However, the survey-based quantitative nature and specific survey questions used in this research make it difficult to discern which leadership behaviors or approaches contribute most to teacher [...] Read more.
Research has identified principal leadership as one of the most salient school-level predictors of teacher retention. However, the survey-based quantitative nature and specific survey questions used in this research make it difficult to discern which leadership behaviors or approaches contribute most to teacher retention. As a result, school leaders and those responsible for preparing and/or employing them lack clear, research-based information about specific practices that could be effectively utilized, particularly in high-poverty schools. This qualitative case study, set in a high-poverty U. S. elementary school with high retention rates, utilized Simon and Johnson’s (2015) framework of how principal behaviors that increase teacher retention in the quantitative research are exhibited in under-resourced schools. The study generates qualitative understandings of how a principal’s actions contributed to retention by reaffirming a mission to serve high-poverty students, recognizing teachers for their work, developing and fostering within-faculty relationships, strengthening relationships with families, and providing disciplinary support. In doing so, the study also provides support for an existing framework for leading for retention and insights into how these actions may influence or be seen in survey responses used in survey-based research. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Educational Leadership in School Improvement)
35 pages, 3573 KiB  
Article
The Academic System Influence on Instructional Change: A Conceptual Systems Dynamics Model of Faculty Motivation to Adopt Research-Based Instructional Strategies (RBIS)
by Juan Manuel Cruz-Bohorquez, Stephanie G. Adams and Flor Angela Bravo
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 544; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050544 - 17 May 2024
Viewed by 297
Abstract
Many universities have implemented initiatives to drive instructional change, yet their success has often been limited due to a lack of recognition of academia as a complex dynamic system. This paper explores how the interconnected and dynamic nature of academic systems influences faculty [...] Read more.
Many universities have implemented initiatives to drive instructional change, yet their success has often been limited due to a lack of recognition of academia as a complex dynamic system. This paper explores how the interconnected and dynamic nature of academic systems influences faculty motivation to adopt instructional innovations, such as project-based learning (PBL) and small group collaborations (SGCs). We present a Conceptual Systems Dynamics Model (CSDM) that illustrates these interconnections, demonstrating how systemic factors create feedback loops that either reinforce or hinder faculty motivation, as well as other related factors. These loops, represented as Causal Loop Diagrams (CLDs), were derived from literature reviews and qualitative data obtained from interviews and focus groups involving 17 faculty and administrators within an Engineering Department at a research university in South America. The paper identifies thirteen CLDs, comprising seven reinforcing dynamics that positively influence faculty motivation and six balancing dynamics that exert negative pressure. Using empirical evidence and analysis, we describe how the systemic factors influence faculty motivation, and how shifts in motivation reciprocally impact these interconnected factors. By elucidating the complex dynamics at play, this research contributes to a deeper understanding of how to promote sustainable instructional change within academic institutions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Challenges of Project Based Learning (PBL) in Engineering Education)
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17 pages, 930 KiB  
Article
Annotating Throughout or Annotating Afterward: Preservice Teachers’ Experiences with the ANNOTO Hyper-Video in Blended Learning
by Liat Biberman-Shalev
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 543; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050543 - 17 May 2024
Viewed by 305
Abstract
This study aims to explore the perspectives of pre-service teachers (PSTs) regarding their experiences with the ANNOTO personal note feature within a blended learning (BL) context. Employing qualitative research methods, the analysis incorporates reflections from 45 PSTs, insights derived from two focus groups, [...] Read more.
This study aims to explore the perspectives of pre-service teachers (PSTs) regarding their experiences with the ANNOTO personal note feature within a blended learning (BL) context. Employing qualitative research methods, the analysis incorporates reflections from 45 PSTs, insights derived from two focus groups, and data gathered through semi-structured interviews. The objective is to comprehend how PSTs engaged with ANNOTO’s personal note during their learning experiences and how they perceived its role in shaping their professional development. The findings underscore a predominantly positive experience among PSTs, with their perceptions linked to heightened motivation and meaningful learning. Additionally, the study identified three distinct annotating styles—annotating throughout watching, annotating after watching, and a combination of both—each associated with enhanced concentration, memory prompting, and improved writing skills. Furthermore, PSTs articulated professional insights related to teacher and student agency, encompassing themes such as the use of video as a teaching tool, active learning, self-directed learning, scaffolding, critical thinking, and temporal considerations aligned with students’ needs. The principal implications center on the necessity of engaging in discussions with PSTs regarding the integration of hyper-video and the pedagogical approaches it may endorse. Full article
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19 pages, 669 KiB  
Article
Development and Validation of Perception of Wisdom Exploratory Rating Scale: An Instrument to Examine Teachers’ Perceptions of Wisdom
by Sareh Karami, Andy Parra-Martinez, Mehdi Ghahremani and Marcia Gentry
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 542; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050542 - 17 May 2024
Viewed by 388
Abstract
The purpose of this study was to develop and validate the Perception of Wisdom Exploratory Rating Scale based on the Polyhedron Model of Wisdom (PMW). A total number of 585 responses from in-service and preservice teachers was collected. In the EFA, the items [...] Read more.
The purpose of this study was to develop and validate the Perception of Wisdom Exploratory Rating Scale based on the Polyhedron Model of Wisdom (PMW). A total number of 585 responses from in-service and preservice teachers was collected. In the EFA, the items fit a seven-factor structure, producing the following subscales: knowledge management, self-regulation, moral maturity, openness, tolerance, sound judgment, and creative thinking. CFA was performed to test the construct validity of the scale. The model produced a good fit to the data (χ2/df = 1.67, CFI = 0.92, TLI = 0.91, RMSEA = 0.049, and SRMR = 0.06). With continued testing and revisions, this instrument could be useful for the cross-cultural comparison of perceptions of wisdom and identification of barriers to promoting wisdom instruction. Full article
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28 pages, 650 KiB  
Article
Promoting Sustainability Together with Parents in Early Childhood Education
by Pilvi Sihvonen, Riikka Lappalainen, Jaana Herranen and Maija Aksela
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 541; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050541 - 16 May 2024
Viewed by 510
Abstract
This multimethod study investigated an environmental recycling project in a Finnish kindergarten group, tailored for children aged 4 to 6, as part of early childhood environmental education for sustainable development. We aimed to identify the main drivers of sustainable lifestyles in the families [...] Read more.
This multimethod study investigated an environmental recycling project in a Finnish kindergarten group, tailored for children aged 4 to 6, as part of early childhood environmental education for sustainable development. We aimed to identify the main drivers of sustainable lifestyles in the families of kindergarten children and evaluate the project’s effective practices. We utilized a qualitative approach using interviews with parents and feedback from teachers and employed the Following a Thread approach alongside inductive thematic analysis. The results highlight the crucial role of Finland’s socio-cultural context, including the emphasis on free play in natural settings and the encouragement of exploration under gentle guidance, in fostering sustainable behaviors among children. Additionally, the parents’ strong environmental sensitivity was manifested in their will to engage with their surrounding community to promote sustainability. The results underscore the importance of collaboration between parents and educators in promoting environmental awareness from an early age. The study advocates for policy changes to ensure that children and teachers have access to natural environments during day care, suggesting that integrating free play in nature with hands-on recycling activities can significantly contribute to sustainable education. Moreover, this topic should be further investigated in different living environments. Full article
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14 pages, 2585 KiB  
Article
A Proof-of-Concept of an Integrated VR and AI Application to Develop Classroom Management Competencies in Teachers in Training
by Margreet W. Docter, Tamara N.D. de Vries, Huu Dat Nguyen and Hanno van Keulen
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 540; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050540 - 16 May 2024
Viewed by 507
Abstract
We designed an interactive virtual reality (VR) application to provide a controlled and yet unpredictable environment for the development of classroom management skills. The simulated environment allows teachers in training to interact with virtual students in realistic and meaningful ways. The VR application [...] Read more.
We designed an interactive virtual reality (VR) application to provide a controlled and yet unpredictable environment for the development of classroom management skills. The simulated environment allows teachers in training to interact with virtual students in realistic and meaningful ways. The VR application allows rich verbal interaction by using artificial intelligence (AI). Initial findings suggest it is a successful proof of concept. In this paper, we focus on the technical implementation. Predictions on educational effectiveness and the educational challenges of pre-service teacher education are discussed. Future developments include rigorous testing and incorporating non-verbal communication based on a multi-dimensional interpersonal behavior model. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Teaching and Learning with Virtual/Augmented Reality)
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18 pages, 1917 KiB  
Article
Policy Instrument Preferences and Optimization Strategies: Based Text Analysis of Provincial-Level Education Digitalization Policy from China
by Jing Cao, Chunmei Yu and Yan Wu
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 539; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050539 - 16 May 2024
Viewed by 264
Abstract
In the context of world education digitalization, the Chinese government has formulated China’s education digitalization strategy. The education digitalization policy tools of provincial governments are an important factor affecting the effectiveness of education digitalization policies. In this study, a text quantification and content [...] Read more.
In the context of world education digitalization, the Chinese government has formulated China’s education digitalization strategy. The education digitalization policy tools of provincial governments are an important factor affecting the effectiveness of education digitalization policies. In this study, a text quantification and content analysis is conducted on educational digital policy documents released by eight provinces of China during the 14th Five-Year Plan period in China. This is based on a two-dimensional analysis framework of “instruments-value” using instrument types and policy principles, and NVivo software. The research outcomes reveal the following: (1) The distribution of educational digital policy instrument types is uneven, with an excess of supply-side instruments and a noticeable shortage of demand-side instruments. (2) Different policy instruments exhibit varying degrees of preference in implementing policy principles. There is a stronger emphasis on technology application and balanced development, while the emphasis on service principles promoting diverse participation is relatively weaker. (3) The policy instruments that facilitate interaction between policymakers and educational entities require further strengthening. In light of these findings, local governments in China should strengthen the use of demand-side policy instruments to achieve comprehensiveness and sustainability in educational digitalization. Policymakers should pay more attention to the demands of educational entities to shift educational digitalization from being technology driven to being demand driven. Furthermore, policy instrument selection should adhere to the value of serving and supporting individuals and reinforce the concept of multi-participation in their development, ultimately improving the precision and coordination of policies, and achieving a harmonious integration of technological and value aspects of policy instruments. Full article
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27 pages, 741 KiB  
Article
Teaching Biology Lessons Using Digital Technology: A Contextualized Mixed-Methods Study on Pre-Service Biology Teachers’ Enacted TPACK
by Alexander Aumann, Stefanie Schnebel and Holger Weitzel
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 538; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050538 - 16 May 2024
Viewed by 266
Abstract
Pre-service biology teachers must apply Technological Pedagogical and Content Knowledge (TPACK) acquired at university in real classroom situations to utilize the instructional potential of digital technologies for teaching biology. So far, there is little evidence on how pre-service biology teachers translate TPACK into [...] Read more.
Pre-service biology teachers must apply Technological Pedagogical and Content Knowledge (TPACK) acquired at university in real classroom situations to utilize the instructional potential of digital technologies for teaching biology. So far, there is little evidence on how pre-service biology teachers translate TPACK into teaching practice. The present study addresses this gap by accompanying 42 pre-service biology teachers in planning, implementing, and reflecting on a biology lesson as part of their internship semester at school. Data were collected via written lesson plans, videotaped lesson observations, and stimulated-recall reflection interviews and evaluated by applying a sequential explanatory mixed-method design. The results indicate that pre-service biology teachers enact their TPACK by focusing on technology with the content of the subject receding into the background. In addition, pre-service biology teachers focus particularly on aspects that serve to structure the lesson, rather than on aspects of student activation. The use of emerging technologies in the classroom seems to lead to insecurity among pre-service biology teachers for various reasons, whereby surface characteristics and structuring lesson aspects are focused. Within the sample, we can distinguish between two types of TPACK enactment: the split-focus type separates between content and technology, whereas the novelty-focus type systematically links content and technology, utilizing the technology as a tool for subject teaching. Full article
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10 pages, 1547 KiB  
Review
Housing the Teacher Workforce: A Scoping Review
by Lauren Medlin, Scott Eacott, Catherine Gilbert, Katrina MacDonald and Christopher J. Pettit
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 537; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050537 - 16 May 2024
Viewed by 490
Abstract
Globally, education systems are faced with dual workforce crises: a shortage of teachers and a lack of affordable housing. Attracting and retaining teachers through improved renumeration, working conditions, and quality preparation have been central. However, initiatives to attract and retain teachers mean little [...] Read more.
Globally, education systems are faced with dual workforce crises: a shortage of teachers and a lack of affordable housing. Attracting and retaining teachers through improved renumeration, working conditions, and quality preparation have been central. However, initiatives to attract and retain teachers mean little if the workforce cannot find appropriate (quality and affordable) housing within commuting distance to their workplaces. The present study undertakes a scoping review of research on the intersection of housing and the school education workforce. Specifically, we examine the volume, variety, and characteristics of evidence through the question of ‘What empirical studies have been published on the relationship between housing and the school education workforce?’ Online databases were used to identify 23 studies published in 2000–2024 from Australia, China, England, Kenya, Malaysia, New Zealand, Tanzania, Uganda, the UK, and the USA. Publications drew on a range of methods and housing was rarely the focal unit of analysis. This study finds that beyond establishing unaffordability through salary and housing costs ratios, and the peripheral inclusion of housing issues in studies, there is insufficient published peer reviewed evidence available to purposefully inform and measure interventions. Greater interdisciplinarity is required in research to highlight the complexity of issues at the intersection of housing (availability, affordability, and distance from workplaces) and workforce distribution. More rigorous data should be collected to support robust reporting on the state of housing for the school education workforce to deliver the type of evidence necessary to develop targeted and tailored interventions to improve outcomes for the workforce and ultimately students. Full article
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23 pages, 11361 KiB  
Article
On the Use of an Online Polling Platform for Enhancing Student Engagement in an Engineering Module
by Abdollah Malekjafarian and Meisam Gordan
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 536; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050536 - 16 May 2024
Viewed by 315
Abstract
Students’ engagement is a fundamental challenge in large classrooms in higher education. In recent years, innovative technologies such as electronic learning and online polling platforms have made learning more engaging, effective, and interactive. By using these platforms, educators can create more inclusive and [...] Read more.
Students’ engagement is a fundamental challenge in large classrooms in higher education. In recent years, innovative technologies such as electronic learning and online polling platforms have made learning more engaging, effective, and interactive. By using these platforms, educators can create more inclusive and enriching learning environments. This paper presents a novel approach in which an online technology is employed to enhance students’ learning experience. In this approach, features of an online polling platform, i.e., Slido, are employed to enhance students’ engagement in an engineering module, i.e., ‘Mechanics of Solids’, which is recognised as a fundamentally challenging module with difficult subjects. This study investigates how the interactive features of such technologies, such as real-time polls, question and answer (Q&A) sessions, and quizzes, can provide a more active and practical learning environment by improving student engagement in the classroom. In total, six online polls were designed: one for ice-breaking, two on the topics of shear forces and bending moment, two on stresses, and one on deflection. Each poll was presented to the students, and they participated in them by scanning a QR code or typing the poll’s code online. The rate of students’ participation in polls is extensively discussed to show the effectiveness of the proposed method. The findings of this study show a significant increase in student participation in classroom activities compared to traditional methods. Student feedback also indicates a positive learning experience with the use of the proposed approach. It is shown that the proposed approach has the potential to transform the way engineering students engage with challenging subjects, leading to enhanced learning outcomes and a more positive learning experience. Full article
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21 pages, 311 KiB  
Essay
Revisiting Male Allies in Mathematics and Physics Throughout History: Role Models for Men in STEM Education
by Encina Calvo-Iglesias and Irene Epifanio
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 535; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050535 - 16 May 2024
Viewed by 622
Abstract
In the academic world, there are also gender inequalities, which are especially visible in certain masculinized STEM areas, such as physics and mathematics. An essential factor in correcting these inequalities is the involvement of men, who should act as “allies” in the university [...] Read more.
In the academic world, there are also gender inequalities, which are especially visible in certain masculinized STEM areas, such as physics and mathematics. An essential factor in correcting these inequalities is the involvement of men, who should act as “allies” in the university setting. Likewise, as the literature shows us, we must offer models with gender-incongruent roles to break down stereotypes and promote non-traditional behaviors. However, to date, these actions have been especially directed toward women, who generally do not hold power and therefore have less possibility of promoting change. For the first time, this work compiles, in a single document, important male physicists and mathematicians who acted as allies of women throughout history. These examples can be presented to provide male references in the teaching of physics and mathematics at university (and high school). With this initiative, we intend to contribute to incorporating the gender perspective in university teaching, since, in practice, university professors are unaware of references of alternative masculinities in the academic world. We hope that this article will be the seed to recover hidden male allies in these and other scientific fields. This can help break down stereotypes, and contrary to previous actions, this work is especially directed toward men. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Higher Education)
12 pages, 192 KiB  
Article
Why Do Vocational High School Students Opt for College?
by Wonseok Seo and Changhoon Lee
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 534; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050534 - 15 May 2024
Viewed by 327
Abstract
This study aims to elucidate how—and the underlying significance of their doing so—Korean vocational high school students decide to pursue university education rather than entering the workforce. Drawing on autoethnographic journals, the research employs a combination of Chang’s descriptive-realistic, confessional-emotive, and analytical-interpretive writing [...] Read more.
This study aims to elucidate how—and the underlying significance of their doing so—Korean vocational high school students decide to pursue university education rather than entering the workforce. Drawing on autoethnographic journals, the research employs a combination of Chang’s descriptive-realistic, confessional-emotive, and analytical-interpretive writing methods to convey personal experiences, including the background of students and their motivations for opting for university. As an autoethnographer, I have encountered the societal perceptions of Korean vocational high schools, issues with school curricula, and misunderstandings surrounding employment. Over time, I chronicled the documented process of choosing university education, and this has been facilitated by conversations with the homeroom teacher; I have endeavored to elucidate the sociocultural implications of each student’s experience through interpretive methods. This study’s findings are anticipated to enhance the understanding of the fundamentals of career education in the realm of secondary vocational education and to offer a valuable reference for vocational high school educators on how to guide their students effectively. Furthermore, it should provide educational perspectives and fresh insights for vocational educators and researchers worldwide, thereby facilitating enhancements in career education policies and systems for vocational students. Full article
14 pages, 228 KiB  
Article
What Are the Important Qualities and Abilities of Future Doctors? A Nationwide Attitude Survey in Japan
by Junji Otaki, Yoko Watanabe, Yoshimi Harada and Hiroshi Mitoma
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 533; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050533 - 14 May 2024
Viewed by 273
Abstract
What qualities and abilities are appropriate for a person who plans to become a doctor? To answer this question, it is meaningful to understand the opinions of the general public, since they are important stakeholders in the training of doctors. As part of [...] Read more.
What qualities and abilities are appropriate for a person who plans to become a doctor? To answer this question, it is meaningful to understand the opinions of the general public, since they are important stakeholders in the training of doctors. As part of a national door-to-door questionnaire survey, participants were asked about 16 qualities and abilities they considered suitable for becoming a doctor. Of the 1200 people interviewed, 1190 responded. The ratio of affirmative answers was the highest (92.2%) for the “Accurately judges situations” element, followed by “Cares about others’ feelings” (87.4%), “Understands the reality of medical care and welfare” (87.2%), and “Resistant to mental stress” (86.2%). “High academic ability”, which is currently the most important factor in the actual selection of students, ranked ninth among the sixteen elements (71.8%). Aside from academic ability, the general public places importance on other factors in selecting students for admission to medical schools. This study provides a valuable reference for medical schools regarding admission policies and applicant selection processes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Assessment and Evaluation in Higher Education—Series 3)
3 pages, 148 KiB  
Editorial
International Perspectives on Inclusion in Education: Exploring Common Ground from Different Angles
by Juho Honkasilta and Athanasios Koutsoklenis
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 532; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050532 - 14 May 2024
Viewed by 354
Abstract
Inclusion in education is a globally shared principle, and its aim is to guarantee, secure, and promote the equality and equity of all people by removing barriers to learning and social participation [...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue International Perspectives on Inclusion in Education)
18 pages, 1961 KiB  
Article
Exploring Decision-Making Competence in Sugar-Substitute Choices: A Cross-Disciplinary Investigation among Chemistry and Sports and Health Students
by Carlo Dindorf, Fabienne Weisenburger, Eva Bartaguiz, Jonas Dully, Luisa Klappenberger, Vanessa Lang, Lisa Zimmermann, Michael Fröhlich and Johann-Nikolaus Seibert
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 531; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050531 - 14 May 2024
Viewed by 306
Abstract
Interdisciplinary teaching approaches have gained significant importance in today’s educational landscape. Among these approaches, decision-making competence plays a pivotal role by nurturing critical thinking and problem-solving skills. Focusing on the decision-making process regarding the sensibility of using sugar-substitutes, this study addresses three key [...] Read more.
Interdisciplinary teaching approaches have gained significant importance in today’s educational landscape. Among these approaches, decision-making competence plays a pivotal role by nurturing critical thinking and problem-solving skills. Focusing on the decision-making process regarding the sensibility of using sugar-substitutes, this study addresses three key questions. (1) Do chemistry and sports and health students differ in evaluation-competence? (2) What criteria do they use in evaluating the decision-making problem? (3) How do they use ChatGPT (OpenAI, San Francisco, CA, USA), an AI tool, in decision-making? Through surveys, the study revealed two evaluation-competence factors, identified decision-making criteria, and analyzed querying behavior using ChatGPT. The results revealed nuanced differences between the two student groups in the factors of evaluation-competence. While both groups showed improvements in recognizing moral dimensions and considering alternatives, chemistry students displayed enhanced abilities in establishing evaluation criteria and empathetic thinking. Furthermore, differences emerged in the criteria selected for decision-making and querying behavior, indicating varying engagement with ChatGPT. This study offers insights into enhancing interdisciplinary education and underscores the need for tailored interventions to address diverse student needs. Full article
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19 pages, 1710 KiB  
Article
ChatGPT-Generated and Student-Written Historical Narratives: A Comparative Analysis
by Björn Kindenberg
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 530; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050530 - 13 May 2024
Viewed by 432
Abstract
This study investigates alternative approaches for demonstrating historical understanding in elementary school history education, motivated by challenges to educational institutions posed by increased ChatGPT-related plagiarism. Focused on secondary education, an area with scant research, this study, through sociocultural and linguistic methods of analysis, [...] Read more.
This study investigates alternative approaches for demonstrating historical understanding in elementary school history education, motivated by challenges to educational institutions posed by increased ChatGPT-related plagiarism. Focused on secondary education, an area with scant research, this study, through sociocultural and linguistic methods of analysis, contrasted human-generated historical narratives with those produced by ChatGPT. It was found that ChatGPT’s narratives, while stylistically superior, lacked emotional depth, highlighting a key differentiation from human storytelling. However, despite this differentiation, ChatGPT otherwise effectively mimicked typical discourse patterns of historical storytelling, suggesting that narrative-based writing assignments do not significantly reduce the likelihood of ChatGPT-assisted plagiarism. The study concludes by suggesting that rather than focusing on mitigating plagiarism, educational approaches to ChatGPT should seek to channel its potential for historical narratives into assistance with task design, delivery of content, and coaching student writing. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Artificial Intelligence for Education)
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16 pages, 1593 KiB  
Article
Practices Promoting the Inclusion of Adult Students with Disabilities in the Classroom: A Case of a Technical Vocational Education and Training College in Kazakhstan
by Arman Assanbayev and Tsediso Michael Makoelle
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 529; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050529 - 13 May 2024
Viewed by 514
Abstract
Kazakhstan’s government has launched many policy reforms to enhance the well-being of its underrepresented citizens and develop human capital by providing education to all. Therefore, the government has adopted a policy on inclusive education and recognised the rights to education of all learners, [...] Read more.
Kazakhstan’s government has launched many policy reforms to enhance the well-being of its underrepresented citizens and develop human capital by providing education to all. Therefore, the government has adopted a policy on inclusive education and recognised the rights to education of all learners, including those with disabilities, based on equal opportunity, without any discrimination. This aims to facilitate equal access to lifelong education opportunities, including in Technical Vocational Education Training Institutes (TVETIs). Thus, inclusive education in TVET settings and lifelong learning, especially for adults with special needs, has become an educational priority in Kazakhstan. Therefore, this collaborative action research study intended to explore classroom practices promoting the inclusion of adult students with disabilities at Kazakhstani Technical Vocational Education and Training Institutions (TVETIs). Qualitative data were collected through reflective journals, student focus-group interviews, documentary analysis, and reflective meetings of the professional learning group of selected teachers and students during the four stages of collaborative action research (CAR). Data were analysed through group interpretative meetings by the research team and inductive thematic content analysis by the researcher. Among the findings is that the educative process in TVETIs does not sufficiently provide reasonable inclusive support for adult students with disabilities. As a result, a comprehensive review of inclusive practices in these institutions was critical. This paper discusses some practices that could promote inclusion in TVET classrooms. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cultivating Inclusive Classrooms: Practices in Special Education)
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18 pages, 836 KiB  
Article
Supporting Sustainable and User-Oriented Educational Technology Innovation with the University Innovation Canvas
by Mia Bangerl, Sebastian Dennerlein, Katharina Maitz, Marie Nitschke, Martin Ebner and Viktoria Pammer-Schindler
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 528; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050528 - 13 May 2024
Viewed by 467
Abstract
Innovating higher education teaching and learning is challenging due to structural, cultural, and resource-related reasons, and research indicates that university innovation benefits from a bottom-up approach as well as strategic alignment with university objectives. In this paper, we investigate such bottom-up innovation processes [...] Read more.
Innovating higher education teaching and learning is challenging due to structural, cultural, and resource-related reasons, and research indicates that university innovation benefits from a bottom-up approach as well as strategic alignment with university objectives. In this paper, we investigate such bottom-up innovation processes within higher education as supported by a specific tool: the University Innovation Canvas (UIC). Adapted from the Business Model Canvas and Lean Canvas, the UIC is designed to promote educational technology innovation and foster alignment of the innovation process with strategic objectives of the university: namely, sustainability and user orientation. An evaluation of the UIC based on interview and questionnaire data shows that its usage differs between innovation teams (on paper vs. digital, individual vs. collaborative, co-located vs. remotely, and synchronous vs. asynchronous). UIC usability is linked with these differences and with teams’ experience in realizing innovations. Overall, the UIC is perceived to be useful by (particularly, less-experienced) innovation teams and is successful at supporting sustainable and user-oriented innovations, as 14/15 innovations are still in use after up to four years since completion. To maximize its potential, more effort needs to be devoted to improving understanding of the UIC and supporting different workflows of innovation teams in the future. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Digital Learning Innovation)
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10 pages, 263 KiB  
Article
Factors Affecting Autistic Students’ School Motivation
by Chandra Lebenhagen and Jaclyn Dynia
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 527; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050527 - 13 May 2024
Viewed by 360
Abstract
Very little identifiable research explores the factors impacting autistic students’ school motivation and how these factors may or may not affect their academic and well-being outcomes in secondary school and beyond, including post-secondary enrollment, employment, and their quality of life. Instead, research on [...] Read more.
Very little identifiable research explores the factors impacting autistic students’ school motivation and how these factors may or may not affect their academic and well-being outcomes in secondary school and beyond, including post-secondary enrollment, employment, and their quality of life. Instead, research on autism and inclusive education mainly focuses on the efficacy of interventions aimed at teaching skills related to sensory, communication, social, and behavior. Methods: A secondary analysis of survey data from an original mixed-method study was conducted to investigate how environmental, teacher, and peer factors are associated with autistic students’ school motivation. Eligible participants were between the ages of 15 and 21. In total, 72 participants (n = 72) completed an online survey to share their perspectives on their school experiences. Subsequently, linear regression analysis was conducted to answer the research question. Results: Participants who rated their schools as having pleasant physical spaces and felt that their peers understood them as a person had higher levels of school motivation. Teachers were not found to be significantly related to students’ school motivation. Participants who shared that typing was their preferred mode of communication were less motivated to attend school than students who preferred speaking communication. Conclusions: Environmental and peer factors are related to more than the day-to-day school experiences of autistic students; they are also related to their school motivation. These findings add to the existing literature on inclusive education and positive school outcomes for autistic students and offer additional explanations of the barriers that affect autistic students’ graduation from secondary school and interest in attending post-secondary education. Full article
13 pages, 277 KiB  
Article
Examining the Relationship between Emotional Intelligence, Achievement Motivation, and Self-Efficacy among Pre-Service Teachers in Türkiye
by Umran Atik, Mehmet Akif Karaman and Halil Ibrahim Sari
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 526; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050526 - 13 May 2024
Viewed by 353
Abstract
The main goal of this study was to examine the extent to which the demographic characteristics of pre-service teachers (gender, family management style, family educational status, size of the family) predict their emotional intelligence (EI) scores through achievement motivation (AMO) and Self-Efficacy (SE) [...] Read more.
The main goal of this study was to examine the extent to which the demographic characteristics of pre-service teachers (gender, family management style, family educational status, size of the family) predict their emotional intelligence (EI) scores through achievement motivation (AMO) and Self-Efficacy (SE) scores. The study consisted of 326 pre-service teachers (270 females, 56 males) studying in various departments at faculties of education across three universities located in the Eastern and Southeastern Anatolia regions of Turkiye. The findings indicate that the demographic variables (gender, family management style, family size, family educational status) do not significantly explain the EI levels of pre-service teachers. A moderately positive relationship was found between AMO and EI, but it was observed that AMO is not a significant predictor of EI. A high positive relationship was detected between SE and EI; it was observed that SE explained 63% of the variance in EI. We found that there was no significant difference between the AMO, SE, and EI scores of pre-service teachers studying at different grade/class levels. As we continue to investigate these topics, it becomes evident that teacher education may continue promoting not only cognitive development but also emotional and social development. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Emotions, Emotion Mindsets, and Emotional Intelligence)
16 pages, 283 KiB  
Article
Facilitators of and Barriers to Inclusive Education in the Arab Community of Israel: The Parents’ Perspective
by Mohamad Jorban, Javier Cachón-Zagalaz, Marcos Mecías-Calvo and Rubén Navarro-Patón
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 525; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050525 - 13 May 2024
Viewed by 371
Abstract
A positive and collaborative partnership between parents and schools is required to improve the education of children with special educational needs. Therefore, the present study aimed to explore the educational context in the Arab community in Israel based on the perceptions and beliefs [...] Read more.
A positive and collaborative partnership between parents and schools is required to improve the education of children with special educational needs. Therefore, the present study aimed to explore the educational context in the Arab community in Israel based on the perceptions and beliefs of parents of children with special educational needs about their children’s education in relation to schools. Twenty parents of children with different special educational needs were interviewed to understand their thoughts and beliefs about special education in the Arab community in Israel. Six core categories emerged from the analysis of the interviews [i.e., (a) parenting, (b) learning at home, (c) communicating, (d) volunteering, (e) inclusion of parents in decision-making related to their children, and (f) teachers’ attitudes towards children from the perspective of parents], which were perceived as axes with high potential to improve special education in this community and guarantee an optimal education for children with special needs. The role of the school as a tool to assist parents is highlighted, with the aim of empowering them and encouraging their active participation in school processes with a clear educational policy that clarifies the demands of the school system for parents and vice versa. Finally, we conclude by highlighting the importance of teachers in a child’s life, emphasizing the potential benefits of cooperation and collaboration between teachers, students, and parents. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Culture of Diversity and Interculturality in Education Today)
10 pages, 587 KiB  
Article
Enhancing Autonomy in Preschoolers: The Role of Motor Games in Development
by Sara Gomes, Raúl Antunes, Inês Sales, Regina Marques and Ana Oliveira
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 524; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050524 - 13 May 2024
Viewed by 407
Abstract
This paper is based on a project which aims to understand the contribution of motricity—in particular, motor games—to the development of autonomy in preschool children, with or without special education needs. A group of 18 children, with an average age of 4.5 years, [...] Read more.
This paper is based on a project which aims to understand the contribution of motricity—in particular, motor games—to the development of autonomy in preschool children, with or without special education needs. A group of 18 children, with an average age of 4.5 years, from a public school took part in the study. An intervention program based on motor games was implemented and tested to promote the children’s autonomy. The program lasted two months, with one 45-min session per week. Using a questionnaire designed for this purpose, the children’s autonomy was assessed pre- and post-intervention. The children’s satisfaction with the sessions was assessed throughout the intervention. The main results were improvements in the autonomy of all the children and their high satisfaction with the program. The participation of children, with and without specific needs, in the entire program shows the use of differentiated practices that allowed everyone to be included in this process. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cultivating Inclusive Classrooms: Practices in Special Education)
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16 pages, 679 KiB  
Article
Transformation of Higher Education: Discussion of the Dimensions, Trends and Scenarios of Change in Ibero-America
by Manuel Fernández Cruz, Borja Fernández García Valdecasas, Lucas Muñoz López and Slava López Rodríguez
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 523; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050523 - 13 May 2024
Viewed by 414
Abstract
World conferences on higher education have reported the effect of social changes on university systems. Particularly, changes that induce a transformation in the academic profession. Here, we study the paradigm shift of the profession in its dimensions, trends, and future scenarios. We conduct [...] Read more.
World conferences on higher education have reported the effect of social changes on university systems. Particularly, changes that induce a transformation in the academic profession. Here, we study the paradigm shift of the profession in its dimensions, trends, and future scenarios. We conduct this study in two phases: first, we applied an inventory on the perception of university teaching to a sample of 2312 professors in the region; after that, we conducted a focus group for each of the ten dimensions in which we noticed indicators of change. With the quantitative data, we performed an ANOVA to identify three clusters of professionalization with dimensions open to change and related to each other: (1) Planning, Teaching Development, and Communicative Capacity; (2) Communication, Evaluation, and Self-evaluation; (3) Professional Self-evaluation, Teaching Innovation and Improvement and Individual Learning Support. With the focus groups we have identified the need to incorporate pedagogical models of inclusive education and teaching based on technological advances as the main drivers of change. We concluded with the proposal of four possible scenarios of future professionalism: (1) entrenched professionalism; (2) semi-professionalism; (3) fragmented professionalism; or (4) balanced professionalism. Full article
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17 pages, 1225 KiB  
Article
Cohesive Online Education Model Using Emergent Technologies to Improve Accessibility and Impact
by Jan Adriaan Swanepoel
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 522; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050522 - 13 May 2024
Viewed by 541
Abstract
It is commonly known that the present systems and techniques used in education are outdated. In 1983, UNESCO had already called attention to this, calling present techniques archaic and inefficient. Though a lot of new developments have been achieved and a lot of [...] Read more.
It is commonly known that the present systems and techniques used in education are outdated. In 1983, UNESCO had already called attention to this, calling present techniques archaic and inefficient. Though a lot of new developments have been achieved and a lot of commendable work has been carried out to remedy particular shortfalls in present systems, no literature was found that develops a concise and complete model for an education approach that maps the use of emergent technologies and techniques to improve on shortfalls in present teaching and learning paradigms. This paper reviews emergent technologies and techniques and their impacts and successes, to propose a combined model for online education to improve the effectiveness, accessibility and impact of teaching and learning activities. This paper concludes by presenting the possible future scope of education and employment structures by examining the possible impacts of the proposed model. Full article
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