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USJ Theses and Dissertations

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  • Vehicles solely powered by electricity are a major technological innovation that combines individual transportation needs and environmental sustainability, yet their market penetration is low. Research has traditionally indicated factors such as the vehicle’s purchasing price, driving range, and charging time as the main barriers to adoption. However, the decision to adopt a technology also depends on what the technology represents to the user; therefore, other factors may be important to explain individuals’ behavior. This study is a quantitative and cross-sectional look at the behavioral intention to adopt battery electric vehicles (BEVs) technology in the context of Macau. The research builds on the unified theory of acceptance and use of technology 2 (UTAUT 2) (Venkatesh et. al., 2012) to explain the characteristics of the local consumers. Besides the addition of image and environmental concern to the theoretical model, the study also put forward and evaluate the construct of technology show-off, an original measure of the visible and experiential characteristics of a technology. A sample of 236 Macau residents was analyzed by structural equation modeling (SEM). The analysis of the data supported the explanatory and predictive power of our model and helped to describe the idiosyncrasies of local residents. The results provide insights related to individual technology acceptance that could be useful in designing more accurate strategies and fostering the uptake of BEVs in Macau or markets that share similarities

  • This thesis aims to explore how learning accounting for non-accounting major students could be enhanced through a comprehensive framework connecting individual attributes and learning approaches. While accounting is considered an important and mandatory discipline for business students, it is also considered a difficult subject which deters students’ engagement in the subject. Although the issue has been widely recognized, there are relatively less discussions on possible remedies. Learning accounting is a dynamic process that go beyond the traditional one-to-many learning and teaching settings, all factors revolving the students’ learning environment and process, altogether determine and affect the learning efficiencies. A meta-analysis was first performed to understand the standings of accounting education and to identify gaps within existing literatures in the field of management, accounting, tourism and general education researches. A documentary review on the curricula of all Macau HEI programs involving compulsory accounting courses was also conducted to understand the role and significance of accounting courses for non-accounting college students in Macau. Based on the literature review, this study borrows constructs from theory of planned behavior (TPB) models in its research framework. It attempts to provide a comprehensive framework to understand how students learn accounting efficiently by delving into individual learning styles of the students and their perceived helpfulness and self-efficacy, in respective to different learning techniques. Due to its exploratory nature, a mixed method of qualitative and quantitative methodology is adopted, where both focus group discussions and in-depth interviews are performed with non-accounting students to elicit understandings on student’s difficulties in learning accounting and their preferences for different learning styles. Then, a full-scale quantitative survey is conducted in a Macau higher education institute to assess the learning efficiencies of accounting in different situations. A triangulation with feedback from faculties and administrators are also elicited to provide alternate dimensions on the issues. With no surprise, there is no one best 3 teaching style or method for all students, this thesis contributes to accounting education research by provide a comprehensive diagnosis on the all-round learning stimulus and hindrance in learning accounting. At the end, recommendations are provided for accounting educators to emphasize on the uniqueness of students and to encourage a more dynamic and open environment for learning. Limitations of the studies are also discussed

  • As societies globalize, mastery of a second or multiple languages has become an important index to enhance interaction in the society. In that English is a is a widely used medium of communication globally for engagement in international business, commerce, science, technology and governance, the benefits of an efficacious English language teaching force to facilitate the English acquisition process of students in classrooms around the world is highly valued. For the purpose of this study, the English language teacher efficacy instrument (ELTEI) was adapted to the local context to measure the professional efficacy of the English as a foreign language (EFL) teacher participants. The objective of the research was to investigate the degree of relationship between antecedent conditions and specific teacher efficacy in Macao. A mixed-method approach in a sequential phase design was adopted to explore the efficacy of English language teachers serving Chinese medium schools in a non-English speaking region in Asia. Phase-one employed a qualitative approach to contextualize the measurement instrument and to ascertain important characteristics of the target population. Phase-two ensured a quantitative approach to yield understanding regarding the influence of key antecedent conditions on the efficacy of English language teachers in Macao. As evidenced through multiple linear regressions and structural equation modeling, openness, neuroticism, and perceived school support were significant predictors for teacher’s self-efficacy in English teaching. Recommendations for the school management to enhance and sustain the efficacy of EFL teachers in Macao were discussed

  • This research examines the relationship between banking competition and efficiency using relevant data of Macau banking industry from 1999 to 2016. The key finding of this research is to demonstrate a clear causality between competition and efficiency in Macau’s banking industry throughout the study period. The interaction between two vital factors of the banking industry provides a solid empirical evidence for the practitioners and policymakers to make sound decisions accordingly. The most recent data show that there is a wide variation of key operational indicators of different banks in 2016. However, this study finds no evidence that the size of operations in terms of total bank loans would impact banks’ efficiency. Economies of scale or market share doesn’t necessarily bring cost efficiency in Macau’s banking industry

  • The territory of Macao is composed of several granitic intrusions belonging to one of the biggest granite provinces in the world, the Southeast China Magmatic Belt (SCMB), located in the southeast (SE) area of the Cathaysia Block. The SCMB is known by the occurrence of large volumes of Mesozoic magmatic rocks (over 90% are granitic rocks and equivalent volcanic rocks with minor basalts), occupying a total outcrop area of nearly 200.000 km2. The geology of Macao (~30 Km2) is dominated by granitic rocks displaying a wide range of textural, mineralogical and chemical features, making it an ideal region to study these rocks and the petrogenetic processes responsible for their diversity. This study employed a wide range of research methodologies, namely field studies, petrography, zircon geochronology, mineral chemistry, whole-rock elemental and isotopic geochemistry to determine the nature of the source, the petrogenetic processes and the tectonic regimes of the Mesozoic magmatism in this region. Thus, the data collected along this study aims to provide new knowledge on the tectono-magmatic evolution of Macao, in particular, and of SE China, in general. The results obtained from the high-precision U–Pb zircon geochronology, acquired through isotope dilution thermal ionization mass spectrometry (ID-TIMS) and in-situ laser ablation multi-collector inductively coupled mass spectrometry (LA-MC-ICPMS), revealed different ages for Macao granites. Despite its relatively small area, the determined ages tightly constrain the Macao granitic magmatism to two periods, ranging from 164.5 ± 0.6 to 162.9 ± 0.7 Ma (MGI – Macao Group I granites) and 156.6 ± 0.2 to 155.5 ± 0.8 Ma (MGII – Macao Group II granites). In addition, younger dacitic rocks were dated at 150.6 ± 0.6 Ma and <120 Ma. The existence of two proximal but distinct granitic pulses, spanning for a time of about 9 Ma and separated by ca. 6 Ma, in the Macao granitic suite suggests that it was incrementally assembled. This hypothesis is also extendable to the neighbouring Hong Kong region, where the magmatic activity occurred in four major pulses spanning for about 24 Ma. However, the MGII granites indicate the occurrence, on the Pearl River Delta region, of a magmatic pulse between those defined in Hong Kong at the origin of Lamma Suite (165–160 Ma) and the Kwai Chung Suite (148–146 Ma). In addition, Rare Element Earth (REE) ratios suggest that this pulse may only occur in Macao area, while MGI granites show evolving trends of REE ratios similar to those of Jurassic granites outcropping in vast areas of the Cathaysia Block (SE China). Inheritance patterns in the zircon U–Pb data indicate the presence of a population of antecrysts (165–180 Ma) crystallized from earlier magmatic pulses and a population of inherited zircons, from Precambrian to Phanerozoic sources, incorporated into the magmas during melting and/or ascent/emplacement at crustal levels. The oldest inherited ages (2.4 Ga and possibly 2.9 Ga) suggest contribution of Proterozoic and possibly of late Archaean crustal sources for the Macao magmatism. The granitic rocks of Macao are mainly high-K calc-alkaline metaluminous to weakly peraluminous I-type granites with variable degrees of fractionation. Fractional crystallization played an important role in the evolution of these granites, though the fractionation paths differ for the highly fractionated facies of both groups mainly due to distinct accessory fractionating phases. Such difference is evident by distinct REE evolution trends: while MGI magmas seem to have evolved by gradual enrichment in heavy REE relatively to light REE, originating progressively flatter REE patterns, magmas from MGII are marked by depletion of middle REE, leading to progressively concave upward REE patterns. However, while most of the geochemical variation of the MGII granites can be explained by fractional crystallization, the same is not true for MGI granites. The MGI highly fractionated granites show evidence for the REE tetrad effect and are characterized by non-CHArge-and-RAdius-Controlled (non-CHARAC) behaviour of trace elements, suggesting late-stage melt/fluid interactions involving F-rich fluids. The stage of evolution represented by the MGI highly fractionated granites corresponds to the onset of fluid/melt interaction in a highly evolved granitic system, which may have led to enhanced hydrothermal activity in more evolved stages, as those represented in neighbouring areas in SE China. Significant differences in isotopic composition were also observed, with the MGII being characterized by a much narrow range of initial 87Sr/86Sr ratios and εNd(t) and εHf(t) values than MGI. Based on these differences, the MGII granites are considered to be part of a comagmatic suite that has evolved in closed system, contrasting with what can be inferred for MGI. The increase in initial 87Sr/86Sr ratios with degree of evolution, the presence of metasedimentary enclaves and the high percentage of inherited zircon with Paleozoic ages in MGI, suggest the occurrence of an assimilation fractionation crystallization (AFC) process. The AFC processes were a major cause for the I-S transitional characteristics of the MGI highly fractionated granites and possibly of the other similar Jurassic biotite granites in SE China. The observed decoupling of Sr, Nd and Hf isotope systems might have resulted from magma mixing between the granitic and more mafic magmas, which caused the homogenization of Sr isotope ratios but not of the Nd and Hf ones. Such process is also supported by the occurrence of Microgranular Mafic Enclaves (MME) hosted by the granites. Isotope and major element compositions together with model ages strongly suggest that Macao granitic magmas were generated by partial melting of infracrustal medium-to-high K basaltic Paleo-Proterozoic to Mesoproterozoic protoliths heated by, and mixed to some degree with mantle-derived magmas. The temporal and spatial association of Macao and SE China Jurassic I-type granites with basaltic/gabbroic rocks, syenites and A-type granites, displaying typical intraplate chemical features, indicates an extensional regime rather than an active margin for the origin of these rocks. It also points to an important role of mantle-derived magmas in the production of SE China Jurassic granites. Adiabatic decompression melting of the asthenospheric mantle produced mafic magmas, which underplated at the base of the crust (Moho), subsequently triggering partial melting of the lower crust to generate the granitic magmas. The Jurassic Macao granites are interpreted as being produced in an intraplate extensional setting related to the break-off and foundering of a previously flat-slab (Paleo-Pacific plate) beneath the Eurasian plate. The boundary between east and west Cathaysia blocks is roughly along the Zhenghe-Dapu Fault (ZDF), which intersects the SE China coast near Hong Kong and is thought to have played a major role for the Mesozoic magmatic activity in this region. The stronger isotopic affinities of Macao granites with the other granitic rocks and lower crustal xenoliths from the western Cathaysia Block suggest that the ZDF is likely to pass south of Macao, a fact that has not been mentioned before. In addition to the Early Yanshanian (Jurassic) granitic magmatism in Macao, the younger ages obtained for the dacite dykes indicate that the territory was also affected, to a lesser degree, by Late Yanshanian (Cretaceous) magmatism. The transition from granitic to dacitic magmatism most likely corresponds to a change in the regional tectonic regime, which induced a significant change in the magma genesis processes. In contrast with the intraplate features of Macao and SE China Jurassic granites and coeval mafic rocks, the geochemical features of the Macao dacite dykes (e.g. high LILE/HFSE ratios and negative anomalies of Nb, Ta and Ti) are identical to those characterizing arc-like subduction-related magmas. These dacites are most likely evolved products of arc-like magmatism and may testify the reestablishment of a normal subduction system in this area of SE China. Keywords: I-type granites; U–Pb zircon geochronology; Yanshanian Orogeny; Macao (SE China); Cathaysia Block.

  • This thesis introduces, implements and evaluates an innovative concept for assessing driving behavior in public transportation through Mobile Crowd Sensing (MCS), under the field of Advanced Public Transportation System (APTS) - a sub-group of Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS). Aggressive driving behavior is known to be a cause of avoidable accidents and to increase fuel consumption. In public transportations, it is also a case for costumers’ dissatisfaction. Monitoring the quality of driving behavior is a key element to overcome this issue and to improve road safety and customer satisfaction. In this research project, a software application (app) for mobile devices was developed as an experimental tool / proof-of-concept, to monitor aggressive driving behavior in bus drivers, collecting data coming from mobile device’s accelerometer and passengers’ qualitative evaluation. The experimental procedure took place in public transportation in Macau (bus only) and consisted of data collection of drivers’ aggressive driving behavior using the developed application. The analysis of collected data suggests that MCS is a viable way to assess drivers’ behavior in public transportation, thus contributing to the improvement of the service and increase of road safety. Although the methodology has been tailor-made for Macau public transportation, it is believed that the same concept can be applied to other cities, leading them towards the goal of becoming smarter cities. Keywords: driving behavior; mobile crowd sensing; crowdsourcing; smart city; advanced public transportation system; intelligent transportation system; road safety; mobile device accelerometer

  • This thesis introduces, implements and evaluates an innovative concept for assessing driving behavior in public transportation through Mobile Crowd Sensing (MCS), under the field of Advanced Public Transportation System (APTS) - a sub-group of Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS). Aggressive driving behavior is known to be a cause of avoidable accidents and to increase fuel consumption. In public transportations, it is also a case for costumers’ dissatisfaction. Monitoring the quality of driving behavior is a key element to overcome this issue and to improve road safety and customer satisfaction. In this research project, a software application (app) for mobile devices was developed as an experimental tool / proof-of-concept, to monitor aggressive driving behavior in bus drivers, collecting data coming from mobile device’s accelerometer and passengers’ qualitative evaluation. The experimental procedure took place in public transportation in Macau (bus only) and consisted of data collection of drivers’ aggressive driving behavior using the developed application. The analysis of collected data suggests that MCS is a viable way to assess drivers’ behavior in public transportation, thus contributing to the improvement of the service and increase of road safety. Although the methodology has been tailor-made for Macau public transportation, it is believed that the same concept can be applied to other cities, leading them towards the goal of becoming smarter cities. Keywords: driving behavior; mobile crowd sensing; crowdsourcing; smart city; advanced public transportation system; intelligent transportation system; road safety; mobile device accelerometer

  • This dissertation reports on a study which aims to add to the theoretical understanding of how social capital is transferred from one generation to the next in business families. Studies in the field of family business have emphasized the importance of succession for the survival of family businesses, but while the succession process and planning have been widely studied, the examination of social capital succession is scarce. As for the studies in family business’s social capital, the importance of social capital as a source of competitive advantage which already exists in business families have often been expressed, but there is a lack of research in the means of transferring this form of capital from the family business leaders to their successors. The study presented here addresses this gap in family business succession literature and social capital literature, explaining the means of transgenerational succession of social capital in family businesses. This is a qualitative research using the multiple case study method which aims to investigate the means of social capital transmission by comparing the cases of five different Chinese family businesses in Macau, which are in the succession process, with the successor currently managing the firm while the former generation business leaders are in the process of handing over the business and preparing for retirement. In doing so, this research offers a theoretical framework of explaining how social capital is transmitted from the incumbents to the successors throughout a five-stage succession process developed for this research. The forms of social capital that exists in family businesses are identified from previous literature, in order to clearly explain how these different forms of social capital are passed on from generation to generation based on the review on succession process introduced in published literature. A theoretical iii framework is formed from the two parent theories on family business succession and social capital, and is then verified empirically from five Chinese family businesses in Macau. The cases are developed through in-depth interviews with the incumbents and successors of the family businesses, informal interviews with stakeholders (including family members, business associates, non-family employees and customers), direct observation on the premises of the Chinese family businesses and secondary data, in order to study the process of intergenerational transmission of social capital in these Chinese family businesses

  • Two billion users make Facebook of academic interest. This thesis creates a Facebook Divide Index, the delineated categories of Facebook Native, Facebook Immigrant, and Facebook Isolate, and develops Facebook inequality concepts. Macau has a fast- growing number of Facebook Immigrants who benefit from using the online social network. Data from participation-observation and surveys demonstrate social capital gain by Facebook Immigrants, with older generation Facebook users relatively happier than their younger counterparts. The thesis concludes that society needs to equip and empower the older generation or Facebook Isolates, so that they can benefit from online social network usage

  • Macau is a dynamic city with a unique blend of Eastern and Western cultures, which has become a well-known travel destination. Macau is not only home to the casinos, but also a shopping paradise, where we can find international luxury brands and local designer brands. The local fashion industry has a strong follower base, taking a different route than that of the Textile and Garment Industry in the 1980s. Nowadays, the local Fashion Industry is not only focused on production, but more on the design and creativity. Macau is a city rooted in the casino industry, having shifted from an industrial economy into a service-based one. This study aims to assess the relations between Asia and Europe with regard to their impact on the creative process of local fashion designers, to understand how local designers balance between market, creativity and aesthetics. Also, it is important to understand how Macau government supports local brands such as: “Made in Macau”. In order to accomplish our goal, several academic areas will be addressed, such as fashion design and the cultural and creative industries in their broad sense, (aesthetics, history, creativity, identity, economy, ergonomics, cognition, and social value). A mix of quantitative and qualitative methods have been used, including questionnaires, open-ended interviews, case-study research, ethnographic methods, historical research and visual methodologies. In the following chapters, this studies will describe mainly the Macau fashion industry in a globalized era and the multiculturalism’s influence on the local fashion designer’s collections

  • Several internationalization theories have been developed over the past few decades that have made great contributions in explaining enterprise internationalization and their mode of entry strategy. It has been suggested that the determinants of entry mode choice of enterprises from emerging and frontier markets differ from those of comparable enterprises from advanced economies. Literature review appears to indicate that there is a need to expand the framework for entry mode strategies to accommodate the expansion issues enterprises from emerging and frontier countries face in the global marketplace. Nevertheless, not much information and acceptable conclusion has been made on how MNEs from frontier markets internationalize and what factors influence their choice of entry into those markets. This study investigated the internationalization strategies of Lusophone Africa MNEs from Angola and Mozambique, more specifically their entry mode. Information was gathered through a survey of 29 MNE’s upper management respondents and subsequent face-to-face semi-structured interviews with 24 of them in their countries. The results of this study suggest that most MNEs opted for equity-based investment strategies, mainly joint venture and M&E as their preferred mode of entry when internationalizing. A significant group of them opted for e- commerce/e-business strategies, and direct and indirect exports. A smaller portion of the interviewees chose Greenfield investment as a mode of entry. Many of these MNEs could be classified as born global/INV. Finally, this study presents a conceptual framework for use in studying the entry mode choice of enterprises from Lusophone Africa frontier markets and presents research propositions for better understanding the determinants of entry mode strategies of enterprise from Angola and Mozambique. Keywords: Internationalization, Entry Mode, Emerging Markets, Frontier Markets, Lusophone African MNEs, Angola, Mozambique

  • This research intends to analyze how the social, political, economical and cultural transformations of the retrocession of Macao S.A.R. to China influenced the contemporary grassroots artistic production, namely their response to the issue of One Country, Two Systems policy. This transitional state of these places in-between creates a somehow ambivalent situation where some of the core values of identity and heritage are fading away due to the forces of the current development. In this sense, it urges to consider the ways in which artists in the post-retrocession era in their lived experiences, form their own sense of community and consciousness of place, time and belonging and, by doing so, can contribute to the preservation of some of the local and specific characteristics, enhancing the cultural vitality of the region. The growing interest by the artists in the issues of preservation and engagement with the locality, trough memory and history, manifested in ‘alternative’ modes of production, is providing a different model of ‘place making’ and a narrative that contrasts and complements some of the top-down cultural policies. Since the focus of development in these territories has been on the idea of creative industries, entertainment and tourism as possible realities for the pressing economical diversification, these grassroots models, functioning as the ‘second system’ open up complexity, providing different questions and answers to the future of artistic production. Finally, departing from these examples, we analyze the possibility of a new image for these kinds of artistic practices, through their incorporation into the possibility of relational aesthetics ‘with Chinese characteristics’, within the perspective of integration, and as emergent features in the field of contemporary art

  • This study covers the limited research on how experiences with nature can foster Chinese students’ pro-environmental identity and behavior. The relevant literature outlines five areas – identity, human behavior, experiences, nature and transformation – in understanding how the Chinese culture of ‘face’ (lain/mian) shapes Chinese students’ identity and behavior today and why experience with nature can help to transform Chinese students’ values, beliefs and norms, and shapes someone who manifests an environmentally sensitive behavior. Past research studies environmental behavior in various dimensions, including the correlation between environmental knowledge and positive environmental attitudes and behavior. Yet surveys of how students’ experience with nature fosters a pro-environmental identity and behavior, especially amongst Chinese students, are rare. The qualitative case study in this thesis seeks to find out whether senior students in the Design Department of IPM’s School of Arts who experienced nature in Southern Thailand show a stronger pro-environmental identity and behavior compared to those not in the experiential learning program. A survey which includes the Environmental Identity Survey (Clayton, 2003) and the Environmentally Responsible Behaviors Index (Smith-Sebasto & D’Acosta, 1995) was administered to all senior students, and an in-depth interview with students who had experience with nature in Southern Thailand was conducted. The findings suggest that a rainforest experience not merely fosters pro-environmental identity and behavior, but student all rounded development especially as a step towards internationalization. The findings also indicate to what extent the programmatic factors of the experience were important in changing Chinese students’ values, beliefs and norms in thinking and behaving environmentally, as well as in student personal development. Keywords: nature, experiential learning, pro-environmental identity, pro-environmental behavior

  • Chapter 1 provides an overview of the study. Scholarly interest in film discourse (Bateman and Schmidt, 2011; Tseng, 2009) have led to the development of semiotic resources as dependable model to anchor current film research. The application of semiotic multimodality to investigate “how film means” and unlock its “textual organization” through a specific film adaptation case study will be the main focus of the research. Chapter 2 reviews relevant literature in the domain of adaptation and multimodal studies. In particular, semiotic multimodal theories which inform the present study of Ackbar Abbas’ theory of déjà disparu in the context of Hong Kong New Cinema in general, and the cinema of Wong Kar-wai in particular are introduced. Chapter 3 outlines the research design. The theoretical framework underpinning the study include Metz’s grande paradigmatique, Barthes’ semiotic, and above all, Bateman’s multimodality principles of analytic units such as filmic units, syntagmatic and paradigmatic axes are set out. Chapter 4 analyses Liu Yichang’s modernist novella, Intersection (1972). Drawing upon adaptation theories, the chapter examines Wong’s radical re-working of Liu’s experimental fiction to produce an “abstract adaptation” that not only challenges issues of adaptation fidelity but opens “new theoretical dialogue” about the intersection of film and literature, with particular emphasis on “the formalism of tête–bêche (theory) into a social-historical critique” in his film adaptation of In the Mood for Love. Chapter 5 examines the filmmaker – Wong Kar-wai. In the 2012 Sight and Sound poll, critics and film-makers voted In the Mood for Love the 24th Greatest-Film-of-All-Time. Commercial and critical acclaimed aside, the film about unrequited love, the transmutation of time and memory, carries a “historical significance” in post-colonial Hong Kong. Abbas theorizes a culture of déjà disparu to covey film-makers, like Wong, who adopts cinematic techniques of “disappearance and ambivalence” to capture a global city, i.e. Hong Kong, that is imminently disappearing. Chapter 6 analyses In the Mood for Love in a stratified semiotic model. It explores the basic units of film, or the syntagmatic configurations of filmic units, through fine-grained, shot-by-shot analysis of the case study. The chapter employs extensive corpus of data coupled with rigorous annotation of filmic units and detailed analysis of paradigmatic systems. Chapter 7 applies the analytic framework for a closer analysis of In the Mood for Love by combining syntagmatic and paradigmatic organization that covers the entire target film fragment. Incidentally, Bateman and Schmidt’s seminal research, the results published in 2012, analysed D. W. Griffith’s The Girl and her Trust (1912), a silent film, 15 minute long, consisted of only 140 shots. Despite the level of complexity involved, the present study seeks to examine if a semiotic multimodal framework, specifically through the interaction of the two axes – syntagmatic and paradigmatic – could lead to fresh insights of “textual organization”, filmic meaning making and, consequently, filmic discourse. Chapter 8 and 9 summarizes the key findings, discusses its implications and its contribution to multimodal research. Limitations of the present study and directions for further research are proposed. Chapter 10 provides generalizations concerning In the Mood for Love, Wong’s film adaptation from Liu Yichang’s modernist novella, Intersection; as well addresses the research questions raised in the study. To summarize, the study builts on Bateman and Schmidt’s (2011) and Tseng’s (2009) research on film as a form of “cinematographic document,” and continues their efforts to construct a semiotic mode of film. The author recognizes the complexity of undertaking research in the domain of semiotic discourse. This study argues that as film analysis is about ways of seeing and synthesizing different cinematic styles, strategies; learnt cinematic conventions and reflective viewing is imperative. The interaction of robust multimodal resources, well-defined analytic units, based on dependable models, and conducted through a discursive process should align to produce fruitful filmic discourse. The study premised on the assumption that film is more than a “self-enclosed signification system” but a crucial “cultural practice” that “reflect and inflect culture.” Taken together, this view underscores the importance and interactivity of cinema, culture and society. To this end, the study contributes to filmic meaning making, the New Hong Kong Cinema, and finally, the present study invariably serves as a form of “social document” or “cultural artifacts” in its exploration of Hong Kong ever changing identity, culture and moods

  • Religion and migration are both phenomena that have endured perennially in the experience of humanity. However, studies on the relationship of these two subjects are not as prevalent compared to how widespread international migration has become especially among people coming from religious societies. This work contributes to the knowledge base on the significance of religion within the context of international migration by looking at how religious faith and practice evolve as a result of the experience of migration. Interviews about the migration narratives of Filipino Catholics working in Macau were conducted. These were supported by data collected through the use of survey questionnaires that look into changes in religious practices of respondents as well as their attitudes towards faith and belief. The study has found that there is constancy in the religious faith and practice of Filipino Catholics even amidst external changes to the physical and social environment brought about by moving to a predominantly secular society. Through recourse to anthropological analysis, this immutability of faith is attributable to the unique ethnographic feature of Filipinos’ high regard for the centrality and importance of interiority in their life. Keywords: migration, immigrant religion, faith, Filipino religiosity

  • The purpose of this research is to analyse the nexus between foreign aid and poverty reduction. In this research, aid provided by traditional and (re)emerging donors, China and France, was compared to understand their strategies toward poverty reduction and the impact of their aid in improving the conditions of their beneficiaries. Guinea, a Least Developed Country, was used as unit of comparison and assessment. Qualitative research methodology was used to collect data about the two aid donors, China and France. Among other research tools used, there are documents’ analysis (official documents from donors and recipients, declarations, scholarly works, media articles, etc.), interviews with various stakeholders, site visits and observation. As for main findings, this research found similarities and differences between China and France’s aid strategies in general and in Guinea in particular. There are similarities in the ways they integrate poverty reduction into their aid policies, motives and partly in their geographical and sectoral allocation systems. In terms of differences, they use different instruments and conditions to deliver their aid for poverty reduction. Regarding the impact of their aid, both donors have to some extent contributed to improving the access of the poor population in Guinea to basic services such as education, health, water and sanitation, etc. Finally, contrary to those who have denied the importance of foreign aid as a financial tool to reduce poverty, this research posits that aid is still a relevant tool to address poverty. However, more work needs to be done at donor, recipient and direct beneficiaries’ levels to ensure its effectiveness. On the other hand, it posits that the divide between traditional and (re)-emerging donors is becoming blurred as their strategies to address poverty are becoming increasingly alike

  • Kruger and Dunning (1992) found that unskilled people were typically unaware of their own performance and ability. In this context, unskilled performers were shown to overestimate their performance and ability, whereas skilled performers often accurately predicted their own performance and ability. Such miscalibration in self-assessment is usually attributed to a lack of so-called metacognitive skills necessary for performance evaluation. However, it remains unknown to what extent the miscalibration of performance judgment and optimistic bias is observed in the Chinese culture. This thesis examines patterns of miscalibration of performance judgment and specific optimistic bias. This thesis also builds on a range of previous studies of performance judgment and optimistic bias. In order to investigate the performance judgment and optimistic bias in this context, two studies were conducted as part of the research aspect of this thesis. In the first study, participants were given a reasoning task on which they had to predict their performance before completing the task and estimate their performance upon completion of the task. The second study followed similar methodology, with two additional tasks – Institute For Tourism Studies (IFT) module and the respective midterm examination. Results from both studies indicate that biases in performance judgment occur in the Chinese culture, and may yield negative consequences to those persons who exhibit such judgments. Although metacognitive ability provides some explanation for the miscalibration of performance judgment, the results of the current study indicate that task optimistic bias provides another, equally viable explanation for the miscalibration of performance judgment. The findings presented in this thesis suggest that inaccurate judgments of performance occur within various domains (general and specific iii performance contexts) and that there are a range of implications associated with these biases. Keywords: Miscalibration of performance judgment, optimistic bias, absolute optimistic bias, comparative optimistic bias, overestimation, overplacement, underestimation, underplacement

  • This thesis investigates the Language Learning Strategies (LLS) used by English as a Foreign Language (EFL) nursing students of higher education in Macao and the effectiveness related to students’ learning outcomes by Strategy Instruction (SI). To date there has been no literature in the area of SI among the Macao Chinese EFL higher education students on teaching all LLS groups, and on four main English skills to look at its effects on learning processes and outcomes at the same time, and this study starts to fill the gap. The research uses an embedded mixed methods research design in phase one and an embedded mixed methods quasi-experimental design in phase two. Phase one aimed to identify students’ LLS use. The findings revealed that students’ cognitive, metacognitive and compensatory strategies were used more than affective, memory-related and social strategies, and overall they used a medium to low level of LLS. In phase two, the effects of SI on students’ changes of LLS use, their proficiency and English learning processes were identified. After SI, students used LLS both more widely and frequently in all four main English skills. Most students’ motivation and self-confidence were enhanced. After SI the affective group of strategies in the treatment group statistically significantly improved, with a moderate effect size, from that of the comparison group. It was found that the widely used Strategy Inventory for Language Learning questionnaires by Oxford (1989c) had limited statistical power and some conceptual confusion. Recommendations are made for policy and practice of EFL instruction

Last update from database: 10/27/21, 8:13 PM (UTC)