• Mapping Stress and healthy balance with the workable ranges model in mindfulness-based stress reduction: First-person embodied reflections

      Sheffield, David; Hogan, Susan; Rose, Sally (University of Derby, 2021-12-14)
      During Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) courses, participants are taught to be more present with stressful experience in order to respond to it more effectively. The meditation-based experiential pedagogy is supported by didactic teaching about stress to increase awareness of patterns of reaction and to support the application of mindfulness to self-regulation. The content of teaching about stress, and how it is best taught within the pedagogy, is an important practical and theoretical consideration. This thesis addresses a gap in knowledge by focussing on this little-regarded area of practice. The aim of this research was to develop practical and theoretical knowledge about the inclusion in the MBSR curriculum of the Workable Ranges Model of stress and emotional regulation, developed by the author. This visual model lays out regulated states and both mobilised and immobilised threat-based reactions in relation to each other. The main research question was: how does the Workable Ranges Model complement MBSR? Three key themes were identified in the literature and began to address the research questions. They were: the role of didactic teaching about stress; the notion that how difficult experiences are negotiated is a paradoxical mechanism; and that the Workable Ranges Model provides a novel perspective on participants’ progression through mindfulness-based programmes. Qualitative research was conducted as an illuminative evaluation of the practice innovation. An enactivist, embodied-mind epistemology was used to consider both embodied and verbal forms of knowledge. The application of mindfulness-based, first-person phenomenological methodology, within the frame of the conceptual encounter method, functioned as both learning and data-collection processes. The first phase focussed on the inclusion of the model in three MBSR courses. Data were gathered from participants in classes using diagrams and a question schedule. A template analysis elucidated engagement and resonance, awareness of the features of regulated and dysregulated states and patterns of reactivity, ways of responding to dysregulated states and applications linked with MBSR. In the second phase, seven course graduates engaged in a diary exercise, post-meditation reflective inquiry and a group discussion. Thematic analysis identified an overarching theme that the Workable Ranges Model provides a dynamic map for the mindful exploration of stability and stress. Three interrelated processes were evident: charting regulated and dysregulated states, embodied application in mindfulness practice, and orienting to and resourcing regulation and self-care. The themes from phase two shaped a broader meaning to both data sets. Three functions of the model as a map were identified and discussed. It worked: (i) as a method for teaching about healthy balance and stress; (ii) as a heuristic for self-exploration and developing insight; and (iii) as a guide for mindfulness-based self-regulation and self-care. Together, these aspects acted as aids to teaching and learning about mindfulness-based self-regulation. Theoretical and practical implications are discussed.
    • Humanizing hospitality industry human resources management to improve recruitment and retention of resilient hospitable talents in the sector

      Rawlinson, Sarah; Naisola Ruiter, Victoria (University of Derby, 2021-02-15)
      Attracting, retaining, developing, and motivating hospitable talent is a perennial problem in hospitality industry talent management. This thesis sought to address this problem by examining how human resource (HR) practices can improve talent management (TM) to attract persons with the right personal characteristics and support them to thrive in a hospitality career. There has been a shift in the academic literature from a focus on the organisational practices of talent management to understanding the implications of the employee’s experience as they develop within an organisation. There remains much to be understood about the role of human resources management (HRM) practitioners in the attraction and retention of talents with the right personal attributes to succeed in hospitality careers. This thesis aims to advance the theoretical understanding of HR theories and strategies to improve recruitment and retention in the hospitality industry. To meet the aim of this research, a mixed method approach and a sequential data collection approach was adopted. A personality self-profiling questionnaire survey was used to profile 309 students from business management degree programmes on their hospitable personal characteristics to understand whether students selecting hospitality management degrees had more hospitable characteristics. A Delphi study was conducted with 14 hospitality experts with different national and international hospitality leadership and management experience. The study aimed to research consensus on the strategic HR approaches required to improve recruitment and retention in the hospitality industry. The main findings of the research study were the need to review HR strategies in the hospitality industry. These strategies need to address recruitment and retention by promoting careers in the sector, investing in training and development, rewards and wellbeing strategies appropriate for a younger work force, closer working with training institutions to develop graduate competencies that are multi-disciplinary HRM practices and policies that humanize HRM throughout the employee journey. This study makes an important contribution to understanding the role of humane HRM strategies in recruitment and retention of a skilled and resilient hospitality workforce. One of the outcomes of this study is the development of a theoretically supported and empirically validated strategic HRM recruitment and retention toolkit. The toolkit is an end-to-end process that operationalizes and maps the HRM strategies throughout the employee experience journey to facilitate HR managers to improve the process of recruitment and retention in the sector. It identifies empirically found strategies and reveals possibilities to integrate an end-to-end strategic approach in talent management prioritizing employee wellbeing, training and development to nurture employee emotional resilience. This is the first research study to illuminate an end-to-end strategic approach towards an employee journey in the hospitality industry. To identify the scope of research to be explored in the future, implications for future research and practice are outlined.
    • A Qualitative Exploration of Drug and Alcohol Using Parents’ Experiences in Drug/Alcohol Treatment when Social Services are Involved.

      Montague, Jane; Elander, James; Goddard, Kashmir (University of DerbyCollege of Health, Psychology and Social Care, 2021-02-05)
      This thesis is concerned with the lives of drug and alcohol using parents, who access treatment for their addiction. Parents who are drug and alcohol users may experience stigma, fear, shame, and denial around their misuse, which means that many fail or feel fearful to access any treatment for fear of official intervention. This thesis aims to explore the narratives of Class A drug users and alcohol users who access drug and alcohol treatment and who have been referred to Children’s Social Services when a Child Protection issue has been raised. Qualitative data was generated during the three studies. Semi-structured interviews took place during each study (1, 2 and 3). Study 2 allowed the use of photographs taken by participants to be examined. Study 3 allowed the use of a journal to capture the experience of the participants. Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis was applied to the verbatim transcripts. Key findings are presented as four superordinate themes in chapters 5, 6, 7 and 8. Each chapter focused on one of the four superordinate themes that were identified in the data analysis, which combined data from all three studies. ‘Risk and vulnerabilities’ in Chapter Five suggested that when these parents were teenagers’ drugs and alcohol were easily accessible, and there was trauma in their lives, which meant exposure to drug and alcohol use was a way of escape. Parents described addiction as a cycle they were continually on, and regardless of what they did the power of this cycle made it difficult to break free. This, for some, developed into committing a crime to fund their addiction. The theme of drug and alcohol use and parenting is discussed in Chapter Six. This chapter suggested that parents’ mental health was severely impacted as a result of their drug and alcohol use. This left the parents feeling stigmatised and experiencing a tainted identity. Parents expressed grief and trauma about their experience and how this impacted on family attachments and affected partner relationships. Parent’s emotional reaction to Social Services and Child Protection in Chapter Seven suggested a loss of control and negative emotions such as anxiety, anger feeling embarrassed, scared, guilt, and frustration when professionals became involved. Parents wanted professionals to understand addiction, and they hoped the professionals supporting them would be supportive to help them change. Recovery and change in Chapter Eight suggested coming to the point of realisation that they had no choice but to change their behaviour. There was also an understanding that their behaviour had impacted their children. Parents expressed the difficulty of treatment without proper effective interventions and, at times, relapse and how this was frowned upon. The subordinate themes linked to one another and some similar themes appeared in several chapters. Chapter Nine, the final chapter summaries the thesis as it provides a glimpse into the complex nature of being a drug/alcohol addicted parent. Key findings suggest a change in professional practice to meet the needs of the user and the wider family.
    • The needs of clients coming to counselling following an experience of second harm: A Q Methodology study

      Whiffin, Charlotte; Townend, Michael; Kenward, Linda (University of DerbyUniversity of Cumbria, 2021-02)
      Introduction Successive reports identified that psychological harm (second harm) can be caused to patients by poor responses of healthcare providers to initial errors or neglect. Aim To explore the needs of clients coming to counselling following experience of second harm. Method A Q methodology study involving ten participants UK wide was undertaken. Participants sorted 42 statements online constructed from a concourse comprising sources on experiences of second harm. Concourse sources focused on the deficits of interpersonal relationships, therefore statements focused on what participants needed from interpersonal relationships with counsellors moving towards recovery. Data analysis Factor Analysis via PQMethod was undertaken on the Q sort data. The interview data was used to elucidate the nuances of the Factors as viewpoints. Findings Two Factors were extracted from the Q sort data that demonstrated the viewpoints of participants: Viewpoint 1 – Needs that are both past and present focused: being understood. Viewpoint 2 – Needs that are both present and recovery focused: making me well. From these two viewpoints 11 perceived needs were identified. Nine were identified as generic needs within the counselling relationship; however, two were identified as specific to those attending counselling for second harm. Counselling needs specific to second harm were; the need for participants to not be blamed for what happened and, the need to have the counsellor understand the impact of the harm and the complaints and litigation system including issues of control, power, and autonomy. Conclusion Findings of this study revealed people who seek counselling following experiences of second harm have specific needs beyond those expected from a general counselling relationship. Furthermore this study was able to define second harm for the first time and offers this to the research and practice community in the hope it will advance the field by helping counsellors to understand the concept, nature, and impact of second harm in addition to the expected skill set for any counsellor supporting those who have experienced second harm. Further research is required to evaluate the impact of educating counsellors in second harm and further testing of the definition of second harm.
    • Our School Days: A Narrative Inquiry of the Lived Experiences of Former Pupils in Derbyshire Primary Schools from 1944 to 2009

      Tupling, Claire; Charles, Sarah; Shelton, Fiona (University of Derby, 2021-01-25)
      The aim of this study was to explore narratives of former pupils, who attended primary school between 1944 and 2009, to understand educational change and the everyday experience of educational policy. By exploring education through a lens of experience, the study adopted narrative inquiry as a method to awaken hidden stories of the ordinary, everyday experiences of the participants (narrators) to gain insight into their memories of primary school. Drawn together, these individual experiences form a ‘collected memory’ which provides insight into primary education across the different decades. The findings demonstrate how narrative inquiry offers insight into primary school experiences by examining stories as data sources, which bring to bear the experience of school from the perspective of former pupils. The stories, combined with an examination of literature and legislation, highlight how and why teachers are remembered, the curriculum, educational inequity, memories of playground games and books read at school. An implication for teacher educators is to include the understanding of experience and the impact that teaching methods and policy implementation can have in later life. Significantly, it is the stories themselves which bring to bear the experience of policy as recalled by the narrators and highlights the narrator-researcher relationship in awakening and interpreting the stories, demonstrating the value of story as a method for understanding education. Examination of the literature surfaces the rise of neoliberal ideology in education and the impact of this on children’s learning experiences. In addition, the government’s promulgation of the feminisation of the primary school, constructed through the government’s casting of women in the primary phase is observed. Education makes claims about inclusion, equality, access and social justice, it is hailed as the leveller for a more just and equal society, the stories elicited in this research demonstrate that the many facets of the education system are complicit in the notion of power (James, 2015). Therefore, those in positions of educational and political power in our society should not be generators of prevailing inequalities of policy but seek to identify and remove barriers to raise standards for all. The recommendations call for a repositioning of teachers as experts, and not merely ‘deliverers’ of policy and curriculum context. The performativity agenda of testing and inspections drives behaviours in schools, which are neither allied to the ethos of many teachers, nor to their pedagogical and subject expertise, therefore political and legislative change is required for teachers to be able to reassert themselves, to reclaim their authority and to lobby for greater democracy within the school system, particularly in relation to policy and curriculum development. Raising the profile of teachers and pupils as stakeholders is critical so that all stakes are equally valued and understood. An original contribution of this research demonstrates the value of story in gaining insights into how policy was experienced by the narrators and from which lessons can be learned. Thus, through application of narrative inquiry, it can be argued that story is a powerful method of understanding the experience of policy as remembered by former pupils. The concept of awakening, in bringing the story to bear, is key in this research, expanding Clandinin and Connelly’s (2000) notion of wakefulness. This was evident in the co-production of stories and the artefacts that were presented through the opening of narrative spaces in the interview process to awaken the story. This study therefore makes an original contribution, by using narrative inquiry as a methodological basis for awakening stories from the past, to understand the experience of educational policy set against the lived experience of the narrators over six decades of primary school education.
    • A Novel Mathematical Layout Optimisation Method and Design Framework for Modularisation in Industrial Process Plants and SMRs

      Wood, Paul; Hall, Richard; Robertson, Daniel; Wrigley, Paul (University of DerbyInstitute for Innovation in Sustainable EngineeringUniversity of Derby, 2021-01-19)
      Nuclear power has been proposed as a low carbon solution to electricity generation when intermittent wind and solar renewable energy are not generating. Nuclear can provide co-generation through district heating, desalination, hydrogen production or aid in the process of producing synfuels. However, current new large nuclear power plants are expensive, time consuming to build and plagued by delays and cost increases. An emerging trend in the construction industry is to manufacture parts off the critical path, off site in factories, through modular design to reduce schedules and direct costs. A study from shipbuilding estimates work done in a factory may be 8 times more efficient than performing the same work on site. This productivity increase could be a solution to the problems in nuclear power plant construction. It is an emerging area and the International Atomic Energy Agency records over 50 Small Modular Reactor designs in commercial development worldwide. Most Small Modular Reactor designs focus on integrating the Nuclear Steam Supply System into one module. The aim of this Applied Research Programme was to develop an efficient and effective analysis tool for modularisation in industrial plant systems. The objectives were to understand the state of the art in modular construction and automating design through a literature review. The literature review in this thesis highlighted that automating earlier parts of the plant design process (equipment databases, selection tools and modular Process and Instrumentation Diagrams) have been developed in modular industrial process plant research but 3D layout has not been studied. It was also found that layout optimisation for industrial process plants has not considered modularisation. It was therefore proposed to develop a novel mathematical layout optimisation method for modularisation of industrial plants. Furthermore, the integration within the plant design process would be improved by developing a method to integrate the output of the optimisation with the plant design software. A case study was developed to analyse how this new method would compare against the current design process at Rolls-Royce. A systems engineering approach was taken to develop the capabilities of the optimisation by decomposing the three required constituents of modularisation: development of a model to optimise layout of modules utilising the module designs from previous research (Lapp, 1989), development of a model to optimise the layout equipment within modules and development of a combined and integrated model to optimise assignment and layout of equipment to modules. The objective function was to reduce pipe length as it can constitute up to 20% of process plant costs (Peters, Timmerhaus, & West, 2003) and to reduce the number of modules utilised. The results from the mathematical model were compared against previous layout designs (Lapp, 1989), highlighting a 46-88.7% reduction in pipework and considering pipework costs can be up to 20% of a process plant cost, this could be a significant saving. This does not consider the significant schedule and productivity savings by moving this work offsite. The second model (Bi) analysed the layout of the Chemical Volume and Control System and Boron Thermal Regeneration System into one and two modules, reducing pipe cost and installation by 67.6% and 85% respectively compared to the previously designed systems from (Lapp, 1989). The third model (Bii) considered the allocation of equipment to multiple modules, reducing pipe cost and installation by 80.5% compared to the previously designed systems from (Lapp, 1989), creating new data and knowledge. Mixed Integer Linear Programming formulations and soft constraints within the genetic algorithm function were utilised within MATLAB and Gurobi. Furthermore, by integrating the optimisation output with the plant design software to update the new locations of equipment and concept pipe routing, efficiency is vastly improved when the plant design engineer interprets the optimisation results. Not only can the mathematical layout optimisation analyse millions more possible layouts than an engineering designer, it can perform the function in a fraction of the time, saving time and costs. It at least gives the design engineer a suitable starting point which can be analysed and the optimisation model updated in an iterative process. This novel method was compared against the current design process at Rolls-Royce, it was found that an update to a module would take minutes with the novel optimisation and integration with the plant design software method, rather than days or weeks for the manual process. However, the disadvantage is that more upfront work is required to convert engineering knowledge into mathematical terms and relationships. The research is limited by the publicly available nuclear power plant data. Future work could include applying this novel method to wider industrial plant design to understand the broader impact. The mathematical optimisation model can be developed in the future to include constraints in other research such as assembly, operation and maintenance costs.
    • Studies in problem-based hospitality management education

      Rawlinson, Sarah; Zwaal, Wichard (University of DerbyStenden Hotel Management School Leeuwarden, 2021-01-05)
      This critical appraisal discusses and contextualizes the published works in order to demonstrate how the studies contribute to the knowledge about and development of problem-based learning (PBL) in the context of hospitality management education. Studies cover several aspects of problem-based learning illustrating strengths and challenges on both the conceptual and operational level related to the design and delivery of this educational concept in hospitality management education. First an overview will be provided of the basic principles for learning and a rationale for choosing problem-based learning as a promising educational concept for hospitality management education (HME). Next, research is reported on experiences and challenges with implementing and operationalising the key principles of PBL: constructive, collaborative, contextual, self-directed learning. Problem-based learning is an approach to education reflecting a constructivist conception of knowledge, teaching, learning and assessment. Studies were conducted to investigate whether these conceptions are shared and supported by staff and students, as a crucial condition for successful implementation of PBL. Regarding the operational level of PBL, results are reported of studies on some key drivers of the PBL process like the task, the seven-step procedure, teamwork, tutor interventions, and testing. In the final section of this critical appraisal some implications of the studies for the new educational concept design-based education (DBE) and curriculum configuration are discussed, including suggestions for further design-based research. The guiding question for this critical appraisal will be: what did the studies contribute to the knowledge about and development of problem-based learning and innovation in hospitality management education?
    • The Self-Portrait Experience, a dispositif for individual transformation and social activism

      Davies, Huw; Harris, Philip; Holmwood, Clive; Nunez Salmeron, Cristina (University of DerbyAssociation The Self-Portrait Experience, 2020-12-15)
      Cristina Nuñez’s artistic practice using self-portraiture began in 1988 as she turned the camera to herself to overcome self-stigma derived from addiction. A process evolved of a self-taught artistic practice into facilitating other people’s self-portraiture, leading her to devise The Self-Portrait Experience (SPEX). Since 2004 Nuñez holds SPEX workshops in diverse contexts, such as the penitentiary, mental health, addiction recovery and adolescent transition. A psychological framework allowed her to interrogate the effects of this practice on others and herself. However, Nuñez positions herself as a contemporary artist practitioner, not a therapist, who believes that the arts in themselves can be transformative. This research has culminated in the current investigation of the SPEX dispositif, a term used in contemporary France after Foucault and Agamben. In the workshops Nuñez holds around the world participants perform a ‘catalytic’ process by transforming emotional pain into what is referred to as artworks. Reviewing the multiple perceptions of the images produced allows participants to look at themselves through new lenses, as evidenced by data collected in her workshops over the years. SPEX uses the power of ubiquitous digital photography in a manner that subverts the common ‘selfie’ format, leveraging unconscious expression to explore emotions, in order to gain new insight and stimulate the creative process as reflexive. In this context, the SPEX dispositif defines as a set of measures taken for a specific artistic intervention. It involves plays of power, subverted in processes of subjectification, performativity and the deconstruction of dichotomies: ugly/beautiful, vulnerable/powerful, emotional/rational, unconscious/conscious, personal/public. Such processes can produce different kinds of knowledge: of oneself and one’s inner struggles, of the other and our place in relational and societal plays of power. Through the publication of self-portraits and autobiographical projects, the personal and socio-political dimensions are connected. Nuñez’s practice with herself and others proposes a dialogue between emotional expression and its mirroring effects on the public. The overarching goal is providing tangible societal benefits, in the form of viewer’s identification with the subjects of the images, rather than dissociation and alienation. Through their publication, autobiographical visual narratives can function as an “insurrection of subjugated knowledges” (Foucault 1980, p.82), to deconstruct labels and stereotypes often associated with stigmatised collectives. This critical evaluation catalogues the development of Nuñez’s bodies of work over thirty years, interrogates its theoretical framework and reflects on the impact on participants and viewers.
    • "I don't want to be touched all the time" - Street Harassment and the Indian Woman

      Holland, Fiona, Dr.; Williams, Sophie, Dr; Montague, Jane, Dr.; Khan, Sumana (University of DerbyCollege of Life & Natural Sciences, UoD, 2020-12-10)
      Street harassment is the gender-based sexual harassment of individuals in public spaces by strangers. Studies have shown that the majority of victims of street harassment are women and the perpetrators are men. Despite its serious implications on women’s quality of life and psychological well-being, street harassment remains an understudied area and has not been included in the wider ‘violence against women and girls’(VAWG) research and discourse. This research aimed to position street harassment as a distinct form of VAWG by exploring Indian women’s sense-making of their lived experiences of street harassment. The research was structured into two parts: Part 1 – The ‘Sociocultural Study’ implemented dispositive analysis of three recent Bollywood films of romantic genre to explore the construction of sociocultural discourses on Indian womanhood. Part 2 – The ‘Experiential Study’ explored the lived experiences of street harassment of adult Indian women by using Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA). The participants included four single women (aged 25-35) and four mothers (aged 35-50) to teenage daughters. The Sociocultural Study provided the cultural context for the Experiential Study. The findings of the Sociocultural Study indicated that the concept of womanhood is constructed by the Indian male gaze—the virginal sanskari (traditional) Indian woman is considered the symbol of Indian womanhood, whereas the “westernised” vamp is the morally corrupt temptress of men. These patriarchal constructions were rooted in deeply ingrained sexism, sexual objectification, and rape myth acceptance, proposed as the ‘triad’ of core mediators of street harassment by this research. The ‘triad’ featured significantly in the meaning-making of the participants in the Experiential study. The participants interpreted their experiences in themes of disempowerment, emotional isolation, loss of sense of agency, identity conflicts, and stress in family relationships. The findings aligned with UN’s definition of ‘violence against women’. Recommendations for future research include better theoretical developments to explain street harassment; investigation of potential long-term effects of street harassment in women such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD); designing studies with more male participants to explore an ‘insider’ view into harassment; and finally, development of new standardised quantitative instruments to measure various aspects of street harassment.
    • An Exploration of Human Dignity as a Foundation for Spiritual Leadership

      Wond, Tracey; Phil, Henry; Kyle, John Wesley (University of DerbyCollege of Business, Law and Social Sciences, 2020-12-08)
      This research is situated at the nexus of human dignity and spiritual leadership theory. It critically explores human dignity, an expression of human value and worth, for its potential as the basis of an advancement to spiritual leadership, a contemporary organisational leadership theory. Following this critical exploration, the thesis proposes that human dignity is an implied element of spiritual leadership that, if made explicit, represents a valuable advancement to the theory. Based on the findings of the research, specific advancements to the theory are proposed that incorporate the acknowledgement of and respect for human dignity as spiritual leadership behaviours. In the research, these behaviours were seen to contribute positively to the desired outcome of spiritual leadership, namely an increase in the perception of well-being experienced by leaders and followers. The research offers a contribution to the field of organisational leadership by exploring the linkage between human dignity, the elements of spiritual leadership, and higher-order needs associated with well- being in the workplace, such as meaning-making, sense of purpose, and the sense of belonging. The research involved a qualitative field study of individual contributors, mid-level managers, and executives in a variety of organisations. Through semi-structured interviews, participants were invited to share their ideas and lived experiences regarding human dignity and the elements of spiritual leadership. The primary findings fall into three thematic categories, each of which is explored in detail in the thesis. The first theme is that participants perceived their dignity to be acknowledged and respected when leaders include them in decision-making processes. Inclusive decision-making is a leadership behaviour consistent with the ideals of spiritual leadership practice. Second, participants also reported that leadership behaviours that make them feel seen, known, and trusted, contribute to their sense of dignity as well as their sense of “mattering” in the workplace. Mattering and dignity are two related concepts that are, in turn, closely linked with the sense of calling and sense of membership. Finally, participants expressed that thoughts about human dignity are elements of the “inner life”, consisting of the values and attitudes that inform and motivate outward behaviour. These thematic findings are consistent with the expected outcomes of spiritual leadership and its emphasis on the inner life of the leader. Together, they form the basis for the human dignity advancements proposed to the theory.
    • Numerical Study of Track-Trailer Gap Aerodynamics

      Yang, Zhiyin; Lu, Yiling; Charles, Terrance Priestley (University of Derby, 2020-12-08)
      Aerodynamics have become an essential design process for ground vehicles in order to improve the fuel consumption by lowering the emissions along with increasing the range of vehicles using different source of power. A significant portion of the world CO2 emissions is a result of ground vehicles with a more significant portion of these contributed by trucks. The boxy nature of trucks is the desired shape to carry maximum payload. However, a box shaped geometry is not aerodynamically efficient. Several manufacturers have developed aerodynamic add on devices that are optimized to the shape of the truck, in order to achieve gains in lowering emission and improving range by deeper understanding of the flow physics around the vehicle. The thesis reports an in-depth understanding of the flow field within the gap region of a tractor trailer combination truck and how several aerodynamic add on devices reduce the overall drag of a truck. The gap region of a truck typically contributes to about 20-25% of the overall vehicle drag and hence presents an opportunity for considerable level of drag reduction. A basic two box bluff body (2D & 3D) model was used to investigate how the flow field changes by changing the gap width between the two bluff bodies. A section of the thesis investigates the sudden increase in drag coefficient of the downstream cube around 2D tandem bluff bodies. Distinct flow patterns were observed in the gap and around the 2D tandem at different gap ratios. The sudden change in drag coefficient for the 2D downstream bluff body is well captured numerically, which is due to the wake of the upstream cube impinging onto the front face of the downstream cube. A steady increase in drag coefficient is witnessed for the 3D cubes which are consistent with previous experimental findings. The steady increase in drag coefficient is due to the vortical structures formed around the 3D cubes which are different, which consist of a smooth transition. Hence, they result in steady increase in drag coefficient. A second study was conducted on a realistic truck like test case with the simplified truck model where the leading edges of the tractor were rounded off to manipulate the flow separation. As a result of leading edge rounding off the flow separation reduced significantly resulting in a major portion of the flow remain attached to the lateral walls of the tractor. This was seen to increase the flow entering the gap region between the tractor and trailer. Finally, several add on devices which were subdivided based on tractor and trailer mounted devices were numerically assessed with several other devices within the gap region. Significant level of drag reduction was achieved for the entire truck with these add on devices. The highest drag reduction was achieved with the base bleeding technique. Overall, the research has shown that it is important to control the flow condition within the gap region and maintain an even pressure on the front face of the trailer. The base bleeding method proved to be a vital technique to further reduce drag.
    • Adversarial Thresholding Semi-Bandits

      Anjum, Ashiq; Bagdasar, Ovidiu; Xue, Yong; Bower, Craig (University of Derby, 2020-12)
      The classical multi-armed bandit is one of the most common examples of sequential decision-making, either by trading-off between exploiting and exploring arms to maximise some payoff or purely exploring arms until the optimal arm is identified. In particular, a bandit player wanting to only pull arms with stochastic feedback exceeding a given threshold, has been studied extensively in a pure exploration context. However, numerous applications fail to be expressed, where a player wishes to balance the need to observe regions of an uncertain environment that are currently interesting (exploit) and checking if neglected regions have become interesting since last observed (explore). We introduce the adversarial thresholding semi-bandit problem: a non-stochastic bandit model, where a player wants to only pull (potentially several) arms with feedback meeting some threshold condition. Our main objective is to design algorithms that meet the requirements of the adversarial thresholding semi-bandit problem theoretically, empirically and algorithmically, for a given application. In other words, we want to develop a machine that learns to select options according to some threshold condition and adapts quickly if the feedback from selecting an option unexpectedly changes. This work has many real-world applications and is motivated by online detector control monitoring in high-energy physics experiments, on the Large Hadron Collider. We begin by describing the adversarial thresholding semi-bandit problem (ATSBP) in terms of a multi-armed bandit with multiple plays and extending the stochastic thresholding bandit problem to the adversarial setting. The adversarial thresholding exponentially-weighted exploration and exploitation with multiple plays algorithm (T-Exp3.M) and an algorithm combining label efficient prediction (LET-Exp3.M), are introduced that satisfy theoretical and computational Research specifications, but either perform poorly or fail completely under certain threshold conditions. To meet empirical performance requirements, we propose the dynamic label efficient adversarial thresholding exponentially-weighted exploration and exploitation with multiple plays algorithm (dLET-Exp3.M). Whilst computational requirements match those for T-Exp3.M, theoretical upper bounds on performance are proven to be worse. We also introduce an ATSBP algorithm (AliceBandit) that decomposes the action of pulling an arm into selection and observation decisions. Computational complexity and empirical performance under two different threshold conditions are significantly improved, compared with exponentially weighted adversarial thresholding semi-bandits. Theoretical upper bounds on performance are also significantly improved, for certain environments. In the latter part of this thesis, we address the challenge of efficiently monitoring multiple condition parameters in high-energy experimental physics. Due to the extreme conditions experienced in heavy-ion particle colliders, the power supply to any device exceeding safe operating parameters is automatically shut down or tripped, to preserve integrity and functionality of the device. Prior to recent upgrades, a device or channel trip would halt data-taking for the entire experiment. Post-trip recovery requires a costly procedure both in terms of expertise and data-taking time. After the completion of the current upgrading phase (scheduled for 2021), the detector will collect data continuously. In this new regime, a channel trip will result in only the affected components of the experiment being shut down. However, since the new upgraded experiment will enable data-taking to increase by a factor of 100, each trip will have a significant impact on the experiments ability to provide physicists with reliable data to analyse. We demonstrate that adversarial thresholding semi-bandits efficiently identify device channels either exceeding a fixed threshold or deviating by more than a prescribed range prior to a trip, extending the state-of-the-art in high-energy physics detector control.
    • Exploring Observational Pain Assessment Tools for Individuals with Moderate-to-Severe Dementia

      Ainslea, Cross; Dawn, Forman; Kreshnik, Hoti; Babicova, Ivana (University of DerbyCollege of Health, Psychology and Social Care (University of Derby), 2020-11-26)
      The global increase in the prevalence of dementia has provoked a multidisciplinary response from researchers, policymakers, educators and clinical sectors. There are many important aspects of care, which need to be considered when looking after an individual with dementia. One such aspect of care, and a fundamental human right, is appropriate pain treatment and management. Due to the progressive neurodegenerative nature of dementia, individuals in the moderate to severe stages of the condition are often unable to self-report their pain, therefore health professionals rely on the use of observational pain assessments. Unfortunately, pain continues to be under-recognised, underestimated and under-treated in people living with moderate-to-severe dementia. There is, therefore, a need to enhance observational pain assessment, to ensure that appropriate pain treatment and management is implemented. This thesis set out the following aim and objectives: Aim: To examine the psychometric properties, in terms of validity and reliability, of observational pain assessment tools for people living with moderate-to-severe dementia. Objective (a) to conduct a systematic review to further investigate the current state of observational pain assessment tools. Objective (b) to explore feasibility and use of observational pain assessment tools, specifically the Abbey Pain Scale and the PainChek®, in a UK care home setting. Objective (c) to validate and evaluate the psychometric properties of PainChek® in a UK care home. Objective (d) to investigate three case studies of individuals living with dementia who demonstrated atypical pain behaviours. The aim and objectives were accomplished by conducting four studies. The first study was a systematic review which examined the psychometric properties of observational pain assessment tools. The results from the seventeen studies which met criteria for inclusion indicated a highly heterogeneous, indicating that validity and reliability measures, such as inter-rater reliability or concurrent validity, were highly diverse across observational tools which were tested for psychometric qualities. The second study utilised exploratory qualitative methods to explore perceived feasibility of two observational pain assessment tools; Abbey Pain Scale and PainChek®. Transcripts from the semi-structured interviews were analysed using a thematic analysis. Four main themes were identified; strengths of the Abbey Pain Scale, limitations of the Abbey Pain Scale, strengths of PainChek®, limitations of PainChek® and critical factors of pain assessment. The third study focused on validating PainChek®; a semi-automated observational pain assessment tool in a UK care home. Twenty-two participants diagnosed with dementia and a painful condition were recruited. Over a period of sixteen weeks, psychometric properties in terms of validity and reliability of PainChek® were evaluated by direct comparison to the Abbey Pain Scale. Three hundred and two paired pain assessments were completed. The analysis of the data revealed excellent validity and reliability results, demonstrating that PainChek® would be a suitable tool to asses’ pain in people with dementia in UK care homes. The fourth and final study explored three case studies in depth. During the data collection in the previous study, three participants were consistently expressing atypical and unexpected pain behaviours. The investigation into the three individual case studies has highlighted the importance and growing need for increasing interprofessional education and learning, and a consideration of how uncommon expressions of pain could hinder the accuracy of pain assessment. The research conducted for this PhD thesis reiterated the on-going issue with under-recognition, underestimation and under-treatment of pain in people with dementia. The overall results collectively investigated and contributed findings towards the current knowledge of pain assessment in people with moderate to advanced dementia, by presenting an in-depth mixed-methods approach. In addition, the results from this thesis demonstrated excellent psychometric properties of PainChek® in a UK care home and explored the current limitations of pain assessment and offered possible solutions. To prevent poor treatment and management of pain in individuals with dementia, regular and accurate use of observational pain assessment tools is recommended. Finally, while feasibility and appropriateness of the use of the PainChek® were explored, further research focusing on implementation is needed to investigate the pragmatic and practical aspects of using an electronic device in care homes.
    • An investigation into the role of acceptance and related factors in quality of life among renal dialysis patients.

      Mitchell, Kathryn; Elander, James; Stewart, Paul; Stalker, Carol (University of DerbyCollege of Health, Psychology and Social Care, University of Derby, 2020-11-13)
      For patients with end stage renal disease, renal replacement therapy (RRT) is essential to a patient’s survival. Haemodialysis is one RRT, and a growing body of evidence has suggested that how patients relate to this treatment is associated with both clinical and psychological outcomes. Adjusting to illness is a complex process (Dennison, Moss-Morris, & Chalder, 2009; Moss-Morris, 2013; Walker, Jackson, & Littlejohn, 2004) and one factor identified as important in other chronic conditions is acceptance. Evidence supports that acceptance can be important in helping patients manage conditions that cannot be improved through medication or therapies (McCracken, 1998; Veehof, Oskam, Schreurs, & Bohlmeijer, 2011). Findings from studies across a range of chronic conditions (Brassington et al., 2016; Poppe, Crombez, Hanoulle, Vogelaers, & Petrovic, 2013; Van Damme, De Waegeneer, & Debruyne, 2016) suggest that more positive acceptance of illness facilitates improvements in patients overall quality of life (QoL). However, there is limited research addressing the role of acceptance of illness and the impact on dialysis patients. This thesis has evaluated the role of acceptance and associated psychological variables in haemodialysis patients to develop an understanding of the influence of acceptance and to enable the development of targeted acceptance-based interventions. This thesis aims to; gain an understanding of what acceptance means for dialysis patients; compare the influence of acceptance and associated psychological factors on patient outcomes, and examine the longitudinal relationships between acceptance and quality of life for dialysis patients. A mixed-methods approach was utilised and four methodologies were adopted; a systematic review evaluated the impact of acceptance on outcomes for patients with end-stage renal disease and how patients viewed acceptance in relation to these outcomes; cross-sectional studies compared the influence of acceptance, psychological and clinical variables on quality of life outcomes; a qualitative study explored patients experiences of accepting dialysis treatment, and a longitudinal study tested the impact of acceptance and psychological variables at 6 and 12 months post baseline. All participants were dialysis patients recruited from a single hospital site; a total of 102 participants were recruited. 98 were retained for analyses at baseline and 50 retained at 12 months. Ethical approval was obtained prior to the commencement of recruitment. The research generated several important findings. Firstly, it highlighted that acceptance in dialysis was complex, with qualitative findings indicating that acceptance of illness in dialysis patients related to themes of ‘accepting the necessity’, ‘accepting the functional aspects’, ‘acceptance from experience’ and ‘acceptance from support’. This resulted in the proposal of a conceptual model utilising acceptance mindset to address how patients reach acceptance and how they interpret their illness and treatment. Secondly, relationships between acceptance, psychological variables and QoL were identified; acceptance is a significant predictor of kidney disease QoL and physical QoL, with depression found to be a significant predictor for kidney disease QoL and mental QoL and was a significant mediator between acceptance and QoL. These findings demonstrate that acceptance is an important component of QoL in dialysis patients but also highlights the associations to other psychological variables. Theses associations in the cross-sectional study were confirmed longitudinally. Thirdly, tests of longitudinal associations demonstrated that although there were no significant changes in overall acceptance levels over time, group changes masked individual differences. The individual changes in acceptance were associated with changes in mental QoL and kidney disease QoL. Changes in acceptance rather than depression were predictive of mental QoL and kidney disease QoL at 6 months. At 12 months changes in acceptance and depression were important predictors of mental QoL and kidney disease QoL. The overall findings identified that acceptance of illness is an important aspect related to QoL for dialysis patients. Acceptance is a complex construct and relates to psychological factors, particularly depression. The qualitative analyses highlighted important areas related to acceptance and these were supported in the more complex analyses of QoL, these are areas that need considering in any future intervention developments. Although group acceptance did not change over time evidence at the individual level suggests that there may be benefit in targeting of interventions. Developing specific acceptance interventions targeted at dialysis patients may improve patients QoL and reduce the overall burden.
    • Developing a Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy Treatment Programme Designed to Promote Hopefulness and Self-Esteem in Mental Health Service Users Recently Diagnosed with a Psychotic Illness: A Pilot Study to Explore Service-Users’ Experiences of Accessibility, Engagement and Efficacy

      Townend, Michael; Strickland-Hodge, Barry; Pearson, Daniel James (University of DerbyLeicestershire Partnership NHS Trust, 2020-11)
      This study sits within a wider research agenda, the aim of which is to develop a novel psychological therapy programme designed to target hopelessness and compromised self-esteem in young people recently diagnosed with a psychotic illness. The aspiration is to develop a programme that is experienced as accessible and engaging and perceived to be of value. It is anticipated that that process will progress through several stages and a number of iterations. The primary objectives of this specific piece of research were to undertake a first piloting of the Therapy Programme, gather evaluative feedback from participant-service users, and fine-tune the approach. The secondary objective was to explore the perceived value of the programme with regard to ‘proof of concept’. The research design combined the methodological rigour of Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis with a mixed-methods focus on data, underpinned by the philosophical paradigm of critical realism. Quantitative data was collected through the completion of outcome measures pre, during and post-therapy. Qualitative data was gathered through the facilitation of semi-structured feedback interviews with participant-service-users shortly after the completion of each of their Therapy Programmes. Participants were followed-up at 2 years from the commencement of their therapy to ascertain the subsequent trajectory of their lives and to explore reflections on their experiences of the programme from a perspective of temporal distance. Eight Early Psychosis Service clients were recruited to receive the Therapy Programme. Three withdrew from the therapy. Another completed the Programme, but failed to complete all of the research requirements. One completer-participant experienced a psychotic relapse shortly before the end of therapy. The principal purposes of the research were the elicitation of critical reflections on the Therapy Programme and meaningful recommendations for its improvement. There was some evidence of reticence amongst participants regarding the expression of critical statements. Where more critical observations were expressed, they focussed primarily on the relative balance and chronological ordering of different elements. The consensus recommendation was for the ‘pure’ elements of the approach, including direct attention to the cognitive-constructs of hope and self-esteem, to proceed the consideration of more applied goals. There was a strong collective recommendation to allocate more attention to addressing unhelpful illness narratives. A Participant Handbook, written as a resource for those involved in the therapy, was positively received with regard to design. Participants, however, recommended significant change to the complexity of its content. Of the four completer-participants, three showed substantial improvements in reported hope, self-esteem and wellbeing over the period in which the therapy was delivered. Those gains were sustained at follow-up. The participant who experienced a psychotic relapse showed limited improvements on all measures at the end of the treatment period, but had progressed significantly at follow-up. In each case, reported scores on the outcome measures were supported by substantial success in negotiated life-goals. Participant feedback regarding the programme, post-therapy and at follow-up, was generally very positive, with all participants identifying causal connections between the therapy, achievement of therapy and life goals, and subsequent improved outcome scores. To accommodate a priority focus of qualitative data, participant numbers were small and there was no access to normative or comparative data for the service user population. The limitations of the sample size were compounded by a high rate of attrition. The delay to follow-up introduced additional confounding variables. As a consequence of the study-design, therefore, quantitative data can only be regarded as providing indicative evidence of reported improvements across the measures of wellbeing. It cannot be said to evidence a causal connection between therapy and identified improvements or to support statements regarding the efficacy of the approach. Finally, although participants were recruited explicitly to be collaborators in the evaluation and betterment of the Therapy Programme, reflections appeared to be somewhat biased towards a validation of the approach and critical evaluations, although present, were limited. The credibility of these observations is, further, undermined by the design-decision to have the therapist conduct the post-therapy feedback interviews. The primary objective of the research was to generate meaningful recommendations for the improvement of the Therapy Programme. That purpose was achieved. The secondary objective was to consider the programme with regard to ‘proof of concept’. Subject to the limitations detailed above, the level of improvement reported over the period in which the therapy was offered, together with the fact that those gains had not been lost at follow-up, tentatively supports an argument for further development of the programme.
    • Exploring the Conceptual Constructions of the Mobile Phone Within the Neoliberal Digital Age: A Thematic Analysis

      Howard, Chris; Hallam, Jenny; Montague, Jane; Smyth, Michael (University of DerbyPsychology, College of Life and Natural Sciences, University of Derby, 2020-10-27)
      This thesis is an investigation into the ways in which mobile phone users’ contextualised understanding of the mobile phone may have shaped their mobile phone practices and subjectivity within the cultural narratives of the neoliberal digital age in the UK. The proliferation of research literature focused on mobile phone practices has been dominated by mainstream psychology’s pathologised rationales for differences between mobile phone users’ practices. However, the distinction between normal and problematic practices are not clearly defined across studies. This thesis adopts a critical perspective to consider the socially integrated relationship between meaning, subjectivity and behaviour in order to inform the current rationales for differences between mobile phone users’ practices from an underrepresented perspective on the topic. The thesis is collection of four discrete but interconnected studies which progress from exploring the culturally accessible conceptualisation of the mobile phone presented by the mass media to the culturally contextualised understanding of the mobile phone by mobile phone users. Mass media data were collected from UK national newspaper articles about the mobile phone published between 1985 (first consumer handheld mobile phones in the UK) and 2019, to provide a wide historical context, and website-based advertising of mobile phones accessible to the UK population during 2019. Data was collected from mobile phone users through participant-generated reviews of their mobile phone by 164 self-selected mobile phone users and in-depth interviews with 20 mobile phone users positioned as at-risk problem users by the psychology literature. The data collected was analysed using an inductive thematic analysis informed by social constructionism. The analysis of the news media revealed that the conceptualisation of the mobile phone shifted from a business tool accessible by a wealthy few to a normal need of modern living for the masses which is integral to the user’s identity. It was argued that current cultural conceptualisations of the mobile phone were shaped by societal powers related to neoliberalism and regulation. The conceptualisations related to the advertisements promoted a normal, essential, desirable and continually developing contemporary tool of self-improvement, empowerment, independence, control, social connection and identity development. Mobile phone users’ conceptualisations related to the deep meaning that essential lifestyle enhancing activities had for them and positioned themselves as attached to their lifestyle and identity development that was accessible through their mobile phone practices which they positioned as culturally normal and essential to a modern lifestyle. For the users positioned as at-risk problem users, the mobile phone was an emotionally complex object which was related to emotional support and emotional tensions, in conflict at times. The relationship between the mass media’s conceptualisations of the mobile phone and mobile phone users’ contextualised understanding showed that cultural narratives, fashioned by societal powers, shaped users’ understanding and practices. It was concluded that mobile phone users were attached to the continual development of their lifestyle, identity and knowing that they experience through their mobile phone practices rather than attached to the device. Mobile phone practices are a symptom of neoliberal digital culture rather than a problematic symptom of the user. Future research must sustain the critical perspective to build upon the findings of this thesis and explore the identities of those who actively resist using mobile phones with consideration to their contextualised personal interests in order to further inform the distinction between normal and problematic mobile phone practices.
    • The design and feasibility of a work-focused relational group-CBT treatment programme to enhance job retention in employed service-users with moderate-severe recurrent depression.

      Townend, Michael; Strickland-Hodge, Barry; Walker, Nicola (University of DerbyHealth and Social Care, 2020-10-15)
      Background: Employees with moderate-severe recurrent depression are at risk of losing their jobs. A search of the literature revealed that most psychotherapeutic interventions are not work-focused, and there are none that have been specifically designed to enhance job retention in employed service-users of UK Community Mental Health Teams. A subsequent update of the research evidence using the same literature search strategy plus another search with more stringent inclusion criteria found several studies of work-focused psychotherapeutic interventions. However, but there is still a gap in terms of work-focused psychotherapeutic interventions specifically designed for employees with more severe mental health problems. Methods: The Medical Research Council guidance for the development and evaluation of complex interventions was used throughout this study. Firstly, an effectiveness review of relevant psychotherapeutic interventions revealed several over-arching principles which appeared to underpin their effects such as using a care pathway incorporating multi-disciplinary teamwork, guideline concordance, informed clinical decision-making, tracking of progress, and the use of outreach to encourage clients to complete treatment. Secondly, a stakeholder consultation was undertaken during the planning period, and realist analysis of the focus group data identified six plausible mechanisms of change which allowed for modification of the new intervention design and refinement of the programme theory. Thirdly, piloting involved a small feasibility study using a quasi-experimental pre-post design with eight participants which generated both quantitative and qualitative data regarding clinical and work outcomes. Fourthly, a further stakeholder consultation was undertaken during the reviewing period to consider re-design of the new intervention in terms of improving acceptability and accessibility. Finally, a process of mixed methods data integration was used to make recommendations for further implementation and evaluation in a definitive trial. Results: Six provisional Context-Intervention-Mechanism-Outcome (CIMO) configurations were developed into a programme theory. Overall, implementation and evaluation of the new intervention were feasible although problems were encountered in recruiting sufficient numbers for randomisation, and with collecting follow up data. It was also expensive to provide compared to CBT programmes in primary and secondary mental healthcare services. Outcomes suggest the new intervention is a promising treatment for moderate-severe recurrent depression for some women and may help them in maintaining their employment. Acceptability could be improved by making the new intervention more interesting and stimulating, with a focus on coping over the long-term. Accessibility could be improved by making the new intervention more understandable, delivering it at the worksite, and making it peer-led. Conclusions: Job retention for employed service-users may be enhanced if the tertiary individual level Treatment Programme is re-designed as a primary organisational level Training (and staff support) Programme informed by group-CBT.
    • Multiprocessor System-on-Chips based Wireless Sensor Network Energy Optimization

      Panneerselvam, John; Xue, Yong; Ali, Haider (University of DerbyDepartment of Electronics, Computing and Mathematics, 2020-10-08)
      Wireless Sensor Network (WSN) is an integrated part of the Internet-of-Things (IoT) used to monitor the physical or environmental conditions without human intervention. In WSN one of the major challenges is energy consumption reduction both at the sensor nodes and network levels. High energy consumption not only causes an increased carbon footprint but also limits the lifetime (LT) of the network. Network-on-Chip (NoC) based Multiprocessor System-on-Chips (MPSoCs) are becoming the de-facto computing platform for computationally extensive real-time applications in IoT due to their high performance and exceptional quality-of-service. In this thesis a task scheduling problem is investigated using MPSoCs architecture for tasks with precedence and deadline constraints in order to minimize the processing energy consumption while guaranteeing the timing constraints. Moreover, energy-aware nodes clustering is also performed to reduce the transmission energy consumption of the sensor nodes. Three distinct problems for energy optimization are investigated given as follows: First, a contention-aware energy-efficient static scheduling using NoC based heterogeneous MPSoC is performed for real-time tasks with an individual deadline and precedence constraints. An offline meta-heuristic based contention-aware energy-efficient task scheduling is developed that performs task ordering, mapping, and voltage assignment in an integrated manner. Compared to state-of-the-art scheduling our proposed algorithm significantly improves the energy-efficiency. Second, an energy-aware scheduling is investigated for a set of tasks with precedence constraints deploying Voltage Frequency Island (VFI) based heterogeneous NoC-MPSoCs. A novel population based algorithm called ARSH-FATI is developed that can dynamically switch between explorative and exploitative search modes at run-time. ARSH-FATI performance is superior to the existing task schedulers developed for homogeneous VFI-NoC-MPSoCs. Third, the transmission energy consumption of the sensor nodes in WSN is reduced by developing ARSH-FATI based Cluster Head Selection (ARSH-FATI-CHS) algorithm integrated with a heuristic called Novel Ranked Based Clustering (NRC). In cluster formation parameters such as residual energy, distance parameters, and workload on CHs are considered to improve LT of the network. The results prove that ARSH-FATI-CHS outperforms other state-of-the-art clustering algorithms in terms of LT.
    • The influence of caffeine expectancies on simulated soccer performance and perceptual states

      Hooton, Andy; Sheffield, David; Higgins, Matthew; Shabir, Akbar (University of DerbyThe University of Derby, School of Human Sciences, 2020-10)
      Caffeine (CAF) is the most widely consumed ergogenic substance in sport and has been reported to improve various attributes associated with successful soccer performance including, endurance capacity, gross motor skill performance and cognitions. These benefits are typically ascribed to pharmacological mechanisms (i.e. central nervous and peripheral tissue stimulation). However, the psychological and perceptual permutations that are associated with CAF expectancies are largely unaddressed in most experimental designs but could be as important as CAF pharmacology in understanding if/how CAF elicits an ergogenic response on sport performance. As the consumption of pharmacologically active CAF may not be necessary in observing a CAF associated ergogenic response, this body of work may prove beneficial to individuals suffering from pre-existing health concerns (e.g. hypertension, genetic polymorphisms, depression, insomnia etc.), CAF habituation, and those participating in late evening sports competitions whereby CAF consumption may impair sleep quality/duration. The main aim of this thesis is to evaluate and explore the psychobiological effects of expectancies associated with oral CAF consumption on various facets of simulated soccer performance and perceptual states. This was achieved via completion of the following objectives: (1) conducting a systematic review and meta-analyses pertaining to literature exploring the potential psychobiological effects of CAF on sport and exercise (A) and cognitive performance (B) (2) exploration of the potential psychobiological effects of CAF on high-intensity intermittent endurance capacity, reaction time and soccer skill proficiency (3) exploration of the potential psychobiological effects of CAF on perceptual fatigue and mood states (4) exploration of the potential psychobiological effects of CAF on subjective perceptions using the double-dissociation design but in particular the mixed methods approach (Brooks et al., 2015). There remains a severe under representation of the mixed methods design in the literature pertaining to the phenomenon of CAF expectancies on sport, exercise, and cognitive performance. The mixed methods design and associated triangulation of quantitative and qualitative data is fundamental to validly compare CAF’s psychological versus pharmacological impetus. Prior to this thesis, only two other studies (Beedie et al., 2006; Duncan et al., 2009) implemented the mixed methods design, with neither providing a rigorous account of methodological decisions, researcher reflexivity, and/or evidence of applying an epistemological framework. These factors were incorporated within the current thesis and improved the quality of data collection, analysis, and reflection. The results of our, novel, meta-analyses demonstrated that all studies exploring the psychobiological effects of CAF on sport and exercise performance displayed a beneficial effect (p=0.01) with an overall moderate effect size (Cohen’s d (ES): 0.40) observed. In contrast, no significant effect was observed for studies exploring the psychobiological effects of CAF on cognitive performance (p=0.142) with a small effect size (ES=0.1) observed. Though, due to significant methodological heterogeneity associated with studies exploring the psychobiological effects of CAF on cognitive performance, any associated implications here should be taken with caution. Experimental study 1 explored the influence of CAF expectancies on facets of simulated soccer performance (e.g. exercise capacity, reaction time and passing ability (LSPT)) and perceptual states via utilisation of a mixed-methods approach and double-dissociation design. Exercise capacity was greater (p<0.05) for CAF psychology (given placebo (PLA)/told CAF) (623 ± 117 s) versus pharmacology (given CAF/told PLA) (578 ± 99 s) with all participants running longer during psychology. This benefit appeared to be driven by CAF expectancies and reductions in perceptual effort. Interestingly, positive perceptions for told CAF conditions appeared to impair BATAK performance via potential CAF over reliance. In contrast, negative perceptions possibly facilitated BATAK performance via augmented conscious effort. A similar trend to BATAK was observed for LSPT performance. Following the completion of experimental study 1 it became apparent that the techniques used to modulate expectancies across experimental conditions (i.e. told PLA/CAF groups) here or any other study with a primary aim of exploring the influence of CAF expectancies on sport, exercise and/or cognitive performance, require validation. This was the premise of experimental study 2. No meaningful findings were observed from baseline to post-intervention across any outcome measure during experimental study 2. This lack of effect may be related to environmental factors, whereby individuals completed trials in classrooms and/or a home cinema, prior to lectures/seminars and/or social interactions, respectively. In contrast, participants in experimental study 1 were administered the appropriate expectancy modulating techniques after they had perceived to consume PLA or CAF within an environment that necessitated an immediate importance for CAF (e.g. prior to exercise performance). In summary, the novelty and original contribution of the current body of research entails: completion of a systematic review and meta-analyses pertaining to the influence of CAF expectancies on sport, exercise and cognitive performance; assessment of the influence CAF expectancies may have on simulated soccer performance; the implementation of a mixed methods approach and double dissociation design; an in depth rationale, description and set of instructions for the utilisation of the mixed methods approach in any future research, including the use of an epistemological framework; a summary of ecological factors that are fundamental in understanding the phenomenon of CAF expectancies across sport and exercise performance. With respect of the main findings from the experimental data contained in this thesis: the benefits associated with CAF expectancies may better suit tasks that entail lesser cognitive/skill specific attributes but greater gross motor function (e.g. cycling, weightlifting, running etc.) and this is likely due to reduced perceptual effort. Moreover, future studies aiming to validate expectancy modulating techniques or generally assessing expectancies should provide a greater immediate importance for CAF and this may be achieved by replicating environmental and/or psychosocial conditions associated with sport performance (e.g. the utilisation of a performance measure) and the perception for CAF consumption.
    • COMPARING THE ACUTE EFFECTS OF WARM-UP STRATEGIES USING FREE-WEIGHT AND VARIABLE RESISTANCE ON STRENGTH AND POWER PERFORMANCE

      Kay, Tony; Blazevich, Tony; Giakas, Giannis; Hooton, Andy; Akehurst, Sally; Mina, Minas A. (University of DerbyCollege of Science and Engineering, 2020-09-08)
      Warm-up routines are typically designed to precondition the neuromuscular system for enhanced performance and reduced injury risk during subsequent high-intensity physical activities, including during strength training. As such, identifying an effective warm-up routine to augment muscular performance is of clear importance to strength (and other) coaches and athletes. Incorporating variable resistance (VR) via the use of chains or elastic bands during strength training alters the loading characteristics during exercises to impose a greater mechanical stimulus, however the impact of VR on subsequent free-weight exercise performance is unknown. Therefore, the aims of this thesis were to examine the acute effects of conditioning VR exercise compared to free-weight resistance (FWR) exercise on subsequent one-repetition maximum (1-RM) back squat and countermovement vertical jump (CMJ) height performance after the performance of a comprehensive, test-specific warm-up, and to examine possible alterations to mechanics and neuromuscular activity underpinning any changes. Techniques including 3D motion analysis, electromyography (EMG) and ground reaction force measurement were used in three studies on recreationally active volunteers experienced in squatting and jumping. In Study 1, significantly greater 1-RM squat-lift load (6.2 ± 5.0%; p < 0.01) and mean eccentric-phase knee extensor EMG amplitude (32.2 ± 6.7%; p < 0.01) were found after the chain-loaded resistance (CLR) warm-up, where an increasing load is applied as the subject raises their body with the load, compared to the FWR condition. However, no statistical differences (p > 0.05) were detected in concentric phase EMG, knee angular velocity or peak knee flexion angle. Thus, performing a CLR warm-up enhanced subsequent free-weight 1-RM performance without kinematic changes; these data were considered to indicate a real 1-RM increase as the mechanics of the lift were not influenced. Study 2 followed an identical methodological design, however elastic bands were used to provide an inexpensive, portable, easily-implemented, and therefore more practical method of altering the load-time characteristics of the squat lift through VR. Significantly greater 1-RM squat load (7.7 ± 6.2%; p < 0.01) with lower peak and mean eccentric (16–19%; p < 0.05) and concentric (12–21%; p < 0.05) knee angular velocities were found after the elastic band (EB) warm-up compared to the FWR condition. As EB resistance evoked greater mean improvements in squat performance than the CLR used in Study 1, the influence of FWR and EB squat exercises following a comprehensive warm-up were compared using a more functional, CMJ, task at different post-exercise time points (i.e. 30 s, 4 min, 8 min, and 12 min) (Study 3). No changes in any variable were found after the FWR warm-up (p > 0.05). However, statistical (p < 0.05) and practically-meaningful increases were detected in CMJ height (5.3-6.5%), net impulse (2.7-3.3%), take-off velocity (2.7-3.8%), peak power (4.4-5.9%), kinetic (7.1-7.2%) and potential (5.4-6.7%) energy, peak normalised rate of force development (12.9-19.1%), peak concentric knee angular velocities (3.1-4.1%) and mean concentric vastus lateralis (VL) EMG activity (27.5-33.4%) at all time points after the EB warm-up condition. Thus, when a complete CMJ-specific warm-up was provided, FWR squat had no additional effect on CMJ performance however the alteration of the squat lift force-time characteristics using EB led to a substantial CMJ enhancement. The findings from the present series of studies have important implications for research study design as the warm-up imposed and the resistive modality selected appear to influence subsequent movement performances, i.e. 1-RM back squat or CMJ performances. In previous studies, standardised (or no) warm-up protocols imposed before the baseline testing have been associated with subsequent enhancements in squat lift and CMJ performances following conditioning contractions, although it is unclear whether this is a consequence of acute neuromuscular alteration relating to the conditioning contractions or to the warm-up itself. Collectively, the present findings, show that physical performance can be enhanced in at least some conditions by application of conditioning contractions even after completion of a comprehensive, test-specific warm-up, which have important practical implications in the formulation of pre-performance warm-up routines where maximal force production is an important goal.