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Allison, Zachary RThe Need for Virtue in an Age of Climate Change
Master of Arts (MA), Ohio University, 2018, Philosophy (Arts and Sciences)
Dale Jamieson, Stephen Gardiner, Allen Thompson, and Byron Williston are four of the most prominent philosophers who have written on the role that virtue plays in an age of climate change. None of them, however, consider how valuable virtue can be in serving preventative ends. Climate change is, in part, a moral failure and part of the task of mitigating climate change should be acknowledging this failure and working to make sure we do not commit the same mistakes of the past. In this thesis, I argue for the cultivation of a virtue that I call “holism” that I believe can help humanity achieve this end. In chapter one, I discuss the arguments of the aforementioned philosophers and identify how their views of virtue in the Anthropocene are not identical to my own. In chapter two, I spell out the virtue of holism and argue for how it can help humanity work towards not allowing another climate catastrophe to happen once the present crisis is mitigated. Finally, in chapter three, I consider possible objections to the claim that cultivating the virtues is necessary for adequately remedying climate change.

Committee:

Scott Carson (Advisor); James Petrik (Committee Member); Christoph Hanisch (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Climate Change; Environmental Education; Environmental Management; Environmental Philosophy; Environmental Studies; Epistemology; Ethics; Philosophy

Keywords:

Virtue; Climate Change; Anthropocene; Holism; Sustainability; Dale Jamieson; Stephen Gardiner; Allen Thompson; Byron Williston; Green Virtues; Green; Nature

Wallace, Kyle SAn Exploratory Study of Learning Journeys for Makers in the Fields of Art, Craft and Design: An Investigation of the Blurred Boundaries between Art, Craft, and Design
Master of Fine Arts, The Ohio State University, 2016, Industrial, Interior Visual Communication Design
In this exploratory study, research was conducted on the learning journeys of makers in the fields of art, craft and design. The investigation was conducted to explore new ways of informing hands-on learning for makers, as well as parents and educators of makers. The primary research revealed insights about the makers' positions within the blurred boundaries of art, craft and design, how these makers approach creativity and how their learning activities fit within informal, non-formal and formal learning approaches. This study does not attempt to reinforce or redefine the boundaries between art, craft and design. Rather, this study suggests that practitioners and students want to explore the space between art, craft and design even though many academic institutions often attempt to reinforce boundaries between the three fields. The findings in this study were rich in details and these were used to create a framework for makers to begin or continue advancing their skills and knowledge in hands-on learning. The information provided could be used to bridge formal learning activities with informal and non-formal learning activities. Bridging these types of learning activities could better position future makers to become the producers of innovative ideas for our future economy. It is important to note that the investigator is also a maker. His background includes vocational education in cabinetmaking and millwork, and university education at a one-year exchange program in Germany and a BFA with a concentration in Industrial Design. His professional career includes fabrication and managerial experiences from a variety of production workshops at multiple locations across the United States and abroad, in countries such as England and Australia.

Committee:

Elizabeth B.-N. Sanders, Ph.D., (Advisor); Peter Chan, Ph.D., (Committee Member); David Staley, Ph.D., (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Adult Education; Art Education; Curricula; Design; Education; Epistemology; Fine Arts; Higher Education; Industrial Arts Education; Pedagogy; Teacher Education; Teaching; Vocational Education

Keywords:

Exploratory Study; User-Centered; Maker; Blurred Boundaries; Art; Craft; Design; Learning Journey

Ziegler, Nathan E.English Language Learners’ Epistemic Beliefs about Vocabulary Knowledge
Doctor of Philosophy, University of Toledo, 2014, Foundations of Education: Educational Psychology
There is a growing body of work that examines the epistemic beliefs of learners and the role those beliefs play in the development of their critical thinking and other cognitive processes (Hofer, 2001). This study examines the epistemic beliefs of English language learners, a population of learners that is relatively understudied on the topic of personal epistemology. More specifically, this qualitative study explores ELLs’ dimensional and developmental epistemic beliefs about vocabulary knowledge in English. First-year international undergraduate students enrolled in remedial ESL writing courses were given a series of speaking and writing placement tests in an Intensive ESL program at a Mid-western university. Responses to writing prompts and interviews were analyzed for this study from an epistemological lens to determine the espoused epistemic beliefs of English language learners. Results suggested that many ELLs espoused advanced epistemic beliefs (i.e., evaluativism) about vocabulary knowledge most of the time. There was a general disparity found, however, with ELLs’ epistemic beliefs about the source and justification of English vocabulary knowledge. That is, there was a tendency for ELLs to espouse less sophisticated epistemic beliefs (i.e., absolutism) about source and justification of vocabulary knowledge. This implies that participants’ beliefs about these dimensions of knowledge and knowing might be hindering the emergence of more sophisticated epistemic beliefs in the domain of English language learning. Additional implications suggest that ESL curriculum needs to focus on developing ELLs’ use of the appropriate cognitive strategies (i.e., critical thinking) to determine the most accurate sources of vocabulary knowledge in specified communicative contexts.

Committee:

Florian Feucht, Dr. (Committee Chair); Lisa Pescara-Kovach, Dr. (Committee Member); Thomas Dunn, Dr. (Committee Member); Susanna Hapgood, Dr. (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Educational Psychology; English As A Second Language; Epistemology

Keywords:

English as a Second Language; English Language Learners; ESL Education; Vocabulary Learning; Second Language Instruction; Personal Epistemology; Epistemic Development; Epistemic Beliefs; Educational Psychology

Adams, Laural L.Theorizing Mental Models in Disciplinary Writing Ecologies through Scholarship, Talk-Aloud Protocols, and Semi-Structured Interviews
Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.), Bowling Green State University, 2014, English (Rhetoric and Writing) PhD
This project explores how disciplinary habits of mind are circulated through forms of representation to instantiate English Studies disciplines, institutions which then shape scholars' practices for producing knowledge. Using a critical discourse analysis on scholarship, semi-structured interviews, and a talk-aloud protocol, I find that scholars' thinking and writing rely heavily on mental models. Scholars employ small-scale working representations of dynamic systems to help them reason through disciplinary problem spaces, including research questions and composing issues. Unlike the sciences, English Studies fields have not fully exploited mental models in research and teaching; nor have they been considered fully in writing studies' research on cognition and writing. In order to understand the role of mental models in writing and disciplinarity, I employ ecology theory to link the representational nature of mind to external media. I find that as scholars write, they produce complex mental models of disciplinary content that are comprised of objects of study, relationality between these objects, and discipline-specific forms of dynamism applied to "run" the models. Mental models are multimodal compositions that employ representational modalities afforded by "mind," such as force, image, and affect; their design reveals scholars' tacit values and assumptions. My research suggests that reflecting on mental models can enable scholars to extend their reasoning and critically evaluate their assumptions. During writing and revision, scholars model a generic reader's mind "unfolding" as it encounters the writing in order to anticipate eventual readers' "situation models." Scholars also model hypothetical exchanges with familiars with whom they have previously written in order to predict critiques and feedback. Mental models have a significant role in enculturating new members and constructing and maintaining disciplinarity. I propose that a facility with mental models is a significant component of reasoning-based "literacies" and suggest ways that scholars and teachers can make deliberate use of mental models in scholarship and in teaching writing. I describe the significance of mental models in knowing and composing in new media contexts with multimodal affordances that compare and contrast to those of the mind. I also suggest additional methods for analyzing and collecting data on mental models and writing.

Committee:

Lee Nickoson, Dr. (Committee Chair); Kristine L. Blair, Dr. (Committee Member); Jorge Chavez, Dr. (Committee Member); Sue Carter Wood, Dr. (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Cognitive Psychology; Communication; Composition; Ecology; Educational Theory; Epistemology; Higher Education; Language; Literacy; Multimedia Communications; Organizational Behavior; Rhetoric; Social Research; Teacher Education; Technology

Keywords:

Mental Models; Writing Studies; Ecology and Complexity Theory; Disciplinarity; Disciplinary Writing Ecologies; Cognition and Writing; Social Cognition; Scholarship; Multimodal Composing; English Studies; Critical Discourse Analysis; Talk-aloud Protocol

Roane, Nancy LeeMisreading the River: Heraclitean Hope in Postmodern Texts
BA, Oberlin College, 2015, Comparative Literature
Ancient Greek philosopher Heraclitus, known for his theory of "constant flux," may be one of the most misunderstood and misquoted thinkers of Western philosophy. The way that the protagonist of Julio Cortazar’s Rayuela misreads Heraclitus serves as one example of this phenomenon wherein poorly-conceived postmodern inquiries that seek to weaken the idea of a Truth lead to a nihilistic apathy. Horacio Oliveira misunderstands Heraclitus’ doctrine of constant flux and uses this misreading to “logically” justify his sexist and elitist behavior towards others. This phenomenon crops up again in Samuel Beckett’s absurdist play Fin de Partie through Hamm, a patriarch that no longer sees any point in trying because the world as he knows it is disintegrating. We can use Heraclitus as a central theoretical point for parsing through what exactly goes wrong with the ethical decisions of these characters. Carole Maso’s AVA serves as a counterexample to Rayuela and Fin de Partie, for the novel revolves around similar theoretical questions but provides us with a more properly “Heraclitean” approach for how to confront a world without fixed meaning. Studying these failures and successes supply us with examples of how Postmodern thought can be used for harm or for good. A Heraclitean reading of these texts shows us how, properly understood, Postmodernism moves not only towards deconstructing structuralized systems of violence and marginalization, but also towards building something out of the rubble.

Committee:

Claire Solomon (Advisor); Jed Deppman (Committee Chair); Benjamin Lee (Committee Member)

Subjects:

American Literature; Ancient Languages; Classical Studies; Comparative; Comparative Literature; Epistemology; Ethics; European Studies; Gender Studies; Latin American Literature; Latin American Studies; Literature; Metaphysics; Modern Literature; Philosophy; Womens Studies

Keywords:

Heraclitus;Julio Cortazar;Cortazar;Rayuela;Hopscotch;Samuel Beckett;Beckett;Fin de Partie;Endgame;Carole Maso;Maso;AVA;Postmodernism;Ancient Greek philosophy;Poststructuralism; Deconstruction; Cixous;Derrida;Deleuze;Kahn; TM Robinson

Jones, Samantha M.Sacred Forests and the Social Dimensions of Conservation in the North Pare Mountains of Tanzania
Master of Science (MS), Ohio University, 2013, Geography (Arts and Sciences)
Sacred forests are the product of intersecting ecology, culture, and society. In some of the most densely settled elevations of Tanzania’s North Pare Mountains, sacred forests preserve all that remains of native forest vegetation. Their continued protection appears uncertain however, as acculturation has led some caretakers to abandon traditional stewardship. The people of Mangio and Vuchama, two North Pare highland villages, are still maintaining sacred forests. This research examines the conservation value and potential fate of those forests. During summer 2012 selected forests were inventoried to determine forest structure and composition and qualitative research activities investigated age-stratified patterns of the knowledge, beliefs, and practices associated with forests. Sacred forests were found to have greater density and species richness than the village forest. Changing customs have influenced these communities and consequently the landscape, yet the recognized ecological value of sacred forests secures their continued local protection, reinforced by formal government.

Committee:

Elizabeth Edna Wangui, PhD (Advisor); Thomas Smucker, PhD (Committee Member); James M. Dyer, PhD (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Environmental Management; Epistemology; Forestry

Keywords:

sacred forests; local ecological knowledge; forest diversity; community-based conservation; social-ecological system

Wickstrom, Craig MA Post-Critical Science of Administration: Toward a Society of Explorers
Doctor of Philosophy in Urban Studies and Public Affairs, Cleveland State University, 2017, Maxine Goodman Levin College of Urban Affairs
What is meant by "science" and whether it is an appropriate model for public administration has been a subject of debate since Woodrow Wilson called for a science of administration in 1887. This dissertation introduces another voice into that debate, the voice of a world-renowned physical chemist named Michael Polanyi. Polanyi's sharp criticism of positivism reinforces the arguments of those questioning the legitimacy of an administrative science, but instead of rejecting it, he constructed an alternative definition of science that recognizes the indeterminacy of reality, the personal nature of knowledge, and the centrality of "the logic of tacit knowing." Because all knowledge is tacit or rooted in tacit knowing, we can know more than we can tell, and tacit knowing becomes evident in the dynamic order of polycentric entities and in their reliance on tradition and the person, constrained by community, and morally responsible for discovery and practice.

Committee:

Michael Spicer, Ph.D. (Committee Chair); Helen Liggett, Ph.D. (Committee Member); Walter Gulick, Ph.D. (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Epistemology; Philosophy of Science; Public Administration

Keywords:

Michael Polanyi post-critical science public administration tacit knowing personal knowledge intuition faith heuristic meaning discovery responsible practice community tradition dynamic spontaneous order public liberty free society indeterminate reality

Diaz Sierra, Sergio PabloThe Role of Coherence in the Development of Ideologies: A Case Study of Conservative Thought on Immigration from 1995 to 2000
Doctor of Philosophy, The Ohio State University, 2017, Political Science
How are ideologies created and how do they develop? Noel points to ideological elites and public intellectuals as responsible for the development of ideologies. Through deliberation and debate with each other, they help define, clarify, and explain what their ideological allies should believe and why. However, what precisely happens as they engage in this process remains a mystery. In this dissertation, I propose a resolution to this mystery by suggesting that the development of ideologies is one of a persistent drive to improve coherence. Coherence is a cognitive property; it is the degree to which elements in belief systems make sense together (Thagard 2000). Through coherence, we make sense of competing explanations of the world. In saying that ideologies develop as their coherence improves, I place ideology at the center of how individuals interact with the political world. Contrary to the claims of those who suggest ideological language serves as little more than marketing or rationalization for power coalitions of elite interests(e.g., Aldrich1995, Converse1964, K.BawnZaller2012, Zaller1992), I argue that ideology is central to how we as people perceive and interact with politics. Ideological beliefs cannot be easily abandoned or revised without changes to the underlying belief systems of their adopters. These beliefs are sincerely held, and their presence helps people navigate the why's and how's of politics. Using data from conservative political magazines published between 1995 and 2000, I provide evidence that conservative thought on immigration developed through a process of coherence improvement. Conservatives adopted a threat narrative that portrayed immigrants as dangerous to themselves and American culture and as undeserving burdens to the welfare state. These feelings, combined with preexisting positions against welfare spending and policies designed to promote racial diversity, lead conservatives, and consequently the Republican Party, to adopt increasingly restrictive positions on immigration. These restrictionist positions and the arguments that underlie them became more coherent over time, overcoming objections from libertarians and business conservatives who had more positive views about the benefits of immigration. The findings in this dissertation are a step forward for the study of ideology. First, this dissertation provides a test of the theory that ideological constraint arises out of the elite discourse. While Noel (2014) proposes this idea he never tests it directly. Instead, he limits himself to providing evidence that constraint arises in the media before it arises in Congress. While such evidence is consistent with the ideology-as-constraint, it also leaves open other possibilities, including that parties try out arguments in the media before importing them to Congress. This dissertation tests the primary mechanism: creative synthesis. I show that deliberation and discussion lead to ideological constraint by pushing public intellectuals to improve the coherence of their beliefs. Second, in examining ideology as sincerely-held belief systems, I challenge theorists like Aldrich (1995), who view ideology as a tool to market and manipulate a political coalition. Contrary to these theorists, I argue that ideologies reflect the worldviews of elites and, as such, they constrain elites' actions. Evidence of such constraint has implications for our understanding of politics. If belief systems constrain elites, their ability to deviate from previously stated positions should be less than expected under other theories(Bawn et al., 2012). Ideological change, I argue, should reflect not just a shift in strategic considerations (a way to get more votes, for example), but a change in underlying beliefs. If a change in ideology requires belief revision, this means that coherent ideologies are sticky and likely to persist even after they become a political liability.

Committee:

William Minozzi, Ph.D. (Advisor); Jack Wright, Ph.D. (Committee Co-Chair); Gregory Caldeira, Ph.D. (Committee Member); Michael Neblo, Ph.D. (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Epistemology; Hispanic Americans; Philosophy; Political Science; Rhetoric; Social Research

Keywords:

Ideology; Immigration; Conservativism; Coherence

Sparks, JacobInference and Justification in Ethics
Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.), Bowling Green State University, 2018, Philosophy, Applied
We all say that certain moral views – true or false, agreed to or not – are reasonable, rational or justified. When we say this, we mean, roughly, that the agent who has come to these views has answered her ethical questions in a responsible way and that her beliefs are defensible from her own perspective. Whether or not these beliefs turn out true, they have some epistemic merit. This work is an investigation into that notion of epistemic merit. It asks, "What makes a moral belief justified?"

Committee:

Christian Coons (Advisor); Michael Weber (Committee Member); Michael Bradie (Committee Member); Daniel Fasko (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Epistemology; Ethics; Philosophy

Keywords:

ethics; metaethics; epistemology; moral epistemology; intuition; perception; inference

Montgomery, Richard ThomasAn Investigation of High School Teachers’ Epistemic Beliefs in an Urban District
Doctor of Education, University of Toledo, 2014, Educational Administration and Supervision
Investigations in the field of teacher epistemology have been informative in that they have provided a framework for identifying which epistemic beliefs are associated with student- and teacher centered instruction (Schraw & Olafson, 2002) and which beliefs prevent teachers from adopting student centered instructional practices (Gill, Ashton, & Algina, 2004). Understanding teachers’ epistemic beliefs is an important asset to school districts because it provides insight on which teachers may require additional intervention to adopt new teaching practices. However, few studies have examined the epistemic beliefs of high school teachers. There were three objectives of this investigation: (1) to identify the proportions of high school teachers in one urban district whose epistemic beliefs reflect resistance to change teaching practices (Gill et al., 2004; Patrick & Pintrich, 2010) versus those with beliefs amenable to adopting new practices (Feucht, 2010); (2) to identify the proportion of teachers with teacher- and student centered epistemic beliefs by area of certification, and (3) to establish whether relationships exist between high school teachers’ epistemic beliefs and selected demographic variables. Findings showed that 57.9% of teachers surveyed held epistemic beliefs that reflect a student centered orientation. Few relationships were found between high school teachers’ epistemic beliefs and selected demographic factors. Implications for teacher epistemology research and school district leaders were discussed.

Committee:

Nancy Staub (Committee Chair); Dale Snauwaert (Committee Member); Mary Ellen Edwards (Committee Member); Shanda Gore (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Education; Education Philosophy; Education Policy; Educational Evaluation; Educational Leadership; Educational Psychology; Educational Theory; Epistemology; Pedagogy; Secondary Education; Teacher Education; Teaching

Keywords:

Secondary Teachers, High School Teachers, Epistemic Beliefs, Urban Schools, Teacher Learning, William Perry, Teacher Epistemology, Schraw and Olafson, Domain Specific Beliefs, Domain General Beliefs, Teaching, Educational Policy

Day, Allyson LThe Ability Contract The Ideological, Affective, and Material Negotiations of Women Living with HIV
Doctor of Philosophy, The Ohio State University, 2014, Womens Studies
This dissertation project theorizes the ability contract as a means for understanding the experience of women living with HIV in the United States. I understand the ability contract as the triad of labor-utility-predictability that is central to the construction of the liberal citizen-subject, extending the work of John Locke, Carol Pateman, Charles Mills and Shannon Winnubst. The theory of this project is rooted in my original field research; during the 2012-2013 academic year, I spent six months facilitating a reading group for women living with HIV. Together, we read popular memoirs written by women with what I have termed invisible episodic illness, such as lupus, early stage m.s., chronic depression and HIV. Participants in the reading group used these books as a catalyst for discussing their daily negotiations of labor, family and the medical industrial complex in relation to disability identity. I also conducted one-on-one preliminary and follow-up interviews. What I found was that my research participants all resisted a disability identification, despite many of them accessing disability resources. They also all closely connected their identity not to their current employment conditions, but to their prediction of how they will be able to work in the future. This prediction of becoming a wage-earner was the primary reason for their dis/identification with disability. What explains this close connection of disability with future labor? And what is the relationship between labor and disability at the intersection of gender, race, class, and (medical) citizenship? In order to address these questions, I developed a three-tier reading group research method; in my dissertation, I analyze life narratives of women living with HIV, both the narratives of the women in my group and published narratives; I also analyze the reading group reception to those life narratives; finally, I re-read social contract theory alongside American multiracial feminisms, disability theory, autobiographical theory, and affect theory to understand the Ability Contract as affective, material and ideological; this interpretation leads me to an analysis of narrative medicine, where I argue against the fetishization of narrative within the medical industrial complex.

Committee:

Wendy Smooth, PhD (Committee Co-Chair); Brenda Brueggemann, PhD (Committee Co-Chair); Shannon Winnubst, PhD (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Epistemology; Ethnic Studies; Gender Studies; Health; Womens Studies

Keywords:

disability theory; feminism; HIV; medical industrial complex; narrative medicine; social contract theory; black feminist thought; critical race theory; reading group methodology;

Aerie, Joshua MA Narrative Epistemology of Sacred Frame Constructedness and Deconstruction: Exploratory Analyses of Ways of Knowing Sacred Interpretation and Understanding Through Context, Symbol/Concept, and Role
BA, Oberlin College, 2000, Anthropology
The purpose of this Anthropology Honors Thesis is to understand sacred construction through narrative epistemology. That is, with the help of an analytical model of framework, frame, and strip, I analyze narratives regarding incidents of disruption and incongruity within the sacred framework as a way of knowing the sacred as a social realm, constructed as dialectically different from the domain of "conventional" social cognition. Specifically, I will examine how the stories embody ideas about how the sacred framework constructs fragile interpretive frames susceptible to incidents which challenge its structural rigidity and inflexibility. These stories expose the constructedness of the sacred.

Committee:

Ronald Casson (Advisor); Jack Glazier (Advisor); Phyllis Gorfain (Advisor)

Subjects:

Epistemology; Sociology

Keywords:

epistemology;narrative;sacred;

Bontrager, Nicholas A.The Conflation of Image Making and Image Fixation in Six Acts
Master of Fine Arts, The Ohio State University, 2011, Art
Questioning the disjunction which occurs between the real and virtual structure of the moving image, this selection of works and concepts explores the dissection of time and exploitation of structural artifacts. Expanding upon the disjunction which occurs, the subsequent writing investigates the conflation of image making and image fixation which is ever-present within my studio practice. Looking at the history of film and television as a visual and narrative structure, this work will survey the methods and techniques in which a conversational gap can be actualized and given a physical form.

Committee:

Kenneth Rinaldo (Committee Chair); Amy Youngs (Committee Member); Laura Lisbon (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Art Criticism; Design; Epistemology; Film Studies; Fine Arts; Motion Pictures; Museums; Performing Arts; Robotics; Robots; Technology

Keywords:

new media; film studies; survival; epistemology; narrative structure; time travel; image conflation; generative imagery

Ruiz , Andres C. Evolutionary Debunking Arguments and Their Challenges to Human Knowledge
Master of Arts (MA), Ohio University, 2013, Philosophy (Arts and Sciences)
I critically examine and evaluate the cogency of four kinds of evolutionary debunking arguments in the literature. Specifically, I focus on Alvin Plantinga’s Evolutionary Argument Against Naturalism, an argument aimed at establishing the conclusion that naturalism and evolution lead to an epistemic defeater that renders the conjoined belief in both irrational; Michael Ruse’s Evolutionary Ethics, aimed at establishing that an evolutionary genealogy of our moral sentiments proves morality to be an illusion; Sharon Street’s Darwinian Dilemma Against Realist Theories of Value, which aims to establish the implausibility of natural selection having produced cognitive faculties that accurately track the sort of moral facts posited by moral realists; and Richard Joyce’s Evolutionary Debunking of Morality, an argument to show that our moral judgments are unjustified and we ought to therefore adopt moral agnosticism. I argue that Alvin Plantinga fails to prove that the conjunction of naturalism and evolution lead to radical skepticism. Second, I argue that Michael Ruse draws the wrong conclusions from his evolutionary genealogy of morals and as a consequence fails to give a compelling argument against moral realism. By contrast, I defend Richard Joyce's and Sharon Street's arguments against various criticisms and conclude that they present a compelling epistemic challenge to justifications for moral realism.

Committee:

James Petrik (Advisor); John Bender (Committee Member); Alfred Lent (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Epistemology; Ethics; Philosophy

Keywords:

evolutionary debunking arguments; moral epistemology; metaethics; moral realism; moral constructivism;

Stonestreet, John RyanA Confession of Miraculous Mythological Epistemology for Health Communication
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Ohio University, 2014, Individual Interdisciplinary Program
This dissertation examines health communication surrounding patient and family hopes for miraculous divine intervention in response to physician predictions of medical futility. The study presents an auto-ethnographic account of the author's personal experience of this clinical context as a hospital chaplain. The context is then re-framed from a particular chaplain's experience to an examination of similar contexts surfacing in the prognosis-related communication between physicians, patients, and families, as revealed in the literature. The combination of first-person experience and third-person analysis of the same problem takes seriously the rationality of both immediately given reality and the work of thinking. At stake in any serious consideration of what all may be at play in this context are significant issues outside of the health communication domain, such as religion, myth, and epistemology. As such, the methodology is an interdisciplinary theoretical analysis of a practical problem in health communication. The theories used for such an analysis are theology, myth theory, and health communication theory. Eastern Orthodox theology forms the underlying theoretical substratum through which the immediate chaplaincy experience is filtered. Myth theory forms the next theoretical layer, examining such issues as the relationship between myth, symbol, and miracle, and the impact of these domains on the evolution of both art and science for a historical contextualization and philosophical conceptualization of the paradigms colliding in the health communication context. Health communication theory forms the final theoretical layer. Drawing upon and building from preceding layers of theoretical analysis, problematic integration theory, hope theory, and narrative medicine theory combine to illumine the problem of interest and suggest a way forward. Teasing out the interdisciplinary aspects of the problem by interweaving multiple levels of theoretical analysis not only sheds light on this particular context, but may also suggest new possibilities for a wider range of health communication encounters at all stages of disease trajectory.

Committee:

Vladimir Marchenkov (Advisor); Austin Babrow (Committee Member); Karen Deardorff (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Communication; Epistemology; Ethics; Health Care; Theology

Keywords:

end-of-life, mythological epistemology, health communication, medical futility, theology, health care, miracles, ethics, spiritual intervention, postmodern, intercessory prayer

Pistorova, Stacey L.Project Study Group: A Narrative Inquiry into how Individual Epistemological Beliefs and Teaching Practices are affected by Participation in a Study Group Implementing the Project Approach
Doctor of Philosophy, University of Toledo, 2013, Curriculum and Instruction: Early Childhood Education
Narrative analysis opens up a pedagogical research space to investigate the questions of what do we teach and how, illuminating a deeper understanding of the complexity of embedding inquiry based, constructivist practices into the early childhood classroom. The following research represents a form of inquiry that exposes the tensions that emerged out of the context of a specific professional study group’s engagement in the study of the Project Approach between personal epistemological beliefs, classroom practices and the professional field of early childhood education. The narratives of four teachers tell the stories of early childhood educators seeking to implement projects into their classrooms and to open up a dialogue that invites us to take a deeper look at the findings of this research that challenge and uncover the following narrative threads: the role of experience in teachers’ ability to connect the theory of inquiry-based practices with implementation; the invitation to challenge teacher education and professional development models that disseminate content and information with the expectation that methods are assimilated into teachers’ epistemological perspectives and practices; and the need for additional, qualitative methods that expose the complexity of teachers’ lives and calls to view teachers holistically and as learners who approach teaching and learning from multiple perspectives. The stories found within this research are far from quantifiable or generalizable, but provide a new lens on project-based work and provide insight into the possibility and capacity for projects within the current field of early childhood educators. The challenge of this research is to pay close attention to the experiences of educators in the field and take the time to observe, document and tell their stories. We need to stop the efficiency model of labeling and engage in more narrative inquiry to gain a deeper understanding that can inform our practices and build the capacity for project-based, constructivist practices. When we stop isolating teachers and begin to investigate more deeply the systems within which they work then we open up a space that moves beyond prescribing teachers and their practices. This shift begins to describe the reality of teaching and learning and working within a system that often counters constructivist approaches to education and pushes the limits of pre-determined, mainstream paradigms in teacher education, educational practices and educational research. We must continue to challenge norms as the means of living in the tension and constructing new alternatives to pedagogical practices.

Committee:

Ruslan Slutsky, Ph.D. (Advisor); Sylvia Chard, Ph.D. (Committee Member); Susanna Hapgood, Ph.D. (Committee Member); Lynne Hamer, Ph.D. (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Early Childhood Education; Education; Epistemology; Teacher Education; Teaching

Keywords:

inquiry-based practices; narrative inquiry; epistemology; personal, practical knowledge; study group

Vurdelja, IvaHow Leaders Think: Measuring Cognitive Complexity in Leading Organizational Change
Ph.D., Antioch University, 2011, Leadership and Change
The ability to lead complex organizational change is considered the most difficult leadership responsibility. Habitual linear thinking based on sequential procedural decision making is insufficient when responding to ambiguous and unpredictable challenges and interpreting systemic variables in the context of unforeseen problems, risks, and invisible interrelationships. The purpose of this exploratory multiple case study was to expand our understanding of the structure of the thinking employed by executive leaders as initiators and enablers of complex, large-scale organizational change. The researcher integrated knowledge of adult cognitive development and organizational leadership to examine the higher forms of reasoning abilities required for dealing with the complex and nonlinear nature of change. By using Laske‘s (2009) dialectical thought form (DTF) framework, the researcher explored the existence of dialectical thinking through structural analysis of interviews with 10 senior leaders who successfully transformed their respective organizations. Specifically, the study explored: (1) To what degree do the sponsors of organizational change engage in dialectical thinking in their work? (2) Is complexity of thinking related to complexity of sponsorship roles? (3) What phase of cognitive development must sponsors of transformational change attain to become effective change agents? (4) Does a higher level of dialectical thinking lead to more effective sponsorship of transformational, complex change? The results revealed that all 10 effective leaders were fully developed dialectical thinkers and that each one had a unique pattern of dialectical thinking. Data illustrated how metasystemic thinkers, despite their surface similarities, have deep epistemological differences that indicate profoundly different areas of strength and developmental needs. The potential application of the DTF framework as a developmental tool for expanding cognitive capabilities to deal with complex change is addressed and explored. The study opens an array of opportunities for another, richer way of looking at adult development. The electronic version of this dissertation is available in the open-access OhioLink ETD Center, www.ohiolink.edu/etd.

Committee:

Jon Wergin, PhD (Committee Chair); Laurien Alexandre, PhD (Committee Member); Carol Baron, PhD (Committee Member); Daryl Conner, MA (Committee Member); Linda Hoopes, PhD (Committee Member); Sara Nora Ross, PhD (Other)

Subjects:

Business Administration; Business Education; Cognitive Psychology; Developmental Psychology; Epistemology; Management

Keywords:

multiple case study; senior executives; complexity; CEOs; change leaders; adult cognitive development; change sponsorship; leading change; dialectical thinking; metasystemic thinking

Nicholas, John B.Investigating Engineering Educators' Views on the Use of Educational Technology: A Q Methodology Study
Doctor of Philosophy, University of Akron, 2011, Secondary Education
The purpose of this study is to investigate the views of engineering/engineering technology (E-ET) educators on the use of educational technology in E-ET courses. In this study, views of the use of educational technology were investigated using Q Methodology. William Stephenson developed Q Methodology as a means of measuring subjectivity (Brown 1980, 1993; McKeown & Thomas, 1988). Students' views on the use of educational technology in science and engineering technology courses have been investigated using Q Methodology (Kraft 2008; Nicholas, 2009, 2010a, 2010b) but very little research has been done on the views of E-ET educators' views on the subject. The participants of this study were from a mid-sized Midwestern university that houses both engineering and/or engineering technology programs. This study aimed to elicit the views of E-ET educators on the use of educational technology in E-ET courses. A pilot study was conducted during the spring 2010 semester on the use of classroom technology in E-ET coursed by the researcher. This study replicated and improved upon the pilot study based on the results of and the post-sort interviews conducted at the conclusion of the pilot study to determine if these three factors or views will replicate and/or new factors or views emerge. The study resulted in three factors or views on the use of classroom technology in E-ET courses that were based in the pedagogy of the participants. These findings should assist those interested in discovering and implementing the best use of educational technology in E-ET education.

Committee:

Susan Ramlo, Dr. (Committee Co-Chair); Lynne Pachnowski, Dr. (Committee Co-Chair); Cheryl Ward, Dr. (Committee Member); I-Chun Tsai, Dr. (Committee Member); D.Dane Quinn, Dr. (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Education; Educational Technology; Educational Theory; Engineering; Epistemology; Pedagogy

Keywords:

Q Methodology; Engineering Education; Engineering Technology Education; Classroom Technology; Educational Technology; Instructional Technology

Williams, Tiffany JWild and Well: An Autobiographical Manifesto for the Love of Black Girls
Doctor of Philosophy, Miami University, 2018, Educational Leadership
Curriculum matters! In the process of teaching and learning, there is a seductive dance going on. Curriculum in social, political, and cultural space can make or break, conform and transform the individual into subject or object. To this end, an examination of such curricula is crucial to the “complicated conversations” (Pinar, 2012) in which we endeavor to engage. This autobiographical study examines critical educational moments in schooling and non-schooling contexts. Specifically, I conceptualize the tensions between planned and lived curricula and use Black Feminist Theory as a way to intervene and disrupt curricular patterns and practices. Additionally, I seek to understand the ways in which curricula sought to conform and deform, as well as inform and transform me. In this way, I reimagine ways of teaching and learning as spiritual and theoretical practices toward justice (Baszile, 2017; Dillard, 2012). Using Critical race feminist currere (Baszile, 2017), a kind of currere, allows for the shift to curriculum as understanding for people of color, Black women and girls in particular. The critical moments around schooling, education, and the curriculum brings to bear the historical relationships between Carter G. Woodson’s notion of miseducation, the crisis of schooling and non-schooling for Black girls and Women, and how Endarkened/Black Feminist ways of knowing disrupt and intervene in the discussion of knowledge creation and production. The primary research question that guides this study is: How does an educator educate in the midst of her own miseducation? The study is significant for educators, especially teachers, as a model to examine their own relationships with education and explore their own currerian journeys as pathways to understanding, empathy, and teacher compassion.

Committee:

Denise Taliaferro Baszile (Advisor)

Subjects:

Curricula; Educational Leadership; Epistemology; Gender Studies; Higher Education; Spirituality; Teacher Education

Keywords:

Curriculum; Curriculum Theory; Black Feminisms; currere; storytelling

Val, PetranBINOCULAR DEPTH PERCEPTION, PROBABILITY, FUZZY LOGIC, AND CONTINUOUS QUANTIFICATION OF UNIQUENESS
Master of Sciences (Engineering), Case Western Reserve University, 2018, EECS - Computer Engineering
This thesis proposes a new algorithm for quantifying the extent to which any element of any set is unusual in that set. The algorithm operates by estimating strictly increasing transformations of experimentally measurable frequencies of occurrence. These transformations represent fuzzy set membership functions that can be used to decide which of any two elements of the set can more often be recognized when surrounded by the other elements, but not how often, by any algorithm that uses arbitrary procedures to measure and compare the elements of the set, and hypothesizes that measurements which most resemble each other are most likely to have been obtained by measuring the same entity. The relationship between Fuzzy Logic and Probability is explored, and the usefulness of the algorithm is experimentally evaluated by applying it to the practical task of binocular depth perception.

Committee:

Francis Merat, Ph.D. P.E. (Committee Chair); Lewicki Michael, Ph.D. (Committee Member); Loparo Kenneth, Ph.D. (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Artificial Intelligence; Computer Engineering; Computer Science; Engineering; Epistemology; Mathematics; Philosophy; Statistics

Keywords:

fuzzy logic;fuzzy set;probability;humphreys paradox;reference class problem;bayesian; frequentist;propensity;uniqueness quantification;distinctiveness;stereo vision;epipolar constraint; depth perception;stereopsis;retina

Ross, Ryan D.In Defense of Radical Empiricism
Master of Arts (MA), Ohio University, 2015, Philosophy (Arts and Sciences)
Laurence BonJour defends a moderate version of rationalism against rivaling empiricist epistemologies. His moderate rationalism maintains that some beliefs are justified a priori in a way that does not reduce to mere analyticity, but he tempers this strong claim by saying that such justification is both fallible and empirically defeasible. With the aim of ruling out radical empiricism (the form of empiricism that repudiates the a priori), BonJour puts forth what he calls the “master argument.” According to this argument, the resources available to radical empiricists are too slender to allow for justified empirical beliefs that go beyond what is immediately available to sense-perception, e.g., what we see, hear, and taste. If so, then radical empiricists are committed to a severe form of skepticism, one in which it is impossible to have justified beliefs about the distant past, the future, unobserved aspects of the present, etc. Worse, radical empiricists, who pride themselves on their scientific worldview, would be unable to account for justified beliefs about the abstract, theoretical claims of science itself! Clearly, the master argument is intended to hit the radical empiricist where it hurts. Fortunately for the radical empiricist, however, it is possible to escape BonJour’s would be deathblow. One way to respond to BonJour is to adopt a holistic approach to justification. Another way is to reject a crucial assumption that BonJour makes about the nature of inferential justification. Either response allows radical empiricists to prevent their skepticism about the a priori from generalizing into a form of radical skepticism in which nothing is known at all.

Committee:

John Bender, Ph.D. (Advisor)

Subjects:

Epistemology

Keywords:

Radical Empiricism; Rationalism; BonJour; Quine; Coherentist Radical Empiricism

Koh, Bee KimComing into Intelligibility: Decolonizing Singapore Art, Practice and Curriculum in Post-colonial Globalization
Doctor of Philosophy, The Ohio State University, 2014, Art Education
This study examines how select aspects of art and practice are apprehended in Singapore, in terms of how they come into being, how they are known, lived and responded to. Situated within the broader context of postcolonial globalization, the study considers how art and practice can be understood within situated conditions in Singapore as a means towards decolonizing the pre-constitution of subjectivity of Singapore art in the curriculum. This qualitative research uses grounded theory, Adele Clark's situational analysis (2005) and case study to examine the interviews and works of six art/design practitioners. The work draws on concepts from Karen Barad's theory on the materialization of entities in human and non-human actions and relations (2007), Michel Foucault's grid of intelligibility (1971; 1978), and Appadurai's disjuncture and difference in the global cultural economy (1990). Using these concepts, the study considers how subjectivities are made intelligible or constituted within physical-discursive conditions in phenomena. The research investigates how practitioners come to know aspects of art and practice; how they experience, enact, and act against pre-existing subjectivities embedded in structures of practice; and how they respond to these structures in and through their work. The study examines how art/design practitioners traverse and transgress pre-existing subjectivities, and reconfigured these dynamically through splicing strategies in their ongoing becoming in the global cultural economy.

Committee:

Christine Ballengee-Morris, Dr (Committee Co-Chair); Deborah Smith-Shank, Dr (Committee Co-Chair); Sydney Walker, Dr (Committee Member); Amy Shuman, Dr (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Art Education; Curriculum Development; Education; Education Philosophy; Education Policy; Educational Tests and Measurements; Epistemology; Ethics

Keywords:

Decolonizing; Postcolonial Curriculum Design; Postcolonial Studies; Art Practice; Art Pedagogy; Curriculum Studies; Singapore; Art Curriculum; Postcolonial Identity; Postcolonial Subjectivity; Global Cultural Economy; Karen Barad; ethico-onto-epistemology

Wilms, Carl EHow Elementary School Teachers Teach Science: Using Nature of Science to Understand Elementary Teachers's Science Identities and Teaching Practices - A Case Study
Doctor of Philosophy, Miami University, 2014, Educational Leadership
Politicians and educators frequently refer to the lack of science being taught in public schools. President Obama has voiced concerns about employers’ economic interests not being served through public school’s science education. An understanding of science is also required in order to evaluate political and social justice issues. This project identifies aspects of the epistemological understandings of science known as Nature of Science (NOS) that were found in elementary school teachers’ science identities and their teaching practices. The case study used surveys, interviews, and classroom observations, to construct individual stories that capture participants’ science identities. Emergent themes were identified within the teachers’ identities. Experiences with informed NOS instruction (K-16) were lacking. Instructional practices of teachers aligned with their understandings of science epistemology. Consequences of national, state, and local, education policies were identified. All participants acknowledged needs and desires for professional development in science instruction. However, no efforts were being undertaken to pursue or provide in-service training for science. The statuses of these teachers cannot be unique in a nation possessing numerous similar rural settings. The insight gained through this study provides an important glimpse of U.S. education that policy makers need to appreciate in order to be able to generate the political advocacy necessary to enact quality science education reform. This project concludes with proposals for future training designed to foster understandings of science epistemology that are necessary for effective science teaching. Providing support effecting informed science epistemology (NOS) requires alterations to professional and personal identities; not lists of standards or administrative directives to teach science. Teachers’ naive science identities, transformed through an acculturation of NOS, may generate classroom practices where knowledge of science, not scientific knowledge, becomes foundations for generating new science identities capable of rationally engaging democratic and social issues in our futures.

Committee:

Richard Quantz, PhD (Committee Chair); Thomas Poetter, PhD (Committee Member); Lawrence Boggess, PhD (Committee Member); Nazan Bautista, PhD (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Education Policy; Educational Leadership; Elementary Education; Epistemology; Inservice Training; Public Policy; Science Education; Teacher Education; Teaching

Keywords:

nature of science; identity; elementary teachers; science instruction; educational policy; building policy; state policy; national policy; science reform; teacher efficacy; in-service teaching

Wyner, Garret B.The Wounded Healer: Finding Meaning in Suffering
Psy. D., Antioch University, 2012, Antioch Santa Barbara: Clinical Psychology
In modern history, no event has more profoundly symbolized suffering than the Holocaust. This novel “Husserlian-realist” phenomenological dissertation elucidates the meaning of existential trauma through an interdisciplinary and psychologically integrative vantage point. I use the testimony of a select group of Holocaust witnesses who committed suicide decades after that event as a lens to examine what their despair may reveal about an unprecedented existential, moral, and spiritual crisis of humanity that threatens to undermine our faith in human history and reality itself. By distinguishing what they actually saw about our condition from what they merely believed about reality, I show there is a reliable hope that can fulfill the highest reaches of human nature in the worst conditions. This I call a Psychotherapy of Hope. To this end, I provide a broad overview of the four main forces of psychotherapy to evaluate the role each plays in healing this crisis. I then provide an elucidation of empathic understanding within an “I/Thou” altruistic relationship having power to transform human personality. The primary barrier to personal transformation is shown to be no mere value-neutral indifference, but “cold” indifference or opposition to an objective good. No one can avoid a faith commitment, and the only solution to this crisis is our love or reliance on a self-transcendent good or benevolent super-ego worthy of our trust. By means of this love we can find meaning in our suffering to become more than we are, better than we are, and even transform human life as we know it. By love we may heal our wounds.

Committee:

Juliet Rohde-Brown, PhD (Committee Chair); Sharleen O'Brian-Dolan, PsyD (Committee Member); Donna M. Orange, PhD, PsyD (Committee Member); Kimberly D. Robbins, PsyD (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Behavioral Psychology; Clinical Psychology; Cognitive Therapy; Comparative; Comparative Literature; Developmental Psychology; Divinity; Education; Education History; Education Philosophy; Educational Psychology; Epistemology; Ethics; European History; Evolution and Dev

Keywords:

collective moral crisis; meaning in suffering; existential trauma; Holocaust; faith; moral power; authenticity; empathy; compassion; law of love; psychotherapy of hope; Husserl; realism; empiricism; idealism; transcendence; phenomenological; integrative

Graham, Daria-Yvonne J.Intersectional Leadership: A Critical Narrative Analysis of Servant Leadership by Black Women in Student Affairs
Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.), University of Dayton, 2018, Educational Leadership
Little research exists that centers the experiences of African American women student affairs administrators in higher education. The challenges and barriers that exist for African American women student affairs administrators are complex and directly connected to the history of slavery, race and racism in the United States. Concepts such as mentorship, success, and leadership are situated in normative practices informed by White narratives and privileged vantage points. The aim of this qualitative study is to illuminate how the experiences of African American women student affairs administrators at predominantly White institutions support or contradict leadership models often used as frameworks for development and strategy. The research questions are as follows: What are the experiences of African American women student affairs administrators at predominantly White institutions in higher education as they relate to race and gender? How do participants describe reflecting on, considering, or implementing leadership models in their work as student affairs administrators? And how do the experiences of African American women within student affairs at predominantly White institutions reflect or problematize the Servant Leadership model? The research questions were answered using critical narrative to provide voice to a marginalized population. My dissertation challenges colleges and Universities to consider the impact of using White narratives to standardize behaviors and strategies across all social identities. The findings also urges universities to address environments that continue the oppression and exploitation of Black women student affairs administrators in higher education.

Committee:

Molly Schaller (Committee Chair); Leslie Picca (Committee Member); Mary Ziskin (Committee Member); Michele Welkener (Committee Chair)

Subjects:

African American Studies; African Americans; African History; African Studies; American History; Black History; Black Studies; Education; Education History; Educational Evaluation; Educational Leadership; Educational Sociology; Educational Theory; Epistemology; Ethnic Studies; Gender; Gender Studies; Higher Education; Higher Education Administration; Minority and Ethnic Groups; Multicultural Education; Organizational Behavior

Keywords:

critical race theory; Black Feminist Thought; student affairs; Black women; administrators; leadership; Servant Leadership Theory; servant leadership; decenter; standpoint; standpoint theory; leadership development; intersectionality; race; social justice

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