Theses, Dissertations, and other Required Graduate Degree Essays

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This collection contains digitized SFU theses except for those theses submitted within the last 12 months. If you cannot find the thesis you are looking for please search Recently Submitted Theses as it may be a recently submitted thesis and thus not yet available in Summit.

Intuition and Education

Date created: 
2017-11-29
Abstract: 

This project seeks to validate the kinds of intuitive experiences many people have, but which get subjugated, neglected, or rejected by institutions of knowledge. In particular, it responds to a scholarly silence about psychic, intuitive experiences like gut feelings, pre-cognition, and 'just knowing,' that are unexplained by hegemonic epistemological framing, which often (inadequately) explains intuition as expertise. Motivated by a desire to make these experiences sensible within an intellectual culture wedded to analysis and objective knowledge production, this research seeks to fill a gap in pedagogical practice in the area of understanding and supporting the intuitive function. Through a review of literature about intuition in philosophy and psychology, I recommend that intuition be conceptualized through an emergent psychological theory, transpersonal theory, that accounts for an extended range of inter-subjective and transpersonal consciousness. The dissertation then turns to the self-help realm, where a genre of intuition development books do the work of educating for intuition that formal educators have not. These books provide a framework for understanding intuition as a psychic sense, and recommend a programme of practice for educating the intuitive function. Intuition is presented as a relational, contextual way of knowing that relies on the coherence of the subject-knower, and the pedagogy for intuition directs practitioners towards transformative self-development.Drawing from Foucault's analysis of ancient practices of care of the self, I argue that the programme of practice for intuition development relies on a framework of the self as being both contingent (thus able to transform), and capable of experiencing connection to realms of non-ordinary and non-discursive consciousness. I suggest that the work to become more intuitive challenges the deceit of a subject's alienation from her context. Intuition development pedagogy contains contemplative and reflective practices that enables non-discursive and 'non'-ordinary experiences of consciousness. A similar programme may be a productive way forward to educating for intuition.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Charles Bingham
Department: 
Education: Faculty of Education
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) Ph.D.

Subspace Clustering Methods for Understandable Information Organization

Author: 
Date created: 
2017-12-08
Abstract: 

Clustering has been widely used to identify possible structures in data and help users understand data in an unsupervised manner. Although clustering methods can provide group information for users, it is still challenging for users to efficiently and effectively understand clustering structures. Subspace clustering methods address this challenge by providing each clustering an understandable feature subspace. Moreover, as high-dimensional data has become more and more popular in real-world applications due to the advances of big data technologies, some subspace clustering methods are especially scalable for high-dimensional data. In this thesis, we study the subspace clustering problem in different application scenarios (e.g., semi-supervised and unsupervised) to bridge the semantic gap between low-level clustering structures and high-level understandable meanings, that is, providing understandable information organization for end users. Specifically, we develop a series of novel subspace clustering methods for different application purposes. Taking image retrieval in CBIR without query input as an example, we study how subspace clustering methods can help retrieve relevant images by relevance feedback, by efficient iterative search, or by data summarization. To tackle the challenges arising from real-world applications, we develop three efficient and effective subspace clustering methods to provide preferred or understandable clustering structures for end users. First, we present a semi-supervised subspace clustering method to discover a feature subspace, in which a preferred clustering structure is hidden. Second, we propose a subspace hierarchical clustering method that can generate a balanced hierarchy with semantics to help users search friendly and efficiently. Third, we develop a subspace multi-clustering method that can automatically discover a certain number of feature subspaces, where different clustering structures reside. Comprehensive empirical studies using synthetic and real data sets demonstrate the effectiveness of our proposed methods.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Jian Pei
Department: 
Applied Sciences: School of Computing Science
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) Ph.D.

Social learning and social motivation: Examining parent-child interactions

Author: 
Date created: 
2017-12-07
Abstract: 

Humans are unique in our ability to learn from one another. Our sensitivity to non-verbal communicative cues has been argued to facilitate the learning process, drawing attention to critical information in the learning context. However, it is unclear whether these behaviours derive from children’s motivation to learn, or the motivation to interact and affiliate with others. I examined the use of non-verbal communicative cues in a social learning context in 50 parent-child dyads, with children varying in their desire to interact with others (range = 7-12 years): 26 typically developing (TD) children and 24 children diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). When instructed to teach their child a new skill, parents of TD and ASD children produced similar amounts of non-verbal communicative cues. However, children with ASD appeared to use these cues to adjust their behaviour less than their same-age TD peers. Although children with ASD took longer to learn a novel skill, both when learning from a parent and on their own, children’s learning efficiency (speed of learning) was not related to their use of communicative cues from their parent. Finally, children’s parent-reported social responsiveness (as measured by the Multidimensional Social Competence Scale) was positively related to their use of communicative cues.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Tanya Broesch
Grace Iarocci
Department: 
Arts & Social Sciences: Department of Psychology
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.A.

REP3D: 3D Human Motion Capture Dataset for Athletic Movement

Author: 
Date created: 
2017-12-12
Abstract: 

The field of human 3D pose estimation suffers from a small population of diverse public motion capture datasets, each with a low number of environments and subjects. We propose a new dataset including 45 participants and 22 environments, using motion capture technology that allows data collection in arbitrary locations. The dataset is composed of video and motion capture data for athletic actions selected from golf and baseball, recorded from a plurality of angles and distances. The annotation process for semi-automatically aligning video data with ground truth 3D joint locations is fully outlined. The performance of a modern human 3D pose estimation model on a subset of the dataset is reported.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Greg Mori
Department: 
Applied Sciences: School of Computing Science
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.Sc.

Chinese media in Canada: An exploratory study of Orient Star Media’s cross-media publishing

Author: 
Date created: 
2017-11-28
Abstract: 

Traditional media, such as newspapers, face existential challenges from the rapid rise of new media. This has placed exceptional pressures on Chinese-language media in Canada as their dominant distribution format has been newspapers. Using the Canadian Chinese media agency Orient Star Media as a case study, this report discusses the survival and development of local Chinese media outlets in the context of the development of new media. Due to the growth of the Chinese immigrant community in Canada and the development of new media, Chinese-language media has changed accordingly, particularly in terms of the concept, workflow and basic characteristics of cross-media publishing. This case study of Orient Star Media explores how cross-media publishing fosters the integration of conventional publishing forms and new media forms, which may satisfy current demands of Canadian Chinese media and become the main development trend of local markets in the future.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Hannah McGregor
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: Publishing Program
Thesis type: 
(Project Report) M.Pub.

Plasmonics-Based Alignment Ruler for 3D Circuit Technology

Author: 
Date created: 
2017-12-05
Abstract: 

Metallic nanostructures can be engineered to manipulate light into a certain and unique fashion. One such example of these structures is the so-called plasmonic structures, which allows the coupling of an incident radiation with the surface electrons on the metal surface of the plasmonic nanostructure. This coupling has been utilized in a wide area of applications including structural coloring, which can be used in display, imaging, sensing and security applications. One such important area that can utilize these structures is the three-dimensional integrated circuit technology (3D ICs). 3D ICs technology is about the vertical stacking and integration of various technologies that can include electronics, biological systems, chemistry analysis, energy, etc. to form one complete autonomous system. Integrating these technologies altogether involve several steps, one of which is alignment to accuracies at the micro and nanoscale. Wafer-to-Wafer and Wafer-to-chip alignment is an inherited concept from the CMOS and MEMs technologies. However, using the plasmonic structures and their spectral responses to achieve the alignment in 3D IC technology is a very new concept. In this research, an optical technique for this alignment by incorporating nano-optical technology, known as ‘alignment ruler’, is proposed, implemented, and tested.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Bozena Kaminska
Department: 
Applied Sciences: School of Engineering Science
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.A.Sc.

"Now we learn to live with it": Katzie cultural resilience and the Golden Ears Bridge.

Author: 
Date created: 
2017-08-23
Abstract: 

Despite 150 years of transformative environmental, social, and economic change Aboriginal Peoples in Canada maintain their distinctive identities and cultures. The perseverance of indigenous peoples is of particular interest to scholars studying resilience. Defined variously as a process, trait, or outcome, resilience is a malleable concept used to help explain how individuals, communities, or interlinked social-ecological systems respond to change. I use mental health and ecology-based resilience models to examine how the q́íćəý (Katzie) First Nation of southwestern British Columbia responded to changes imposed by the Golden Ears Bridge—a six-lane bridge built through the centre of their traditional fishing grounds. I conclude that Katzie responses to change, including those imposed by the Golden Ears Bridge, illustrate how Katzie cultural values serve as resilience pivots. These resilience pivots act as the stable core of Katzie culture, helping to perpetuate Katzie identity despite historical and ongoing physical, social, and economic transformations. I expand resilience discourse concerning power and agency via a critical analysis of the Golden Ears Bridge Benefit Agreement negotiation. I conclude that despite the power imbalances that influenced the outcomes of Golden Ears Bridge Benefit Agreement negotiation, Katzie agency continues to influence power dynamics at grassroots and at broader sociopolitical scales, albeit slowly and incrementally. As Katzie and other First Nations achieve greater decision-making power they challenge ideological imperatives that prioritize a prevailing definition of progress as economic growth and urban expansion.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
John R. Welch
Department: 
Environment: School of Resource and Environmental Management
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) Ph.D.

Vancouver stream restoration practices: Piloting a community-based monitoring framework along Still Creek

Date created: 
2017-12-01
Abstract: 

The number of urban stream restoration projects implemented by local governments has expanded exponentially; however, these projects are rarely monitored to assess effectiveness. Community-based monitoring can overcome monitoring challenges, and build community capacity. Still Creek located in Vancouver, BC, provides a case study for creating a community-based monitoring framework and protocol to collect information relevant to local government. The indicator framework is composed of three indicators: (1) Benthic invertebrate diversity, (2) Visual habitat assessment, and (3) Riparian terrestrial biodiversity. Volunteers for data collection were recruited through Meetup.com. Community-based monitoring comes with practical concerns and limitations; however, the data collected can inform continued adaptive management of urban stream restoration projects. Recommendations for Still Creek include establishing a maintenance schedule, with associated roles and budget; further education and awareness initiatives within the community; continued community-engagement; and continued watershed-wide and reach-scale restoration efforts.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Sean Markey
Department: 
Environment: School of Resource and Environmental Management
Thesis type: 
(Project) M.R.M. (Planning)

Emulous Fellowship and the Elizabethan Pastoral Eclogue

Date created: 
2017-12-05
Abstract: 

“Emulous Fellowship and the Elizabethan Pastoral Eclogue” re-conceptualizes literary composition according to ideas of competition unique to early modern England. Elizabethan terms of fellowship—including copemate, emulator, and competitor—might connote positive, reciprocal relationships while simultaneously suggesting opposition, antagonism, and envy. This “emulous” language structures much of the dialogue in Elizabethan English eclogues, a verse form modelled after ancient singing shepherds and popularized by Philip Sidney and Edmund Spenser. My dissertation starts with the eclogue’s humble beginnings in early modern schoolrooms and finishes with its usage in elegizing Elizabeth I and in praising James I. Hence, the dissertation’s arc, loosely based on the Virgilian literary career (or rota), progresses from youth until death, and from shepherds to princes. As both canonical and lesser-known poets present “composition as competition” modelled after the eclogue’s pseudo-rustic lessons, singing contests, amorous invitations, and funeral rehearsals, they showcase unstable, competitive relationships between shepherds and between shepherd-poets. This dissertation aims to restore the eclogue, long regarded as leisurely pastoral verse associated with poetic neophytes, to its Elizabethan context: a significant literary form through which shepherd-poets, engaging their fellows as copemates, emulators, and competitors, cast poetic composition as exercises in power and hierarchy.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Tiffany Jo Werth
Department: 
Arts & Social Sciences: Department of English
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) Ph.D.

The role of intact rock fracture in rockfall initiation

Date created: 
2017-10-11
Abstract: 

High, near-vertical rock faces were investigated to determine the role of intact rock fracturing in rockfall initiation. Terrestrial LiDAR and photogrammetry were used to characterize historical and recent rockfall failure surfaces at two sites – one natural cliff face, and one engineered mine wall. Intact rock fracturing associated with each rockfall was estimated by comparing failure surface geometry to mapped discontinuity orientation and persistence; and by the application of two point cloud roughness analysis techniques. Estimates of intact rock bridge proportion provided the constraints for input parameters of slope-scale distinct element models. These models used a time-dependent strength degradation code, applied to a Voronoi network, to reproduce observed failure mechanisms. These analyses also provided the basis for proposed LiDAR monitoring at each site, and a system for classifying and prioritizing areas of high rockfall initiation hazard. Results of this research allow for better understanding of the interaction between intact rock bridges and discontinuities in high vertical slopes.

Document type: 
Thesis
Senior supervisor: 
Doug Stead
Department: 
Science: Department of Earth Sciences
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.Sc.