• Landscape Structure And Terrain-Based Hunting Range Models: Exploring Late Prehistoric Land Use In The Nutzotin Mountains, Southcentral Alaska

      Patterson, Jody J.; Murray, Maribeth; Gerlach, S. Craig; Irish, Joel; Mann, Dan (2010)
      Striving for better delineation of site function, land use, and settlement patterns, the data and analyses presented in this dissertation aim to explore more robust and objective avenues of inquiry for addressing the variability and distribution of surface lithic scatters using terrain-based hunting range models. Using large mammal distributions, Athabascan hunting ranges, and topography, landscape metrics, and an exploratory data analysis (EDA) framework, landscape structure is quantified and compared across much of the Alaskan Interior to identify reoccurring patterns related to hunting land use and the range characteristics of caribou, moose, and sheep. Key components of the landscape structure are contrasted with topographic matrices associated with protohistoric and late prehistoric sites via discriminant function classification models. Projectile points, scrapers and bifaces from surface scatters in the Nutzotin Mountains are examined in relationship to these models and their constituent elements. The results show that the association of certain chipped-stone tools and landscape structure are highly autocorrelated. This suggests that landscape structure models can be useful in the generation of constructive hypotheses to test ideas concerning inter-assemblage variability, site function and varied forms of land use.
    • Landscape-scale establishment and population spread of yellow-cedar (Callitropsis nootkatensis) at a leading northern range edge

      Krapek, John P.; Verbyla, David L.; Buma, Brian; Hennon, Paul E.; D'Amore, David V. (2016-12)
      Yellow-cedar is a long-lived conifer of the North Pacific Coastal Temperate Rainforest region that is thought to be undergoing a continued natural range expansion in southeast Alaska. Yellow-cedar is locally rare in northeastern portions of the Alexander Archipelago, and the fairly homogenous climate and forest conditions across the region suggest that yellow-cedar's rarity could be due to its local migrational history rather than constraints on its growth. Yellow-cedar trees in northern range edge locations appear to be healthy, with few dead trees; additionally, yellow-cedar tend to be younger than co-dominant mountain and western hemlock trees, indicating recent establishment in existing forests. To explore yellow-cedar's migration in the region, and determine if the range is expanding into unoccupied habitat, I located 11 leading edge yellow-cedar populations near Juneau, Alaska. I used the geographic context of these populations to determine the topographic, climatic, and disturbance factors associated with range edge population establishment. I used those same landscape variables to model suitable habitat for the species at the range edge. Based on habitat modeling, yellow-cedar is currently only occupying 0.8 percent of its potential landscape niche in the Juneau study area. Tree ages indicate that populations are relatively young for the species, indicating recent migration, and that most populations established during the Little Ice Age climate period (1100 -- 1850). To determine if yellow-cedar is continuing to colonize unoccupied habitat in the region, I located 29 plots at the edges of yellow-cedar stands to measure regeneration and expansion into existing forest communities. Despite abundant suitable habitat, yellow-cedar stand expansion appears stagnant in recent decades. On average, seedlings only dispersed 4.65 m beyond stand boundaries and few seedlings reached mature heights both inside and outside of existing yellow-cedar stands. Mature, 100 --200-year-old trees were often observed abruptly at stand boundaries, indicating that most standboundaries have not moved in the past ~150 years. When observed, seedlings were most common in high light understory plant communities and moderately wet portions of the soil drainage gradient, consistent with the species' autecology in the region. Despite an overall lack of regeneration via seed, yellow-cedar is reproducing via asexual layering in high densities across stands. Layering may be one strategy this species employs to slowly infill habitat and/or persist on the landscape until conditions are more favorable for sexual reproduction. This study leads to a picture of yellow-cedar migration as punctuated, and relatively slow, in southeast Alaska. Yellow-cedar's migration history and currently limited spread at the northeastern range edge should be considered when planning for the conservation and management of this high value tree under future climate scenarios.
    • Landslide mapping using multiscale LiDAR digital elevation models

      Miandad, Javed; Darrow, Margaret; Metz, Paul; Daanen, Ronald; Hendricks, Michael (2018-08)
      This study presents a new methodology to identify landslide and landslide susceptible locations in interior Alaska using only geomorphic properties from light detection and ranging (LiDAR) derivatives (i.e., slope, profile curvature, roughness) and the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI). The study specifically focused on the effect of different resolutions of LiDAR images in identifying landslide locations. I developed a semi-automated object-oriented image classification approach in ArcGIS 10.5, and prepared a landslide inventory from visual observation of hillshade images. The multistage workflow included combining derivatives from 1m, 2.5m, and 5m resolution LiDAR, image segmentation, image classification using a support vector machine classifier, and image generalization to clean false positives. I assessed the accuracy of the classifications by generating confusion matrix tables. Analysis of the results indicated that the scale of LiDAR images played an important role in the classification, and the use of NDVI generated better results in identifying landslide and landslide susceptible places. Overall, the LiDAR 5m resolution image with NDVI generated the best results with a kappa value of 0.55 and an overall accuracy of 83%. The LiDAR 1m resolution image with NDVI generated the highest producer accuracy of 73% in identifying landslide locations. I produced a combined overlay map by summing the individual classified maps, which was able to delineate landslide objects better than the individual maps. The combined classified map from 1m, 2.5m, and 5m resolution LiDAR with NDVI generated producer accuracies of 60%, 80%, 86%, and user accuracies of 39%, 51%, 98% for landslide, landslide susceptible, and stable locations, respectively, with an overall accuracy of 84% and a kappa value of 0.58. The proposed method can be improved by fine-tuning segmented image generation, incorporating other data sets, and developing a standard accuracy assessment technique for object-oriented image analysis.
    • Language Switching On English Compositions Of Latino Students In Alaska And Puerto Rico

      Jimenez-Lugo, Edna; Burleson, Derick (2007)
      The main objective of the research described in this dissertation was to explore how English second language (ESL) writers used their first language (L1) when composing in their second language (L2). This task was undertaken by identifying participants according to their L2 (English) proficiency level, Latino ethnic subgroup, and generational status. Another objective of this study was to better understand the writer's perspective regarding first language use in L2 writing, referred to as language-switching (L-S) in this study. Eight high school Latinos were recruited in Fairbanks, Alaska, and a group of twenty-three college-level participants in Mayaguez, Puerto Rico. Participants were asked to complete a self-report questionnaire, provide a writing sample, and participate in a guided focus group discussion. Findings indicated that participants with low L2 proficiency were more likely to switch languages at the lexical level than participants at an intermediate or advanced level of English proficiency. Switching languages from English to Spanish at the lexical level was of no benefit for text coherence. Lack of L2 linguistic competence was a contributing factor for switching to the L1 as participants compensated for L2 difficulties with their L1 knowledge at the morphological, syntactical, and semantic level. A qualitative analysis of the focus group data suggests that thinking in the L1 is a common strategy for ESL learners, which they perceive to be an advantage for generating ideas faster and to decide what to write. However, participants' perceived writing text in the L1 for later content translation to be counterproductive. An important factor that cannot be discounted and that may have contributed to the language switching frequency among the participants in this study is the learning contexts: learning English in the U.S. versus learning English in Puerto Rico. Additional research is needed to explore the relationship between language switching and learning context. I conclude this dissertation by suggesting pedagogical implications regarding L2 writing instruction and for placement of L2 learners in ESL programs.
    • The Last Great Indian War (Nulato 1851)

      Wright, Miranda Hildebrand; Black, Lydia T.; Schweitzer, Peter P.; Morrow, Phyllis (1995-04)
      In this study, I review the causes of an Athabaskan conflict in western Alaska which occurred in 1851. This hostility is known in published sources as the Nulato Massacre. In oral tradition the same incident is referred to either as the Last Great Indian War or simply "The Nulato War". Critical reading and analysis of primary and secondary historical source materials offer insight into external pressures on the indigenous population, the analysis of oral tradition the resulting internal pressures. The combination of historic documentation and oral tradition provide a basis for the analysis of the Nulato Massacre as an internecine conflict. The Koyukon point of view reveals this conflict to be the result of a shamanistic power contest. While it may be argued that the conflict was precipitated ultimately by economic and social post-contact dislocations, the Koyukon perceive it as a disturbance of their concept of universal psychic unity, an overarching conceptualization which encompasses all aspects of Koyukon worldview. It was imperative in their view to regain control of their lives. The role of the shaman in such restoration was paramount.
    • Latching mechanism between UAV and UGV team for mine rescue

      Hoffman, Sarah; Peterson, Rorik; Hatfield, Michael; Lin, Chuen-Sen (2017-08)
      Safety is a concern in the mining industry when a tunnel collapse could result in the casualties and deaths of workers and rescuers due to the hazards posed to them. The Alaska Center for Unmanned Aircraft Systems Integration (ACUASI) is working on a project to increase mine safety by sending an Unmanned Ground Vehicle (UGV) fit with LiDAR sensors and an Unmanned Aircraft Vehicle (UAV) to map the tunnels and to find a collapsed tunnel in an effort to determine the location and condition of trapped workers. The UGV will drive to the collapsed tunnel, at which point the U AV will launch to find any gap in the tunnel that it could fly through to assess the damage. This overall project requires a releasing and latching system to secure the UAV, allow it to launch at the appropriate location, and dock the UAV when its mission is complete or its battery needs recharging. A simple pin-through design was adopted to latch and release the UAV by implementing a Scotch yoke and servo as the actuator. All necessary components were analyzed for stress using two forces, 16 N (maximum takeoff weight of the potential UAV) and 150 N (im pact force of the maximum w eight of the potential UAV from 0.15 m or just under 6 inches). Three sets of properties for PLA were applied in the stress analyses to thoroughly investigate the feasibility of creating the parts out of PLA, a commonly used plastic for 3D printing. These three property sets were found in literature and consisted of bulk values of PLA, empirically determined values of 3D printed PLA, and values calculated using porosity equations. It was found that most components would function satisfactorily without risking fracture except in extreme conditions. The stress analyses for the landing gear illustrated its weaknesses, revealing a potential need for a different material or redesign. The landing gear as it is could be utilized under nominal operation, but it could not withstand any significant impact such as one that might occur in the event of a hard landing. The latching mechanism itself succeeded in securing the UAV. Future work includes redesigning the landing gear, another design concept for a latching mechanism that may prove more reliable, and adjusting the landing pad in the event a different UAV is selected.
    • Late Cenozoic unroofing sequence and foreland basin development of the central Alaska Range: implications from the Nenana Gravel

      Thoms, E. E. (2000-05)
      Facies architecture analysis, lithostratigraphy, and ⁴⁰AR/³⁹AR analyses of syn-orogenic sediments from the Nenana Gravel consistently demonstrate that deformation and erosion of the Late Cenozoic Alaska Range progressed in a foreland propagating sequence. Alluvial braidplain sediments, the oldest sourced from south of the present range divide, were shed into depozones exhibiting characteristics that indicate the growth of an underlying orogenic wedge primarily controlled deposition. Those characteristics include very immature and locally derived sediments, erosional unconformities, evidence for the competing influences of uplift and subsidence, lithology transitions that are correlated with facies transitions, and evidence for drainages that were defeated by surface uplift. Deposition of the Nenana Gravel took place between roughly 7 and 3 Ma. The Nenana Gravel depositional system changed when deformation within the proximal reaches of the basin brought resistant basement rocks to the surface forcing antecedent drainages to incise and abandon the alluvial braidplain they once fed.
    • Late quaternary and future biome simulations for Alaska and eastern Russia

      Hendricks, Amy S.; Walsh, John; Saito, Kazuyuki; Bigelow, Nancy; Bhatt, Uma (2016-05)
      Arctic biomes across a region including Alaska and Eastern Russia were investigated using the BIOME4 biogeochemical and biogeography vegetation model. This study investigated past (the last 21,000 years), present, and future vegetation distributions in the study area, using climate forcing from five CMIP5 models (CCSM4, GISS-E2-R, MIROC-ESM, MPI-ESM, and MRI-CGCM3). The present-day BIOME4 simulations were generally consistent with current vegetation observations in the study region characterized by evergreen and deciduous taiga and shrub tundras. Paleoclimatological simulations were compared with pollen data samples collected in the study region. Pre-industrial biome simulations are generally similar to the modern reconstruction but differ by having more shrub tundra in both Russia and Alaska to the north, as well as less deciduous taiga in Alaska. Pre-industrial simulations were in good agreement with the pollen data. Mid-Holocene simulations place shrub tundras along the Arctic coast, and in some cases along the eastern coast of Russia. Simulations for the Mid-Holocene are in good agreement with pollen-based distributions of biomes. Simulations for the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) show that the Bering Land Bridge was covered almost entirely by cushion forb, lichen and moss tundra, shrub tundra, and graminoid tundra. Three out of the five models’ climate data produce evergreen and deciduous taiga in what is now southwestern Alaska, however the pollen data does not support this. The distributions of cushion forb, lichen, and moss tundra and graminoid tundra differ noticeably between models, while shrub tundra distributions are generally similar. Future simulations of BIOME4 based on the RCP8.5 climate scenario indicate a northward shift of the treeline and a significant areal decrease of shrub tundra and graminoid tundra regions in the 21st century. Intrusions of cool mixed, deciduous, and conifer forests above 60°N, especially in southwest Alaska, were notable. Across eastern Russia, deciduous taiga begins to overtake evergreen taiga, except along the coastal regions where evergreen taiga remains the favored biome.
    • Late Quaternary vegetation and lake level changes in central Alaska

      Bigelow, Nancy Horner; Edwards, Mary E.; Powers, W. Roger (1997)
      The threat of significant high-latitude global warming over the next 50 years requires that we assess the response of vegetation to climate change. One approach is to see how plants have reacted to past climate change. In this study high-resolution reconstructions of past vegetation and climate, based on pollen and lake level changes, provide useful insights into vegetation and climate change in central Alaska since 14,000 years ago. Climate changed substantially at about 12,000 years ago, between 11,000 and 10,000 years ago, and about 8,000 years ago. At 12,000 years ago, a significant transition is reflected by the appearance of shrub birch into a region that had been dominated by grass, sage, and sedge. The vegetation became denser; shrubs occupied the moister sites, and herbaceous taxa grew on well-drained, exposed ridges and slopes. Lake levels increased at this time, suggesting the climate became warmer and wetter than it had been previously. Between 11,000 and 10,000 years ago, the vegetation at some sites reverted to a grass and sage-rich flora, suggesting a return to drier and/or cooler conditions. This period of climate change has not been recognized before from pollen records in central Alaska. The timing of this vegetation shift suggests it is related to the Younger Dryas event, a world-wide episode of climatic deterioration. About 8,500 to 8,000 years ago, spruce appeared in the region, coincident with a significant lake level rise, suggesting that the spruce expansion was aided by wetter conditions, as well as warmer temperatures. In central Alaska, periods of past vegetation change are marked by shifts in moisture. Today, central Alaska receives very little rain, and in some areas the vegetation is moisture-limited, suggesting that during the past, changes in moisture could have had a strong effect on the vegetation. In terms of future global change, this study suggests that any shifts in moisture associated with the predicted temperature changes, especially towards drier conditions, will strongly affect the current vegetation distribution.
    • Later that night: three studies in horror

      Michael, Kathryn; Kamerling, Leonard; Farmer, Daryl; Carr, Richard (2015-05)
      To write a successful screenplay is to form a blueprint, a set of dramatic instructions; a structural plan to be executed at a later date by film artists and technicians. It is vital not to become attached to the details; components such as character names and place settings will often change as a project undergoes different stages of development. Above all else, what must remain on the page is the story's dramatic structure, its intention. If this is accomplished, the integrity of the screenplay is intact, and the writer is in control. Later that Night: Three Studies in Horror is a compilation of three short screenplays, each showcasing a popular horror subgenre. The screenplays follow Anna and Gabriel, a pair of con-artists, as they try to maneuver their way through the back roads of Nebraska on one fateful summer night. In In Sight, the pair is wrapping up a con job when an unexpected guest turns up on the front porch in need of help, with surprising consequences. In Pit Stop, a routine fill-up at a local gas station takes a bloody turn for the worse when two men attempt a hold-up. Finally, in Overnight Guest, Anna's freedom from Gabriel is cut short when his spirit refuses to grant her peace. These three screenplays are written as stand-alone pieces that can be viewed in chronological order to form a continuous storyline. The purpose of this structure is to highlight specific subgenres of horror in each of the three scripts and to create an understanding of how each functions as a storytelling genre. In Sight is a psychological thriller, focusing on feelings of unease and impending action. Pit Stop is a "gore script", highlighting gratuitous amounts of blood and death. Overnight Guest is a story of the supernatural, with the protagonist's life being directly affected by an angry spirit.
    • Lateral magma transport during the 1912 eruption of Novarupta: insights from magnetic imaging

      Hill, Graham J.; Eichelberger, John; Freymueller, Jeff; Faust-Larsen, Jessica (2003-08)
      The Valley of Ten Thousand Smokes (VTTS), on the Alaska Peninsula, was formed by the cataclysmic eruption of Novarupta (Katmai) in 1912. During the eruption, three magma types were tapped (7-8 km³ of rhyolite, 4.5 km³ of dacite, and 1 km³ of andesite). Contemporaneous collapse of Mount Katmai while Katmai-like andesite and dacite magma joined the eruption at Novarupta provides incontrovertible evidence for magma transport from beneath Mount Katmai caldera to the vent 10 km west at Novarupta (Hildreth and Fierstein, 2000). Shallow storage of the andesite and dacite magmas beneath Mt. Katmai prior to the eruption of 1912 is consistent with the volume of collapse at Katmai, equivalent to the combined volume of andesite and dacite erupted. A ground-based magnetic survey of the area was conducted to characterize the intriguing connection between Mt. Katmai and Novarupta. The magnetic field strength and gradient survey results suggest a linear anomaly that is best modelled by the presence of a shallowly (200-300 m) emplaced dike on the order of 5-10 m wide, which resembles the known physical properties of the 7 m-wide rhyolitic dike discovered during the drilling of Inyo Domes.
    • Latitudinal gradients in leaf litter decomposition in streams: Effects of leaf chemistry and temperature

      Irons, John Gillam, Iii (1993)
      Autumnal leaf litter that falls into streams of forested regions forms a major source of energy for stream food webs. The processing of this litter has been studied for many years, and two generalizations have come from this research: (1) nitrogen concentration is positively correlated with breakdown rate, and (2) temperature is negatively correlated with breakdown rate. Along with investigators in Michigan and Costa Rica, I examined these generalizations by estimating breakdown rates of litter of ten tree species with widely varying nutritional quality along the latitudinal gradient of Costa Rica to Michigan to Alaska. At each site, litter processing experiments were done using leaves of the same ten tree species and the same methods in streams with similar character. We found that (1) condensed tannin, a plant defense against herbivory, was more highly correlated (negatively) with breakdown rates than was nitrogen (positively correlated with breakdown), and (2) breakdown rate showed a complex response to water temperature (i.e., latitude). I propose a model of leaf litter breakdown in which the microbial contribution to litter breakdown is negatively correlated with latitude (i.e., temperature) and the invertebrate contribution to litter breakdown is positively correlated with latitude. In addition, I suggest that secondary compounds of low solubility, especially condensed tannin, should be considered along with nitrogen when evaluating a tree species for leaf litter quality.
    • Latitudinal patterns of amino acid cycling and plant N uptake among North American forest ecosystems

      McFarland, Jack W.; Ruess, Roger; Boone, Richard; Chapin, Stuart F. III; Kielland, Knut; Hendrick, Ronald L. (2008-12)
      Interest in the role of organic nitrogen (N) to the N economy of forest ecosystems is gaining momentum as ecologists revise the traditional paradigm in N cycling to emphasize the importance of depolymerization of soil organic matter (SOM) in controlling the bioavailability of N in forest soils. Still, there has yet to be a coordinated effort aimed at developing general patterns for soil organic N cycling across ecosystems that vary in climate, SOM quality, plant taxa, or dominant mycorrhizal association: ectomycorrhizae (EM) vs. arbuscular mycorrhizae (AM). In this study, experimental additions of 13C15N-glycine and 15NH4+ were traced in situ through fine root and soil N pools for six North American forest ecosystems in an effort to define patterns of plant and microbial N utilization among divergent forest types. Recovery of 15N in extractable soil pools varied by N form, forest type, and sampling period. At all sites, immobilization by the soil microbial biomass represented the largest short-term (<24 h) biotic sink for NH4+ and amino acid-N, but differences in microbial turnover of the two N forms were linked to cross-ecosystem differences in SOM quality, particularly the availability of labile carbon (C). At the conclusion of the experiment, microbial N turnover had transferred the majority of immobilized 15N to non-extractable soil N pools. By comparison, fine root uptake of NH4+ and glycine-N was low (<10% total tracer recovery), but 15N enrichment of this pool was still increasing at the final sampling period. Since there was no significant loss of 15N tracer within the bulk soil after 14 days for any forest type except sugar maple, it suggests plants have the capacity to capitalize on multiple N turnover events and thus represent an important long-term sink for ecosystem N. Plants in all stands had some capacity to absorb glycine intact, but plant N preference again varied by forest type. Relative uptake of amino acid-N versus inorganic N was lowest in tulip poplar and highest in red pine and balsam poplar, while white oak, sugar maple, and white spruce stands were statistically near unity with respect to the two N forms. However, N uptake ratios were threefold higher in EM-dominated stands than in AM-dominated stands indicating mycorrhizal association in part mediated plant N preference. Thus, amino acids represent an important component of the N economies of a broad spectrum of forest ecosystems, but their relevance to plant nutrition likely varies as a function of microbial demand for C as well as N.
    • Launch environment data logger design and implementation for CubeSats

      Johnson, Morgan; Thorsen, Denise; Hawkins, Joe; Raskovic, Dejan (2016-12)
      Designing to the CubeSat standard has allowed many universities the ability to launch satellites missions to space. These small satellites are secondary, or even tertiary, payloads on launch vehicles. In fact, these ride-share payloads are frequently used as ballast for weight and balance of the launch vehicle and are often mounted near the engines. The environment experienced by these CubeSats is not well known. The Launch Environment Data Logger was designed to measure temperature and vibrations of the launch vehicle to better understand what kind of environment these small satellites must survive on their ride to space. Through this thesis the requirements of the Launch Environment Data Logger system are established and the initial design developed.
    • Layout and fabrication process from generic to high speed printed circuit boards (PCBS)

      Reddy, Indrani (2005-12)
      Printed circuit boards (PCBs) are exceeding the limits of the classic board design. The goal of this thesis is to inform the reader about the layout and fabrication of PCBs from generic to high speed designs. In chapter 2, Basic Design and Layout, I provide the generic PCB design that will give a basic understanding of board layout and fabrication using Cadence® software tools, which will simplify understanding of the high speed PCB design. Cadence® provides a path to designing PCBs, but to rapidly prototype the design we need to implement simulations. We accomplished the simulations using the Advanced Design System (ADS) tool which is used for designing high frequency PCBs. In this thesis the reader will see examples developed to illustrate high speed issues in digital designs using ADS and correlated simulated and measured values.
    • Leading and following at a 21st century university: identifying desired outcomes for a student leadership program

      Trabant, Tonya Denise (2004-05)
      Leadership has been discussed, debated, practiced, and researched for millennia. In the 20th century alone, no less than ten types of leadership were defined and empirically studied. In the higher education context, student leadership development is addressed from a wide variety of theoretical and programmatic approaches and co-curricular leadership programs have been one of the fastest growing areas in higher education in the past decade. The University of Alaska Fairbanks (UAF) Leadership Program was initially structured as adaptations of other models. Critical to the future success of the program is the reformation of elements to fit UAF's unique context and an adequate outcomes assessment plan to determine that elements are functioning as intended. In order to develop an understanding of leading and following at UAF, program stakeholders participated in focus group interviews, individual interviews, and a written assessment. Participant observation was also used to gather rich data about the institutional culture of leadership at UAF. Data was thematically analyzed as well as categorized using national standards. One final result is a model of desired student leadership competencies for the UAF Leadership Program.
    • Leadlight

      Dyer, Daniel; Burleson, Derick; Hirsch, Alexander; Coffman, Chris; Carr, Richard (2016-05)
      This collection of poems explores the spiritual experience of trauma and the diverse stimuli, such as violence, sexual abuse, loss, witness, and epiphany that may instigate fragmentation and repressions in the subconscious. The many allusions throughout the collection, from Homeric and Shakespearean characters to eastern religious figures, serve to imbue the work with a sense of variegation while also gentrifying and consecrating trauma. The poems take much inspiration from Jacques Lacan’s work on trauma, language, and the gaze, the writings of existentialists Sartre and Kierkegaard, and, of course, the poet’s own biography, and are arranged so as to suggest a coherent, albeit fragmented, narrative profluence. The collection as a whole attempts to emphasize the similarities between religious and traumatic experience and the ways in which language may or may not serve to reorient the traumatize mind.
    • Learning from the local scale: identifying and addressing local blind spots in Arctic environmental governance

      Curry, Tracie; Meek, Chanda; Trainor, Sarah; Berman, Matthew; Lopez, Ellen; Streever, Bill (2019-08)
      Environmental governance in the context of climate change adaptation brings together diverse actors and stakeholders to develop and enact policies across a broad range of scales. However, local needs and priorities are often mismatched with those pursued by entities at different levels of decision-making. This mismatch is perpetuated, in part, by the dominating influence of the Western worldview in knowledge processes involving the creation, sharing, and use of environmental knowledge. Persistent biases that favor Western science and technical information while marginalizing other important sources like local and Indigenous knowledge create blind spots that may adversely affect adaptation outcomes. In this research, a case study of the Native Village of Wainwright, Alaska is used to explore the topic of information blind spots in environmental governance resulting from 1) low resolution tools employed within broad scale adaptation initiatives; 2) preferences for easily quantifiable information; and 3) the challenge of communicating context-rich details to outside decision makers, given disciplinary biases and organizational conventions. This dissertation comprises manuscripts based on three studies undertaken to address the above blind spots in specific areas of adaptation planning. The first manuscript furthers conventional methods of adaptation classification through a place-based approach that uses directed content analysis to identify aspects of local adaptation not readily captured by low resolution frameworks. The second manuscript employs contextual analysis and extends Ostrom's Institutional Analysis and Development framework to characterize the role of local informal institutions in adaptation and provide insights into how difficult-to-quantify social and cultural norms might be leveraged in planned adaptation initiatives. The third manuscript reports on a formative endeavor that looked practically at conventions for communicating environmental change to public sector decision-makers, and tested a survey that explored the potential for context-rich visuals and other reporting strategies to effectively convey information about local observations and experiences of change.
    • Learning To Teach Where You Are: Preparation For Context-Responsive Teaching In Alaska's Teacher Certification Programs

      Vinlove, Amy Louise; Richey, Jean; Hornig, Joan; Hirshberg, Diane; Rickard, Anthony; Roehl, Roy (2012)
      Context-responsive teaching is defined in this project as teaching that responds to individual student needs and interests, linguistic backgrounds and family characteristics, the local community and the local natural environment. Context-responsive teaching, as defined in Chapter 1 of this dissertation, consolidates into one concept the pedagogical knowledge, skills and dispositions associated with culturally responsive teaching, place-based teaching, differentiated instruction, and purposeful collaboration with parents, families and communities. The research completed for this project examines current practices relative to preparing context-responsive teachers in Alaska's elementary and secondary teacher certification programs. A survey examining context-responsive teacher preparation experiences was developed and distributed to practicing teachers in Alaska who received their initial teaching certification from the University of Alaska Anchorage (UAA), the University of Alaska Fairbanks (UAF), or the University of Alaska Southeast (UAS), and who graduated in 2006, 2007 or 2008. The experiences of the graduates were juxtaposed with information on the three programs gathered through interviews with teacher educators currently working at UAA, UAF and UAS. Current practices at the three institutions are examined in relation to a literature-based framework of "best practices" in context-responsive teacher preparation. Following a presentation of the data gathered in this mixed-method investigation, nine research-based recommendations are offered for strengthening context-responsive teacher preparation in the state of Alaska.
    • Learning to work and think for life

      Sprankle, Elizabeth; Daku, Mike; Duke, J. Robert; Boldt, Frank (2019-08)
      This paper explores literature related to the use of restorative discipline and restorative practices in school communities. It draws heavily on the ideas presented in Ron and Roxanne Claassens’ book, Discipline that Restores, in order to illustrate why students, staff, administrators, families and the community connected to a traditional public high school, such as West Valley High School, in Fairbanks, Alaska, would benefit from shifting to a restorative approach to discipline. The paper also examines numerous sources to demonstrate why embedding lessons related to social justice and restorative practices into content areas is logical and beneficial and attainable and that both these embedded courses and this approach to discipline support and foster content related to a Career Technical Education pathway focused on Education, Public & Human Services.