VTechWorks

VTechWorks provides global access to Virginia Tech scholarship, including journal articles, books, theses, dissertations, conference papers, slide presentations, technical reports, working papers, administrative documents, videos, images, and more by faculty, students, and staff. Faculty can deposit items to VTechWorks from Elements, including journal articles covered by the University open access policy. Email vtechworks@vt.edu for help.


 
Open Access Policy

Open Access Policy

Virginia Tech's open access policy enables researchers to deposit the accepted version of scholarly articles with no embargo.


Theses and Dissertations

Theses and Dissertations

Virginia Tech was first in the world to require ETDs in 1997, and continues to add scans of older theses and dissertations.


Open Textbooks

Open Textbooks

More than 40 freely available and openly licensed textbooks are among our most downloaded items.


Recent Submissions

A silent spring, or a new cacophony? Invasive plants as maestros of modern soundscapes
Barney, Jacob N.; O'Malley, Grace; Ripa, Gabrielle N.; Drake, Joseph; Franusich, David; Mims, Meryl C. (Wiley, 2024-04-01)
Sound plays a key role in ecosystem function and is a defining part of how humans experience nature. In the seminal book Silent Spring (Carson 1962), Rachel Carson warned of the ecological and environmental harm of pesticide usage by envisioning a future without birdsong. Soundscapes, or the acoustic patterns of a landscape through space and time, encompass both biological and physical processes (Pijanowski et al. 2011). Yet, they are often an underappreciated element of the natural world and the ways in which it is perceived. Scientists are only beginning to quantify changes to soundscapes, largely in response to anthropogenic sounds, but soundscape alteration is likely linked to many dimensions of global change. For example, invasive non-native species (hereafter, invasive species) are near-ubiquitous members of ecosystems globally and threaten both natural and managed ecosystems at great expense. Their impacts to soundscapes may be an important, yet largely unknown, threat to ecosystems and the human and economic systems they support.
Local knowledge reconstructs historical resource use
Castello, Leandro; Martins, Eduardo G.; Sorice, Michael G.; Smith, Eric P.; Almedia, Morgana; Bastos, Gastao C.C.; Gardoso, Luis G.; Clauzet, Mariana; Dopona, Alisson P.; Ferreira, Beatrice; Haimovic, Manuel; Jorge, Marcelo; Mendonça, Jocemar; Ávila-da- Silva, Antonio O.; Roman, Ana P.O.; Ramires, Milena; de Miranda, Laura V.; Lopes, Priscila F.M. (Wiley, 2024-03-07)
Information on natural resource exploitation is vital for conservation but scarce in developing nations, which encompass most of the world and often lack the capacity to produce it. A growing approach to generate information about resource use in the context of developing nations relies on surveys of resource users about their recollections (recall) of past harvests. However, the reliability of harvest recalls remains unclear. Here, we show that harvest recalls can be as accurate to data collected by standardized protocols, despite that recalls are variable and affected by the age of the recollecting person and the length of time elapsed since the event. Samples of harvest recalls permit relatively reliable reconstruction of harvests for up to 39 years in the past. Harvest recalls therefore have strong potential to inform data-poor resource systems and curb shifting baselines around the world at a fraction of the cost of conventional approaches.
El hambre en el cine cubano del Período Especial
Jaime Castillo, Joana (Virginia Tech, 2021-10-06)
This thesis examines the trope of hunger in Cuban cinema produced during the socio-economic context known as the Special Period. Films selected for this discussion are Fresa y chocolate (1993) by Tomás Gutiérrez Alea and Juan Carlos Tabío, and El Rey de La Habana (2015) by Agustí Villaronga. Focused on the analysis of the trope of hunger, this study offers a summary of the Cuban cultural manifestations of the last decades that have addressed the issue of hunger as well as a brief historical context that allows us to understand the development of this trope from 1960 to the present. Focused on the aforementioned films, this study has observed the aesthetic and stylistic particularities used in filmic representations to convey the island's shortcomings. The thesis demonstrates the existence of two main famines within Cuban society: cultural hunger and physiological hunger. Cultural hunger is studied in Fresa y chocolate as a direct consequence of the cultural control of the repressive ideological apparatus implanted in the sixties. The analysis of El Rey de la Habana shows how physiological hunger builds a marginal and abject subject, unable to escape the vicious circle that society has imposed on him.
Why Special Educators Stay: A Phenomenological Examination of Factors Impacting Special Educator Retention in Northern Virginia's Urban Public Schools
Gavin, Matthew (Virginia Tech, 2024-04-12)
Cultural stigma and a looming teacher deficit, exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, have created an increased need for special educators. Considering these issues, this research used traditional phenomenological qualitative methodologies to understand why public-school special education teachers of students with low incidence disabilities (SETs-LIDs) remained in the profession. The purpose was to better understand the lived experiences of SETs-LIDs, and it was designed as a phenomenological qualitative study. The primary research question was "What factors impact SETs-LIDs who continue to teach in special education during difficult times?" Secondary questions were (a) "What are the lived experiences of SETs-LIDs that influence their retention?" and (b) "How do SETs-LIDs cope with the challenges of their work?" Data were obtained through a demographic survey and independent interviews, which were designed to better understand why public-school SET-LIDs remain in the profession. Participants were selected based on responses to the demographic survey, and inclusion criteria included SETs-LIDs with diverse employment backgrounds. Ninety-six special educators responded to the demographic survey and 15 SET-LIDs were interviewed. Textual descriptions generated from the research were work satisfaction from relationships, intrinsic or altruistic motivation, positive administrative experiences, and external factors. Structural descriptions of the research were frustration, a desire for understanding, inequity and exclusion, and uncertainty. The "what" and "how" of individuals impacted by the difficulties of SET-LID attrition were interpreted. Participants described meaningful relationships with students and administrators as being fundamental to their retention. This research also found that SET-LIDs desired resources, understanding, appropriate professional development, and expert guidance. Implications for professional practices and future research were suggested.
An Examination of the Challenges Experienced by Novice Principals Leading Rural Schools in Virginia
Wheeler III, Frank Thomas (Virginia Tech, 2024-04-11)
Novice principals leading rural schools experience unique challenges that define their leadership practices. The purpose of this qualitative study was to examine how novice principals interpret and understand the challenges they experience as developing leaders within a rural school setting in Virginia. The research question for the study was, what challenges do novice principals situated in a rural setting in Virginia experience as leaders of their schools? This study adds to the existing body of research on the challenges novice principals face as leaders of schools situated within a rural community. For this study, six novice principals working in Rural-Remote (Code 43) schools (as defined by the National Center for Education Statistics) in Virginia participated in a 45-minute, one-on-one interview. The findings revealed that the novice rural principals experienced unique challenges with hiring staff, managing limited budgets, wearing multiple hats, distributed leadership, meeting their community's expectations for accessibility and visibility, readily available collaboration opportunities with professionals in similar roles, and intense feelings of ultimate responsibility. Participants hired with previous administrative experience within the district reported smooth transitions to the principalship. Although the participants reported limited activities from their districts to assist with understanding the rural setting, they expressed satisfaction with the overall support provided by their school district. The implications could help school districts, policymakers, and principal preparation programs effectively manage rural principal successions by establishing mentorship programs; providing field experience to aspiring principals; creating robust principal induction programs; and finding creative solutions to attract, hire, and retain rural school staff.