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  • Jokinen, Jukka (Helsingin yliopisto, 2007)
    The focus of this study is on statistical analysis of categorical responses, where the response values are dependent of each other. The most typical example of this kind of dependence is when repeated responses have been obtained from the same study unit. For example, in Paper I, the response of interest is the pneumococcal nasopharengyal carriage (yes/no) on 329 children. For each child, the carriage is measured nine times during the first 18 months of life, and thus repeated respones on each child cannot be assumed independent of each other. In the case of the above example, the interest typically lies in the carriage prevalence, and whether different risk factors affect the prevalence. Regression analysis is the established method for studying the effects of risk factors. In order to make correct inferences from the regression model, the associations between repeated responses need to be taken into account. The analysis of repeated categorical responses typically focus on regression modelling. However, further insights can also be gained by investigating the structure of the association. The central theme in this study is on the development of joint regression and association models. The analysis of repeated, or otherwise clustered, categorical responses is computationally difficult. Likelihood-based inference is often feasible only when the number of repeated responses for each study unit is small. In Paper IV, an algorithm is presented, which substantially facilitates maximum likelihood fitting, especially when the number of repeated responses increase. In addition, a notable result arising from this work is the freely available software for likelihood-based estimation of clustered categorical responses.
  • Järvilehto, Tarmo (Helsingin yliopisto, 2007)
    The multiplier ideals of an ideal in a regular local ring form a family of ideals parametrized by non-negative rational numbers. As the rational number increases the corresponding multiplier ideal remains unchanged until at some point it gets strictly smaller. A rational number where this kind of diminishing occurs is called a jumping number of the ideal. In this manuscript we shall give an explicit formula for the jumping numbers of a simple complete ideal in a two dimensional regular local ring. In particular, we obtain a formula for the jumping numbers of an analytically irreducible plane curve. We then show that the jumping numbers determine the equisingularity class of the curve.
  • Rautiainen, Jukka (Helsingin yliopisto, 2012)
    The main object of this study was to develop a learning environment that would promote students interests in higher education of chemistry. The study was guided by the theories of problem-based learning and inquiry. They acted as a theoretical guideline to this study. This thesis consists of three parts that include all together six phases. The first part, the requirement analysis, defines the need for a meaningful learning environment in higher education of chemistry by a survey concerning curriculums. In the second part, a new problem-based learning environment is developed for the laboratory studies of chemistry for one group at university of applied sciences and one group at university. In the third part, based on the research results, a new learning environment for chemistry was developed for higher education. In the last part of the research one group participated from the university of applied sciences and two groups from the university. Both qualitative and quantitative research methods are combined in research. Development was observed comprehensively with the help of research methods. The main question of this study is what kind of problem-based learning environment in higher education of chemistry is both useful and interesting to students in higher education. The answer to this main question was received by analyzing the survey materials and the learning environments. All together 26 chemistry teachers and 38 students from universities of applied sciences and universities took part on the study. The material was analyzed by content analysis and statistical methods. The reliability of the research was ensured by Cohen´s kappa coefficient. This research shows that students find problem-based learning environment both interesting and useful. Thorough introduction and a scenario based on a true case are keys to an interesting learning environment. Tutor/chair must take an active role in guiding the interaction. As a whole the research gave new information about development of new problem-based learning environment. A new interesting problem-based learning environment was developed in this study. It utilizes the real life environmental problems in higher education. The learning environment is suitable for different fields of chemistry in higher education.
  • Pernaa, Johannes (Helsingin yliopisto, 2011)
    The main aim of the present study was to develop information and communication technology (ICT) based chemistry education. The goals for the study were to support meaningful chemistry learning, research-based teaching and diffusion of ICT innovations. These goals were used as guidelines that form the theoretical framework for this study. This Doctoral Dissertation is based on eight-stage research project that included three design researches. These three design researches were scrutinized as separate case studies in which the different cases were formed according to different design teams: i) one researcher was in charge of the design and teachers were involved in the research process, ii) a research group was in charge of the design and students were involved in the research process, and iii) the design was done by student teams, the research was done collaboratively, and the design process was coordinated by a researcher. The research projects were conducted using mixed method approach, which enabled a comprehensive view on education design. In addition, the three central areas of design research: problem analysis, design solution and design process were included in the research, which was guided by the main research questions formed according to these central areas: 1) design solution: what kind of elements are included in ICT-based learning environments that support meaningful chemistry learning and diffusion of innovation, 2) problem analysis: what kind of new possibilities the designed learning environments offer for the support of meaningful chemistry learning, and 3) design process: what kind of opportunities and challenges does collaboration bring to the design of ICT-based learning environments? The main research questions were answered according to the analysis of the survey and observation data, six designed learning environments and ten design narratives from the three case studies. Altogether 139 chemistry teachers and teacher students were involved in the design processes. The data was mainly analysed by methods of qualitative content analysis. The first main result from the study give new information on the meaningful chemistry learning and the elements of ICT-based learning environment that support the diffusion of innovation, which can help in the development of future ICT-education design. When the designed learning environment was examined in the context of chemistry education, it was evident that an ICT-based chemistry learning environment supporting the meaningful learning of chemistry motivates the students and makes the teacher s work easier. In addition, it should enable the simultaneous fulfilment of several pedagogical goals and activate higher-level cognitive processes. The learning environment supporting the diffusion of ICT innovation is suitable for Finnish school environment, based on open source code, and easy to use with quality chemistry content. According to the second main result, new information was acquired about the possibilities of ICT-based learning environments in supporting meaningful chemistry learning. This will help in setting the goals for future ICT education. After the analysis of design solutions and their evaluations, it can be said that ICT enables the recognition of all elements that define learning environments (i.e. didactic, physical, technological and social elements). The research particularly demonstrates the significance of ICT in supporting students motivation and higher-level cognitive processes as well as versatile visualization resources for chemistry that ICT makes possible. In addition, research-based teaching method supports well the diffusion of studied innovation on individual level. The third main result brought out new information on the significance of collaboration in design research, which guides the design of ICT education development. According to the analysis of design narratives, it can be said that collaboration is important in the execution of scientifically reliable design research. It enables comprehensive requirement analysis and multifaceted development, which improves the reliability and validity of the research. At the same time, it sets reliability challenges by complicating documenting and coordination, for example. In addition, a new method for design research was developed. Its aim is to support the execution of complicated collaborative design projects. To increase the reliability and validity of the research, a model theory was used. It enables time-pound documenting and visualization of design decisions that clarify the process. This improves the reliability of the research. The validity of the research is improved by requirement definition through models. This way learning environments that meet the design goals can be constructed. The designed method can be used in education development from comprehensive to higher level. It can be used to recognize the needs of different interest groups and individuals with regard to processes, technology and substance knowledge as well as interfaces and relations between them. The developed method has also commercial potential. It is used to design learning environments for national and international market.
  • Tikkanen, Greta (Helsingin yliopisto, 2010)
    The main purpose of the research was to illustrate chemistry matriculation examination questions as a summative assessment tool, and represent how the questions have evolved over the years. Summative assessment and its various test item classifications, Finnish goal-oriented curriculum model, and Bloom’s Revised Taxonomy of Cognitive Objectives formed the theoretical framework for the research. The research data consisted of 257 chemistry questions from 28 matriculation examinations between 1996 and 2009. The analysed test questions were formulated according to the national upper secondary school chemistry curricula 1994, and 2003. Qualitative approach and theory-driven content analysis method were employed in the research. Peer review was used to guarantee the reliability of the results. The research was guided by the following questions: (a) What kinds of test item formats are used in chemistry matriculation examinations? (b) How the fundamentals of chemistry are included in the chemistry matriculation examination questions? (c) What kinds of cognitive knowledge and skills do the chemistry matriculation examination questions require? The research indicates that summative assessment was used diversely in chemistry matriculation examinations. The tests included various test item formats, and their combinations. The majority of the test questions were constructed-response items that were either verbal, quantitative, or experimental questions, symbol questions, or combinations of the aforementioned. The studied chemistry matriculation examinations seldom included selected-response items that can be either multiple-choice, alternate choice, or matching items. The relative emphasis of the test item formats differed slightly depending on whether the test was a part of an extensive general studies battery of tests in sciences and humanities, or a subject-specific test. The classification framework developed in the research can be applied in chemistry and science education, and also in educational research. Chemistry matriculation examinations are based on the goal-oriented curriculum model, and cover relatively well the fundamentals of chemistry included in the national curriculum. Most of the test questions related to the symbolism of chemical equation, inorganic and organic reaction types and applications, the bonding and spatial structure in organic compounds, and stoichiometry problems. Only a few questions related to electrolysis, polymers, or buffer solutions. None of the test questions related to composites. There were not any significant differences in the emphasis between the tests formulated according to the national curriculum 1994 or 2003. Chemistry matriculation examinations are cognitively demanding. The research shows that the majority of the test questions require higher-order cognitive skills. Most of the questions required analysis of procedural knowledge. The questions that only required remembering or processing metacognitive knowledge, were not included in the research data. The required knowledge and skill level varied slightly between the test questions in the extensive general studies battery of tests in sciences and humanities, and subject-specific tests administered since 2006. The proportion of the Finnish chemistry matriculation examination questions requiring higher-order cognitive knowledge and skills is very large compared to what is discussed in the research literature.
  • Laakso, Lauri (Helsingin yliopisto, 2004)
  • Frantz, Jonas (Helsingin yliopisto, 2004)
  • Majidi, Sharareh (Helsingin yliopisto, 2013)
    Physics has been always one of the most challenging subjects to learn for university and school students. It is also considered a demanding topic for teachers who aim to teach it efficiently. Therefore, one of the most important notions in physics is to find suitable ways to maximize productive learning and teaching outcomes. One of the most important factors that influence physics learning and teaching is the organization of physics knowledge and the ability to arrange its concepts properly. In physics education, the organization of knowledge and meaningful structural patterns is a vital component of teachers subject matter knowledge. Correspondingly, physics textbooks, teachers, and lecturers are expected to translate their subject matter knowledge with the most pedagogically effective approaches. So another central component in physics education is teachers pedagogical content knowledge, which is about a) the most essential representation forms (e.g. analogies, models, examples, simulation) that teachers employ in the classroom, and b) students misconceptions and difficulties as well as the best approaches to diminish those complications. This thesis examines the organization of knowledge and representation forms used by teachers and found in university and upper secondary school textbooks. Magnetostatics is recognized as one of the most challenging topics in physics, which the society of physics education has largely disregarded. In this study, we concentrate on two important magnetic laws of Biot-Savart/magnetic flux density and Ampère. These laws as well as their applications and examples are employed broadly in both upper secondary schools and universities. These topics provide us sufficient space to investigate the organization of physics knowledge as well as the most appropriate representation forms. In these studies, we utilized a variety of qualitative and quantitative methods to collect data. Different samples are selected from standard university textbooks, teachers at the University of Helsinki, Department of Physics, and some teachers from highly reputed upper secondary schools in Helsinki, Finland. To study the organization of knowledge of teachers and textbooks, their structures are first portrayed by means of concept maps. Second, structural measures are applied to evaluate any meaningful patterns detected in these concept maps. Structural measures contain complex network observables such as density of links, hierarchy, clustering, cycles, and loops. In other cases, the structural measures are confined to the number of dead-ended concepts, core concepts, incoming and outgoing links. Results reveal certain similarities and differences between the ways knowledge is organized and arranged within the subject matter of teachers or textbooks. The results report the shared concepts and structural patterns between university teachers and the textbooks they use for their teaching purposes and identify differences between the structural properties of two laws of Biot-Savart and Ampère. The rest of the results inform us about a variety of forms that could be employed to represent these laws. Recognized representation forms include experiments and demonstrations, stating facts in physics, inductive and deductive reasoning, examples, and explanations, and models such as analogies, mathematical models, and visual models are ultimately drawn from the data analysis through this research. The novelty of this thesis is its briefly examination and discussion of the possible link between the organization of knowledge, which functions as teachers subject matter, and their representation forms, which serve as their pedagogical content knowledge. This thesis also discusses the implications for teaching and learning as well as practical applications of it.
  • Kärnä, Pirkko (Helsingin yliopisto, 2009)
    Holistic physics education in upper secondary level based on the optional course of physics Keywords: physics education, education, holistic, curriculum, world view, values A physics teacher s task is to put into practice all goals of the curriculum. Holistic physics education means in this research teaching, in which the school s common educational goals and the goals particular to the physics curriculum are taken into account. These involve knowledge, skills and personal value and attitude goals. Research task was to clarify how the educational goals involving student s values and attitudes can be carried out through the subject content of physics. How does the physics teacher communicate the modern world view through the content of the physics class? The goal of this research was to improve teaching, to find new points of view and to widen the perspective on how physics is taught. The teacher, who acted also as a researcher, planned and delivered an optional course where she could study the possibilities of holistic physics education. In 2001-2002 ten girls and two boys of the grade 9th class participated in that elective course. According to principles of action research the teacher-researcher reflected also on her own teaching action. Research method was content analysis that involved both analyzing student feedback, and relevant features of the teacher s knowledge, which are needed for planning and giving the physics lessons. In this research that means taking into account the subject matter knowledge, curriculum, didactic and the pedagogical content knowledge of the teacher. The didactic includes the knowledge of the learning process, students motivation, specific features of the physics didactics and the research of physics education. Among other things, the researcher constructed the contents of the curriculum and abstracted sentences as keywords, from which she drew a concept map. The concept maps, for instance, the map of educational goals and the mapping of the physics essence, were tools for studying contents which are included in the holistic physics education. Moreover, conclusions were reached concerning the contents of physics domains by which these can be achieved. According to this research, the contents employing the holistic physics education is as follows: perception, the essence of science, the development of science, new research topics and interactions in physics. The starting point of teaching should be connected with the student s life experiences and the approach to teaching should be broadly relevant to those experiences. The teacher-researcher observed and analyzed the effects of the experimental physics course, through the lens of a holistic physics education. The students reported that the goals of holistic physics education were achieved in the course. The discourses of the students indicated that in the experimental course they could express their opinions and feelings and make proposals and evaluations. The students had experiences about chances to affect the content of the course, and they considered the philosophical physics course interesting, it awakened questions, increased their self-esteem and helped them to become more aware of their world views. The students analytic skills developed in the interactive learning environment. The physics teacher needs broad knowledge for planning his or her teaching, which is evaluated in this research from contents maps made for the tools of the teaching. In the holistic physics education the teacher needs an open and curious mind and skills for interaction in teaching. This research indicates the importance of teaching physics in developing attitudes and values beside substance of the physics in class environment. The different points of view concerning human beings life make it possible to construct the modern world view of the students and to develop analytic skills and the self-esteem and thus help them in learning. Overall and wide points of view also help to transfer knowledge to practice. Since such contents is not employed by teaching the physics included in the standard curriculum, supplement relevant teaching material that includes such topics are needed.
  • Kiuru, Paula (Helsingin yliopisto, 2005)
  • Valpola, Samu (Helsingin yliopisto, 2006)
    In Finland one of the most important current issues in the environmental management is the quality of surface waters. The increasing social importance of lakes and water systems has generated wide-ranging interest in lake restoration and management, concerning especially lakes suffering from eutrophication, but also from other environmental impacts. Most of the factors deteriorating the water quality in Finnish lakes are connected to human activities. Especially since the 1940's, the intensified farming practices and conduction of sewage waters from scattered settlements, cottages and industry have affected the lakes, which simultaneously have developed in to recreational areas for a growing number of people. Therefore, this study was focused on small lakes, which are human impacted, located close to settlement areas and have a significant value for local population. The aim of this thesis was to obtain information from lake sediment records for on-going lake restoration activities and to prove that a well planned, properly focused lake sediment study is an essential part of the work related to evaluation, target consideration and restoration of Finnish lakes. Altogether 11 lakes were studied. The study of Lake Kaljasjärvi was related to the gradual eutrophication of the lake. In lakes Ormajärvi, Suolijärvi, Lehee, Pyhäjärvi and Iso-Roine the main focus was on sediment mapping, as well as on the long term changes of the sedimentation, which were compared to Lake Pääjärvi. In Lake Hormajärvi the role of different kind of sedimentation environments in the eutrophication development of the lake's two basins were compared. Lake Orijärvi has not been eutrophied, but the ore exploitation and related acid main drainage from the catchment area have influenced the lake drastically and the changes caused by metal load were investigated. The twin lakes Etujärvi and Takajärvi are slightly eutrophied, but also suffer problems associated with the erosion of the substantial peat accumulations covering the fringe areas of the lakes. These peat accumulations are related to Holocene water level changes, which were investigated. The methods used were chosen case-specifically for each lake. In general, acoustic soundings of the lakes, detailed description of the nature of the sediment and determinations of the physical properties of the sediment, such as water content, loss on ignition and magnetic susceptibility were used, as was grain size analysis. A wide set of chemical analyses was also used. Diatom and chrysophycean cyst analyses were applied, and the diatom inferred total phosphorus content was reconstructed. The results of these studies prove, that the ideal lake sediment study, as a part of a lake management project, should be two-phased. In the first phase, thoroughgoing mapping of sedimentation patterns should be carried out by soundings and adequate corings. The actual sampling, based on the preliminary results, must include at least one long core from the main sedimentation basin for the determining the natural background state of the lake. The recent, artificially impacted development of the lake can then be determined by short-core and surface sediment studies. The sampling must be focused on the basis of the sediment mapping again, and it should represent all different sedimentation environments and bottom dynamic zones, considering the inlets and outlets, as well as the effects of possible point loaders of the lake. In practice, the budget of the lake management projects of is usually limited and only the most essential work and analyses can be carried out. The set of chemical and biological analyses and dating methods must therefore been thoroughly considered and adapted to the specific management problem. The results show also, that information obtained from a properly performed sediment study enhances the planning of the restoration, makes possible to define the target of the remediation activities and improves the cost-efficiency of the project.
  • Nela, Maria (Helsingin yliopisto, 2001)
  • Kubischta, Frauke (Helsingin yliopisto, 2011)
    The purpose of this study was to establish the palaeoenvironmental conditions during the late Quaternary in Murchisonfjorden, Nordaustlandet, based on foraminiferal assemblage compositions, and to determine the onset and termination of the Weichselian glaciations. The foraminiferal assemblage compositions were studied in marine sediments from three different archives, from sections next to the present shoreline in the Bay of Isvika, from a core in the Bay of Isvika and from a core from Lake Einstaken. OSL and AMS 14C age determinations were performed on samples from the three archives, and the results show deposition of marine sediments during ice-free periods of the Early Weichselian, the Middle Weichselian and the Late Weichselian, as well as during the Holocene in the investigated area. Marine sediments from the Early and Middle Weichselian were sampled from isostatically uplifted sections along the present shoreline.Sediments from the transition from the Late Weichselian to early Holocene time intervals were found in the bottom of the core from Lake Einstaken. Holocene sediments were investigated in the sections and in the core from the Bay of Isvika. The marine sediments from the sections are comprised of five benthic foraminiferal assemblages. The Early Weichselian is represented by two foraminiferal assemblages, the Middle Weichselian, the early and the late Holocene each by one. All five foraminiferal assemblages were deposited in glacier-distal shallow-water environments, which had a connection to the open ocean. Changes in the composition of the assemblages can be ascribed to differences in the bottom-water currents and changes in the salinity. The Middle Weichselian assemblage is of special importance, because it is the first foraminiferal assemblage to be described from this time interval from Svalbard. Four benthic foraminiferal assemblages were deposited shortly before the marine to lacustrine transition at the boundary between the Late Weichselian and Holocene in Lake Einstaken. The foraminiferal assemblages show a change from a high-arctic, normal marine shallow-water environment to an even shallower environment with highly fluctuating salinity. The analyses of the core from 100 m water depth in the Bay of Isvika resulted in the determination of four foraminiferal assemblages. These indicated changes from a glacier-proximal environment during deglaciation, to a more glacier-distal environment during the Early Holocene. This was followed by a period with a marked change to a considerably cooler environment and finally to a closed fjord environment in the middle and late Holocene times. Additional sedimentological analyses of the marine and glacially derived sediments from the uplifted sections, as well as observations of multiple striae on the bedrock, observations of deeply weathered bedrock and findings of tills interlayered with marine sediments complete the investigations in the study area. They indicate weak glacial erosion in the study area. It can be concluded that marine deposition occurred in the investigated area during three time intervals in the Weichselian and during most of the Holocene. The foraminiferal assemblages in the Holocene are characterized by a transition from glacier-proximal to glacier-distal faunas. The palaeogeographical change from an open fjord to a closed fjord environment is a result of the isostatic uplift of the area after the LGM and is clearly reflected in the foraminiferal assemblages. Another influencing factor on the foraminiferal assemblage composition are changes in the inflow of warmer Atlantic waters to the study area.
  • Kurhila, Matti (Helsingin yliopisto, 2011)
    Leucogranite magmatism occurred in southern Finland during the later stages of the Paleoproterozoic Svecofennian orogeny. The leucogranites are considered to have formed from pre-existing crustal rocks that have undergone anatexis in the extensional stage of the orogeny, following continental collision and resultant crustal thickening. The leucogranites have been studied in the field using petrographic and mineralogical methods, elemental and isotope geochemistry on whole rocks and minerals, and U-Pb geochronology. On outcrop scale, these granites typically form heterogeneous, layered, sheet-like bodies that migmatize their country rocks. All of the leucogranites are peraluminous and rich in SiO2, but otherwise display significant geochemical variation. Their Nd isotope composition ranges from fairly juvenile to very unradiogenic, and the Hf isotope composition of their zircon shows a varying degree of mixing in the source, the zircon populations becoming more heterogeneous and generally less radiogenic towards the east. The leucogranites have been dated using U-Pb isotopic analyses, utilizing thermal ionization mass spectrometry, secondary ion mass spectrometry, and laser ablation multicollector ICP mass spectrometry on zircon and monazite. The results show that the granites were emplaced between 1.85 Ga and 1.79 Ga, which is a considerably longer period than has traditionally been perceived for these rocks. The rocks tend to become younger towards the east. Single crystal data also display a wide array of inherited zircons, especially in the eastern part of the leucogranite belt. The most common inherited age groups are ~2.8 2.5 Ga, ~2.1 2.1 Ga, and ~1.9 Ga. Magmatic zircon and monazite usually record similar ages for any one sample.Thermobarometric calculations indicate that the leucogranites in the Veikkola area of southcentral Finland were formed from relatively low-temperature melts, and emplaced at 17-25 km depth, i.e. at mid-crustal level. It is likely that these conditions apply to the Svecofennian leucogranites in general. Large differences in the Hf and Nd isotope compositions, emplacement ages, and distributions of inherited zircon ages show that these granites were formed from different types of source rocks, which probably included both sedimentary and igneous rocks.
  • Yliheikkilä, Katariina (Helsingin yliopisto, 2006)
    Polyethene, polyacrylates and polymethyl acrylates are versatile materials that find wide variety of applications in several areas. Therefore, polymerization of ethene, acrylates and methacrylates has achieved a lot attention during past years. Numbers of metal catalysts have been introduced in order to control the polymerization and to produce tailored polymer structures. Herein an overview on the possible polymerization pathways for ethene, acrylates and methacrylates is presented. In this thesis iron(II) and cobalt(II) complexes bearing tri- and tetradentate nitrogen ligands were synthesized and studied in the polymerization of tertbutyl acrylate (tBA) and methyl methacrylate (MMA). Complexes are activated with methylaluminoxane (MAO) before they form active combinations for polymerization reactions. The effect of reaction conditions, i.e. monomer concentration, reaction time, temperature, MAO to metal ratio, on activity and polymer properties were investigated. The described polymerization system enables mild reaction conditions, the possibility to tailor molar mass of the produced polymers and provides good control over the polymerization. Moreover, the polymerization of MMA in the presence of iron(II) complex with tetradentate nitrogen ligands under conditions of atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP) was studied. Several manganese(II) complexes were studied in the ethene polymerization with combinatorial methods and new active catalysts were found. These complexes were also studied in acrylate and methacrylate polymerizations after MAO activation and converted into the corresponding alkyl (methyl or benzyl) derivatives. Combinatorial methods were introduced to discover aluminum alkyl complexes for the polymerization of acrylates and methacrylates. Various combinations of aluminum alkyls and ligands, including phosphines, salicylaldimines and nitrogen donor ligands, were prepared in situ and utilized to initiate the polymerization of tBA. Phosphine ligands were found to be the most active and the polymerization MMA was studied with these active combinations. In addition, a plausible polymerization mechanism for MMA based on ESI-MS, 1H and 13C NMR is proposed.
  • Ikonen, Marko (Helsingin yliopisto, 2011)
    The history of software development in a somewhat systematical way has been performed for half a century. Despite this time period, serious failures in software development projects still occur. The pertinent mission of software project management is to continuously achieve more and more successful projects. The application of agile software methods and more recently the integration of Lean practices contribute to this trend of continuous improvement in the software industry. One such area warranting proper empirical evidence is the operational efficiency of projects. In the field of software development, Kanban as a process management method has gained momentum recently, mostly due to its linkages to Lean thinking. However, only a few empirical studies investigate the impacts of Kanban on projects in that particular area. The aim of this doctoral thesis is to improve the understanding of how Kanban impacts on software projects. The research is carried out in the area of Lean thinking, which contains a variety of concepts including Kanban. This article-type thesis conducts a set of case studies expanded with the research strategy of quasi-controlled experiment. The data-gathering techniques of interviews, questionnaires, and different types of observations are used to study the case projects, and thereby to understand the impacts of Kanban on software development projects. The research papers of the thesis are refereed, international journal and conference publications. The results highlight new findings regarding the application of Kanban in the software context. The key findings of the thesis suggest that Kanban is applicable to software development. Despite its several benefits reported in this thesis, the empirical evidence implies that Kanban is not all-encompassing but requires additional practices to keep development projects performing appropriately. Implications for research are given, as well. In addition to these findings, the thesis contributes in the area of plan-driven software development by suggesting implications both for research and practitioners. As a conclusion, Kanban can benefit software development projects but additional practices would increase its potential for the projects.