Käyttäytymistieteellinen tiedekunta


Recent Submissions

  • Alafuzoff, Aleksander (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    Background. Birth asphyxia is a pathological state that occurs if fetal gas exchange is disrupted for an extended period of time during delivery. Prolonged birth asphyxia causes brain damage and can even lead to death, but which in mild and moderate cases causes motor and cognitive disability. One of the brain regions often damaged is the hippocampus, which is known to play a major role in memory processing. Thus, damage to the hippocampus may in part explain the long-term cognitive consequences of birth asphyxia. In the neonatal brain hippocampal network activity is discontinuous, dominated by sharp waves and oscillatory bouts, of which the former are thought to be important for memory consolidation in the adult brain. Later in development sharp waves exhibit fast oscillations called ripples that organise hippocampal activity after learning. The aim of this thesis was to establish how sharp wave signalling in the neonatal hippocampus is affected by birth asphyxia. Methods. A rat model developed at the Laboratory of Neurobiology, University of Helsinki, was used to study birth asphyxia and a putative therapeutic strategy. Neonatal rat pups aged 5-8 days were used in the study. These animals were randomly assigned to one of four experimental groups: naïve control, sham control, asphyxia, and graded restoration of normocapnia. Hippocampal network activity was measured in vivo under urethane anaesthesia using local field potential (LFP) recordings 24 hours after the asphyxic insult. Sharp waves were detected and analysed in terms of event counts, timing, size, shape and ripple properties. Results and conclusions. After asphyxia, sharp waves occurred more frequently within clusters than in isolation. In addition, sharp wave ripples were detected for the first time during early neonatal development. In asphyxiated animals, the number and magnitude of detected ripples was statistically significantly decreased. Interestingly, animals that underwent graded restoration of normocapnia after asphyxia were no different from controls, suggesting a protective effect of the treatment. The abnormal SPW development after birth asphyxia may form a mechanism contributing to the emergence of cognitive deficits
  • Örmä, Ida-Lotta (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    Objectives. The aim of the current study was to explore whether there is an association between phonological processing and neural auditory discrimination in 5–6-years-old children. Phonological processing is defined by the ability to recognize and modulate small units of words, like phonemes. Neural auditory discrimination is defined by brain’s automatic and preconscious ability to discriminate changes in auditory stimuli. Both phonological processing and neural auditory discrimination are important factors in the language development and deficits in those factors are known to be related to many language impairments. Single studies have reported an association between phonological processing and neural auditory discrimination but this theme is not well studied. In addition to group differences, we also studied differences in the ability to discriminate different sound deviants. Methods. The sample consisted of 38 children, whose mean age was 5 years and 10 months. The study was executed by dividing children into two groups by Nepsy-II phonological processing scores and comparing these two groups with the amplitudes of the brain’s mismatch negativities (MMN) and late discriminative negativities (LDN). The comparison was made with repeated measures analysis of variance. Brain’s event-related potentials were recorded with multifeature-paradigm in which the stimuli were modulated by vowel, consonant, duration of the vowel, intensity and frequency. Results and conclusions. The results of this current study demonstrate that differences in the phonological processing can be seen in the neural auditory discrimination. Both MMN- and LDN-potentials were stronger in those children, whose ability to process phonemes was better. In MMN-potentials the group difference was only seen in frequency, vowel and consonant deviants, whereas in LDN-potentials group differences were seen across all deviant types. In this study the phonological processing seems to be associated particularly to stronger LDN-potentials, which can provide information about the cognitive processes related to LDN-potentials. No previous studies about the association between phonological processing and LDN-potentials are known to be done.
  • Tuunanen, Pirjo (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    Tiivistelmä – Abstrakt – Abstract This study examines how Day Care personnel can develop together they work and skills with this research project. This study was part of VKK-Metros research project 2009. The research included inquiries in all research day cares and in addition there was a discussion the in the beginning and in the end of process. The development process was successful. Personnel.s professional.s skills increased and they got new methods and ways to do they work. The day care personnel discussed and thought more professional subjects than before. The collaboration increased also among day care personnel. Avainsanat – Nyckelord – Keywords Day care, Early Childhood Education, personnel, personnels skills develop
  • Suni, Mari (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    Background and aims: Aphasia is commonly associated with deficits in all linguistic modalities.In mild, chronic aphasia syndromes difficulties in reading can interfere with tasks of everyday life. The rehabilitation of reading difficulties caused by a general linguistic deficit is closely related to the rehabilitation of spoken language, especially in the early stages. Partly due to the limited resources granted to speech therapy, rehabilitation seldom proceeds to reading in its own right. Research has shown that rehabilitation of reading as such can however be beneficial to more general linguistic abilities. In this study, the quality and responsiveness to treatment of a sublexical reading deficit related to mild, chronic conduction aphasia were examined. The aim was to investigate, whether a sublexical therapy method and in particular text-level reading practice were effective in enhancing the fluency of reading or more general linguistic abilities. Methods: A 37-year-old man with mild, chronic conduction aphasia and resulting phonological alexia participated in the study. The intervention consisted of 17 training sessions (total of40 hours) of speech therapy, during which independent practice of repetitive reading that lasted for 11 weeks was started. Therapy consisted of phonological and word-level repetition and naming tasks combining the auditive and written modalities. Data consisted of linguistic tasks collected before, during and after the practice period. The effects of the intervention were evaluated by examining oral reading speed and accuracy of connected text and nonwords. More general phonological and linguistic abilities were examined through auditive repetition and auditive memory tasks. Results and discussion: The reading deficit reflected a more general linguistic difficulty that seemed to originate in auditive processing. Difficulties in reading seemed to arise from weakened phonological activation of word forms. No clinically significant changes were observed after the rehabilitation period. Still, positive changes were noted that imply the rehabilitation can be efficient when carried out through a longer period. Reading speed increased in nonword reading task, but speed of reading connected text increased steadily through the whole study period. A positive change in oral reading speed was observed in first readings of practice texts that might imply a more consistent enhancement during a longer training interval. No rehabilitative effect was apparent in auditive repetition or auditive memory , even though individual tasks improved. The results of this case study imply that repetitive reading ought to be further investigated as a reading rehabilitation method for persons with mild phonological reading deficits. Considering more general phonological rehabilitation, systematic methods could enhance the effectiveness of practice.
  • Malinen, Mari (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    Objectives. There is only scarce research based information on sustainable development (SD) when it comes to class teachers actions and teaching. The aim of this study was to investigate how class teachers take into account education of sustainable development (ESD) and different angles of sustainable development in their actions and teaching. Another aim of this study was to investigate if there is a correlation between teachers SD based actions and SD based teaching and if there are differences in demographic factors (age, sex, location) in how teachers implement ESD. Differences between schools in how teachers implement ESD were also investigated in this study. Methods. The survey data was part of SEED research (Sustainable Food Education for Self-Efficacy Development) which is supported by the Academy of Finland. The aim of the SEED-project is to investigate and support sustainable development in Finnish basic education by charting teachers and pupils actions in terms of sustainable development. PASW 18 was utilized in the quantitative analysis of the survey questionnaires. The nationwide survey was conducted in the spring of 2010 and it was answered by 231 class teachers from 80 different schools. Results and conclusions. The results of the study indicate that class teachers in Finland adhere to sus-tainable development in their actions and teaching on a mediocre level. Different angles of sustainable development are not in balance in teachers actions and teaching, as social and ecological angles are highlighted whereas the economical angle is the least utilized and recognized. Teachers who adhere to sustainable development in their actions don’t take the different angles of sustainable development into account in their teaching very well. The study found that teachers who worked in the cities and teachers who represented the older age group take sustainable development into account the most. Men take into account the economical angle of sustainable development more than women whereas women take more into account the ecological and social angles of sustainable development. There were significant differences between schools in how they take sustainable development into account in teachers actions and teaching.
  • Silvanto, Silja (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    Tiivistelmä - Referat – Abstract The aim of this study was to look into university students’ expectancies and achievement strategies regarding their domain studies and how they develop through the first three years of academic studies. The study also examines the differences of the development of these components between five academic domains. According to previously formulated theories (Carver, Scheier & Segerstrom, 2010; Eccles & Wigfield, 1983; Nurmi & Salmela-Aro, 1998), these aspects play an important role in motivation and learning in academic related context. In this study the three year trajectories were especially of interest, as they might offer some new insight and also present ideas for further research regarding motivation and success in academic education. This study started as a part of RYM Indoor Environment Program (TEKES, 2011-2015) and continued as a part of Mind the Gap Between Digital Natives and Educational Practices -project (Academy of Finland’s Human Mind program, 2013-2016). The participants in the first year were 498 students from two different universities. In the three-year follow-up, 215 of these students continued to participate. Five disciplines were presented in the study; teacher education, chemistry, law, theology and engineering. The study was conducted as a quantitative research and the data was collected by a self-report questionnaire over three years’ period and by accumulation of credits retrieved from universities’ records. The five studied disciplines seem to start their studies in equivalent position – the first academic year appears to be perceived as positive and valuable, with low levels of task-avoidance, although some differences were found in domain value. When proceeding to second academic year, some differing trajectories between disciplines were recognized. While some domains’ students seem to value their studies, other domains’ students showed to decrease in the level of perceived domain value. Positively, optimism proved to increase in all disciplines between first and second year as well as between second and third year. However, task-avoidance, which has been found to predict poor academic performance and low satisfaction (Nurmi et al. 2003), showed to remain stable throughout the three years. Educational implications of these trajectories are also discussed in this study.
  • Kosonen, Sanna (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    Tiivistelmä – Abstrakt – Abstract Background and aims. The environment has a significant influence on a child’s language acquisition. The interaction styles of the adults in a child’s everyday environment influence also on a child’s possibilities to have an active role in interaction. If a child’s language develops atypically, the role of adults’ interaction styles is even more significant. Adults often seem to dominate the interaction in dyads of adults and young children. This kind of asymmetry seems to be more persistent when children have atypical language development. AAC is one way to provide children with language disorders a way to communicate more equally and thus learn a more active role in interaction. The purpose of this study is to examine the interaction between a child with delayed language development and his close adults. Also the study observes the experiences of the AAC use in everyday life by a brief interview. Methods. A 2 years 7 months old child, Leo, participated this study. Leo’s language development was delayed. Leo had received speech therapy intervention concentrating on the AAC use. The data of the study consists of face-to-face interaction situations between Leo and his mother, and Leo and his kindergarten teacher. Interaction situations were videotaped. Additionally the mother and the kindergarten teacher were interviewed. The interaction situations were analysed by counting the number of turns of each participant. Within turns the communication moves, communicative functions and the communication modes were analysed. Results and discussion. The results revealed that Leo was an active interaction partner using various communicative functions and modes of communication. The interaction between both dyads was quite symmetric. Leo made even a bit more initiations than his mother. However, the kindergarten teacher had a bit more dominant role in the interaction, having a bit more turns and initiations than Leo. The results of this study does not entirely support the results of previous studies in which adults were dominating the interaction in dyads of adults and young children. The one-to-one interaction situations of this study supported well reciprocal communication. Also the adults encouraged Leo to take an active role in the interaction. As being a case study the results cannot be generalised. There are relative few studies examining interaction of Finnish adult-child-dyads. More research is needed to examine general features as well as individual variation of the interaction between a child and their close adults.
  • Eveliina, Vauhkonen (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    Work has become more and more expertised and complex, leading to a situation where best knowledge of the issues is dispersed wider in the organization. Implementation of work has changed towards more versatile, emphasazing individual’s agency at work and learning. Thereby, the transition of power and responsibility for each employee is seen as important. These changes at work requires examining work-based learning in a new light. Need for this research arose from organizational change towards self-directing operating model. This demands to think individual’s role and responsibility about their own learning and development. Research problem consisted of how experts learn in their work and what is the role of agency in learning. Results will help to better understand the development of organizational knowledge processes and expert work. Theoretical framework examines key theoretical concepts of learning, understanding impact of changes in the work and agency’s role for learning. The study was conducted using a theme interview for ten employees, who operate in hybrid expertise roles in the organization. The data was collected at the turn of the year 2015-2016 and analyzed with content analysis. The units of analysis consisted from the nature of the job, learning practices and agency in professional development. The results showed that the working environment has a strong orientation to learning and in-formal learning played an important role. In addition, the results showed a different agency in relation to professional development. Others defined their learning objectives very actively and others were more adjusted to the possibilities offered by the organisation. Learning, however, was more individual than shared. The results demonstrate the need to modify the learning environment in the way it takes into account the different individuals from the perspective of learning. In practice, change to self-directing model requires that everyone takes responsibility to de-fine the shared and individual learning needs. As a conclusion the organization should provide a wide range of learning and influence channels, to support both individual and shared agency in learning and professional development.
  • Hietanen, Lea (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    Aims. The main objective of this research was to find out what kind of factors are related to agency of young people in parental home contex. This research explored assets from householdings perspective in everyday living. Continuous changes in the internal everyday householding and external operational enviroments challanges agency of young people. Young people also facing the chancing and growing expectations and demands. The research motive from the household teacher's perspective was to find out what kind of viewpoints can be found from everyday householding that can be use for recognizing and strengthening the relationship between the agency of young people and householding. Theoretical viewpoints for this research were atteches to dynamics of family members home been and work, the modalites of agency and positive psychology research. Research questions were: 1. Which agency building factors are resulting from home constructing activity? 2. What kind of tensions and conclusions can be found from householding activities? 3. What the young person has learned in householding classes and how this is present in householding activities? Methods. The research was carried out as a qualitative research. Research material was gathered from stories received by email. The material consisted of written stories about young people's participation in everyday living. These stories were written by parents who have or have had upper comprehensive school aged children living in their home. Ten stories were received. Results and conclusions. Relationship between object and subject of home constructing activity were seen as building factors for agency. Tensions and strenghts between young and parent were seen to be resolution from young peoples participation in home. Tensions and conclusions were themed by (1) changes in home operation model, (2) parents attitude and role, (3) youngs attitude and role and (4) things guiding individuality and object. External communities, specially youngs relationships with peers and household teaching were seen to support young agency in home. Teaching the meanings to every day living aroust from the research material. Parents descriped this as discussion and interaction with the young and it was seen as important factor for building agency.
  • Hiltunen, Laura (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    In our society values and ideals are transferred partly by teachers and schools. The basic values of teaching are based on the definitions of the values in the Finnish national curriculum. Values can be transferred trough the behaviour of the teacher and the practices of the school. The transmission of values or the identification of one's own values are not always conscious. Especially the young people living in the modern media society are easily exposed to the environments information overload that contains discourses of values and ideals. Influencing the value transferring contents of media is not easy but influencing the values transferred by the schools and teachers is possible. It is important to study teachers and future teachers conceptions of values and ideals, so that we are able to have a better understanding of the transmission of values in schools. The aim of this study is to determine the internal and external values and ideals of the teacher students. Ideals were examined from the perspective of values. The study involved 22 teacher students who were either subject teachers or class teachers. The data were collected by e-form in the spring of 2015. The form contained three image interpretation assignments. Respondents were asked to search for pictures in accordance with the assignment and interpret them via three questions. The data consisted 66 images and 66 image interpretations. The data was analysed by content analysis and semiotic analysis. The content analysis was based on Schwartz value theory and the pictures were analysed with the concepts of semiotic theory. Through the text data I was able to determine student teachers internal values. Their internal values centered on social, aesthetic, security and self-direction values. The external values determined from the image data emphasized the importance of youth, beauty, health and slenderness. It seems that the ideals and values of teacher students are similar than the values of the Finnish people in general but differ from the base values of the Finnish national curriculum. The results of the study can be used when planning teaching in schools. It is important to acknowledge that teachers’ values and ideals differ from the Finnish national curriculum even though the values in the curriculum are meant to be the base of learning.
  • Asplund, Meri (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    Aim: Social interaction is the basis for experiencing life and knowing the fact that one even exists. For people with speech impairments the opportunities to be heard and to participate in social interaction depends greatly their communication partner’s skills to act as a competent and a guiding partner. In this study, the term communication partner refers to staff working with people with speech impairments. Staff interaction skills will largely depend on the knowledge, skills and attitudes that they have embraced during their education, work and life experience. The purpose of this study was to gather and describe staff observations of interaction when the OIVA-interaction model applied in community. The aim of this study was to provide information about the elements of a successful interaction, as well as to illustrate the factors which are key in developing interaction skills in communities that provide services for people with severe speech impairments. Methods: The research data for this study were collected by the Communication and Technology Center of the Finnish Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (Tikoteekki). The data consisted of 38 OIVA-interaction model summary forms, which were gathered during the period of 2010-2013 from the communities that provide services for people with severe speech impairments and whom participated in the OIVA-interaction models. Summary forms were filled in by the actual OIVA-counselors. The data were analyzed applying the Grounded Theory method. Results and conclusion: The core category of collaborative interaction learning became the combining theme for the entire data set. The core category consisted of three main categories: community and learning, competent partner and customer's quality of life. The core category describes the collaborative way of working, as well as socioconstructive and experiential learning to improve staff communication skills. Collaborative working practices helped staff to identify the key elements of interaction and strengthen the competent partnership by utilizing these elements. Well-functioning community and reflecting on learning among the members of the community played a key role when adopting new interaction skills. Staff as a competent partner made it possible for their customers to have the best possible quality of life regarding interaction.
  • Wahlberg, Ulrika (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    This study is an analysis of the dwelling of an old house and unfolding it's ontology. The interpretation is mainly built on observations as well as interviews with inhabitants. The study is a process of interpretation driven also by the impressions on the phenomena delivered by visual arts, literature and media as well as by the researcher’s own interpretations and experiences. What is the ontology of the dwelling of an old house, is a question posed in this study. A phenomenological analysis is the basis of the research. The method chosen means that the analysis is built on the phenomena itself and its unfolding. The research is first and foremost interested in the experience associated with the dwelling of an old house rather than its appearance. The study possesses features of a case study, as its main research material is composed of three cases: two open group discussions and an open interview. The analysis is also influenced by observation and personal reflection. The study is transdisciplinary and conveys a natural discourse between interpretations rising from different sciences. In addition to home economics, the study of arts and aesthetics are central to this dialogue. The goal is to generate new viewpoints to home economics and to give stimulus to the other sciences involved in the dialogue. The study questions within the sciences. In this study the transdisciplinary approach strives at returning new kinds of interpretations on the phenomena of dwelling, which in turn advances and builds the theoretical foundation and vision of home economics as well as probes in to the future. The analysis of the dwelling of an old house is a process of interpretation, which crystallizes as an idea of the dwelling of an old house as a performance. The dwelling of an old house is an overall aesthetic experience that includes motion, unpredictability and interaction. The metaphor of a performance highlights the dynamism and uniqueness of the dwelling.
  • Rinta-Kanto, Jenni (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    Background: Development of cognitive abilities involves both environmental and genetic factors. Childhood socioeconomic status (SES) associates with cognitive abilities later in life; however there is only little research on the interaction of SES and genes on cognitive ability. Specific genomic loci associating with cognitive abilities are scarce and potential candidates might be genetic variants linked with Alzheimer’s disease such as APOE ε4 isomorph and rs405509 located in the APOE promoter region. I studied how childhood SES and APOE ε4 and rs405509 and their interactions associate with cognitive abilities in late adulthood in the Helsinki Birth Cohort Study (HBCS) sample. Methods: The participants of this study consisted of 607 men belonging to the HBCS who were born in Helsinki, Finland between 1934 and 1944. They participated in the test for general cognitive abilities at the average age of 68, and who were successfully genotyped. Associations and interactions of childhood SES, APOE and rs405509 on cognitive ability were studied. Results and conclusions: Lower childhood SES associated with lower verbal subscale score and total score. APOE ε4 was not independently associated with cognitive abilities. The number of G-alleles in rs405509 associated with lower verbal subscale score and total score when adjusted for age, but no longer after adjusting for adulthood SES. Interactions of rs405509 and childhood SES were not associated with cognitive ability. Socioeconomically less advantaged childhood environment has long-term consequences on cognitive abilities, and the effects last until late adulthood. The study suggests that rs405509 G-allele might have an independent effect on cognitive ability before the outset of Alzheimer’s disease, but the results require further replication with larger sample size.
  • Issabeigloo, Babak (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    The goal of this thesis is to create an anti-bullying model with primary school children. The core idea of the model is to narrow the inequality between the bully and his victim and to encourage students to stand up for themselves when facing bullying. Previous research has offered similar anti-bullying models but the model I have developed, The Verbal Self-Defence Model, differs from other approaches especially due to its humoristic nature. Because the humoristic approach to bullying has not been previously studied, I chose Grounded Theory as my method. I carried out a standardised preparatory questionnaire to all sixth graders in a school in Helsinki of which a group of 15 students were selected to the group interviews. I conducted the group interviews in three parts, each of which lasted 45 minutes. I collected the data by open sampling after which I studied the literature on the subject while simultaneously analysing the interviews. In the interviews the sixth graders and I investigated what kinds of humoristic answers can be used in bullying situations. We ended up with five categories after which the amount of categories reached its saturation point. One thing the interviews revealed was that a part of students do not talk back to their bullies because they do not want to give the bully the satisfaction by being provoked. The literature review revealed that The Verbal Self-Defence Model includes elements from three different models in which the ability of the victim to stand up for himself is strengthened yet offering something new due to its humoristic approach. From the literature I also found support for my hypothesis that witty comments and humour might calm the bully by changing the balance of power and the frame of interpretation. The five categories of verbal self-defence are: comeback, self-defence, laughing at yourself, sarcasm and random comeback. Students can apply these categories when practicing the skills of humorous self-defence. These skills can be practiced, starting from the first grade, by playing the four adaptations of the serving game, each having a different difficulty level. Before the serving game, a five-point bulletin is presented to the children whose aim is to prevent the forming of inequality of power between students.
  • Virrankari, Daria (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    Teaching historical thinking in elementary school has been part of the curriculum since 1994. In this study historical thinking is seen as in the current curriculum (OPS 2004) as source skills, understanding time, cause and effect and historical empathy. Although teaching historical thinking has been part of the curriculum for 20 years, its teaching in elementary school has been scarce. The research problem is why historical thinking is not taught as it stands in the curriculum. In this study I survey four class teacher’s thoughts about historical thinking in their teaching and how the teachers’ vision of history as a school subject affects their teaching of historical thinking. I also examine how teaching materials used by teachers affect the teaching of historical thinking and compare the teachers’ visions to research literature on the subject. Study was executed as a semi-structured thematic interview. During the spring of 2015 I interviewed four history teaching class teachers in Southern and Northern Finland. Interviewees were selected so that they would differ from one another for example by their background, teaching experience and alma mater. Interviews were recorded with the acceptance of the interviewees and transcribed for analysis. The data was analyzed using textual analysis and by comparing it to existing surveys. The study shows that the teachers’ vision of history is outdated; ergo it is not in line with the targets set by the current curriculum. In the teachers’ thoughts knowing history was seen as remembering important things and explaining the present through the past. The study also suggests that the teachers are not fully aware what is meant by historical thinking. It revealed that the teaching of history, at least in the eyes of the four teachers surveyed, leans a lot on history schoolbooks, which also respond badly to aims set by the curriculum.