Restorative justice seeks to repair harm by bringing together those involved in and affected by an offense in order to address their needs and impose obligations. However, the field of restorative justice has become increasingly undefined due to its expansion over the last couple of decades. Moreover, existing empirical research on restorative justice predominantly evaluates its effectiveness and then grounds its finding in restorative justice theory. This thesis uses interviews and participant observation to demonstrate the connection between the theory and practice of restorative justice group and family conferences and the tradition of social theory. I argue that restorative justice reflects the theories of Emile Durkheim, George Herbert Mead, Jürgen Habermas, and Ivan Illich. Threads of their theories are evident in how the structure of restorative justice conferences creates the conditions for the process of communication to occur, which then facilitates the realization of abstract values and strengthens community. By explaining the role of this implicit yet significant logic, I locate restorative justice within a broad historical process of social theory to illustrate its potential foundations.
Linguistic anthropologists argue that communicative abilities of a foreign language can only be acquired when the learner understands the culture that is entwined within the language. Previous research has found international students to face difficulties with linguistic, social, and cultural barriers when living abroad in the United States. A mixed methods research was conducted in two parts in order to study not only the English language curriculum through which East Asian students have acquired English language skills, but also their experiences in communicating with native English speakers. Part I consisted of a personal narrative that explored the cultural elements associated with learning additional languages. Part II included findings from non-experimental quantitative data gathered through survey questionnaires and ethnographically grounded qualitative data found through semi-structured interviews. Participants consisted of ten university students in Seoul, South Korea who had either little or no experience living in an English-speaking country and ten East Asian international students at Colorado College, a private liberal arts college in the United States. Although the quantitative data did not present significant findings due to the small number of participants, contrastable mean responses between the Korean university and Colorado College students were supported by findings of the interviews and the review of literature. In addition, the interview data presented ten themes of common responses found among the participants. The main findings revealed that nearly all participants were dissatisfied with their communicative abilities and some even lacked communicative confidence due to an exam-oriented, grammatical focus in the English language curriculum of their home countries. Additionally, the participants suggested a stronger focus on speaking and cultural lessons in order to promote a greater communicative and cultural competence and thus, improve their confidence to socially interact with native English speakers.
This article reports on the design and findings of a project concerning the feasibility of a collaborative model to benchmark the marketing of electronic resources in institutions of higher education. This international project gathered 100 libraries to move in lockstep through the process of a typical marketing cycle that included running a brief marketing campaign and reporting findings to each other. The findings show good reasons and strong support for this kind of model.