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What does James Spader like?

James Spader likes helping young people get into education, employment, or training!

"The early bird ... preventing young people from becoming a NEET statistic"
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Executive summary NEETs are defined as those not in education, employment, or training. They are individuals struggling to make the transition through economic inactivity.
Defining NEETs Neethood is very high in the years after young people leave full-time education. Neets who are unemployed tend to transition to work, although typically low-skilled work without training, and inactive Neets are more likely to return to education. For 5%, this separation from work or education can last for 2+ years.
Policy Neets are associated with long-term low wages, frequent worklessness, and low levels of well-being. The most marginal workers struggle most in hard times. Children from workless families are more likely to be out of work than those from working families.
Categories of interventions
  • Financial payments - positive results, most rigorous evaluation. Payments are tied to participation, attendance, and performance
  • Vocational education and training - developments behind persuasive training is too recent for analysis of long-term impacts
  • Remedial classes - poorly evaluated, measuring outcomes is also difficult as the programs cater to students with multiple social, behavioral, and physiological problems
  • Career guidance and counseling - weak and short-lived impacts, significant problems even with interventions
  • Recovery training programs - positive findings, improved education achievement and qualifications which resulted in higher earnings. However, these programs are also very expensive
  • Community programs - Few have been evaluated, although the intervention is innovative and engaging with its holistic approach. They try multiple initiatives to address the multi-dimensional causes of social problems.
Key recommendations The main issue is that many NEETs have little or no contact with existing institutions as they do not qualify for support. By the time they enter the formal benefits system, the damage may already be done. Outcomes should be based on preventing NEEThood and increasing skills.
  • Alternatives to the standard academic route as people with lower grades are not highly regarded by employers. Apprenticeships with on-the-job training and exposure to the world of work is fundamental
  • Financial incentives seem to be the most effective way of engaging at-risk individuals
  • Attachment to the labor market as work experience is key
  • Neets often lack basic numeracy and literacy skills

Neets - Part 1 - defining a Neet

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Part 1 Define the population of Neets, and identify the key target groups of young adults. Distinguish between those who are genuinely struggling to make school to work transitions, and those merely taking a gap year
Clues Those who are in temporary employment or education they may not persist with are also at risk
Clues Groups 1 and 2 are unambiguous Neets, and group 3 are possible Neets.
  1. Inactive with no participation in education or training
  2. Unemployed with no participation in education or training
  3. Training/Part Time education with no employment
  4. Employed with no training
  5. Employed with training/Part time education
  6. Full Time education
Summary statistics
  • Unambiguous Neets - 8.31% of 16 year olds, 9.99% of 17 year olds, and 14.56% of 18 year olds
  • Full time education - 77.18% of 16 year olds, 67.17% of 17 year olds, and 44.25% of 18 year olds
part 1 viz
part 1 viz
Socio-economic background Individuals are split by decile, or into 10 equal groups. Decile 1 is the most economically poor, with parents who are in manual work, unemployment, live in government housing, or only have one parent. Decile 6+ represents the most advantaged 50% of the population.
  • Unambiguous Neets have poorer socio-economic backgrounds and worse GCSE attainment than other groups
  • A proportion of Neets have good family background and qualifications, indicating a gap year between educational phases
  • GCSE attainment is a strong predictor of economic activity
socioeconomic status of 16 year olds
socioeconomic status of 17 year olds
socioeconomic status of 18 year olds
One year on
    One-year-on destinations for unambiguous Neets are consistently poor. ~50% of the unemployed or inactive remain so one year on, and relatively few return to education
  • 16 year olds: 36.44% of unemployed are still so one year on, 30.97 of inactive
  • 17 year olds: 36.44% of unemployed are still so one year on, 40.97 of inactive
  • 18 year olds: 34.79% of unemployed are still so one year on, 41.89 of inactive
one year on
Movers and stayers The people leaving NEEThood are from better-off families and those who stay in NEEThood are from the most economically deprived. Those who enter the NEEThood from full time education have better family background, suggesting a gap year. People who become Neet by starting in employment without training at 16 are disproportionately from the most disadvantaged backgrounds and less well-educated groups, supporting the idea that young people with poor qualifications struggle to stay in work.
  • Of 18 year olds, 15.66% of those in decile 1 were Neet last year, and 48.08% where from decile 6+. One year later, 26.62% of Neets from decile 1 were still Neet, and 35.97% were still from decile 6+. However, from decile 1, only 3.83% moved from Neet to education, and 75.23% of those from decile 6+ moved to education.
  • Of those with 0 GCSES, 55.22% of Neets in decile 1 (47.95) were still so one year on. Whereas those with 5 GCSES, only 16.21% of them (35.81%) were still Neets one year on.
Conclusions A significant number of the youth population are Neet, even under the strictest definition. 50% of Neets are still Neets after one year. Outcomes among the deprived socio-economic groups and poor GCSE attainment are far worse than those from more advantaged economic and educational backgrounds.

Part 2 - markers of Neets

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Part 2 Identify the markers of individuals at risk of becoming Neets while they are young and still in school
14 Key characteristics
  1. Key Stage 2 (KS2) scores
  2. Whether English is first language of the child
  3. Whether the child has private tuition
  4. Whether the child lives in social housing
  5. Whether occupation class of either parent is "routine or semi-routine"
  6. Whether occupation class of either parent is "unemployed or never employed"
  7. Whether child has access to a computer with Internet in the home
  8. Whether a car is owned by the household
  9. In response to the question, "Will you stay in school after GCSEs" and the answer is no
  10. In response to the question, "Will you stay in school after GCSEs" and the answer is do not know
  11. Whether smokes cigarettes
  12. Whether has had any paid work of any form
  13. Whether has played truant in the last 12 months
  14. Whether has ever been excluded
Target Select people with low KS2 scores and with five or more of the key characteristics

Part 3: interventions aimed at Neet youth

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School review
  • Must have control group
  • Must have randomization
Intervention types Financial payments - direct initiative payments made to participants to stay in education or raise attendance or effort Financial incentives significantly affected student outcomes, especially for attendance and course completion rates.
  • Use monies to motivate better attainment, attendance, and course progression among students. Usually conditional on some combination of maintaining a minimum grade point average or regular attendance
  • Education has by nature, deferred benefits, so immediate money will help students stay in school
Vocational education and training - targeted places on vocational training programs for at-risk groups Vocational training widens the education access through vocational options. Job Corps has especially good outcomes with income level for participants. A similar program, Jobstart, was more modestly successful.
  • Internships, traineeships, and apprenticeships
Remedial classes - educational recovery programs for students struggling with regular educational classes Remedial classes provide intensive, targeted help for students with very low academic attainment. Generally, there is a lack of concrete data that these interventions work. Evaluations have been qualitative, incomplete, or not rigorous.
  • "Individualized learning plans" allow students flexible study patterns
  • Developing personal and social skills such as self-esteem, confidence, teamwork, and organizational skills
Careers guidance and counseling, recovery training programs - take youth away from their neighborhood and engage them in training and other support services Getting into the first rung on the job ladder is often cited as one of the greatest difficulties for young people in the job market. Although the success of career guidance programs is not yet clear due to long-term evaluation, initial results do seem promising. They are modest, but significant.
  • Increase knowledge of options available upon leaving school and "soft skills" required to access those options
  • Training of transferable skills such as study skills, time management, and teamwork
  • One-on-one sessions in which students would talk about course choices, career development, financial issues, and social and personal issues
Recovery training programs aim to help people who are at the end of their education and are at risk of Neethood, or have already dropped out. The intervention usually consists of a self-contained campus with individualized learning, tailored to the specific development needs of the student. The intensive programs usually have positive outcomes with respect to education (GED obtainment), job placement, and lessening of crime.
  • Work with local businesses to provide employment and work experience
  • Mix of classroom and on-the-job learning
Community organizations - initiatives driven by local community groups and parents to support at-risk young adults in high-crime, urban areas An inclusive and community-based approach is often taken by charities and philanthropic organizations. Funding is from local businesses, organizations, individuals, or governments. Staff people are often volunteers or local businesspeople. This inclusion of local groups makes for greater community responsibility, as well as expertise and experience. Community organizations often appreciate that the causes of Neethood are numerous and complex and need a holistic approach. Although their impacts on crime rates are in question, there are definite positive gains for GED attainment, college credits, and employment rates and earnings (when evaluation is done, which is usually not done).
  • Sports and leisure facilities allow young people constructive ways of spending time
  • Extra tuition and after school classes and clubs
  • Community workshops to address gang violence
  • Social enterprise for work experience for the unemployed

Part 4: key recommendations

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Key recommendations Programs that prevent Neethood are the key to improving the life chances of these individuals.
  1. We identify two groups of Neets: a narrow group of long-term, core Neets, and a wider group of the core Neets and recent Neet with poor grades
  2. We predict the Neet groups using the key 14 characteristics
  3. Simple sign-posting and information flows is not enough
    • Financial incentives are the most effective way of incentivizing individuals
    • Any attachment to labor market, as work experience or part-time work, is strongly associated with employment upon completion of formal education
    • Basic numeracy and literacy skills help Neets improve their education
    • Alternatives to the academic route are also important: apprenticeships are a popular option

Our stuff

it's Boston's most handsome lawyer
Part 5 Conclusion for our app
Clues Working it out
http://www.tomorrows-people.org.uk/ the Youth Challenge Fund
Keystone Development Trust (KDT)
Vital Regeneration (VR)
Harlem Childrens Zone (HCZ)
Go Create in Sunderland (Neet hot spot)
Clues Clue 2

James Spader likes design guidelines for making an app for emerging adults

"Design Guidelines for a Mobile App for Wellbeing of Emerging Adults"
it's Steff, scene 1
Summary The mental health of young people (age 18 - 29) may be improved through the use of mental health mobile apps, as young people use these technologies freely. This paper has a theory called, "positive psychology," which claims that everyone has a "signature strength," and if they strengthen it, they will increase happiness and decreases depression. Whatever, but they also show us the design guidelines of such an app, which is nice.
Emerging adulthood

Emerging adulthood is a uniquely 21st century phenomenon, characterized by young people, age 18-29, who experience delays and in committing to adult roles such as marriage and parenthood. They also have a many more choices for career/work and education. The scope and degree of identity exploration is greater than in most people due to the lack of social role constraints and few normative expectations. These people are common in industrialized countries such as America, Australia, the European countries, China, and Japan.

The three main areas of exploration are:

  • Love - seek a partner that suits them while adapting to how others evaluate them, leading to disappointment, disillusionment, and rejection
  • Work - emphasis on finding work interests while realizing their own capabilities lead to frequent changes in college majors and work occupations
  • Worldviews - highly instable identity explorations

Self-focused - Emerging adults are mostly free of obligations from long-term job, marriage, and parenthood. Most decisions are focused on self-development. They do not have the "other" as part of consideration.

In-between - They do not think of themselves as adults, yet as only relatively recently free from parental supervision, they have only started to define their own criteria of what constitutes adulthood.

Age of possibilities - Young people at this age have unusually high expectations in life, and believe they can make dramatic changes in and transform their lives, and that they will ultimately prevail. They consider less about the potential negative consequences of their actions.

Challenges - The process of identify construction in their roles, careers, and employment exacerbate anxiety and self-doubt, particularly if their peers question their endeavors. This struggle may resonate with them and cause poor psychological wellbeing such as depression, low self-esteem, and anger. In fact, emerging adulthood is a period of relatively high risk behaviors and mental health problems. Anxiety, substance abuse, depression, and similar affective disorders are commonly reported.

Positive psychology

Positive psychology promises to help young people develop complex skills and dispositions necessary to take charge of their lives, become socially competent, compassionate, and psychologically vigorous adults. Everyone possesses 6 virtues which are subsetted into character strengths, however we differ by the mastery we have over them. The top 5 strengths are called "signature strengths."

Regular use of ones signature strength promotes wellbeing. Intervention programs that improve and enhance specific character strengths enhance emerging adulthood, however, there has yet not been a mobile application that develops character strengths of an individual.

  • Wisdom and knowledge
    • Creativity - originality, ingenuity, practical intelligence
    • Curiosity - interests, novelty-seeking, openness to experience
    • Open mindedness - judgment, critical thinking
    • Love of learning
    • Perspective - wisdom
  • Courage
    • Bravery - valor
    • Persistence - perseverance, industriousness
    • Integrity - authenticity, honesty
    • Vitality - zest, enthusiasm, vigor, energy
  • Humanity
    • Love
    • Kindness - generosity, nurturance, care, compassion, altruistic love, "niceness"
    • Social intelligence - emotional intelligence, personal intelligence
  • Justice
    • Citizenship - social responsibility, loyalty, teamwork
    • Fairness
    • Leadership
  • Temperance
    • Forgiveness and mercy
    • Humility and modesty
    • Prudence
    • Self-regulation - self-control
  • Transcendence
    • Appreciation of beauty and excellence - awe, wonder, elevation
    • Gratitude
    • Hope - optimism, future-mindedness, future orientation
    • Humor - playfulness
    • Spirituality - religiousness, faith, purpose
Research framework Design Science Research (DSR) is motivated by using justificatory knowledge to solve real world problems through IT artifact construction.
  • Relevance cycle - identify the problem, translate to research requirements and acceptance criteria, field-testing
  • Rigor cycle - use theories from a knowledge base of appropriate theories, learn from existing artefacts and experts, each iteration updates knowledge base
  • Design cycle - go through iterative cycles of DSR through building and evaluating artefacts from input of previous cycles
Take away message Will be interesting to see the app derived from the design guidelines

James Spader likes a prototype app that can personalize ambient monitoring

"Towards personalised ambient monitoring of mental health via mobile technologies"
it's Steff, scene 1
Summary A personalized ambient monitor (PAM) can use technology to increase self-awareness of an activity which is linked to a mental state. It consists of:
  • a sensor network
  • an algorithm to process data
  • software to integrate the above two, usually this is used in a smartphone
Background Bipolar disorder (BD) is characterized by manic episodes and depressive episodes. Disruptions to daily routine like external events, like social interactions, may trigger an episode. In manic episodes, the person will often spontaneously visit new places. In depressive episodes, he will stay in one place for long periods of time due to reduced social activity. Adding in a time element would allow analysis on if the time of day matters for detecting episodes.
Experiment This was a control group pilot study. It had three men with no history of BD carry around a GPS-enabled smartphone for 3 to 4 weeks.
Clustering They used the clustering algorithm called Density-Based Algorithm for Discovering Clusters in Large Spatial Databases with Noise (DBSCAN). The aim was to find significant locations rather than map the journeys between them. Repeated use on the same dataset distinguishes between places that are constantly visited and those only occasionally visited.
Lessons learned The GPS receiver does not work indoors, and drains the battery. People also turned off their GPS when they did not want their phone to track them.

James Spader likes generative people living the redemption arc

"Narrating the Generative Life"
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Definition Generativity is the central psychosocial challenge of middle adulthood, and is defined as the adult concern for and commitment to promoting the growth and well-being for future generations. This can be done through parenting, teaching, mentoring, institutional involvement, and a range of other social behaviors. Midlife adults who make a positive contribution to the next generation more more likely to experience positive mental health.
Redemption narrative has 5 themes. highly generative adults may need to call upon a particular kind of personal story to support their generative efforts.
  1. Early advantage - protagonist is singled out for positive distinction
  2. Sensitivity to suffering - protagonist is moved by the suffering of other people, or by other social ills such as oppression or inequality
  3. Moral steadfastness - a strong moral framework guides the actions of the protagonist
  4. Redemption sequences - negative events have a later positive effect
  5. Prosocial goals - protagonist aims to improve the lives of other people or society in general
Interview structure The researchers asked the 157 black and white adults to recount their lives in 9 last segments and 3 imagined future segments:
  1. brief plot summary of the main chapters in the life story
  2. high point or happiest episode in life
  3. low point
  4. turning point
  5. positive early memory
  6. negative early memory
  7. vivid adult memory
  8. experience of wisdom
  9. religious or spiritual scene
  10. next chapter in life (future)
  11. dreams and hopes for the future
  12. anticipated project or avocation for the future
Results Generativity was measured using the Loyola Generativity Scale (LGS). Some interesting results:
  • Highly generative or varing and productive midlife adults are more likely than their less generative counterparts to use the 5-theme narrative strucutre
  • All 5 themes composing the redemptive-self prototype were positively associated with self-reported generativity
  • However, it does not make you happier: the 5 themes were not correlated with depression.
  • Generativity, public service motivation, and psychological well-being are intercorrelated
  • African-American adults scored higher than white adults on generativity, psychological well-being, and public service motivation
  • High association between sensitivity to suffering and prosocial goals
Comments A narrative identity is an internalized and evolving story of a life, but it is a subjective and psychological construct, not an truthful (veridical) rendering of the past. The story of a redemptive self, with a plot and characters and so on, is still a popular way for Americans to tell their own story.

James Spader likes the life narrative and how it affects middle-aged people

"The life narrative at midlife"
it's Steff, scene 1
Summary In 1982, Bertram Cohler thought of the narrative identity, the idea that you could use life narration to chart the psychological development of your life course. People use stories to integrate the reconstructed past and imagined future, which gives their lives a semblance of unity, purpose, and meaning. This also helps with the problem of generativity, which is the struggle to leave a postive legacy for the next generation.
History Here is an overview of the popularity of psychological theories.
  • 1950s: Erikson viewed humans as motivted agents who want to achieve developmentally appropriate goals
  • 1970s: People more into changing life circumstances instead of normative developmental timetables
  • 1980s: Bertram Cohler liked the stages, but thouthgt that human lives were also pretty complex, what with personal circumstances and social change and stuff. However, no matter what, people maintain a drive toward making meaning out of their lives. They perceive consistency and coherence through a narrative. But no one listed to him for 30 years.
  • 2000s: Roberts, Kuncel, Shiner, Caspi and Goldberg show that individual differences in dispositional traits are highly heritable and stable over the life course, and are connected to valued life outcomes such as mental health, well-being, delinquency and crime, occupational success, divorce, and longevity. Michaels said that life may not unfold as a neat developmental sequence, but motivated agents manage to cope and gain control over unpredictable challenges anyway.
The narrative identity is a life story that reconstrues the autobiographical past and imagines the future as a way to affirm threads of continuity and coherence in a life of a person. However, it is not until late adolesence and young adulthood that people work on their narrative identities in full force, and become a self-reflective autobiographical author.
Midlife crisis In the 1980s, the idea of a midlife crisis was new and cutting edge. A major theme in midlife crisis is an increasing awareness of the finitude of life.

"A major consequence of the attainment of the midlife is the recognition that more than half of one's life may already have been lived." - Bertram Cohler

Young adults usually use stories to attract potential mates or establish intimacy with others. Parents or older adults draw upon their own life stories to instruct their children in the ways of the world. Generativity is the concern for establishing, maintaining, and guiding the next generation.
Erikson life stage development:
  • Infancy: interpersonal trust v. mistrust
  • Adolescene: intimacy v. isolation
  • Middle age: generativity v. stagnation
Types of narratives The redemption story arc consists of:
  • Protagonist experiences an early blessing or advanage, like a special status in childhood, loving relationship with relative or teacher, skill or talent, or character trait that distinguishes him from others
  • Early experience of witnessing the suffering of others
  • protagonist repeatedly encounters setback, failures, losses, and disappointments
  • However, negative events are followed by positive outcomes, adversity overcome, sins washed away
  • In gratitude for the blessings and in response to the sufferings witnessed, the progonist resolves to leave a positive mark on the world, consolidating a commitment to future generations
Redemptive life stories act as a psycological resource -- it helps solve the problem of generativity because it justifies the hard work that living a generative life entails.
Other narratves include:
  • Atonement: sin to salvation, Protestant heritage and Massachusetts Bay Puritans
  • Upward social mobiity: the American dream
  • Liberation: social movements such as civil rights, womens rights, and gays and lesbian rights
  • Recovery: looking backwards to a golden age that beckons to be refound, recovery from illness, addiction, abuse. Examples: Oprah Winfrey

James Spader likes a web-based persuasive app for depression

"Managing depression through a behavior change support system without face-to-face therapy"
it's Steff, scene 1
Summary Depression is difficult to treat due to low motivation to reach experts, reluctance to discuss personal matters, lack of available professional services, distantly located health services, and high treatment costs and stigma. Human computer interaction (HC) and information systems (IS) can help, if augmented by cognitive behavior therapy (CBT). This paper uses Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), a derivative of CBT. This paper is about a web-based Behavior Change Support System (BCSS), which is an information system designed to form, alter, or reinforce attitudes, behaviors, or compliance without using deception, coercion or inducements.
  1. Hypothesis 1: Persuasive reminders help uses in task completion
  2. Hypothesis 2: Users would perceive persuasive reminders as a desirable feature
  3. Hypothesis 3: Virtual rehearsal helps users achieve improved self-confidence
  4. Hypothesis 4: Users with improved self-confidence continue to rehearse newly learned skills
  5. Hypothesis 5: The overall effect of the BCSS would lead to significant decrease in depression
  1. Hypothesis 1: No, did not help in task completion
  2. Hypothesis 2: Yes, people liked it
  3. Hypothesis 3: Yes, people said virtual rehearsal helped
  4. Hypothesis 4: Yes, people said they would practice in the future
  5. Hypothesis 5: BDI score dropped by 8 and 6 points for group 1 and 2
Experiment There were two groups:
  • Group 1: 19 participants got measurements, weekly rehearsal exercise, and weekly reminders via email
  • Group 2: 20 participants got the same thing as week 1, except no weekly reminders
What is virtual rehearsal anyway? I'm pretty sure it's when participants are taught mindfulness, acceptance skills, and complete value-based actions, whatever that means. They were guided by real therapists.
Outcomes were lots of things, but the one I am interested in is the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI-II).
Lessons learned Here are things future systems should do:
  • PSD advocates providing positive criticism/feedback, so it increases interactivity and user-system dialogue. Users expressed a desire for meaningful and positive feedback.
  • Use SMS reminders to supplement email reminders -- I would suggest to switch to SMS-only
  • Add supportive content in reminders. The content should be designed to make the user feel important.
  • Remind people of the value of the exercise, and how it can achieve their goals
Comment Why did reminders not have an added effect of increasing the efficacy of the BCSS, despite their popularity? It is possible that the ACT-based rehearsals were so effective, engaging, and intrinsically motivating that reminders were not needed.

James Spader likes something

"Tracking Mental Well-Being: Balancing Rich Sensing and Patient Needs"
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Summary thing
Experiment thing
Clustering thing
Lessons learned thing

James Spader likes something

"Monitoring activity of patients with bipolar disorder using smart phones"
it's Steff, scene 1
Summary thing
Background thing
Experiment thing
Clustering thing
Lessons learned

James Spader likes something

it's Steff, scene 1
Summary thing
Background thing
Experiment thing
Clustering thing
Lessons learned

James Spader likes something

it's Steff, scene 1
Summary thing
Background thing
Experiment thing
Clustering thing
Lessons learned