Social Work

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    Adopting VR in the classroom: Perceptions of bilingual and ESL education pre-service teachers
    (EDMETIC, 2022) Figueroa Flores, Jorge F.; Huffman, Lisa; Lozada, Victor; Rosa-Dávila, Emarely
    Virtual reality (VR) is an immersive technology that is gaining momentum in education and has led to new teaching approaches. Moreover, it has spark interest in educator preparation programs and especially in the training of bilingual and ESL pre- service teachers. This article showcases a qualitative study conducted with n=27 undergraduate bilingual and ESL pre-service teachers. The study sought to determine the perception of bilingual and ESL pre-service teachers with VR and provide an understanding of VR mobile applications' experiences. All results were obtained from guided reflections made by pre-service teachers enrolled in the course theories of second language acquisition for ESL and bilingual teacher at a university located in north Texas. A content analysis was performed to analyze the reflections, and three categories were determined: strengths of VR, limitations of VR, and VR mobile applications. The findings revealed a positive perception towards the strengths of VR with 60%, including promotes student engagement (41%) and motivates students (29%). On the other hand, pre-service teachers perceived limitations of VR, including associated costs (44%) and the ability to access the internet (31%). Finally, VR mobile applications which offered VR tours were perceived to enhance learning experiences, including Google Expeditions (51%) and VR Tube (23%).
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    Racial/ethnic differences in HIV testing: An application of the health services utilization model
    (SAGE, 2018-06) Lo, Celia C.; Runnels, Ratonia C.; Cheng, Tyrone C.
    This study applying the health services utilization model examined the importance of predisposing, enabling, and need variables to the social mechanisms explaining lifetime HIV testing across racial/ethnic groups. Data for the study were derived from the National Health Interview Survey (collected 2013–2014), our final sample numbering 18,574 adults. Four subsamples reflected race/ethnicity: 13,347 Whites, 2267 Blacks, 2074 Hispanics, and 886 Asians. Logistic regression established respondent odds of ever having received HIV testing. Further statistical testing evaluated race/ethnicity’s potential moderating role in HIV testing. The findings generally support a role for Aday’s predisposing, enabling, and need factors in explaining HIV testing. Across the four subsamples, female gender, older age, and sexual minority status consistently increased lifetime HIV testing. However, we found racial/ethnic differences in HIV testing’s associations with these factors and others. Our study made a beginning in the effort to specify mechanisms leading to HIV testing—and reliable diagnosis—among four racial/ethnic groups. Understanding these mechanisms might multiply opportunities to raise testing rates for all, in turn reducing racial/ ethnic disparities in HIV treatment.