Dr. Vlasta Hus,
Professor, Department of Elementary Teacher Education, University of Maribor, Slovenia.


ISBN 978-93-89246-14-8 (Print)
ISBN 978-93-89246-51-3 (eBook)
DOI: 10.9734/bpi/pass/v2



This book covers key areas of arts and social studies. The contributions by the authors include adolescents; psychosomatic symptoms; trauma; benchmark on minimum academic standard; university education; university leadership; politics; social aspects; autism; special education; learning; attention deficit disorder; child neuropsychology; neuropsychological correction; developmental games; playing activity; psychological development; reading process; methods of teaching; teaching of reading; learning disabilities; orientation in learning; early development; qualitative neuropsychology; child neuropsychology; psychological well-being; psychological distress; workload; working hours; preschool development; spatial development; cultural perspectives; colonized countries etc. This book contains various materials suitable for students, researchers and academicians of this area.


Prevalence of Psychosomatic Symptoms among Traumatized Palestinian Adolescents in the Gaza Strip

Thabet Abdelaziz, N. Abu Sneada, Dajani Khuloud Khayyat, Panos Vostanis

Perspectives of Arts and Social Studies Vol. 2, , 24 August 2019, Page 1-15

Aims: To estimate the prevalence of psychosomatic symptoms among traumatized Palestinian adolescents in Gaza Strip. 
Methods: The study sample consisted of 380 adolescents randomly selected from secondary schools in Gaza Strip, of whom 171 were boys and 209 were girls between 15-18 years. Data was collected using a socio-demographic checklist, the Gaza Traumatic Events Checklist, and the Psychosomatic Symptoms Scale. For statistical analysis, questionnaire data was normally distributed, for this reason independent t-test was used to investigate differences between two groups. Associations between continuous variables were measured by the Pearson's correlation coefficient test. One-way ANOVA post hoc Tukey was used to investigate differences between more than two groups.
Results: The most common reported traumatic events due to the war on Gaza were: watching mutilated bodies and wounded people in TV (92.3%), and hearing shelling of the area by artillery (89.4%). The mean number of traumatic events experienced by Palestinian adolescents was 14. Boys reported significantly more traumatic events than girls. Adolescents from family with monthly income less than 150 US $ experienced more traumatic events than the other groups. Mean psychosomatic symptoms was 48.19, digestive system symptoms was 19.97, cardiovascular symptoms was 10.23,  respiratory system symptoms was 3.82, urogenital system symptoms was 2.98,  skeletal musculature symptoms was 5.29, and skin symptoms was 7.34. Boys scored more in total psychosomatic and skin symptoms. There was a significant relationship between traumatic experiences and psychosomatic symptoms.
Conclusion: Palestinian adolescents experienced significant traumatic events due to the war on Gaza Strip which were significantly associated with developing psychosomatic symptoms. Such findings highlight the urgent need for establishing community mental health school based programs to help adolescents with such symptoms and increase awareness about their nature and management. Also there is need for conducting training courses for teachers and school counsellors to increase their knowledge about general mental health problems in schools and ways of dealing with such problems. Also, training courses for primary care and hospital physicians, who might attribute to physical causes, and liaison between physical and mental health services.  

Universities’ Leadership Compliance with the National Universities Commission’s Benchmark on Minimum Academic Standard and Its Impact on Quality of Nigerian University Education

Elizabeth Yinka Ibijola

Perspectives of Arts and Social Studies Vol. 2, , 24 August 2019, Page 16-25

This study investigated the level of Nigerian Universities’ leadership compliance with the National Universities Commission’s benchmark on minimum academic standard, and its impact on the quality of Nigerian university education. This is consequent upon the observations of some stakeholders in university education, that the failure of universities’ leadership to comply with the National Universities Commission (NUC) benchmark on minimum academic standard, has been the major problem of quality decline in Nigerian university education. Descriptive research of survey design was employed in the study. The population consisted of the staff members from public universities in south-west Nigeria, while the sample consisted of 50 members of staff each from 3 federal and 3 state universities. The finding revealed a moderate level of universities’ leadership compliance with the NUC benchmark on minimum academic standard. The finding was compared with the table on quality of Nigerian university education. A significant relationship was established between universities’ leadership compliance with NUC benchmark and quality of Nigerian university education, and no significant difference was established between the federal and state universities’ staff assessment of leadership compliance with the NUC benchmark. Based on these findings, conclusions were drawn and recommendations made. Quality can only be acquired when set standard are achieved, but may be difficult where funding is inadequate. The moderate level of universities’ leadership compliance established by the study was an indication of leadership failure to comply fully with NUC benchmark on minimum academic standard. This confirmed the stakeholders’ observation that the failure of leadership to comply fully with NUC benchmark on minimum academic standard has been a major problem of quality decline in Nigerian university education. However, this finding may not have been unconnected with the poor funding pattern of government. The non-significant difference established between the assessment of the federal and state university staff, on Nigerian university leadership compliance with NUC benchmark on minimum academic standard is an indication that ownership status has no impact on universities’ leadership level of compliance. Conclusively, Nigerian universities’ leadership should not only give a total compliance to NUC benchmark on minimum academic standard, but improve upon it, by attaining a level higher than the set standard in order to improve on the quality of its education. The government should increase on its budgetary provision for university education as “without good budgets, there are no school.”

Political, Economical, Social, Cultural and Technological Obstacles in the Schools

Süleyman Göksoy

Perspectives of Arts and Social Studies Vol. 2, , 24 August 2019, Page 26-45

Organizational structure forms the interaction and responsibilities among duties, individuals and resources in an organization. Traditional organizational structures are generally categorized as functional, separated, strategic work unit, matrix and product set structure. Successful institutions give importance to informal organizational factors along with formal organizational factors. Informal organizational factors are mostly people oriented topics. Organizational managers are expected to be leaders and coordinate the staff in accordance with the organizational purposes in order to use the material and human resources of the organization rationally. Managers play a fundamental role in school quality and they have an impact on school and classroom management with the management approaches they perform. Educational organizations are social open systems and they make great effort to maintain their existance and to acheve their goals. Despite their effort, some may be defined as “effective” and some may be called “less effective”. Many research have demonstrated that school efficacy is not related with financial status but with organizational culture and climate. This section aimed to determine obstacles in educational organizations through PEST (Political, Economical, Social and Technological aspects) analysis and to make advisory inferences for future research. This study is important to reveal the obstacles in the schools and educational organizations. By doing this, the quality of the school will increase, students’ success will be enhanced and educators will experience more job satisfaction in their professions. The political obstacles in schools are related to syndicate, diplomacy, hierarchy, upper management and legislation and the economical obstacles stem from school budget, personal rights and limited school resources. The social obstacles are school environment, principal, teacher, student and the issues related to school culture. The technological obstacles consists of issues related to teaching material and virtual system. The political, social, cultural, economical and technological obstacles in schools should be eliminated in order to get the expected efficiency in schools. It can be concluded that political, social, cultural, economic and technologic obstacles should be reduced in order to obtained desired productivity in schools.

The Use of Graphic Drawing in Comprehending Mathematics Problems by an Autistic Student

Hosin Shirvani

Perspectives of Arts and Social Studies Vol. 2, , 24 August 2019, Page 46-56

The case study included an adolescence male diagnosed with Autism. It also investigated the impact of using drawing representations when solving math word problems with a maximum of three steps. Math achievement during three phases periods: before treatment, during treatment, and after treatment were compared and concluded that there was an improvement in math achievement during and after treatment compared to before treatment. Moreover, the study showed the participant had problems comprehending several words with mathematical connotations. The study involved a male student who was diagnosed to have autism by school official and psychologists. The study showed that the student exhibited a significant improvement in solving mathematics word problems when the participants used pictorial representations to better understand them. Another important finding was that the participants had difficulty understanding some English word with mathematical connotations; for example, he had problem with words such as together, each, half, minimum, maximum, at least, at most, multiplication, division, and most when they are used in math word problems. Teachers should be aware that these children may show a high level of knowledge in some academic subjects, but having problem understanding some simple English words. Some researchers call these children “little professors” since they may excel in one area, and teachers may assume that these children do not need any assistant when working on math problem; thereby, instructors may not modify their lessons or assessments in meeting their needs. One important limitation of this study is the use of its generalization of the results to other children with autism because children could be at different levels of autism spectrum. Literature review of learning by children with autism has shown that no two children with autism are alike. Therefore, educators or teachers should use a teaching strategy that addresses the needs of all learners.

Methods and Procedures of Neuropsychological Correction in Preschool Children with ADDH

Yulia Solovieva, Luis Quintanar

Perspectives of Arts and Social Studies Vol. 2, , 24 August 2019, Page 57-72a

According to psychological and neuropsychological research, the pre-school age is the age of significant changes and transformations. Attention deficit disorder is one of developmental syndromes frequently detected at pre-school age. The present study shows the methods and procedures of neuropsychological assessment and correction. Methods and procedures of correction are based on the conception of activity applied to game activity. The study includes results of neuropsychological correction obtained in the group of Mexican pre-school children with diagnosis of deficit of attention. Neuropsychological correction was designed and applied in individual therapeutic sessions. The method of qualitative neuropsychological clinical analysis based on Luria’s neuropychological theory was applied. The subjects of the study were Mexican pre-school children with diagnostic of ADDH from private urban zone. The previous neuropsychological assessment showed the necessity of inclusion of specific methods of correction for formation not only of strategies of regulation and control, but also of spatial functions in population of children with ADDH at pre-school age. Both aspects, programming and control and spatial functions were included in the program of games with objects, symbols, rules and roles. All games were attractive for participants and produced high motivation and positive emotional involvement. Neuropsychological assessment accomplished after program application showed significant positive differences in psychological activity of the children and in brain functional mechanisms. The authors discuss the possibility of the usage of interactive guided activities such as games with structure and objective as an alternative method instead of common medication in cases of ADDH.

Quality Attributes of Family Planning Programme towards a Successful Family Life

Bridget Esele Uwameiye

Perspectives of Arts and Social Studies Vol. 2, , 24 August 2019, Page 73-79

This paper discusses quality attributes of the family planning programme towards a successful family life. It highlights the barriers preventing most families from utilizing family planning facilities in Nigeria. The article went further to explore the quality attributes associated to family planning. The characteristics of a quality family planning programme were discussed and attributes of a well planned family life x-rayed. The quality family life and national development were examined and suggestions were proffered for achieving a good family planning program in any community in Nigeria. Family planning programme is a lifesaving scheme to families and investing in it is a necessity in today’s world. The continuous increase in the Nigerian population has aggravated the level of poverty among the populace. This is most devastating to families, preventing them from living a qualitative family life. This phenomenon is a drain to the nation’s human resources in national development. The various hindrances to family planning can be addressed to give chance to quality family planning programme in Nigeria towards a successful family life of its criticism.

Learning of Reading and Writing in Primary School: A Method of Reflective and Conscious Analysis of Words

Yulia Solovieva, Omar Torrado, Luis Quintanar

Perspectives of Arts and Social Studies Vol. 2, , 24 August 2019, Page 80-104a

Reading at school traditionally is based on isolated training of this cognitive ability. Common methods are repetition, memorization and reproduction of given information. In public schools in Mexico, children never read entire books and only pages or paragraphs from the official programs. Even in private schools reading acquisition is a mechanic process, which starts from the first grade of preschool age and continues up to the sixth grade of primary school. Cognitive tests measure the quantity of words read loudly in a minute with no attention to understanding of meaning. Alternative methods within active school and global reading can’t solve this problem, because of lack of attention for orientation, analysis of content of actions and reflexive participation of the children in their own school actions. Our aim is to present an example of usage of orientation for initial introduction of reading process in primary school and to compare results of the method with results of traditional method of teaching. The method of introduction of reading and writing is based on psychological conception of orientation as essential element of activity. Reading process is analysed as symbolic codification and de-codification of oral words. The provide authors added detailed analysis of phonological and phonetic system of Spanish language. The method includes introduction of actions of codification at materialized, perceptual and verbal levels with gradual passing to reading of words and sentences. The program was applied in private primary school “Kepler” in the city of Puebla (Mexico) for six years. Results of assessment of reading and writing process in experimental and control groups of school children have shown significant differences favourable for experimental groups. The comparison of the effects of the method on children with specific learning disabilities is provided in control and experimental group. Among strong advantages of the method is correct pronunciation of all known and unknown words in Spanish, usage of correct space between words in writing, reduced number of orthographic mistakes. The Method of reflective and conscious analysis of words is a useful tool for introduction of reading and writing in children with normal psychological and neuropsychological development and in cases of syndromes and disabilities.

A Comparative Study on Mental Health, Work-related Stress and Work-life Balance in Public Universities in Brazil and Canada

Ana Alice Vilas Boas, Estelle Morin

Perspectives of Arts and Social Studies Vol. 2, , 24 August 2019, Page 105-122

Aims: This paper aims reporting the perception Brazilian and Canadian public universities professors have of the level of stress they experience at work and the perception of their work–life balance, taking into account their workload and the number of hours they usually work per week. Another objective is to test the relations work-related stress and work-life balance might have with the professors’ mental health. The final objective is to compare the perceptions of Brazilian professors with those of Canadian professors, to look for differences.
Study Design: To achieve these objectives, this paper assesses Mental Health, Work-related Stress and Work-Life Balance for professors working in these two countries and test for their differences. The sample consists of 274 Brazilian professors and 252 Canadian professors. Data were collected through an online questionnaire using Survey Monkey Platform. The questionnaire was designed for assessing the following indicators: Psychological Distress, Psychological Well-Being, Workload (physical load, mental load and emotional load), Number of Working Hours per Week, Work-related Stress and Work-Life Balance.
Methodology: Reliability analyses demonstrated that all tested components are consistent to evaluate Mental Health, Work-related Stress, Workload and Work-Life Balance. Pearson correlation analyses was performed among the studied variables or components. Test t was applied to identify significant mean differences between the two samples. Finally, linear regression, step by step, was performed to predict the relationship among the variables.
Results: Correlation analyses showed that Psychological Distress is negatively related to Work-Life Balance. Correlation analyses showed also that Psychological Well-Being is negatively related to Work-related Stress and positively related to Work-Life Balance. There are significant mean differences between Brazilian and Canadian professors in Physical Load, Mental Load, Work-related Stress and Work-Life Balance. However, mean differences for Psychological Distress, Psychological Well-Being, Emotional Load and Number of Working Hours per Week are not statistically different. Linear regression analysis, step by step, controlled for Life Events, showed that Work-related Stress predict 46,2% of the scores of Psychological Distress. Another linear regression also showed that Work-related Stress and Work-Life Balance predict 41% of the scores of Psychological Well-Being.
Conclusion: In summary, we may say that Brazilian professors perceive more work-life balance, but they face more Mental Load to perform their work. Nonetheless, Canadian professors find more Physical Load on their work than Brazilian professors.  

Early Childhood in Mexico: Historical and Cultural Psychology and Neuropsychology

Yulia Solovieva, Hector Pelayo

Perspectives of Arts and Social Studies Vol. 2, , 24 August 2019, Page 123-133a

According to conception of historical and cultural psychology, introduced by L.S. Vigotsky, early childhood should be understood as a specific period of development or specific psychological age. Appropriate ways of care, communication, developmental procedures and organization of life should be taken into account by parents, teachers and other specialists. In the reality of Mexican Institutions such aspects are not always considered as important guidelines for treatment of children with normal and abnormal development. Only medical and hygiene aspects are normally respected. The objective of the article is to describe general information about early childhood institutions in Mexico and to present original proposal for organization of specialized attention for early development. The authors present experience in attendance of newborns and young children during first two years of life in Hospitals and Institutions of the city of Puebla. Special attention is directed to original proposals for organization of emotional and personal communication between adult and child in specific kinds of joint actions. Results of concrete studies with normal newborns and newborns with neurologic risks are included. The authors discuss the importance of qualitative approach based on the theory of cultural activity for profound understanding of the significance of early age in the stream of cultural development and the possibility to creation of important recommendations for organization of care and life in broad social context. Finally, it is necessary to express that the present work tries to provide a new perspective into clinical and educative practices with the babies during the first two years of life. The concept of functional system becomes even more significant from the perspective of our research and findings. In other words, it might be the path for understanding of interaction of different levels of human activity at the early age: psychological level and the level of brain mechanisms. It is obvious that the present work shares the opinion that early stimulation might not be limited to isolated motor exercises. Early development is cultural from the very beginning and should involve complex cultural mechanisms from the very beginning. The family in particular and the adults in general should take the job into their hands with proper understanding of the essence of cultural development.

Re-asserting Cultural Perspectives: Old People and New Ideas in Bole Butake’s Lake God and The Survivors and Sankie Maimo’s Succession in Sarkov

Eleanor Anneh Dasi

Perspectives of Arts and Social Studies Vol. 2, , 24 August 2019, Page 134-144

African cultures have undergone transformations from the colonial period to the present, often to the detriment of its cultural evolution and within the larger global community. As it were, colonial education subordinated African communalism and created in its place an anti-African spirit evident in the assimilation of western values. This did not only end up in a kind of cultural betrayal, but also posed as a serious threat to the dignity and identity of the people. Those who fall prey to this kind of cultural imperialism are the young people who are often irrationally carried away by western fashion and modes that they tend to neglect and/or forget their cultural ways of life as they join the race of “progress.” This situation has given rise to a conscious effort by creative writers to re-assert and protect African values while at the same time liberating themselves from the longstanding western effort at suppressing, controlling and dominating their thoughts particularly through neo-colonialism. These writers focus on the need for Africans to rediscover who they are, especially in relation to their cultural values. It is not just rediscovering themselves, but it is also using this rediscovery to reconstruct that unique part of their culture that has almost been annihilated through external influence. The old people who have not yet acquired western/colonial education and who still stand firm on the practices that hold their communities together are the major medium through which the above mentioned writers envisage an emergence of a new vision of Africa. They act as conscientising forces to the younger generation who are intent on obliterating their values and giving up their identities. It is at the backdrop of this that I seek, in this paper, to show how the old are represented as custodians of African cultural wisdom in Bole Butake’s Lake God (1999), and The Survivors (1999) and Sankie Maimo’s Succession in Sarkov (1986). In this role, the power of the myths of old reemerges   and is handed down to ensure social and political stability of the land. Hence it is believed that Africa can plan its future through its indigenous cultural traditions at least in the aspects that are compatible with the newly acquired western perspectives.  

Progressive Work with Drawing in Groups of Preschool Children in Mexico and Colombia

Yulia Solovieva, Luis Quintanar

Perspectives of Arts and Social Studies Vol. 2, , 24 August 2019, Page 145-158a

It is well known that pre-school age is the period of significant importance for psychological development and for preparation of children for learning at school. The process of learning and achievements at school depend on the types of activities selected at pre-school level. Unfortunately, it is often to find out that introduction of writing and reading is among the most common activities in preschool institutions all over the world. The goal of our article is to share a formative experience of drawing as suitable activity for children development at preschool age. Mexican and Colombian preschool children were included in the study aged between 5 and 6 years. All children belonged to suburban area of the cities state of Tlaxcala (Mexico) and Bogota (Colombia) and assisted to preschool official level without any kind of previous experience in drawing. The original program for gradual formation of drawing by stages was applied for 8 months daily for 1 hour. The program is based on the conception of the zone of proximal development, introduced by Vigotsky for developmental psychology. The program included different stages with multiple activities directed to analyses of concrete objects and toys and its essential features, denomination, classification, differentiation, comparison of objects, analyses of basic shapes and spatial organization of details. All activities within the program were collective and guided by a teacher, previously trained for this purpose. After that graphic representation of shapes were used with the help of constant external orientation. All children were tested before and after application of the program. Specific tasks were selected from Brief Neuropsychological Assessment [29] for assessment of children. Among the tasks were included: copy of objects with elements of spatial orientation, free drawing, production of drawings by categorical instructions. After program application children from experimental group showed qualitative positive achievements in graphic representations of objects, spatial orientation, number of drawings and of essential features of represented objects. We conclude that drawing is extremely useful activity for psychological development of children and the level of preparation for school learning, especially for writing process. Drawing activity had positive effect for spatial functions and images of objects in visual modality. We suggest that our program might be used in pre-school official institutions with in order to guarantee required level psychological formation of pre-school age. The program might be used even in groups of children in conditions of poor leaving conditions and social deprivation.