Kobe City University of Foreign Studies

Kobe-shi, Japan

Kobe City University of Foreign Studies , KCUFS for short, is a municipal university in Japan. It is located in Gakuen-higashimachi, Nishi-ku, Kobe City. Wikipedia.

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Spalek K.,Humboldt University of Berlin | Hoshino N.,Kobe City University of Foreign Studies | Wu Y.J.,University of Sheffield | Damian M.,University of Bristol | Thierry G.,Bangor University
Cognition | Year: 2014

Bilingualism research has established language non-selective lexical access in comprehension. However, the evidence for such an effect in production remains sparse and its neural time-course has not yet been investigated. We demonstrate that German-English bilinguals performing a simple picture-naming task exclusively in English spontaneously access the phonological form of -unproduced- German words. Participants were asked to produce English adjective-noun sequences describing the colour and identity of familiar objects presented as line drawings. We associated adjective and picture names such that their onsets phonologically overlapped in English (e.g., green goat), in German through translation (e.g., blue flower - 'blaue Blume'), or in neither language. As expected, phonological priming in English modulated event-related brain potentials over the frontocentral scalp region from around 440. ms after picture onset. Phonological priming in German was detectable even earlier, from 300. ms, even though German was never produced and in the absence of an interaction between language and phonological repetition priming at any point in time. Overall, these results establish the existence of non-selective access to phonological representations of the two languages in the domain of speech production. © 2014.

Koyama Y.,Kwansei Gakuin University | Kakitani Y.,Kwansei Gakuin University | Nagae H.,Kobe City University of Foreign Studies
Molecules | Year: 2012

The mechanisms of suppression and enhancement of photocurrent/conversion efficiency (performance) in dye-sensitized solar cells, using carotenoid and chlorophyll derivatives as sensitizers, were compared systematically. The key factor to enhance the performance was found to be how to minimize interaction among the excited-state dye-sensitizer(s). In a set of retinoic-acid (RA) and carotenoic-acid (CA) sensitizers, having n conjugated double bonds, CA7 gave rise to the highest performance, which was reduced toward RA5 and CA13. The former was ascribed to the generation of triplet and the resultant singlet-triplet annihilation reaction, while the latter, to the intrinsic electron injection efficiency. In a set of shorter polyene sensitizers having different polarizabilities, the one with the highest polarizability (the highest trend of aggregate formation) exhibited the higher performance toward the lower dye concentration and the lower light intensity, contrary to our expectation. This is ascribed to a decrease in the singlet-triplet annihilation reaction. The performance of cosensitization, by a pair of pheophorbide sensitizers without and with the central metal, Mg or Zn, was enhanced by the light absorption (complementary rather than competitive), the transition-dipole moments (orthogonal rather than parallel) and by the pathways of electron injection (energetically independent rather than interactive).

Kakitani Y.,Kwansei Gakuin University | Hou A.,Kwansei Gakuin University | Miyasako Y.,Kwansei Gakuin University | Koyama Y.,Kwansei Gakuin University | Nagae H.,Kobe City University of Foreign Studies
Chemical Physics Letters | Year: 2010

The pump-probe spectral data matrices of reaction centers from Rhodobacter sphaeroides R26.1 and 2.4.1 in the 650-1265 nm region, that have been obtained by excitation of P at 868 nm with ∼0.1 ps pulses, were analyzed by singular-value decomposition followed by global fitting by the use of a three-component sequential model. The species-associated difference spectra showed the P*BH → P+B-H → P+BH- sequential electron transfer and the rates of electron transfer were determined to be (1.9 ps)-1 and (2.7 ps)-1 for the first and the second steps, respectively. The P*BH ⇌ P+B-H reversible electron transfer was also identified. © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Nagae H.,Kobe City University of Foreign Studies | Koyama Y.,Kwansei Gakuin University
Chemical Physics | Year: 2010

An expression for the Albrecht A-term resonance-Raman excitation profiles (RREP) of a pigment dispersed in a KBr disc, in such a way that the pigment molecules aggregate in a microcrystal and the microcrystals are dispersed in the KBr disc, is formulated by taking into account the self-absorption of incident and scattered light and the distribution of microcrystals properly. Based on the resultant formula, simulations for the RREPs of spheroidene dispersed in KBr disc were carried out in the spectral region from 12,000 to 24,000 cm -1. Fairly good agreement between the simulations and the observed RREPs was obtained for different concentrations of spheroidene. Mechanisms have been investigated which enable the observation of the formally optically-forbidden (very weakly allowed) 2Ag - and 1B u - states of spheroidne in RREPs free from the contribution of the optically-allowed 1Bu + state, and a two-step self-absorption mechanism is proposed. © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Koyama Y.,Kwansei Gakuin University | Kakitani Y.,Kwansei Gakuin University | Miki T.,Kwansei Gakuin University | Christiana R.,Kwansei Gakuin University | Nagae H.,Kobe City University of Foreign Studies
International Journal of Molecular Sciences | Year: 2010

The unique excited-state properties of the overlapped (diabatic) optically-allowed 1B+ u and the optically-forbidden 1Bu - or 3A- g vibronic levels close to conical intersection ('the diabatic pair') are summarized: Pump-probe spectroscopy after selective excitation with ~100 fs pulses of all-trans carotenoids (Cars) in nonpolar solvent identified a symmetry selection rule in the diabatic electronic mixing and diabatic internal conversion, i.e., '1B+ u-to-1Bu - is allowed but 1Bu --to-3A- g is forbidden'. On the other hand, pump-probe spectroscopy after coherent excitation with ~30 fs of all-trans Cars in THF generated stimulated emission with quantum beat, consisting of the long-lived coherent diabatic cross term and a pair of short-lived incoherent terms. © 2010 by the authors.

Sato M.,Yamaguchi University | Matsuo T.,Yamaguchi University | Atmore H.,Kobe City University of Foreign Studies | Akashi M.,Yamaguchi University
Frontiers in Physiology | Year: 2014

The daily variations found in many aspects of physiology are collectively known as circadian rhythm (from "circa" meaning "about" and "dien" meaning "day"). Circadian oscillation in clock gene expression can generate quantitative or functional variations of the molecules directly involved in many physiological functions. This paper reviews the molecular mechanisms of the circadian clock, the transmission of circadian effects to cardiovascular functions, and the effects of circadian dysfunction on cardiovascular diseases. An evaluation of the operation of the internal clock is needed in clinical settings and will be an effective tool in the diagnosis of circadian rhythm disorders. Toward this end, we introduce a novel non-invasive method for assessing circadian time-regulation in human beings through the utilization of hair follicle cells. © 2014 Sato, Matsuo, Atmore and Akashi.

Acar A.,Kobe City University of Foreign Studies
E-Learning and Digital Media | Year: 2014

This study experimentally manipulated the way students submit their assignments and tested the number of new words that are learned in each condition. The results showed that students who submitted their assignments through Facebook learned as much as those who submitted their assignment in a traditional way. In the light of these findings, we can presume that using Facebook can be as effective as traditional teaching methods, but not necessarily make students learn more.

Ramirez Gomez D.,Kobe City University of Foreign Studies
Educational Gerontology | Year: 2016

This article proposes an exploratory application of the principles of critical geragogy (Formosa, 2002, 2011, 2012) to foreign language (FL) education (i.e., L2 learning in the L1 community). Critical geragogy is an educational, practical framework intended to empower older adults and lead them to emancipate from age strictures (Glendenning & Battersby, 1990, as cited in Formosa, 2012, p. 74). These strictures permeate the FL classroom and cause many older learners to adopt self-defeating attitudes and beliefs toward their abilities to learn an FL (Andrew, 2012; Ramírez Gómez, 2014). The limited research on FL learning in older adults (60 years old and over) — either confirming, exploring, or rejecting any claim—suggests that these beliefs and attitudes are not supported by rigorous empirical evidence. Rather, they are mostly based on generally held preconceptions and impressionistic data (Ramírez Gómez, 2014, 2015). Drawing from these notions and qualitative research from various sources, I propose an exploratory set of principles for what I have called critical foreign language geragogy. In this article, I argue that a critical view of social preconceptions of aging is fundamental to transform older learners’ attitudes toward their own FL learning potential and render them more realistic and constructive. I believe that such an approach to FL geragogy may contribute to improving older learners' expectations, goal setting, and ultimate accomplishment. © 2016 Taylor & Francis.

Acar A.,Kobe City University of Foreign Studies | Deguchi A.,Kobe City University of Foreign Studies
International Journal of Electronic Commerce Studies | Year: 2013

Twitter, one of the most popular microblogging tools, has been used extensively all around the world. However, up to date, no study has addressed how culture influences the use of this communication platform. In order to close the literature gap and promote cross-cultural understandings, this paper content analyzed 4,000 tweets from 200 college students in Japan and the USA. The results showed that Japanese college students post more self-related messages and ask fewer questions compared to American college students. It was also found that tweets that refer to TV are more common in Japan, whereas sports and news tweets stand out in the USA. The evidence from this study suggests that there is a subtle and complicated relationship between culture and Twitter use.

Acar A.,Kobe City University of Foreign Studies
Journal of E-Learning and Knowledge Society | Year: 2013

Up to date, a number of studies have investigated what students feel about using social media for classes and their general attitudes toward online learning. However, there seems to be limited research on the relationship between social media and eLearning. A survey study of Japanese college students from 5 different classes showed that attitudes toward blended learning may be related to attitudes toward social media use for academic purposes. The findings also indicated that attitudes toward other types of online learning methods or having an experience of using a Facebook class page are not related to attitudes toward social media use for academic purposes.

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