Poster Presentations

Author:
Asst. Prof. Lee Kuan-Huei
Singapore Institute of Technology

Co-Author:
Ms Adeline Quek Cun Ming
Singapore Institute of Technology

Description:
Mentoring is defined as a relationship that last over an extended period of time and is marked by substantial emotional commitment by both parties. The time invested in mentoring reflects the commitment level of the organization in employee development. Therefore, it is crucial for organizations to look into the prospect of an effective mentoring programme that focuses on the individual needs of each employee and provide avenues for future growth.

From the literature review, the inefficiency presented in formal workplace mentoring approaches is higher in comparison to informal mentoring, indicating the difficulty in developing effective mentoring programmes. In order to understand which are the elements involved in the delivery of effective mentoring programme, the team conducted ten semi-structured face-to-face interviews of different hotel professionals who were all in managerial positions and involved in the training and development of employees.

Participants were contacted through referral contacts using purposive sampling method. A total word count of over 36,000 was collected and transcribed after the interviews. Thematic analysis was used to analyse the data collected. After analysing all date, a new model (Figure 1) was developed to present the inter-relationships among different elements in the mentoring system. It is recommended to use a mixed mentoring approach instead of only formal mentoring or only informal mentoring. Furthermore, it is important that the mentoring programme be conducted face-to-face between mentor and mentee. This mixed-method approach will lead to a positive perceived effectiveness of the mentoring programme for all three parties: the hotel, mentor and mentee.

Author:
Asst. Prof. Ryan Kirwan
Singapore Institute of Technology

Co-Authors:
Dr. Vivek Balachandran
Singapore Institute of Technology

Asst. Prof. Soumyadeb Chowdhury
Aston University

Description:
The ITP module runs under SIT’s InfoComm Technology (ICT) cluster. It exposes students to industry via joint projects comprising industry and academic leads, with student teams. Industry propose projects that fulfil industrial needs, while SIT ensures projects meet students’ learning objectives. Students work directly with industrial supervisors via regular meetings between them, faculty and industry, ensuring a smooth and symbiotic partnership.

ITP affords students a combination of three professional and learning opportunities. One, the application of taught knowledge: integration of theory and practice, acquisition of specialist knowledge and development of professional skills. Two, exposure to real-world conditions: appreciation of constraints in respective industry contexts to develop skills of adaptability, creativity and innovation, while adding value to the work place. Three, shortened work induction periods: translating to higher productivity and employability, with lower training costs to employers of SIT’s graduates.

This paper covers how ITP adheres to key principles of Applied Learning. Firstly, how ICT’s taught modules and their utilization provide scaffolding for students: how their previous studies support industrial skills and instill the core knowledge required to excel in projects. Secondly, how authentic assessment takes place. Both SIT faculty and industrial supervisors assess students to gain a balanced evaluation of both academic excellence and industrial relevance. Thirdly, the thorough measurement of Learning Outcomes (LOs). Students, faculty and industry have participated in LO evaluations over 2 years of ITP. These data shed light on how well academic and industrial standards align, and indicate how much students value of their ITP experience.

Author:
Assoc. Prof. Indriyati Atmosukarto
Singapore Institute of Technology

Co-Authors:
Assoc. Prof. Karin Avnit
Singapore Institute of Technology

Assoc. Prof. Ryan Kirwan
Singapore Institute of Technology

Dr. Soumyadeb Chowdhury
Singapore Institute of Technology

Asst. Prof. Fatma Meawad
University of Glasgow (Singapore)

Description:
This abstract discusses Applied Learning pedagogy in the field of Software Engineering. The pedagogy is implemented in a year-long software engineering course for third year computer science students.

This course combines two complementary courses: Professional Software Development (PSD) and Team Project (TP). PSD is taught as a flipped module that covers the theoretical aspects of Software Engineering, and introduces students to modern software development methods and techniques.

In TP, students work in small teams on an industry project, in which they experience the challenges of real-world Software Engineering and apply the concepts taught in PSD. The project is created by an industry client under advisement of university faculty. The industry client ensures the real-world relevance of the project, while faculty ensure it fulfills the students’ learning outcomes. Working with real-world clients simulates the challenges met by software engineers in handling and negotiating changes in project requirements, while promoting students’ commitment to delivering an industrial quality product as a team. Faculty facilitate monthly formative assessments on team management and interactions with industry clients.

At the end of TP, teams generate a range of project artefacts and are assessed on how they applied Software Engineering principles and practices in the development of their project. A final dissertation reflecting the teams’ experiences during the project is also used for assessment. PSD concludes with a final exam to determine the depth of students’ knowledge on software engineering theory. Together PSD and TP provide students with a holistic applied learning experience for future Software Engineers.

Author:
Asst. Prof. Karen Hong
Singapore Institute of Technology

Description:
The potentials of textiles have gone beyond fashion and aesthetics.

For this research, it is found that textiles can be applied as a source of tactile therapy for children who are diagnosed with sensory processing disorder, specifically to aid children suffering from tactile sensory dysfunctions. Touch is a very important sense. Through our skin, we receive information regarding touch, pressure, texture, temperature and pain. Being able to react positively to touch sensations enables us to feel comfortable and emotionally secure.

For the group of children who are experiencing tactile dysfunction, they have difficulty accepting touch, or are unaware of the sense of touch or even constantly seeking touch. A range of textile based products, collectively known as Tactile Toys are designed specifically for their use during the occupational therapy sessions as tactile therapy, helping them to improve their ability to regulate, interpret and execute appropriate behavioural responses to touch sensations so that they are able to live their lives in a functional manner.

Tactile Toys are designed by using three-dimensional structural textiles created by the technique of heat setting on thermoplastic fabrics. This technique enables a flat fabric to be transformed into three-dimensional sculptural forms by different methods of fabric manipulations. Tactile Toys are being added to the current range of sensory toys and products as tactile therapy; supporting children who are tactile over-responsive, tactile under-responsive and tactile seeking to overcome their dysfunction and respond appropriately to tactile senses in their daily lives.

Author:
Asst. Prof. George Liu Zhaoping
Singapore Institute of Technology

Co-Authors:
Assoc. Prof. Donald MacLaurin
Singapore Institute of Technology

Ms. Nicole Cheng
Singapore Institute of Technology

Ms. Cheng Kai Jun
Singapore Institute of Technology

Prof. David Jones
Singapore Institute of Technology

Description:
The value and benefits of field trips in tourism and hospitality have been reported by many studies (Xie, 2004). Field trips can increase students’ practical knowledge and help faculty members to develop professional experiences (Goh, 2011; Wong & Wong, 2008).

A typical fieldtrip for hospitality students includes a tour of hotel facilities such as hotel rooms, food & beverage outlets, and conference rooms, followed by a question and answer session.

This model may address the needs of junior students with little or no hospitality work experience by providing them with authentic learning experiences, but it is not very attractive to students with hospitality work experiences or those who have finished their hotel/MICE internship.

The objective of this study is to explore how hospitality instructors can design impressive field trips for senior students by adding innovativeness to their experiential learning. Two field trips, an Expedia Travel Research Lab visit and a Singapore Expo (SingEX) field trip, designed by two Hospitality Business Programme (HB) professors at Singapore Institute of Technology (SIT), were named as the most impressive field trips by two HB students after their two years of study at SIT.

This study will identify the innovative factors of those two trips based on data from students’ reflection journals and explain trip designers’ thoughts on how they have designed these creative trips. This study can enrich the experiential learning theory and help instructors in designing impressive field trips for senior students.

Author:
Mrs. Florizel Adolph
Edu-Build Development

Co-Author:
Ms. Tamlyn Adolph
Edu-Build Development

Description:
Title: Probability Theory: Increasing the Odds for Success Mission Statement • “Promoting child health and development through a comprehensive Early childhood Development centre and community initiative.”
• “To create a thriving Early childhood Development centre through development of jobs, education, and cultural pride.”
• “To develop a safe and healthy neighborhood through collaborative planning, community action, and policy advocacy.”
• “Promoting community health, education, and development by connecting people, ideas and resources.”
• Thus our slogan:’ Reach, teach and build a child today”.

Goal: To improve the functioning of employees in the workplace in the following areas: professionalism, personal interactions, creativity, productivity, and motivation. Our main focus is job creation and poverty alleviation. Need for the project: 1.Families who live in South Africa faces serious challenges, including poverty, crime, unemployment, and low educational attainment. South Africa has one of the highest unemployment and child poverty rate in the world. Close to 40% of high school student’s drop out of school due to financial difficulty. The target area for this proposal is served by other programs such as Head Start, Family Preservation, and Welfare to Work and Weed and Seed. Theme: The focus is on employees re-energizing themselves.

Author:
Asst. Prof. Agnes Xue
Singapore Institute of Technology

Description:
This paper describes a collaborative project-based learning between an industry partner and the university where final year students from the interior design program used a new studio framework to develop a live brief for spaces meant for patients with dementia – students do not need to execute the client’s opinion as a consultancy service.

Students are supposed to sharpen their intellectual awareness by dealing with vague problems. The learning sequence is as follows: select the subject matter and define the path to the product; brainstorm and make thinking maps; plan schedules and resources; do research and gather information; making explicit analyses and comparisons of the paradigms by layering social, political and economic relevance; carry out interim evaluation; continue gathering information; prepare spatial proposals; give a presentation; reflect on the process.

The new framework proposed can contribute to the teaching of the interior design discipline where it is beyond architectural and technical elements. Students learnt to creatively package and communicate their projects not for grades but with the aim to affect the world-at-large – this studio enabled them to see their knowledge, skill, and talents at work in a real-life situation.

Author:
Asst. Prof. George Liu Zhaoping
Singapore Institute of Technology

Co-Author:
Mr. Xie Xin
Guilin Tourism University

Description:
Arranging hotel visits for hotel and tourism conference/workshop participants has become a common practice. Organizers combine hotel visits with lecturing to enhance people’s learning experiences. Recently, the hotel visits provided by the organizer of a hotel management workshop in China received extremely positive feedback from attendants.

Based on data collected from eleven informants, this study aims to compare the perceptions of field trip organizers, hosting hotel employees, and hotel visitors, and summarize the success factors of the hotel visits.

With a clear learning objective of using hotel visits as effective supplements to workshop lectures, the organizers selected six hotels and resorts with distinct products and services and provided four routes to participants. Taking these groups of visitors as potential customers or sources of future employees, all hosting hotel employees clearly understand the learning objective of the workshop and set unique schedules to accommodate the needs of these visitors (who are mainly hotel management educators). The many success factors suggested by visitors include the idiosyncratic design and management style of W Hotel Guangzhou, the loyal and committed employees of the White Swan Hotel, the excellent lunch buffet of Grand Hyatt, the tailor-made hotel visit programme of Guangzhou NanSha Grand Hotel, and the tour of back house offered by Bishuiwan Hot Spring.

Author:
Mr. Paul Hume
The Glasgow School of Art, Singapore Institute of Technology

Description:
Most often we only see the results of creativity. We admire the advertisement, film, design, painting, installation or innovative technology and we say to ourselves, “I wish that I’d thought of that.” There seems to be an intangible air of mystery surrounding such achievements that requires a special talent or that most elusive of all creative gifts, genius. But in reality, ideas aren’t inspired, they’re found. In business and education, creativity has come to be valued as the essential ingredient in change and progress, yet mastering this elusive skill remains the biggest challenge faced by the majority of design students and many others within the creative industries.

Having spent 40 years in the arts, with over 20 years as an advertising Creative Director, I am convinced that the way forward is to embrace a creative practice that is driven by research. In my opinion, this is the ‘threshold concept’ for communication designers (and others seeking a creative process). Over the past 2 years I have interviewed students, faculty, designers and artists asking them to explain ‘how designers learn to think’.

The result of this case-based study is the observation that students and lecturers learn and struggle together on a journey that embraces uncertainty and resists easy answers, in pursuit of the unexpected, because ‘ideas are found not inspired.’ This presentation will seek to analyze and explore this exciting process.

Author:
Assoc. Prof. Detlev Remy
Singapore Institute of Technology

Co-Author:
Dr. Tammy Wee
Singapore Institute of Technology

Description:
The topic of final-year projects and dissertations (FYPD) undertaken by students at the end of their undergraduate studies is a topic of current interest (HEA, 2013 ). In fact, dissertations have always played a major role in student learning (Rowley, J.,& Slack, F.,2004), though the authors argue that the role and nature of dissertations has changed gradually over the last years.

In contrast with other higher education institution’s final year projects/dissertations, the students of Singapore Institute of Technology have their final year dissertation, respective called here capstone project, produced in clear motivation with industry context and specifically needs. In the case of this capstone project, and as an important component of it, the students are required to identify a problem, or gap on their own within their work environment during their eight months industry attachment (called IWSP). This forms the basis for the upcoming capstone project once the students will return to their final year. The capstone project follows then the structure of a classical academic dissertation though with a strong focus on an industry application and relevance.

The authors of this paper intend to identify to which extend these very specific capstone project are seen by the industry itself as a relevant and of importance reference. Furthermore, it would be interesting to explore if and how any results or recommendations of these capstone projects are followed up by the industry. The authors apply a multiple case study approach and conduct the primary research by interviewing industry capstone supervisors.

Author:
Dr. Ng Tsu Hau
Singapore Institute of Technology

Co-Authors:
Assoc. Prof. Edmund Liew
Singapore Institute of Technology

Mr. Rajkumar S/O Abdul Rasheed Khan
Singapore Institute of Technology

Mr. Kelvin Wong
Singapore Institute of Technology

Prof. Simon Yu
Singapore Institute of Technology

Description:
The Engineering Cluster in SIT works closely with industry partners and prepares students for their career in a practical-orientated learning environment.

Students attend foundational engineering courses in the first year and then progress to laboratory-intensive courses in the second year. Through these laboratory classes, the students acquire skillsets ((e.g Non-Destructive Testing Technique) essential to work in industry. The students then embark on their 1-year industrial attachment in their third year. The Integrated Work Study Program (IWSP) placement process is similar to an actual job application process where the CV of the students are submitted through an online portal for attachment applications. The students would then attend sessions of interview before they are matched with the companies. CV-writing as well as interviewing etiquette are coached. Most enrolled SIT students are diploma graduates and are qualified assistant engineers in the workforce. These students are assigned tasks which are appropriate for their qualification. The progress of the students are continually monitored through the submission of work summary on a biweekly basis. The students are encouraged to interact with their colleagues to understand the challenges and needs of the industry.

At the end of the industrial attachment, the students would submit a full report and also to present their experience in a forum. The students are required to propose design projects which are derived from industry needs and will then work for 12 weeks as part of the fulfilment for the degree course. Examples of the IWSP works and design projects will be shared.

Author:
Ms. Sangeeta Nair
Ngee Ann Polytechnic

Co-Authors:
Dr. Juliet Choo
Ngee Ann Polytechnic

Ms. Tan Bee Yen
Ngee Ann Polytechnic

Mr. Tan Yew Kong
Ngee Ann Polytechnic

Ms. Faith Ong
Ngee Ann Polytechnic

Ms. Angel Chan
Ngee Ann Polytechnic

Description:
This study examines the variables that correlate with students’ ability to connect the academic contents learnt to the service-learning activities in the module “Introduction to Qualitative Research Methods” in the Diploma of Business & Social Enterprise (BZSE) at Ngee Ann Polytechnic.

Eight groups of Year 2 students (total: 40) carried out mini-qualitative research projects with various community organisations after background research about them, classroom and remote lessons on the processes and skills of qualitative research methods.

They designed interview questions, practised interview skills through role-play, worked on their observation skills, collected and analysed data with guidance and regular consultation with the instructor and community organisation staff.

At the end of the project, they presented their findings and recommendations to the community organisations. Through the learning process, students had small group reflections and wrote reflective essay using the DEAL – Describe, Examine, Articulate Learning – model of critical reflection.

Finally, students completed a survey that measures academic connection, readiness to service-learning, and perceived quality of reflection. A Pearson Product moment correlation showed that there is a significant relationship between academic connection and (i) readiness to service-learning (r=.92, p<.01), (ii) perceived quality of reflection (r=.91, p<.01). Besides aligning academic contents to the community organisation’s goals, an effective service-learning module should ensure students’ clear understanding of the purpose of the service-learning, their role in the service-learning project, and provided with structured and high quality reflection guide. (This study is funded by Singapore Ministry of Education Tertiary Education Research Fund: 2 TR 17)

Author:
Mr. Maurice Abi-Raad
Rabdan Academy

Description:
The strategic vision of the minimisation of oil dependence in the Middle East region has triggered a flurry of innovation, investments and management initiatives in many public and private organisations.

The Middle East has western experts working diligently to bring western theories and practices into the region, promising a better future with concrete improvements. The basket of services ranges from corporate governance, risk and compliance, strategic management principles, leadership models, organisational performance measurements and evaluation, through to organisational learning. This is a very noble and impressive collection of management concepts that has, in many instances, assumed that people, who are at the heart of all these theories, must be western like-minded (changed) for these principles to work. Adopting western management concepts in Middle East organisations has always been a challenge for many experts, especially during the implementation phases. We should understand firstly the Arabic culture, the organisational dynamics, their value system, as well as their learning styles. We should preserve the culture and adjust the theory to fit the culture not the other way around.

This paper aims at highlighting practical cultural suggestions that may help smooth the introduction of Organisational theories in the Middle Eastern government and business scene.

Author:
Dr. Padma Rao
Singapore Institute of Technology

Description:
Self-directed learning is a process in which individuals take the initiative with or without the help of other/s, to diagnose their learning needs, formulate learning goals, identify resources for learning, select and implement learning strategies, and evaluate the learning outcomes.

The development of self-directed learning skills is an important goal of higher education. To be successful university learners, first year students need to develop skills in self-directed learning.

The purpose of this study is to identify and explore students’ perspectives on self-directed learning. A quantitative survey method to identify the factors associated with self-directed learning will be applied to gather data from 150 first year university students pursuing Hospitality Business degree in Singapore. A second data collection method will be employed to garner data from relevant reflection essays written by the students drawn from the same sample. The data from reflection essays will be analysed following the inductive approach to qualitative data analysis as framed by Miles, Huberman and Saldaana (2014). It is hoped the findings from both methods employed in this study would provide insights into student perspectives regarding specific factors and/or skills associated with self-directed learning. The recommendations, thus made can be useful in providing a frame of reference for educational institutions and educators on the implementation of the different ways or strategies to structure the learning in order to promote self-directed learning among students.

Author:
Assoc. Prof. Alan Wong Wai Pong
Singapore Institute of Technology

Co-Authors:
Asst. Prof. Rahizan Zainuldin
Singapore Institute of Technology

Asst. Prof. Benjamin Soon
Singapore Institute of Technology

Description:
Service learning has been adopted in many health sciences programmes to develop compassion, professionalism, critical thinking and awareness of global health issues.

Within our physiotherapy programme, service learning is employed as an approach to foster authentic learning and professionalism in the kinesiology module. One hundred first-year students were scheduled to visit a nursing home in groups of 25.

The service learning objectives include interacting with the nursing home residents, participating in the social group activities, assisting the therapist aides in measuring joint range of motion and conducting manual muscle strength tests. The latter is regularly performed by therapist aides to monitor development of joint contractures and muscle wasting. The practical examination performance was significantly higher for those who completed the service learning project before the practical examination than those who had practical examination before the service learning (n=45, one grade difference; p=0.018). No significant difference was found for the overall marks of the module (p=0.35).

Content analysis of the service learning reports revealed three themes. First, students appreciated the importance of procedure standardization, appropriate instructions and effective communication for joint range of motion and muscle strength measurements when applying these on nursing home residents. Second, observation of the professional behavior of staff at the nursing home was helpful. Finally students experienced and reflected on professional issues encountered by the professionals, such as staff shortage. Service learning approach in a kinesiology module within the physiotherapy programme has been shown to improve student outcomes and develop awareness of professional issues.

Author:
Ms. Janet Tan
Singapore Institute of Technology

Co-Authors:
Ms. Wong Shin Ren
Singapore Institute of Technology

Mr. Kenneth Woo
Singapore Institute of Technology

Mr. Ryan Ng
Singapore Institute of Technology

Description:
Universities have increasingly recognized that the current tertiary education system does not completely provide all the knowledge and skills that is required to succeed in the modern workplace. While educational institutes such as the Singapore Institute of Technology have started placing a greater emphasis on applied learning, allowing students an opportunity to merge classroom knowledge with workplace experience, there is still a need to address a perceived shortfall in “soft-skills”.

As students start taking part in real world working conditions, students were found to be lacking in “soft-skills” to varying degrees. Examples of so-called “soft-skills” are self-discipline and adaptability, collaborating and handling conflicts, managing relations and providing service. These “soft-skills” are arguably needed to complement the hard skills and expertise gained from universities.

This paper will discuss the importance of “soft-skills” in the applied learning context and of identifying the varying competency gaps among the student cohort. Based on mentoring experience gathered, as well as a brief literature review, this paper will suggest possible system and methods in which applied learning can be enhanced with a new focus on “soft-skills”.

Author:
Dr. Linda Tang
Singapore Institute of Technology

Co-Authors:
Assoc. Prof. Peter Loh
Singapore Institute of Technology

Assoc. Prof. Forest Tan
Singapore Institute of Technology

Description:
Students may face new or unexpected challenges in project-based learning, which include changing project requirements, a dynamic working environment, new skills required, new problems resulting from solved problems, etc. While students are the main contributors towards implementing and completing the project, the role of a facilitator does impact the progression especially when new or unexpected challenges come out.

This work studies how a facilitator can help students overcome newly emerging challenges yet still achieve the project goals as expected. We propose a LEARN model (Listen, Encourage, Assess accordingly, Respond, Notify) which can be used to describe the role a facilitator can play to supervise students facing new or unexpected difficulties in project-based learning.

The LEARN Model consists of five (5) components, which are elaborated as follows. Notify: the facilitator should notify the students in advance on the possible new challenges ahead. Experiment shows students are more receptive and thus devote more effort and time to solve problems when they are given prior notices. Listen: the facilitator should spend some time listening to students about their vexations and motivations when new or unexpected challenges emerge. Respond: the facilitator should respond to the students on their queries related to these new or unexpected challenges. Encourage: students are more confident overcoming new or unexpected obstacles when they are encouraged and motivated by the facilitator. Assess accordingly: if applicable, the assessment of the students’ performance should take the newly emerging challenges into consideration, especially if only some (but not all) teams encounter those challenges.

Author:
Ms. Joan Wee
Singapore Institute of Technology

Co-Authors:
Assoc. Prof. Siti Noorbaiyah Binti Abdul Malek
Singapore Institute of Technology

Asst. Prof. Jorry Dharmawan
Singapore Institute of Technology

Description:
Education is adapting to the rapidly changing information environment and evolving student learning behaviour. As Nobel Laureate Herbert Simon pointed out “knowing” has shifted from being able to remember and repeat information to being able to find it and use it. (as quoted in Bransford, 1996, p.5) It is thereafter important to future proof students with lifelong competencies Information Literacy (IL). Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL, 2016) defines Information literacy (IL) as a set of abilities requiring individuals to “recognize when information is needed and have the ability to locate, evaluate, use effectively the needed information, and to engage in lifelong learning”. IL features prominently as a core competencies – “Success skills” of the Institute of Food Technologist’s (IFT, 2016) Education standards.

This paper will share the partnership between the Food Technology (FT) programme faculty and Librarians in embarking on a holistic, recursive and non-linear approach to integrating and scaffolding IL skills in identified key courses It outlines the mapping of learning outcomes to the IFT competencies and to the ACRL standards in the design of the IL curriculum. It identifies the competencies to be achieved each year and the propose assessment rubrics to measure the impact to student learning.

Author:
Asst. Prof. Moshood Olawale Fadeyi
Singapore Institute of Technology

Description:
Learning is the journey from information, based on data from series of events, to competency – knowledge, understanding, skills, etc. For the learning to be active, students and their educators must be conscious of the journey. The consciousness requires thinking that derives questions and directions.

The presentation will address two case studies of inquiry-based learning process undergone by Year 2 students in the Sustainable Infrastructure Engineering (Building Services) programme at the Singapore Institute of Technology.

In both cases, students were given task of developing innovation for saving building water or energy consumptions. The students were only given the required deliverables and grading criteria for the projects. There were no specific instructions given to the students on what, how, where and when to do. The students were required to identify and define a problem, the root-cause of the problem, and proof how their developed innovation could be used to address the root-cause of the identified problem in order to provide desirable intervention to the identified and defined problem. The students noted in their reflective reports that they were not comfortable with this learning approach initially and felt frustrated, as the non-prescriptive project brief approach was very new to them. However, they noted that they learnt to appreciate the approach towards the end of the semester as they realised the creative and value delivery oriented competency they have developed along the way.

Evidences from these case studies suggest that non-prescriptive and avoidance of project information overload could enhance students’ creativity and learning journey.

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