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2.2.2 Understanding

Much more important than memorising, where academic study is concerned, is understanding. This is the kind of learning which requires a willingness by the learner to work with ideas and concepts, and a willingness to explore whether an idea has really been mastered or only partially grasped. Making mistakes can be a helpful stage in this kind of learning because the mistakes can reveal what it is that is not understood. It is when we put right, or sort out, such mistakes in understanding that
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1.5 Making the most of your reflections

The value of the work you do on all the activities in this unit will be strengthened if you can keep track of it and follow the development of your own ideas as they build up. It helps to keep your notes in one place, together with other material which catches your interest for its relevance to the subject, such as newspaper cuttings, journal articles and reports, and so on. The place where you keep them may be a box file, ring binder or anything else that suits your preference. Whatever you
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1.1 Effective course study

Research into how people study effectively suggests that it is important to pay attention not only to the content of what we are trying to learn but also to the process of our learning. Time spent on the process of how you are learning need not be a distraction from achieving your learning goals. It should support your efforts to achieve them.

However, thinking about the process of your own learning is not something which typically forms part of most formal courses of study. Most people
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3.4.6 Residual stress

One factor that can cause serious problems in any material is the presence of residual tensile stress. The problem often arises as a direct result of manufacturing, when hot material is shaped and then allowed to cool to ambient temperatures. For large castings like those needed to make the eye bars, such residual stress would be modified by the subsequent heat treatment to strengthen the steel, but had to be studied as part of the research effort into the catastrophic failure of the bridge.<
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3.4.5 Fretting fatigue

An additional possibility was considered. It was known that there was significant movement of the bridge during passage of traffic, because users had noticed it many times when crossing. The joints would thus have been subjected to rotary motion around the pin in order to accommodate such vibrations. Could these have caused fatigue crack growth at the bearing surfaces?

Contact between a circular and a flat plate creates so-called Hertzian stresses at the contact zone: compressive at the
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3.3 The investigation

The investigation took three years to complete, although critical evidence emerged within weeks of the accident.

Some possibilities could be ruled out immediately. For example, there were rumours of supernatural forces at work that night, but very little solid evidence of the ‘Mothman’ emerged, either there or anywhere else. The Mothman was a demon purportedly haunting the bridge, which has supposedly appeared as a portent of similar disasters around the world. Such stories would ha
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3.2 The disaster

The 39-year-old Silver Bridge collapsed suddenly at about 5 p.m. on 15 December 1967 when the roadway was filled with rush-hour traffic – 37 vehicles were trapped on the roadway.

The first signs of collapse were later recounted by the survivors. Many occupants of the cars on the bridge had felt it ‘quivering’ before it fell. Most witnesses had then heard ‘cracking’ or ‘popping’ noises, some saying that it sounded like a ‘shotgun blast’. After this, the bridge started d
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2.6.3 Boiler explosions

Stress corrosion cracks can also build up in other structures. These were a particular problem in locomotive boilers in the early days of the railways in Britain. All such boilers were made from wrought-iron sheet, riveted together to form a cylinder. In the earliest engines, the boilers were constructed using a single line of rivets, thus forming two corners, one inside and the other outside (Author(s): The Open University

2.6.1 Stress corrosion cracking in stainless-steel structures

On 9 May 1985 the roof of a swimming pool at Uster near Zurich collapsed, killing 12 and injuring several others.

The concrete roof had been held up by a set of stainless-steel tie bars, which were found after the accident to have cracked transversely (Figure 21). Chlorine is added at qui
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1.4 Portraying a character

Activity 7

Click on 'View document' below to read ‘Portraying a character’, which outlines the main methods of revealing character in fiction.

1.1 Creating characters

Activity 1

Click on 'View document' below to read the first few paragraphs from Novakovich's chapter on ‘Character’.

8.8 Hinduism as ‘a world religion’: a more recent understanding

Traditionally, as we have seen, a Hindu was someone born to Hindu parents and into a caste with its appropriate dharma. The link between religious practice and a whole way of life bound the individual into a community from birth. Regional factors, parentage and caste affiliation largely determi
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8.2 The diversity of Hinduism

The complex tradition now known as Hinduism has emerged largely from the coming together of four main elements:

  1. The traditions of the original inhabitants of India, some of which may still continue in the cultures of India's more remote tribal peoples.

  2. The influences of the Indus Valley civilisation that flourished in northwest India until approximately the middle of the second millenium bce.

    <
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8.1 Hinduism as a ‘religion’

India's population includes followers of many religions and many people who have rejected religion in any form. The modern Republic of India has a secular constitution (one which guarantees the religious freedom of all but does not give a privileged position to any one religion) but a population which overwhelmingly identifies itself as Hindu. More than eighty per cent of India's population are Hindus, practitioners of what is now widely referred to as the religion of Hinduism. Historically,
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7.5 Religion: a ‘good’ thing or a ‘bad’ thing?

In considering the value of religions, we can begin by saying that one of the first tasks of the critical student should certainly be to test the basis of judgements offered by other commentators. We saw earlier that the Church of Scientology has had problems gaining official recognition as a ‘relig
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6.3 Setting things apart

The tendency within religious behaviour to set things apart from the everyday does not just apply to time and place but also to ideas of authority (leaders and texts), to beliefs more generally, to institutions and to aspects of behaviour as, for example, in dress and diet. In fact, the concept of ‘religion/religious’ is often set over and against the concept of the ‘temporal’ and the ‘secular’, which both suggest an outlook that is concerned solely with this world, the here and n
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5.5 Common sense and analysis

Faced with the choice between narrow substantive definitions and broad functional definitions, we should require any definition to ‘fit with broad common-sense reflection’ and ‘encompass what ordinary people mean when they talk of religion’ (Bruce, 1995, p. ix). The definition must also assist in the analysis and explanation of what is being studied. For these reasons, Steve Bruce, who is a leading sociologist of religion, opts for the following substantive defini
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5.4 A dimensional model of religion

Given the problems of devising a succinct definition of religion, some contemporary scholars have produced broader profiles of religion without claiming to identify one distinguishing characteristic. One example of this kind of approach is the seven-dimensional model of religion proposed by Ninian Smart, a specialist in the study of world religions. Smart argues that, if his model is adequate, ‘then we do not need to worry greatly about further definition of religion’ (Smart, 1989, p. 21)
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