would like to thank all of the professors who were involved in the preparation
of this study; especially Dr. Maria Brisk, without whose assistance I would ever
have reached this goal. Also Dr. James Flood for his support, and Dr. William
Nolan for his advice on the statistical part. My most sincere thanks to Dr.
William Smith who encouraged me to continue my studies.
also thankful to my wife, Ixa, and my daughters, Yiara and Ixita; and my
brothers, Javier and Melvin, for their support, patience and understanding.
thanks to Winifred Harraway, who helped me through the process of typing day by
but not least, I would like to thank God for giving me the wisdom and patience
to put this dissertation together.