Better sleep is associated with improved academic success

Jun 10, 2009

Getting more high-quality sleep is associated with better academic performance. according to new research. The positive relationship is especially relevant to performance in math.

Results indicate that higher math scores were related to greater sleep quality, less awakenings and increased sleep efficiency. Higher English and history scores were associated with less difficulty awakening. Increased sleep-onset latency over the weekend was associated with worse .

According to principal investigator Jennifer C. Cousins, PhD, postdoctoral fellow at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, it was surprising that although more and better sleep produced overall improvements, different types of sleep measures were related to different types of functioning.

"Sleep deficits cause problems for adolescents, but students differ in their personal resources and in how chaotic their sleep-wake schedules are," said Cousins. "The more regular and predictable their sleep is, the better they are likely to do when confronted with short-term sleep deficits. Therefore, participants with better sleep overall may be affected differently in a sleep condition compared to those who have a more varying sleep/wake schedule."

The study involved data from 56 adolescents (34 female) between the ages of 14 and 18 years who had complaints of daytime sleepiness and or insufficient sleep at night. Participants reported their subject grades and overall academic standing. Sleep was measured objectively with actigraphy and subjectively through sleep diaries.

Higher math scores were related to less night awakenings, less time spent in bed, higher sleep efficiency and great sleep quality; there was also a trend for decreased sleep onset latency (SOL). Higher scores in English were associated with less nighttime awakenings. Increased SOL during the weekends was related to worse academic performance.

According to Cousins, poor sleep and poor sleep habits are associated with substance use, emotional problems, cognitive problems and a general decline in daily functioning. Sleep education may be a preventative tool to help increase awareness of the importance of sleep and of the negative consequences of poor sleep.

Authors of the study state that results provide overwhelming evidence of the importance of sleep during a period of development that is critical in adolescents and highlight the importance of the development of sleep intervention programs for students in order to improve existing problems with sleep and daily functioning.

Source: American Academy of Medicine (news : web)

Explore further: Oncology fellows, clinicians report similar burnout

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Night shift nurses more likely to have poor sleep habits

Jun 11, 2007

Nurses who work the night shift are more likely to have poor sleep habits, a practice that can increase the likelihood of committing serious errors that can put the safety of themselves as well as their patients at risk, ...

Sleep problems may affect a person's diet

Jun 11, 2007

Sleep problems can influence a person’s diet. Those who don’t get enough sleep are less likely to cook their own meals and, instead, opt to eat fast food. It is the lack of nutritional value of this restaurant-prepared ...

Recommended for you

Oncology fellows, clinicians report similar burnout

2 hours ago

(HealthDay)—U.S. oncology fellows may underestimate the workload they will experience once they enter practice, according to research published online July 21 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

Tentative deal reached on VA reform

3 hours ago

(AP)—The chairmen of the House and Senate Veterans Affairs committees have reached a tentative agreement on a plan to fix a veterans' health care system scandalized by long patient wait times and falsified records covering ...

Study recommends inmate immunity test

Jul 25, 2014

(AP)—Federal experts are recommending that California test inmates for immunity to a sometimes fatal soil-borne fungus before incarcerating them at two Central Valley state prisons where the disease has killed nearly three ...

User comments : 1

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

Truth
1 / 5 (1) Jun 10, 2009
My math teacher in 1968, Sister Evarista, of St. Saviours Catholic School in Brooklyn, told us the exact same thing...and she didn't spend a dime on "phisticated" research....hope my tax dollars weren't used to study the obvious...