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Professor Offers Students Higher Grade For More Sleep

Bessesen notes that some medical school programs require student doctors to sleep more to prevent accidents.

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A graduate from Columbia University's School of Engineering sleeps during the university's commencement ceremony in New York, May 16, 2012. VOA

No amount of lecturing seems to persuade students to get more sleep.

But one professor uses bait they can’t resist.

Michael Scullin teaches the science of sleep to psychology students at Baylor University in Waco, Texas. He lectures about physical and mental health problems caused by a lack of sleep. Those problems include difficulty focusing and controlling one’s emotions, and increased risk of disease.

“When you are at your most sleep deprived is when you are least likely to be able to judge how sleepy you are, and how much that sleepiness is impacting you,” Scullin says.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advises adults to get at least seven hours of sleep a night to stay healthy, but more and more Americans report getting fewer than six hours of sleep per night.

His students seemed to enjoy the class, Scullin says. But when he asked if they were getting more sleep after what they learned in class, most of them said no.

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A student sleeps in the hallway of Hall Memorial Building on the campus of Gallaudet University in Washington, Oct. 6, 2006. VOA

So Scullin came up with a plan to get his students to sleep more: He offered them extra points on their final exam, the most important test in the class.

The plan worked better than Scullin expected. Students who slept more performed better in two different classes, and Scullin published his findings in two academic publications last November.

How did the study work?

Scullin started the experiment with his psychology students. He told them that if they agreed to sleep at least eight hours a night for the five nights before the final exam, they would get several extra credit points. But if they agreed to take part in the study and failed to get the required amount of sleep, they would lose points on the exam. The students would wear special devices that recorded their sleep data.

Only eight out of the 18 total students in that first group agreed to take part in the experiment. Yet all the students who took part performed better on the exam than those who did not, even before the extra credit points were added. On average, they earned about five points more on the exam.

Scullin decided to repeat the study with another group of 16 design students. He chose not to punish students who failed to sleep the full eight hours per night, and got the same results.

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Don’t consume caffeinated drinks less than six hours before you go to sleep. Pixabay

Daniel Bessesen, as associate director of the Anschutz Health and Wellness Center at the University of Colorado, researches sleep. He says Scullin’s study supports the idea that sleep helps academic performance while students who cram — or stay up the night before the test trying to memorize the material — are likely worse off.

While Scullin’s study fits in with other sleep research, Bessesen says for it to be more scientific, the two groups should have been studying the same subject and taking the same test. In addition, students should have been randomly chosen for sleeping or staying awake.

How to get people to sleep more

Scullin and Bessesen offer some advice on how to get more sleep each night:

  • Parents, try to get enough sleep to role model good habits to children. Bessesen notes that some medical school programs require student doctors to sleep more to prevent accidents.
  • Avoid looking at electronics before you fall asleep.
  • Don’t consume caffeinated drinks less than six hours before you go to sleep.
  • Try to go to sleep at the same time every night.

Also Read: New Sleeping Pill Can Help Patients Wake up in Response to Threat

  • If you are lying in bed and cannot calm your mind, get out of bed and spend five to 10 minutes writing down all of your thoughts.
  • If you wake up in the middle of the night and cannot fall back asleep, do not turn on the lights! Instead, get out of bed and go into another room. Wait there until you feel tired. (VOA)

Next Story

JNU – A Hotbed of Evil Agendas And Propaganda

The series of disgusting incidents at JNU and other educational institutions in the past have “clearly revealed” that educated people can act like unscrupulous rascals

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JNU
Deepika Padukone rushed to JNU. What is shocking is without an iota of guilt, such public figures shared the stage with such a group of people who has earned notoriety for sympathizing with bloodthirsty terrorists and inciting the violence.

BY SALIL GEWALI

Blatant duplicity, partisanship, arrogance, and terrors are what all have been desecrating the very sacred seat of academia.
Does anyone have the courage to unmask this open depravity in academic institutions like JNU?

The first week of this New Year has brought before us a devious drama enacted by a group of students at JNU. The news spread like wildfire in no time. Now, after a few days of deep investigation, the Delhi police have come up with evidence which is just the opposite of what was vehemently set forth by certain media people and columnists at the beginning. Without a very serious thought and possible contrary outcome one journalist ranted — “who killed Gandhi can also kill students”. He was spitting venom against all those who believe in patriotic values. No denying, the father of the nation was killed by Nathuram Godse and he was hanged on 15 Nov. 1949 for his unpardonable sin. Is it not total “stupidity” to blame the entire associations/families with which Godse was associated? A son is a drug addict, can we blame the parents or entire family, and also his ancestors and clans? Prince Andrew of England is allegedly found to be involved in a series of sexual misconduct. Can we now mindlessly blame and malign the image of the whole Buckingham Palace and Duke of Edinburgh..? But in India so-called journalists “reserve their right” to criticize, ridicule those all who show concerns for the Nation and work for its integrity.

 Incidentally, while the grievous injuries of the JNUSU president Aishe Ghosh switched from right hand to the left hand, albeit mirror image.., it was not the “comedy of errors” of JNU. But, as the administrative machinery of the entire University has continuously been trampled upon and disrupted, I daresay, it is a “tragedy of the academy” now. Here the academy not for the excellence but for the free-thinking for the “worse”! And, what do you call it when all such outrageous vandalism and brutalities by the students with particular leanings are “defended”? Is it not a very dangerous trend and unbecoming of any dignified institutions of higher studies? Mere a few screams of “false victimhood”, vis-à-vis vandalism, have drawn the attention of the celebrities directly from Bollywood. Deepika Padukone rushed to JNU. What is shocking is without an iota of guilt, such public figures shared the stage with such a group of people who has earned notoriety for sympathizing with bloodthirsty terrorists and inciting the violence.

JNU
The first week of this New Year has brought before us a devious drama enacted by a group of students at JNU.

Needless to say, over the years we have noticed that the “support” comes with a vengeance if the outcry of protests has the overtone of hostility and “treason”. Another actress Swara Bhaskar thanked Pakistani people for support for the JNU cause. What does it mean when the responsible citizens make the mockery of the country’s sovereignty? Yes, these all unpatriotically vicious actors, actresses and intellectual elites are the role models for our youths these days. Just be serious and think about what kind of thoughts our children will develop on their minds and what we can expect from them for the nation.

JNU
Another actress Swara Bhaskar thanked Pakistani people for support for the JNU cause.

The series of disgusting incidents at JNU and other educational institutions in the past have “clearly revealed” that educated people can act like unscrupulous rascals, senselessly inciting the violence and terrors. For some of the political leaders, JNU crises have come as opportunities to destabilize the country or cause misunderstanding and division among various communities. If we believe some of the articles by certain senior journalists, it can be well concluded that “education” does not always make one sane and civilized. Blatant duplicity, partisanship, arrogance, and terrors are what all have been desecrating the very sacred seat of academia. Who all are responsible for this depraved mess? Does anyone have the courage to unmask this open depravity in academia and society? Is it not time to say enough is enough?

ALSO READ: Researchers Develop Machine Keeping Human Livers Alive For a Week Outside Body

Salil Gewali is a well-known writer and author of ‘Great minds on India’. Twitter: @SGewali