The Effects Of Sleep Deprivation On Academic Performance

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Running head: THE EFFECTS OF SLEEP DEPRIVATION ON ACADEMIC
PERFORMANCE
2
Abstract
Sleep is an important biological necessity that all people need to maintain a healthy lifestyle. It helps people work at an optimum level and is critical for brain functioning, helping with all the cognitive functions such as memory, learning, decision making, and critical thinking. This makes sleep extremely important for academic performance. However, research shows that not everyone is getting enough sleep to function properly, especially college students. Researchers state that sleep deprivation is one of the main reasons college students receive low academic scores aside from stress which contributes to sleep deprivation. The purpose of this research
proposal
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Therefore, sleep deprivation is necessary for keeping these cognitive functions at an optimal level for performance wherever the person may be, whether it be at work, home, or even school. Unfortunately, not everyone receives adequate amounts of sleep in order to function properly throughout the day. These poor performances as a result of poor sleep quality and sleep deprivation is especially evident among college students.
Since college students have such busy work, school, and social schedules to keep up with, their sleep cycles become negatively affected by it. They tend to have irregular sleep-cycles depending on the day of the week and report dissatisfaction with sleep as a result of poor sleep quality (Gilbert & Weaver, 2010).
Causes of Sleep Deprivation
There are many causes as to why sleep deprivation occurs in college students. In a study done by Ahrberg and his colleagues (2012), they found that different modes of stress affect the circadian sleep rhythms of the students. OF these modes of stress, stress from work and school are the most prevalent. A working student can feel stress from going to school, then working to hard at their job, and then having to come home to do more schoolwork until the early hours
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For example, their participants tended to have prolonged sleep during the weekends because of their loss of sleep during the weekdays because of school (Medeiros et al., 2001). Since humans have the tendency
Running head: THE EFFECTS OF SLEEP DEPRIVATION ON ACADEMIC
PERFORMANCE
5 to continue sleeping late as the result of their human circadian rhythm, sleep deprivation is further worsened (Medeiros et al., 2001). As stated before by Ahrberg and his colleagues (2012), stress can also worsen the desynchronization of circadian rhythms and make people moody and cause them to not be as alert as they should be.
In a similar study done by Kelly, W. and two other colleagues (2001), they also found that sleep deprivation greatly affects a student’s ability to perform well in their classes. This is evident through the students’ GPA’s. Kelly and colleagues reported that people who slept 9 hours or more in a 24-hour period had significantly higher GPA’s than short sleepers who sleep 6 hours or less in a 24-hour period. These short sleepers also tended to show signs of

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