Presentation Title

PSYC 2110: Introduction to Research Methods

Abstract

Sleep deprivation interacts with time of day (circadian phase) to impair vigilance, reaction time, and higher cognitive processes. Previous research has shown that bright light, particularly at night, can have an immediate positive influence on subjective arousal, enhance alertness, and cognitive performance. For this assignment, students were supplied with hypothetical data that closely resembled data collected in 2010 for a study investigating countermeasures to drowsy driving. The hypothetical data represented RTs, collected using a psychomotor vigilance task, of fifty healthy, young volunteers who were randomly assigned to a night of sleep deprivation, or a night of sleep. RT was assessed for all participants under both bright light and dim light conditions on separate days. It was hypothesized that, overall, RT would be faster under the bright light condition than the dim light condition. RT would also be faster for participants who were rested compared to participants who were sleep deprived. In addition, we predicted that when participants were sleep deprived, bright light would improve RT compared to dim light.

Class Research Coaches: Taryn Coleman and Devon DeVries

Department

Psychology

Faculty Advisor

Denise Weisgerber

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PSYC 2110: Introduction to Research Methods

Sleep deprivation interacts with time of day (circadian phase) to impair vigilance, reaction time, and higher cognitive processes. Previous research has shown that bright light, particularly at night, can have an immediate positive influence on subjective arousal, enhance alertness, and cognitive performance. For this assignment, students were supplied with hypothetical data that closely resembled data collected in 2010 for a study investigating countermeasures to drowsy driving. The hypothetical data represented RTs, collected using a psychomotor vigilance task, of fifty healthy, young volunteers who were randomly assigned to a night of sleep deprivation, or a night of sleep. RT was assessed for all participants under both bright light and dim light conditions on separate days. It was hypothesized that, overall, RT would be faster under the bright light condition than the dim light condition. RT would also be faster for participants who were rested compared to participants who were sleep deprived. In addition, we predicted that when participants were sleep deprived, bright light would improve RT compared to dim light.

Class Research Coaches: Taryn Coleman and Devon DeVries