Dement and Kleitman Summary Sheet

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  • Created on: 08-05-10 12:53
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Name of study: The Relation of Eye Movements during Sleep and Dream Activity: An Objective Method for the Study of
Author(s): Dement & Kleitman
Approach: Biological Approach
Background information (what theories/issues of previous research is the study based on?)
REM ­ often referred to as paradoxical sleep.
At this stage of sleep, the brain is as active as when we are awake.
This is a stage closely related to dreaming.
Brain waves are the most active but the rest of the body is paralyzed.
At stages 1 & 2 ­ Reduction in the heart rate and muscle tension. Similar to hypnotic stage. Easily woken.
Stage 2 is a little bit deeper in sleep, but still easily woken.
Stages 3 & 4 ­ large slow waves of sleep. Not responsive to external events, difficult to wake people in this stage.
The deepest sleep is stage 4.
At this stage of sleep we have very low metabolic activity and it is difficult to wake someone up.
However important sounds do evoke a response e.g. a baby crying.
The 5 stages form a cycle.
The cycles are repeated throughout the night.
Each cycle lasts approximately 90mins.
The longer we sleep the time in REM increases.
What were the aims and hypotheses of this study?
Aim: To investigate the relationship between eye movements and dreaming to demonstrate that dream experiences and
REM are two parts of the same thing.
1. There will be a significant association between REM sleep and dreaming.
2. There will be a significant positive correlation between length of eye movement and estimate of dream length.
3. There will be a significant association between the pattern of eye movement and the context of the dream.
What were the IV+DV / IV's? (where appropriate e.g. in experimental research only)
IV: in REM or NREM.
DV: Dream duration and content of the dream.
What research method was used?
A lab experiment and self report.
List the advantages and disadvantages of the method used?
Advantages Disadvantages
Fully controlled ­ can control for extraneous variables, Demand characteristics ­ guessing the aim of the study.
cause-and-effect relationships can be established, we can Not testing the true aim threatens validity.
be sure the DV is caused by manipulation of the IV.

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Easy to replicate, test reliability and test consistency of the Low in ecological validity.
Describe the sample and how it was gathered:
9 adults were used.
7 male, 2 female.
5 studied intensively and 4 used to confirm findings.
Outline the procedure:
The participants were studied under controlled laboratory conditions, whereby they reported to the laboratory just
before their usual bedtime.
They had been asked to eat normally but to avoid caffeine or alcohol on the day of the study.…read more

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The four patterns that prompted an awakening were:
(a) mainly vertical eye movements
(b) mainly horizontal eye movements
(c) both vertical and horizontal eye movements
(d) very little or no eye movement.
List the different conditions: (if any were used)
They had a control group whereby there was 20 uninformed participants.
They had the actual participants ­ 9 of them.
What controls were used by the researcher?
Standardised procedure to ensure reliability.…read more

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Hailing a car from the let
Mixture of Horizontal and Vertical 21 dreams Looking for something or someone
Talking to a group of people
What kind of data was gathered? (qualitative/quantitative)
Quantitative: Number of dreams recalled.
Qualitative: Descriptions of the dreams recalled.
What were the conclusions of the study?
The results strongly support the connection between REM and dreaming.
Hypothesis 1 ­ there is a strong positive correlation found between dream recall and length of time in REM.…read more

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This could make the findings more valid due to
more information.
Ecological validity
It is low in ecological validity. The participants weren't in their usual sleep environment as they slept in a sleep lab. They
were woken several times throughout the night and asked to recall their dreams. They also had electrodes attached to
them. This means the results are not generalisable to real life sleep dreaming behaviour. And this questions the practical
applications aspect.…read more

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Give two alternative ways of conducting the study and suggest any changes that might occur in the findings and
any implications of the changes (e.g. strengths or limitations)
Problem Change Implications Effects on Findings
It is low in ecological To improve the Higher in ecological Low levels of control Participants results
validity.…read more


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