Background & Aim
- 3 hypotheses;
- (1) There will be a significant association between REM sleep and dreaming.
- (2) There will be a significant positive correlation between the estimate of the duration of dreams and the length of time spent in REM sleep.
- (3) There will be a significant association between the pattern of eye movement and the context of the dream.
1 of 7
Method, Procedure and Controls
- A controlled investigation.
- 9 participants: 7 adult males and 2 adult females.
- 5 were studied intensively, while only a small amount of data was collected on the other 4 just to back up the findings.
- The participants were studies under controlled laboratory conditions, whereby they reported to the lab just before their usual bedtime.
- They had been asked to eat normally but to avoid caffeine or alcohol on the day of the study.
- The participants went to bed in a quiet, dark room.
- An electroencephalograph (EEG) was used to amplify and record the signals of electrodes which were attatched to the participants' eyes to record electrical changes caused by eye movement.
- 2 or 3 further electrodes were attatched to the scalp to record brain activity which indicated the participant's depth of sleep.
- At various times during the night (both during REM and NREM sleep) the participants were awakened to test their dream recall.
- The participants were woken up by a loud doorbell ringing close to their bed.
2 of 7
Method, Procedure and Controls Continued
- The participant then had to speak into a tape recorder near the bed.
- They were instructed to first state whether or not they had been dreaming and then, if they could, to report the content of the dream.
3 of 7
- 192 awakenings in total.
- 153 dream reports.
- 39 no dream reports.
- 160 awakenings,
- 11 dream reports.
- 149 no dream reports.
4 of 7
51 Tests - woken after 5 mins REM
- Correct = 45
- Incorrect = 6
60 Tests - woken after 15 mins REM
- Correct = 47
- Incorrect = 13
5 of 7
- There did appear to be some relationship between the dream content and the type of eye movements.
- For example, periods of pure vertical or horizontal eye movements were rare, but when the participant was woken up after a series of vertical eye movements they reported dreams
- In the only instance of horizontal eye movements, the dreamer was watching two people throwing tomatoes at each other.
6 of 7
Conclusions & Implications
- The research suggests that there is a link between REM sleep and dreaming.
- This study also supports the idea that dreams can be studied in an objective way, opening up many areas of research.
7 of 7