Saturday, November 22, 2008

Sleep helps people learn complicated tasks

Sleep helps people learn complicated tasks (11/21/2008):
"Sleep helps the mind learn complicated tasks and helps people recover learning they otherwise thought they had forgotten over the course of a day, research at the University of Chicago shows.

Using a test that involved learning to play video games, researchers showed for the first time that people who had 'forgotten' how to perform a complex task 12 hours after training found that those abilities were restored after a night's sleep.

'Sleep consolidated learning by restoring what was lost over the course of a day following training and by protecting what was learned against subsequent loss,' said Howard Nusbaum, Professor of Psychology at the University of Chicago, and a researcher in the study. 'These findings suggest that sleep has an important role in learning generalized skills in stabilizing and protecting memory.'"

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