The Impact of Sleep on Learning and Behavior in Adolescents

George Mitru
January 1, 2002

Many adolescents are experiencing a reduction in sleep as a consequence of a variety of behavioral factors (e.g., academic workload, social and employment opportunities), even though scientific evidence suggests that the biological need for sleep increases during maturation. Consequently, the ability to effectively interact with peers while learning and processing novel information may be diminished in many sleep-deprived adolescents. Furthermore, sleep deprivation may account for reductions in cognitive efficiency in many children and adolescents with special education needs.