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Dement and Kleitman (1957) REM and dreams . The relation of eye movements during sleep to dream activity: An objective method for the study of dreaming Journal of Experimental Psychology 53 pp339 - 46 . psychlotron.org.uk Mark Souter. Dement and Kleitman (1957) REM and dreams.

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dement and kleitman 1957 rem and dreams

Dement and Kleitman (1957) REM and dreams

The relation of eye movements during sleep to dream activity: An objective method for the study of dreaming

Journal of Experimental Psychology 53 pp339 - 46

psychlotron.org.uk Mark Souter

dement and kleitman 1957 rem and dreams2
Dement and Kleitman (1957) REM and dreams

introduction

  • long standing point of interest
  • tradition of dreams as prediction
  • tradition of dreams as subconscious mind
  • D&K => breakthrough re frequency & length of dreams
  • also relationship of dreams to health

psychlotron.org.uk Mark Souter

dement and kleitman 1957 rem and dreams3
Dement and Kleitman (1957) REM and dreams

the study: starting points

  • D&K noticed rapid eye movement (REM)
  • apparent connection with dreaming
  • 3 Qs
  • 1 does dream recall correlate to REM?
  • 2 is there a correlation between REM duration and estimates of dream length
  • 3 is REM connected to content of dreams?

psychlotron.org.uk Mark Souter

dement and kleitman 1957 rem and dreams4
Dement and Kleitman (1957) REM and dreams

the study: subjects

  • 9 adults: 7M 2F
  • 5 studied intensively
  • 4 minimal data to confirm data on 5

psychlotron.org.uk Mark Souter

dement and kleitman 1957 rem and dreams5
Dement and Kleitman (1957) REM and dreams

the study: procedure

  • S report to lab before bedtime
  • asked to eat normally BUT avoid caffeine / alcohol on day of study
  • 2 electrodes near eye (record muscle activity)
  • 2 or 3 others record brain activity
  • electroencephalograph (EEG)

psychlotron.org.uk Mark Souter

dement and kleitman 1957 rem and dreams6
Dement and Kleitman (1957) REM and dreams

the study: procedure

  • woken at various times to test dream recall
  • bell woke S - they recorded dream recall on tape [why?]
  • (to avoid experimenter effects)
  • waking times:
    • 2x random;
    • 1x at whim of experimenter (!);
    • 1x 3xREM + 3xnREM;
    • 1x random (told only during REM)

psychlotron.org.uk Mark Souter

dement and kleitman 1957 rem and dreams7
Dement and Kleitman (1957) REM and dreams

the study: procedure

  • 'dream' only counted if recall clear
  • return to sleep <5 mins
  • 9 S studied over 61 nights: 351 awakenings (av 5.7 per night)
  • Subjects awakened as soon as four predominant pattern of movement had persisted for at least 1 minute

psychlotron.org.uk Mark Souter

dement and kleitman 1957 rem and dreams8
Dement and Kleitman (1957) REM and dreams

results: REM patterns

  • all subjects showed REM every night
  • REM had regular pattern
  • pattern varied per individual
  • av gap 90 mins - norm 70-104 mins
  • duration of REM 3 - 50 mins

psychlotron.org.uk Mark Souter

dement and kleitman 1957 rem and dreams9
Dement and Kleitman (1957) REM and dreams

results: REM–EEG patterns

  • REM correlates to EEG patterns
  • REM EEG - low voltage fast pattern

results: REM–dream reports

  • reports of dreams correlates strongly to REM sleep
  • few dreams reported in non-REM sleep

psychlotron.org.uk Mark Souter

dement and kleitman 1957 rem and dreams11
Dement and Kleitman (1957) REM and dreams

results: deep sleep - dream reports

  • in deep sleep (indicated by EEG) Ss reported confusion
  • reported thinking that they had been dreaming …
  • but could not describe dreams
  • often reported strong emotions

psychlotron.org.uk Mark Souter

dement and kleitman 1957 rem and dreams12
Dement and Kleitman (1957) REM and dreams

results: dream duration – REM estimates

  • woken 5 or 15 mins in REM and asked to estimate duration of dream
  • strong correlation between estimates and REM times
  • i.e. most subjects could usually estimate times accurately

psychlotron.org.uk Mark Souter

dement and kleitman 1957 rem and dreams14
Dement and Kleitman (1957) REM and dreams

results: eye movement - dream content

  • a) vertical eye movement > operating a hoist
  • b) Horizontal > throwing tomatoes
  • c) Both vertical & horizontal > talking to people close to them (friends)
  • d) Very little or no movement > staring at fixed objects.

psychlotron.org.uk Mark Souter

dement and kleitman 1957 rem and dreams15
Dement and Kleitman (1957) REM and dreams

discussion: the study

  • well controlled lab experiment
  • small sample
  • (may be less important because study of physiological condition rather than psychological)
  • breakthrough in dream research
  • close correlation REM - dreams
  • nature of relationship remains unclear

psychlotron.org.uk Mark Souter

dement and kleitman 1957 rem and dreams16
Dement and Kleitman (1957) REM and dreams

discussion: later studies

  • Goodenough et al
  • self reported hi/lo dreamers
  • hi dreamers - many REM-dream links
  • lo dreamers - much lower REM-dream link rates
  •  highly variable

psychlotron.org.uk Mark Souter

dement and kleitman 1957 rem and dreams17
Dement and Kleitman (1957) REM and dreams

discussion

  • Dement and Wolpert
  • tried to influence dreams
  • sprayed water, flashed lights, played tones
  • some influence on a few subjects
  • people blind from birth and newborns show REM

psychlotron.org.uk Mark Souter

dement and kleitman 1957 rem and dreams18
Dement and Kleitman (1957) REM and dreams

discussion: variations in D&K’s results

  • the following tables indicate variations between subjects
  • they use data on the 5 main subjects
  • variations do not fatally undermine D&K’s study, but should serve to show that we need to be cautious about generalisations!

psychlotron.org.uk Mark Souter

slide19

DN

PM

KC

IR

WD

psychlotron.org.uk Mark Souter