One of the latest researches has revealed that humans can learn new foreign words and improve their vocabulary while they sleep.
Generally, we consider sleeping to be one of the most unproductive activity but have you ever wondered how effectively it can be used? Well, in precise, by learning new words and improving your knowledge base.
As per a few researchers at the University of Bern, Switzerland, “Learning can also take place during the deep or slow-wave sleep”. One can easily grab foreign words during the slow-wave sleep mode.
While sleeping, our brain can easily encode new knowledge and can store it for a longer period of time. Researchers have bought out evidence that sleep can give a powerful effect to the memories and implants them in the previously acquired knowledge store of the brain.
Most of us have been in the opinion that it is impossible for a learning activity to take place in the sleep as it lacks a huge conscious awareness. But in reality, the sleeping brain can make multiple successful new associations.
Experiment on Learning During Daytime Sleep
Around 41 males and females underwent a consequent memory test through EEGs (Electroencephalograms), wherein their brain activity was recorded during the daytime nap. The volunteers were asked to put on their headphones wherein the researchers played a few verbal word pair recordings.
They generated the word pair in such a way that one word was an acquainted one whereas the other word was made of ‘Pseudoword’. Once they finished the nap, the volunteers had to take up a test that analyzed their sleep-formed associations.
During the test, they were given an arbitrary sample of the pseudowords. They were given a set of fake words without any translation.
Aim – Whether they volunteer could say the object that the word described could be fit into a particular box or not.
Result – The segregation of the pseudowords was much better. It was a way of testing their understanding of the words that was implanted into an unconscious mind.
The mode of deep sleep is the meritorious way for merging the memories that are formed in the period of wakefulness which is followed. As the brain goes into a deep sleep, the brain cells harmonize their activity slowly. They occur a 0.5 seconds difference between universal activity and inactivity; wherein; the stages of activity are generated as a peak on the EEGs.
The brain goes through every up and down the stage during the deep sleep. And it’s during the up state that the brain gets highly active and gets well-interconnected.
Since many years, we were aware that sleep is an important factor for the creation of memories. But previously, it was stated that the role of sleep was to organize the memories obtained during the wakefulness. Very recently, it has been proved that memory formation has been quite active during sleep time.
In short, our brains have the ability to listen to the world and even learn about it when we are not present consciously.
Now, the researchers are trying to find more ways to examine whether any information can be learnt more quickly during the stage of wakefulness, if the information was presented during the sleeping phenomenon. If it happens, it can completely change the way we train our minds to learn new things and acquire more knowledge.
In the present context, sleep learning has gained a dominant popularity across the world. Though the benefits would be limited, we have nothing to be lost during the process.