Creativity and habitual sleep patterns among art and social sciences undergraduate students

Neta Ram-Vlasov, Orna Tzischinsky, Amit Green, Tamar Shochat

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study aimed to explore whether creativity and visual arts practice are associated with altered sleep structure, patterns, and quality. Fourteen visual arts and 16 social sciences undergraduate students participated in this home-based study. Sleep structure was measured by Polysomnography (PSG), habitual sleep patterns were monitored by Actigraphy and assessed by the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI) and the Munich Chronotype Questionnaire (MCTQ), and creativity was measured by the Torrance Tests of Creative Thinking (TTCT). Results indicated that for the entire sample, higher visual creativity was associated with higher sleep disturbance, daytime dysfunction, and lower overall sleep quality, and that higher verbal creativity was associated with longer sleep duration and later sleep midpoint. Group comparisons showed that art students reported increased sleep disturbance and daytime dysfunction, and later sleep midpoint and chronotype, and exhibited longer sleep duration compared with the nonart students. This observational and correlative study establishes multidimensional relationships between creativity and sleep. Possible explanations for our findings are offered, acknowledging psychobiological mechanisms that are known to regulate both creativity and sleep.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)270-277
Number of pages8
JournalPsychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1 Aug 2016


  • Chronotype
  • Creative thinking
  • Sleep duration
  • Sleep quality
  • Sleep timing

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Visual Arts and Performing Arts
  • Applied Psychology


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