Video: Did Not Sleep? Guilty! - Research
People who do not get enough sleep are ready to confess to any atrocities. Not even perfect. These are the conclusions reached by the authors of a new joint study of two American universities.
Our teachers were right when they forced me to cram important information so persistently that it “bounced off my teeth”, even when “wake you up at night”. Participants in the experiment, Kimberly Fenn of the University of Michigan and Elizabeth Loftus of the University of California, were sorely lacking in unconditional confidence in their answers.
88 tested students were asked to complete a voluminous task requiring high concentration and long-term perseverance. And at the same time it was forbidden to press the Escape button (which supposedly leads to data loss). During the two-day experiment, one group of participants fully rested at night, while the other was awake. Upon completion of the assignment, all test subjects were asked to sign a progress report. In particular, it said that on the first day the participant pressed a prohibited key.
During the experiment, none of the subjects actually pressed the forbidden button. It was all the more interesting for scientists to observe the reaction of students. In the group of sleeping people, only 8 people decided to sign a paper to close the issue. And after active persuasion, the number of those who agreed increased to 16. Meanwhile, in the group of participants who did not sleep enough, 22 people immediately signed a report, and after the repeated accusation, even 30 people out of 44 did so.
“This is the first direct evidence that sleep deprivation increases the likelihood of false confessions of violations that the person has not even committed,” says Professor Fenn. "We have taken an important step towards understanding the role of sleep deprivation in the process of giving false confessions, and therefore raised the difficult question of whether, for example, interrogation of restless suspects is permissible if sleep deprivation directly questions both guilt and innocence of a person." …
Unfortunately, the effect of research can be twofold: while it will be easier for innocent people to defend their integrity, it will also become easier for the guilty to confront serious charges. In addition, the naughty youths and adolescents, armed with this knowledge, will now be able to justify themselves to their parents by saying that they confessed their childhood intrigues over cats only with lack of sleep.