From A to Zzz: How Sleep Will Affect Your Finals

From A to Zzz: How Sleep Will Affect Your Finals


Can you relate to this?

I bet you can. It’s no secret that the older we get, the less sleep we catch. Nowadays, sleep is a little harder than just counting sheep, and most nights, we spend those precious hours meant for snoozing finishing up homework or cramming for tests. But as we guzzle down coffee and Redbull (and maybe drops of our tears) all night, do we ever really think about how staying up studying can actually have a negative effect on our exam scores? With finals coming up, it’s time we realize!

Quinn Fabray from Glee sobs in her car

Most of us don’t think losing sleep is as big of a deal as some make it, but did you know that sleep loss can affect your immune system, lead to increased weight gain (hello, freshman 15), intensify depression or anxiety, and cause a decrease in academic and athletic performance? Now imagine all of these new problems sleep deprivation has created, and imagine how well you’ll feel on finals week with all of them weighing on your shoulders… your odds aren’t looking so great, are they?

Robert Downey Jr. nods off and wakes up immediately

In this article, researchers found that those who considered themselves “night owls” averaged a 2.5 GPA, and as each began to sleep and wake earlier, the GPA average gradually rose to a 3.5. I don’t know about you, but one whole grade point is something most college students would sell their souls for. No need for negotiations, though—all you need is some beauty rest!

On average, college students are getting about six hours of sleep a night compared to the recommended eight to ten. Having trouble meeting your Sleep Point Average? Check out these tips on how to get those hours in (bad news, coffee addicts: no more caffeine after 2 p.m.!).

If this isn’t enough to prove that there is a correlation between sleep and your GPA, check this out. When different students of different majors, from different schools, were asked how many hours they slept and what their GPA was, this is what I found:

Cameron Diaz falls asleep at her desk

San Diego State business student: 8-9 hours with a 3.6 GPA
Cal State Fullerton art student: 6-8 hours with a 3.4 GPA
UC Riverside environmental science student: 5-6 hours with a 2.6 GPA
Cal Poly Pomona aerospace engineering student: “all over the place” with a 2.3 GPA

Want to be on the Dean’s List like our San Diego State business student? You know what to do…

If A’s on your finals aren’t a good enough reason to catch the zzz’s tonight (and it should be!) remember: you don’t want to be a victim of the Asleep at Cal Poly Pomona Facebook page. The only way to avoid that is to make sure you’re getting the full eight hours of sleep every night.

Happy Sleepin’ and good luck on finals next week, Broncos!

Disclaimer: We fully believe that zzz’s get degrees, but unfortunately, the professors at Cal Poly Pomona are under no obligation to give you an A+ just because you will be getting 8-10 hours of sleep from now on (but hey, we can dream!).