Dumb Academic Study: "Students Who Pull All-Nighters Have Lower GPAs"

ALBANY, N.Y. — Students who rely on all-nighters to bring up their grades might want to sleep on that strategy: a new survey says those who never study all night have slightly higher GPAs than those who do.

A survey of 120 students at St. Lawrence University, a small liberal arts college in northern New York, found that students who have never pulled an all-nighter have average GPAs of 3.1, compared to 2.9 for those who have. The study, by assistant professor of psychology Pamela Thacher, is to be included in the January issue of Behavioral Sleep Medicine

Here is the problem: presumably those who are pulling the all-nighter are way behind in their studies. Those who are caught up don't have to be up all night. The real question is not to compare the grades for those who are up all night with those who aren't, but to ask what grades would those who did stay up all night get if they didn't do it. Those are two different questions.



Anonymous Keith said...

She's an assistant Prof and she can't isolate a single variable for her study?

Plus the peer reviewers and ed staff at the journal can't spot the flaw?

Barrel; scraping the bottom of...

12/15/2007 1:28 PM  

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