Gender's Effect on Hours of Sleep
Jeff S. and Michael H.
Type of Investigation
Parts of the Experiment
Independent Variable: Our independent variable was gender.
Experimental group: males and females, from sophomores to seniors
Constants: Both groups that were compared went to CHS last year, and both groups ranged from current sophomores through seniors.
Data Table (Average Amount of Sleep)
Gender does not affect the number of sleep hours per night during the school year. Though the data showed some trends of males having more sleep than females, it turned out to be inconclusive therefore invalidating our hypothesis. The mean for males (6.6875 hours) was greater than mean for females (6.13389 hours), which suggested that males slept more than females. The t-test result of 0.03 also suggested that the data was significantly different because it was less than 0.05. However, after graphing the male and female average hours of sleep with 2 SEM error bars, the error bars had large overlapping areas, which suggested no significant difference between male average sleep hours compared to females. Due to this conflicting evidence, it was determined that the data collected was inconclusive. The ranges of the male and female datasets were also significant, with 2.5 hours and four hours, respectively. All the male error bars for range were included within the female error bars for range, suggesting no significant difference in data. In a study conducted by Kathyrn A Lee, Ph.D; Geoffrey Mcenany, Ph.D; and Delois Weekes, Ph.D, it was also found that there was no significant difference in sleep between males and females in early adolescents, with a mean of 9 hours, and a median of 9.1 hours with a variability of ± 102 minutes. Many differences in lifestyle can potentially cause differences in the amount of sleep for both males and females including school activities and workload, as well as personal preferences. (Lee, Mcenany, Weekes). To conclude, due to many differences between males and females in lifestyle and personal choice, as well as highly variable data, the data from this experiment is inconclusive.
Sources of Inaccuracies/Errors
Yarcheski, A and Mahon, N.E. A study of sleep during adolescence. J Pediatr Nurs. 1994; 9: 357–367
(Lab Directions, Martin)