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Open Access Publications from the University of California

The Effects Of Sleep On Implicit And Explicit Motor Skill Sequence Learning And Task Integration: A Literature Review And Pilot Study

  • Author(s): Kawaii-Bogue, Babe
  • et al.

Various studies have been conducted on implicit (unconscious) and explicit (conscious) motor skill sequence learning by means of serial reaction time tasks in order to understand the two learning systems in the human brain (Schimidtke & Heuer, 1996; Stickgold, 2003; Ivry, 2003). Although the effects of implicit learning, bimodal integration of tasks (task integration) and sleep on implicit motor skill learning have been explored in various combination, all three have yet to be studied in one research design. We conducted a pilot study in an attempt to investigate how these three mechanisms contribute to the implicit learning phenomenon. Results revealed that explicit sequence learners have overall quicker reaction times and more accurate responses. We also found a lower percentage of implicit learning during the less complex sequence tasks. Subsequent tests found that sleep had a significant effect on explicit sequence learning, but no significant effect on implicit sequence learning.

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