Event Abstract

One ring does not rule them all - Sleep has no critical role in implicit motor sequence learning in young and old adults

  • 1 University of Szeged, Institute of Psychology, Hungary
  • 2 University of Southern California, American Language Institute, United States
  • 3 Georgetown University, Brain and Language Lab, Department of Neuroscience, United States
  • 4 Georgetown University, Department of Psychology, United States
  • 5 The Catholic University of America, Department of Psychology, United States

Implicit skill learning underlies not only motor but also cognitive and social skills, and it therefore plays an important role from infancy to old age. The influence of sleep on skill consolidation has been a research topic of increasing interest. In this study we distinguished general skill learning from sequence-specific learning in a probabilistic implicit sequence learning task (Alternating Serial Reaction Time – ASRT Task) in young and elder adults before and after a 12-hour offline interval which did or did not contain sleep (PM-AM and AM-PM groups respectively). The results showed that general skill learning, as assessed via overall RT, improved offline in both the young and older groups, with the young group improving more than the old. However, we found no evidence that this improvement was sleep-dependent, in that there were no differences between the AM-PM and the PM-AM groups. In the case of sequence-specific learning, we did not find offline improvement in either age group for either the AM-PM or PM-AM groups, suggesting that consolidation of this kind of implicit sequence learning is not influenced by sleep.

Conference: IBRO International Workshop 2010, Pécs, Hungary, 21 Jan - 23 Jan, 2010.

Presentation Type: Poster Presentation

Topic: Cognition and behavior

Citation: Janacsek K, Londe Z, Ullman MT, Howard DV, Howard Jr JH and Németh D (2010). One ring does not rule them all - Sleep has no critical role in implicit motor sequence learning in young and old adults. Front. Neurosci. Conference Abstract: IBRO International Workshop 2010. doi: 10.3389/conf.fnins.2010.10.00157

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Received: 30 Apr 2010; Published Online: 30 Apr 2010.

* Correspondence: Karolina Janacsek, University of Szeged, Institute of Psychology, Szeged, Hungary, janacsekkarolina@gmail.com