Many studies have shown that sleep improves memory performance, and that even short naps during the day are beneficial. Certain physiological components of sleep such as spindles and slow-wave-sleep are thought to be particularly important for memory consolidation. The aim of this experiment was to reveal the role of naps for hippocampus-dependent associative memory (AM) and hippocampus-independent item memory (IM) alongside their corresponding ERP old/new effects.

Participants learnt single words and word-pairs before performing an IM- and an AM-test (baseline). One group was subsequently allowed to nap (∼90 min) while the other watched DVDs (control group). Afterwards, both groups performed a final IM- and AM-test for the learned stimuli (posttest).

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