To Sleep, Perchance to Gain Creative Insight?

Trends Cogn Sci. 2004 May;8(5):191-2. doi: 10.1016/j.tics.2004.03.003.


The development of mathematical insight, the knack for discovering novel solutions to mathematical problems, might be one of the most erudite forms of learning that we can hope to achieve. However, Wagner and his colleague now report that a night of sleep after being exposed to a class of mathematical problems more than doubles the likelihood of discovering just such a novel solution.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Creativity*
  • Humans
  • Mathematics
  • Problem Solving / physiology*
  • Sleep Stages / physiology*