Jenn Worsfold

Research Project

School Start Times Impact on Students’ Wellbeing


I am a 21-year-old ProCom student, and I am a person who has always struggled with 8 am classes. I enjoy sleeping in late and going to bed in the early hours. I am passionate about advocating for students who are not a morning type and are impacted by early start times. Due to my own experience as a commuting student, I’ve researched the effects that early start times can have on students and feel connected to the issue.

Research Summary

Recent studies have highlighted the disadvantages of early start times. Early education times lead to a loss of 2 hours of sleep per day from students ages 14-24 (Evans et al., 2017). Many studies have looked at the correlation between poor sleep and students; a study found that “over a third of students are chronically sleep deprived, obtaining, on average, less than 7 h sleep per night on study days” (Norbury & Evans, 2019). The irregular sleep schedule between school days and rest days leads to students getting less sleep during the week and catching up on rest during rest days, which leads to students feeling groggy and unrested. Another study found that students lose, on average, 6 hours of sleep over 5 early mornings, and most compensated for this by getting extra sleep on the non-early mornings it wasn’t able to account for the missing hours of sleep fully. (Gaultney, 2010). Sleep is crucial to maintaining proper health its crucial for cognitive processes, including memory retention, problem-solving, and emotional control (Gaultney, 2010). When people continuously don’t get enough sleep, it can negatively affect their mental health; it is linked to increased rates of anxiety and depression in young people. A study by Norbury and Evans in 2019 found that poor sleep increased anxiety in their participants, and participants showed a higher risk of developing a common mental health disorder. This study was confirmed further by a study in 2015, which found that “students with excessive daytime sleepiness had twice the odds of CPDs (common psychiatric disorders) compared to those without daytime sleepiness” (Haregu, 2015). Lack of sleep can strongly impact a student’s mental health, and early mornings deprive students of the sleep they need.

Research Poster

Lightning Talk

Scroll to Top