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SCI 82 — The Science of Sleep and Dreams

Quarter: Spring
Day(s): Tuesdays
Course Format: Live Online (About Formats)
Duration: 5 weeks
Date(s): May 7—Jun 4
Time: 7:00—8:50 pm (PT)
Refund Deadline: May 9
Unit: 1
Grade Restriction: No letter grade
Tuition: $360
Instructor(s): Rafael Pelayo
Class Recording Available: Yes
Status: Open
ACCESS THE SYLLABUS » (subject to change)
Live Online(About Formats)
7:00—8:50 pm (PT)
May 7—Jun 4
5 weeks
Refund Date
May 9
1 Unit
Grade Restriction
No letter grade
Rafael Pelayo
ACCESS THE SYLLABUS » (subject to change)
William Dement, often referred to as the "Father of Sleep Medicine,” established the original “Sleep and Dreams” course at Stanford in 1971. At the time, it was the first of its kind in the world; today, it is just as significant as ever. Drawing inspiration from the renowned course still offered on Stanford’s campus today, this experience will provide an overview of the fascinating realm of sleep and dreams while exploring the latest advancements in sleep science.

The course will cover a wide range of topics related to sleep science and its impact on our lives, including sleep stages and circadian rhythms, the characteristics of healthy sleep, and the factors that influence sleep duration and quality. We will also cover the physiological and neurological processes that underlie sleep, such as brain activity, neurotransmitters, and the mechanisms that regulate sleep-wake cycles. We will scrutinize the nature of dreams, delving into diverse theories and perspectives on their significance. Finally, we will identify and explore common sleep disorders, such as insomnia, sleep apnea, narcolepsy, and parasomnias, along with their symptoms, diagnoses, and treatment options. The course will empower students to make informed decisions about their sleep habits as well as foster a deeper appreciation for the significance of sleep in maintaining a healthy and fulfilling life.

Clinical Professor, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Division of Sleep Medicine, Stanford Medicine

Rafael Pelayo's clinical focus has been the treatment of sleep disorders in patients of all ages, and he has lectured nationally and internationally. He has served as chair of the Sleep Disorders Research Advisory Board of the National Center om Sleep Disorders Research at the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute at the National Institutes of Health. He has also chaired the pediatric special interest section of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. Pelayo teaches the Stanford "Sleep and Dreams" undergraduate course alongside William Dement; together, they co-authored the course textbook.

Textbooks for this course:

(Recommended) Rafael Pelayo, How to Sleep: The New Science-Based Solutions for Sleeping Through the Night (ISBN 978-1579659578 )