Profiles of Subjective Daytime Sleepiness through Cluster Analysis

  • Daniel Ruivo MarquesEmail author
  • Ana Allen Gomes
  • Maria Helena Pinto de Azevedo
Original Paper


Sleepiness propensity and sleepiness perception are two relevant dimensions of the general multidimensional sleepiness construct. In the current study, the aim was to identify eventual homogeneous subgroups when sleepiness propensity and sleepiness perception measures are combined. Data from 678 undergraduate students (aged 17 to 24 years) from a medical school were analyzed. A Two-Step Cluster Analysis was performed taken into consideration sleepiness propensity and sleepiness perception measures as clustering variables. Four different clusters were identified. Additionally, the two groups comprising higher levels of sleepiness perception (i.e., “high perception, low propensity” and “high subjective daytime sleepiness” clusters) had the most compromised results in some of the sleep-related variables examined – sleep needs, sleep latency, sleep quality, sleep sufficiency, self-reported insomnia, sleep reactivity to stress, and cognitive arousal – and in some of non-sleep related variables, such as neuroticism and affect. As to non-sleep variables, those groups reported higher scores in neuroticism, arousability, self-reported mental health and affective states. The identification of distinct groups concerning self-reported sleepiness may bring new avenues for research and understanding of the specific and differential role of sleepiness and its dimensions in sleep health and sleep disturbances, in particular, insomnia disorder.


Sleepiness Epworth sleepiness scale (ESS) Daytime sleepiness perception scale (DSPS-4) Clusters Profiles 



We are grateful to professors and students who participated in this study.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical Approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

This article does not contain any studies with animals performed by any of the authors.

Informed Consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Daniel Ruivo Marques
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Ana Allen Gomes
    • 2
    • 3
  • Maria Helena Pinto de Azevedo
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Education and PsychologyUniversity of Aveiro, Campus Universitário de SantiagoAveiroPortugal
  2. 2.CINEICC - Center for Research in Neuropsychology and Cognitive Behavioral Intervention, Faculty of Psychology and Educational SciencesUniversity of CoimbraCoimbraPortugal
  3. 3.Faculty of Psychology and Educational SciencesUniversity of CoimbraCoimbraPortugal
  4. 4.Faculty of MedicineUniversity of CoimbraCoimbraPortugal

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