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The Quantative Study of Dreams - University of CA Santa Cruz

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UCSC Dream Research Group Dept. of Pscyhology
College Eight, UCSC Santa Cruz
CA 95064
United States
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http://psych.ucsc.edu/dreams



The Quantative Study of Dreams - University of CA Santa Cruz

The Quantative Study of Dreams in University of CA Santa Cruz's approach to dreams is very different from the usual ones. It is completely objective and quantitative. It does not draw on case histories, free associations, amplifications, symbolic interpretations, or any other material from outside the dream reports themselves.

Studies using their approach have yielded a wealth of findings on cross-cultural similarities, gender influences, and age differences. Their analyses of lengthy dream journals reveal that there is a large degree of consistency in what a person dreams about over several months or years, even 40 or 50 years in the two longest dream series analyzed to date. There are also striking continuities between their dream findings and waking life, making possible accurate predictions about the concerns and interests of the dreamers. These findings suggest that dreams have "meaning."

Their approach is that of quantitative content analysis. It consists of:

  1. Formulating categories with precise boundaries for all the elements appearing frequently in dreams.
  2. Determining frequencies for those categories in dreams from an individual or a group.
  3. Turning the frequencies into percentages and rates.
  4. Comparing the findings with their norms to determine what is unique about the dreams of the person or group being studied.

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