You probably have a pretty good inkling about whether you're a morning or night person, but there aren't many simple online tests that can pinpoint how you fit on the sleep spectrum when compared to the population at large. Your sleep type, or chronotype, is a lot more complex than you might have realized, and it can influence your life in a number of surprising ways.
The Munich Chronotype Questionnaire (MCTQ) is a different type of online test that is backed up by extensive scientific research. Created by chronobiologists Till Roenneberg and Martha Merrow, it was designed to help the scientists evaluate their research on circadian rhythms, or body clocks. The test is also part of an experiment to see just how useful a questionnaire can be when studying general patterns like people's chronotypes. (It turns out, it can be quite useful.)
You can participate in the study by taking the questionnaire yourself here. After finishing the quiz, you'll receive an e-mail detailing your results.
One thing you might be surprised to learn is that chrono-typing is a lot more complicated than simply divvying people up as either "morning larks" or "night owls." Most people fall somewhere between these two extremes, and where you fall in the spectrum can have different impacts on your daily rhythms and how you manage to get enough sleep.
The researchers have discovered that there's a strong genetic component to your chronotype, and that the length of internal circadian rhythms can vary. That is, most people's natural day is slightly longer than 24 hours, but there are some with shorter natural days and some with longer ones.
The questionnaire also revealed data that shows relationships between certain physical biomarkers and your chronotype. For instance, levels of hormones like cortisol (the "stress hormone") and melatonin (the "sleep hormone") have different balances depending on your sleep type at different times of the day.
Your results might not only provide some additional insight about your sleep type, but they'll also help to inform the research. Results even give some helpful advice on how to make small adjustments to your sleeping and waking schedule to better suit your needs out in the world, a world with a clock that doesn't always match up with your internal one.