Thirty schizophrenic patients (20 medicated, 10 off medication) were compared with 30 normal control subjects matched for age, sex, handedness, and intelligence. During the performance of left-hemisphere cognitive activation tasks, normal subjects had significantly increased EEG alpha coherence in areas related to left focal frontal sites, with decreases in temporal and posterior areas. Schizophrenic patients did not show the same degree of focal activation of left frontal areas. During the performance of right-hemisphere cognitive activation tasks, normal subjects and schizophrenic patients had similar patterns of right posterior increases in alpha coherence. Discriminant analyses were able to classify 81.4% of all subjects correctly. It is suggested that the findings indicate an aberrant functional organisation of the brain in schizophrenia, particularly affecting the left hemisphere.