Report: Video Games Make Kids Cleverer And Stuff

A huge study of over 12,000 schoolchildren in Australia has linked video games with academic performance. It found that those who played online games every day scored 17 points above average in science, and 15 points in reading and maths.

Alberto Posso, from the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, who published the research in the International Journal of Communication, said “The analysis shows that those students who play online video games obtain higher scores on Pisa tests, all other things being equal.”

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“When you play online games you’re solving puzzles to move to the next level and that involves using some of the general knowledge and skills in maths, reading and science that you’ve been taught during the day.”

Unfortunately the study could not find a direct link between games and being smart, simply that those who did play games scored higher. Parents might like to know that kids who spent a lot of time on social media sites scored on average 4% lower, and the more time they spent tweeting the lower their scores became.

“A number of researchers have been trying to highlight this issue for a while but we really need more detailed research and nuanced data to answer these sorts of questions more confidently,” adds Peter Etchells, senior lecturer in biological psychology at Bath Spa University.

Source: The Guardian

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5 Comments

  1. Nice to know. There’s got to be a benefit to playing some games, I reckon a good strategy totally boosts your brains capacity for short term planning and problem solving, meanwhile GTA will certainly improve a teenagers vocabulary and taste in music. Not sure what Pokemon Go achieves though?

  2. Hardly conclusive stuff, and I agree for a need for more ‘detailed research and nuanced data’.

    I’ve believed for a long time that the skills required in many computer games keeps the mind active and helps maintain certain aspects like acuity and reflexes. Tons can be gained from all sorts of genres, nothing to make anyone develop in huge leaps and bounds, but I think games are an underestimated ‘activity’ at the best of times.

  3. Playing Disney Infinity with my 4yo Nephew and it’s amazing how quickly he’s picked up the basic controls. He can move the character and control the camera with the thumbsticks, attack and defeat enemies, navigate the various platforming sections and use the menus to choose his own jet pack/weapon. He knows all 104 characters names and remembers their abilities. He only plays half an hour/an hour every now and again (less than 10 hours overall) but you can see the progress every time, it’s great.

    He likes using the Vita now too, playing Toy Story 3 (psp). The missions are pretty straightforward fetch quests but he knows what to do and where to go.

  4. My son plays lots of games and he reckons he’s cleverer, but I’m sure that I’m the clevererest.

  5. Very conclusive research, online gaming makes you smarter, social media makes you dumber. Just what I expected, but it’s always good to have it scientifically proven. :o)

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