VIDEO GAME RESEARCH
Study: Violent Video
Game Play Makes More Aggressive Kids
Iowa State University Distinguished Professor of Psychology Craig Anderson has
made much of his life's work studying how violent video game play affects youth
behavior. And he says a new study he led, analyzing 130 research reports on more
than 130,000 subjects worldwide, proves conclusively that exposure to violent
video games makes more aggressive, less caring kids -- regardless of their age,
sex or culture.►
How do violent video games
first person shooter video games, the player assumes the role of the shooter and
sees the world through the character's eyes. thus, the game puts weapons in the
hands of the player. Players become emotionally involved with their character
and take great joy in killing. It is one thing to watch the terminator
kill people. It is another thing to BE the terminator and kill people.
As a result:
Players form positive attitudes toward violence and believe others feel the
Players form expectations that others behave aggressively.
Players learn that using violence is an appropriate way to solve problems.
Playing violent video games is a way of rehearsing
violent behaviors, thus making it easier to imitate that behavior in real life.
Killing your own kind is unnatural (http://www.killology.com/art_trained_killing.htm) and
violent first person
shooters make it easier to overcome this instinct. the army uses simulators that
are similar to first person shooter video games to desensitize soldiers to
violence and mentally prepare them to kill. (http://www.killology.com/art_onkilling_overcoming.htm)
Violent video games are also quite addictive.
Players receive constant and immediate reinforcement for aggressive performance
in the form of visual and auditory stimulation. this positive stimulation is
reinforced during a kill with special effects such as exploding body parts,
blood, and gore. It provides an excellent training ground to learn aggression.
the more realistic the game is, the stronger the negative impact. For example,
killing cartoon-like creatures may have less of a negative impact than killing realistic looking humans. Also,
not all games only reward you for killing "bad"
guys. For example, Grand theft Auto Vice City
rewards you for killing innocent pedestrians.
If you witness your child becoming increasingly
aggressive towards others, you may need to examine his/her consumption of video
games and other forms of entertainment.
fathers and sons, Douglas Gentile and his father have spent many hours arguing
about video games. What makes them different is that Douglas, an Iowa State
University assistant professor of psychology, is one of the country's top
researchers on the effects of media on children. His father, J. Ronald Gentile,
is a leading researcher on effective teaching and a distinguished teaching
professor emeritus of educational psychology at the University of Buffalo, State
University of New York.
You should know…
Psychological Association has once again gone on record regarding
the negative effects of video game violence on children's health.
the APA released a statement calling on the industry to reduce
violent depictions in video games, citing research that correlates
virtual violence with increased aggressiveness in thinking and
behavior. the statement also noted that perpetrators of violence in
video games go unpunished 73% of the time. Psychologist Elizabeth
Carll, co-chair of the APA Committee on Violence in Video Games and
Interactive Media, said, "Showing violent acts without consequences
teaches youth that violence is an effective means of resolving
conflict. Whereas, seeing pain and suffering as a consequence can
inhibit aggressive behavior." [AP, 5/17/05 stats]
90% of teenagers say that their parents never check the video game ratings
before allowing them to rent or buy computer or video games. (Walsh, et al.)
~65% of gamers are over 18 and the average age of a game player is 30 years
old (ESA) thus
videogames aren't made just for kids anymore. Be sure to check the rating
before buying/renting a game for your child.
Of all games sold in 2004:
53% were rated Everyone (E).
30% were rated teen (t).
16% were rated Mature (M).
Videogame sales topped a record 7.3 billion in 2004. the two top top selling
games were Grand theft Auto: San Andreas and Halo 2 which are both rated M.
20% of the top selling 20 games were rated M.
two studies published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology
on April 23, 2000 confirmed that violent video games negatively affect
behavior. One study demonstrated that graphically violent video games
produce an immediate increase in aggressive thoughts and behavior. the other
study found that violent game play not only increased aggressive behavior,
but produced a long-term, real-life impact on the behavior and relationships
of the players. >> more
Parenting and Video Games: One dad's tips
Games Boost Visual Skills
Video Game Violence- YouthAndViolence.com
Grand theft Auto: San Andreas: What Can a Parent Do?
Game Mocks Real
tragedy, Gang Experts Say
Report Card 2005
Review of Research Shows that Playing Violent Video Games can
Heighten Aggression (American
Psychologists Push for Less Violence in Games
Can A Video Game Lead to Murder?
Do Games Prime Brain for Violence?
Video Games and Public Health -
Video Game Violence Impacts Kids
More than Movie Violence
Ratings of teen-Rated Video Games Do Not Always Fully Describe Content
One in Seven teen Video Game Players is Addicted
Violent Videos and Violent Video Games: Why do
cause violence and why do they sell?