Have you visited your children and/or grandchildren and come away thinking they’re spending way too much time playing with video games and other hand-held electronics? Decades ago, parents thought the very same about those new-fangled television sets. And radio, decades prior.
However, there is some good news where video games are concerned. Researchers have conducted tests to learn that there are significant positive effects that come from playing video games — and many can benefit older age groups as well. Some of the mental skills enhanced by video games include*:
- Becoming more focused on following instructions
- Problem solving
- Better hand-eye coordination, fine motor and spatial skills
- Planning and logistics to determine the best use of resources
- Multitasking and simultaneous tracking of many shifting variables and multiple objectives
- Quick thinking, analysis and decision-making
- Stronger focus on accuracy, estimating and pattern recognition
- Inductive reasoning and hypothesis testing
- Enhanced memory, concentration and perseverance
- Teamwork and cooperation with multiplayer games
- Coping with frustration, challenges and developing acclimatization skills
In addition to more than a few of those skills potentially contributing to higher SAT scores, some colleges are taking note of this advanced knowledge and training.
Robert Morris University in Chicago has started granting scholarships to students who are proficient gamers. And it doesn’t end there. In a new industry dubbed “eSports,” professional video gamers compete for millions of dollars in prizes and make six-figure incomes. While hundreds of other colleges across the country boast eSports clubs, Robert Morris is the first to recognize gaming as a varsity sport under its athletic department, issuing scholarships of up to $19,000 a year to train to play the game League of Legends with other teammates.**
So, before you are too critical on the grand kids’ gaming habits, consider the advantage that 10,000 hours of training has provided in other professions.
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The information contained in this material is provided by third parties and has been obtained from sources believed to be reliable, but accuracy and completeness cannot be guaranteed. It is given for informational purposes only.
* Raise Smart Kid; “The Positive and Negative Effects of Video Games”; http://www.raisesmartkid.com/3-to-6-years-old/4-articles/34-the-good-and-bad-effects-of-video-games; accessed Oct. 30, 2014.
**The Associated Press; Oct. 6, 2014; “School Bets Video Game Scholarship Can Draw Talent”;http://bigstory.ap.org/article/70c29860b382402ab7bcf0bc4445a26b/school-bets-video-game-scholarship-can-draw-talent; accessed Oct. 30, 2014.
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