How Video Games Can Improve Our Mental
This contains study on how Games improve our physical and mental skills. I selected this topic to study how video games ...
“How video games can improve our mental and physical abilities?”
Name: Seelam Nooka Raju ID: 2013UG02041
An assignment submitted to ICAT Design & Media College In partial fulfillment of the requirement For the award of the degree of B.A. (Hons.) COMMUNICATION DESIGN In GAME DESIGN
ICAT Design & Media College
Affiliated to BCU (UK) Hyderabad– 500 035.
Abstract This dissertation contains study on how Games improve our physical and mental skills. I selected this topic to study how video games improve our mental and physical skills after playing them. Video games have been proven to improve the skills of our brain in both creative and logical methods. In the following dissertation you will learn how video games can improve our brain functionality and what type of games causes the different types of improvements. A review is conducted on similar topic on website by Mark Griffiths titled “Playing video games is good for your brain – here’s how”. This article was the inspiration for my dissertation. This research will help me in finding out how videogames will improve your skills and how people of different age groups react to the games of different genres. This dissertation is targeted towards those people who plays video games.
Declaration I hereby declare that submission of the dissertation quoted sentence “How Games improve our physical and mental skills” from the people who writes articles and paragraphs across the references and acknowledge to the fullest of my knowledge. I am aware that failing to acknowledge the work of wherever necessary would lead to treating the dissertation as a work of body.
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Bonafide Certificate Certified that this dissertation titled “How Games improve our physical and mental skills” is the bonafide work of S.Nooka Raju who carried out the dissertation under our supervision. Certified further that to the best of our knowledge the work reported here in does not form part of any other thesis or dissertation.
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Acknowledgement The completion of my dissertation on the " How Games improve our physical and mental skills " would not have been possible without the guidance from my mentor Mrs. K. Sai Sheela. Thank you mam, for your unending patience and support in making me complete my dissertation on time. I finally would want to thank my family and colleagues for their moral support which played an important role in helping me carry out this dissertation.
Table of Content Chapter 1| Introduction ……………………………………………..…………………………….. 7
1.1 | Research Questions ………………………..………………………..……..………. 8
1.2 | Aim ………………………..……………………………………………………..…….... 8
1.3 | Statement of the problem ………………………..……………………......…... 8
1.4 | Objectives ………………………..………………………………..…….……….…... 8
1.5 | Significance of the study ………………………..………..…….….…………... 9
Chapter 2 | Research Methodology ………………………..………………..…………....... 10
Chapter 3 | Review of Literature ………………………..……………….……………..…... 12
Chapter 4 | Case study ………………………..……………………………….……………....... 17
Chapter 5 | Hypothesis ………………………..………………………….………………..….... 21
Chapter 6 | Conclusion ………………………..………………………….……………......…... 22
Chapter 7 | Bibliography ………………………..………………………….………………...... 23
Chapter 1| Introduction My topic for this dissertation is “How games can improve our mental and physical skills”. In this dissertation you will find how videogames can improve the abilities the players in many ways like improving their eye vision, their driving skills, mathematical skills, problem solving, develop leadership qualities and many more. It also contains detailed studies conducted by various universities and outcome of the study. there were many articles written on this specific topic which I gathered from the Internet and reviewed them.
I was playing videogames since I was a child but my parents used to restrict me from playing video games for too long. I used to wonder if there is any positive effect while playing video games which would convince parents to let their children play and encourage them to learn from them. Once when I was a child I visited go karting track There with my cousins I went for a ride on the go kart and all of my cousin brothers were surprised that I was driving lot better than them on the track, I couldn't explain why I was good at it at that time but soon I've realised that my driving skills have improved alot because I was playing Racing games very often. Since then I always had this question in mind that “why can't video games help us improve our mental and physical skills?”
We are fine here in the news that video games are the main cause of violence in children but recent studies have proven that this is not exactly the case. I agree that some of the violent incidents which took place the past were caused by people who play violent games but doesn't everybody play games nowadays and most of the games by nature are violent, that does not create violence in Real world It all depends on the person playing the game and status of his emotional life. Since I got this chance to research on a topic for my dissertation I chose to go deeper on the subject and explore answers to why videogames can't help us improve your skills.
| Research Questions
● Will students play educational games? ● What are the games that most people play? ● Will all age groups accept games as an improvement for human senses? ● Why we need to play games? ● How students are reacting to educational games?
The aim of my dissertation is to find out how games can help us in improving our mental and physical skills.
| Statement of the problem
Video games have become regular hobby too many kids and young adults. So do they affect the behaviour and skills of the players in positive ways . What physical abilities can be improved by playing video games and what type of games should we play to develop our mental skills.
● Understand how various games help improve the skills. ● Study the psychology of Students age group by directly meeting and interviewing them. ● Research to know how mind games are affecting students in their real life. ● Understand various genres and their core activities. ● Research about the companies involved in creating simulation games
| Significance of the study
People are buying video games and playing them for hours together without knowing the impact of them on our mind in both positive and negative ways. I want to help people understand this better by researching on the positive ways video games can effect our mind and find out if there is any positive effect on Improving the physical abilities and skills of the players.
2 | RESEARCH METHODOLOGY
The main part of the study will be collected from secondary sources that are Internet based. It also contains interviews, surveys and some other research techniques conducted in colleges and schools. The study is based on the question “how games can improve our skills?” Which statistics and analysis from Internet on how they can affect our mind in positive ways.
Show my result starts with the question, will students play educational games? and the answer is Video games have been part of education since a long time. But with the increasing technology in our everyday life pistol games have emerged as a major teaching tool for children of all ages. Nowadays games are tailor made to include basic tasks humans and animals face in our day to day life. Games nowadays have come to a point where they are not just entertainment toys to play with. They are not just a multi million dollar industry. They let Gamers explore new world, they let them think, talk and act explore unrestrictedly different kinds of worlds which are otherwise inaccessible to a common man. This new worlds Explorer and interact with them are what makes games powerful tool for learning and educating children and young adults.
According to ESRB an average gamer plays video games 8 hours per week. and spends for 60 hours per year completely on video games. during this intense mind exercise they go through different times of games one after the other they may spend their entire time on a single Addictive game. Research shows that people house paint almost 7 million man hours playing games like halo and Dota 2. Generally most addictive games have the properties of a never ending story. Most addictive games have something else to do if you have completed the game technically. games like Batman Arkham for instance are very addictive even after completing the game you have something else to do like collecting the riddler trophies. Like this most addictive games have other challenges to complete besides the main story line
Why we need to play video games? Experimental studies by Green and Bavelier 2007 ,BOOT ETAL 2008 suggest that playing video games might help people become more skillful in at least one visualspatial task.experienced people trained with video games have improved their mental rotation abilities. Experiment suggests that game related improvements are accompanied by distinctive changes in brain processing. In the study trainees who showed the greatest improvement in spatial skills and a pattern of increased amplitude in their visual event related potentials, A pattern which may reflect more intense brain activity for visual attention and suppression of distracting information by WU et al 2012 and enhance students ability to learn.
3 | REVIEW OF LITERATURE
This article is about How do video games provide learning and health benefits to a gamer : a review of the empirical literature and author karen e.dilland jody c. and website praeger westport, connecticut london. I will be introducing a great author who have contributed to the video game industry. In my study one of the author include adam eichenbaum, daphne bavelier and c. shawn green who have helped in my study “how video games provide learning and health benefits.” Is playing games good for us? This is the question I hear daily from gamers………..!!!!!! Daphne Bravelier professor of brain and cognitive sciences at university of Rochester .having conducted more than 20 studies on the topic says “it turns out that action video games are far from mindless shooters”. Her research has shown that video games show improved skills we have seen the typically in people that don’t play games their reaction time on test of multitasking lengthened by 200 milliseconds which is something like 30%, Bravelier says but in gamers it is lengthened only by 10%. 1
According to sergio's fMRI studies gamers mainly use their frontal cortex ,this is an
area of brain specialized for planning ,attention ,multitasking. Non gamers in contrast use predominately use an area called the parietal cortex,the part of brain specializing in visual spatial functions. Sergio says the gamers really didn’t have to use much brain at all ,they just used these higher cognitive centers to do it.  Drew Guarini, 2013, 9 ways Video games can actually be good for you, huffingtonpost.com, 7 Nov 2013
A growing body of research around the world is showing the bright side of video gaming. Video games can help people to see better after playing FPS games, learn more quickly, develop greater mental focus when people play puzzle games, become more spatially aware of their surroundings, estimate more accurately and multitask more effectively. Some video games can also make young people more empathetic ,helpful and sharing. Douglas gentile at Iowa state university ‘’game research says that effectiveness of video games on physiology and behavior is so strong that…GAMES can be powerful teachers that we can harness the skills of young adults. In researched published in in 2003 they used a series of visual puzzles to demonstrate that individuals who play videogames for at least four days per week for a minimum of one hour per day were better than non gamers estimating numbers of objects,controlling where their attention was focused spatially and switching rapidly between task. Joseph Chiisholm a psychologist at university of British Columbia,Canada found video games players were better able to identify the distractions and are quicker to return their focus
The benefits of playing video games can reduce stress, refine motor skills, improve your vision and more given by Danny GALLAGHER march 10 2013. The university of Utah released a study last year that examined the effects of regular gaming on children showed signs of improvement in resilience, empowerment, and fighting spirit. Researchers revealed that “games” ability to act on neuronal mechanism that activate positive emotions and reward system, improved kids attitude as they faced the daily challenges of their illness. Video games education for primary school children. Playing video games in many situations may boost young children's learning, health and social skills, according to a review of research in American psychologist. The effect of video games on children and adolescents development and a more balanced perspective 13
is needed. Video games actually strengthen many of our cognitive skills such as spatial navigation, reasoning, memory and perception. A 2013 metaanalysis has found that people playing shooter games improved a player's capacity to think about objects in three dimensions just as an academic courses which is designed to enhance the skills. Video games has a critical implication for education and career development has established the power of spatial skills for achievement in science technology engineering and mathematics Granic says enhanced thinking was not found when playing other types of video games such as puzzles or roleplaying games. Playing games more often may also help children develop problemsolving skills,the authors said the more playing games may also help children in solving skills and reported playing video games the more they improved in problemsolving and school grades and social skills the following year and children's creativity was also enhanced by playing any kind of video games,but not when children used other forms of technology such as computer or cell phone. Simple games that are easy to reach and can be played anytime such as angry birds can improve players moods promote relaxation and ward off anxiety study says playing video games simply makes people happier, this seems to be fundamental emotional benefit. GRANIC highlighted the possibility that video games are effective tools for learning resilience in the face of failure. Another stereotype of research challenges is the socially isolated gamer. 4More than 70 percent of gamers play with a friend and a million of people worldwide participate in massive virtual worlds through video games. Multiplayer games become virtual social communities .people who play video games even if they are violent that encourage cooperation are more likely to be helpful to others while playing games than those who play the same game competitively.  Isabela Granic PhD 2014, Video game play may provide learning, health, social benefits, American Psychological Association, February 2014
Mark Griffiths: The educational benefits of video games 2
Video Games have great positive potential and considerable success when games are
designed to address a specific problem to teach a certain skill.video game technology have a impact on childhood education.since video games have the capacity to engage the children in learning experiences this has led to rise of “edu tainment“ media. Some evidences and recent research suggest that important basic skills may be built or reinforced by video games for example spatial visualization that is rotating and manipulating three dimensional objects in 3d applications improve with video games. Playing video games can help children in setting life goals, ensuring goal rehearsal, reinforcement and maintaining records of behavior change. Video Games can be used in examining individual characteristics such as selfconcept, self esteem, individual differences and goal setting. Video games allow participants to experience novelty, curiosity,and challenge. This will stimulate learning. Video game may help in development of transferable IT skills . Video games equip children with state of the art technology.and improve language skills video games facilitate discussing and sharing, following directions answering questions and basic maths skills, basic reading skills like character dialogue which are printed on the screen eg: PLAY, QUIT, GO, STOP, LOAD, ETC. Skills achieved by gaming : video gaming is now the world's largest entertainment medium. 3
Lehart found 94% of girls and 99% of boys played video games as per US sample
Gentile conducted three studies with three age groups with in three countries and found that easily in the US, part of the study 161 college students that those who played prosocial games behaved more helpful towards other students in later task. In Japanese simple prosocial behavior was related to prosocial game playing over four month period and is up to parents to ensure games with maximum benefits are played.  Mark Griffiths 2014, Positive play: The benefits of video gaming, gamasutra.com, 120914  Lenhart et al, 2008, The Benefits of Playing Video Games, pewinternet.org, 2008
Gaming has been found in improving a range of visualization, attention skills and cognitive skills. Karni Et Al 2003 showed that cognitive experiences can become a reason to the long term changes in the human brain. 5
Brains are trained to be a multitasking machine, games can help people process general
information much more faster than for non gamers and improve their fundamental abilities to reason and solve problems. Games enhanced splitsecond decision making and many other skills like boost auditory perception. Games like modern fast paced action video games will sharpen your vision,improve your attention and working memory. Bowman and Rotter claims that creative and prosocial games help to release stress and aggression, gold et al 2006 said that videogames have shown to have beneficial effects as learning aids within the healthcare sector. Medical point of view on the benefits of gaming : Absorption in a game distracts the mind from discomfort and pain. Playing games could help children who are recovery from physical injuries, gain motor skills and coordination. Now doctors in many countries are using this method to treat patients in physiotherapy because it help players to improve hand eye coordination and help players gain many skills.  Karni et al 2003, Art as means for longterm neurocognitive change, journal.frontiersin.org
4 | Case study
An article by Adam Eichenbaum in the American journal Describe the long lasting effects of video games on our mind, such as decision making , perception, memory and attention. The study mainly focuses on action games which contain fast moment , keeping track of many items, Making split second decisions which are all considered by scientists as the building blocks of Intelligence. The chosen few Gamers and non Gamers and conducted few surveys and test on them which concluded that Gamers have a higher perception on whatever test they conducted than Gamers. This tells us that gaming is the cause of better performance, but it doesn't prove it. The continue to test on this particular subject To get a better proof that video games can improve the performance of the participants. this time they choose few people randomly Who were not playing games on regular basis and asked half of them to play a game every day for a few hours for the sake of the experiment and the rest did not play any games. The findings of this experiment conveyed that Gamers developed Improved perceptual skills than people who did not play games.
The following paragraph I am going to list all the findings of the research conducted by Eichenbaum Most of the research have presented below directly extracted from the original report.
Slight improvements in visual process 50 hours of action video game Play over a period of 10 to 12 weeks Improve the visual process of differentiating the Small differences in shapes and sizes in shades of Grey which is called as visual contrast sensitivity, Compared to people who did not play games.
Amblyopia Vision eye disorder due to which people suffering from it could not see clearly with one eye, Due to fault in transmission of signals to the brain from otherwise healthy eye. To treat this disorder Li And his colleagues performed An experiment 1 people suffering from this disorder Few people were asked to play action games with the healthy eye closed and few other people given basic tasks to do like watching TV or writing a book with the healthy eye closed. They found out that people in the gaming condition short great improvement, often normal to near normal vision where as people in non gaming condition showed no improvement. Many in the gaming condition developed hundred percent vision and stereoscopic depth Which has the ability to Coordinate input from both eyes to determine the Depth has been restored.
Better attention and vigilance Improved spatial attention: Green & Bavelier (2012) Have found that action video games help the people to improve their Ability to locate quickly the target stimulus and distracting environment. This test was classified as a good example of improving driving skills in video game player.
Patience One of the major skill games have taught me during my childhood is to be patient. Old arcade games Like Super Mario, space invaders and Rampage have repetitive gameplay and mechanics which pushes the boundaries of how far you can go. And more recent games of RPG genre Like Final Fantasy, Dragon Warrior, neverwinter Nights and World of Warcraft implemented leveling system where we increase our level by fighting the same Monsters again and again which helped me to be more patient and preservative.
Strategic planning I guess everybody can agree that Strategy games are much appreciated for their gameplay and are Strategy itself is a very important life skill. Everybody needs to plan 18
their strategy for their income and expenditure, or planning their vacation and fulfilling their career path. The point here is that this type of games help us in thinking ahead of the situation which is an important part of everybody’s life.
Leadership Qualities Games have the natural ability to create great leadership qualities in young adults. Implementing simple game mechanics Like Clans, Guilds, allows a game to brain the mind of kids to be great leaders the future. This might sound silly but there is so much in common to managing a guild and a project team. Basic tasks like Mobilizing people to a single goal, Resolving conflicts between teammates, Managing schedules and time table, Inspiring and motivating your teammates are all part of gaming culture which are very helpful in real life.
Creativity and mental power Many games have been designed especially to train your brain to improve its functionality. some of the games like Brain Age math game and Flash Focus a hand eye coordination game are good examples for games which train our mind. Like other muscles in our body the brain will lose its functionality if you don't train it well from time to time, the inter activities of games can help your brain exercise while having fun at the same time. this will also improve the creativity and generate unique ideas and increase the mental power of Gamers.
The researchers from Deakin University in Melbourne Australia the study examined that racing games have proven to help improve preschool motor skills. The study examined 53 preschool aged kids and discover that those who played interactive games had better object to control motor skills than those who don't. It is clear, though, whether children who have better than average motor skills most likely tend to gravitate toward video games in the first place.
Review of cybertherapy and telemedicine included the study found that the gamers who suffered from mental health issues such as stress and depression were very quickly able to vent or heal their frustration and aggression by playing video games and showed a noted improvement hence the most important effect of the study is video games reduce stress and depression is noted. The study hypothesized that games have given certain TYPE A personalities much needed time to relax in “a state of relative mindlessness “that allowed them to avoid reaching a certain level of stressful state. Psychologist at university of Washington cited that "many video games help provide pain relief" video games don’t just provide relief from emotional pain, they can also help those who are suffering from physical pain DR DAPHNE MAURER of the visual development lab of Ontario MC MASTER UNIVERSITY made a surprising discovery that video games can improve vision. People suffering from cataracts can improve their vision by playing games. It is believed that games are so fast paced that they require an extreme amount of attention, training the visually impaired to view things more sharply. They provide higher levels of dopamine and adrenaline that “.
Cognitive Neuroscientists at the University of Rochester in New York Found that “video games improve your decision making” skills. Found that games give players plenty of practice for making decision in real world. Researchers suggest that oriented games act as a simulator for decisionmaking process by giving players several chances to infer information from their surrounding and forcing them to act accordingly.
5 | Hypothesis Now we all know that video games have effect on our mind in both positive and negative ways. Here are basic questions I have for my hypothesis. ● How video games improve physical abilities of a young adult ? ● Can this be tested? If a child was playing racing games often he is more likely to develop better driving skills than children who does not play racing games everyday. This can be tested by conducting controlled experiments on young children of primary schools. In the same way people who play FPS games have better vision than other people because they look at a single point on the screen and train their eyes to focus on small details. People playing puzzle games and mind games have better understanding and problem solving skills. The independent variable of my hypothesis is “the type playing video game” and the dependent variable is “ the improved skill set in the players”
6 | Conclusion
The reason behind choosing this topic is, when I was playing a racing games I realised that I am playing the game for a long time and without noticing my driving skills have developed. As we can now see that video games play a major role the development of young children and their behaviour towards the society and their future. Video game should be implemented in colleges and schools to improve the skills of young adults and children. It is already a proven fact that video games developed mental and physical abilities in children, also people suffering from vision disorders have better chance of recovering . Hence I want to conclude my dissertation by saying that videogames should be implemented in educational mediums And not be dismissed as a cause of violence.
7 | BIBLIOGRAPHY
Articles Daphne Bavalier, The Positive and Negative Effects of Video Games, Mark Griffiths 2014, Positive play: The benefits of video gaming, gamasutra.com, 120914 Dr. Mark Griffiths 2014, Video Games Are Good For Your Brain Here's Why Drew Guarini, 2013, 9 ways Video games can actually be good for you, huffingtonpost.com, 7 Nov 2013 Jane McGonigal 2012, How Might Video Games Be Good for Us?, Tara Long 2014, Can Video Games Improve Your Vision? Nic Fleming 26 August 2013, Why video games may be good for you. Kara Loo COO 2014, Ways Video Games Will Help Your Kids in School, Pixelberry Studios Peter Gray Ph.D Feb202015, Cognitive Benefits of Playing Video Games, Peter Gray Ph.D Jan72012, The Many Benefits, for Kids, of Playing Video Games, Peter Gray Ph.D Fwb022012, Video Game Addiction: Does It Occur? If So, Why?
Brooke Strickland Aug 2012, Hooked on Games: The Lure and Cost of Video Game and Internet Addiction Video Games and Learning: Teaching Participatory Culture in the Digital Age Kurt Squire
Reports Mark Griffiths 2014, Positive play: The benefits of video gaming, gamasutra.com, 120914 Lehart: Skills achieved by gaming Karni Et Al 2003, Gaming has been found in improving a range of visualization, attention skills and cognitive skills. Bowman and Rotter 2014 , creative and prosocial games help to release stress and aggression. John Ericson 2013, Video games improve your decision making skills, Cognitive Neuroscientists at the University of Rochester , New York