Games: Good for Kids

3 07 2007

The pro side of the to and fro over the effects of games just got a shot in the arm from Brunel University. The Scotsman reports:

Researchers from Brunel University spent three years studying 13-16-year-olds who play a leading web-based game.

And far from becoming pale prisoners of their own bedrooms, regular players were found to enhance rather than restrict their imagination, the study found.

Because the game allows them to meet other role-playing gamers, many youngsters also get the chance to find out about different nationalities and races they would not normally come into contact with.

Multi-player online games give children a freedom to explore but without their parents worrying about where they are in an age when, in real life, they are not allowed out by themselves because of safety fears, said Nic Crowe and Dr Simon Bradford of Brunel’s School of Sport and Education.

Here’s the page of the Doctor responsible, and I believe this is the reference:

Crowe, N., and Bradford, S., (2007, in press), ‘Identity in On-Line Gaming: young people’s symbolic and virtual extensions of self’, in Hodkinson, P., and Bennett, A., (eds), Scenes, Subcultures and Tribes, Routledge.

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