Video Games Can Enhance Good Behavior in Youth
According to this post on ScienceBlog: Videogames can encourage good behavior in youth, further evidence is found that youth who play prosocial video games — games in which characters help others in nonviolent ways — can increase helpful and decrease hurtful behavior.
Craig Anderson, a Distinguished Professor of psychology in Iowa State University, has long history researching the impacts of video games on youth. He is in this collaboration of research, and one study — led by Iowa State psychology Ph.D. graduate Muniba Saleem — will be published in a future issue of the journal Aggressive Behavior, and is the first experimental study on children (ages 9-14) that compares the short-term behavioral effects of playing prosocial, neutral and violent video games.
Anderson and Gentile collaborated with ISU psychology graduate students Sara Prot and Katelyn McDonald on a third paper to be published in a future issue of the journal Pediatric Clinics of North America, titled “Video Games: Good, Bad, or Other?” The authors conclude that the research clearly shows that video games can affect players in multiple ways simultaneously. Their new studies complement three 2009 studies by Gentile, Anderson and other colleagues, who also found that those who played prosocial games exhibited more cooperation and empathy.
They offer a list of advice for pediatricians, parents and other caregivers on choosing and using video games, you can read more details in the post.