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Do video games help us in real life or not

‘Hey bro, want to play FIFA? I am so bored and I think my head will explode if I study any more. Plus I want to set a new record. I didn’t like the way you thrashed me last time, it is time to redeem myself. Are you playing or what?’ said my younger brother invading my space and already settling in my room. I have the privilege of having a video game in my room something that my younger brother does not have because my mother believes he is underage. I was bored too, so I took up the challenge. After the game, I began to reflect on why my mother did not allow my younger brother to have a video game in his room.

I already knew that video games help us deal with boredom by filling in the time we are idle. I also knew that they kept the competitive spirit up and helped a gamer to think ahead if they are to win the game. I also knew that it helps one to learn to think on their feet and make swift decisions. I however needed answers to the following questions. Does the age rating in video games work? Can kids learn from video games? Do they affect relationships between the gamers or other people surrounding them? Are they dangerous to children?

From this list of questions, I formed my research question, ‘Do video games help us in real life or not?’

My Research Journey-do video games help us in real life or not

Although video games have been here for a while, there are not many books on video games. I therefore made a decision to conduct only an online research with key words of the questions that I was seeking answers to. was my preferred research online tool. The first question I wanted to explore was the rating in video games. I therefore typed the words ‘do video ratings work?’ in the results section; I chose a link from Iowa State University News. I chose this link because I felt that it being university news, it should be well researched.

Next, I researched on my next question on whether kids learn anything from video games. I typed the words, ‘do kids learn from video games?’ I then chose the link on cultural policy to better understand the question. Next, I typed the words ‘video games and relationships’ and chose a link that provided insight on gamer’s interaction with their families. I chose this link to better understand why my mother was strict about video games and to evaluate if they affect the relationship between me and my brother.

Finally I wanted to know if I was exposing my brother to harm by letting him play video games. So I typed in the words, ‘are video games dangerous to children?’ I chose the link with the title, ‘Video gaming is a waste of time.’

The results-do video games help us in real life or not

According to my research results, I have found that videos both help us in real life but they also distract us in real life too as the results show both positives and negatives.

Results from Iowa State University on if video ratings are helpful revealed the following. Russell Laczniak a professor at the university stated that the research results showed that ratings actually work. He stated that parents that put restrictions on the age rating have children who spend less time on the violent games. These children were also less likely to behave appropriately as obeying their parents restrictions helps them develop good behaviour compared to children whose parents did not use ratings. Children that were not age rated were likely to spend more time on the video games. (Laczniak)

Further, Professor Laczniak believes that although the ratings work, other factors must be put into consideration for best results. He stated that parent behaviour was just as important as warm parents are able to restrict violent games better compared to parents that display high emotions and anxious parents. Parents exhibiting the latter behaviour will not influence their children’s behaviour positively as the children will disregard their parent’s ratings and play more of the games. (Laczniak) Following this results, I will be conscious of the games I play with my little brother because ratings exist for a reason. I want him to be able to enjoy appropriate content as well as maintain positive behaviour.

On weather kids learn from video games, Mare Prensky stated that kids are learning both positives and negatives. In games where they have to defeat enemies, Mare states children are learning that enemies are hard to defeat as they have to defeat different enemies on different scales. In the positive, it teaches them perseverance, making the right choices fast and nurturing their skills. He insists that a video game helps anyone learn about life. He identified five learning levels that people learn from video games. In level one, video games teach people how to do something. They also teach people to stay in control of the situation. (Prensky)

Level two helps the gamers understand what to do and teaches them that rules can be changed. It helps gamers compare the game to real life and beat the system. Level 3 helps gamers learn why things are done in the game. The ‘whys’ in the games helps gamers understand why some events happen in real life. Level four teaches culture, achievement and leadership by understanding the environment in the game and applying it in real life. Level 5 teaches gamers on decision making of what is right or wrong. Mare acknowledges that the teachings are both positive and negative. Mare believes that by developing proper games and using them correctly increases the positives. (Prensky)  I plan to be more conscious of the video games I choose from now on.Do video games help us in real life or not

The question on gaming and relationships was answered by Dustin Redmond. In his study, he examined the communication between gamers and other family members. Results showed that a negative relationship existed between time spent on video games and communication between parents and siblings. There was however no significant relationship between playing video games and communication with parents and siblings. (Redmond) It is the hours that were put in that affected that communication. I will strive to put interaction with family members first over a game. Family lasts forever but games get out of craze sooner than later and are not worth being chosen over spending time with family.

My final research on the dangers of gaming revealed that although games are fun and teach some life skills, addiction results in a lot of time wastage for players who spend all their time on video games instead of doing something constructive. An article by Don Reisinger reveals that a research by Pew Research Centre revealed that a bigger percentage of adults in America believe that gaming is a waste of time. With this new revelation I plan to cut back on the hours I spend in front of a video game screen and fill in my time with necessary work and only play to unwind from a long day

After the research, I learned that video games can be beneficial only if they are age and content appropriate and if they are played for short periods of time. Spending too much time on video games affects relationships with family and can cause addiction negatively affecting the gamer. So video games sometimes help us in life and sometimes they don’t.

My Growth as a Researcher-do video games help us in real life or not

                        This research has helped me improve my research skills on choosing the relevant topics to research on. It also helped me understand the importance and failures of video games. In addition to this, the research has helped improve my writing skills by knowing what to choose to write and how to summarise other peoples’ work.




Works Cited

Laczniak, Russell. “Video Game Ratings Work, If You Use Them – News Service – Iowa State University”. News.Iastate.Edu, 2017,  Accessed 26 Nov 2018.

Prensky, Mare. “What Kids Learn From Video Games”. Culturalpolicy.Uchicago.Edu, 2018,  Accessed 26 Nov 2018.

Redmond, Dustin. “The Effect of Video Games On Family Communication And Interaction”. Google Scholar, 2010,  Accessed 26 Nov 2018.

Reisinger, Don. “A Lot Of Americans Think Gaming Is A Waste Of Time”. PCMAG, 2015,,2817,2496707,00.asp%3famp=1.  Accessed 26 Nov 2018.