The Effect of Video Games on Early Cognitive Development

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The Effect of Video Games on Early Cognitive DevelopmentThe Effect of Video Games on Early Cognitive DevelopmentIn 2004, an estimated 60% of Americans (145 million people) played video games regularly. The average gamer is 29 years old.In 2014, 91% of children between the ages of 2 and 17 regularly played video games.Among teenagers, 99% of boys and 94% of girls are gamers.An extensive neurological study revealed that childrens brains receive the same amount of stimulus from video games as they do from traditional play.Playtime is critical for a childs development.61 fifth graders were tested on their spatial reasoning skills, of the group, the children who had been exposed to a fast paced video game were more efficient at pattern and motion identification.Gamer children outshine their non gamer peers in:Visual trackingEnvironmental awarenessProcessing visual cuesMultitaskingMental flexibilityMemory Spatial reasoningQuick decision making While gaming, brain release excessive amounts of dopamine, a neurotransmitter known to stimulate happiness and addiction. Gamers experience dopamine levels equivalent to those released after amphetamine injections. A study on rats suggests that high dopamine levels can increase the brains potential for learning, especially in young children.Video games have been proven to be beneficial to the brain development of elementary school aged children.However, children who spent more than half of their free time playing video games experienced lower prosocial behavior and life satisfaction.In moderation, video games give children a unique opportunity to become more efficient and quick learners.Sources:Gray, P. (2015, February 20). Cognitive Benefits of Playing Video Games. Retrieved April 17, 2015, from https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/freedom-learn/201502/cognitive-benefits-playing-video-gamesGreen, C., & Bavelier, D. (2004). The Cognitive Science of Video Games.Digital Media: Transformations in Human Connection,32-32. Retrieved April 17, 2015, from http://psych.wisc.edu/CSGreen/csg_CNofVGP.pdfSubrahmanyam, K., & Greenfield, P. (2002). Effect Of Video Game Practice On Spatial Skills In Girls And Boys.Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology,13-32. Retrieved April 21, 2015, from http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/0193397394900043Granic, I., Lobel, A., & Engels, R. (2014). The benefits of playing video games.American Psychologist,66-78. Retrieved April 17, 2015, from https://www.apa.org/pubs/journals/releases/amp-a0034857.pdfShapiro, J. (2014, August 27). A Surprising New Study On How Video Games Impact Children. Retrieved April 17, 2015, from http://www.forbes.com/sites/jordanshapiro/2014/08/27/a-surprising-new-study-on-how-video-games-impact-children/

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