Most people around the world spend most of their free time playing video games alone or with friends. In 2021, a study revealed that there are more than 3 billion regular gamers worldwide, which is not declining thanks to rapid technological advancements. While gaming is a popular hobby to many, it is a controversial topic regarding its effects on students, especially college students.
Positive and Negative Effects of Video Games on College Students
Critics of video games emphasize that the disadvantages outweigh the advantages. On the other hand, those who support video games report the opposite. Like anything in life, moderation is key when playing video games. This is especially true for college students. Students need to have other hobbies apart from gaming to enjoy its benefits. Let’s discuss the effects of video games on college students by highlighting the pros and cons.
Positive Effects of Video Games on Students
While several scientific studies are being conducted today on the pros and cons of gaming, most of them have found that there are a couple of benefits that individuals enjoy playing video games. These pros can help you perform your daily tasks effectively and efficiently. However, they apply to jobs that require concentration and attention, such as programmer, surgeon, or driver.
1. Games enhance cognitive functions
Video games enhance your cognitive abilities in different ways. They include:
- Processing speed
- Mathematical intelligence
- Deductive reasoning
- Visuospatial ability
A study conducted back in 2018 had 170 participants. In this study, one group was comprised of gamers while the other one was of non-gamers. Both groups received a similar set of questions to test their cognitive abilities. The group comprised of gamers performed better in every field than the non-gamer participant.
2. Games improve logic and problem-solving skills
Gamers have to think critically to solve problems that they encounter while playing. To succeed in the games, you have to navigate the game using a wide range of skills to achieve your goals. Studies show that gamers have better brain connectivity and more grey matter than non-gamers due to extensive gaming time that requires problem-solving skills. Developing and improving these skills leads to better performance in different areas of life.
3. Improved hand-to-eye coordination
People who play video games regularly have better hand-to-eye coordination than those who don’t. And this makes them capable of performing important tasks that require hand-eye coordination. Some examples of these tasks include typing, driving, writing, and even performing surgeries.
4. Fast and accurate decision making
Another benefit of gaming is the ability to make the right decisions quickly. Regular video game players are forced to make decisions quickly based on the information they receive from the game. Playing fast-paced video games contributes to the player’s ability to make the right decisions quickly.
Some games punish players for making the wrong decisions. For instance, Call of Duty is a fast-paced game that requires you to make the right decisions all the time to win. Making the right decisions quickly is important in a wide range of fields, such as in hospitals or the army.
Before we look at the downside of gaming, we know that playing games are time-consuming, especially in college, where you also have many other things to do. But, in today’s technological advance world, you can save some time for hobbies by working smart. Like you can hire an essay writer, dissertation service, tutor or professional mentor to help you finish your college assignment on time so you can have some free time for your hobbies.
Negative Effects of Video Games on Students
Despite all these benefits, there are several disadvantages of playing video games. These disadvantages can negatively impact the quality of your life.
1. Video games make you addicted
One of the biggest problems with video games is they make you addicted. This type of addiction is a huge problem in different parts of the world. According to the World Health Organization, gaming disorder is considered a mental health condition that affects 3 to 4 per cent of gamers worldwide. Video game developers design their products to be addictive to hook players. They can even include special rewards and bonuses encouraging them to play regularly. When you become addicted, you’ll need professional help to get back on track.
2. Games replace problems in the real world
One of the biggest issues with playing video games excessively is that it leads to neglect of other important areas of life. It’s a safe place to be, especially when individuals want to escape the problems that they are facing in the real world. While escaping stress is a natural process, you should exercise caution to avoid neglecting other important areas of your life, such as studies, nurturing relationships with your loved ones, and improving your professional life.
3. Decrease Academic Performance
While gaming boots the mental strength of the individual, it can lead to decreased academic performance when it becomes excessive. Many Research has shown that people who suffer from gaming addiction do not do well in their academic life.
People who do excessive gaming do not feel motivated to focus on their studies as they do not get the euphoric and adrenaline rush from studying that they get from gaming.
There are a lot of pros and cons of playing video games, especially in college. Acknowledging them and playing in moderation will enable you to have a good time and improve on other important areas in life.
A computer engineer by day, gamer by night. He grew up playing Mario and contra, and just like every other 90s kid, he got passionate about mobile gaming. He had done bachelors in computer science and played fps and MOBA games for years.