Video games have undoubtedly changed the way we perceive leisure nowadays. There is something people have asked themselves these days where video games are everywhere and we use them so often: Are video games and intelligence connected?
Nowadays, video games are the primary attraction for parties and gatherings. It is also an industry that manifests hundreds of thousands of millions of dollars worldwide. We have all played video games at least once. In general, we associate it with leisure, when we do not have to think too much. But can video games affect our brain in a positive way?
In this article, we will discuss how we have changed our ways of looking at the world as a result of the use of video games. We also see that not all video games have the same cognitive effect on our brain.
What is gamification?
This term describes the impact of different types of video games on specific activities. We could gameify almost any activity.
In general, video games are used in school to improve the learning process and students’ cognitive development. It can be activities in themselves or they can compliment other activities. This has led to many parents complaining, which shows that this type of game is not widely accepted as a form of educational tool.
Video games and intelligence
There are many reasons that have led people to consider that there is a relationship between video games and intelligence. A study conducted in 2005 by Shaffer, Squire, Halverson and Gee actually established that there is a connection between learning and video games.
It is common knowledge that chess can improve logical reasoning. Nowadays, games such as League of Legends or Battlefield 3 can improve some areas of the brain and possibly promote cognitive development. To play League of Legends , you need to come up with a good strategy, just like in chess.
In Battlefield 3 , players will need to have good eye-hand coordination, as they will need to be fast to win.
This shows that video games require many skills. We have or may not have these abilities, all depending on the type of intelligence we possess.
A player with spatial intelligence will succeed in strategy games. On the other hand, if you have a verbal-linguistic intelligence, you will succeed in games such as Aworded.
Not all video games
Right now, you might be asking yourself if this means that every single game can make you smarter. The answer is no. In general, one should go for games that improve one’s ability to process information and one’s problem solving abilities.
Another important aspect to consider is the minimum age required to play specific games. It can affect their social perception and cause them to lose empathy if a child plays a violent video game.
However, social perception is not always affected in such a way, since several variables will have to be present. Some of them may be certain personality disorders or a complicated upbringing, among others.
This does not mean that violent games are incapable of stimulating intelligence, as several studies have shown that they do. However, it is important to understand that this is happening among the adult population. We need a certain level of emotional maturity to be able to understand the difference between fiction and reality.
In a way , video games are positive and even necessary. We must not overlook the benefits that these new technologies bring us.