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Effects Of Video Games On Children's Behavior

1810 words - 7 pages

An analysis about the effects of video games on children behavior
Talal Alomairi
University of Miami

Effect of Video Games on Children’s Behavior
Social scientists have been examining the effect that video games have on behavior. From the introduction of video games in the 1980s, there have been numerous research studies to this effect (Andersen & Taylor, 2008). The issue has become even more significant in the modern context because these video games have become bloodier and more realistic than ever before. Even though boys play these games more than girls in America, the consumption of video games has generally been high. Carey (2013) indicates that 32% of these gamers are below the age of 18. Therefore, it would be crucial to evaluate the effects that these video games have on the behavior of such children.
Socialization is a critical aspect of people learning to fit within a given society. Even more, internalization, involving taking social values, norms and roles into own mind, plays a significant role in shaping behavior, especially in children. According to Andersen and Taylor (2008), the imitation stage of children involves children merely copying the behavior around them. Children would just mimic what exists in the environment without an understanding of social meaning of any given behavior. The American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, AACAP (2011) indicates a significant increase in video games noted to constitute a multi-billion dollar industry. They come in all forms of technologies including through the Internet. In the same way, they also have varied content with others being educational while others involve criminal behavior and killing of people and animals among others. The major concern has been on the impact of video gaming on children’s behavior because while some promote problem solving and learning, other games with violent content have arouse much debate. As such, exposing children to video games would shape their behavior in a given manner depending on the content and duration of exposure.
Exposure to violent video games has been noted to cause antisocial behavior among children. Specifically, Carnagey and Anderson (2005) review the impact of video games that reward violence noting that such rewards promote aggression in the outside context. It would increase hostile feelings and aggressive thinking in the immediate context. This would be learnt and nourished in such a child such that it would be believed that even in real-world conflicts, violence would lead to positive results, thus a long term increase in aggressive behavior. This could be attributed to the high competition intensity in violent games as opposed to non-violent games that are largely non-competitive. The long term aggressive behavior would be well explained by the information processing theory which argues that exposing children to violence through the media or in real life promotes acquisition of...

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