Online gaming can boost school scores

August 8, 2016

Teenagers who regularly play online video games tend to improve their school results, according to new research from RMIT University in Melbourne, Australia.

But who visit Facebook or chat sites every day are more likely to fall behind in maths, reading and science.

Associate Professor Alberto Posso, from RMIT's School of Economics, Finance and Marketing, investigated the results of testing by the globally recognised Program for International Student Assessment.

PISA tested more than 12,000 Australian 15-year-olds in maths, reading and science, as well as collecting data on the students' online activities.

Posso said video games could help students to apply and sharpen skills learned at school.

"Students who play online games almost every day score 15 points above the average in maths and 17 points above the average in science.

"When you play online games you're solving puzzles to move to the next level and that involves using some of the general knowledge and skills in maths, reading and science that you've been taught during the day," he said.

"Teachers should consider incorporating popular video games into teaching - so long as they're not violent ones."

Posso said teenagers who used Facebook or chat every day scored 20 points worse in maths than students who never used social media.

"Students who are regularly on social media are, of course, losing time that could be spent on study - but it may also indicate that they are struggling with , reading and and are going online to socialise instead.

"Teachers might want to look at blending the use of Facebook into their classes as a way of helping those students engage."

Posso said it was important to recognise that other factors could have a major impact on teenagers' progress.

Repeating an academic year or skipping classes could be as bad or worse for scores than high use of .

Indigenous students or those from minority ethnic or linguistic groups were also at greater risk of falling behind than those using Facebook or chat every day.

The research, "Internet usage and educational outcomes among 15-year-old Australian " has been published in the International Journal of Communication.

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5 comments

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Nik_2213
1 / 5 (1) Aug 08, 2016
Except when they don't...

Spending every spare hour on-line bossing a platoon in 'WoW' or the like is BAD for your grades. Worse if success on-line makes you over-confident...
dieseltaylor
1 / 5 (1) Aug 09, 2016
Rather a one-eyed approach one suspects. Playing chess frequently or Scrabble might provide even stronger effects - but then on-line games may include them. However from the short intro the type of video game is not mentioned and the suspicion is that they are mainly the popular reactive shooter type.
StudentofSpiritualTeaching
not rated yet Aug 13, 2016
The full study text at http://ijoc.org/i...586/1742 cautions against the violent flavour of online games. Scientists are slowly getting it that encountering violence in reality or a virtual setting harms your psyche if you don't take countermeasures in education or self-education. See for example this study: http://journals.p....0111790
RhoidSlayer
not rated yet Aug 14, 2016
and these games aren't even designed to improve scholastic and social skills

assassins creed is entirely responsible for my knowledge of paris geography
antialias_physorg
1 / 5 (1) Aug 14, 2016
Posso said video games could help students to apply and sharpen skills learned at school.

They might have it backwards. People who compete already have the mindset to improve. People who don't have that mindset stay in their comfort zone (e.g. on social sites where nothing much develops but all the conversation pretty much move 'sideways'). Pushing people without a competitive mindset on online gaming platforms is just a recipe for creating frustration.

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