Ferguson, Christopher J. (2013) Violent video games and the Supreme Court: Lessons for the scientific community in the wake of Brown v. Entertainment Merchants Association, American Psychologist, Vol 68(2), Feb-Mar 2013, 57-74
In June 2011 the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that video games enjoy full free speech protections and that the regulation of violent game sales to minors is unconstitutional. The Supreme Court also referred to psychological research on violent video games as “unpersuasive” and noted that such research contains many methodological ﬂaws. Recent reviews in many scholarly journals have come to similar conclusions, although much debate continues. Given past statements by the American Psychological Association linking video game and media violence with aggression, the Supreme Court ruling, particularly its critique of the science, is likely to be shocking and disappointing to some psychologists. In this article the author argues that the psychological community would be better served by reﬂecting on this research and considering whether the scientiﬁc process failed by permitting and even encouraging statements about video game violence that exceeded the data or ignored conﬂicting data. Although it is likely that debates on this issue will continue, a move toward caution and conservatism as well as increased dialogue between scholars on opposing sides of this debate will be necessary to restore scientiﬁc credibility. The current article reviews the involvement of the psychological science community in the Brown v. Entertainment Merchants Association case and suggests that it might learn from some of the errors in this case for the future.
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Judy Robertson (2013) The influence of a game making project on male and female learners’ attitudes to computing, Computer Science, Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh, UK
There is a pressing need for gender inclusive approaches to engage young people in computer science. A recent popular approach has been to harness learners’ enthusiasm for computer games to motivate them to learn computer science concepts through game authoring. The results of this study indicate that both boys and girls in the early years of high school have positive attitudes to computing and want to find out more about it. Boys are more likely to be more strongly positive than girls. The pupils thought that the game making project was fun and around half of them would recommend it to a friend. Their teachers believed that the project was a highly positive experience for their pupils in terms of motivation, and that it benefited pupils right across the ability spectrum.
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Hagbood, MP Jacob and Ainsworth, Shaaron E (2011) Motivating children to learn effectively: exploring the value of intrinsic integration in educational games, Journal of the Learning Sciences, 20 (2), 169-206.
The concept of intrinsic motivation has been considered to lie at the heart of the user engagement created by digital games. Yet despite this, educational software has traditionally attempted to harness games as extrinsic motivation by using them as a sugar-coating for learning content. This paper tests the concept of intrinsic integration as a way of creating a more productive relationship between educational games and their learning content. Two studies assessed this approach by designing and evaluating an educational game for teaching mathematics to seven to eleven year olds called Zombie Division. The results of these studies showed that children learned more from the intrinsic version of the game under fixed time limits and spent seven times longer playing it in free time situations. Together they offer evidence for the genuine value of an intrinsic approach for creating effective educational games. The theoretical and commercial implications of these findings are discussed.
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Milada Krejci, Kai Wada, Miyo Nakade, Hitomi Takeuchi, Teruki Noji, Tetsuo Harada (2011) Effects of Video Game Playing on the Circadian Typology and Mental Health of Young Czech and Japanese Children, Psychology 2011. Vol.2, No.7, 674-680
The objective of this study is to examine the effects of video game playing on sleep-wake cycles and mental health of young Czech and Japan children. A cross-sectional survey with 497 Czech children (240 girls, 257 boys; mean age of 4.60 years; 49 ̊ – 51 ̊N) and 599 Japanese children (314 girls, 285 boys: 3.79 years; 33 ̊N) from 20 kindergartens and nursery schools. Habitual video game playing in the evening may make children more evening-typed and it may also be speculated to make them more aggressive in both countries.
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Angel del Blanco, Javier Torrente, Pablo Moreno-Ger, Baltasar Fernández-Manjón (2011) Enhancing Adaptive Learning and Assessment in Virtual Learning Environments with Educational Games, Intelligent Learning Systems and Advancements in Computer-Aided Instruction: Emerging Studies
The rising acceptance of Virtual Learning Environments (VLE) in the e- Learning field poses new challenges such as producing student-centered courses which can be automatically tailored to each student’s needs. For this purpose digital games can be used, taking advantage of their flexibility (good video games always try to adapt to different players) and capabilities to stealthily track players’ activity, either for producing an accurate user model or enhancing the overall assessment capabilities of the system. In this chapter we discuss the integration of digital games in Virtual Learning Environments and the need of standards that allow the interoperable communication of games and VLE. We also present a middle-ware architecture to integrate video games in VLEs that addresses the technical barriers posed by the integration. We present a case study with the implementation of the architecture in the <e-Adventure> game authoring platform, along with three examples of video game integration in educational settings.
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Anuj Kumar, Pooja Reddy, Anuj Tewari, Rajat Agrawal, Matthew Kam (2012) Improving Literacy in Developing Countries Using Speech Recognition-Supported Games on Mobile Devices, To appear in Proceedings of ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI ’12), Austin, Texas, May 5-10, 2012.
Learning to read in a second language is challenging, but highly rewarding. For low-income children in developing countries, this task can be significantly more challenging because of lack of access to high-quality schooling, but can potentially improve economic prospects at the same time. A synthesis of research findings suggests that practicing recalling and vocalizing words for expressing an intended meaning could improve word reading skills – including reading in a second language – more than silent recognition of what the given words mean. Unfortunately, many language learning software do not support this instructional approach, owing to the technical challenges of incorporating speech recognition support to check that the learner is vocalizing the correct word. In this paper, we present results from a usability test and two subsequent experiments that explore the use of two speech recognition- enabled mobile games to help rural children in India read words with understanding.
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