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It’s that time of the month again where a new study surfaces saying gaming either makes your kid retarded or a genius. The latest findings edge closer to the genius scale this time around, with an MSU study saying that gaming can help increase creativity in kids.
According to Eureka Alert [via Gamma Squad at Uproxx], a Michigan State University research study surfaced, which included 491 survey participants asking how frequently they used different types of technology. As stated on Geek-o-System the survey was measured using the Torrence Test of Creativity Figural to gauge the 12-year olds across multiple creative fields, including drawing and writing.
Linda Jackson, professor of psychology and lead researcher on the project believes that the study can be used by game developers to help sculpt specific gaming experiences around the growing mind of a child, since gaming seems to be a pretty big part growing up these days. Jackson stated that…
"Once they do that, video games can be designed to optimize the development of creativity while retaining their entertainment values such that a new generation of video games will blur the distinction between education and entertainment,"
There’s already a genre out there for that kind of cultivating experience and it’s called Edutainment. The problem is that it’s trumped by stuff like Pokemon and Call of Duty.
For the most part at least these positive findings stand as a contrast to many other studies out there that usually say your kid will turn into a psychopathic, raving, murderous rapist by playing Super Mario Bros. and Scribblenauts. All right, all right, they don’t actually say that but they do incline the public at large to believe that child aggression is linked to violent video games, and that video games causes gamers to get violent, or that racing games are more harmful to your psyche than action games.
On the upside, recent studies also found that action gamers have higher cognitive functions than non-gamers, and FPS design legend John Carmack thinks games reduce violent tendencies. You can take that for what it’s worth.
Overall, gamers can chalk this study up as a victory over the conservative oppression against the liberal rights of gaming culture. Although, don’t cheer for too long because pretty soon I imagine another study will surface detailing how too much gaming as a young child will cause your penis to shrink when you get older. I guess you better start stocking up on Viagra.