The researchers, Douglas and Ronald Gentile, surveyed 2500 young people. Students, their peers and their teachers completed surveys at two points during the school year. The surveys assessed the subject?s aggressive thoughts and self-reported fights, and their media habits ? including violent video exposure. When peers and teachers rated the other person?s behaviour, it was found that playing multiple aggressive video games increased aggressive behaviour by 73% when compared to those who played a mix of violent and non violent games. The risk increased by 263% when the researchers compared multiple violent video users to people who play only non violent video games.
The Gentile's found that aggressive thoughts and behaviour increased over time in the people who played multiple violent video games. These individuals changed to have a greater hostile attribution bias and increased aggressive behaviour over time.
The researchers document how violent video games motivate learners. They suggest that video games encourage the individual ?to persevere in learning and mastering skills to navigate through complex problems and changing environments ? just like good teachers do?
This study is important because it shows that video games can teach aggression. However, this is not all bad news. The researchers report that video games can be effective teaching tools, and can be beneficial to classroom learning. To read the press release click here. To access the article, which you may need to pay for, click here