First Impression Post; Learning

--Original published at olivyahvanek

Violence in video games have been very controversial when it comes to whether or not it affects how children view violence and how it affects them mentally. I think that when there is violence in video games it can go either one way or another when it comes to affecting children’s views on violence.

Children who play video games with violence in the games can either be affected mentally scarring them from the violence and gore that occurs in the game and this has the potential to make children scared of the games and scared that it could happen in real life. This could really affect their mental state and make them too scared to do certain things because they are scared of what could happen to them because of what they saw in their video games.

I think that another way that this could go would be the children could potentially be inspired by these video games, which could make them think it is okay to do and start participating in violent actions. Video games could make kids think that it is okay for them to do violent things to other people because they saw it in the game and everyone in the game participates in these violent actions.

I think that violent video games can affect all children differently because they could either scar them by scaring them and making them nervous to go out and do things on their own. These video games also have the potential to make children think that violence is the answer, but I think that these video games can be dangerous for children to play because of the potential they have on their mentality when it comes to violence.

Violence in Video Games

--Original published at Rickster's Psychology Blog

My perspective on violent video games will be slightly biased. I’m on the verge of playing Call of Duty as a career so I think I could offer a unique opinion on the subject.

From my perspective, video games have always offered me an escape from life. I have had extremely strict parents. I was never allowed to go out as a kid. Nowadays, I’m still required to go through a 15 minute interview with each parent before I go anywhere. Most days I can’t put up with it so I lock myself in my room and I take my anger and frustration out on the game.

I’ve met many people and made many friends throughout the course of my e-sports career. They all play video games for similar reasons as me. Some play to stay out of trouble. Some play because they’re severely injured or have some sort of medical or mental problem so they can’t function normally in society. Some have lost everything and games are all they have left.

I don’t believe video games make people violent. If anything, they keep people from committing violent acts because they can get the violent vibes out of their system by playing video games.

I think its ludicrous people are calling for the banning of video games. These games have changed in recent years. For example, in Call of Duty, much more teamwork, communication, and self sacrifice is required in order to win consistently. Players need to learn to communicate efficiently. A much quicker reaction time is required now so this would help people when driving or when quick decision needs to be made. These games are helping children with poor eye sight have better cognitive recognition and better peripheral vision.

I think video games have helped many more people than they have hurt.

Chapter 7 First Impression Post

--Original published at Noah'sPSY105blog

For my first impression post on Chapter 7, I have decided to discuss the second prompt about violent video games.

My prospective on violent video games is fairly neutral. Although I could see why many people could think that violent video games may be one of the causes as to why children are becoming violent as a whole, I think that it may be somewhat unfair to pin the blame solely on the games themselves.

In my opinion, it would be absurd to try and ban violent video games altogether for several different reasons. The first being that it would be unfair for individuals above this certain age range who enjoy playing these certain violent video games. Not only that, but children are already prohibited from buying certain violent games until they reach a certain age. Due to this, I think the blame should be shifted from the developers of the video games, and be placed on the parents and guardians of these children, because without their assistance the children would not be able to get their hands on the games in the first place.

Chapter 7 First Impression Post

--Original published at Courtney's College Blog

I believe that violent video games should be permitted, as long as parents use the correct precautions. Young children are easily influenced by their environment, but once they enter the formal operations stage, they can handle it responsibly. Around age 12, children have the capability to understand that even though they can engage in violence in a video game, they can not engage in it in the real world. Piaget’s formal operations stage allows children to think abstractly. This is why their brains can distinguish between what is appropriate for a video game and real life.

I have two younger brothers, ages 12 and 15, and they have been engaging in violent video games for years. For one of my brothers’ eighth birthday, he wanted Grand Theft Auto for his Play Station. My parents were hesitant, so they asked some of their friends with children of the same age. An overwhelming amount of those parents allowed their children to play violent video games, so my brother received the game for his birthday. He is not a violent child, no more than any typical boy, but that is only one case.

Before video games are permanently banned, there should be a research study of the correlation between violent video games and violence in the real world. There can be longitudinal study with three groups: children exposed to violent games before age twelve, after age twelve, and not at all. If there is an overwhelming correlation between video game players and violence regardless of age, then they should be banned. If there are much less children that were over the age of twelve that engaged in violence in the real world, video games should be permitted as long as parents use the correct precautions. When the child becomes interested in these types of games, parents should ask them why they want the game, and determine if they are responsible enough to handle it.

Violence in the Media

--Original published at Sherika's Psych Blog

Cries of video games or other variations of media that depict extreme violence for decades have been pointed at as the source of many problems over the past several decades. From being blamed as a contributing factor to school shootings, mass shootings, and dozens of other largely devastating events, politicians and government leaders alike have pushed back against violence in the media and in some cases have argued for video game addiction to be listed as an actual psychiatric condition in the World Health Organization’s guidelines.

On an issue that is both hotly contested and argued about, my personal belief is that there’s no or very little correlation between violence in the media and an increase in aggressive behavior. According to a recent article by Forbes, the same conclusion is also met. According to the article, the Oxford Internet Institute and the University of Oxford conducted a study in which a combination of subjective and objective data was used in order to determine the correlation between teen aggression and violence in video games. The study utilized data from not only teens, but their parents and caretakers to judge levels of aggression. Something previous studies, the article notes, had never been done. Furthermore, the level of violence in video games was determined by the current standard and classification of video game ratings that are used today instead of the subjects determination about what constituted “violence” in one.

While the sample of the subjects was mostly confined to British teens aged 14 to 15, along with their parental units or caretakers who totaled for 2,008 subjects in all. The study as researchers noted found no correlation between violence and video games, with researchers expanding upon their findings further with Professor Andrew Przybylski clarifying:

” The idea that violent video games drive real-world aggression is a popular one, but it hasn’t tested very well over time. Despite interest in the topic by parents and policy-makers, the research has not demonstrated that there is cause for concern. “

Calls to permanently ban video games from consumer consumption has always been merely a call to find a scapegoat to blame these horrible events that happen universally on a single monomer. Instead of confronting and researching the root causes behind why mass shootings occur, or the purveyor’s intent, instead, the easy cause is to blame something that people already are wary about. This has been done with not only video games, but metal music, as well as differing fashion subcultures as well. It’s easier to blame something that people lack an understanding of, rather than to blame something that people refuse to believe.

Chapter 7 First Impression

--Original published at JVershinski's Blog

My perspective on violent video games is that they do not insinuate for children, or anyone playing them for that matter, to go do something similar to what they are doing in the game. I do not think that violent video games are making children more violent and I think these criticisms of the video game industry are unsupported by meaningful research.

As far as I know, there is little to no research dictating that violent video games promote violence in children. There is research that supports the notion that video games, while some may be considered violent, do help to improve social skills as well as hand-eye coordination in many people. Additionally, who is to be the judge of what is considered violent and what isn’t? Why should a first person shooting game be considered more violent than Mario? Both games promote violence and the killing of “bad people”, yet the shooting game is considered more violent.

Also, the idea to permanently ban “violent” video games is just baffling. First and foremost, I can’t think of one game that does not have some sort of violence in it. This ban, if it were to ban all violent video games, would essentially wipe out the entire video game industry. The video game industry is worth more than $100 billion, and wiping it out would not go without economic consequences. I also think the irresponsibility of parents to allow their child to play a game that is rated for an older age group does not help the situation. Just because you let little 10 year old Timmy play Call of Duty does not mean the video game is to blame.

Chapter 7: Learning

--Original published at Jessica K's College Blog

Learning is everything people do to get on with their lives in the world, that learning helps them grow into the personalities and mindsets they have now. And no matter what, there is always something new for people young and old to know and recognize that goes outside of the educational system.

However, people can learn how to approach new information, mostly on a combination of senses (reaction to a stimulus or classical conditioning) or correlations of one item relating to another (operant conditioning).

The difference between these conditions all relates to how a person’s experience is defined by the initial interaction. For example, if a child eats a vegetable for the first time, they would most likely be disgusted by it based on taste, sight, and smell, thus avoiding anything related to vegetables.

On the contrary, with operant conditioning relates to when a child observing their parent for different stimuli, like mannerisms, daily habits, and language. With the information in hand, a child will then learn how to interact with others if it relates to a reward.

The points in learning mostly correlates to how the end result will either benefit or hinder the person when faced with a new situation, the same being said for animals as well.

For those studies made by Ivan Pavlov, John B. Watson, and many other psychologists of the time, people can greatly rely on the understanding of how they react to new stimuli, and how they have adapted and grown to adjust to such situations.

Learning: Violence in the Media

--Original published at Olivia's College Blog

The increased amount of attention given to violence in the media, particularly video games, is a concern that I fully support. I think that the exposure children are having to the violence portrayed in movies, video games, and social media is toxic because it consumes such a large portion of their time. In moderation, I believe that video games, TV time, and social media use don’t have to be considered completely detrimental to the child. This is not the case when violent media is used in excess. For that reason, I think drawing attention to this growing problem is important for understanding the impacts of early childhood exposure in violent video games.

For children, whose brains have yet to fully develop, over-exposure to the crime, gore, and violence of video games can send an inappropriate message early on. As we learned in our lessons of Piaget’s cognitive developmental theory, children learn through schemas. New information is added to existing schemas or to create new ones altogether, called assimilation and accommodation. The violence and graphic, bloody displays of video games could potentially be very detrimental to the development of a child, because they are receiving that violence and it is being incorporated into their existing beliefs.

I think a permanent ban on violent video games is rather extreme. Maybe one could argue that a child will benefit from light exposure to violence in videogames, since the ‘real world’ will involve crime and other harsh realities. I don’t think we have to resort from banning violent video games altogether; a different approach could be taken. Along with the age recommendations for users of violent video games, there could be age restrictions, like 18+, when purchasing R rated games. As for parents who choose to buy them for their children, the games could include a information packet or demo CD that shows the parent what their child will be exposed to. I think if there continues to be overuse or misuse of violent video games among children, these are ways to restrict the exposure kids have with these games.

On Free Will

--Original published at Alex's Thoughts

B.F. Skinner is a respected psychologist in his own right, and asserted that there is truly no thing as free will. However he came to conclude this, I disagree with his assumption for several reasons. My evidence is that of human expression, ingenuity, and scientific logic.

Expression of emotions has always been an integral part of human culture and the fabric of society itself. While other lower beings such as dogs and cats are capable of expressing emotion, nothing comes close to the means by which humans have been able to portray it. Media, literature, and even language itself have given humans the means to describe and record the way they are feeling about a particular topic at a given time, theoretically to the point where anyone can read it thousands of years after their death. No other creature has come anywhere near that kind of power, especially if it is not recorded in their genes. So while Skinner asserts that free will can merely be attributed to genes and reactions to the environment, I would argue that free will is what drives people to develop forms of expression and art such that they may convey their individual experience to others. If individuals go to the lengths required just to convey the uniqueness of their own experience, is there really no such thing as free will and a sense of individuality that accompanies it?

As for human ingenuity, I would point to the Industrial Revolution. No other creature had the cleverness to invent machines to do work for them, perfect mathematical and chemical sciences, construct manufacturing facilities, and work together to create shining cities from metals and wood. While many organisms create communities and rely on natural materials they can either scavenge or create themselves, no creature had the ingenuity to create the machine lathe, or the steam engine. Why would a creature that has no free will bother to create such oddities when their personal energy would be much more suited to finding or growing food and constructing a shelter out of local materials? Why would our world be so complex today with its interwoven economies and technological marvels when everyone would theoretically be better off if they merely looked out for themselves? In the argument for free will, I say look no further than the plethora of manufactured goods that would not be available to you if humans had no free will like Skinner claimed.

As for the scientific logic portion of my argument, I would like to quote Rene Descartes in saying, “I think, therefore, I am”. If free will can be broken down into basic life functions, what other expressions of free will can be attributed to life functions? Do works of art and cultural significance have anything to do with basic life functions? Does the concept of calculus and abstract mathematics fall under the purview of having no free will? I can personally attest that it takes a lot of willpower and determination to willingly learn the concepts and apply them. If I can think about myself as an individual, distinguish myself from others, and hold abstract ideas in my mind with no basis in the absolute reality that I experience, then apply those concepts to change my reality, how can I not have free will? The basic idea behind Skinner’s claims were that animals without free will learn to survive and sustain themselves. If that were the case with humans, why do we spend so much energy conveying ourselves, creating machines when our energy would be better suited to sustaining basic life functions, and dreaming of abstract concepts that have little basis in reality? One could claim that our end goal would ultimately be to increase physical comfort with all these innovations, but where does the creativity for such ideas come from if not a being with free will? Especially a being with the will to create their surroundings out of an initially inhospitable and dangerous environment. As such, I would argue that free will is the purest expression of human ingenuity and creativity.


--Original published at Allison's Psych Blog

Video games are becoming such a huge part of children’s lives, at an even younger age as years go by. And with new technology comes new concepts within the games, including new and more violence. Obviously, if the children are younger, they can become influenced very easily by violence that they see in front of them on a daily basis. But I don’t personally believe that the violence in video games is causing children to become more violent. Children might think that the violence they see is normal and okay, but I don’t believe they are acting on it. For a child to want to sword fight because they’ve seen it, or even pretend to shoot guns, is completely normal, and I believe the only amount of violence acted upon. Children aren’t beating their friends or even trying to kill them. I don’t think violence should be banned within video games, but maybe not include the excessive amount in every game. I do think the people planning on banning these types of video games and scenarios have their mind in the right place, I just do not see a need to rid of them completely.