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Video Game Playing

  • Date Submitted: 01/28/2010 06:29 AM
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Video Game Playing and its Effects on Personality and Behavior in relation to Aggression

In recent years, technological advances have introduced many new forms of entertainment, one of the most popular being video games. Since their introduction, professionals and parents have become concerned with the addictive power that video games can have on people, particularly children and adolescents. Today, concern has shifted from the addictive effects of video game playing to the possible effects that they have on players’ aggression levels.

C. Braun and J. Giroux (1989) determined that the most popular category of video games is the war-type game. These are usually the most violent games, as most of them involve destroying objects and other people. This destruction can range from one-on-one combat to mass annihilation of other humans or creatures. In 1982, Surgeon General C. Everett Koop (Orlofsky, 1982) stated that video games could encourage children to mimic the violence displayed on the screen, and that these games may have adverse physical and mental effects on teenagers. Ever since Koop’s warning, parents have become increasingly concerned about the video games their children play.

Defining aggression has been a problem across many previous studies. An interesting approach was used by Edmunds and Kendrick (1980) which classifies aggression into two categories: aggression (general overt and direct behavior,) and aggressiveness (typically represented by hostile feelings). A more refined approach is used by the Buss-Durkee Inventory (1957) which has seven major subscales: Assault, Indirect Hostility, Irritability, Negativism, Resentment, Suspicion, and Verbal Hostility.

One of the most common personality assessment instruments used to examine the personality dimensions in these studies is the Eysenck Personality Questionnaire (EPQ; Eysenck & Eysenck, 1975) which consists of four scales: E...


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