Posted on August 02, 2018 @ 10:44 GMT in news
In June 2018, a commentary article entitled “Video game loot boxes are psychologically akin to gambling” by Aaron Drummond and James D. Sauer (2018) was published in Nature. The authors assess if loot boxes (i.e., purchasable randomized rewards in video games) are analogous to gambling and, if so, whether or not they should be regulated under the same legal terms.
In order to assess the similarity between loot boxes and gambling, the loot box elements of 22 select video games were evaluated against the unique criteria that distinguish gambling…Continue reading »
Posted on July 24, 2018 @ 09:12 GMT in conferences
In a few short weeks, I will be joining some of my favorite people at PAX West in Seattle, WA. This time around, I will be participating in two different panels.
Link is thrust into his destiny of having to defeat evil by collecting items and tools throughout Hyrule, proving himself a hero and eventually leading to a showdown with a villain. However, his journey is not just as simple as defeating evil and saving the princess. There are multiple and significant psychological concepts at play throughout different variations of this video game. This panel will Link the psychological concepts found in each game for discussion…Continue reading »
Posted on March 18, 2018 @ 19:03 GMT in news
Have a tween or teen obsessed with video games? Find yourself in a constant battle over how much your kids spend on video games?
Earlier in the year, I spoke with Annie Fox about A Parent’s Guide to Video Games about kids’ gaming, its effect on social and emotional development, and why we might not need to worry so much.
You can see the interview, here.…Continue reading »
Posted on October 16, 2017 @ 16:13 GMT in news
Back in August, I was interviewed by the Philadelphia Inquirer about the role that video games can play in spirituality. Specifically, how video games may help one connect with their spirituality and possibly induce feelings of transcendence.
This is a relatively new line of research, however, we do know that video games can give us what no other medium can - the unique ability to explore the roles of good and evil in a free (i.e., free from real-world repercussions) space. In no other medium are we able to enact the…Continue reading »
Posted on July 18, 2017 @ 15:46 GMT in news
This week a new article published by Psychology Today entitled “Parenting in the Era of Addictive Electronics” puts forward the assumption that “screen time, particularly the interactive kind acts like a stimulant, not unlike caffeine, amphetamines, or cocaine.” This is not the first article to make such claims, in fact I blogged a New York Post article a few months ago touting the same connections.
While I can get on board with the advice offered to parents in the Psychology Today article (especially #12), it needs to be clear that it is scientifically inaccurate to discuss screen time as analogous to drug addiction. This is a comparison makes a nice headline but these connections are tenuous, blown out of proportion, and only argued by a…Continue reading »
Posted on April 30, 2017 @ 20:24 GMT in news
What a time to be someone who…Continue reading »
Posted on March 11, 2017 @ 12:26 GMT in news
I am proud to announce that I will be contributing a new monthly column to Fangirl Magazine called “Ask Dr. Rachel!”. In it, I will be fielding questions posed through social media about all things video games, and game studies, with a focus on media effects questions.
Have a question?…Continue reading »
Posted on February 28, 2017 @ 13:33 GMT in publications
Concern about sexism, misogyny, and harrassment in online games is of an ever growing concern among parents around the globe. This is perhaps because online games continue to grow in popularity among female players (in fact, a 2015 Pew Research study found females are more likely to own gaming consoles than men).
I address these concerns and (do my best…Continue reading »
Posted on February 13, 2017 @ 10:03 GMT in OpEd
In August 2016, Dr. Nicholas Kardas published an article in the New York Post entitled “It’s ‘digital herion’: How screens turn kids into psychotic junkies”. In the opening paragraphs, he describes how playing Minecraft on an iPad quickly turned a 6-year old boy into an angry, obsessed, and addicted player.
Dr. Kardas goes on to explain that screen time has an inherently negative impact on children, as he states, “Many parents intuitively understand that ubiquitous glowing screens are having a negative effects on children”. But, according to Dr. Kardas, it is “even worse than we…Continue reading »
Posted on December 24, 2016 @ 13:34 GMT in news
Posted on December 20, 2016 @ 15:18 GMT in news
This morning I had the pleasure of talking about A Parent’s Guide to Video Games on my local NBC affiliate news station. It is especially important to talk about video games this time of year, as many parents are scrambling to get their children’s favourite games and game consoles under the tree.
It may seem surprising to some that video games is still seen as a treacherous place for many parents despite the fact that they have been in our everyday lives for the last 30 to 40 years or so. However, turn on the news at any given hour and you will likely see way. Stories about…Continue reading »
Posted on December 03, 2016 @ 11:11 GMT in publications
My new book, A Parent’s Guide to Video Games: The essential guide to understanding how video games impact your child’s physical, social, and psychological well-being, was released this week!
Despite the fact that video games have been in our everyday lives for almost 40 years now, the world of video games remains a treacherous place for many parents. Always…Continue reading »
Posted on August 04, 2016 @ 19:50 GMT in news
The American Journal of Play published a review of The Video Game Debate this week. Taking a scholarly approach, Patrick Markey (Villanova University) does a great job of overviewing what The Video Game Debate… does and does not address. Perhaps surprisingly, Dr. Markey rightfully points out that The Video Game Debate… does not truly debate video game effects, but rather provides a general overview of the current…Continue reading »
Posted on July 19, 2016 @ 12:49 GMT in news
Recently, I have started to take on some research and design consultancy work. This has allowed me to continue my work in the field of psychology/game studies as well as dabble in specific areas of research I may not…Continue reading »
Posted on April 29, 2016 @ 15:43 GMT in news
This week Massively OP published an op-ed on understanding video game research. It does a really great job of outlining what is important to pay attention to when digesting this kind of research as well as what should potentially be questioned when interpreting the (negative) findings that we often seen strewn across the headlines. For anyone with an interest in video game research, I highly recommend checking it out!
You can find the article…Continue reading »
Posted on January 04, 2016 @ 11:31 GMT in news
When tragedies such as mass shootings occur, blame is often placed (at least partially) on video games (see here and here). As interactive spaces, video games – and violent video games in particular – are often at the centre of the debate,…Continue reading »
Posted on December 19, 2015 @ 20:41 GMT in news
I am often asked for advice about how to be a smart shopper when buying video games. With Christmas just around the corner, I thought it was a good time to post the advice I have been anecdotally sharing with my close friends and family over the last few weeks.
Below…Continue reading »
Posted on December 16, 2015 @ 10:01 GMT in news
This week I joined the team at Computer America (the longest running nationally syndicated radio show on computers and technology) to talk about “The Video Game Debate: Unravelling the Physical, Social and Psychological Effects of Digital Games”.
Lucky for us, Computer America is not only broadcast on…Continue reading »
Posted on September 17, 2015 @ 14:11 GMT in news
New Book Announcement: The Video Game Debate: Unravelling the Physical, Social, and Psychological Effects of Digital Games (Kowert & Quandt, Eds).
Prof. Thorsten Quandt and I are proud to announce the release of The Video Game Debate: Unravelling the Physical, Social, and Psychological Effects of Digital Games. Now, for the first time, you can catch up with the state of the…Continue reading »
Posted on February 09, 2015 @ 15:16 GMT in News
The popularization and affordability of Internet connectivity has changed the way video games are played by allowing individuals to connect worldwide in shared gaming spaces. These highly social environments allow players to connect, interact with, and learn from each other. This technology has greatly expanded video games’…Continue reading »
Posted on November 29, 2014 @ 19:52 GMT in News
In an attempt to combat some of the bad press that games, gaming, and gamers have received over the last few months (#GamerGate anyone?), Good Games Writing launched their #OrangeDot Campaign this month. The primary aim of this campaign was to help “take back this space we hold so dearly…” and spread positivity about games…Continue reading »