Are students spending too much time gaming?

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERABy Jennie Tanner

Video games can be a good way of relieving stress on busy college students. They are primarily focused on their studies and earning a degree, so they are often found at the library or their dorm rooms with their nose in a book or their work spread out in front of them on a desk.

According to a study done by USA Today, “it might seem obvious that more studying equals better grades. But research has been unable to prove it.”

A prime place to challenge this would be a college campus with students who enjoy playing video games, like our own Fitchburg State University. Some students prefer to spend time playing online games like World of Warcraft or Minecraft. One student, who wishes to remain anonymous, says he plays an average of four hours of video games per day.

USA Today reported on Todd Stinebrickner, who did a study in which the findings were “that students whose roommate brought a video game console did not exhibit different levels of class attendance, partying, study efficiency or paid employment — all factors that also could affect grades. But there was a substantial drop in time spent studying when one roommate brought a video game player. This means that the lower grades of students whose roommates brought video games can be attributed to the fact that these students studied less.”

Fitchburg State University’s policy states that for every hour of class time a student has, he or she should spend two hours out of the classroom focusing on homework. In other words, a student should spend twice as much time studying as they are in class. If this is true and every student takes an average of four to five classes, then where are students finding time for so many hours of gaming?

One student who wishes to remain anonymous stated that she sometimes stays up all night to play a game if she gets into it.

“I just lose track of time, and all of a sudden I look out the window and the sun is shining.”

She also noted, “As long as students are getting [their] homework done, it shouldn’t be a problem that we play video games and stay up all night. We attend class and do the work to get our degree, so we should be able to have some fun while we’re doing it. It can’t all be studying, you know?”

She and many other gamers share the same stance on the gaming issue. Just so long as the work gets done and the grades stay high, there isn’t an issue with students playing too many video games while they are at school.

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