Video Games have often been heavily criticized by many in the media with two main arguments, that video games cause violence in children and have no positive benefits. But the media rarely shines light on the opposite side, that there are actually a myriad of benefits to playing video games and using technology.
The argument about violence is old and beat. In fact, the studies coming out of universities are actually finding the opposite; that playing video games leads to a reduced level of violence in children. This is just the start of the benefits of video games. We should be moving towards embracing the technology for what it can do, and help youth achieve success in other aspects of their personal life. Video games and education go hand in hand.
The research coming out from studies is showing more and more benefits from esports. These kinds of games have been linked to not only improve attention rates but also increase problem solving skills, literacy, and higher skills in mathematics. When you look at all the benefits studies find in video games and compare it to the Ontario Ministry of Education’s 21st Century Competencies guide, video games are not only recognized as one of the emerging tools for education, but they also help improve all aspects that the guide seeks to target.
Rather than scolding youth for “wasting their time in front of a television,” education boards globally should be investigating ways to engage students by using video games as learning aids. We are moving into the new era of e-learning and education, particularly in Ontario, that can pave the way for new emerging career opportunities in the esports, video game, and technology industries.
The esports industry has a diverse ecosystem of professions that are now viable in today’s world. Just this year esports has been projected to produce $1.1 Billion in revenue, without including other revenue lines commonly associated with esports like Twitch streaming, Youtube videos, and other social platforms.
We must adapt to embrace the collaboration, information and digital literacy that children are now surrounded by to allow them to not only find success in the education system and in personal achievement, but also through learning how to produce with the technology rather than simply consume.