Digital Games: A Context for Cognitive Development New Directions for Child and Adolescent Development, Number 139

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  • Edition: 1st
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2013-04-01
  • Publisher: Jossey-Bass

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In the United States and in many other countries around the world, digital games have become an integral part of children’s lives. Discussions of research on youth and digital games often focus solely on negative effects (e.g., of violent video games), but this is far from the whole story. As natural problem-solving activities, digital games provide a rich context for applied cognition.

This volume explores topics such as:

  • The benefits of digital games for children and adolescents’ cognitive skills
  • The nature of their learning from educational media
  • The influence of developmental factors on their interactions with digital games
  • The use of developmental research and established educational practice to create effective educational games that they will play.

This is the 139th volume in this series. Its mission is to provide scientific and scholarly presentations on cutting edge issues and concepts in child and adolescent development. Each volume focuses on a specific new direction or research topic and is edited by experts on that topic.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction: Digital Games as a Context for Cognitive 1

Development, Learning, and Developmental Research
Fran C. Blumberg, Shalom M. Fisch

This introductory chapter outlines reasons why developmental psychologists should care about children’s and adolescents’ learning in the context of digital games and previews each of the chapters composing the volume.

2. The Challenge of Audience Reception: A Developmental 11
Model for Educational Game Engagement
John L. Sherry

The author presents a model for research and development of educational games based on uses and gratifications theory from communication science and on developmental science and cognitive science findings.

3. Engagement States and Learning from Educational Games 21
Kirby Deater-Deckard, Mido Chang, Michael E. Evans

The authors present an innovative and comprehensive model of engagement states experienced during learning and apply that model to research on educational game development.

4. Applying Developmental Theory and Research to the 31
Creation of Educational Games
Glenda Revelle

An overview is presented of key theoretical observations and research based insight regarding children’s development, including discussion of practical implications for game design.

5 . The Impact of Recreational Video Game Play on Children’s 41
and Adolescents’ Cognition
Fran C. Blumberg, Elizabeth A. Altschuler, Debby E. Almonte, Maxwell I. Mileaf

This chapter reviews research concerning the cognitive benefits of video game play among children and adolescents and their impressions of video games as learning tools.

6. Electronic Gaming and the Obesity Crisis 51
Sandra L. Calvert, Amanda E. Staiano, Bradley J. Bond

The authors examine the positive contributions of digital game play to combating the current pediatric obesity crisis.

7. Cross-Platform Learning: On the Nature of Children’s 59
Learning from Multiple Media Platforms
Shalom M. Fisch

This author surveys recent studies examining cross-platform learning (i.e., learning from combined use of several media platforms) and how such learning compares to learning from one medium.

8. Commentary—Games for Learning: Vast Wasteland or a 71
Digital Promise?
Michael H. Levine, Sarah E. Vaala

This chapter reviews benefi ts of digital game play research and development for improving educational attainment among the nation’s youth, and identifies some directions for future research.


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