Video Games Help Children Learn Ethical and Moral Values: Study

If your child wants to play video games do not stop him or her because it can teach them ethical and moral values.

Yes you read that right.  A latest study conducted by the University of Victoria, Canada, states that children become more ethically and morally aware by playing video games.

For the five-year study, researchers examined children aged between 13 and 17. They analyzed the lessons children learnt through games.

"What we found was that what they were learning was a whole lot deeper and more profound than we had imagined," education professor Dr Kathy Sanford told The Globe and Mail. "They are doing a lot of problem solving and strategizing. They are learning collaboration and leadership skills."

"But the most profound thing that got me really thinking about their civic engagement is that they are actively making ethical and moral decisions all the time. They are trying out roles through the characters in the stories. If they act badly, if they choose to be evil, they see the significant results of each of the decisions they make."

Dr Sanford recognized the fact that generally parents are against video games because they are sedantaary and violent sometimes. But she says that the same parents do not criticize their children reading books.

The study also found that rather than self-interest, children learn to cooperate with others.

 "In online games, they don't necessarily choose their teammates, so they have to negotiate whose strengths are used at what time," said Dr Sanford. "These are not one-off strategies. Some of the participants have talked about the usefulness of their leadership skills in running a guild in a game, and then going into a high-school classroom and navigating that structure."

The research provides a different side and positive effects of playing video games, which has been most of the time overlooked by parents. Dr Sanford suggests that worried parents should  engage t heir children in discussions of what they are playing and show a genuine interest in their virtual world, which may be a little difficult but will prove beneficial in the long run.

 "Some of the characters are problematic to me, there is a lot of sexism, but we need to talk to kids about (videogames), not just ban them."

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