Video games and grades: are they related?


Videos games have became on of the most popular past-times amongst teenagers, but does the amount of playtime affect grades?

Jack Morrell, Staff Reporter

   Whether they’re fighting for victory in Fortnite Battle Royale, battling it out in Mortal Kombat, causing mayhem in Grand Theft Auto, or roaming other virtual worlds available, video games have transformed the way most teenagers spend their free time outside of school and work.

Video games have grown to be one of the most sought after past-times as children aged 12-16 play around 12.2 hours a week, where ages 3-4 even play up to five hours a week (Psychology Today). Games exist for all different interests, from professional sports to survival.

The nuance of video games in society has raised plenty of speculation from parents, with many wondering if games are preventing their children from reaching their full potential academically.

Studies concluded by ABC News provided information that,“Video games can shoot holes in GPA. First-year students whose roommates brought a video game player to college studied 40 minutes less each day on average.”

Countering that claim, studies on Engadget believe, “video games are effective at improving coordination, problem-solving skills, enhancing memory,  and attentiveness/concentration,” which are essential in a school environment.

To test if a correlation was present between grades and hours spent playing video games, Timo Gnambs a professor of psychology, conducted a study using 3,554 students and tracked hours played with performance in key subjects such as English and Math. While playing on school nights for lengthy amounts of time did not appear to matter in terms of long-term achievement (Newsweek).

After his study Gnambs concluded, “We found only very small effects on grades and none on actual competencies,” and that there were “negligible effects of the time spent on computer games on grades or competence development.”

Although several studies have failed to determine a positive correlation between hours played and grades, many confirm that anything in overuse is harmful.

A question feed on claims, “…too much video game playing may lead to health problems. It’s hard to get enough active play and exercise if you’re always inside playing video games.”

It is important for individuals to partake in things that interest them, but everything should be taken into moderation.