Study: Games Reduce Homework Time

Posted on July 5, 2007

Reuters reports that a new study has found that playing video games reduces homework time by as much as 30% for boys and girls. However, the study found the amount of time kids spent with family and friends was not affected.

Boys who play video games on school days spend 30 percent less time reading and girls spend 34 percent less time doing homework than those who do not play such games, U.S. researchers said on Monday.

But they said video games do not appear to interfere significantly with time spent with family and friends.

"Gamers did spend less time reading and doing homework. But they didn't spend less time interacting with their parents or their friends, nor did they spend less time in sports or active leisure activities," said Hope Cummings of the University of Michigan, whose study appears in the Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine.

The study comes as U.S. doctors voice growing concern about the long-term effects of video games.

For some reason gaming affected boys and girls differently: boy gamers did less reading homework and girl gamers did less non-reading homework. One expert involved in the study and interviewed by Reuters said the study could mean that gamers are completing their homework and reading assignments faster than non-gamers. Hope Cummings of the University of Michigan told Reuters that "Gamers may actually be more effective in completing homework assignments, and as a result, they spend less time doing homework. We need to look deeper into what is going on." That would obviously be the most optimistic view of the study's results from a gamers perspective.

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