Game Development Reference
In-Depth Information
pete as much as the boys and advise them not to
perceive boys' presence as intimidating. The work
of Graves and Klawe (1997) reveals that there is
statistical significance difference between boys
and girls when games are used as instructional
strategies; boys measured more progress over a
period of time than girls. Sedighian and Westerom
(1997) state that there are also differences in the
type of emphasis boys and girls make as they
play computer games; boys are more interested
in the number of puzzles which means making
quick progress.
If differences exist in the choice of computer
games between boys and girls, then part of the
solution is to make sure that suitable computer
games are selected in a way that reflects gender
preferences. The study of Guimaraes and Mur-
ray (2008) shows that males account for 90% of
students who enroll in video games while females
represent 45%. However, Guimaraes and Murray
argue that women are equally successful in playing
videogames as much as their male counterparts.
Guimaraes and Murray claim that their finding
contradicts the assumption that women are not
able to compete successfully with men in computer
games. There is also the problem of stereotyping
in computer games. Provenzo (1992) has indicated
that computer game may impact on children's at-
titudes toward gender stereotyping. For instance
in most Nintendo games, women are cast as vic-
tims and rarely as aggressors (Provenzo, 1992).
Newman (2004) maintains that 16% of women
engage in computer games; and 47% of female
characters are depicted as props or bystanders. On
the other hand, 47% of males are usually portrayed
as competitors. Teachers must consider ways to
select games for learning to avoid depicting girls
as the victims and boys as the aggressors. In the
selection of computer games, schools must be
wary of the message they are sending to the larger
society about role identity. It is interesting to note
that gamers may develop dislike for a particular
game if they master the skill embedded in such a
game; they may become incline to look for new
games in the market.
STUDENTS' RESPONSES
ON COMPUTER GAMES AS
MOTIVATION FOR LEARNING
The question which baffles game researchers and
educational practitioners is: why do many young
people indulge in playing computer games for
long hours without feeling bored or tired but are
unable to show similar zeal for learning. To re-
spond to these questions, seven graduate students
in a four-year college in the southern part of the
United States are interviewed. These students were
made of four females and three males and they
volunteered to be interviewed. They are between
the ages of 25 and 33 years. The participants are
made of four African American and three Cau-
casian students. The interview is conducted over
the telephone. The researcher interviewed each
participant separately; one at a time. All the par-
ticipants are asked the same questions. After each
question is asked, responses that emerge are in the
form of discussion. Therefore, the interview can
be described as semi-structured. Interview with
each participant is recorded; a draft copy of the
interview is given to each participant to verify the
accuracy of the comments. The duration of the
interview is about seven minutes. The following
questions guided the interview:
1. You have acknowledged that you play
computer games at regular interval before
scheduling this interview; discuss what
motivates you to play computer games.
2. Does computer game motivate you to learn?
3. How will you describe computer game?
4. How will you describe learning?
5. How do you feel after playing computer
games?
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