Girls who play video games behave better

February 1st, 2011 - 3:56 pm ICT by IANS  

Washington, Feb 1 (IANS) Girls who play video games behave better, feel more connected to families and have stronger mental health. Researchers from Brigham Young University focused on girls aged between 11 and 16 years who played video games with a parent.

“The surprising part about this for me is that girls don’t play video games as much as boys,” said Professor Sarah Coyne of Brigham Young University who led the study.

“But they did spend about the same amount of time co-playing with a parent as boys did,” he added, reports the Journal of Adolescent Health.

The study involved 287 families with an adolescent child.

Mario Kart, Mario Brothers, Wii Sports, Rock Band and Guitar Hero topped the list of games played most often by girls. Call of Duty, Wii Sports and Halo ranked 1, 2 and 3 among boys.

For boys, playing with a parent was not a statistically significant factor for any of the outcomes the researchers measured (positive behaviour, aggression, family connection, mental health), according to a Brigham Young statement.

Coyne and co-author Laura Padilla-Walker offer two possible explanations for what’s behind the gender differences.

“We’re guessing it’s a daddy-daughter thing, because not a lot of moms said yes when we asked them if they played video games,” Padilla-Walker said.

“Co-playing is probably an indicator of larger levels of involvement.”

It’s also possible that the time boys play with parents doesn’t stand out as much because they spend far more time playing with friends.

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