PlayVS Parent Workshop - Video Game Effects: What do they really do?

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This workshop is for parents who want to learn more about how video games impact players physically, socially, and psychologically.

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Concern about the potential impact of digital games on its players is as old as video games themselves. Once digital games expanded beyond the university labs where they were first developed, the attention they garnered from researchers and the press began to reflect a fear of this emerging media. Despite video games’ 40+ year history, the world of video games is seen as a treacherous place by many. This ‘moral panic’ surrounding video games can create incredible amounts of stress on employees in the industry and lead to confrontation between the press, public, and gaming studios. The aim of this workshop is to provide participants with a better understanding of the influence that digital games can have on players to better combat this panic with scientific rigor. This includes discussions of video games and aggression, violent crime, addiction, learning, social outcomes, and more.

While this is a companion and supplementary workshop to the September 30, 2021 workshop PlayVS Parent Workshop - Games and Your Family: Using Games to Connect, it may also be attended as a standalone workshop.

Speaker Bio: Rachel Kowert, Ph.D is a research psychologist and the Research Director of Take This. She is a world-renowned researcher on the uses and effects of digital games, including their impact on physical, social, and psychological well-being. An award-winning author, she has published a variety of books and scientific articles relating to the psychology of games and, more recently, the relationship between games and mental health specifically. Her published works include peer-reviewed books such as Video Game Debate, Video Game Debate 2, and Video Games and Well-being: Press Start, as well as community-focused books such as A Parent’s Guide to Video Games, and Pragmatic Princess. Recently, she founded the YouTube channel Psychgeist, which serves to bridge the gap between moral panic and scientific knowledge on a variety of psychology and game-related topics. Dr. Kowert has been featured in various media outlets, including NPR, the Wall Street Journal, the Atlantic, Wired, and video game publications such as Kotaku and Polygon

About Take This: Founded in 2012, Take This was the first nonprofit to serve the mental health needs of the video game community. Our mission is to destigmatize mental health challenges and educate the gaming community about maximizing mental wellness. We do this in a variety of programs, including our groundbreaking AFK Room at conventions, our online streaming ambassador program, educational posts, mental health resources, research-based papers, and mental health trainings. Check out more at TakeThis.org!

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