On SAGE Insight: The Priming Effect of Violent Game Play on Aggression Among Adolescents

From Youth & Society

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With the rapid development of information technology (IT), playing games has become one of the most popular recreations among adolescents, making them relaxed but altering their views of aggression In particular, adolescents possibly resolve conflicts in real-life settings by imitating aggressive behavior from blooding/violent scenario in video games. According to the 2015 report of CINIC), the proportion of young Internet user is as high as 85.3%, and 70% of young criminals have played violent games online. Based on these findings and survey data, playing violent games has already occupied the vast majority of online life of Chinese adolescents. Therefore, it is necessary to detect the link between playing violent games and aggression among adolescents.

As hypothesized in this research, a significant increase in magnitude of aggression effect among adolescents after playing violent games instead of nonviolent games. In the spring semester of 2017, a total of 3,000 Chinese adolescents (50% boys, 50% girls) from Grade 4 to Senior 3 were randomly recruited from Chongqing in southwest area of China. The result of this study indicates that violent game play indirectly affects aggression.

Abstract

There was a dispute over the relationship between playing violent games and follow-up aggression, which was worthy of in-depth analysis. A total of 3,000 (50% girls) adolescentsparticipated in this study, with 1,500 assigned to play violent games and the other 1,500 allocated to play nonviolent games. The data analysis model of five-way ANOVA was employed. The results revealed that the number of adolescents with strengthened aggression levels increased after playing violent games in comparison with nonviolent game players. Specifically, boys with strengthened aggression levels escalated after playing violent games compared with girls; adolescents with highly aggressive traits (HATs) exhibited high levels of aggression compared with adolescents with low aggressive traits (LATs) after playing violent games; adolescents aged 10 to 14 years with strengthened aggression levels escalated after playing violent games compared with those aged 15 to 20 years. The findings indicated that boys, adolescents with HAT and adolescents aged 10 to 14 years were the key group of aggression prevention and intervention after playing violent games.

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Article details

The Priming Effect of Violent Game Play on Aggression Among Adolescents
Qian Zhang , Dorothy L. Espelage, Da-Jun Zhang
First Published April 18, 2018 Research Article
DOI: 10.1177/0044118X18770309
From Youth & Society


     
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