Should girls play video games?

Niñas jugando videojuegos


If the benefits for them are greater, why not encourage girls to enter the world of video games?

Video games offer a gateway to all girls interested in science

If playing video games is what it’s all about, girls have proven to be just as good as boys, there’s no difference in their ability to do so, and in fact more and more girls and teenagers are doing so. So why not make girls feel more confident about playing video games?

Video games and STEM degrees

The advantages are more than improvements in the social fabric, since according to a study promoted by the University of Surrey, girls aged 13-14 who play video games for entertainment around nine hours a week are much more likely to seek a STEM career, focusing on Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.

Also, it was found that girls’ abilities to perform in these careers are no different from those of boys. According to The Guardian, more than 100 international studies involving over three million girls and boys in equal circumstances, proved that girls in primary school perform better in Mathematics than boys, in secondary school their performance is the same as theirs and only a small but not significant advantage is presented to boys in solving complex problems. Despite this, there are still fewer women than men pursuing STEM careers internationally.

Better represented girls

The little interaction between girls and the STEM world may be due to the lack of appropriate role models for them to facilitate their integration into the world of technology and consequently into the world of work in the future. Video games are often the first step to a coherent and successful representation: from women and teenage girls competing in e-sports, to developers trying to break video game stereotypes towards girls

A curious relationship

Dr. Anesa Hosein, responsible for the study cited above from the University of Surrey, says that those who study STEM careers are most likely also gamers, so we need to encourage today’s girl gamers to be tomorrow’s engineering and physics students and pioneers.

It is the responsibility of parents, teachers and institutions to make girls see that they too have a place in the world of science, and sometimes the easiest way to do this is through a video game.

 

References:

University of Surrey. (2018, October 18). ‘Geek Girl’ gamers are more likely to study science and technology degrees | University of Surrey. [Press release]. Retrieved August 22, 2019, from University of Surrey website: https://www.surrey.ac.uk/news/geek-girl-gamers-are-more-likely-study-science-and-technology-degrees

Gjersoe, N. (2018, March 8). Bridging the gender gap: Why do so few girls study Stem subjects? The Guardian. Retrieved from https://www.theguardian.com/science/head-quarters/2018/mar/08/bridging-the-gender-gap-why-do-so-few-girls-study-stem-subjects

Sun, L. (2018, June 23). New study indicates video games aren’t just for boys anymore: A Foolish Take. Retrieved August 22, 2019, from USA TODAY website: https://www.usatoday.com/story/money/economy/2018/06/23/video-games-arent-just-for-boys-anymore/36143575/