Study: College Students Have Fun

Published July 9, 2003 by OCR Editor

Study: College Students Have Fun

According to a newly released study by Pew Internet & American Life, computer, video, and online games are an essential part of everyday life for college students.

In a survey of 1,162 students on two- and four-year campuses across the nation, most students said the time spent with video games doesn't hurt their schoolwork or their relationships with friends. The study also found that, in keeping with current trends in social gaming technology, games are much more of a social activity than previously suspected. 65 percent of college students reported playing games regularly or occasionally.

Perhaps one reason that gaming is, according to the Pew study, so integrated into college students' lives is that, as a group, college students are extremely digitally connected. In addition, this generation and the video game industry virtually grew up together; therefore the pervasiveness of game playing was no shock to researchers.

A high percentage of respondents to the Pew study - 48 percent - admitted that gaming keeps them from studying "some" or "a lot." The Pew study also found that students take time between classes to play games, or play games as a very brief distraction from studying.

Although 32 percent of student gamers admitted playing games on cell phones, hand-held devices or laptops during class, students reported no consequences on their grades. About two-thirds (66 percent) felt that gaming had no influence on their academic performance, according to the report, yet nearly half (48 percent) agreed that gaming keeps them from studying "some" or "a lot."

The Pew study also smashes a few gender stereotypes about avid gamers, finding that slightly more women (60 percent) than men (40 percent) reported playing computer and online games. About the same number of men and women play video games.

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