The Instigator
Pro (for)
0 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
7 Points

Are video games making kids dumber Yes(pro) or No(con)

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/4/2014 Category: Education
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 3,309 times Debate No: 48361
Debate Rounds (3)
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Votes (2)




Video games are made to be addictive so kids are hooked in it. During this time children could be reading or being active outside. Clash of clans(a top rated app) Has been out over a year and has been estimated making a half a million dollars a day. This may seem a little stretched but still these games are designed to make you waste money and spend more time. They give special "deals" that just make you spend 2 hours of time when you could be finishing a homework, a good book, or playing with your friends outside. What does Clash of clans teach you nothing not one bit of helpful thing that would make you succeed in life. After a child goes home from school with new info from their head they go strait to the television or their gaming system. This makes them loose their knowledge and making them loosing the info and making it harder in school.


I accept the debate. I will be arguing that there are numerous educational benefits within video games, as well as other cognitive and social benefits that will, overall, disprove the notion that video games make kids "dumber". I will then refute my opponent's arguments.

To begin with, video games offer numerous educational benefits. A study conducted by the Educational Development Center (EDC) and the Ready To Learn Initiative (RTL) found that a curriculum that included video games lead to an improvement in early literacy skills(1). To quote directly, "the study focused on young children, and 4- and 5-year-olds who participated showed increases in letter recognition, sounds association with letters, and understanding basic concepts about stories and print."

This trend is also modeled in older students as well. College aged students in the Loyalist College in Ontario, after participating in a 3D virtual simulation of a US/Canada border crossing, where the students played the role of the guards, saw an increase of successful test scores from 56% to 95%(1).

Ever going to need laparoscopic surgery? Better hope your surgeon is a gamer. To quote directly from the article: "A study published in the February edition of Archives of Surgery says that surgeons who regularly play video games are generally more skilled at performing laparoscopic surgery."(1).

Educational benefits aren't the only thing you gain from playing video games. A study done by the American Psychological Association (APA), shows that "playing shooter video games improved a player’s capacity to think about objects in three dimensions, just as well as academic courses to enhance these same skills, according to the study."(2). Also, to continue quoting from the same study, "The more adolescents reported playing strategic video games, such as role-playing games, the more they improved in problem solving and school grades the following year, according to a long-term study published in 2013. Children’s creativity was also enhanced by playing any kind of video game, including violent games"(2).

To move on to my opponent's arguments, my opponent seems to be falling into the "they're not doing anything productive" mindset. To start with, refer back to my arguments about the numerous different educational and cognitive benefits that video gaming provides, meaning that playing video games can be really productive and beneficial. But secondly, since my opponent brought up the game "Clash of Clans" which is an online multiplayer game that you can play on your smart phone, these types of games also have various different social benefits that aid kids and adults in various aspects of life. "Multiplayer games become virtual social communities, where decisions need to be made quickly about whom to trust or reject and how to lead a group, the authors said. People who play video games, even if they are violent, that encourage cooperation are more likely to be helpful to others while gaming than those who play the same games competitively, a 2011 study found."(2).

According to Ian Bogost, associate professor at the Georgia Institute of Technology and founder of software maker Persuasive Games. “Look at ‘World of Warcraft’: You’ve got 11-year-olds who are learning to delegate responsibility, promote teamwork and steer groups of people toward a common goal.”(1). These are hardly qualities of "dumb" people.

Overall, video games offer many different benefits to gamers, some of which you can't find in books or the classroom. But the claim that video games make kids "dumber" is blatantly false.


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(2) -;
Debate Round No. 1


Thank you for accepting the debate. First this is talking about kids 1-16.

These test have been done before. Boys from ages 6-9 where participating in an event. (check first link) They never had games before and guess what they got dumber. How, before they played games in there free time did team work activities, sports and learned. During this time they played the games more and lost information in there head. What helps get you smart; when you practice the more you do it the stronger it is locked in your mind, but when you don't do it anymore you start to lose it.

(second link) Now you say that there are games that expose children to learning at an early age. The sad truth is that children won't really play them unless they are forced. People make fun of you for having them, so children will try to avoid them and get fun non learning ones.

(not any link) Clash of clans is a multiplayer game that you can chat to people. I have owned this game for a year (really yes look up clan Phenom HQ and name cannonman to see my base). What did I learned I learned nothing about teamwork. There are many versions of this and really its sad. Sure people can give you tips. So can your friends or you can look up Chief pat on youtube if you want.

Yes there are simulations that help you like surgery. Them have it at Walt Disney world also, It freaked me out. This might not be true for others but what are the chances of a child picking up these educational games. Not very to to little popularity, teasing,and other reasons



Yaaaay source battles! /endsarcasm

I'll be going through this line by line, so anything my opponent says will be in bold.

"First this is talking about kids 1-16."

First of all, this is one-hundred percent shifting the goalposts. No where anywhere else in this debate did he restrict the topic of conversation to people between the ages of 1 and 16. That's entirely unfair for me to prepare arguments to cover a vast array of ages just for him to cut out half of my ground out of nowhere.

But second of all, this is such an arbitrary definition of what a "kid" is that there's absolutely no way to support it. Don't abide by this at all.

"Boys from ages 6-9 where participating in an event. (check first link) They never had games before and guess what they got dumber."

This is where all the fun parts of the debate come into play. /endsarcasm

At the end of the day I have sources saying that kids learn better with video games. He has a source saying that kids don't learn better with video games. So it just comes down to whose sources you believe more.

First of all, you're going to prefer my sources because I have information coming from a renowned psycologial association and a noteworthy news organization as opposed to just one person. You prefer it for this reason because a) I'm getting this information from more than one credible place, meaning that multiple people have come to this conclusion, and b) my studies come from peer-reviewed organizations, meaning that it's other people's jobs to look over my information to make sure that it isn't biased or flawwed in various ways, rather than his source which is just the findings of one random guy.

Second of all, you're going to prefer my sources because my sources cover a broader scope in terms of a time frame, while his source just focuses on short-term effects, not what it does to the kids overall. To quote directly from the first paragraph in his source, "according to a study that examined the short-term effects of video-game ownership on academic development in young boys."

He just has sources that cover a four month period of time in the early life of a kid. My sources span from toddlerhood to college level students. So you're preferring my sources on the basis of I'm covering a much larger scope of information than my opponent, as well as a much larger time frame.

But even if you don't buy my sources specifically, at worst this makes them even out and cancel each other out. That means you have to look to my other arguments that weren't addressed at all, such as the arguments that video games increase kid's creativity, ability to visualize objects in three dimensions just as well as academic courses, an improved problem solving capability and ability to cooperate with others. These all impact the debate to make kids "smarter" and most certainly not "dumb". My opponent never responded to any of these claims, hold it against him.

"The sad truth is that children won't really play them unless they are forced."

First of all, even though I'm not one for usually reading sources and I certainly don't blame you if you don't either, I agree with my opponent that you need to read his second source. Why? Because it doesn't say a single word of what he's claiming it does. There's absolutely nothing in the article that says that kids are going to be peer-pressured into not playing games that have clear educational motives.

But second of all, even if it is there, my impacts still stand because even the non-educational ones offer added benefits that help in education. These were the claims that, ironically, my opponent dropped. So go back to the argument I brought up from the APA that says that playing shooter video games improved player's capacity to think about objects in three dimensions, as wella s the argument that children's creativity was enhanced by playing any kind of video game, including violent video games. So even if his argument here is true, I'm still giving kids educational benefits through video games that kids will want to play. His argument here just doesn't matter.

"What did I learned I learned nothing about teamwork."

First, you're still preferring the numerous studies done on this that cite the improved teamplay and coorperation with others over my opponent's personal testemony, which is a) potentially biased, and b) absolutely unverifiable.

But even if you do want to give it consideration, I'm also a player of games such as League of Legends, Guild Wars 2, Warcraft 3, World of Warcraft, and Starcraft 2, all of which are online, multiplayer games. I've learned more about how to work together with others and get people to follow one common goal through these games than I ever have through school or academics. This means that a) you prefer my testemony because I have experienced a wider range of games than my opponent has, making my testemony more probably true than my opponent's, or b) just ignore personal testemonies altogether and look to the actual studies that I have that back up my testemony.

At the end of the day, the debate breaks down really simply:

1. My opponent drops numerous arguments I made from the APA. As the last round is approaching, don't let him respond to them because he had his chance and didn't. To let him do it in the final round where I have a limit time to address them and to create clash is really unfair.

2. My sources cover a broader scope and time frame than my opponents, as well as come from more reputable places, which means you're going to be preferring my sources compared to my opponent's.

3. Just ignore the personal testemony stuff. But if you won't and you want to evaluate that stuff, you prefer my personal testemony since I've played a wider range of games and therefore am more knowledgable about it's benefits than my opponent, which makes my testamony more probably true.
Debate Round No. 2


CANNON0Man forfeited this round.


Another concession? Sad.
Debate Round No. 3
No comments have been posted on this debate.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by Romanii 3 years ago
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Total points awarded:06 
Reasons for voting decision: Con pretty much dominated Pro in this debate. He completely dismantled Pro's arguments. He also used better sources, as shown by his in depth analysis of them. And Pro forfeited, giving conduct to Con as well.
Vote Placed by Krazzy_Player 3 years ago
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Total points awarded:01 
Reasons for voting decision: FF