This research examines the impact of playing extensive video games on young adults with varying levels of autistic traits. The aim is to gain insights into both the positive and negative consequences of their gaming habits.
Section 1: Project Rationale
Section 2: Project Details
In this section, you are asked to explain your topic choice.
Fill in the four boxes below, which will expand as you type.
State your name and student banner ID number:
State the proposed title of your project:
|An explorative investigation into the experienced benefits and negative consequences of excessive video game playing about the level of autistic spectrum traits in a sample of young adults|
Provide a literature review outlining the rationale for your study
According to Engelhardt, Mazurek and Hilgard (2017), young adults with ASD traits have more symptoms of video game pathology than normal adults. The relationship between Autistic Spectrum traits and video game playing is strong, i.e. adults spend their free time playing video games and spend more hours playing them. Similarly, as per the study of Mazurek and Engelhardt (2013), young boys with ASD and ADHD traits spend more time playing video games than normal boys. Moreover, they have in-room video game availability and their symptoms are frequently associated with problematic video games. Mazurek, Engelhardt and Clark (2015) believe that young individuals with ASD are strongly interested in playing video games, and an increasing interest has been recorded. The negative and positive effects of video games have been reported in this particular group of people. In addition, the features of video game design also negatively and positively impact the enjoyment of adults with ASD. The most frequently played video games are Action-Adventure (19%) and Role-Playing (31%) in young adults with ASD traits. However, Strahan and Elder (2015) state that video games increase obesity in young adults with ASD disorders and obesity has increased three times in adults with ASD over the past ten years.
According to Mazurek et al. (2012), 41.4% of young adults and children with ASD play video games, which can result in behavioural and health problems such as lack of exercise, sleep deprivation and irritability. However, as per Mazurek, Engelhardt and Clark (2015), video games can positively impact young adults with ASD as video games with an online component can be assistive in widening social interactions for adolescents with ASD. Moreover, playing video games can deliver opportunities for motivation and enhancing skills such as organisation, planning, reinforcement, and self-monitoring of particular behaviour without requiring direct human-to-human interaction (Mazurek, Engelhardt and Clark, 2015).
The Rationale of the Study
The study focuses on comprehending the benefits and harm of excessive gaming on young adults with ASD traits. As per Xu, Chen and Adelman's (2015) contribution, video games have certain benefits and harms that can positively or negatively impact an individual. Naser and Al-Bayed (2016) state that video games can often be addictive, and individuals spend hours playing them. Furthermore, video games influence the physical health of an individual. However, Gray (2015) indicates that video games help individuals develop cognitive, social, emotional, and motivational skills. As per Engelhardt, Mazurek and Hilgard (2017), the impact of gaming can be different for individuals with ASD traits as their mind is different from a regular individual's. The harmful level of engagement, physical health, and different skills of a gamer with ASD traits can be different to a degree compared to an individual without such traits. The study will try to determine the extent to which the differences occur and their dangers for individuals with ASD traits.
This dissertation project proposal addresses a significant gap in the existing literature concerning the association between video game engagement and behavioural challenges in adults exhibiting Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) traits. While limited research has explored this connection (Mazurek and Engelhardt, 2013), there is a distinct dearth of studies examining the specific video game genre preferences and their potential link to behavioural issues in this population. Additionally, there is a notable research gap in investigating the potential benefits or drawbacks of excessive video game consumption in young adults who exhibit ASD traits, especially considering the findings of Strahan and Elder (2015). This study aims to bridge this critical knowledge gap in the literature. Furthermore, it is imperative to explore viable solutions for promoting physical activity among young adults displaying ASD traits.
Aims and Objectives
To study the benefits and harm of excessive video game playing.
They identify the factors pertinent to excessive video game playing in young adults with ASD traits.
To assess the benefits and harm of excessive video game playing in young adults (18 to 25) with higher levels of ASD traits.
To provide recommendations on how excessive video game playing in young adults with ASD traits can be reduced.
What are the benefits and harms of excessive video game playing?
What factors are pertinent to excessive video game playing in young adults with ASD traits?
What are the benefits and harms of excessive video game playing in young adults (18 to 25) with ASD traits?
What are the recommendations as to how excessive video game playing in young adults with ASD traits can be reduced?
Proposed Research Method
The current study investigates the benefits and negative consequences of excessive video game playing and the level of autistic spectrum traits in a sample of young adults. The study will, therefore, utilise multivariate inferential statistics to process the gathered responses collected from the online surveys by running a quantitative regression analysis.
Significance of the Study
Excessive video gaming can directly affect the social abilities and mental health of people with ASD. Lobel et al. (2017) have highlighted that gaming can cause problem behaviours in ASD, from inattentiveness to a lack of basic social skills. This study will benefit people who have been diagnosed with ASD, as it will help them understand the core of their gaming issue and its probable negative effects. On the other hand, Page et al. (2017) have elaborated that gaming is also related to increasing motor skills and development. In this particular study, the advantages of gaming will be compared to the disadvantages. This will be helpful for medical professionals in counselling and social and cognitive psychology. The findings of this study will be applicable for practice when dealing with patients with ASD who are addicted to gaming. Moreover, Engelhardt et al. (2015) highlighted that aggressive traits are common for ASD gaming addicts, therefore affecting their families. The comparative analysis of gaming behaviours in young adults and its probable impact will increase the knowledge of loved ones and improve their understanding.
Summarize how this project relates to your field of interest; for example, social psychology, cognitive psychology, forensic psychology or counselling psychology.
Field of Interest
A study conducted on patients with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) found that children benefitted physically from playing video games (Mazurek, Engelhardt and Clark, 2015). However, the study has stated that excessive video games can affect social behaviours and interactions among these children. Social psychology deals with human interaction; therefore, this topic relates to social psychology, as it will assess and compare the pros and cons of video gaming. Similarly, Chung, Vanderbilt and Soares (2015) noted that people addicted to excessive gaming and ASD developed much faster verbal abilities and cognitive skills. This entails that gaming can positively or negatively affect the brain's cognitive functioning, hence relatable to cognitive psychology. Furthermore, counselling psychology is supposed to facilitate an individual's emotional, social, educational, and functioning (Murdoch, Gregory and Eggleton, 2015). It is also applicable to this field of study because people with ASD can be counselled to improve their personal and interpersonal abilities in terms of gaming addiction.
How the project will be conducted:
|How will you operationalise your research question to form your main hypothesis or hypotheses?|
H1: Excessive gaming benefits people with ASD traits more than it harms
H2: Excessive gaming harms people with ASD traits more than it benefits
The research questions of the current study focus on assessing the harms and benefits of gaming, specifically on people with varying ASD traits within the age limit of 18 to 25. For this purpose, the study will test the aforementioned hypothesis using regression analysis.
|How will you operationalise the key concepts/variables referred to in the hypothesis or hypotheses (i.e. how will these concepts/variables be measured (using an existing scale, developed scale, etc.))?|
Measurement Scale for Key Concepts and Variables
The measurement scale opted for measuring ASD traits in people in this particular study is the ASD Spectrum Quotient (ASQ). ASQ test is based on 50 questions about intelligence, emotions, social skills, etc., with answers that range from highly agree to disagree (Westwood et al., 2016). It is not used as a diagnostic tool, but it is applicable in the current study for measuring the level of ASD traits in different people.
|Why do you feel your chosen method (survey) is the most appropriate for your project?||Since the survey method allows for a considerably greater number of respondents in the sampling, using the survey research method for this study would be justified.|
|What design issues may be pertinent to your potential study (e.g. measurement scale, question-wording)?|
Design Issues and Limitations
The research design may have certain issues to the extent of whether respondents understand the questions and to the extent relevant individuals, people who have spent lives with gamers with ASD traits, responded to the survey. The researcher requires responses from people with family members who are gamers with ASD traits. Finding the appropriate people may be a problem when considering surveys, as a lot of time could be spent finding the appropriate individuals who can add value to the research. To conduct an appropriate analysis, a large sample of young is required. However, due to the current pandemic, only online means are undertaken for contacting the respondents, which will be challenging to access the desired respondents with ADS traits.
|Outline your participant recruitment plan. Describe your potential participants (number, demographic information). Describe how you plan to recruit them (e.g. work colleagues, friends, neighbours, other students.|
Participant Recruiting Plan
An appropriate participant-recruiting plan has been developed considering the survey design and design issue. The researcher will share questionnaires with appropriate individuals where they exist in numbers. The researcher will use the social media platform and electronic mailing to reach the relevant respondents. The researcher will visit different Facebook pages to search for an individual who has family members with ASD traits. The researcher will then share the questionnaires with them in the hope they will respond to them. The researcher will further email different doctors and nurses who have worked with ASD individuals to get a proper insight into the reality of the issue.
|Outline your proposed procedure. Please include a copy of your draft survey with this assignment or the references for existing surveys.||The project is an explorative investigation of information about the benefits and harms of Excessive video game playing in young adults from 18-25 with ASD traits. The examination is made up of two sections, with each containing significant data about the research topic. In section 1 of the project rationale, a variety of literature is discussed that is relevant to the addressed research topic, alongside the aim and questions leading the examination. In this part, the basis for directing the examination is given just as the harms and the benefits discussed in past research are discussed, as well as the significance of understanding them and the field of interest. It comprises a technique that discusses research reasoning that sets the way for the whole research process. This section highlights the method by which the research questions and variables will be conceptualized, the limitations, the rationale and the method by which the data will be collected and analyzed. This section also discusses the issues with the study design and the study limitations.|
|How will you administer the questionnaire (e.g. online, face-to-face, hard copy)?||The questionnaire will be administered using email or a defined social media platform. The researcher will approach the different gaming groups on this platform, including people of all genders and age groups. The group members will then be approached and share the research purpose and scope, and the willing members will be selected based on their medical history and age group.|
|What type of data will your study produce, and how will these data relate to your research question? Discuss your data analysis plan.||The data accumulated for the investigation and the method through which it is assembled determines the researcher's analysis of the gathered information (Heng et al., 2018). The data, when gathered utilising the primary methodology with a quantitative nature, is separated using genuine statistical analysis tools such as SPSS and Excel and the data, which is qualitative, is examined using thematic investigation (Johnston, 2017). According to Bain (2017), statistical analysis interprets the data from the provided sample using indexes, for example, mean, standard deviation and correlational statistics. The researcher will use this to interpret the collected quantitative data, as it can have random variations in it.|
|Outline your proposed research timetable, indicating approximate dates and duration of the stages of your project.|
Staff Member Signature
Bain, L., 2017. Statistical analysis of reliability and life-testing models: theory and methods. Routledge.
Engelhardt, C.R., Mazurek, M.O. and Hilgard, J., 2017. Pathological game use in adults with and without Autism Spectrum Disorder. PeerJ, 5, p.e3393.
Heng, Y.T., Wagner, D.T., Barnes, C.M. and Guarana, C.L., 2018. Archival research: Expanding the methodological toolkit in social psychology. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 78, pp.14-22.
Johnston, M.P., 2017. Secondary data analysis: A method by which the time has come. Qualitative and quantitative methods in libraries, 3(3), pp.619-626.
Mazurek, M.O. and Engelhardt, C.R., 2013. Video game use in boys with autism spectrum disorder, ADHD, or typical development. Paediatrics, 132(2), pp.260-266.
Mazurek, M.O., Engelhardt, C.R. and Clark, K.E., 2015. Video games from the perspective of adults with an autism spectrum disorder. Computers in Human Behavior, 51, pp.122-130.
Mazurek, M.O., Shattuck, P.T., Wagner, M. and Cooper, B.P., 2012. Prevalence and correlates of screen-based media use among youths with autism spectrum disorders. Journal of autism and developmental disorders, 42(8), pp.1757-1767.
Strahan, B.E. and Elder, J.H., 2015. Video game playing affects obesity in adolescents with autism spectrum disorder: a case study. Autism research and treatment, 2015.