Cognitive Benefits of Digital Games for Older Adults
Thursday, June 26 4:30 PM-5:00 PM Location: B1097
Presider: Rob Phillips, Murdoch University, Perth, Australia, Australia
Abstract: Maintaining older adults’ vitality, independence and quality of life well into old age helps both older adults themselves and their societies. There is evidence to suggest that technology can provide people with meaningful and engaging activities that are stimulating, enjoyable and fun. In particular, technology-based games promise many benefits to older adults, but research evidence is sparse about whether and how these can be realized. This paper describes some key results regarding gameplay patterns and cognitive benefits reported from an early survey of 463 Canadian older adults who play digital games. The results demonstrate that numerous older adults are actively playing digital games on a regular basis. The majority of players reported cognitive skill increases, with a greater percentage of intermediate compared to beginner players reporting increases. These results are encouraging and promising for using digital games to enhance older adults’ aging processes.