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Title:Examining the role of reasoning and working memory in predicting casual game performance across extended gameplay
Author(s):Kranz, Michael Benjamin
Advisor(s):Kramer, Arthur F
Department / Program:Psychology
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):casual games
working memory
fluid intelligence
skill acquisition
Abstract:The variety and availability of casual video games presents an exciting opportunity for applications such as cognitive training. Casual games have been associated with fluid abilities such as working memory (WM) and reasoning, but the importance of these cognitive constructs in predicting performance may change across extended gameplay and vary with game structure. The current investigation examined the relationship between cognitive abilities and casual game performance over time by analyzing first and final session performance over 4-5 weeks of game play. We focused on two groups of subjects who played different types of casual games previously shown to relate to WM and reasoning when played for a single session: 1) puzzle-based games played adaptively across sessions and 2) speeded switching games played non-adaptively across sessions. Reasoning uniquely predicted first session casual game scores for both groups and accounted for much of the relationship with WM. Furthermore, over time, WM became uniquely important for predicting casual game performance for the adaptive games but not for the non-adaptive games. These results extend the burgeoning literature on cognitive abilities involved in video games by elucidating the differential relationships of fluid abilities across game type and extended play. More broadly, the current study illustrates the usefulness of using multiple cognitive measures in predicting performance and provides potential directions for game-based cognitive training research.
Issue Date:2016-03-17
Rights Information:Copyright 2016 Michael Kranz
Date Available in IDEALS:2016-07-07
Date Deposited:2016-05

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