MUL325 Psychology of Video Games

Course Description

An overview of the psychological aspects of game playing, with particular emphasis on video gaming. The course presents the historical foundations of research into human play activity, as well as current research into video gaming and its impact on individuals and society. Students learn about the interaction between people and video games in terms of individual sensory response, personality, and social behavior. Covers human-computer interaction issues specific to video gaming, such as cognitive processing, reaction time, idiosyncratic navigation, and non-traditional interface design. Topics include motivation, addiction, fantasy escapism, conflict, aggression, reward, player prestige, and alienation.

Learning Outcomes

  • Describe theories of human play activity.
  • Identify the psychological aspects of video games within the categories of sensory response, personality, and social behavior.
  • Describe strategies used in video games to maintain interest and further play activity.
  • Speculate on future trends in video gaming.
  • Describe both positive and negative effects of video games on individuals and society at large.