Discussion considers score of video games, gaming cultural spaces for society

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — For society, video games may produce both wins and losses, according to a Penn State researcher, who will speak at this month's Science on Tap.

Gabriela Richard, an assistant professor of learning, design, and technology, will be leading a public discussion on the positive learning benefits, as well as the adverse effects of video games and gaming cultural spaces at 7 p.m. on March 20 at Liberty Craft House in downtown State College.

Richard said that live-streaming gaming events on Twitch, or e-sport competitions can offer benefits to individual and collaborative learning. On the other side of the coin, Richard said, “Limited in-game cultural representations and perceptions of gaming in the wider culture have helped perpetuate gender and racial stereotypes.”

The event is part of the monthly Science on Tap series, which is designed to allow informal discussions between leading Penn State researchers and members of the general public. 

Science on Tap is presented by the Science Policy Society. The society is a graduate student-run organization that aims to teach researchers about the connection between their research and public policy, with a dedicated focus on science advocacy.

Yasina Somani, a doctoral student in kinesiology and science on Tap organizer, said the group is hoping that the State College community joins in on the discussion and learns together.

“In this era of technology, video games and immersive gaming experiences are becoming more commonly used among younger and older people. Understanding the benefits and drawbacks of these unique cultural spaces is important,” said Somani. “Science on Tap offers a great forum to discuss the influence of these spaces and learn from experts in the field.”

For more information, visit the society’s website at: Attendees are reminded that they must be 21 years of age, or older, to attend.

Last Updated March 21, 2018