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A Parent's Guide to Video Games: The essential guide to understanding how video games impact your child's physical, social, and psychological well-being Paperback – November 30, 2016
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"As a therapist and parent, I was delighted to read Dr. Kowert's latest book on a subject that concerns nearly all parents: video games. This book is lucid and concise, and provides usable, realistic advice based on the latest research. Kowert directly addresses all of the common stereotypes, misinformation, and general concerns on the subject, and provides an approachable summary of the research. I believe readers will feel relieved and empowered by the information contained in this book. I know I will be keeping it on hand for my clients and parent friends." -Kjersti Nelson, Marriage and Family Therapist
"Dr. Rachel Kowert is an internationally respected expert on video games and youth. Her book fills a gap for parents made anxious by hyperbole and conflicting information about the pros and cons of games. This authoritative source will help parents feel more comfortable making media choices for their children." -Dr. Cheryl K. Olson, Co-founder of the Center for Mental Health and Media
"Many parents worry that if they buy their child the latest video game, that this may cause the youth harm. Parents have to sift through considerable alarmism, fear-mongering and deceptive reporting of research to get through the truth. Finally, with Rachel Kowert's book. A Parent's Guide to Video Games, parents have it all lain out in front of them. Dr. Kowert covers up-to-date research in language easily digestible by non-scientists. Sometimes what games do or do not do defies simply "yes/no" answers, but Dr. Kowert provides the information parents need to make informed and individual decisions that will be right for their families. I highly recommend it for all parents." -Dr. Christopher Ferguson, Professor of Psychology at Stetson University
"This is a concise, wonderfully helpful resource for parents who are nervous -- or just curious -- about psychological research on the effects of video games, and who might otherwise fall down a rabbit-hole of misinformation and scaremongering on a frequently misunderstood subject." -Jesse Singal, Writer-at-large, New York Magazine
About the Author
Dr. Rachel Kowert is a research psychologist from Austin, Texas, with a PhD in psychology from the University of York (UK) and an MA in counseling psychology from Santa Clara University. Dr. Kowert has dedicated her career to studying video games and the gamers who love them. As a researcher, psychologist, gamer, and parent, she strives to educate other parents about the potential dangers and unique contributions that video games can bring to our everyday lives.
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Dr. Kowert writes with a great flow that allows the reader to come away with lots of information that isn't forgettable. She is reassuring and gently encourages appropriate aged gaming and family gaming. Put your reservations to rest and enjoy this smart guide.
A Parent's Guide to Video Games FTW!!
Coming in at around 100 pages, Dr. Kowert presents an easy to read guide for parents showing in short detail multiple topics such as the ones stated above. It also cites findings that video games could be linked to improving cognitive and mechanical abilities. Colorfully annotated throughout; Dr. Kowert also provides charts, graphics and other data to back up her findings.
The book takes about an hour, as it's a very easy read. I feel as though this will become the go to resource for parents who are worried about their children's screen time or video games in general. One of my favorite sections that Dr. Kowert provided is towards the end called "Additional Reading". This chapter provides even more resources for parents to explore and research further into the basic concepts and data presented in her book.
If you are a parent, and you play video games or know a child that plays video games, you owe it to yourself to check out A Parent's Guide to Video Games. It's chock full of valuable information to assist you in making the best choices for you and your family. Highly Recommended.
I would also like to point out I really like the design and layout of the book. It's very well done and really catches your attention. That being said, the book is broken down into 7 chapters, each addressing specific areas of gaming, it's impact on children, and research that has been done in those areas (as well as references of the points being made).
At the end of each chapter, Dr. Kowert presents a "Take Home Message", which is a nice summation of the chapter, as well as Advice for Parents afterward. I thought this was a nice touch as you could always go back to the book and look over those portions instead of having to reread the entire chapter.
Dr. Kowert also presents other books and media that parents can utilize if they are interested in learning more about this subject matter. Each portion of the book is presented in an easy to understand manner and overall this book is a simple and effective reader, even for a casual reader. You could easily finish this book within a day, or a week.
I truly appreciate Dr. Kowert, and other researcher's efforts into this area of study as I have always disliked the media's portrayal of video games, especially regarding their alleged effects on making children violent and aggressive. I ultimately believe that the way your children turn out is almost entirely on the parents and their involvement in their children's lives. This is coming from someone who has played every genre of video game, from the most casual to the more violent ones.