A Study of the Impact of Internet Gaming on Aspects of Quality of Life and Flourishing of Young Undergraduates in India

A Study of the Impact of Internet Gaming on Aspects of Quality of Life and Flourishing of Young Undergraduates in India

Isha Gulati (Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi, India) and Jyotsana Shukla (Amity Institute of Behavioral and Allied Sciences, Amity University, India)
Copyright: © 2021 |Pages: 14
DOI: 10.4018/IJCBPL.2021010104
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Abstract

The present study was conducted to study the impact of internet gaming on the quality of life and flourishing of undergraduates. For this purpose, 80 internet gamers and 80 internet non-gamers lying within the age range of 17-24 years were recruited. For assessing the extent of internet gaming, the Internet Gaming Disorder Scale-Short Form (IGDS9-SF) was utilized while for assessing quality of life and flourishing, the WHO Quality of Life – BREF (WHOQOL-BREF) and Flourishing Scale were used, respectively. The results indicated significant differences in aspects of quality of life between the two groups. Further, the relationship of internet gaming with various aspects of quality of life and flourishing was also explored. The results reveal that internet gaming may indeed influence young undergraduates' quality of life and flourishing.
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Introduction

Internet addiction (IA) and internet gaming disorder (IGD) are “conceptually different behaviours”. Individuals with IA are usually males, invest a significant amount of time online doing any kind of online activities such as social networking, chatting, watching social media including gaming, whereas gaming disorder is specifically associated with gaming online (Griffiths, 2014).

Internet gaming disorder, also known as problematic online gaming or online gaming addiction or internet gaming addiction can be defined as disproportionate as well as uncontrollable usage of online games such that it starts affecting all aspects of a person’s life (Schivinski, et al., 2018). An individual addicted to online gaming spends majority of the time in playing online games while neglecting personal hygiene, school/work and spending quality time with family and friends (Young, 2015). According to DSM-5 (American Psychiatric Association, Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 2013), an individual is said to be having Internet Gaming Disorder if any five out of the following nine features i.e. preoccupation, withdrawal, tolerance, loss of control, giving up other activities, continuation, deception, escape, and negative consequences (risking loss of or actual loss of relationships, job, academic or career advancement opportunities), have been present in the last 12 month period.

It is often believed that the amount of time spent on online gaming is a great criterion for identifying internet gaming addicts (Lemmens & Hendriks, 2016). This idea is based on various studies that indicate that addicted online gamers generally spend approximately 80 hours in a week playing online (Griffiths, 2009) and that addicted gamers devote more than four times as much time engaging in online role-playing games and more than thrice as much time engaging in online shooter games than non-addicted gamers (Lemmens & Hendriks, 2016). However, by using the amount of time spent on online gaming, it is almost impossible to distinguish excessive gamers (those gamers who despite engaging in internet gaming for excessively long hours, sometimes as long as even 14 hours per day, exhibit a few or almost no negative consequences associated with IGD) from addicted gamers (those gamers who engage in online gaming so much so that they fulfil the DSM-5 criteria for diagnosis of IGD (Griffiths, 2010). Griffiths (2010) with the help of two case studies demonstrated that both excessive gaming and addictive gaming although being behaviourally identical in terms of hours of game playing, are quite distinct in terms of the motivation, the significance and the gaming experience that these two classes of gaming carry for the gamers. Currently, the number of hours spent playing online is not considered as a reliable as well as valid criterion for diagnosing online gaming addiction (Griffiths, 2009; Kuss, 2013).

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