Video Games: Utilization of a novel strategy to improve perceptual motor skills and cognitive functioning in the noninstitutionalized elderly
Describes the use of videogames to improve manual dexterity, eyehand coordination, reaction time RT, and other perceptual-motor skills among 13 6178 yr old residents of an apartment house for senior citizens. Evaluations of Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale (WAIS), Purdue Pegboard, and rotary pursuit scores were made before and after Ss played an arcade-type videogame. Experimental Ss were given 2 mo of training on the game (2 times/week for 1 hrs). All Ss completed the perceptual-motor tests before and after the 2-mo interval. As hypothesized, all experimental Ss demonstrated significant improvements in videogame scores, rotary pursuit performance, and Purdue Pegboard scores. Significant improvements in WAIS Full Scale, Verbal, and Performance scale scores were also found among the experimental Ss. None of the controls showed any significant improvements on these measures. Experimental Ss also reported improved coordination, better driving habits, and few minor mishaps in the home.