Select your localized edition:

Close ×

More Ways to Connect

Discover one of our 28 local entrepreneurial communities »

Be the first to know as we launch in new countries and markets around the globe.

Interested in bringing MIT Technology Review to your local market?

MIT Technology ReviewMIT Technology Review - logo


Unsupported browser: Your browser does not meet modern web standards. See how it scores »

{ action.text }

ABC News last week reported a new study which shows that video game players make the best surgeons. To be specific, researchers with Beth Israel and the National Institute on Media and the Family at Iowa State University found that doctors who spent at least three hours a week playing video games made about 37 percent fewer mistakes in laparoscopic surgery and performed the task 27 percent faster than their counterparts who did not play video games.

The idea that video game play improves hand/eye coordination has long been a cliche among defenders of the recreation, but this research gives some substance to those claims.

According to one of the researchers, this study “landmarks the arrival of Generation X into medicine.” They are working to develop a special game which surgeons can do to warm up and hone their skills before entering the operating room.

Another recent study found that men 18-34 devote 6 percent and teenage males devote 15 percent of the time they spend with media each day to playing video games. We knew it was high, but we were surprised to learn that it was this high,” says Robert DeFelice, vice president-client service at Knowledge
Networks/SRI, which conducted the research. Now, all of those moms and dads can sit back and watch it happen, comfortable in the knowledge that their son or daughter may grow up to be a surgeon one day. :-)

Television executives, however, have more to worry about since the increased time spent playing games seems to be coming out of the amount of time this highly desired demographic spends watching network programming and the results have been noticeable through some dramatic drops in Neilsen Ratings this year.

0 comments about this story. Start the discussion »

Reprints and Permissions | Send feedback to the editor

From the Archives


Introducing MIT Technology Review Insider.

Already a Magazine subscriber?

You're automatically an Insider. It's easy to activate or upgrade your account.

Activate Your Account

Become an Insider

It's the new way to subscribe. Get even more of the tech news, research, and discoveries you crave.

Sign Up

Learn More

Find out why MIT Technology Review Insider is for you and explore your options.

Show Me