Study – World of Warcraft helps improve cognitive function among the elderly

Thursday, 23rd February 2012 03:15 GMT By Brenna Hillier

A North Carolina State University study has found World of Warcraft can help improve spatial awareness and attention levels in elderly players.

The study checked the cognitive function of two groups of volunteers aged between 60 and 77.

One group was sent off to play around 14 hours of World of Warcraft over two weeks, while the other served as a control.

Although those who’d scored highly on initial tests showed no change, a marked improvement was noted in those who’d struggled with testing.

“Among participants who scored well on baseline cognitive functioning tests, there was no significant improvement after playing WoW – they were already doing great,” assistant professer Anne Collins McLaughlin said.

“But we saw significant improvement in both spatial ability and focus for participants who scored low on the initial baseline tests.”

World of Warcraft was chosen for its “cognitively challenging” gameplay and “socially interactive environment that presents users with novel situations”.

Earlier this week, a report claimed shooters could help in improving the eyesight of those with impaired vision.

Thanks, Gamasutra.



  1. pwren

    Looks like I’m the first to comment about this article … I guess there’s not much concern about the cognitive agility of elderly people. I am a gamer and particularly, a World of Warcraft fan. I also happen to work with seniors and have introduced some to World of Warcraft and I agree with the conclusions of this study!

    If your interested in showing your parents or grandparents how to play World of Warcraft, you may want to get some tips from this website

    This might be the answer to curing dementia!

    #1 3 years ago

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