REALITIES OF ESPORTS

ACADEMIC BENEFITS

When adopted properly, esports programs in Middle Schools and High Schools can be so much more than a fun activity. An effective program can heighten enrollment in STEAM areas of study, break gender gaps for STEM instruction, reinforce character development, help young people explore a wealth of new emerging careers across the esports industry and give young people an advantage when applying to colleges.

HOSTILE ENVIRONMENT

Gaming communication “can be hostile” and “misogynistic and hurtful.” Women report being routinely subject to “nasty comments about their abilities, knowledge, appearance and tone of voice.” Schools and colleges adopt codes of conduct, but they can only go so far to address this behavior. If academic esports programs remain male-only or male dominated, it exposes institutions to Title IX complaints.

CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT

Implemented effectively, esports can impact all facets of student learning, from interpersonal communication, intrapersonal communication and overcall cognitive ability. Esports creates a dynamic social experience for players, promotes collaboration and communication, and helps reach young people who may not be personally invested in learning.

INJURIES ARE REAL

Young people are prone to repetitive stress injuries and related medical issues as a result of excessive game play. Eye fatigue (56%), back/neck pain (42%) and wrist/hand injuries (36%) reported among college esports players. No such data exists for K12 school systems. Without taking proactive steps, institutions could be exposed to litigation as a result of those injuries.

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