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LETTERS

Joystick jockies

June 13, 2004

I found your article by Mary McNamara on video game effects very interesting and am glad that the L.A. Times takes an interest in the potential constructive outcomes of game play ("A PhD in Mortal Kombat," June 6).

While much of the past research has been about violent content, as indicated in your article, there have also been promising lines of research in the cognitive area. Dr. Patricia Greenfield, a UCLA researcher, conducted seminal research in this area that was published in a special issue of the Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology a decade ago. Among other findings, she documented that playing video games cultivates visual spatial skills.

Sandra L. Calvert

Washington, D.C.

Sandra L. Calvert is a psychology professor and the director of the Children's Digital Media Center at Georgetown University.

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