Toronto Metropolitan University
Middleton_Jason_A.pdf (722.97 kB)

Exposure to violent and prosocial video games: effects on hostile attribution bias, aggression, aggressive driving tendencies, and empathy

Download (722.97 kB)
posted on 2021-05-23, 11:58 authored by Jason A. Middleton
The present study aimed to investigate the possible relation between reported video game play (i.e., violent, aggressive driving, and prosocial types) and four outcomes of social behaviour: hostile attribution bias, aggression, aggressive driving tendencies, and empathy. A sample of 136 university students (67 males and 69 females), age 17 to 58 (M = 20.66), completed various self-report measures. Data were analyzed both in terms of the whole sample and separately according to participant sex. The results provide partial evidence that there are links between violent games and aggressive attitudes (i.e., physical, but not relational, aggression); aggressive driving games and aggressive driving tendencies/punitive attitudes toward a convicted driver; violent games and hostile attribution bias; and violent games and lower empathy ratings. No support was found for the link between prosocial games and higher empathy. Future research directions for research on video games effects are outlined.





  • Master of Arts


  • Psychology

Granting Institution

Ryerson University

LAC Thesis Type

  • Thesis

Thesis Advisor

Stephen Want