Exploration of Self-regulation and Impulsiveness Between Problematic Online Gamers and Non-gamers


Self-regulation refers to the basic skills of attention, which is an advanced level process on conscience and effortful inhibitory control (Konstanz, 2009; Liu & Chang, 2018). Previous research studies claimed that self-regulation might be one of the important risk factors for game addiction (Griffiths, 2010; Safarina & Halimah, 2019; Yau et al., 2013). In addition, some research studies also indicated that gamers couldn’t control gaming behavior due to low self-regulation. Zhou et al. (2012) found that problematic gamers demonstrated good executive controlling skills in only responding to the game-related materials (go) but poor inhibiting when game-related materials as the distractors (no-go). However, two critical weaknesses were made, thus, this study aims at examining the difference of self-regulation between problematic gamers and non-gamers by a revised go/no-go switch task.
25 problematic gamers and 25 non-gamers, aged 18-35 were recruited for experimental and control groups respectively. Brief Internet Game Screen (BIGS) was used to identify the problematic gamers and non-gamers; Barratt Impulsiveness Scale and Brief Self-Control Scale were applied to measure impulsiveness and self-regulation. Paradigm was used for stimulus presentation and data collection. The results found that gamers demonstrated higher impulsiveness (p < .001) and higher self-regulation (refers to attention and inhibitory control skills, p < .001) than non-gamers. This study rejects Zhou’s study that gamers are able to demonstrate good executive controlling skills in differentiating stimuli.
This study breaks through the steady concept of the gamers that they probably have lower self-regulation than the non-gamers. Further studies exploring the reasons or mechanisms are needed.

Author Information
Vanessa Hoi Mei Cheung, Caritas Institute of Higher Education, Hong Kong
Wan Sang Kan, City University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong

Paper Information
Conference: ACSS2021
Stream: Technology and Applied Sciences

This paper is part of the ACSS2021 Conference Proceedings (View)
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To cite this article:
Cheung V., & Kan W. (2021) Exploration of Self-regulation and Impulsiveness Between Problematic Online Gamers and Non-gamers ISSN: 2186-2303 – The Asian Conference on the Social Sciences 2021: Official Conference Proceedings https://doi.org/10.22492/issn.2186-2303.2021.1
To link to this article: https://doi.org/10.22492/issn.2186-2303.2021.1

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Posted by James Alexander Gordon