Study: Playing Brain Games Won't Increase IQ

It seems that playing brain games all the time may not actually make you smarter after all. According to a study conducted by researchers hired by the BBC in the United Kingdom, playing computer games designed to train the brain would not help increase a person’s IQ.

The six-week study involved researchers recruiting a total of 11,430 participants that were viewers of the BBC science show "Bang Goes The Theory". Around 8,600 people with ages ranging from 18 to 60 years old were asked to play online games that were designed by the researchers that is aimed to improve memory, reasoning and other skills. The participants played the said at least 10 minutes a day, 3 times a week. There were also more than 2,700 who didn’t play the online brain games but were spending a similar amount of time surfing the Web and answering general knowledge questions

The results showed that those who played the online brain games didn’t fare any better on tests after six weeks compared to those who simply surfed the Web. On some parts of the IQ test, those who mainly surfed the Net even scored higher than those who played the said games.

According to Adrian Owen, assistant director of the Cognition and Brain Sciences unit at Britain’s Medical Research Council and lead author of the study, "If you’re (playing these games) because they’re fun, that’s absolutely fine. But if you’re expecting (these games) to improve your I.Q., our data suggests this isn’t the case."

Still, there were also several people who were opposed to the results, citing a flawed test model. The BBC study was published on the online journal Nature.

Sources: http://www.nature.com/news/2010/100420/full/4641111a.html

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/36670031/ns/health-mental_health/