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Type: Thesis
Title: Epidemiological evidence and potential interventions for problematic gaming: A behavioral addiction perspective
Author: Stevens, Matthew William Richard
Issue Date: 2021
School/Discipline: School of Psychology
Abstract: Theoretical debates around the existence of, and the extent to which problematic gaming represents an addiction have been present for a number of years. In the context of those debates, clinical researchers have begun to focus on epidemiological factors and the optimization of prevention and treatment practices for problematic gaming. Much of the theoretical motivation for this research can be distilled down to the need to address the lack of standardization across several areas of problematic gaming research. Under the SBIRT paradigm (a widely implemented public health approach to problematic substance use), individuals are screened for risky behaviors, and depending on the level of risk are either given a brief intervention and/or subsequently referred to treatment. The issue with the problematic gaming research base, as previously noted, the lack of standardized approaches to screening, prevention, and treatment. Questions about the true prevalence of problematic gaming have persisted, due to assessments and screening tools with inadequate symptom coverage and low cut-off scores. Additionally, questions have also been raised about how best to prevent problematic gaming, and whether the available treatment protocols are optimal and effective. Thus, the overall goal if this thesis can be found in addressing this need. Specifically, paper 1 provided an attempt to address a key consequence of inconsistent screening (i.e., unreliable prevalence estimates) and the lack of standardized approaches to prevention (papers 4 and 5) and treatment (papers 2 and 3) were subsequently addressed. In the sections that follow, a key recurring theme is the lack of available standardized protocols for screening, prevention, and treatment. In essence, much of the research conducted presents an attempt to draw attention to this shortcoming, and where possible, highlight solutions to address them. On a related note, initially, the overall research project was grounded in the perspective of clinical psychology, and the focus was primarily on treatment. However, as the project developed, there became increased awareness, both from our findings, and those of other researchers, that preventative approaches were needed. Thus, the project broadened to adopt perspectives from wider public health epistemic communities, rather than remaining within the narrower community of clinical psychology. In essence, the project allowed me to broaden my research skills, and to begin to ground this research into the realities of modern health approaches. The following section sketches the motivational arc for each individual research paper.
Advisor: King, Daniel
Delfabbro, Paul
Dissertation Note: Thesis (Ph.D.) -- University of Adelaide, School of Psychology, 2021
Keywords: Gaming disorder
Hazardous gaming
Internet Gaming Disorder
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
problematic gaming
problem gaming
systematic review
Provenance: This electronic version is made publicly available by the University of Adelaide in accordance with its open access policy for student theses. Copyright in this thesis remains with the author. This thesis may incorporate third party material which has been used by the author pursuant to Fair Dealing exceptions. If you are the owner of any included third party copyright material you wish to be removed from this electronic version, please complete the take down form located at:
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