A recent commentary by Annie Murphy Paul of the MindShift KQED Blog notes that the virtual three-dimension objects and manipulatives often found in video games help provide the female gender with the spacial awareness needed to succeed in STEM subjects.
In Paul's article, she notes males have historically held an advantage over females in spacial ability, a feature a recent study by Psychological Science indicated was a strong predictor of mathematical achievement. The author feels this disparity can be attributed to genetic differences, but also differences in developmental "leisure-time activities" between the two sexes.
As the commentary notes, according to a study by the University of Toronto, students playing with three-dimensional manipulatives and digital settings within video games and/or game-based learning content can "virtually eliminate" the gender difference found when measureing spacial awareness. That's pretty cool if you ask us!
To read more about the studies and Annie Murphy Paul's commentary, check out the blog post linked below: