Cultural Studies of Science Education

, Volume 7, Issue 4, pp 1037–1044 | Cite as

Reality is broken to be rebuilt: how a gamer’s mindset can show science educators new ways of contribution to science and world?

  • Sanaz Farhangi
Book Review


This paper presents a review of Jane McGonigal’s book, “Reality is broken” (Reality is broken: why games make us better and how they can change the world. Penguin Press, New York, 2011). As the book subtitle suggests it is a book about “why games make us better and how they can change the world”, written by a specialist in computer game design. I will try to show the relevance this book might have to science educators through emphasizing the points that the author offers as the fixes to rebuild reality on the image of gaming world. Using cultural-historical activity theory, I will explore how taking up a gamer mindset can challenge one to consider shortcomings in current approaches to the activity of teaching–learning science and how using this mindset can open our minds to think of new ways of engaging in the activity of doing science. I hope this review will encourage educators to explore the worldview presented in the book and use it to transform our thinking about science education.


Games Cultural-historical activity theory Contribution Gamification 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Teaching and Learning, Steinhardt School of Culture, Education and, Human DevelopmentNew York UniversityNew York CityUSA

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