National Science Challenge
National Science Challenge

Chair     : Associate Professor Dr Mohd Hafiz Dzarfan Othman

Co-chair: Dr Mohd Firdaus Abdul Wahab



In order to develop our nation, we require more excellent talents, especially in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). However, the Science Outlook Report published by the Academy of Sciences Malaysia shows a decrease in the number of students specializing in science related fields. Undoubtedly, if this trend continues, we will not be able to produce the much-needed future researchers, scientists and engineers to drive our nation’s competitiveness. The crucial point now is to provide quality science education, as well as creative and innovative teaching and learning approaches to science related subjects.

This NSC program has helped in building strong foundation for a successful students’ future and paves significant shift from the conventional way of learning. NSC activities were designed with exciting challenges that required the participants to use generic skills, such as adopting innovative thinking skills, in solving various scientific challenges. Students were challenged to carry out STEM and innovation activities through eight different modules related to the inventions and technologies that could support and create a smart community environment. NSC also involved in training the students to explore the philosophical and ethical dimensions of specific topics. As such, the modules were also developed to increase students’ knowledge and interest in STEM fields through interactive exploratory learning via seminars, courses and visits.


The Challenge is conducted in English language, and consists of the following levels:

  • Preliminary level
  • State level
  • Semi-final level
  • Grand final level

For the year 2018, the National Science Challenge is organised in collaboration with ExxonMobil Subsidiaries in Malaysia, the Ministry of Energy, Science, Technology, Environment and Climate Change (MESTECC), the Ministry of Education Malaysia (MOE), the Young Scientists Network (YSN-ASM), the Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST) and the U.S. Embassy in Kuala Lumpur.


Activities overview

1. Preliminary level 25 May – 1 June 2018 Schools around Malaysia ASM and YSN Members
2. State level 2-23 July 2018 Universities/ Schools in every state ASM and YSN Members
3. Semi Final Level 9-15 August 2018 UTM UTM
4. Grand Final level 13 Sept 2018 UM UM


Preliminary Level

The preliminary level was conducted as an online test comprising of 40 MCQ questions and five fill-in-the-blank questions. The participants were given one hour to complete the questions online under the supervision of the mentor teacher (e-exam format). The Challenge comprised questions ranging from various fields such as Physics, Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics and Science & Technology, and may not be based on the Form Four curriculum.

State Level

Four best teams from the preliminary level and one wild card team (combination of three best participants) were selected to compete at the State Level. The teams that competed in the state level were shown below.

The State Level was conducted in the form of a science quiz and presentation comprising the following categories:

  • Individual
  • Team
  • Open
  • Pitching Session

Semi Final Level

16 teams were selected from the State Level to represent their respective states at the Semi Final Level. This level was conducted in Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, Johor Bahru as a 7-day residential science camp carrying the theme Smart Community. Teams were challenged to carry out STEM-related activities through the following eight modules:

  1. Module Engineering 1
    • Water Pump Assembly Challenge
  2. Module Engineering 2
    • Energy Game For Sustainable Future
  3. Module Engineering 3
    • Clean Water Challenge
  4. Module Physics
    • Stirling Engine Power Race
  5. Module Chemistry
    • Blackout!!! Chemist Kan Ada…
  6. Module Biology
    • Microbes: Beauty and the Beast
  7. Module IT & Mathematics
    • Computational Thinking for Smart Environment
  8. Module Innovation
    • Invent It!

Following is the list of semi-finalists of NSC2018 and some photos during the semi-final level.


Grand Final Level

The top four teams selected from the Semi Final was competed at Grand Final Level in Universiti Malaya on 13 September 2018 to win the Prime Minister’s Challenge trophy. The Grand Final was conducted in a form of science quiz and presentation, comprising the following categories:

  • Individual category
  • Team category
  • Open category
  • Innovation Pitching session

Four teams that competed in the Grand Final Level are as follows:

  • SMK King George V
  • Kolej Yayasan Saad
  • MRSM Tun Abdul Razak
  • Wild Card Team Kedah


This event was graced by YB Puan Isnaraissah Munirah Majilis, Deputy Minister of Energy, Technology, Science, Climate Change & Environment and attended by more than 500 people from government agencies, private organisations, NGOs, school students & teachers. SMK King George V emerged as the winner of NSC2018, while MRSM Tun Abdul Razak, Kolej Yayasan Saad and Wild Card Team Kedah were in the second, third and fourth places, respectively.


For more photo, please go to the official NSC website.



  • Professor Ir Dr Haslenda Hashim
  • Professor Ir Dr Sharifah Rafidah Wan Alwi
  • Associate Professor Dr Juhana Jaafar
  • Associate Professor Ir Dr Mimi Haryani Hassim
  • Associate Professor Dr Fatin Aliah Phang
  • Associate Professor Dr Suhairul Hashim
  • Dr Nor Alafiza Yunus
  • Dr Azizul Azri Mustaffa
  • Dr Hasrinah Hasbullah
  • Dr Norazana Ibrahim
  • Dr Ho Wai Shin
  • Dr Jaysuman
  • Dr Sheela Chandren
  • Dr Mohd Bakri Bakar
  • Dr Norhaniza Yusof
  • Dr Farhana Aziz
  • Dr Lim Jeng Shiun
  • Dr Mohd Hafiz Puteh
  • Dr Shamila Azman
  • Dr Muzaffar Zainal Abideen
  • Dr Nursyafreena Attan
  • Dr Siti Aminah Setu
  • Dr Abd Rahman Tamuri
  • Dr Mohd Helmi Sani
  • Dr Siti Hajjar Che Man
  • Dr Norfhairna Baharulrazi
  • Dr Afnizanfaizal Abdullah
  • Dr Zaid Omar
  • Dr Nurbiha A. Syukor
  • Dr Nor Ain Husein
  • Encik Muhammad Abdul Razis bin Saidin


Question Committee & Content Development Team

Leader: Dr Mohamed Ibrahim Mohamed Tahir


  • Dr Yap Wing Fen
  • Professor Dr Lim Jit Kang
  • Associate Professor Dr Huda Abdullah
  • Associate Professor Dr Ng Eng Poh
  • Dr Siti Hamimah Sheikh Abdul Kadir
  • Dr Mohd Bakri Bakar
  • Dr Mohana Sundaram Muthuvalu
  • Dr Norlida Mat Daud
  • Dr Nadiah Ghazali
  • Dr Lim Seng Joe
  • Dr Thahira Begum
  • Dr Nurul Huda Osman
  • Dr Iskandar Yahya
  • Dr Rosiah Rohani
  • Dr Nor Alafiza Yunus
  • Dr Wan Hanna Melini Wan Mohtar
  • Dr Maryam Azlan
  • Dr Majid Khan Majahar Ali
  • Dr Lee Yen Cheong
  • Dr Nooraini Zainuddin