SIGGUUM ONLINE: Sintok International Games and Gamification (SIGG) 2020 is believed to be capable of cultivating creative thinking, entrepreneurship and attracting interest in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).

Organising SIGG for three consecutive years, this year the Universiti Utara Malaysia (UUM) Innovation and Commercialization Centre (ICC) came up with different dimensions when it took place digitally with a touch of interactivity and colourful technology.

Speaking at the opening of SIGG 2020, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research & Innovation), Prof. Dr. Ayoib Che Ahmad said this innovation competition was in line with the needs of today's industry which is more focused on digital, non-digital applications and creative content as well as assisting universities in the development of high-impact innovation products and services.

“In strengthening the Teaching and Learning (TnL) activities, games and gamification are important tools in TnL activities, both in schools or Institutions of Higher Learning (IPT).

"Gamification is an approach that uses game methods (such as video games) in the TnL process that encourages the process to be more interesting and interactive," he said.

He reiterated that according to a study carried out by the University of Mississippi, students who took up the history subject and used gamification in their TnL activities showed interest and were actively involved in the subject.

"From an industrial point of view, the demand for game software and gamification is increasing therefore, we need to provide a platform so that more local content creators in games and gamification increase their innovation and succeed in the market," he added.

He also said that UUM became the first local university to introduce the Bachelor of Creative Industry Management programme offered by SCIMPA which meets the needs of the industry including film production, music, animation and interactive media.

"Students need to be exposed to management and technical skills to prepare themselves in the job market that will require professional and effective management," he said.

SIGG 2020 is a competition organized as an initiative in creating a platform for the public namely from school level to Institutions of Higher Learning to share innovative skills and ideas in planning discovery content in the form of games or gamification towards commercialization in the global market.

Meanwhile, the Director of SIGG 2020, Assoc. Prof. Ts. Dr. Ruzinoor Che Mat said following the COVID-19 pandemic that had evolved into a health, socio-economic and humanitarian crisis with unprecedented impact prompted SIGG to be held online by featuring various game innovations and gamification products.

"This event is a platform for 121 groups comprising 638 participants. Participants will compete in five categories namely Primary School, Secondary School, Diploma / Bachelor Degree, Postgraduate and IHL / Public / Industry in showcasing game innovation and gamification," she said.

She further explained that the 4th event organised by UUM ICC was realized in collaboration with five other Schools namely the School of Creative Industry Management and Performing Arts (SCIMPA), School of Multimedia and Communication Technology (SMMTC), School of Education and Modern Language (SEML), School of Computing (SOC) and the School of Quantitative Science (SQS).

"I would also like extend my heartfelt appreciation and gratitude to the Ministry of Education Malaysia (MOE), Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MOSTI) and Malaysia Innovation Foundation (MIF) for promoting UUM during the National Science Week 2020," she added.