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3 Minute Thesis Competition


Active PhD candidates who have successfully passed their confirmation milestone (including candidates whose thesis is under submission) by the date of their first presentation are eligible to participate in the 3MT competition. Graduates are not eligible.

  1. A single static PowerPoint slide is permitted (no slide transitions, animations or 'movement' of any description). See example here

  2. The slide is to be presented from the beginning of the oration.

  3. No additional electronic media (e.g. sound and video files) are permitted.

  4. No additional props (e.g. costumes, musical instruments, laboratory equipment) are permitted

  5. Presentations are limited to 3 minutes maximum and competitors exceeding 3 minutes are disqualified.

  6. Presentations are to be spoken word (e.g. no poems, raps or songs)​

*There will be a warning bell at 2 minutes and the applicant will be cut off at 3 minutes.


At every level of the competition each competitor will be assessed on the two judging criteria listed below.


Please note that each criterion is equally weighted and has an emphasis on audience.

  • Did the presentation provide an understanding of the background to the research question being addressed and its significance?

  • Did the presentation clearly describe the key results of the research including conclusions and outcomes?

  • Did the presentation follow a clear and logical sequence?

  • Was the thesis topic, key results and research significance and outcomes communicated in language appropriate to a non-specialist audience?

  • Did the speaker avoid scientific jargon, explain terminology and provide adequate background information to illustrate points?

  • Did the presenter spend adequate time on each element of their presentation - or did they elaborate for too long on one aspect or was the presentation rushed​

  • Did the oration make the audience want to know more?

  • Was the presenter careful not to trivialise or generalise their research?

  • Did the presenter convey enthusiasm for their research?

  • Did the presenter capture and maintain their audience's attention?

  • Did the speaker have sufficient stage presence, eye contact and vocal range; maintain a steady pace, and have a confident stance?

  • Did the PowerPoint slide enhance the presentation - was it clear, legible, and concise?


If you are interested in competing, please indicate your interest and topic name on your registration form. We will flag you as a competitor when you arrive onsite at the conference.

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