Students competing in pressure packed 3 minute thesis

Posted: March 18, 2015 6:00 a.m.

Organizers (l to r) Paul Preston (Bio), Derek Smith (Bio), Jordan Ubbens (Comp Sci) and Carly Graham (Bio)
Organizers (l to r) Paul Preston (Bio), Derek Smith (Bio), Jordan Ubbens (Comp Sci) and Carly Graham (Bio) Rae Graham – U of R Photography

Here’s a challenge. Explain your thesis in three minutes.

If you’re up for it then here’s your opportunity.

The University of Regina is putting on its first Three Minute Thesis (3MT) March 21st. 

“There is a lot of pressure to say everything you need to say about a project that you've spent anywhere from  two to five years working on in just three minutes,” says Paul Preston, 3MT Conference Chair and MSc Candidate in the Department of Biology at the U of R.

“The main goal of the 3MT is to make student research that is being conducted at the university accessible for everyone and I think that is something that is missing from a lot of conferences and presentations.”

Students will be evaluated by a panel of judges made up of faculty and communications specialists from the university and the media. 

“The judges will look for comprehension and content,” says Preston. “Did the presentation help the audience understand the research and was the thesis topic and its significance communicated in language appropriate to an intelligent but non-specialist audience? Did the presentation make the audience want to know more?”

All that in 180 seconds.48 students have signed up and will take the stage to present their thesis.

“This event makes research conducted at the university accessible for everyone including the general public,” says Preston. “It’s also very important for the public to understand exactly what students and academics do and what they provide for society.

“I think that sharing our knowledge with the public is one of our responsibilities as researchers and I think there aren't enough opportunities for this as researchers.”

The 3MT competition was developed by the University of Queensland in Australia in 2008 and has since spread to at least 12 countries. 

To view recent winners and runners up at the Queensland competition please visit:
3MT is presented by the University of Regina Graduate Students’ Association.

Event: Three Minute Thesis
Date: March 21 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Location: University of Regina  - Education Auditorium ED 106
Admission: Free and open to the public