3 Minute Thesis Competition

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Three Minute Thesis (3MT®) is a research communication competition developed by The University of Queensland (UQ). Graduate students have three minutes to present a compelling oration on their thesis and its significance. 3MT is not an exercise in trivializing or “dumbing down” research, but rather challenges students to consolidate their ideas and research discoveries to present concisely to a non-specialist audience. Check out this article in The Scientist Magazine to learn more about the development of the 3MT competition and its adaption in the United States.

3MT at Texas A&M University

At Texas A&M, participation in the 3MT competition provides a valuable high-impact learning experience for graduate students and is part of the G.R.A.D. Aggies professional development program. An important aspect of the Texas A&M 3MT is strengthening graduate students’ research communication skills. Therefore, OGAPS hosts several development sessions to give students opportunities to learn about effective communication. A preliminary competition is held to determine who will advance as finalists in the Texas A&M 3MT. To further boost student development, judges in the preliminary round provide immediate feedback to students regarding their presentation and communication skills. Once students are selected to advance to the final competition, they will participate in another development session to further fine tune their communication skills. The winner of the Texas A&M 3MT Final Competition advances to the regional competition held each spring at the Conference of Southern Graduate Schools Annual Meeting. 

Students may elect to receive credit towards the G.R.A.D. Aggies Professional Development Certificate for participating in the 3MT Competition. Students who participate in the Preliminary Competition will receive 2 Professional Development Units (PDUs) towards their certificate and an additional 1 PDU for attending a development session prior to competing in the Preliminary Competition. The total possible points students can accumulate for participation in the development sessions and Preliminary Competition is 3 PDUs. Students who advance to the Texas A&M 3MT Final Competition will receive 1 additional PDU for participation in the finals. 

2017-2018 Competition

Date Event G.R.A.D. Aggies PDU Value
September 26, 2017 3MT Informational Session 1 PDU
October 2, 2017 Registration Opens for Preliminary Competition    
October 12, 2017 Development Session #1 1 PDU
October 18, 2017 Development Session #2 1 PDU
October 24, 2017 Development Session #3 1 PDU
October 24, 2017 Deadline to Register for Preliminary Competition   
Oct. 31-Nov. 1, 2017 Preliminary Competition 2 PDU
November 8, 2017 Required Development Session for Finalists    
November 16, 2017 Texas A&M 3 Minute Thesis Final Competition 1 PDU
Feb. 22-25th, 2018 Regional 3 Minute Thesis Competition in Fayetteville, Arkansas  


Click here for the Rules, and Eligibility for the competition. 

Past 3MT Competitions at Texas A&M University

2013 - Click here to view details about the first inagural 3MT Competition at Texas A&M in 2013.
2014 - Click here to view more information about the 2014 3 Minute Thesis Competition, including videos of the finalists.
2015-16 - Click here to view more information about the 2015-2016 3 Minute Thesis Competition finalists.
Click here to see the winners of the 2016 3 Minute Thesis Competition.