Three Minute Thesis
The Three Minute Thesis (3MT®) is an academic competition that assists current graduate students with fostering effective presentation and communication skills.
Participants have just three minutes to explain the breadth and significance of their research project to a non-specialist audience. Students can use only one slide, and are not allowed to use props or aids.
The judges look for clear language, a well-structured presentation that engages the audience, and a slide that is designed to support the speaker’s points.
The first 3MT was held at The University of Queensland (UQ), Australia in 2008. The 3MT competition was hosted at UBC’s Okanagan campus for the first time in 2014, and at UBC’s Vancouver campus in 2011. The 2019 competition will be the sixth competition at UBC Okanagan.
Questions about 3MT at UBC Okanagan?
Contact Pieter Uni at email: firstname.lastname@example.org or tel: (250) 807-9413 for general questions. Comments, feedback and suggestions welcome.
If you are a UBC Okanagan graduate student in a thesis-based program, you are eligible to compete in 3MT at UBC Okanagan. To register to participate, please contact the heat organizers in your faculty or school.
- Simon Clews, University of Melbourne, has also prepared a helpful guideline for Making the Most of Your Three Minutes
- Jackie Amsden (Simon Fraser University) discusses how narrative frameworks can help grad students effectively tell their research story
- Matt Abrahams (Stanford University) provides Tips and Techniques for More Confident and Compelling Presentations
- Anett Grant (Executive Speaking) addresses Six Pieces of Bad Speaking Advice That Just Won’t Die
- Ontario Consortium for Graduate Professional Skills posted 6 Components of Successful 3MT Speeches (video)
- Inger Mewburn (RMIT) has developed a presentation about the 3MT
- Download the 3MT PowerPoint template and follow the instructions to prepare the slide for your presentation
3MT participants must consider copyright when creating the slide. All images must be properly attributed and copyright checks must be made. Use public domain or your own image(s) where you still retain copyright or images with a licence that permits your intended use. Written (email is fine) permission is needed for all other image use. For more information on copyright guidelines for image use see: UBC’s copyright guidelines and resources.
Confidentiality and Intellectual Property
3MT participants must understand that presentation of their research in 3MT will be publicly accessible.
- Judges, staff and the audience will not be asked to sign non-disclosure statements. If your research is being/has been conducted under contract with an outside sponsor, please discuss the related contractual terms of confidentiality and intellectual property with your supervisor(s) before participating in the competition.
- All public sessions of the competition, including but not limited to oral presentations, are open to the public. Public sessions may be broadcast to interested persons through media (YouTube, Websites etc.).
- Any data or information discussed or presented in public sessions should be considered public. If your research includes confidential material we advise that you discuss your participation in the competition with your supervisor(s) before participating.
UBC Okanagan, in coordinating the 3MT competition, may take photographs and film the presentations for promotional purposes. Participants may also be asked for interviews about their participation in the competition.
The winner will also advance to the Western Regional 3MT Competition, which is held at a different western Canadian university each year. The winner must be available to present IN PERSON at the Western Regional 3MT competition. If the winner of the UBC Okanagan final is not available, the runner up will take their place.
How to Rock the 3MT – Competition & Presentation Skills Info Sessions:
3MT Practice Sessions:
Jan. 17 Session: 2 p.m. – 3 p.m. in LIB 225: Drop in – no registration required.
Jan. 29 Session: Noon – 1 p.m. in LIB 225: Drop in – no registration required.
3MT Copyright Sessions:
To sign-up for a heat, please contact the individual/s from your respective faculty below.
School of Engineering
Date: Feb. 9: 1 p.m. in EME 1153
Faculty of Health and Social Development
Date: Feb. 26: 3:30 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. in SCI 337
Date: Thursday, March 14, 2019
Time: 5 p.m. – 8 p.m.
Location: The Innovation Centre (460 Doyle Ave, Kelowna, BC)
Free tickets are available at ubco-3mt-tickets.eventbrite.com
“I have found the 3MT to be an extremely rewarding experience. Making our research accessible to the public is an integral part of academia, but it so often gets overlooked. In the age of social media, combatting the “fake news” with real, exciting, and scientifically-backed facts is all-important. For me, the 3MT was an exercise in stepping outside the comfort of my own narrow research field and taking a hard look at it from an outsider’s perspective: how does my research fit into the big picture, and what makes it important? These are questions that graduate students and researchers should be asking themselves every day, because it keeps our goals grounded but also gives our research purpose and direction. The 3MT competition was an excellent opportunity to highlight my research, but was also an opportunity for me to practice my public speaking skills and receive valuable feedback from the coaches and judges. This was my first 3MT experience, and I look forward to competing again next year.” – Sydney Morgan, Biology, 3MT 2018 Winner
“In academia, we often get lost in the details of our research design and methodologies; but the process of preparing for and refining my 3MT certainly helped me to gain perspective on my my PhD project. In today’s fast-paced world, simplifying complexity is a powerful tool. In the words of Albert Einstein, “If you can’t explain it to a six year old, you don’t understand it yourself.” Even at the start of my doctoral training, this exercise has been invaluable for me to learn how to better shape my message in teaching, in building collaborations, in applying for funding, and in recalibrating my study objectives. Furthermore, having had the chance to learn about the incredible research, across countless disciplines, from the other participants in the 3MT at UBCO (in a way that even I can understand!) has been nothing short of inspiring. I would certainly encourage all graduate students to commit to this process, and give the 3MT a try; in our careers, translating research into relevant and engaging communications will undoubtedly be an important skill that I am glad to have had the opportunity to develop for this event.” John Sasso, Interdisciplinary Studies, 3MT 2017 Winner
UBCO 3MT FINAL
- Date: Thursday, March 14, 2019
- Time: 4 p.m. – 8 p.m.
- Location: The Innovation Centre (460 Doyle Ave, Kelowna, BC)
- Contact: The College of Graduate Studies (250-807-9413)
- Tickets: ubco-3mt-tickets.eventbrite.com
WHAT IS 3MT?
Three Minute Thesis (3MT®) celebrates the exciting research conducted by UBCO graduate students. Developed by The University of Queensland, the event cultivates students’ academic, presentation, and research communication skills. The competition supports their capacity to effectively explain their research in three minutes, in a language appropriate to a non-specialist audience.
The Three Minute Thesis (3MT®) is an academic competition that assists current graduate students with fostering effective presentation and communication skills. Graduate students participate in the 3MT competition with the aim of presenting their research to a non-specialized audience in just three minutes. Participants can use only one slide, and are not allowed to use props or aids. The judges look for clear language, a well-structured presentation that engages the audience, and a slide that is designed to support the speaker’s points. The first 3MT was held at The University of Queensland (UQ), Australia in 2008. The 3MT competition was hosted at UBC’s Okanagan campus for the first time in 2014, and at UBC’s Vancouver campus in 2011. The 2018 competition will be the fifth competition at UBC Okanagan (UBCO).
ABOUT UBC’S OKANAGAN CAMPUS
The Okanagan campus is an intimate learning community embracing bold new ways of thinking that attract exceptional students and faculty. Approximately 9,000 students from throughout the Okanagan region, across Canada and 90 other countries are enrolled in undergraduate and graduate programs in eight faculties and schools. The University of
British Columbia’s Okanagan campus opened in Kelowna in 2005. UBC is one of North America’s largest public research and teaching institutions, and one of only two Canadian institutions consistently ranked among the world’s 40 best universities. With $14.5 million in annual research funding, and more than 700 research projects underway, the Okanagan campus is earning a reputation as an important, respected centre of learning and research, enhancing knowledge creation and innovation.
3MT provides ideal sponsorship opportunities for organizations to position themselves as a driving force behind university-industry interaction. The 2018 3MT competition is a powerful way to promote your organization, increase brand awareness and promote user preference among research higher degree students, event attendees, the wider community and industry partners.
- Sponsoring the 3MT competition can help you raise the profile of your organization’s brand, products and services within the domestic and international education market
- Marketing opportunities and international exposure during the life of the event
- Support the next generation of inspiring researchers
- Logo placement on flyers, websites, email marketing campaigns, signage
- Connect directly with future research leaders
- Access to influential and engaged delegates
- Brand exposure on the 3MT website
- 3MT promotion on UBCO social networking sites
- Brand association with a research intensive University and a cutting-edge competition. 3MT has developed a strong international brand that resonates with a driven, educated and multicultural audience
- Improve your website’s Search Engine
- Optimisation by harnessing the strength of the 3MT brand
LEADS AND BUSINESS PARTNERSHIPS
- Establish new contacts and networks with UBCO researchers, students and alumni
- Connect with key decision makers. This year invitations will be extended to leading scientists, researchers, scholars, community groups, government agencies and corporate leaders
- Your contribution will help support research communication and the development of our future leaders
GOLD SPONSORSHIP PACKAGE
The Gold 3MT sponsorship package includes:
- Recognition as “Gold Sponsor” of the UBCO 3MT competition
- Company logo featured on all UBCO 3MT promotional materials
- Your marketing/brand message, company name and sponsorship featured in the 3MT press release, social media and website
- Exclusive opportunity to present prize to the UBCO 3MT People’s Choice recipient
- Photo opportunity with the 3MT Finalists – Winner/Runner-Up/People’s Choice
- Recognition of your sponsorship on UBCO social media platforms
- Official sponsor of 3MT Reception Event, with access to VIP guests, honoured invitees, 3MT participants, 3MT judges and College of Graduate staffSPECIAL OPPORTUNITY: Recognition as the sole sponsor of the UBCO College of Graduate Student Orientation event, hosted in August 2018UBCO 3MT Gold Sponsorship: $5,000
BLUE SPONSORSHIP PACKAGE
The Blue 3MT sponsorship package includes:
- Recognition as “Blue Sponsor” of the UBCO 3MT competition
- Company logo featured on all UBCO 3MT promotional materials
- Your marketing/brand message, company name and sponsorship featured in the 3MT press release and social media and website
- Recognition of your sponsorship on UBCO social media platforms
- On stage promotion (logo, acknowledgement by MC)UBCO 3MT Blue Sponsorship: $3,000
Are you interested in reserving either the Gold or Blue Sponsorship package? Please contact Pieter Uni, Manager, Communications and Engagement, College of Graduates Studies (email@example.com or 250-807-9413) for more information.
Western Regional 3MT Competition
The Western Regional 3MT Competition is open to Western Canadian Deans’ Agreement participating Universities hosting a local 3MT competition. Eligible participants must have won their local competition, and be a Master’s or PhD student in a graduate program eligible for Tri-Council funding. This year’s Western Regional 3MT Competition will be hosted by the University of Northern British Columbia on April 17, 2019.
For more information about the Western Regional 3MT Competition, visit the Western Canadian Deans of Graduate Studies website.
National 3MT Competition
The top three competitors at the Western Regional 3MT Competition will go on to compete at the National Canadian Competition, organized by the Canadian Association for Graduate Studies (CAGS).
For more information about the National 3MT Competition and to view the rules, visit the CAGS website.