Three Minute Thesis (3MT®)

Three Minute Thesis (3MT®) is a research communication competition developed by The University of Queensland. The competition develops academic, presentation, and research communication skills and supports the development of students' capacities to effectively explain their research in language appropriate to an intelligent but non-specialist audience.

During each competition, graduate students will have three minutes to present a compelling discussion on their research topic, including its significance and relevance, to the general public. 3MT® is not an exercise in trivializing or "dumbing down" research, instead, it forces competitors to consolidate their ideas and crystallize their research discoveries. This is a fast-paced competition where the top 10 finalists compete by summarizing their two to three-plus years of research in only three minutes with only one slide. Cash awards are given to the winner, runner-up, and People's Choice Award winner.

2022 Winners

First Place: Christopher Detranaltes, Agriculture

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3MT® at Purdue

Currently enrolled graduate students in all disciplines at Purdue University will be eligible to participate in 3MT®. Work presented must have been conducted at Purdue University, not from a previous degree, and should be in the final stages so you have some sound conclusions and impacts from your research. Graduates are not eligible. Purdue holds its annual 3MT® competition early each spring. It is a celebration of the discoveries made by graduate students and will allow the broader community to learn about ongoing research at Purdue. It is free and open to the public. Cash awards are given to the winner, runner-up, and People's Choice Award winner.


Nominate Your Student

West Lafayette faculty from all disciplines are encouraged to nominate talented graduate students to represent their academic units in this exciting competition. Nominations are not required for students to participate; they are simply intended to help the graduate school identify and encourage talented students to apply. All currently enrolled graduate students from West Lafayette, regardless of nomination are eligible to apply for 3MT®.

Faculty nominations are due by January 13, 2023.

Faculty Nominations


Cash Awards

  • 1st place $5,000 
  • 2nd place $3,000 
  • People's Choice $2,000 

A panel of judges will select the first and second-place winners, while the People's Choice Award will be selected by the audience.


3MT 2023 Competition Timeline

  • Friday, February 10th: Draft Video Submission Deadline
  • Friday, February 17th: Semifinalists Announced
  • Friday, February 24th: Semifinals 
  • Monday, February 27th: Competition Finalists Announced
  • Tuesday, April 11th: Competition Date

Your Research Pitch

Those interested in competing should submit a draft video of their 3MT® presentation and a copy of their slide by clicking the "Submit Your Video" button below. On this page, you will submit your video recording and PowerPoint slide in two different sections of the Qualtrics form. You are not required to combine your video recording and slide, at this time. 

For tips and tricks on producing your 3MT® draft video, read the Virtual 3MT® Competitor's Guide (PDF)! Preparatory workshops are also available to those interested in participating. Participants are highly encouraged to view the 3MT® Past Winners page for reference. 

Grad Video Submissions

Questions? Email us at purdue3mt@purdue.edu

  • A single static PowerPoint slide is permitted (no slide transitions, animations or "movement" of any description).
  • No additional electronic media (e.g., sound and video files) are permitted.
  • No additional props (e.g., costumes, musical instruments or laboratory equipment) are permitted.
  • Presentations are limited to three minutes maximum, and competitors exceeding three minutes are disqualified.
  • The decision of the judging panel is final, and People's Choice voting results will not be released.
  • All presentations will be videotaped and will appear on the graduate school 3MT® website.
  • Students who are over the cost of attendance allowance may not be eligible for prizes.

Each 3MT® presentation will be judged based on communication style, comprehension, and engagement. Please view our archive of video presentations made by past winners.