Three-Minute Thesis competition challenges students to get to the point

March 31, 2015  

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — The third annual Three-Minute Thesis competition will have an exhibition of finalist presentations at 7 p.m. on April 15 in Stewart Center's Fowler Hall. It is free and open to the public.

Graduate students who participate in the fast-paced competition sponsored by Purdue's Graduate School present their research findings to a lay audience in three minutes, using a single PowerPoint slide.

"This year we want to see audience members from all parts of the community engaged in learning about the amazing research that students are doing," said Linda Mason, associate dean of the Graduate School. "Three-Minute Thesis allows the community to hear about new research directly from the researchers and gain a wide variety of knowledge in a fraction of the time these graduate students have spent studying the topic."

A panel of judges will evaluate presentations based on three criteria: communication style, ability to help audience members understand their research and ability to engage listeners.

The panel of faculty, local media and community members will award a winner $500 and a runner-up $250. Audience members will vote for a People's Choice Award, worth $250.

In 2013 Purdue began hosting the Three-Minute Thesis competition, originally developed by the University of Queensland in 2008 to challenge students to consolidate their ideas and crystallize their research discoveries. More information and videos of previous winners are available here.

Writer: Rachel Semple,

Media contact: Greg McClure, 765-496-9711,

Sources: Janet Beagle, director of the office of graduate admissions, 765-496-1603,

Linda Mason, associate dean, Purdue graduate school, 765-494-0245,

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