FAU Supports Graduate Research with 3MT Competition

A group of Florida Atlantic University graduate students have three minutes to explain their research to an audience with no background in their area of study.


By kelsie-weekes | 10/18/2016

Three minutes. That’s how much time a group of Florida Atlantic University graduate students have to explain their research to an audience with no background in their area of study. It’s part of FAU’s inaugural Three Minute Thesis (3MT) Competition, originally founded by the University of Queensland in 2008, and now at more than 200 universities worldwide. 

“This competition is an excellent vehicle for graduate students to share their research quickly and simply, thereby making it accessible and relevant to the general population,” said Deborah L. Floyd, Ph.D., dean of FAU’s Graduate College.

In the next few weeks, more than 100 FAU students from eight different colleges will present their research in the first round of preliminary heats. Research topics include the risks of social media, the migratory behavior of blacktip sharks, and a metaanalysis of techniques for cervical cancer screenings.

“With just a limited investment of time, the audience will be able to learn about research in diverse areas, ranging from biological sciences and educational psychology, to fine arts and physics,” said Floyd.

Following the presentations, a panel of judges along with input from the audience, will rate the students on comprehension, content, engagement, and communication skills. The winners from each heat will advance to the 3MT Championship. All competitions are free and audience participation is open to anyone.

“This is a fun and engaging way to learn about the variety of graduate student research at FAU,” said Floyd. “I encourage everyone to stop by and take part in a fast-paced, TED Talk-style showcase of amazing graduate student research, representing all of our University’s academic colleges.”

For more information about dates, times and locations of the 3MT Competition, visit www.fau.edu/graduate/3MT.php.

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