Three Minute Thesis (3MT) Competition

3MT logo

The Three Minute Thesis (3MT®) Competition celebrates the exciting research being performed by graduate students and cultivates their academic, presentation and research communication skills by challenging them to present their research to a non-specialist audience in three minutes (180 seconds!) or less using only one PowerPoint slide. Developed by the University of Queensland (UQ) in 2008, the 3MT® Competition is currently held at 900 colleges and universities across more than 85 countries worldwide.

The Graduate School is excited to host Binghamton University's first-ever Three Minute Thesis (3MT®) Competition!

Congratulations to our Spring 2020 winners!

  • 1st Place & People's Choice Award:  Erika Solano Diaz - Biomedical Engineering, MS

Presentation Title: Hey mTg! Make me worse, why don't you? A Tale of Celiac Disease

Faculty Advisor: Gretchen Mahler

  • 2nd Place: Mavi Ruiz-Blondet - Cognitive Psychology, PhD

Presentation Title: Photographing or Painting Reality? How Human Perception Works

Faculty Advisor: Vladimir Miskovic

  • 3rd Place: Mridu Malik - Biomedical Engineering, PhD

Presentation Title: The Undetected Invaders

Faculty Advisor: Gretchen Mahler

Final Round Participants:

Wednesday, March 4, 2020 - Old Union Hall - 11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.

Student Graduate Program Faculty Advisor(s) Presentation Title
Tyler Rust Geology, PhD Jeff Pietras The Mixed-Up World of Mudstone
Md. Shahriar Islam Public Administration, PhD Nadia Rubaii Memories of the Genocide and Trust in Government
Erika Solano Biomedical Engineering, MS Gretchen Mahler Hey mTg! Make me worse, why don't you? A Tale of Celiac Disease
Preeth Sivakumar Mechanical Engineering, PhD Junghyun Cho Polymer Coating to Reduce the Circuit Failure in Satellite
Matthew Pereira Biological Sciences, PhD Laura Musselman The Next Piece
Haley Arnold Biological Sciences, PhD Jay Sobel Staying In vs. Going Out: How Habitat Choice Can Lead to Species Divergence
Mridu Malik Biomedical Engineering, PhD Gretchen Mahler The Undetected Invaders
Smaraki Mohanty Marketing, PhD Jinfeng Jiao & Subimal Chatterjee To Err is Human
Jessica Smeeks Anthropology, PhD William H. Isbell Another Piece in the Puzzle We Call War
Mavi Ruiz-Blondet Cognitive Psychology, PhD Vladimir Miskovic Photographing or Painting Reality? How Human Perception Works


  • 1st Place: $500.00 (plus the opportunity to compete at the annual meeting of the Northeastern Association of Graduate Schools in April 2020.)
  • 2nd Place: $400.00
  • 3rd Place: $300.00
  • People’s Choice: $150.00 (to be selected by audience at the final round)

Eligibility Rules

  • Currently enrolled course-complete master’s (CC) and doctoral students who have been admitted to candidacy (ABD) from all disciplines are eligible to compete. 
  • Students should be in the final stages of their graduate career so that they have sound conclusions and impacts from their research.
  • Students must be in good academic standing.
  • All research presented must be associated with Binghamton University.
  • Alumni are not eligible.
  • Students who are selected to participate must be available to present in person at the preliminary and final rounds. 

Presentation Rules

  • A single static PowerPoint slide is permitted. No slide transitions, animations or ‘movement’ of any description are allowed. The slide is to be presented from the beginning of the oration.
  • No additional electronic media (e.g. sound and video files) are permitted.
  • No additional props (e.g. costumes, musical instruments, laboratory equipment) are permitted.
  • Presentations are limited to 3 minutes maximum and competitors exceeding 3 minutes will be disqualified.
  • Presentations are to be spoken word (e.g. no poems, raps or songs).
  • Presentations are to commence from the stage.
  • Presentations are considered to have commenced when a presenter starts their presentation through either movement or speech.
  • The decision of the adjudicating panel is final.

Judging Criteria

The goal is for the presenter to successfully engage a non-specialist audience and effectively convey the excitement and innovation of their research. Presentations will be evaluated by a diverse judging panel focusing on two core competencies:

Content and Comprehension: 
  • Did the presentation help the audience understand the research? 
Communication and Engagement:
  • Did the presentation make the audience want to know more?

How to apply to participate in the 3MT® Competition

Step #1 - Discuss your interest in participating in the 3MT® Competition with your faculty adviser. Obtain his/her approval to participate and present your research. 

Step #2 - Submit a 3MT® Competition Registration Form

*Note: When selecting your presentation title, please try to avoid technical jargon and choose a title that is short, catchy and true to your research. 

The deadline to apply to participate in the 3MT® Competition is Jan. 30, 2020. Selected participants will be contacted via email starting Feb. 1, 2020. 

Preparation Workshops 

Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2020 - 3:00-4:00 p.m. in AD 148

Thursday, Feb. 13, 2020 - 10:00-11:00 a.m. in AD 148 

Other Resources


Please contact Ellen Tilden (, Assistant Director for Academic & Graduate Student Affairs, with any questions or concerns you may have regarding the 3MT® Competition or your eligibility to participate.