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What is the Three Minute Thesis Competition?

The Three Minute Thesis (3MT) is a competition which takes place in the spring of every year at universities throughout the world. The idea started in Australia and has quickly spread to many other countries. The idea is simple, students who are completing their thesis research present a single slide and have three minutes to explain to a panel of judges how and why their research is exciting, important, and innovative. One slide, and three minutes exactly. 

NOTE: you do not need be in the process of finishing or defending your thesis. The 3MT is for anyone who is working on their thesis research and can present it.

Participants from Social Science in University Competition


  • Rachel Plouffe - Psychology


Learn more

How do the competitions work?

The structure of the competition is similar to a competitive talent show. Across campus faculties will hold their own “heats”; some faculties are grouped together based on historic participation rates. 

The top 20 “finalists” across all of the faculties will be invited to the university-level competition in the spring. The winner from the Western University competition will compete at the Provincial level against students from other Ontario universities. 

For 2019, Arts & Humanities, Education, FIMS, IVEY, Law, Music and Social Science are grouped in one heat.

The competition for this group will be on Friday, March 1, 2019
Time: 9:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.
Location: International and Graduate Affairs Building (IGAB), Room #1N05

Last Day to Register: Friday, February 22, 2019

Rules, evaluation criteria and eligibility

There are more detailed about rules, evaluation criteria and eligibility requirements.

For more information, see Competition Details.

What are the benefits?

  1. Prepare a short description of your research. Communicating your research succinctly is a crucial academic skill.
  2. Learn what other graduate students are doing in your department, faculty, and university.
  3. Your work will receive increase exposure in the university.  At the higher levels, your work could receive media exposure. See this write up in the Toronto Star from the 2013 competition.
  4. Even being a finalist at the Dean's level competition warrants inclusion on your CV.

How do I register?

  • Contact Paul Minda.  You will be asked to send your single PowerPoint slide to him.   The Dean's Office will hold the Social Science competition – (see the date at the top of this page).  
  • You also need to register for the Faculty Competition at the SGPS website. Registration will close one week before the faculty heat date.  There will be no exceptions for missed deadlines.