• Florence Awino and Adrian Dusting

    Florence Awino and Adrian Dusting

  • Erica Walls-Nichols and Marcus Butler

    Erica Walls-Nichols and Marcus Butler

  • Foyez Shams and Shubhra Roy

    Foyez Shams and Shubhra Roy

  • Tessa Daffern and Mike Gaffney

    Tessa Daffern and Mike Gaffney

  • Berenice Talamantes, Elaine Cheung and Emory Ingles

    Berenice Talamantes, Elaine Cheung and Emory Ingles

  • Joelle Vandermensbrugghe, Mel Timpson and David Williams

    Joelle Vandermensbrugghe, Mel Timpson and David Williams

  • Helen Marsden and Max Halupka

    Helen Marsden and Max Halupka

  • Sean Dicks and Peter Copeman

    Sean Dicks and Peter Copeman

  • Rachel Frost and Marion Snowden

    Rachel Frost and Marion Snowden

  • Assistant Professor Tessa Daffern

    Assistant Professor Tessa Daffern

  • Adrian Dusting

    Adrian Dusting

  • Max Halupka

    Max Halupka

  • Hayley Teasdale

    Hayley Teasdale

  • 3MT....Launch

    3MT....Launch

  • Helen Marsden

    Helen Marsden

University of Canberra 'Three Minute Thesis' Competition Launch

8 June 2016

An initiative of the University of Canberra with a competition promoted by the Graduate Research and Researcher Development at UC is the 3MT ( Three Minute Thesis) which gives PhD students an opportunity to communicate their research, learn how to prepare and present it and maybe win $3,500, and a trip to the Asia-Pacific final, with benefits across the board for those studying in their lonely room wondering if anyone cares.

It reminds me of Colleen McCulloch spending 10 years at Yale University researching and teaching in the Department of Neurology. But it was in her digs that she penned The Thorn Birds at the same time. And we all know what happened with that blockbuster but nothing of her other research.

And how good it would be if every PhD student could concertina their efforts into a three minute presentation, but they have a fair bit of work ahead when, I’m told, the average dissertation of 80,000 words takes nine hours.

But the benefits of this little trial run are enormous. Confidence is number one. If you’ve never so much as engaged in any kind of public speaking this is a good start. The media coverage will get your dissertation communicated as a thesis sitting on a bookshelf wont do you any favours. There’s exposure to other students, opportunities to network, prize money and the opportunity to travel to tempt you.

For the launch of the 2016 competition previous winners in various categories gathered at Coffee Grounds for a launch party with lots of balloons, food and damn fine coffee. Among them previous winners including Hayley Teasdale, Faculty of Health the 2015 UC 3MT winner, Dr. Max Halupka, Institute of Governance and Policy Analysis, the 2014 UC 3MT winner, Dr. Adrian Dusting, Institute of Applied Ecology, the 2013 3MT winner and Assistant Professor Tessa Daffern, UC Faculty of Education, Science, Technology and Maths the 2014 Charles Sturt University 3MT and People’s Choice winner with Dr Helen Marsden the Director of Graduate Research and Researcher Development at UC which is the sponsor of the competition introducing the speakers.  

It sounds daunting, but the benefits outweigh any reticence. And I learnt more in just a tad more than three minute chatting to Dr. Max Halupka about political theory. A pleasant diversion from the current political overload of an eight week campaign.