Three Minute Thesis (3MT™) is an international research communication competition developed by The University of Queensland in Australia. The goal of the competition is to develop students’ academic, presentation, and research communication skills. Doctoral students have three minutes – and a single PowerPoint slide - to present compelling and engaging talks on their dissertation topic and its significance. 3MT™ is not an exercise in "watering down" research but empowers students to consolidate their ideas and concisely explain their research discoveries to non-specialist audiences.

Save the Date! The 2017 Three Minute Thesis will be April 5, 2017.
All Hopkins PhD students invited to participate: Register Here


The JHM Professional Development and Career Office sponsored the inaugural 3MT™ Competition April 20, 2016; congratulations to all participating students and competition winners:

First Place and People’s Choice: Alexandra Pucsek, Immunology
Cancer Unmasked: How Inhibiting a Small Protein Could Boost Anti-Tumor Immunity (VIDEO)

Second Place: Amanda Edwards, Biomedical Engineering
Tricking the Brain into Exceeding Its Abilities (VIDEO)

Third Place: Ken Estrellas, Cellular and Molecular Medicine
Stem Cell Treatments to Restore Missing Muscle Protein (VIDEO)

The JHMI winners competed in the Maryland state-wide 3MT Competition May 5 against students from the University of Maryland-College Park, University of Maryland-Baltimore and University of Maryland-Baltimore County. Congratulations to JHMI students for placing in the state competition:

Winners of the 2016 3MT Maryland Competition: Ken Estrellas and Alexandra Pucsek

First Place in Maryland Competition: Ken Estrellas, Cellular and Molecular Medicine
(Second from the left)

Third Place in Maryland Competition: Alexandra Pucsek, Immunology
(Far left)


Currently enrolled JHMI doctoral students are eligible. The student must be admitted to Ph.D. candidacy and actively engaged in research. JHMI master's-level students who are interested in competing, may participate in the Preliminary Heats.

Event Schedule

Three Minute Thesis (3MT) Information Sessions

Monday, January 23rd from 12:00PM-1:00PM in 1830 East Monument Building Room 2-108
Monday, January 30th from 12:00PM-1:00PM in 1830 East Monument Building Room 2-108

The Professional Development and Career Office (PDCO) will hold two separate information sessions for graduate students interested in learning more about the 3MT Competition. Information sessions are not mandatory for those who plan to participate in 3MT. You do not need to attend both information sessions.

Register for 3MT Information Sessions

Three Minute Thesis (3MT) 2017 Finals

The Hopkins 3MT Finals will be held Wednesday, April 5 at 2 p.m. in Turner Auditorium.

Register to compete in the 3MT Competition

Prize Information (JHMI Final Competition Only)

Prizes for the JHMI Competition are as follows:

  • Winner: $1000
  • Second Place: $500
  • Third Place: $250
  • People’s Choice: $250

More Information

A selection of videos of award-winning presentations from a variety of universities are available on the 3MT™ website .
For questions about the JHMI competition, please contact Lisa Borello at 410-502-0909 or

Download a list of Frequently Asked Questions (PDF)

Rules and Judging Criteria


A single static PowerPoint slide is permitted (no slide transitions, animations. or movement of any description; 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 three minutes maximum, and competitors exceeding three minutes are disqualified. Presentations are to be spoken word (e.g., no poems, raps, or songs). Presentations are considered to have commenced when a presenter starts his/her presentation through movement or speech. The decision of the adjudicating panel is final.

Judging Criteria

Presentations will be judged based on the following criteria:

Engagement and Communication
  • Did the oration make the audience want to know more?
  • Was the presenter careful not to trivialize or generalize their research?
  • Did the presenter convey enthusiasm for their research?
  • Did the presenter capture and maintain their audience's attention?
  • Did the speaker have sufficient stage presence, eye contact, and vocal range; maintain a steady pace; and have a confident stance?
  • Did the PowerPoint slide enhance the presentation? Was it clear, legible, and concise?
Comprehension and Content
  • Did the presentation provide an understanding of the background to the research question being addressed and its significance?
  • Did the presentation clearly describe the key results of the research including conclusions and outcomes?
  • Did the presentation follow a clear and logical sequence?
  • Was the thesis topic, key results and research significance, and outcomes communicated in language appropriate to a non-specialist audience?
  • Did the speaker avoid scientific jargon, explain terminology, and provide adequate background information to illustrate points?
  • Did the presenter spend adequate time on each element of the presentation — or did he/she elaborate for too long on one aspect or was the presentation rushed?