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Three Minute Thesis at Nevada

A Graduate Student Competition

Journalism Student Presenter

One scholar.

One slide.

One panel of judges.

And three minutes to give it all they've got.

Calling all three-minute scholars! The deadline for competition registration is Friday, March 17 at 11:59 p.m. Our panel of judges can't wait to see what innovative research presentations you have in store this year.

The top three contestants from groups A1, B1, A2, B2, and the top six contestants from group C will be awarded $300 and will compete in the final round. Submit your presentation using the appropriate Group description link below.

Liberal Arts/Education/Business

Monday, Mar 27, 2017, at 7 p.m. in the  Wells Fargo Auditorium (MIKC).

Sciences/Engineering/Mathematics/Health Sciences

Tuesday, Mar 28, 2017, at 7 p.m. in the  Wells Fargo Auditorium (MIKC).

Professional Project (Business/EdD/Journalism/MSN/DNP, etc.)

  • Group C: Professional Project Students

Thursday, Mar 30, 2017, at 7 p.m.  in the Wells Fargo Auditorium (MIKC).

In the final round you'll compete against the six finalists at your degree level:

  • Group A — Doctoral Students
  • Group B — Master's Students
  • Group C — Professional Projects Students

Thursday, Apr 20, 2017, at 7 p.m. in the Wells Fargo Auditorium (MIKC). Reception starts at 6:30 p.m.

Winners from each group of the final round will be awarded as follows:
First Place: $1,000
Second Place: $600
Third Place: $400


  1. A single, static PowerPoint slide in 16x9 format is required (pdfs not allowed).
  2. Include your presentation title, full name, and graduate program on the slide.
  3. First-place winners from the last year's 3MT competition are ineligible to compete, however last year's second- and third-place winners are eligible to compete.
  4. No slide transitions, animations or on-screen movement of any description are allowed.
  5. The slide is to be presented from the beginning of the oration.
  6. No additional electronic media (e.g. sound and video files) are permitted.
  7. No additional props (e.g. costumes, musical instruments, laboratory equipment) are permitted.
  8. Presentations are limited to three minutes maximum; competitors exceeding three minutes are disqualified.
  9. Presentations are to be spoken word (e.g. no poems, raps or songs).
  10. Presentations are to commence from the stage.
  11. Presentations are considered to have commenced when a presenter starts their presentation through either movement or speech.
  12. The decision of the adjudicating panel is final.
  13. All monetary awards for both preliminary and final rounds are pre-tax amounts.


  1. Abstracts are limited to 250 words.


  1. Students must be graduate students to enter the competition.
  2. While advancement to candidacy is not required, students must have made significant progress towards completion of their dissertation, thesis, or professional project in order to enter the competition.
  3. Winners will be announced approximately one week after the competition.
  4. You will be asked to sign a photo-video release at the event to allow the University of Nevada, Reno to use your likeness in photos/videos of the competition.
  5. The deadline for competition registration is Friday, March 17, 11:59 p.m.

Comprehension & 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 their presentation - or did they elaborate for too long on one aspect or was the presentation rushed?

Engagement & 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?

Congratulations to our 2016 Winners!

Thank you to all of our participants in the 2016 competition and to everyone who attended the presentations. We are so proud of our graduate students and the research impacts they are making for the world.

Doctoral Students

1st Place: Robert del Carlo, Ph.D., Cellular and Molecular Pharmacology and Physiology
Diverge Another Day: Garter Snakes Evade Certain Death by Evolving to Toxic Prey

2nd Place: Kathleen Hill, Ph.D., Educational Leadership
Early Adolescents' Understanding of College and Career Readiness Conceptually and in Relation to Their Own Lives

3rd Place: David Rodriguez, Ph.D., Material Science and Engineering
Green Technology to Keep the Skies Blue

Master's Students

1st Place: Amanda Rankin, Anthropology
High Altitude Plant Processing in the Intermountain West

2nd Place: Drew Sheehy, Environmental Science and Health
Beaver Repellant in Aspen Trees

3rd Place: Corey Trujillo, Mechanical Engineering
Evaporation in Used Nuclear Fuel Casks During Forced Helium Dehydration

Professional Project Students

1st Place: Rachel Martinez, Social Work
Assessing the Needs of DBT Families During the Patient's Stay at Willow Springs Center

2nd Place: Randy Khong, Social Work
"What About Us?" Identifying Therapeutic Foster Care Parents as Key Stakeholders

3rd Place: Larissa White, Public Health
Chronic Disease Comorbidities in Patients with HIV: A Descriptive Study in Northern Nevada

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