3 Minute Graduate Showcase
Contact Information
Graduate School
211 Tillman Hall
Rock Hill, SC 29733, USA
800/411-7041 (tollfree)
803/323-2292 (fax)

3 Minute Graduate Showcase

3 Minute Graduate Showcase


Join us via Zoom for the 3 Minute Graduate Showcase finals on April 15, 2021 at 6 PM. 


What is the Three Minute Graduate Showcase competition?

The Three Minute Graduate Showcase (3MGS) modifies the Three Minute Thesis (3MT) Competition created by the University of Queensland—a contest that challenges graduate students to summarize their research within three minutes to a general audience. The University of Queensland developed the contest in 2008 to help graduate students improve their oral communication skills.


3 Minute Graduate Showcase at Winthrop

Cash prizes will be awarded to first-place ($300) and second-place winner ($150) and to a “People’s Choice” winner chosen by audience members ($150).


Video Submissions Deadline: March 26, 2021
3MGS Practice Sessions: March 15-17, 2021 at 6 PM




Information for Participants

If you’re interested in competing in the Three Minute Graduate Showcase Competition, you can find the information you need to participate below.

    • Only current graduate students in good academic standing are eligible to compete.
    • A student’s program of study must contain an original research or creative project.
    • The degree program does not require a thesis or dissertation

      Video submissions are due on Friday, March 26th at 5:00 pm

      • 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 (i.e. sound or video files) are permitted.
      • No additional props (i.e. costumes, musical instruments, laboratory equipment) are permitted.
      • Presentations are limited to three minutes maximum; competitors exceeding three minutes are disqualified automatically.
      • Presentations are to be delivered via spoken word (i.e. no poems, raps, or songs).
      • Presentations are considered to have commenced when a presenter starts their presentation through movement or speech.
      • The decision of the adjudicating panel is final.
      • Presentations are to begin with students introducing themselves and identifying their graduate program.
      • Presentations will be recorded and may be shared on the WU Graduate School website and through other media platforms.

    Judges will evaluate competitors on these general categories:

      • 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 research 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 the presenter elaborate for too long on one aspect or was the presentation rushed?
      • Did the oration make the audience want to know more?
      • Was the presenter careful not to trivialize or generalize the research?
      • Did the presenter convey enthusiasm for the research?
      • Did the presenter capture and maintain the audience's attention?
      • Did the speaker have sufficient video 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?

    Please note: Competitors *will not* be judged on video/ recording quality. Judging will focus on the presentation, ability to communicate research to a non-specialist audience, and 3MGS PowerPoint slides.

    • Recommend competitor be standing
    • No additional props (e.g. costumes, musical instruments, laboratory equipment and animated backgrounds) are permitted within the recording
    • Shoot in landscape, not portrait
    • Use a tripod or lean your camera against something steady when shooting your video
    • Light your subject and don’t shoot video with a bright light behind you (like a sunny window)
    • Try to angle the camera so it’s not looking up or down on you
    • Avoid background noise when filming
    • Do not wear clothes with patterns or clothes that will make you blend into the background color
    • Competitor must be visible throughout the video (rather than showing only the slide at any given point)


3MGS Rules and Guidelines (512 KB)


Thanks to our 3MT Judges!

We greatly appreciate the time, feedback, and expertise of our 3MGS final contest judges. Click each judge’s name below to see a brief bio.

    Associate Dean, College of Arts & Sciences

    Director of Graduate Student Services, College of Business Administration

    Associate Dean, College of Visual & Performing Arts

    Assistant Professor, Social Work Department

    Associate Professor, Education Core Department


Past 3MT Winners

2020 Winners

First Place | Nicole Davenport | Arts Administration  [View Video]

Second Place | Oscar Soto | Studio Art  [View Video]

People's Choice | Carson Pender | English  [View Video]


2019 Winners

First Place | Ashley Graham | Biology

Second Place | Taylor Harrison | Human Nutrition

People's Choice | Garrett Driscoll | Biology

Last Updated: 4/13/21