About 3MT

About Three Minute Thesis (3MT®)

Why 3MT® ? • History • Why we're doing it

Why 3MT®​?

Three Minute Thesis (3MT®) is an academic competition developed by The University of Queensland (UQ), Australia, for Ph.D. students in 2008.  Since the first 3MT® competition was held at UQ in 2008, the competition has grown to be held in 19 countries and more than 35 research universities in the United States.

The goal of the 3MT® competition is for Ph.D. students from all departments and colleges to cultivate the ability to explain their research, including both breadth and significance, in a language appropriate to an audience containing both specialists and non-specialists, all within 3 minutes. The 3MT® competition provides graduate students with the opportunity to sharpen their professional development skills, reignite their passion for discovery, promote preeminent research, and foster community within the Graduate School.    3MT® will be a venue for graduate students from various disciplines to interact with one another and discuss their research and its implications.  The competition provides an opportunity for undergraduates, alumni, industry partners, various on-campus departments/institutions and the community to be exposed to high-level, cutting-edge research being performed at the University of Notre Dame. 



The first 3MT® was held at The University of Queensland in 2008 with 160 students competing. Enthusiasm for the 3MT® concept grew and its adoption by numerous universities led to the development of a Trans-Tasman international competition, starting in 2010, involving 33 universities in Australia, New Zealand, and Fiji.

In 2011, the Trans-Tasman 3MT® competition grew to 43 universities and, for the first time, regional 3MT® events were held in the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, and Hong Kong.  Since coming to to the United States, 3MT® has expanded to over 35 research institutions.

Why we're doing it

At the University of Notre Dame, 3MT® is part of an overall strategy to contribute to the following objectives:

  • Promote our graduate students
  • Promote research at the University of Notre Dame
  • Sharpen professional development skills
  • Connect with the community