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Three Minute Thesis

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Three Minute Thesis (3MT) is a worldwide academic competition which challenges PhD students to present their research topic and its significance in a captivating and compelling way to a lay audience, in no more than 180 seconds and with the help of a single static visual aid. Presentations must be brief but not superficial, simple yet content-rich, with competitors sharing their expertise confidently, without jargon, in an engaging and entertaining way.

Started by the University of Queensland in 2008, the 3MT competition has grown into a global initiative involving universities and institutions from around the world.

3MT is more than an academic competition for research students. It makes science more accessible to sponsors, stakeholders, and ultimately, to a global audience. It is an excellent way of bridging the gap between academia and the general public.The ability to convey subject-specific knowledge in simple, straightforward language is also an essential skill for anyone who works in a multidisciplinary research team. 3MT training, and the competition itself, is a fun way to pass on those vital skills to research students and future scholars.

3MT at Kingston University

In 2016 Kingston University joined a prestigious list of UK Universities taking part in the 3MT competition. Six finalists were selected after an initial round and given the opportunity to take part in a one-day workshop which provided personalised training for the 3MT competition.

During the workshop, students worked as a group on their storylines, visual aids and delivery of their 3MT presentations. Participants took it in turns to perform in front of their peers. Their performance was filmed and then commented on by the group, in a supportive and fun environment. This helped them develop storytelling skills many did not know they had.

You can watch all six 2016 semi-finalists deliver their three minute theses below.

Neha Prasad Ainsworth: From anabolic steroids to research chemicals: Exploring the substance use culture in the gym-going population

Why do people use performance enhancing drugs? What do they do? Are they as harmful as people think they are? Neha explores these questions, and many more, through my research – by talking to the community and healthcare providers. The end goal is to gain more knowledge for harm reduction purposes.

Lucky Cullen: Characterising the emergence of antibiotic resistance

Antimicrobial resistance is a significant global threat. A major focus has been the development of new drugs; however, we have yet to understand the evolution of resistance. To enable this, we devised the novel Resistance Evolution Growth Plate which facilitated the generation of highly resistant bacteria in just three days.

Mohamed Habib: Retinal Image Analysis: Learning from the Past

Retinal scans of the eye can indicate early signs of diabetic retinopathy, one of the leading causes of blindness worldwide. Automated detection of these symptoms can assist doctors in identifying these symptoms. My project seeks to improve the accuracy of automated detection of these symptoms from retinal scans.

Tim Gooding: Foundational Forces of Trade: Experiments using Agent-Based Models

We know groups of people are shaped by emergence. This research seeks to understand the emergent forces arising from people interacting in the market economy and how these forces are shaping society.

Fredericka HH Mitchell: Shining a light on bovine salmonellosis: development of a LAMP

Salmonellosis can kill calves in under 48 hours, while our current diagnostics can take up to a week to diagnose the disease. We aim to reduce this time to under an hour, pen-side to the herd. This will increase animal welfare and reduce the impact of salmonellosis on the farmer.

Elina Mitrofanova: Behavioural Reasoning Behind Extreme Dieting Practices in Fashion Models

Orthorexia is an unhealthy obsession with healthy eating. The aims of this project are to explore individuals' experiences of this restrained eating practice, better define what it actually is (eating disorder or a combination of obsessive compulsive features), and potentially design a scale to measure this phenomenon.

Research
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