Three-Minute Thesis (3MT) Competition


On March 31, 2021, the College of Graduate Studies and Research will host an all-virtual "Three-Minute Thesis" (3MT) Competition for students enrolled in graduate programs through Radford University, Radford University Carilion, and the Roanoke and Southwest Virginia Higher Education Centers.

The 3MT Competition gives graduate students a chance to share their research, discoveries, and insights with a non-specialist audience in a fun, fast-paced format. 3MT participants gain valuable practical experience and bring visibility to their work and field of study.

First developed by the University of Queensland in Australia over a decade ago, the 3MT Competition has since grown to include competitions at hundreds of universities worldwide. All 3MT Competitions follow the same guidelines: A three-minute talk aided by a single static PowerPoint slide; no embedded electronic media; and no props.

Because of the pandemic, the University of Queensland created guidelines governing virtual 3MT events. Participants in a virtual 3MT competition submit their talk as a one-take, pre-recorded video. Winners are then announced during an online ceremony held in real time.

Spring 2021 Competition

The Spring 2021 3MT Competition will be conducted as an all-virtual event. Prizes will be awarded in three categories: First Place, $500; Runner Up, $300; and People's Choice, $300. Winners of the competition will be announced during a online ceremony, which will be held via Zoom on March 31, 2021 at 6 p.m.

Radford graduate students enrolled in programs at the main campus, RUC, RHEC, and SVHEC are eligible to participate if they are doing at least one of the following:

  • developing original research work for a thesis, dissertation, academic/professional conference, or course project
  • producing creative work for a thesis, performance, or installation
  • participating in a capstone experience, such an an internship or clinical/professional practicum

Apply to Participate

Radford and Radford University Carilion graduate students interested in participating should complete the 3MT application online by February 24, 2021.

A three-minute audition video is a required part of the application. Audition videos will not be shown during the competition itself and are not part of the final judging process. For this reason, audition videos can be taken with web cams or cell phones. Read the 3MT guidelines for more information. 


The College of Graduate Studies and Research is committed to facilitating an inclusive event. If you are a person with a disability who anticipates needing accommodations to participate meaningfully in the competition, please contact the College of Graduate Studies and Research at

Learn More

If you have questions about the competition, please contact the College of Graduate Studies and Research at, or consult the resources below: