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Southern Miss to Host Three-Minute Thesis Competition Nov. 2-4

Tue, 10/25/2016 - 09:51am | By: Van Arnold

Graduate students at The University of Southern Mississippi will have an opportunity to showcase their current thesis and dissertation efforts as part of the popular Three Minute Thesis (3MT) competition to be held on the Hattiesburg campus.

The competition's preliminary rounds will be held from 2-5 p.m. on Nov. 2-3 at the Trent Lott Center. Eight students will compete in the finals, set for 2-4 p.m. on Nov. 4.

The Three Minute Thesis competition invites graduate students to describe the significance of his/her thesis or dissertation to a general audience in three minutes or less. Cash prizes will be awarded to the eight finalists – ranging from $250 for finalists to $1,000 for the Grand Champion.

Dr. Karen Coats, dean of the Graduate School at USM, notes that the annual competition serves as an important professional development event for students.

“It helps them develop one of the most important ‘transferrable' skills – communication,” said Coats. “Each student must be able to articulate the importance of their research to a general audience, outside of their specific discipline, in less than three minutes. This exercise prepares students to meet the real world where they may need to explain why their research is important to any number of people outside of their field of study, including potential employers, policy-makers, peers, even their family.”

The competition is open to any active master's, specialist or doctoral student who has not graduated prior to Fall 2016. They must present current work. Students will compete in one of the following four categories: 1) arts and humanities; 2) life, health and environmental sciences; 3) physical sciences and mathematics; 4) social and educational sciences and business.

Participants are required to follow a spoken word format (no poems, raps, or songs permitted). A single static PowerPoint slide is permitted, but no additional electronic media or props are allowed.

To learn more about the Southern Miss Graduate School and the Three Minute Thesis competition, call 601.266.4369 or visit: