CEHD Three Minute Thesis (3MT) Competition

What's your elevator speech?

CEHD PhD students have three minutes to concisely and effectively explain their research project in language appropriate to a non-specialist audience.


  • Celebrate the exciting research conducted by PhD students in CEHD
  • Cultivate students' academic, presentation, and research communication skills
  • Develop students' online professional presence via filmed presentations that will be shared on YouTube

Please let us know if you want to participate by signing up here. CEHD faculty will serve as preliminary round judges to determine who will proceed to the final round. The judges' rubric is posted as a PDF below.

Final round will be held on Tuesday, March 23, 2021 at 11:00 a.m. via Zoom as part of CEHD Research Day.

Final round judges: TBD

For more information, e-mail Michael DallaValle, Assistant Director of Graduate Education, at mdallava@umn.edu.

Preliminary rounds will be held

Tuesday, February 16, 2021
3:00-4:00 p.m.
Held via Zoom, sign-up sheet here

Wednesday, February 17, 2021
3:00-4:00 p.m.
Held via Zoom, sign-up sheet here


  • Active PhD student during Spring 2021 semester
  • Previous CEHD 3MT winners (first prize, runner-up, and people's choice) are not eligible to compete a second time


  • Single static PowerPoint slide. No slide transitions, animations, or “movement” of any description are allowed. The slide is to be presented from beginning of oration.
  • No additional electronic media (e.g. sound and video files) are permitted.
  • No additional props (e.g. costumes, musical instruments, lab equipment) are permitted.
  • Presentations are limited to 3 minutes maximum, and participants exceeding 3 minutes are disqualified.
  • Presentations are to commence from the stage.
  • Presentations are to be spoken word (e.g. no poems, raps, or songs).
  • Presentations are considered to have commenced when a presenter starts her presentation through either movement or speech.
  • The decision of the adjudicating panel is final.