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Watch: The Three Minute Thesis!

17 Apr 2015

An 80,000 word thesis would take nine hours to present – our students’ time limit…three minutes!

The Three Minute Thesis ®(3MT) competition challenged PhD students to present a compelling spoken presentation of their research topic and its significance in just three minutes.

From 61 applicants, 46 presenters and 12 finalists emerged one winner, Fiona Henderson.

Fiona, a PhD student in the school of Pharmacy, impressed the judges with her talk entitled ‘A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words – Shedding Light on Cancer’ to take home the £500 first prize.

The event was judged by Professor Amanda Bamford the Associate Dean for Social Responsibility in the Faculty of Life Sciences, Professor Tim O'Brien, the Associate Dean Social Responsibility in the Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences, and Dr Paul Redmond, Director of Student Life.

It is fair to say that they were blown away by both the research and talent on show with Paul declaring: “What we saw was how effectively people can utilise the spoken word within three minutes…it was absolutely spellbinding.”

Laura Newsome, from the School of Earth, Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences, took home the Runner Up prize of £100 with her talk ‘Microbial Magic and Radioactive Remedies.’

Farideh Jalali, from the School of Computer Science, impressed the public audience to take home the People’s Choice prize and another £100.

Janine Watson, Chair of the University of Manchester Alumni Association, really summed up the event: “The range of speakers was great, their content was fascinating and the things they do are incredible. I think Three Minute Thesis is a marvellous event, it really encourages students to learn and in such a supportive environment.”

Fiona will now be entered into the Vitae-hosted UK online Semi Final with a chance of a place in the UK final in September. Good luck Fiona!

To watch all the finalists' performances, visit:

With thanks to Manchester Doctoral College, Faculty Researcher Development Teams, Business Engagement Support Team and the University of Manchester Alumni Association for their kind sponsorship.