Four UK PhD students in three-minute thesis final

Four PhD students from UK universities have made it to the final of a competition that challenges them to present their research in three minutes

October 12, 2014

The students beat off competition from about 800 others from eight countries as part of Universitas 21’s Three Minute Thesis competition.

Each of them has created a three-minute video that highlights the significance of their work in fields as diverse as nano materials, gravity imaging, HIV and plant genetics.

The students come from the universities of Birmingham, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Nottingham.

The Three Minute Thesis competition was first developed by the University of Queensland in 2008 to give junior researchers the chance to develop their communication and presentation skills.

Several organisations now run their own version of the competition, including Universitas 21, a network of research-intensive universities worldwide.

Universitas 21 chose 17 finalists after a series of local competitions at member institutions. The UK students are up against entries from the universities of Hong Kong, Queensland, Connecticut and Auckland among others.

The videos are now online for the pubic to vote for a “people’s choice” winner. A panel of industry experts and academics will judge the winning and highly commended videos on 28 October.

The UK finalists are:

  • Do some strains of HIV make people sick more quickly than others? Emma Hodcroft, third year, University of Edinburgh
  • Building a better future with nano materials. Mohammad Reza Ketabchi, second year, University of Nottingham
  • Coordination of meiotic recombination in arabidopsis. Chris Morgan, third year, University of Birmingham
  • An ultrasensitive MEMS for gravity imaging. Richard Middlemiss, third year, University of Glasgow

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This sums up everything that is wrong.

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