Graduate Students Sum Up Research in Three Minutes

Students compete in inaugural 3MT Competition for a chance to attend the SEC finals

Winners of the 3 minute thesis competition include, left to right, Terri Hovius, Amanda Waters, Grand Prize winner Harish Chander, Michael Keating, Dean of the Graduate School John Kiss, and William Fennell.

OXFORD, Miss. – A University of Mississippi doctoral student has earned the opportunity to represent the university in the Southeastern Conference Three Minute Thesis competition next spring.

Harish Chander, a doctoral student in the health and kinesiology program, was awarded the grand prize based upon the presentation of his thesis research about the “Impact on Balance While Walking in Occupational Footwear.”

The Three Minute Thesis, or 3MT, is a competition that includes both master’s and doctoral students. The competition is based on the students’ abilities to communicate their thesis research. Each student is given just three minutes and the use of one PowerPoint slide to present the significance of their research thesis topic.

Through the 3MT competition, students develop research communication skills by explaining their research to a non-specialist audience.

Many contestants, including Amanda Waters, a student in the Doctor of Pharmacognosy program, found it to be very beneficial.

“It was a wonderful experience to step back and take a critical look at my research and attempt to convey the essence of the past four years of my academic life into something an audience can understand and appreciate in just three minutes,” she said.Participants could enter into one of four topical areas: “Arts and Humanities,” “Social and Behavioral Sciences,” “Physical, Mathematical and Computational Science and Engineering” and “Life and Biomedical Sciences and Biomedical/Chemical Engineering.”

The competition awarded one second place master’s-level participant, two second place doctoral participants, one master’s-level and one doctoral winner, as well as one grand prize winner.

The master’s-level winner was William Fennell, a student in the Master of Criminal Justice program, for his thesis presentation on “Social Disorganization Theory and Rule Violations in University Residence Halls.” Waters won the doctoral level for her presentation on “Karlodinium veneficum: Ecological Disaster or Pharmaceutical Savior.”

The master’s-level second place participant was Michael Keating, a student in the Master of Biological Sciences program, for his thesis on “Are Places Increasing Methane Emissions From Wetlands?” The two second place doctoral participants were Terri Hovious, a student in the Doctor of Elementary Education program, for her research on “Exploring the Efficiency of Function Behavior Assessments and Behavior Plans Developed for Students with ODD and ADHD” and Bridget Piculell, a student in the Doctor of Biological Science program, for her research of “Trait Correlations in Loblolly Pine.”

For more information about the 3MT competition, visit