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Phone: (210) 458-4331

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3MT® Research Competition

The Graduate School is proud to host the next generation of research competitions: The Three Minute Thesis (3MT®)! The Final 3MT® Research Competition will be held Thursday April 9, 2020 (9:30 am – 11:30 am) during UTSA’s Graduate Student Appreciation Week in the Retama Auditorium.

3MT® is a competition that provides graduate students the opportunity to showcase their scholarly work or research in 3 minutes or less. Additionally, 3MT® provides a great opportunity for presenters to develop communication skills, share their work with the San Antonio community, as well as open doors to new collaborations and networks, all while competing for cash awards.

Prizes for the Final 3MT® Research Competition include:

  • 1 stPlace ~ $1000
  • 2 ndPlace ~ $750
  • 3 rdPlace ~ $500
  • People’s Choice ~ $200

To be assigned to one of the twenty coveted presentation slots at the Final 3MT® Research Competition, you must be selected during the Preliminary 3MT® Research Competition, which will be held Thursday March 26, 2020 (9:30 am – 11:30 am) in the Retama Auditorium. To participate, register by February 28.

Not sure you’re ready for 3MT®? Not to worry! Those that register will receive 3MT® Bootcamp information from John Shaffer, who leads the Bootcamp and provides information on competition guidelines, agendas for the preliminary and finals round, judging guidelines, and how to optimize your scholarly or research story to create a compelling 3-minute presentation.

Students, postdocs, faculty and staff are welcome to attend as audience for the Final 3MT® Research Competition on Thursday April 9, 2020 (9:30 am – 11:30 am) to cheer on the presenters, and vote for “People’s Choice”. The Preliminary 3MT® Research Competition on Thursday March 26, 2020 (9:30 am – 11:30 am) will be a closed session.

If you are interested in competing , please make sure you are eligible and understand the guidelines:


  • Master’s and Doctoral students are able to compete.
  • Students must be currently enrolled in graduate-level coursework or graduate-level research or dissertation hours.
  • Students must be in good academic standing (3.0 or above)
  • Students must submit their research/presentation topic at the time they register to compete.


  • Presentations are limited to a three-minute maximum. Competitors exceeding three minutes will be disqualified.
  • One single (static) PowerPoint slide is permitted.
  • No sound, video, or additional props can be utilized during the presentation.
  • Index cards or speech notes are allowed.

3MT® will have a preliminary and final competition. Registration for this competition confirms that you are available for both dates and times. You may register by February 28, 2020.

Preliminary 3MT® Research Competition

DATE: Thursday, March 26, 2020
TIME: 9:30 am – 12:30 pm (participants will not be required to stay for the entire time)
LOCATION: Main Campus, Student Union, Retama Auditorium 2.02.02

Final 3MT® Research Competition

DATE: Thursday, April 9, 2020
TIME: 9:30 am – 11:30 am
LOCATION: Main Campus, Student Union, Retama Auditorium 2.02.02

For questions about the 3MT, email John Shaffer,, or call the Graduate School, (210) 458-4331.