3-Minute Thesis History

Competition History

The Three Minute Thesis (3MT™) is a skills development activity which challenges Research Higher Degree students to explain their research project to a non-specialist audience in just three minutes.  Developed by The University of Queensland (UQ) in 2008, enthusiasm for the 3MT concept and its adoption in numerous universities led to the development of an international competition in 2010.  The competition is now being held all over the world.

Queen’s 3MT History

2012 - Queen’s was the first Ontario University to host the 3MT competition

2013 - Queen’s hosted the inaugural Ontario 3MT competition on April 18th 2013 with our 2 representatives taking on 16 other Ontario universities

2014 - the first National 3MT competition was held

2015 – first time Queen’s has allowed Postdoctoral Fellows to join in

2015 – Cara Yin (Physics) wins National People’s Choice Award

2016 – Anastasia Shavrova (Biology) placed third in the Ontario 3MT

2019 – Amanda Brissenden (Biomedical Engineering) placed third in the Ontario 3MT

2019 – Nevena Martinovic (English Language & Literature) was the runner up in the Matariki 3MT

2020 – Alice Santilli (Computing) placed third in the Ontario 3MT

2020 – Sean Marrs (History) was the winner of the Matariki 3MT

2021 – Samantha Twietmeyer (Political Studies) was runner up in the Matariki 3MT

2022 – Madison Robertson (Health Quality) was runner up in the Matariki 3MT

  • Navjit Gaurav (Rehabilitation Science) was People's Choice in the Matariki 3MT

2023 – Queen’s hosted the Ontario 3MT for a second time

2024 - Julia Tropak (Chemistry) becomes the first Queen's 3MT participant to win the Ontario 3MT competition

2024 Results

First Place - Julia Tropak (Chemistry) - "Bacteria - Friend or Foe?"

Runners Up - Ujjwal Sangwan (Biomedical and Molecular Science) - "Unleashing Cyclosporine A: A game-Changer in the Battle against Dengue Virus?" & Aryaman Sharma (Translational Medicine) - "The Sleeping Giant: Tackling Recurrence in Pediatric Brain Cancer"

People's Choice - Aryaman Sharma (Translational Medicine) - "The Sleeping Giant: Tackling Recurrence in Pediatric Brain Cancer"

Want to see the 2024 presentations for yourself? Check them out here!

3MT 2024 Participants

Finalists 2024 (from left to right): Ujjwal Sangwan (Biomedical & Molecular Science), Sara Stickley (Biomedical & Molecular Sciences), Jiale Xie (Translational Medicine), Amr Zaki (Computing), Samantha Shang (Psychology), Aryaman Sharma (Translational Medicine), Sumaiya Karim (Biomedical Engineering), Claude Bock (Art History), Julia Tropak (Chemistry), William Bonin (Mechanical & Materials Engineering), Sandra McKay (Global Development Studies). Not pictured above is Ariel Lacombe (Art History) who was online.

Judges: Colby Pereira, University Councillor, Alistair MacLean, Retired Association of Queen’s and Professor Emeritus, Department of Psychology, Dr Matthew Evans, Provost and Vice-Principal (Academic)

Emcees: Drs. Chris DeLuca and Tara MacDonald


1st Place: El Zahraa Mahjed, Kinesiology & Health Studies

Runner-Up: Martha Whitfield, Nursing

People's Choice: Annelies Verellen, Art History

Want to see the presentations for yourself? Check them out here!

2023 finalists and judges


From Left to Right - Chris DeLuca (Emcee), Rebecca Hisey (Computing), Mayukh Bagchi (Astrophysics & Astronomy), El Zahraa Majed (Kinesiology & Health Studies), Martha Whitfield (Nursing), Alaa Nousir (Computing), Julia Tropak (Chemistry), April Saleem (Pathology & Molecular Medicine), Surbhi Gupta (Neuroscience), Maram Assi (Computing), Caroline Cotter (Art History), Annelies Verellen (Art History), Sharief Saleh (Electrical & Computer Engineering), Stacey G Kelly (judge-alumnist), Allison Turner (Judge - alumnist), Brandon Tozzo(judge - alumnist)

2022 Results

First Place - Amtul Haq Ayesha (Computing) - " Can your face reveal your heart rate and blood pressure?"

Runner Up - Navjit Gaurav (Rehabilitation Science) - "What Goes Inside a Designer's Mind?"

People's Choice - Navjit Gaurav (Rehabilitation Science) - "What Goes Inside a Designer's Mind?"

Watch the 2022 Finalists Videos

"2022 3MT participants and judges"

From Left to Right: 

Fahim Quadir (Vice Provost and Dean, School of Graduate Studies), Mark Green (Provost and Vice-Principal (Academic)), Navjit Gaurav (Rehabilitation Science), Emily Červenka (Biology), Chloe Robinson (Biology), Madison Robertson (Health Quality), Landon Montag (Neuroscience), Lydia Johnson (Environmental Studies), Jane Mao (Education), Colton Barr (Computing), Sindhura Thirumal (Computing), Bittu George (University Council), Alistair MacLean (Council of the Retirees Association of Queen's)

Above:  Amtul Haq Ayesha (Computing) zoomed in.

2021 Results

First Place - Samantha Twietmeyer (Political Studies) - "Scared of what's behind you - Negotiating a Double Minority Dilemma"

Runner Up - Laura Connolly (Electrical & Computer Engineering) - "Robot-Assisted Surgery: Charting a new road map for cancer treatment"

People's Choice - Quentin Tsang (Translational Medicine) - "Have questions about cannabis: can we really answer patients’ questions?"

Watch the 2021 Finalists Videos

"2021 3MT participants"

Photo of Participants (left to right, top to bottom): Tabatha Rahman (Geography), Salman Ahmadi (Epidemiology), Tessa Krause (Engineering & Applied Physics), Quentin Tsang (Translational Medicine), Natalie Hume (Art History), Laura Connolly (Electrical & Computer Engineering), Claudia Hirtenfelder (Geography), Samantha Twietmeyer (Political Studies), Jessie Reynolds (Biology)

Judges (not in photo): Kofi Adow (University Council), Mark Green, Provost and Vice-Principal (Academic), Sandra den Otter, Vice-Provost (International)

Emcee (not in photo): Dr. Christopher DeLuca, Associate Dean, School of Graduate Studies

2020 Results

First Place - Alice Santilli (Computing) - "Sniffing out Breast Cancer"

Runner Up - Sean Marrs (History) - "City of Spies"

People's Choice - Arthi Chinna Meyyappan (Neuroscience) - " Microbe Therapy and the Gut-Brain Axis - The Future of Personalised Medicine in Psychiatry"

Watch the final videos


"photo of all finalists"


Collage photo of Participants (left to right, top to bottom): Arthi Chinna Meyyappan (Neuroscience), Iman Mashhadi (Electrical and Computer Engineering), Rebecca Stroud-Stasel (Education), Katya Douchant (Biomedical and Molecular Sciences), Sean Marrs (History), Christina Ferrone (Pathology ad Molecular Medicine), Morgan Lehtinen (Chemistry), Alice Santilli (Computing), Alistair Kieruff (Chemistry)

Judges (not in photo): Sophie Kiwala (former MPP for Kingston and the Islands), Tom Howell (CBC radio, Ideas from the Trenches), James Reynolds (Associate Dean, School of Graduate Studies)

Emcee (not in photo): Colette Steer, Manager of Recruitment & Events, School of Graduate Studies

2019 Results

First Place - Amanda Brissenden (Chemical Engineering - Biomedical) - "Building Blocks for a Healthier Spine"

Runner Up - Nevena Martinovic (English Language & Literature) - "Acting Your Age: Gender and Age on the 18th C Stage"

People's Choice - Hannah Dies (Chemical Engineering) - "Building the Future of Sensors: One Nanoparticle at a Time"

Watch the Videos

2019 Finalists

2019 Finalists

Back row (Left to Right): Omid Salari (Electrical & Computer Engineering), Alison Moore (Pathology & Molecular Medicine), Hannah Dies (Chemical Engineering), Mona Kanso (Chemical Engineering), Noor Shakfa (Biomedical & Molecular Sciences), Luissa Vahedi (Public Health)

Front row (Left to Right): Tanya Tran (Psychology), Matteo Zago-Schmitt (Pathology & Molecular Medicine), Nevena Martinovic (English Language & Literature), Abigail Berry (Art History), Nicka Kalaydina (Biomedical & Molecular Sciences), Amanda Brissenden (Chemical Engineering, specialising in Biomedical Engineering)

Judges (not in photo): Daniel Woolf (Principal & Vice-Chancellor), Sophie Kiwala (former MPP for Kingston & the Islands), Mara Shaw (Executive Director of Loving Spoonful), Craig Desjardins (Director of the Office of Strategy, Innovation & Partnerships, City of Kingston).

Emcee (not in photo): Phil Gaudreau (Make it Matter Media).

2018 Results

First Place - Priyanka Gogna (Epidemiology)  - "When Prevention Could be the Cure"

Runner Up - Dhruv Bisaria (Astronomy & Astrophysics) - "Accretion in Old Galaxies – a Piece of the Puzzle"

People's Choice - Priyanka Gogna (Epidemiology)  - "When Prevention Could be the Cure"

Watch the Videos



2018 participants and judges

Back row (Left to Right): Jasmine Buddingh (Chemistry), Frances Wallace (Art History),  Shannon Neville (Biomedical Engineering), Jo-Ellen Worden (Law), James Reynolds (Associate Dean, School of Graduate Studies & Judge), Dhruv Bisaria (Astronomy & Astrophysics), Craig Desjardins (City of Kingston & Judge), Principal Daniel Woolf (Judge), Sawyer Hogenkamp (Education)

Front row (Left to Right): Priyanka Gogna (Epidemiology), Debrah Zemanek (Civil Engineering), Judith Ebegbulem (Chemical Engineering), Isabel Turner (Judge), Kuukuwa Andam (Law), Voila David (Education), Jennifer Williams (Kinesiology & Health Studies) 

Judges: Daniel Woolf (Principal and Vice-Chancellor), James Reynolds (Associate Dean, School of Graduate Studies), Craig Desjardins (City of Kingston), Isabel Turner (Politician and former Mayor of Kingston)

Emcee (not in photo): Julie Brown, CKWS

2017 Results

First Place - Victoria Donovan (Neuroscience) - "Lie Low, Stay Alive"

Runner Up - Amani Ibrahim (Computing) - "Moving Surgical Design Outside the Operating Room"

People's Choice - Victoria Donovan (Neuroscience) - "Lie Low, Stay Alive"

Watch the 2017 Finalists Videos



Back row (Left to Right): Victoria Donovan (Neuroscience), Principal Daniel Woolf (Judge), Brianne Gascho (Art History), Caroline Wallace (Neuroscience), JC Kenny (JCKenny Media, CBC and Judge), Chancellor Jim Leech (Judge), Robert A Wood (8020Info and Judge), Eric Rapos (Computing), Bill Welychka (CKWS and MC)

Front row (Left to Right): Vice Provost & Dean, School of Graduate Studies, Brenda Brouwer, Kassandra Yun (Environmental Studies), Denise Cumming (University Hospitals Kingston Foundation and Judge), Claire Boteler (Math & Stats), Rosanna Brown (Art History), Amani Ibrahim (Computing), Louise de Lannoy (Kinesiology & Health Studies), Deyu Xing (Education)

Judges: Daniel Woolf (Principal and Vice-Chancellor), Jim Leech (Chancellor), Robert A Wood (President & Ceo of 8020Info), JC Kenny (JC Kenny Media & CBC), Denise Cumming (CEO University Hospitals Kingston Foundation)

Emcee: Bill Weylchka, Host and Producer, the Morning Show, CKWS

2016 Results

First Place - Anastasia Shavrova (Biology) - "Strategies on Winning the Game of Life"

Runner Up - Yu Qui Liu (Neuroscience) - "Stimulate My Lobe, Activate My Hope"

People's Choice - Mohamed Al Guindy (Management) - "50 Shades of Blue"

Watch the 2016 Finalists Videos


2016 finalists

Left to Right back row:   Alan Harrison (Judge-Provost & Vice-Principal Academic), Mohamed Al Guindy (Management), Tristan Milne (Mathematics & Statistics), Gemma Bullard (Civil Engineering), Hoda Gharib (Kinesiology & Health Studies), Justin Wong (Pathology & Molecular Medicine), Joshua Alpern (Biology), Andre Brault (Civil Engineering), Daniel Woolf (Judge-Principal & Vice-Chancellor).

Left to Right middle row: Yu Qing Liu (Neuroscience), Anastasia Shavrova (Biology), Chloe Hudson (Psychology), Carey Bidtnes (Judge-Business Development Office, KEDCO), Toby Abramsky (Judge-Vice President, Keystone Property Management).

Left to Right front row: Ernesto Figueiro-Filho (Biomedical & Molecular Sciences – Postdoc), Isabel Macquarie (Sociology), Haito Lan (Civil Engineering)

Judges: Daniel Woolf (Principal and Vice-Chancellor), Alan Harrison (Provost & Vice-Principal Academic), Carey Bidtnes (Business Development Office, KEDCO), Toby Abramsky (Vice President, Keystone Property Management)

Emcee: Chris Whyman, Kingston's Town Crier

2015 Results

First Place - Chenman (Cara) Yin (Engineering and Applied Physics) - "Seeing the World at the Tip of a Laser Beam"

Runner Up - Nicolle Domnik (Physiology) - "A Tale of Two Systems"

People's Choice - Changhai Zhu (Biology) - "Competitive angling tournaments as a sampling tool in fisheries research"

Watch the 2015 Finalist Videos

2015 finalists

Finalists 2015 (Left to Right): Kevser Aktas (Mathematics - Post Doc), Changhai Zhu (Biology), Amy Rentz (Civil Engineering), Oluwatobiloba Moody (Law), Chenman (Cara) Yin (Engineering & Applied Physics), Nicolle Domnik (Physiology, DBMS), Stephane Leahy (Mechanical & Materials Engineering), Michelle North (DBMS - Post Doc), Valeria Li (Geological Sciences), Evelyn Popiel (Biology)

Judges:  Daniel Woolf (Principal & Vice-Chancellor), Toby Abramsky ((Vice President, Keystone Property Management), Ann Lukits (Wall Street Journal columnist), Ken Stevens (Dupont Canada Research & Business Development Centre in Kingston)

Emcee: Chris Whyman, Kingston's Town Crier

2014 Results

First Place - Mike Best (Psychology) - "Neurophysiological biases towards people with Schizophrenia"

Runner Up - Mary Chaktsiris (History) - "A Canadian History of WWI: The unfinished story"

People's Choice - Sima Zakani (Mechanical & Material Engineering) - "Engineered hips: reality or myth?"

Watch 2014 Finalists Videos



204 Finalists

Finalists 2014 (Left to Right): Mike Best (Psychology), Mary Chaktsiris (History), Jasmin Ma (Kinesiology & Health Studies), Sanchari Sur (Gender Studies), Michelle van der Pouw Kraan (Geological Engineering), Sima Zakani (Mechanical & Materials Engineering), Paul Vernon (Education), Hayley Roberts (Biology), Joshua Alpern ( Biology), Lorraine Van Zon (Education)

Judges: Hon Peter Milliken, p.C (Lawyer and politician), Ann Lukits (Wall Street Journal columnist), Michel Pharand ( Queen’s Disraeli Project Editor), Anne Vivian-Scott (President & CEO, BKIN Technologies), Dr. Steven Liss (VP Research)

Emcee: Buzz Collins – CKWS FM (hits 104.3)

2013 Results

First Place - Xiaoqian Liu (Education) - "Grade: an Indicator More Than Achievement?"

Runner Up - Ryley Beddoe (Civil Engineering) - " Landslides today, lives saved tomorrow"

People's Choice - Alaa al-Helaili (Physiology) - "CysLT2Rs a New Avenue Towards Weight Loss"

Watch the 2013 Finalist Videos


2013 finalists

Finalists 2013 (Left to Right): Haroon Malik (Computing), Laurelle Veloce (Physics), Rana Pishva (Psychology), Ryley Beddoe (Civil Engineering), Xiaoqian Liu (Education), Heather Ridgway (Rehabilitation Science), Sharief Oteafy (Computing), Jasmin Ma (Kinesiology & Health Studies), Frank Secretain (Mechanical & Materials Engineering), Alaa al-Helaili (Physiology), Mitchell Anderson (Physics),  Joel Roediger (Astrophysics), Nida Latif (Psychology)

Judges:  Daniel Woolf (Principal and Vice-Chancellor), Hon Peter Milliken, P.C., Dr. Steven Liss (VP Research), Ann Lukits (Journalist), Linda Ann Daly (Council member of the Transitional College of Registered Psychotherapists and Registered Mental Health Therapists of Ontario).

2012 Results

First Place - Jennifer Campbell (Engineering Physics) - "Nanocantilevers: A New Tool for Medical Diagnostics"

Runner Up - Anne McKellar (Biology) - "How will climate change affect migratory birds?"

People's Choice - Jennifer Campbell (Engineering Physics) - "Nanocantilevers: A New Tool for Medical Diagnostics"

Watch the 2012 Finalists Videos

In order starts at: Jun Liu (10 sec), Charla Gray (3:12), Jennifer Campbell (6:05), James MacLeod (9:10), Ann McKellar (11:57), Brandon Tozzo (14:45), Dana Knarr (17:14), Sylvia Bawa (20:15), Xu Han (23:12)

2012 Finalists

Finalists 2012 (Left to Right): Brandon Tozzo (Political Studies), Jun Liu (Biology), James MacLeod (Pathology & Molecular Medicine), Dana Knarr (Education), Charla Gray (Rehabilitation Science), Sylvia Bawa (Sociology), Ann McKellar (Biology), Jennifer Campbell (Engineering Physics) & Xu Han (Biology)

Judges: Bhavana Varma (President, Unites Way KFL & A), Peter Milliken (Queen's Arts 68, former MP), Daniel Woof (Principal and Vice-Chancellor)

Emcee: Dr. Sandra den Otter, Associate Dean, School of Graduate Studies