HNM PhD student winner of Three Minute Thesis

Helen Shallow of the School of Health, Nursing & Midwifery won the final of the University’s Three Minute Thesis (3MT) Competition which was held at Paisley Campus on 24 June 2015.

Helen, who won this award for her presentation of her thesis, ‘Are you listening to me?’, which focuses on women’s experiences of maternity services during labour, picked up a prize of £1,000 to attend a conference of her choosing and will now be put forward to the national Three Minute Thesis competition by Vitae UK.

This is the first time that UWS has taken part in the Three Minute Thesis.

This national and international competition was developed in Australia by Queensland University.

The rules are simple: PhD students have three minutes and one PowerPoint slide to present to an ‘intelligent, lay’ audience and a judging panel. The final of the UWS Three Minute Thesis Competition was contested by Laura Woodland (Media, Culture and Society); Jane Tobias (Science and Sport); Fionn Murphy (Science); Victoria Bianchi (Media, Culture and Society); and the eventual winner Helen Shallow.

The People’s Choice winner, which was selected by the audience, was Fionn Murphy with his presentation, Microplastic Pollution in the Aquatic Environment.

The competition was judged by Professor Rowena Murray, Director of Research, Centre for Research in Education; Professor Milan Radosavljevic, School of Engineering and Computing; Wilma Bain, Head of Education, South Lanarkshire Council; Dr Catriona Tedford, Head of the UWS Graduate School; and Dr Larissa Kempenaar, 3MT Co-ordinator.

Professor Murray said: “The key finding of our first Three-minute Thesis competition is that it benefited our PhD students in a number of ways: some said it helped them achieve clarity in their research, as well as developing their ability to communicate clearly. They all developed excellent presentations. The judges were impressed by the standard of presentations as well as by the 3MT approach itself. This is clearly a great way to engage a range of audiences in research conducted at UWS.”

Dr Larissa Kempenaar, 3MT Co-ordinator, said: “It has been great hearing about the fascinating research that is taking place across the University. 3MT is a great opportunity for PhD students to learn to put their PhD topic in words that anyone will understand. This is a great skill to have in terms of being able to explain to family members, future employers, conference audiences and others what it is they are doing, even though their topic will be very complex.”