Three Blind Mice a Success at Three Minute Thesis Competition™
August 7th, 2012
Winthrop Professor Alan Dench, Dean of Graduate Research School, presents Lakshini Weerasekera with her award.
A PhD student from the Western Australia Institute of Medical Research (WAIMR) has won the Judges Choice Runner-Up at The Three Minute Thesis (3MT)™ competition on July 25th.
Lakshini Weerasekera's went up against 10 other semi-finalists at the University of Western Australia with her presentation Three Blind Mice: the story of diabetic eye disease.
The Three Minute Thesis competition™ is a yearly event held across Australian universities.
The competition is an exercise in developing academic and research communication skills for Masters by Research and Doctoral Students.
Entrants must give an engaging presentation on their thesis topic and its significance, in lay language and within a strict 3-minute timeframe, using only one uncluttered PowerPoint slide for assistance.
Animations, sound and video files or any additional props are not permitted and competitors whose presentation exceeds three minutes are disqualified.
Lakshini said the 3MT™ competition is not about winning or losing, but about the experience.
"It was daunting trying to collapse my entire project into 3 minutes. I originally started with a 30 minute presentation and just had to keep cutting it back," Lakshini said.
"This has been a great learning experience and an opportunity to do something different.
"It's not like the stock-standard presentations I am used to giving to the science community. There were very few scientists at the competition so you had to ensure your information was easy to understand," she said.
Lakshini says learning to present research data without scientific terminology will be useful in future demonstrations.
"One important lesson I have learnt from this experience is that you can always adapt something really complicated into information everyone can understand," she said.
Lakshini won a $1,000 travel or research support grant for her presentation.
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