CIES New Scholars Committee – 3 Minute Thesis Video Competition

CIES NSC 3 min comp logo

In our inaugural year of the competition (2017), we have received 5 videos based on outstanding research from fellow CIES new and emerging scholars. While the videos will all be showcased on our new scholar Twitter, Facebook, and CIES e-newsletters, we are excited to showcase them here as well. We thank all the scholars for their participation and we wish them the best of luck in the review of their videos. The winner of the awards was announced in January 2017.

All the videos from 2017 are posted online here:

If you are a new or emerging scholar and would also like to have your work showcased on our platforms, please feel free to submit your work to While your video will not be included in the competition this year, we would be thrilled to showcase your work as well.


To further discussions and academic development for all our members, the New Scholars Committee welcomes video submissions from all CIES new scholars starting today.  This knowledge mobilization initiative will share ongoing or completed research (conducted within the past 1-2 years) from our emerging academics and culminate in a selection of three top videos.webpage image

This concise and online video is intended to support new scholars in presenting their emerging or completed research to interested individuals worldwide, such as practitioners, policy makers, educators, and community members who are pressed for time.  It also benefits new scholars who seek a means to increase the impact of their research at an affordable and global scale.

All submitted videos will be posted on our NSC website, Facebook, and Twitter accounts.  The scholars with the top three videos (chosen based on the judging criteria listed below) will be awarded a travel grant to present their 3-minute thesis presentation at the 2017 CIES conference in Atlanta, USA.

If you are a new scholar, we invite you to submit a video!


August-December 2016 Call for video submissions.
December 1, 2016 Submission deadline. All submitted videos will be evaluated.  (You are welcome to submit your video after this date; however, only the videos submitted beforehand will be evaluated.)
January 9, 2017 Top three videos will be announced, with each corresponding scholar receiving a travel grant to attend the conference.  If a recipient of the award is not able to attend the conference, the travel grant will be given to the next ranked scholar.
March 2017 The top three scholars present their research at a reception at the 2017 CIES Conference.  All New Scholars and conference attendees are invited to attend.

Travel grants:

3rd prize winner 200 USD
2nd prize winner 500 USD
1st prize winner 700 USD


  • A single static PowerPoint slide is permitted, as well as slide transitions, animations or ‘movement’ of any description.
  • Sound and video files are permitted.
  • Additional props (e.g. costumes, musical instruments, laboratory equipment) are permitted.
  • Presentations are limited to 3 minutes maximum and competitors exceeding 3 minutes are disqualified.
  • Presentations are to be spoken word (eg. no poems, raps or songs).
  • If the presentation is chosen among the top 3, any narration by the researcher in the submitted video must be shared in-person on the stage.  The on-stage presentation will not include audio from the video and must be presented in English.
  • Presentations are considered to have commenced when a presenter starts their presentation through either movement or speech.
  • The decision of the adjudicating panel is final.
  • All videos should be submitted with a written copy of the audio provided.

To be internationally accessible to all key stakeholders and showcase the international scope of our group, we are welcoming videos from individuals of all abilities and languages. To safeguard for international accessibility, we will post all submitted videos on Vimeo (as other streaming options are not as widely accessible, such as YouTube).  If you submit a video with non-English audio, please submit the text that corresponds to your video in English and in the language of your video.  Text from both languages will be posted online and be inclusive and accessible for all viewers who may have audio-visual needs or where English may not be their first language. Note: All non-English text will be reviewed for content.

Tips for creating the video:

Sample videos for reference:

The sample videos provide reference for the slide design and presentation style you can use.  Illustrated videos, such as some from TEDTalks, are also welcomed.  While the following video is longer than 3 minutes, it shows the level of illustration that you can use in your video:

Note: Should you choose the animation option, you will need to explain the animations in-person at the conference rather than playing the audio from the video.


Every submission should include:

  • A video file (or a link to a video file) that is no longer than 3 minutes in duration. For best video results, consult the Vimeo Compression Guidelines;
  • A written copy of the audio content in English (and a copy of the language of your institution, if the video is not recorded in English);
  • The name of the scholar, the research project, and the affiliated institution;
  • The contact information of each scholar; and
  • Four to six keywords to help us categorize your research.

All items should be submitted to W.Y. Alice Chan at  Any questions about the submission process can be sent there as well.

Judging Criteria:**

Comprehension & Content

  • Did the presentation provide an understanding of the background to the research question being addressed and its significance?
  • Did the presentation clearly describe the key results of the research including conclusions and outcomes?
  • Did the presentation follow a clear and logical sequence?
  • Was the thesis topic, key results and research significance and outcomes communicated in language appropriate to a non-specialist audience?
  • Did the speaker avoid scientific jargon, explain terminology and provide adequate background information to illustrate points?
  • Did the presenter spend adequate time on each element of their presentation – or did they elaborate for too long on one aspect or was the presentation rushed?

Engagement & Communication

  • Did the oration make the audience want to know more?
  • Was the presenter careful not to trivialise or generalise their research?
  • Did the presenter convey enthusiasm for their research?
  • Did the presenter capture and maintain their audience’s attention?
  • Did the speaker have sufficient presence, eye contact (when applicable) and vocal range; maintain a steady pace, and have a confident stance (when applicable)?
  • Did the visual aids enhance the presentation – was it clear, legible, and concise?

The NSC would like to thank the CIES Knowledge Mobilization Committee for making this possible.

*The CIES NSC 3 minute thesis competition is an adaptation of the 3MT competition from The University of Queensland, Australia.  More details about the official 3MT competition is available here:

**The rules and judging criteria have been used and adapted with permission from The University of Queensland.

Image published with permission from Creative Commons.