Q1 - I am a student from a non-technology-related discipline. If I participate in 3MT, will I be disadvantaged when I am competing with students from technology-based disciplines?

No. Adjudicators are invited from both non-technology-related and technology-based disciplines. Media persons are also invited to serve on the adjudicating panel as far as possible. Adjudicators will be briefed about the Judging Criteria of 3MT for all candidates.


Q2 - I am going to submit my thesis early but I will probably submit my "Notice of Intent to Submit a Thesis" after the 3MT this year. Am I eligible to participate in 3MT this year?

As stated in the Eligibility Criteria, PhD/MPhil/PD students who are not in their final year of study but have already submitted the "Notice of Intent to Submit a Thesis" are eligible to register to enter the Competition.

If you cannot meet this requirement but have justifiable reason(s), please contact Knowledge Exchange Office (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) to discuss your case.


Q3 - I am not sure if presenting my thesis at the 3MT may pose an issue on data sensitivity. Should I still participate?

Interested students should discuss with their research supervisors before registering for the Competition. As part of the registration procedures required by the organiser, the primary supervisor must confirm his/her support of the student's participation in the 3MT and that he/she has no objection to the content of the student's presentation. Students without such endorsement by the specified deadline are not allowed to enter the Competition. For further questions on submission of the supervisor's endorsement, please contact Knowledge Exchange Office (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).


Q4 - What if my research supervisor serves on the adjudicating panel? Can I still participate in 3MT?

Yes, you can participate. In such circumstance, your presentation will not be marked by your research supervisor to avoid possible conflict of interest. For example, in parallel heats, you will normally be assigned to present in a heat not adjudicated by your research supervisor. If you become one of the finalists, your research supervisor will not be marking your presentation and your total score will be divided by the total number of judges minus one, before comparing with those of other candidates.


Q5 - Are there any Intellectual Property Rights guidelines that I should be aware of when preparing the 3MT slide?

Due to the nature of the Competition, any data or information presented or discussed in the Competition should be considered information that will likely enter the public domain, for example, in media coverage, in subsequent University publications for the public in print and /or digital formats, and/ or on the University's websites, etc. Interested students should discuss with their research supervisors before registering for the Competition.


Q6 - What is allowed on the candidate's 3MT slide?

One single static PowerPoint slide is permitted. In preparing the slide, remember that "less is more". It does not have to include text. Visual cues are equally, if not more, effective in helping the audience understand your research. However, no slide transitions, animations or "movement" of any kind may be used. Please refer to "Presentation Rules" for details.


Q7 - Do I have to put my personal information on the slide for the adjudicating panel to identify me?

No. At the registration desk on the Competition day, you should show your student card to our staff. You will then be given a name badge with your 3MT candidate number. You should put it on throughout the Competition. Moreover, the organizer will prepare a "title slide" for each candidate including the candidate's name, faculty, degree registered and the presentation title. This "title slide" will appear at the time the candidate is invited onstage to present before his/her own single slide is shown.


Q8 - Can I use a presentation title in layman's language other than my thesis title to facilitate my presentation?

Yes, you can. Please specify your presentation title in layman's language when you submit the finalized slide to the event organizer. No amendments to the slide, including the presentation title, will be accepted after the specified submission deadline.


Q9 - Do I have to use a slide?

No, the slide is optional as the emphasis is on the oration.


Q10 - Can I upload my slide on the Competition day instead of submitting it to the event organizer before the Competition?

No. You must submit your finalized slide in the prescribed format by the specified deadline to facilitate the event management process and to allow level playing field among all candidates. Please note that if you do not submit your slide on time, you will be required to present without the aid of a slide.


Q11 - Can sound or video be used during a presentation?

No additional electronic media (e.g. sound and video files) is permitted during a 3MT presentation. Please refer to "Presentation Rules" for details.


Q12 - Can I use a laser pointer?

Yes, a laser pointer is not considered a prop. However, the emphasis is on the oration. Candidates who need to use a laser pointer should contact the staff on-site for the use of the laser pointer provided by the organizers.


Q13 - Can additional props be used during a presentation?

No additional props (e.g. costumes, musical instruments, laboratory equipment) are permitted during a 3MT presentation. Please refer to "Presentation Rules" for details.


Q14 - Can palm cards or speech notes be referred to during a presentation?

Yes, palm cards and/or speech notes are acceptable; however this option may detract from the delivery of the 3MT and is not recommended.


Q15 - While candidates can't deliver their 3MT as raps or songs, can they quote from a poem or song?

Raps and song lyrics are not permitted to be used to present the entire 3MT. However, quotes from a poem or song, to a limited extent, may be included if they are relevant and very significant to the presenter's thesis topic.


Q16 - Will I be able to see a countdown timer at the Competitions?

Yes, there will be a countdown timer for candidates at the HKU 3MT. If you do not wish to see the countdown timer at the Competition, please contact our on-site staff. There will also be a "30 seconds" board sign raised by our staff at the last 30 seconds of your presentation. Depending on the arrangement of the hosting university, the Asia-Pacific 3MT will likely make a countdown timer available for candidates.


Q17 - What happens if my presentation is longer than 3 minutes?

If a candidate's presentation exceeds 3 minutes, he/she will be automatically disqualified.


Q18 - Can I compete for the People's Choice Award and Online People's Choice Award if I cannot get into the Final Competition?

No, only finalists can compete for these two Awards.

The People's Choice Award will be decided by audience ballot among the finalists at the Final Competition.

All finalists will automatically enter the last part of the Competition on the Online People's Choice Award with their presentations at the Final Competition to be made available on YouTube for online voting. As required by the Graduate School, candidates must agree to make their video clips available online, which is regarded as an integral and essential part of the Competition. Interested students should discuss with their research supervisors if they have doubts on any data sensitivity issues.

The organizers reserve the right to withhold the People's Choice Award and the Online People's Choice Award, as and when considered appropriate. Such a decision will be made in consultation with the chairperson(s) of the adjudicating panel. The organizers' decision will be final and no queries and/or appeals will be entertained.


Q19 - Can I win more than one category of prizes?

Yes, it is possible to win a place (champion, the 1st runner-up or the 2nd runner-up) and win the People's Choice Award as well as the Online People's Choice Award.


Q20 - Is there a dress code?

Business casual attire is suggested. Please be reminded that NO COSTUMES in whatsoever form are allowed. Please refer to the "Presentation Rules" for details.

As the Final Competition will be recorded to produce video clips for voting of the Online People's Choice Award, you may wish to avoid wearing clothes with complicated patterns such as checks, tight/close stripes, herringbones, tweeds and loud plaids, which tend to strobe on camera.


Q21 - What is Asia-Pacific Competition?

The 3MT Competition was launched by The University of Queensland, Australia, in 2008. Enthusiasm for the 3MT concept and its adoption in numerous universities led to the regional Trans-Tasman 3MT Competition, first held at UQ in 2010. In 2016, the Trans-Tasman 3MT Competition was expanded to include a select number of Asian universities and renamed as Asia-Pacific 3MT Competition.

Depending on the arrangements of the organizers of regional/international 3MT competitions, we will again try to arrange for a candidate of the HKU 3MT, who meets the eligibility criteria set by the organizer concerned or hosting institution, to represent HKU at a regional or international 3MT competition. It may be a virtual competition rather than one that is held overseas. In case where the hosting institution or organizer concerned only allows PhD candidates to participate in its competition, the highest ranking PhD candidate may be given the chance to represent the University in that competition.


Q22 - What is the U21 3MT?

Universitas 21 (U21) is the leading global network of research-intensive universities, for which member institutions are comprehensive universities providing a strong quality assurance framework to be the network's activities. Each participating U21 member university will select a local winner who will then be put forward for the U21 Final, to be judged by an international panel consisting of industry and academic professionals. The Grand Final will be a virtual event where video entries rather than live presentations will be judged. For details, please visit here. The HKU representative will be selected among the winners by the Graduate School.



The University of Queensland
The University of Melbourne