Star trophy standing against a blue background

CEHD students place at Three Minute Thesis event

Two College of Education & Human Development students placed at Georgia State University’s Three Minute Thesis Competition.

As its name suggests, the competition invites graduate students to present their thesis or dissertation topics and their significance in three minutes’ time.

Duke Biber earned first place among the other doctoral student participants and received the People’s Choice Award for the presentation he gave on his dissertation, entitled, “The Effect of a Mindful Self-Compassion Intervention on University Physical Activity Motivation and Behavior.”

“I realized that maintaining regular exercise is difficult for nearly everyone, that we are often too critical of our own behavior and that self-compassion training is an understandable and desired way to improve how we view ourselves,” he said. “One moment of self-compassion can change a person’s day. And I think that is something the audience related to and desired.”

Graduate student Molly Duncan earned second place among master’s student participants for her oration, entitled, “Improve and Repeat: Improving Deaf and Hard of Hearing Children’s Vocabulary Through Conversation.”

“My thesis is about strategies teachers can use in conversations with young deaf and hard-of-hearing children to support the children’s language development,” she explained. “For this competition, I only talked about how deaf and hard of hearing children’s vocabularies grew more across the school year if their teachers repeated child statements with more details or corrected grammar more often.”

Preparing for the Three Minute Thesis event helped Biber and Duncan practice condensing their research into a few key points – a skill they’ll both be able to use with both seasoned researchers and those who aren’t as well-versed in educational research.

“I think this competition was a really good exercise in figuring out what will interest people outside my field and how to communicate my research to them,” Duncan said. “I think those kinds of skills are especially important in education research, because we need to be able to communicate with a lot of different groups of people who will have varying levels of familiarity with – or interest in – the nitty-gritty details of how research works.”