Sussex Researcher School

Eligibility, Rules and Judging Criteria


  • Active postgraduate researcher's (PGRs) registered with the University of Sussex who have successfully passed their confirmation milestone (including PGRs whose thesis is under submission) by the date of their first presentation are eligible to participate.
  • PGRs who have already had their viva are not eligible to participate.


  • A single static PowerPoint slide is permitted. No slide transitions, animations or 'movement' of any description are allowed. The slide is to be presented from the beginning of the oration.
  • No additional electronic media (e.g. sound and video files) are permitted.
  • No additional props (e.g. costumes, musical instruments, laboratory equipment) are permitted.
  • Presentations are limited to three (3) minutes maximum and competitors exceeding three (3) minutes are disqualified.
  • Presentations are to be spoken word (eg. no poems, raps or songs).
  • 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.

Judging Criteria

The following criteria will guide the judges' decisions. Each criterion is equally weighted and has an emphasis on audience.

Comprehension and content

  • Presentation provided clear background and significance to the research question
  • Presentation clearly described the research strategy/design and the results/findings of the research
  • Presentation clearly described the conclusions, outcomes and impact of the research

Engagement and communication

  • The oration was delivered clearly, and the language was appropriate for a non-specialist audience
  • The PowerPoint slide was well-defined and enhanced the presentation
  • The presenter conveyed enthusiasm for their research and captured and maintained the audience's attention

Rules and criteria set by the University of Queensland, as of April 2024

Sussex Researcher School