Tell It Straight Final 2017

Tell It Straight, the Graduate Studies Office’s annual communication competition, is now in its 5th year and is continuing to attract applicants from across all five DCU faculties. This year’s competition was highly competitive with some excellent submissions covering a wide of topics in areas such as poetry, criminal organisations, Ireland’s legal system and bacterial infections.

The purpose of Tell It Straight is to challenge research students to effectively communicate their research and its potential impact to a non-specialist audience.  This year’s final took place on the 19th of April in the Helix on the Glasnevin Campus and was opened by the President of DCU, Professor Brian MacCraith.  The president highlighted the commitment of the University to developing and showcasing key transferable skills of our graduate researchers, thus, communicating research in a wide variety of formats and to a wide range of audience types.

Fourteen postgraduate research students were shortlisted from across all disciplines in DCU, competing to a very high standard in three categories.



The competition final was well attended by fellow research students, staff, family and friends of the finalists.  All presenters were commended by the judging panel for putting themselves and their research forward in a non-specialist manner to a general audience in what proved to be a very tight competition.

All videos and recordings can be viewed on our YouTube channel here.


This years winners are:

Oral Category 1 (Year 1 Research Students)

  • Winner: Simona Herbaj (Mechanical & Manufacturing Engineering): Sticks and stones may break your bones – but here’s an inGENEous way to fix you!
  • Runner-up: Ellen Howley (English): Atlantic islands and their poetry: comparing the Caribbean and Irish traditions.

Oral Category 2 (Year 2 Research Students and beyond)

  • Winner: David Gaul (Health & Human Performance): Can obesity make you clumsy?
  • Runner-up: Claire O’Connell (Physical Sciences):  Where’s Wally and the search for cancer cells.

Video Category

  • Winner: Amanda Dillon (Theology, Philosophy & Music): Every picture tells a story: A semiotic approach to analysing how images function as interpretations of biblical texts.
  • Runner-up: Gearóidin McEvoy (Law & Government): Equating justice: using minority languages at criminal trials.

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