Many debaters will have experienced the long wait in the corridor outside the debate venue as the judges inside deliberate on their decision. Then the door will open and a piece of paper gets handed to a runner and the door closes again for 5 minutes. Then when the teams get called in to hear the oral adjudication a second piece of paper gets passed to the runner.

What are those pieces of paper and for anyone planning to adjudicate what do they contain.
October 08, 2007
Oral adjudications occur when the adjudicators call the debaters back into the room to give them the decision and explain the reasons for the decision. Many teams also view this as a valuable lesson on how to improve so judges should put a little thought into their oral adjudications so the teams come away feeling that they understand (if not agree with) the decision and feel they have learned how to correct their mistakes.

The chair of panel should give the decision (unless dissenting). Other judges should stay quite until after the oral adjudication is complete.
October 06, 2007
There are pages and pages of rules and guidelines on how to adjudicate. The best guide is available at : - Guide to chairing and adjudicating a Worlds Debate

However to highlight some key general points of the adjudication process
October 05, 2007
This is a one page summary of the previous tips posts. It's also known as "I don't have time to read all that ****!!!!!!! What do I do?"

The Basics

  • 7 Min Speech use all of it but not longer than 7:30

  • 1st & last min no Points of information allowed

  • Accept 2-3 POI no more.

  • Stay in the debate. Offer lots of POI but at the same time don't overdo it.

  • No props, No bad language, No abusive behaviour
Be Prepared
September 22, 2007
This is concerned with roles on a worlds style debate. For more guidance on speaking roles in other formats follow the links on this article

Prime Minister (Opening Speaker);
September 18, 2007
One thing you are bound to notice at any debate is the different speaking styles used by the competitors. Speaking style is perhaps one of the most difficult aspects of debating to attempt to "teach" as the best style for someone is something that develops naturally over time. However there are a couple of things to be kept in mind.

September 15, 2007
There are different rules for speaking order based on the compeition and style of debate. You would be surprised how such a basic rule can be misunderstood by the participants. I once had a speaker insist on calling the Chief Adjudicator when I refused to allow him make the Prime Ministers Rebuttal speech at the end of Round 1 of a World Championships. The response from the tab room was short and not in his favour. Therefore it is worth touching on some of the different speaking orders so people can see how they vary.

September 14, 2007
You should try to have a structure to your speech. If you do then it is more likely to be a good speech. If you don't have some form of structure you may be penalised by adjudicators and you may ramble. You don't have to use a strict structure just have a mental layout of what you want to say and when. In fact if you have too rigid a structure then you will find it impossible to stick to it, when you have to rebutt and deal with points of information.

September 13, 2007
Points of Information are a vital part of any debate and should not be underestimated. Before and after your speech you can't just sit quietly and enjoy the other speeches. You must keep the adjudicators aware of your presence, ideas and argument. Also P.O.I. can be used as a weapon to undermine, and even destroy, an opponents speech. Also Points of Order and Points of Personal Privilege which are used in some debating formats are not permitted at Worlds/BP

September 12, 2007
Just to let you know that over the next few days I'm going to drip feed the various training and tips handouts into the blog. I'm doing this because I've noticed that a number of people are clicking on the label "Training" and going through all the posts there. I'm going to keep the originals on the main server (as linked on the left). However to "complete" the training section on the blog I'm going to put put the articles in as posts.
September 10, 2007