Judges' Instructions

INSTRUCTIONS FOR JUDGES

The Debating Forum is a form of parliamentary style debating divided into three parts; the constructive speech; cross-examination; and the rebuttal.  It consists of a series of formal spoken arguments between two teams, which are “for” or “against” a definite proposition statement.

I   FORMAT

A)   Constructive Speech

The constructive speech is a speech to convince.  It should include numerous facts, statistics, comparisons, examples and testimony to support the team’s stand “for” or “against” the proposition.
The AFFIRMATIVE SIDE must prove that the proposition is needed, practical and desirable.
The NEGATIVE SIDE should attack and attempt to destroy the affirmatives’ issues and arguments.  The negative side should clear reasons for disagreeing with the proposition.

B)   Cross-Examination

Cross-examination by an opponent occurs after he/she has given the constructive speech.
See the “Evaluation” and “Order of Speaking” forms attached for the order of the speaker.
The QUESTIONER controls the questioning of the RESPONDENT.  He/she asks clear, well-developed questions in order to clarify or challenge the respondent’s testimony given in the constructive speech.
The RESPONDENT, answering the question, should respond clearly and specifically and reveal a solid understanding of the issues.

C)   Rebuttal

The rebuttal provides each debater with an opportunity to summarize the major points of his/her arguments and oppose or contradict, with evidence or proof, of the weakness of the opposition team’s arguments.  You may not enter new material at this time.

II   PRESENTATION STYLE

A debater is marked on his/her ability to inform and explain in very clear, concise terms his/her point of view.  Speech must be audible, expressive, informative, accurate and convincing to receive full credit.

III   HECKLING

Judges may deduct up to 5 points for heckling at the bottom of a debater’s evaluation column.

IV   ORDER OF SPEAKING, TIME MANAGEMENT

The speaker will look after the order of all presentations and time lines.  There is no time penalty for the length of a debater’s speech or response to a question.  Debaters are encouraged to use up to the maximum time allowed in order to score more points on the information presented.

V   EVALUATION FORM

The number and/or a number and letter the order of speaking.
Please mark a score in the appropriate box for each section as the debate progresses.
At the conclusion of the debate, add up each debater’s total score and team total score.
Subtract any points for heckling.

V   JUDGE’S RECESS

At the end of the debate, the judge(s) may wish to retire to a quiet room in order to confer and average team scores.  The team with the highest average score wins the debate.

VI   THE DECISION

One judge presents the final average scores of each team beginning with the negative side.
The judge(s) are encouraged to offer praise and constructive criticism

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