Debate League Rules

Ms. Stolerman -TJ Novice League Preparation 2013-2014
League Events:
 Judge’s Clinic
 Baylor Clinic
 Varsity & JV Tournaments
 Novice Tournaments
Novice Schools should
compete in at least 5
Debates: October -April
School should provide 1
judge for every 2 teams
Host school must
appoint time keepers for
each debate
Ballots & results of a
debate to be revealed at
the end of a tournament!
Novice tournaments take
place after school – 2
rounds (1 Aff/1 Neg)
1st Affirmative
2nd Affirmative
1st Cross-examination
of Affirmative speaker
 2nd Cross-examination
of Affirmative Speaker
 Affirmative Rebuttal
1st Negative
2nd Negative
1st Cross-examination
of Negative speaker
 2nd Cross-examination
of Negative speaker
 Negative Rebuttal
Judge & Time Keeper
The Affirmative chooses an area within the topic
on which they wish to debate.
The Burden of Proof lies with the Affirmative!
1. Demonstrate/show that there is a problem with the
present system
2. Show there is a need for change
3. Show the status quo is not meeting resolving the
AFFIRMATIVE must offer a PLAN to meet these
The Affirmative Plan must adhere to the “5
Pillars” of Debate:
The plan addresses a problem in need
of a solution
The Plan meets the requirements of
the topic within the resolution
The Plan can be executed by available
physical means
The Plan is fully paid for as explained
by a detailed accounting
The plan will solve the given problem
The Affirmative Team MUST support their
assertions with reasonable evidence, which
will determine the quality of their
The Negative must “clash” with the
opponents and argue against the viability of
the Affirmative’s plan and/or assertions.
The Negative may demonstrate that the
present system is working and that there is
no need for a change (defend the status quo).
The Negative must support their assertions
with reasonable evidence, which will
determine the quality of their presentation
A Team can challenge the existence of a quote or
piece of evidence only if they feel it has been
fabricated or grossly distorted.
 The Negative can challenge a definition stated
by the Affirmative only during the 1st Negative
constructive speech.
 Challenges must be made known to the judge as
soon as possible & before the end of the debate.
 The Judge must note the details of the
challenge, including the citation in question, on
the ballot.
A counter plan may not be proposed by
either team at any time!
Definition: alternative to the affirmative’s
plan that is described in the same detail as in
the 2nd Affirmative speech. (Mentioning an
alternative in one sentence is not a counterplan)
Penalty: 0 for the speech in which the
counter-plan is proposed.
A presentable appearance is appropriate when
representing your school.
Boys: suit, sport jacket, dress shirt, sport/dress
trousers, necktie, sport/dress shoes. (Varsity)
Good, neat, and presentable “school clothes” at
JV and Novice level.
Girls: appropriate dress, squirt, or suit
Judges: Should follow the same code as debators
NO: Jeans, sweat suits, sweatshirts, sneakers,
hats, or costumes.
allowed during a debate.
(Calculators, cell phones, computers, etc. )
Penalty: Automatic loss of the round and zero
points awarded for the segment in which the
device was used.
Fiat Power provides that the Affirmative plan
will be adopted provided that the affirmative
team gives convincing arguments for
adoption. It cannot be debated by either
Deduction points for debating Fiat Power will
be left up to the judge’s discretion, but will
not exceed 3 points.
Definition: a frivolous presentation which does not
seriously engage the opposing team in an intelligent
clash of ideas related to the debate theme and whose
primary purpose is to entertain and/or play to the
amusement of the classroom audience.
 If a judge believes a joke debate is taking place, they
must immediately terminate the debate and bring it
to the attention of the coaches present.
 Penalties: automatic loss of round, disqualification of
team’s school from any awards won at that
tournament, disciplinary action by school district
No debater is allowed to act in a rude or overly
intimidating manner. Any debater who exhibits
such behavior will be given an “obnoxious point”
(reduction of team score by 1 point) by the judge.
Must be written on ballot at the point where the
instance occurred.
 5 “obnoxious points” = suspended from next
 If 5th obnoxious point earned in last tournament of
the season, the team’s scores will be disallowed!
In the event of a tie, the Negative Team
Visual Aids are NOT allowed!
Definition: any object that needs to be
present in order for any statement made by
any debater to make sense.
Ex: charts, graphs, flags, pictures, videos,
costumes, songs, dances, etc.
Any attempt to involve the judge/audience
will be seen as a visual aid
Penalty: Loss of debate
Each debater must write their name and ID/#
on the board.
The Affirmative team must write the
resolution (THBT) on the board.
Neither team is allowed to reveal the names
of their schools!!!
1st Aff Constructive
1st Neg cross-x
1st Neg Constructive
1st Aff cross –x
2nd Aff Constructive
2nd Neg cross-x
2nd Neg Constructive
2nd Aff cross-x
Rebuttal Prep Time
Negative Rebuttal
Affirmative Rebuttal
4.5-5.0 minutes
2 minutes
4.0 – 5.0 minutes
2.0 minutes
4.5-5.0 minutes
2.0 minutes
4.0-5.0 minutes
2.0 minutes
3.0 minutes
3.0 minutes
3.0 minutes
= 37 minute Total
5 minutes. If STOP card is held up by the time
keeper, the speaker may finish their sentence at
the pleasure of the judge.
 Judged on merit and one speaker’s defense
under cross-examination
 During the 1st Affirmative, the terms of the
resolution should be defined and a 30 sec outline
of plan must be given.
 No details of the Affirmative’s plan should be
given during the 1st Affirmative constructive.
If the Negative speaker asks for details of the
Affirmative’s plan during the 1st Neg cross-x, the
Affirmative speaker should respond, “My partner
will handle that.”
Negative must show:
1. There is a serious flaw in the Affirmative’s plan.
2. They must negate the Affirmative Team’s
arguments or
3. Prove that the stated need is exaggerated or
non-existent, and that the Affirmative’s plan is
Each member of each teem must give one
constructive speech.
Rapid fire speech is discouraged.
Cross-examiners MUST ASK QUESTIONS
and NOT make statements!
The person being cross-examined may
extend their answer beyond “yes” or “no”.
If a question is asked and the STOP card is
raised by the time keeper, the crossexaminee has a choice to answer or not.
Each member of each team must conduct a
3 minutes preparation time.
Negative Team can choose to “wave” their
time and start their rebuttal immediately
following the 2nd Affirmative crossexamination.
No new arguments may be presented during
any rebuttal. Penalty: no points awarded for
the rebuttal. New evidence, however, is
allowed and encouraged!
No member of their team may approach the
judge for any reason at the conclusion of a
debate round!!!!!
Please See Ms. Stolerman on the designated
date to receive special training!

similar documents