Andrew Halverson ParadigmLast changed 8/21 6:39P CDT
Name: Andrew Halverson
School: Wichita East High School (Wichita, KS), Assistant Director of Speech & Debate
Experience: 20+ years. As a competitor, 4 years in high school and 3 years in college @ Fort Hays and Wichita State.
Changed as of 8/21/2020
This is the first time in a long time that I have engaged in rewriting my judging paradigm. I thought it was warranted – given that debates and performances will be all done virtually in the immediate future. My last iteration of one of these might have been too long, so I will attempt to be as brief as possible.
**I want to be on the email chain (halverson.andrew [at] gmail.com). Don’t send your speech doc after your speech. Do it before (unless there are extra cards read, etc.). There are a few reasons I would like this to happen: a) I'm checking as you are going along if you are clipping; b) since I am reading along, I'm making note of what is said in your evidence to see if it becomes an issue in the debate OR a part of my decision – most tournaments put a heavy premium on quick decisions, so having that to look at before just makes the trains run on-time and that makes the powers that be happy; c) because I'm checking your scholarship, it allows for me to make more specific comments about your evidence and how you are deploying it within a particular debate. If you refuse to email or flash before your speech for me, there will probably be consequences in terms of speaker points and anything else I determine to be relevant - since I'm the ultimate arbiter of my ballot in the debate which I'm judging.
**Send your analytics as much as possible. This platform for debate can sometimes be problematic with technical issues that can or can’t be controlled. I’ve judged some debate where the 2nc is in the middle of giving their speech and then their feed becomes frozen. Of course, we pause the debate until we can resolve the technical issues, but it’s helpful for everyone involved to have a doc to know where the debate stopped so we can pick up at that point once we resume.
**Don’t go super-duper, mega, ultra full speed (unless you are crystal bell clear). Slowing down a bit in this format is more beneficial to you and everyone else involved.
**For all of those Kansas traditional teams, yes to a off-time road map. Don’t make it harder than it needs to be.
**Be nice & have fun. If you don’t be nice, then you probably won’t like how I remedy if you aren’t nice. Racist and sexist language/behavior will not be tolerated. Debate is supposed to be a space where we get to get to test ideas in a safe environment.
**Stealing prep time. Don’t do it. After you send out the doc, you should have an idea of a speech order and be getting set to speak. Don't be super unorganized and take another 2-3 minutes to just stand up there getting stuff together. I don't mind taking a bit to get yourself together, but I find that debaters are abusing that now. When I judge by myself, I'm usually laid back about using the restroom, but I strongly suggest that you consider the other people in a paneled debate - not doing things like stopping prep and then going to the bathroom before you start to speak. I get emergencies, but this practice is really shady. Bottom-line: if you're stealing prep, I'll call you on it out loud and start the timer.
**Disclosure is something I can't stand when it's done wrong. If proper disclosure doesn't happen before a round, I'm way more likely to vote on a disclosure argument in this setting. If you have questions about my views on disclosure, please ask them before the debate occurs - so you know where you stand. Otherwise, I can easily vote on a disclosure argument. This whole “gotcha” thing with arguments that you have already read is so dumb.
**New in the 2nc is bad. What I mean by that is whole new DA's read - old school style - in the 2nc does not foster good debate OR only read off-case in the 1nc and then decide to read all new case arguments in the 2nc. I'm willing to listen to theory arguments on the matter (and have probably become way more AFF leaning on the theory justification of why new in the 2nc is bad), BUT they have to be impacted out. However, that's not the best answer to a NEG attempting this strategy. The best answer is for the 1ar to quickly straight turn whatever that argument is and then move on. Debaters that straight turn will be rewarded. Debaters that do new in the 2nc will either lose because of a theory argument or have their speaks tanked by me.
Now that’s out of the way, here are some insights on how I evaluate debates:
**What kind of argument and general preferences do I have? I will listen to everything and anything from either side of the debate. You can be a critical team or a straight-up team. It doesn’t matter to me. An argument is an argument. Answering arguments with good arguments is probably a good idea, if the competitive aspect of policy debate is important to you at all. If you need some examples: Wipeout? Sure, did it myself. Affirmatives without a plan? Did that too. Spark? You bet. Specific links are great, obviously. Of course, I prefer offense over defense too. I don’t believe that tabula rasa exists, but I do try to not have preconceived notions about arguments. Yet we all know this isn’t possible. If I ultimately have to do so, I will default to policymaker to make my decision easier for me
**Don't debate off a script. Yes, blocks are nice. I like when debaters have blocks. They make answering arguments easier. HOWEVER, if you just read off your script going for whatever argument, I'm not going to be happy. Typically, this style of debate involves some clash and large portions of just being unresponsive to the other team's claims. More than likely, you are reading some prepared oration at a million miles per hour and expect me to write down every word. Guess what? I can't. In fact, there is not a judge in the world that can accomplish that feat. So use blocks, but be responsive to what's going on in the debate.
**Blippy theory debates really irk me. To paraphrase Mike Harris: if you are going as fast as possible on a theory debate at the end of a page and then start the next page with more theory, I'm going to inevitably miss some of it. Whether I flow on paper or on my computer, it takes a second for me to switch pages and get to the place you want me to be on the flow. Slow down a little bit when you want to go for theory - especially if you think it can be a round-winner. I promise you it'll be worth it for you in the end.
**I’m a decent flow, but I wouldn’t go completely crazy. That being said, I’m one of those critics (and I was the same way as a debater) that will attempt to write down almost everything you say as long as you make a valiant attempt to be clear. Super long overviews that aren't flowable make no sense to me. In other words, make what you say translate into what you want me to write down. I will not say or yell if you aren’t clear. You probably can figure it out – from my non-verbals – if you aren’t clear and if I’m not getting it. I will not say/yell "clear" and the debate will most definitely be impacted adversely for you. If I don’t “get it,” it’s probably your job to articulate/explain it to me.
**I want to make this abundantly clear. I won't do work for you unless the debate is completely messed up and I have to do some things to clean up the debate and write a ballot. So, if you drop a Perm, but have answers elsewhere that would answer it, unless you have made that cross-application I won't apply that for you. The debater answering said Perm needs to make the cross-application/answer(s) on their own.
Contact me if you have any questions. Hope this finds you well and healthy - have a great season!!