Quest Sandel Paradigm

Last changed 20 July 2021 6:30 AM PDT for any and all questions. Please CC your coach if you reach out with a question.


I am the Founder/Camp Director/Co Owner at Ascend Speech & Debate, Director of Congressional Debate at James Logan High School, and former Director of Speech and Debate at John F. Kennedy High School in Sacramento, California.

First off, I believe this is a debate event before anything. That means you should be adapting to the round as it goes. Everyone from the sponsor to the closer has an equal shot at getting my one as long as they do their job. The job for the sponsor and first negative speaker is to set up the round for strong debate. The sponsor should state the problem, how this bill fixes the problem, give one or two impacts from solving it, and if you're a superstar give me a framework. The first negative should give us the main idea of what we should expect from a strong negation argument. This should take the problem the sponsor laid out and then give us the negative thought process on if this legislation fixes it. After that I should see an increasing amount of refutations and original arguments as to why this legislation is good or bad. Once we are 3/4 of the way through I should be seeing a lot of extensions as the debate is coming to an end. Still give an original POV but keep it within the frame of the debate. Lastly, I should see nothing but refutation and crystalized speeches. Once again I want your own original analysis but use it to end the debate through a refutation of the other side instead of individuals. (Side note: I love aggressive refutations)

Effective cross examination is when you attack your opponents arguments and shut them down. You can use your argument to help you with that but I hate seeing someone just ask questions to set up their arguments even if it doesn't have ANYTHING to do with the speech their opponent just gave. Defense in cross x is a little more straightforward because all I want to see is that you can defend your argument to the point where it is still standing strong after cross x. Overall, I tune out when both sides start over talking each other and I prefer calmer cross x over yelling.

When it comes to speaking I don't have a preferred style. I can respect all styles as long as it suits you. Picking a speaking style is like picking a batting stance in that there isn't a wrong way as long as you're doing what is best for you based on your natural voice, range, and variation. If you stick to that then I'll probably think you're a great speaker.

I do rank presiding officers pretty well as a scorer and if I'm a parli it can serve as a tie breaker between two kids that I'm picking between. As long as you do it well then it'll boost you but if you don't then it'll drop you pretty far.

This next part should go without saying but your arguments need to be backed by evidence at all times and have clear logic behind them. If they don't meet this criteria dont run them because I'll ignore them.

Lastly, be respectful and have fun. If you aren't having fun then you're doing this activity wrong. I can't wait to see y'all in round!!!

Full Judging Record

Tournament Lv Date Ev Rd Aff Neg Vote Result
National Speech and Debate Tournament HS 2019-06-17 SEN Semi 1