Santa Clara U Philalethic Invitational

2019 — Santa Clara, CA, CA/US

Most Updated as of - Mar 13, 2019

Santa Clara University

Philalethic Debating Society Invitational Tournament

Invitational Speech and Debate Tournament

Friday-Sunday, March 29-31, 2019


Parli Topics:


All attendees, please read this message regarding the Benson Center this weekend. We ask all students, coaches, and judges to not enter the Benson Center at all this weekend.


Dear Coach:

Santa Clara University Philalethic Debating Society invites you and your squad to our annual Invitational Speech and Debate Tournament to be held on Friday to Sunday, March 29-31, 2019. In order to end a reasonable hour, we have adjusted the tournament schedule to model the schedule of the Fall Tournament. The tournament is designed to foster interscholastic communication and reasoning activities outside the classroom in a supportive, educational atmosphere.  Middle schools, after school progrd home schoolers are very welcome to attend and compete fully in the tournament 

Debate will have 5 preliminary rounds. All individual events and debate formats will have a Novice and Open Division.

We will use the March/April LD topics, and the March AND April Public Forum topics. Choose accordingly.

Parliamentary debate will be given one topic per flight per round. All Individual Events will be combined into one pattern.  Double entries in Events are allowed.  We will offer two divisions of Student Congress.

Web Based Entry Procedures:

Entries will only be accepted on-line at tabroom.comIt will take you a few minutes to set up your school's account, but once that is done the system is a breeze.  Plus, the system will enter all your judges and competitors - so when you enter the next tournament that uses this system you will not have to type the judges and competitors names again. 

You can enter new entries until March 20th. You will also be able to make changes to your entry up to noon Wednesday, March 27, 2019 with no additional fees. To enter go to If you are new to the online system, you will need to first "Set up a new account" for your school.  After the account is set up, go to "View Tournament Calendar" and it will let you click on "Entry." Please note that high school tournaments and college tournaments are separated.  

Please contact me at if you cannot get the website to accept or change your entries.


Judge hire requests must be entered by Wednesday, March 20, 2019 or you will be charged for missing judges. Schools are required to provide at least 50% of their judging commitment, meaning you cannot buy out of more than 50% of your judging requirement.

As of noon Wednesday, March 27 2019, fees will be set.  Please note that drops after fees assessment will be charged.  There is a fee computation sheet to figure out how much you will owe at registration.  Changes or drops after Wednesday, March 27, 2019 will be charged a $10 nuisance fee.


All space in debate and events will be allocated on a first come, first served basis; register early. We will also be implementing caps. Each school will be allowed 4 entries per event per division, policy will have a cap of 5. Entries past the cap will be waitlisted and will be moved into the tournament if space is available.  TBA entries must have names by Friday, March 15, 2019. After this date, TBA entries will be placed on the waitlist and will not be moved into the tournament. 


Schools should bring qualified judges. One judge for every two debate teams (Parli or Policy); four Public Forum teams/ four Lincoln Douglas debaters/duo entries or five event entries/every 8 Congress entries in each pattern. Schools will be required to fulfill at least 50% of their judging obligation, otherwise their entry may be reduced. Please call if you have questions about your judging requirements.

Schools will pay a judging penalty fee per event slot, Congress entry, Lincoln Douglas/Duo Interp or debate team not covered by school judges. We will allow senior high school debaters to judge novice division debate only.  Judge names must be posted by March 29, 2017 or we will assume you are not bringing judges and penalties accordingly will be assessed.



____ School fee X 1 = $50 

____ number of Event entries /Congress entered X $20= _____

____ number of Parli/Public Forum/ Policy entered X $60 = _____

____ number of LD X $50 = _____


Judge Penalties

____ Event entries/Congress/Duos uncovered X $30 = _____

____ Public Forum/ L-D/ uncovered X $75 = _____

____ Policy/Parli Teams uncovered X $100 = _____


Total Fees = ____________ 

Please make checks payable to "Santa Clara Debate".

C/o Communication Dept., SCU, 500 El Camino Real, Santa Clara, CA 95053



L/D Debate: March/April Topics

2018-2019 Policy Debate Topic

Public Forum: March OR April Topics

Parli: One topic will be announced for each flight of each round.  



Novice and Open Division in Debate, Congress and Events.   Novice is normally defined as the first year of competition in high school and second year in middle school if they have not advanced to elimination rounds at a tournament.



Debate Pattern: Policy, Parliamentary, Public Forum and Lincoln-Douglas Debate plus Congress.

Events Pattern: Extemporaneous/Dramatic Interpretation /Expository/Original Prose Poetry / Oratorical Interpretation/ Impromptu /Persuasive /Humorous Interpretation/Thematic Interpretation (POI) and Duo Interpretation.



SCU Debate reserves the right to reject part or whole registration due to space considerations. The tournament will consist of five preliminary debate rounds and the three preliminary rounds of events.   All divisions will receive awards.  We reserve the right to combine divisions if the entry warrants.  Sorry, we don’t do sweepstakes awards for the Spring Tournament.  


Individual Events Rules:

Students may double enter in Events.  Generally we use CHSSA rules but not in all cases.  Exceptions include: Original Oratory will include both advocacy and other "persuasive" speeches. Extemp is combined national and international.

Semifinals will be held in individual events with 5 or more sections/panels or at the discretion of the tournament director. Under subscribed events may waive finals. 


Debate Rules:

We will accept hybrid teams in debate.  We do not accept single person ("maverick") teams. Team debate must be two person. Brackets will be broken to avoid teams from the same school hitting each other. 

Debate will hold octofinals if entry warrants in that division.  Varsity and novice debate events will go to Double octos if entry warrants. There are speaker awards in team debate events only.

Sides will be assigned in Public Forum, and aff will speak first. Coin flips will only be used when teams are not sidelocked in elims, and coin flips will only determine sides, not speaking order, meaning aff/Pro will always speak first.  


Computers are allowed in Extemp Prep, LD, Public Forum, Policy Debate and preparation for Parliamentary Debate prep.  Computers are not allowed during the speaking time in Parliamentary Debate.


Congress Rules:

Congress will have open and novice division.  Please designate the PO's with a 'po' for every five entries.  PO’s should emailed to me at Congress bills are posted at the bottom of this text. Congress judges should be entered into the Congress judge category. 

2019 Spring Invitational Speech & Debate Tourney


(Please note that parking is $8 cash on Friday before 8pm; Free on Saturday & Sunday. There is also free street parking nearby)    Directions to SCU can be obtained from


Friday, March 29, 2018

3pm-5pm   Fees Paid - Daly Science Bldg. Room 206

5pm-7pm   Round I Debate LD/Policy/Parli/PF

7pm-9pm   Round II  Debate LD/Policy/Parli/PF


Saturday, March 30, 2019

7am-8am  Final Registration – IE only schools - Daly Science Room 106

8am-10am  Rd III Debate LD and Policy/Parli (Open Topic Announce @ 8:00 AM, Novice Topic Announce @ 8:45 AM) and PoFo /Congress Rd 1 (Bills 1-2)*

10am-Noon  Round I  Events

Noon-2pm  Rd IV Debate LD and Policy/ Parli (Open Topic Announce @ 12:00 PM, Novice Topic Announce @ 12:45 PM) and PoFo / Congress Round 2 (Bills 3-4)*

2pm - 4pm Round II Events

4pm - 6pm Round V Debate  LD and Policy/Parli (Open Topic Announce @ 4:00 PM, Novice Topic Announce @ 4:45 PM)and PoFo/ Congress Rd 3 (Bills 5-6)*

6pm - 8pm  Round III Events

8pm -10pm Elim 1 of Debate - Novice and Varsity

10pm Events Breaks


Sunday, March 31, 2019

8:30am-10am   Events Semifinals / Congress Semifinals (Bills 7-8)*   

10am-Noon  Elim 2 of Debate - Novice and Varsity

Noon - 2pm    Events Finals 

2pm-4pm   Elim 3 of Debate / Congress Finals (Bills 9-10)*

4pm - 5pm  Awards  Daly Science 207

5pm - 7pm  Elim 4 of Debate (for events that need it)

7pm - 9pm  Elim 5 of Debate (for events that need it)