Urban Debate Dragon Invitational

2020 — Washington, Online, DC/US

Judging Information


Every school must bring one experienced judge for every two entries.


This adult should have a professional relationship with the team (teacher, coach, etc.) and you should be willing to take responsibility for their actions and attendance.


The WUDL has a deep bench of experienced, background checked, judges available for hire and will hire additional outside judges if needed.


Please do not hire judges that you do not have a prior professional relationship with. Online debate platforms magnify student protection challenges and that must be our priority. If an adult not affiliated with your program wants to judge for you, tell them to apply to be hired by the tournament.  Those found in violation will forfeit their rounds and be asked to leave the competition.


We value a diverse, balanced judge pool and will keep these criteria in mind when hiring.


If a judge fails to appear on time for a round or acts inappropriately, their school will be fined $100 a round, and their team with the best record will take a forfeit if spare judges aren’t available.


Judges are obligated one round past their elimination of the team that they are affiliated with. Only with permission from the Tournament Director can your judge(s) be released from the above commitments.


In JV CX, student judges, in their senior year of high school are allowed and must be explicitly designated as a student judge in your registration.


Qualifications: We expect that every judge in the Varsity Division has at minimum judged at least 15 rounds on a local circuit in the last few years and offers a complete paradigm via Tabroom for students (and the tournament), describing their argumentative preferences and experience. This should be more than a single sentence or collection of memes.


Judges without paradigms will be dropped, and it will be considered an uncovered judging obligation.


The tournament will offer mutually preferred judging and offer strikes to each entry.


Hired Judge Information


A substantial amount of hired judging will be available ($100/round). The WUDL works with a deep bench of experienced former debaters who live and work in the DMV who are experienced judges, which we will make available for hire. This is not an inexhaustible supply and teams are encouraged to bring at least some of their own judging.


All hired judging requests must be made through the tournament staff (David.Trigaux@urbandebate.org). Only after explicit approval by the Tournament Director will you be allowed to hire judges. Please do not request to hire judging if you will be present at the tournament but not in the judging pool yourself. All hired judge requests must be made no later than 11/4/2020. After this date we cannot guarantee any hired judging requests and you will need to email the tournament directly and make the request.


Do not consider your judging request approved until you receive an email back from the Tournament Director. The tournament would love to hire out any additional rounds your program may have available. Please email the tournament director for more information.


Finally, if you hire a judge but later your entry falls below the necessary number of entries to need that judge, you will still be charged for that judge. It is a financial risk for the tournament to not hold you accountable for these hired judges. We must plan well in advance to hire judges and just because your entries change at the last minute doesn’t solve the fact the tournament has already made arrangements on your part to provide competitive opportunities to your students.


Judge Conduct Guidelines


As an adult member of the debate community you must act as professionally as possible when attending and judging at a tournament. We require that all tournament judges observe the highest standards of professional ethics and be an appropriate role-model in this community.


This means:




·         Be sure that conflicts are accurately entered on Tabroom.com before the tournament starts


·         Review the rules of CX debate, know the community norms (such as about evidence sharing), and be lenient on those new to this level of competition (and the related online transition).


·         Your best to judge the round solely on the arguments made before you and not any pre-conceived notions or information


·         Understand that the topic of Criminal Justice Reform can be very personal for many participants, such as those who have had personal experiences with the criminal justice system. Debate should be a safe space for students to speak their minds and share their experiences.


·         Consider how the digital divide impacts our community.


o   Don’t hold it against a debater who cannot join via video, has connection issues, or other relevant manifestations of the digital divide. Online debate opens new horizons of accessibility and also creates other substantial issues. Let the round be decided on the substance of a student’s arguments, not on their ability to access high speed internet.


Do Not:


·         Tolerate sexist, racist, or other discriminatory acts by participants (or observers). These should be reported to Tab straight away and the round paused.


·         Participate in outside activities while judging. You would want someone giving you their full attention while you spoke, so give these debaters the same respect.


o   I have seen a judge shopping for shoes during a round (and they delayed the round to ask the debater’s opinion of their purchases). Do not be that judge.


·         Be under the influence of drugs, alcohol, or other impairing substances while judging.


·         Don’t post disparaging comments about your rounds on social media during the tournament.