Last changed on
Sun May 1, 2022 at 9:23 AM CDT
I am primarily a policy coach/judge, but do have experience with LD and PF. I have been judging for more than 15 years and have judged on the UIL, TFA, and NSDA circuits.
In CX, I consider myself to be a policymaker judge, but what it comes down to is that the debater that convinces me is the debater that is going to get my vote. This means that I am looking for strong evidence as well as good analysis. I am looking for arguments that make sense. I am looking for cases that not only prove their own points but counter the opponent's points, as well. I strive to start the round with no preconceived notions. I want to see strong framework and strong impact calcs.
Do not make the mistake of presenting your case without arguing your opponent's. Yes, I am repeating that statement. It bears repeating.
Speed is ok, but at the end of the day, I still like to hear good speaking. If I cannot understand what you are saying, then your speaking habits are not showcasing what you should be doing. I would rather hear fewer quality arguments than to have so much crammed into your time that I am unable to see clearly how it all works together.
While I do not judge as much LD as I do CX, my paradigm remains much the same. I like very structured speeches with clear signposting, clear organization, and delineation between arguments. I want to see evidence early in the round but more analysis as the round progresses. Make sure that your Value and Criterion are strong and show me why I should vote on those - and back that up with what you are presenting with your evidence and analysis.
In Congress, it is important that you are active in the session. I know it becomes a game to see who can get the most speeches in, but unless they are quality speeches, it's going to backfire. Speeches should be quality speeches. And on that note, while I know it is super easy to read straight from notes while competing virtually, I don't like it and will not score a speech high if you are reading straight from your paper. Evidence is important and I want to hear sources. You should have at least one, and preferably two, sources per point. Once the initial speeches are made, it is vital that new arguments to keep things fresh and to promote clash are essential. The PO should have control of the chamber and be confident in his or her style and movements. A good PO will keep things flowing without stifling competitors and will manage to get an optimal number of speakers in. '
In IEs, I look for poise and confidence, good speaking style, strong movements and posture. In INF and OO, as well as extemp, quality evidence is essential but should flow seamlessly with the information. In all events, including interp, I would like to see you far enough away from the camera that movement is natural and not distracting. In OO and INF, as well as in interp, I would like to see a connection to society and/or to your own experiences. For me, the best pieces do both.
In interp, intros should be casual and conversational. Tell me why your topic is important, even in HI. What is the connection to society? To yourself? Blocking, movement, and bookwork (POI) should be natural and not distracting. Characters should be distinct and recognizable, vocally and physically. I don't mind the use of curse words, but do want to see pieces that are true to the author's intent.