PHSSL District 9 Tournament at Danville

2016 — PA/US

Elizabeth Anderson Paradigm

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Kathi Bates Paradigm

LD is first and foremost a debate based on philosophy. It is not policy.  Value and criterion are more than just buzzwords at the opening of the speech. Contentions should link back to the value and should be rooted in that philosophy. Good communication is a part of LD. Give vocal emphasis to the parts of your speech your want me to pay attention to. Tag your contentions clearly. Speak slowly enough that I can absorb the argument thoughtfully.

LD conventions and decorum matter. Expect to stand during speeches and cross-examinations. Dress appropriately. Wait until everyone is ready before speaking. Address the judge during cross-examination. Be respectful and attentive to your opponent. If you have scorn for their arguments, choke it down. Ignoring LD conventions shows a lack of respect for everyone in the room, and the activity itself.

I expect good coverage, though I will not vote on unrefuted arguments if they don't come up in the round.

I am wary of intimidation techniques used on opponents. You should win the round on the strength of your arguments, not how much you are able to freak out your opponent.

I prefer to vote on which value structure is better upheld. 

I don't respond well to quizzes about how much LD jargon I know. Be clear, be nice, be respectful.

Reading a card/evidence is not an argument. Saying "cross-apply" is not an argument. I will not fill in analysis for you.

I expect crystallization (clear voters) at the end of a round.

Kerry Bocko Paradigm

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Phil Burrell Paradigm

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Ed Clarke Paradigm

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Dan Delgado Paradigm

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Katie Gaugler Paradigm

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Ingrid Howard Paradigm

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Julie Larnard-Newbury Paradigm

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Deb Parker Paradigm

Delivery does not weigh heavily in my decision-making, unless your speed/style becomes an impediment to understanding.

Good communication is a part of LD. Give vocal emphasis to the parts of your speech your want me to pay attention to. Tag your contentions clearly. It is YOUR burden to be clear, not my burden to untangle your lack of clarity. If you want to go fast and read card after card with no analysis, you may do that--but accept the fact that you are not a model of good communication, and I will almost certainly miss important parts of your argument, which is your fault.

LD conventions and decorum matter. Expect to stand during speeches and cross-examinations. Dress appropriately. Wait until everyone is ready before speaking. Address the judge during cross-examination. Be respectful and attentive to your opponent. If you have scorn for their arguments, choke it down. Ignoring LD conventions shows a lack of respect for everyone in the room, and the activity itself.

I expect good coverage, though I will not vote on unrefuted arguments if they don't come up in the round.

I am wary of intimidation techniques used on opponents. You should win the round on the strength of your arguments, not how much you are able to freak out your opponent.

I prefer to vote on which value structure is better upheld. 

I don't respond well to quizzes about how much LD jargon I know. Be clear, be nice, be respectful.

Reading a card/evidence is not an argument. Saying "cross-apply" is not an argument. I will not fill in analysis for you.

I expect crystallization (clear voters) at the end of a round.

Jen Rand Paradigm

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Jeff Renn Paradigm

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Kathy Specht Paradigm

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Craig Specht Paradigm

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Lenore Sterner Paradigm

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Ian Sterner Paradigm

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Greg Titman Paradigm

I have been judging/coaching debate since 2012. In high school, I competed in Extemporaneous Speaking and dabbled a handful of times in Public Forum Debate (referred to as Ted Turner Debate at the time). Because of my background in speech, delivery remains an important factor in my decision in so far as I must be able to understand the arguments that you are presenting. In other words, do NOT spread! To me, spreading is antithetical to effective communication, which is ultimately the reason we are here - to communicate arguments for or against a proposed resolution.

I subscribe to the school of thought that Public Forum is intended to be a lay person's debate in that anybody, regardless of their background knowledge on the subject matter or debate experience, should be able to sit-in on a round and follow each side's argumentation. As it was once explained to me, your grandmother should be able to listen to your case/speech and understand what you are saying.

An effective argument consists of three key components: a claim, a warrant, and an impact (STATE It, SUPPORT It, EXPLAIN It). An emphasis on any one of these facets at the exclusion of the others results in an incomplete argument. You can't win a debate with incomplete arguments! I say all this because over the past 6 years of coaching I have witnessed a shift in emphasis away from holistic argumentation to an over-reliance upon evidence. Sure, evidence is important, but far too many debates that I've judged have devolved into a clash over whose evidence is superior or who has provided a greater quantity. As British Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli once claimed, "There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics." Use evidence to support your contentions and your rebuttals, but also provide an explanation as to how it links back into the bigger picture argument that you are trying to make. Logic can be just as effective a tool in a debate as qualitative and quantitative evidence.

In terms of the logistics for the round:

- "Off-time road-maps" are fine, but should be brief.
- You may time yourself, but my timer is the official time piece for the round.
- Individual crossfires should be standing. Grand crossfire can be seated or standing (debaters' discretion).
- Rarely, if ever, should you need to ask to see the opponent's evidence (see comments above). Teams use this as a tactic for gaining additional prep time while their opponent finds the card/original source. If you ask to see the opponents' evidence, it will count against your prep time, even while they are locating it. With that being said, each team should have their evidence (card and original source) readily available to produce should it be requested by the opponent.

Diane Unger Paradigm

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Brea Vought Paradigm

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Sean West Paradigm

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Thomas Yonkin Paradigm

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