This page is intented to assist parent volunteers in gaining insight into providing feedback at tournaments when they assist as judges.
Below are some resources that explain the different types of debate as well as some guidelines for judging each. It is natural to feel a little aprehension if this is your first time judging. This page is designed to aleviate some of those feelings. Before you get started here are some general tips to remember:
- Ultimately you are the judge. One of the things that makes a great debater is that they can adapt to various types of judges. If you have judging parameters such as no fast talking, aka spreading, let them know.
- Leave any personal bias that you have about topic or content at the door. The goal is for the students to presuade or move you. In debate, student's don't get to choose which side they argue. Students must have arguements ready for either side.
- Be positive in the round and in the comments on the ballot. This is early in the year and many of the students are still learning. Give them areas for improvement as well as comments on areas where they were strong.
- Always include a "Reason for Decision" (RFD). This helps students to improve.
- You may be asked if you give a verbal disclosure of the winner immediately after the round. We ask that you DO NOT do this. Most local tournaments have this policy and students should be aware of this.
- Judges may use student timers upon request. Judges may ask their timer questions about procedures but may not consult them on round conclusions.