Welcome to Ready Set Debate!

In-person and online debate education since 2015

Ready Set Debate students Jayel U. and Alan Y. compete for the championship title at our SLAM debate tournament, 2022. For more debate videos, see our video gallery.

Why participate in debate?

Participating in debate teaches many relevant skills, such as persuasive writing, critical listening and thinking, logical reasoning, organizing, speaking clearly in prepared and extemporaneous contexts, efficient note-taking, being creative and adapting, collaborating with others, evaluating and adapting to new information, asking relevant questions, acting professionally, and treating others with respect.

Debate clubs

Our in-person and online debate clubs simulate an academic debate team, with regular meetings at which club members debate assigned topics, receive feedback, and participate in speech exercises. We accept charter school funds.

Debate camps

During the summer, we host a series of in-person and online five-day camps, in which students have the opportunity to build their debate skills through a series of fun activities, drills, practice debates, and personalized coach feedback. 

Debate tournaments

Throughout the year, we host and attend a series of in-person and online debate tournaments to give our club and camp students, as well as others who meet attendance criteria, an opportunity to demonstrate their debate skills.

Our mission

The mission of Ready Set Debate is to provide high-quality opportunities for students aged 10-17 to become proficient in the techniques of competitive academic debate. Here are the values that support our mission:

Personalization

Students receive coach feedback and assignments tailored to their specific areas for improvement.

Breadth

Students learn and practice a set of core skills, then apply those skills in different debate formats. ​

Flexibility​

We offer educational opportunities for a wide range of budgets and desired time commitments.

Peer review

In addition to coach feedback, students evaluate each other to build their critical analysis skills.

Hear what our students and families are saying!

Expert coaching staff

Our coaches are experienced current and former college debaters and coaches, including multiple national championship title holders. Most of our coaches have experience debating in and/or coaching multiple popular high school and college debate formats.

 

The value of learning debate

“These skills, loosely categorized as elements of emotional intelligence, include the capacity to persevere through setbacks (grit), the facility to bring existing knowledge to a novel situation (creativity), comfort in working with others and knowing when to lead and when to follow (collaboration), the capability to confront the seemingly infinite volumes of information on any topic and select the relevant data (research), and sensitivity to what a target audience is thinking so that such data can be presented persuasively (empathy). The debate curriculum teaches young people much of what they’ll need to know in these areas by active, engaging, and highly direct means.”

Comparing in-person and online debating

When the debate world moved online during the COVID-19 pandemic, we collectively realized that debate activities translate exceptionally well to video calls. Because of this, many debate activities – including those at the most prestigious levels – have remained online. We use the same material and procedures for our online and in-person debate activities, and in our experience, the student learning outcomes are about the same. Here are some unique benefits of each format:

Benefits of in-person debating

+ Opportunities to hang out and connect with other students

+ Experience modeling specific details of in-person debate tournaments

+ Opportunities to make local friends

Benefits of online debating

+ Time-efficient

+ Eco-friendly (no commute or printed copies of materials)

+ Opportunities to make friends in different parts of the country and world

Interested in getting involved?