Next Tournament: Ready Set Debate Summer Open
Saturday, August 7, 2021

We’re super excited to announce our very first Summer Open coming up on Saturday, August 7, 2021 from 8am-3pm Central. An “Open” Tournament means that anyone, ages 12-17 (or younger, with approval of our Head Coach, Price) can participate, even if they’re not in a Ready Set Debate club.

Here’s the tournament topic: “Regardless of their incarceration status, Americans who have been convicted of any crime should retain their right to vote.”

Each participant is guaranteed at least 3 debates in preliminary rounds. There will be 2-3 elimination rounds to determine the tournament champion(s).

Judge Requirement

Tournament participants are required to provide one volunteer judge. We welcome experienced and lay judges. Lay judges do not have to have special expertise in debate. They are ordinary adults willing to perform judging duties as a service to the participating students.

For finding lay judges, we suggest a parent or other adult family member or family friend. Judges must be fluent in English, and be a high school graduate, or beyond. You can forward this Judge Orientation document to your potential volunteers, to help them understand the expectations. We think they will enjoy the experience!

Each debater is required to provide one volunteer lay judge (willing to judge up to two debates during the tournament) OR purchase a judging waiver for $30. The link to purchase a judging waiver is here.

Past Tournaments:

May 29, 2021 – “The U.S. federal government should establish a maximum annual tuition that colleges and universities can charge while remaining eligible for funding via federal student loans.” 

April 10, 2021 – “The United States should adopt a universal basic income.”

February 14, 2021 – “In the U.S., fines should be scaled based on a person’s income.” 

November 21, 2020 – “The Electoral College should be replaced by a national popular vote.”

August 8, 2020 – “U.S. public schools should not reopen for in-person teaching until a vaccine for SARS-CoV-2 is broadly available.”

May 30, 2020 – “From a strictly educational standpoint, online learning is better than in-person learning.”

December 2019 – ““The federal minimum wage should be increased to $15 per hour.”





Judge Paradigms

READY SET DEBATE Statement to Debaters: You will benefit from a clearly stated and appropriate framework, and you’ll gain a significant advantage on the ballot if you implement your framework consistently throughout the debate. A full line-by-line rebuttal as very important, and you are encouraged to ask clarifying questions in CX if you missed any of your opponents’ case. A great way to persuade the judge to vote for you is to bring in clear and realistic impacts and convincingly demonstrate that they outweigh your opponents’ impacts. Judges won’t vote against you based on speed, but be aware that they can only flow so fast, so speak quickly at your own risk. Judges are commonly impressed by debaters who adopt a “confident, friendly, open-minded educator and collaborator” approach in their presentations. They generally look poorly upon disruptive, disrespectful, and/or belligerent conduct from debaters. While they generally will not vote against you for this conduct alone, it will guarantee you low speaker points. Judges should have a policy of viewing a round “tabula rasa” (clean slate), unless they know the competitors have been instructed to expect that the judge will be familiar with aspect(s) of the resolution. This means a judge would generally expect debaters to clearly explain any aspects of the resolution that I might not be familiar with. Judges do not tolerate dishonesty in debate, and they almost always vote against otherwise competent debaters who clearly exhibit intentional dishonesty.