Resource pack section 2B
To put together a Debating Matters debate you will need:
- A CHAIRPERSON – who takes charge of the debate
- THREE JUDGES – to ask debaters questions, provide critical feedback and determine the winners
- TWO TEAMS WITH TWO STUDENTS EACH – to put forward their key arguments, having researched their topic in-depth
- AN AUDIENCE – to ask students questions and make points of their own
A DEBATING MATTERS DEBATE
0-5 MINS: INTRODUCTIONS
The chair introduces themselves, confirms the debate motion, introduces the judges and then asks the two teams to introduce themselves.
5-20 MINS: OPENING PRESENTATIONS
Students make their case in uninterrupted three-minute opening presentations.
20-35 MINS: QUESTIONS FROM THE JUDGES
Moving straight to the judges, the teams are quizzed in turn on the arguments they have made.
35-50 MINS: AUDIENCE QUESTIONS & TEAM EXCHANGES
A range of questions are asked from the audience for both teams, and the speakers are given a chance to respond. After students have responded, teams are asked to crossexamine one another. If there is time, the audience then have a final round of questions, before debaters are given the chance to offer quick responses.
50-55 MINUTES: FINAL REMARKS
Each speaker is given one minute to give their final responses to questions, and to sum up their case.
55-60 MINUTES: FEEDBACK AND COMMENTS FROM THE JUDGES
Judges are asked to provide feedback on the performances of each team.
60-65 MINUTES: AUDIENCE VOTE AND THE JUDGES’ DECISION
Judges leave the room to decide who has won the debate. While they are out, the chair can hold an audience vote, but this has no bearing on the result. The judges then return to the room, announcing the verdict and a justification for their decision.
JUDGE COMMENT: RALPH LEIGHTON, Principal Lecturer in Education, Canterbury Christ “Church University The conﬁdence students obviously gain from engaging in the debates is invaluable. The opportunity for them to challenge and to be challenged, as well as have their ideas taken seriously as adults, will put them in good stead for the future”.