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Cross-Examination Debate Structure
Transcript of Cross-Examination Debate Structure
The Affirmative Case
There is one simple thing that the affirmative team must do in a debate round. They must affirm the resolution in a way that the negative can negate it. So how do you do this?
Understanding the Resolution
To understand the resolution you need to be able to pick it apart into separate sections. The last years resolution was The United States federal govt. should substantially increase its economic engagement with Cuba, Mexico, or Venezuela. There are two steps you need to follow.
Structuring the AFF case
The structure of your case is very important because it is the first speech the judge will hear. If it's all jumbled up then the judge will be lost for the rest of the round and will most likely vote against you.
Putting the case together
Know that you know these three simple steps: picking a case, structuring the case, and adapting to your judge, you are ready to win any affirmative round.
Adapting to the judge
This is the thing that will decide whether you take first place or second place at a tournament. Being able to adapt your style of debate to the judge is necessary if you want them to understand you. There are 3 main types of debate judges you need to be prepared for in our circuit.
Understand what the resolution is asking and simplify/narrow your field of options of possible cases.
When picking a case make sure you pick a case that is somewhere in your field of knowledge. Even the worst cases can be made into the greatest when you have a general understanding of what your advocating.
Finally you now need to structure your case in a way that is adapteded to the judge and can be easily explained by you but retains a bit of complexity so that the image of professionalism is maintained.
Step 1: Understand the resolution
You need to take apart the resolution. It is asking for the US govt. to somehow engage with one of these three countries to where there economies will grow.
Step 2: Picking a case
Picking the right case can make the difference between breaking to quarterfinals or going 3-1. You need to pick a case where you have a good amount of background knowledge on it. Remember a bad case with some simple knowledge can hold its own against almost any argument. It's all about which case suits you.
The basic structure
The most easily understandable structure for our circuit is based on the 5 stock issues of policy debate. Even if a judge doesn't know them, they are easy to explain.
The 5 stock issues
1.) Significance - why is your case important.
2.) Harms - what is happening in the status-quo that is bad.
3.) Inherency - what is stopping you plan from happening.
4.) Topicality - Is you plan following the resolution.
5.) Solvency - by implementing your plan, what harms can be solved.
How it should be made -1
A simple novice case should be structured as follows :
Remember these steps are the simplest forms of one debate style. There are many other styles and structures to debate an affirmative case. There are also many other judging styles that branch from those main three. This is only to help you get started. You will need to start structuring your case to where it suits you to win round after you've begun understanding how debate works.
1.) Lay Judge
These are the judges who have no idea on what they are doing. You will have to simplify everything down and help them understand what you want them to know.
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2.) Debate Parent
These judges usually have kids in debate and have judged a few rounds before. They will think they know everything there is to know about debate but in reality they don't know anything. You can use debate jargon but otherwise go with the lay-judge approach.
3.) Flow Judges
These are the judges who have done debate in high school and college and know what they are talking about. They will take notes on your arguments so don't let things slip or forget to attack an opposing argument. You use anything with these judges as long as you do it correctly.
Based on Jim Harvey's speech structures
CX Case Structure
You do not need to talk about topicality unless your opponents bring it up.
Plan Text is simply how/what you will be doing in your plan.
Significance doesn't need its own category. If you solve something important then you are significant.
Advantages are just added bonuses you plan will have when you implement it.
How it shoube made - 2
Observation 1: Inherancy
Observation 2: Harms
Observation 3: Plan
Observation 5: Solvency
Observation 6: Advantages