Debate Procedure
12 March 2005

Parties:
  1. 1st Affirmative -- duties
  2. 2nd Affirmative -- duties
  3. 1st Negative -- duties
  4. 2nd Negative -- duties
Schedule:
  1. Part One: Construction (In a typical debate, each team member would be alloted 8-10 minutes; for our in-class debate, we will allow 5-6 minutes for each constructive speech)
    1. 1st affirmative construction
      1. For a proposition of policy, the key topic for the 1Aff construction is the need for this policy change (“ resolved that…”)
      2. For a proposition of fact, the key topic for the 1Aff construction is the issue of definition ("X or Y should be defined as..."). This includes:
        1. The justification of these definitions (e.g., on grounds such as utility, exclusivity, clarity, ubiquity); and
        2. The provision of evidence for why this particular definition (or set of definitions) should be adopted over against alternative construals of the terms ("These are the best definitions of X and Y because ...")
    2. 1st negative construction
      1. For a proposition of policy, the key topic for the 1Neg construction is that there is no need for this policy change (“the status quo should be maintained because…”)
      2. For a proposition of fact, key topics for the 1Neg construction are:
        1. The inability to define the terms; and/or
        2. The inadequacy of the 1Aff's definitions ("X or Y cannot be defined [as] ..."); and/or
        3. The proposal of alternative definitions for the terms and justification for why they are to be preferred to those provided by the 1Aff
    3. 2nd affirmative construction
      1. For a proposition of policy, the key topic for the 2Aff construction is the specific plan by which this policy change can and ought to be implemented
      2. For a proposition of fact, the key topic for the 2Aff construction is the veracity of the Proposition based on the 1Aff's definitions of the terms ("This Proposition is true because ...")
    4. 2nd negative construction
      1. For a proposition of policy, the key topic for the 2Neg construction is why the Aff's plan should be opposed ("The Aff's plan does not meet the need they have stipulated because ...") ; it may also include the proposal of a counter-plan ("If this policy change is to be implemented, a better vehicle for doing so would be …”)
      2. For a proposition of fact, a key topic for the 2Neg construction is the falsity of the Proposition based on the 1Aff's definitions of the terms or on the 1Neg's alternative definitions (If the latter, additional evidence should be adduced as to why these Neg's definitions should be adopted over those of the Aff.)
  2. Part Two: Rebuttal (In a typical debate, each team member would be alloted 3-5 minutes; for our in-class debate, we will allow 2-4 minutes for each rebuttal speech)
    1. 1st affirmative rebuttal -- focuses on the strengths of the Aff's case (need exists; plan does meet need—OR accuracy and utility of definitions; veracity of proposition) and weaknesses of Neg's objections
    2. 1st negative rebuttal -- focuses on the weaknesses in the Aff's case (no need; plan does not meet need—OR inaccuracy/deficiency of definitions; falsity of proposition)
    3. 2nd affirmative rebuttal -- focuses on the strengths of the Aff's case (need exists; plan does meet need—OR accuracy and utility of definitions; veracity of proposition) and weaknesses of Neg's objections
    4. 2nd negative rebuttal -- focuses on the weaknesses in the Aff's case (uncontested arguments you have madev Aff changes in position; still no need; plan does not meet need—OR inaccuracy/deficiency of definitions; unproven case for proposition or strength of case falsifying proposition)
Terminology:
  1. Resolution – topic of debate
    1. Affirmative is pro-resolution
    2. Negative is anti-resolution
  2. Status Quo – things as they are now
    1. Negative is pro-status quo
    2. Affirmative is anti-status quo