Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Representing UT Tyler at the NSDA National Debate Tournament

With the UT Tyler Debate team's season ending over three months ago, members of the team often find high schools that are looking for assistance with their tournaments or for consulting on how to improve their performance.  The members of the team will often volunteer their services to help those schools improve. Last week marked the end of the high school speech and debate season.  I had the pleasure of attending the week long tournament and judging many rounds of humurous, dramatic, and duo interpretation, and 12 debate
 rounds. It was a pleasure to watch so many excellent performances and
witness the future of speech and debate.
This was the where the finals rounds were held.
The auditorium held 4000 people!

Thousands of high school speakers and debaters converged on Kansas City, Kansas last Monday to begin their competition.  Students began competing at 8 AM on Monday morning, and some did not finish competing until late on Thursday or Friday evening. During the first two days, students competed in their main events: Humorous Interpretation, Dramatic Interpretation, Duo Interpretation, Original Oratory, Congressional Debate, Public Forum Debate, Lincoln Douglas Debate, and Policy Debate. Through 6 preliminary rounds of competition, the top 60
This is how elimination roudns were
announced.  If your "code" was on the
paper, then you had advanced to
the next round!
advanced to the next two elimination rounds.  After an additional 2 rounds of competition, the top 30 in each event were advanced, and so on until only 6 or 7 were left in each event. For debate events, competition continued until only 2 teams remained.

After a student was eliminated from their main event, they had the option to register for a supplemental and cancellation events.  These consisted of Storytelling, Expository Speaking, Prose Reading, Impromptu Speaking, Poetry Reading, Commentary Speaking, and Extemporaneous Debate. I had the pleasure of judging 2 rounds of Humorous Interpretation, 2 rounds of Duo Interpretation, and 4 rounds of Extemporaneous Debate.  It was awesome to see what students had been working on all year in preparation for this tournament.  The future is bright for the National Speech and Debate Association.

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