for Coaches


code of honor
slps conduct policy
slps videotaping policy

Section 1: Coach Reporting

Coaches’ Demographic & Information Sheet – Coaches, if you have not done so for AY18/19, please fill out this form.

 Section 2: SLUDL’s Suggested Programming Guide

Our former Program Director, Shawn Briscoe designed following programming schedule. We continue to believe it is effective at developing students. The needs of the season sometimes move these lessons one or two spots up or down the timeline; however, the basic order ensures the concepts build on one another.

Lesson -1: Welcome Back & Strategic Planning
The first meeting of the year should bring returning members and coaches together to discuss the team’s goals for the year and establish a recruiting strategy.

Lesson 0: Informational Meeting
Meet with prospective students/team members. Highlight the team’s personality, what makes the activity enjoyable, how the activity benefits students, etc.
Suggested Activity: Have 2 students (or two teams of 2) demonstrate a mock debate. Use typical strategies, but do not use cards. Suggested format: 1AC – CX – 1NC – CX – 1AR – 1NR. (All speeches are 4 minutes; CX is 2 minutes; 1 or 2 minutes of prep time before each speech.) The topic should be easily accessible. Examples: Resolved: School districts should grant academic credit for participation on debate teams. Resolved: School districts should use corporal punishment. Resolved: States should require two semesters of participation in competitive extracurricular activities for high school graduation.

Lesson 1: Intro to Debate
Introduce students to academic debate. This lesson often gets combined with “Lesson 0,” as the coach’s take on the activity.
Intro to Debate Presentation (46 minutes)

Lesson 2: Intro to Argument
Teach students the basics of argument construction. Explore what constitutes an argument, what one looks like, etc. This lesson can easily be combined with “Intro to Debate.”
Intro to Argument (18 minutes)

Lesson 3: The Rules of the Game
Introduce students to the foundations of policy debate. Highlight the specifics of the format and introduce the stock issues.
Traditional Debate Theory [MS Version] (25 minutes)
Traditional Debate Theory [HS Version] (52 minutes)
Suggested Activity: Have students work independently or in pairs to outline cases using the stock issues. Ensure they explain how they will demonstrate all five stock issues. Sample debate topics for the activity can be found through the International Debate Education Association website.

Lesson 4: Disadvantages
Introduce the concept of disadvantages to students. Explore the key components of DAs: link, brink/uniqueness, and impact.
Disadvantages (34 minutes)
Suggested Activity: Have students work independently or in pairs to outline a disadvantage to the cases they developed in Lesson 3.

Lesson 5: Speaker Roles & Responsibilities
Walk students through an entire debate round. Explore the unique responsibilities of each speech. Suggest ways to prepare for those speeches.
Speaker Duties (42 minutes)

Lesson 6: Cross Examination & Ethos
Explore two aspects of debate regularly overlooked or undervalued by debaters. Explain the importance of each.
CX & Ethos (42 minutes)
Suggested Activity: Have a student read her 1AC to the entire team. At the conclusion, open the floor to cross examination questions from the entire team for 10-15 minutes. (Optional Addition: Assign one student to be the 1NC. Have him prep while the team asks questions of the 1AC. After his speech, open the floor to cross examination questions for 10-15 minutes.)

The next three lessons do not fit neatly into the programming schedule. Ideally, the next two would occur at this point. However, they are driven more by the tournament schedule than the lesson plan program.

Lesson A: Building Your Tub
This material should be presented 2-3 weeks before the first tournament of the year. Assuming teams have not gone paperless, you should make time to teach them how to use their “tubs” effectively. Mountains of research are useless if they are not easily accessible in debate rounds.
Building A Tub (20 minutes)

Lesson B: Your First Tournament
This material should be presented during the final practice before the first tournament of the year. Students attending their first tournament do not have context for the logistics of a debate tournament. Walk them through the process of attending a tournament: etiquette, attire, behavior, reading pairings/postings, interaction with judges/competitors, expectations at awards, etc.
Your 1st Tournament (26 minutes)

Lesson C: Competing Outside
This material should be presented 1-3 weeks before competing outside your team’s usual circuit. Most teams compete in a relatively homogenous circuit for most of the season. The norms, conventions, argumentative strategies, and delivery styles vary between circuit & region. Before attending a tournament “outside the norm,” take the time to prepare students for the expectations and differences of that “foreign” circuit.

Lesson 7: Flowing
Introduce students to the benefits of flowing and the best practices of taking notes in debate. This lesson should never be presented before an examination of traditional debate theory, disadvantages, and speaker roles & responsibilities. Ideally, they should also have at least one tournament under their belt. I usually have varsity debaters informally introduce the concept of flowing prior to the first tournament, then look at it in more detail after the first tournament.
Flowing Debate (32 minutes)

Lesson 8: Counterplans
Introduce the concept of counterplans in policy debate rounds. Discuss the 4 (traditional) stock issues of a counterplan.
Counterplans (27 minutes)

Lesson 9: The Final Rebuttals
Discuss the final two speeches of the debate round (2NR & 2AR). Explore the process and methods of delivering an effective summary speech.
Summary Speeches (31 minutes)

Section 3: Suggested Textbooks & Manuals

Below you will find some textbooks and policy manuals that might be helpful for you and your students

NAUDL Handbook for New Policy Debate Coaches – A handbook that answers basic coaching questions

NAUDL Debate Coach Manual – A handbook that provides guidance on building and maintaining a competitive program

NAUDL Debate Activities Manual– A handbook that provides basic debate lesson plans and drills for debaters of all levels

Debate KC Policy Debate Lesson Plans– Handbook produced by Debate-KC with lesson plans and strategies to teach new debaters. The handbook is not written for the 2012-2013 resolution but can be easily adapted using the core files and other materials provided by the PD

Policy Debate Manual from Emory University– Handbook produced by Emory University with information particularly suited to varsity debaters

Policy Debate: A Guide for High School and College Debaters- By Shawn F. Briscoe. A textbook for coaches and advanced debaters

Section 4: Handouts & Activities

A) Below you will find specific lessons for various debate topics

Debate Review– The terms and concepts returning debaters should know and master

Total Plan of Attack 2012-13– A handout for new debaters that can be brought into debate rounds

Topicality Primer– How to run topicality arguments

Answering Topicality Handout– How to answer topicality arguments

Answering Topicality Worksheet– A worksheet to assist debaters in answering topicality

The Disadvantage– How to run a disadvantage

DA Graphic Organizer– A visual representation of how to debate a disadvantage

How to Write Quality Arguments– How to research and write strong debate arguments

Counterplan Theory-How to effectively run counterplans

B) Below you will find some activities to do with your students to develop debate and critical thinking skills

Topicality Drills– Small mini debates to practice topicality

Spontaneous Response Drills– Activities to help students work on critical thinking and response

Speaking Drills– Activities to work on cold reading and presentation skills

Rebuttal Redo Guidelines-Activities to help students master rebuttals by redoing speeches after a tournament

Rebuttal Redo Rubric– A rubric to assist in evaluating the rebuttal redos

Flowing and Signposting Drill– Activities that assist debaters of all levels with flowing and speech organization

Line By Line Refuttation Drills– Activities that assist debaters with answering arguments is an organized fashion

Cross Examination Circle-Activities to assist debaters with understanding arguments and to develop stronger analytic skills

Miscellaneous Debate Drills-Activities that require as little as 5 minutes but still work on core skills. Great for the beginning of practice.