Middle School Course Description

  • Grade 7
  • Grade 8
Competition Debate
Elective Course | Half Semester | Open to seventh- and eighth-grade students only

After completing this course, students will be comfortable with all dimensions of competitive debate. Building on other MS debate courses, this advanced class will emphasize participation in formal debates (1-on-1 or with a partner) and will require attendance in at least one official tournament (there are 4–5 tournament opportunities during the season). This course will review the basics and introduce advanced forms of argumentation, including topicality, counterplans, disadvantages, weighing mechanisms, and frameworks. Students will primarily research both sides of the official Utah debate resolution, but will have opportunities near the end of the term to conduct in-class debates on a topic of their choice. In addition to practicing constructive, rebuttal, and cross-examination strategies, students will develop a variety of tactical skills including: evidence comparison, cost-benefit analysis, note-taking, audience adaptation, and more. While debate is competitive in nature, students will never be graded on wins or losses, and the class works collaboratively to create and prepare cases against other schools.