2011-2012 Minnesota State High School League
Fine Arts Rules & Policies Manual


DEBATE

All Debate participants must meet all of the Eligibility Guidelines as stated in the MSHSL Official Handbook as identified below.

See Bylaw:

100 Bylaws / 200 Bylaws

101: Age

102: Attendance

103: Credit Requirements

104: Enrollment

105: Grade Level

106: Graduates of Secondary Schools

108: Scholastic Eligibility

110: Semesters Enrolled

205: Chemical Eligibility

206: General Eligibility Requirements

209: Sexual/Racial/Religious Harassment

 

CONTENTS

  1. Debate General Rules

  2. Section Debate Tournaments

  3. State Debate Tournament

  4. State Debate Tournament Judging

 

DEFINITIONS OF TERMS

REGION
The term “region” will refer only to the administrative region and all administrative functions of region.

SECTION
The term “section” will refer to a geographic grouping of schools for competition.

 

A.                  Policy Debate

A Policy debate team consists of two (2) contestants debating on a resolution chosen by the MSHSL in advance of the Section Tournaments.

 

Procedure: The Policy debate topic will be the National Federation's national high school resolution for the current year.

 

B.         Lincoln-Douglas Debate
A Lincoln-Douglas debate team consists of one (1) contestant debating on a resolution chosen by the MSHSL in advance of the Section Tournaments.

 

Procedure: The Lincoln-Douglas topic selected by the MSHSL shall be the resolution designated by the National Forensic League for January/February.

 

I.  GENERAL DEBATE RULES

 

A.         Policy Debate

An official entry in Policy debate shall be two (2) debaters and an alternate designated prior to the tournament. Once an alternate is used, s/he must be used throughout the competition on that day.

1.       Each debater shall be entitled to only one constructive speech, one rebuttal speech and one cross-examination, organized as follows, etc.  Debaters shall not be penalized for which constructive, rebuttal or cross-examination they choose to give.

 

Constructive Speeches:

Affirmative

8 minutes

Cross examination by negative

3 minutes

Negative

8 minutes

Cross examination by affirmative

3 minutes

Affirmative

8 minutes

Cross examination by negative

3 minutes

Negative

8 minutes

Cross examination by affirmative

3 minutes

 

Rebuttal Speeches:

Negative

5 minutes

Affirmative

5 minutes

Negative

5 minutes

Affirmative

5 minutes

 

2.   Each debater on a team must deliver a constructive speech, a rebuttal speech and a cross-examination; the penalty for violation of this rule will be a forfeit and no speaker points for the team in that round.

 

3.   A judge shall not be recorded as having heard a team or debater unless s/he made a decision for that round. Forfeit is considered to be a decision made by the tournament manager.  In the event of a disqualification or a reversal of a decision after the completion of the round, the judges shall be recorded as having heard each team or debater based on his/her original decision in the round.

 

4.   Each entry is expected to bring an electronic device to be available for all rounds in which their team is debating. Judges are responsible for official time keeping in the round. Preparation time during rounds shall be five (5) minutes.

 

B.         Lincoln-Douglas Debate

1.     An official entry in Lincoln-Douglas debate shall be one (1) debater. If an entry is unable to continue participating after the start of Round 1, there will be no substitution.

 

2.       The speeches of the debate shall be organized as follows:

 

Affirmative constructive

6 minutes

Cross examination by negative

3 minutes

Negative constructive

7 minutes

Cross examination by affirmative

3 minutes

Affirmative rebuttal

4 minutes

Negative rebuttal

6 minutes

Affirmative rebuttal

3 minutes

 

3.     Each entry is expected to bring an electronic device to be available for all rounds in which their team is debating. Judges are responsible for official time keeping in the round. Preparation time during rounds shall be four (4) minutes.

 

C.         General Debate Rules (Section & State Debate Tournaments)

1.    An official entry shall be designated prior to the tournament. Substitution shall be for illness or extreme family emergency only.

 

2.    The debaters shall receive no coaching while the debate round is in progress.

 

3.    In the event of a tie in speaker points in Policy Debate or Lincoln-Douglas Debate, a tie may be awarded to either entry.

 

4.   The exchange of specific evidence between schools designed to give an unfair advantage to one entry/school is not permitted. Evidence shall include flows, cases, tape recordings, briefs, articles or books. Such evidence is not to be exchanged at any time by anyone from the start of registration through the completion of the final round.

 

5.   The use of laptop computers shall be permitted at the MSHSL State Tournament.

 

a.   Computers equipped with removable wireless cards must have the cards removed before the beginning of any round of competition. It is the responsibility of the contestant to disengage equipment.

b.   Computers with built-in wireless capability may be used only if the wireless capability is disabled. It is the responsibility of the contestant to disable the equipment.

c.   Wired connections (Ethernet or phone) during rounds of competition are not permitted,

d.   Computers or other electronic devices may not be used to receive information from any source (coaches or assistants included) inside or outside the room in which the competition occurs. Internet access, use of e-mail, instant messaging, or other means of receiving information from sources inside or outside the competition room are prohibited. (This does not prohibit non-electronic communication between debate partners during prep time.)

e.   Sanction: Contestants found to have violated provisions a—c above shall forfeit the round of competition and receive zero points. Contestants found to have violated provision d above shall be disqualified from the tournament and shall forfeit all rounds. In case of a serious dispute or critical question, the tournament jury will have the final ruling.

f.    Availability of Evidence: Contestants electing to use computers shall have the responsibility to promptly provide a copy of any evidence read in a speech for inspection by the judge or opponent. Printers may be used. Evidence may be printed in the round or produced electronically, but must be provided in a format readable by the opposing team and the judge.

g.   Contestants electing to use computers are responsible for providing their own computers, batteries, extension cords and all other necessary accessories. Tournament hosts shall not be responsible for providing computers, printers, software, paper, or extension cords for contestants.

h.   Because public speaking decorum remains an important element of debate, all debaters are expected to stand at the front of the room facing the judge while speaking.

i.    Contestants choosing to use laptop computers and related equipment accept the risk of equipment failure, No special consideration or accommodations, including no additional prep time or speech time, will be given by judges or contest directors should equipment failure occur.

j.    By choosing to use laptop computers in the round, debaters are consenting to give tournament officials the right to search their files. Debaters who do not wish to consent should not use computers in the round.

 

6.   Evidence Rules – Policy and Lincoln Douglas Debate

a.   Responsibilities of teams reading evidence

1)   The team is responsible for the validity of all evidence they read in the debate.

2)   In all rounds of LD, debaters should, at a minimum, orally deliver title of the source, qualifications of source and the author’s name. In Policy Debate, all debaters shall orally deliver the name of the author, qualifications of source, title of source (for example title of book, not chapter; title of journal, not article), and complete date.

3)   In all rounds of debate, complete citations for each piece of evidence introduced in the round must be available in the round. Written citations must include name of the author, qualifications, complete title of source (for example, title of book, not chapter; title of journal, not article), and complete date. Online sources must also include the title of the site, database, or access point, the date accessed, and the web address. The additional citation required for online sources must appear on all evidence, but is not required to be read. Should two or more quotations be used from the same source, the author and title need be given orally only for the first piece of evidence from that source. In the subsequent oral citation, only the author’s name is required.

4)   Either no internal ellipsis (Ellipses occur after the first word of the quotation and before the final word) may be used in evidence cited on a card, or ellipses may be shown on cards, if the original source or a photocopy is present. The evidence may be read in ellipsed form, but the entirety of the evidence must be available in one of the two ways previously cited.

5)   Personal letters or telegrams shall not be admissible as evidence.

 

b.   Responsibilities of teams challenging evidence

1)    Indictments or protests of the validity of evidence must be made on substantive grounds.

2)    A challenger must have either the original source or a photocopy of the source being cited, or

3)    A challenger must demonstrate that reasonable search has not been able to locate the source – photocopies of relevant pages in Books in Print, Reader’s Guide, P.A.I.S., etc.

 

c.   Definitions of Non-existent evidence or evidence which seriously distorts the intention of the original source.

1)  "Serious distortion" exists when the evidence itself contains added or deleted word(s) which do not clarify but in fact change the position of the author with respect to the issues in question.

2)  "Non-existent evidence" means that

i.    Reasonable search is unable to produce the original source and/or the team reading the evidence is unable to provide the original source or a photocopy of the relevant pages.

ii.    The evidence cited is not located in the original source cited. Typographical errors in citation will not automatically result in the evidence being labeled non-existent, if the team reading the evidence can produce the correct information.

 

7.   Rules of Evidence Authenticity

a.   Judges are prohibited from requesting and reading any piece of evidence at the end of a round unless the issue of authenticity was raised during the debate or unless the Judge has substantial reason to suspect the authenticity of the evidence.

Authenticity refers to:

1)   Fabrication: falsely representing a cited fact or statement of opinion as evidence; or intentional omission/addition of information within quoted material.

2)   Distortion: misrepresentation of evidence or of citation which significantly alters meaning or context.

b.   Debaters are responsible for the authenticity of evidence they present in rounds and shall allow the opposing team/debater to examine evidence introduced in the round. Any challenges to the authenticity of evidence must be made by the debaters during the round or at the conclusion of the second affirmative rebuttal.

c.   Judges should not allow an apparent violation to enter into their decision unless the evidence is challenged by the opposing team or unless the Judge has substantial reason to suspect the authenticity of the evidence.

Procedure: The Judge will wait until after the debate, when all other arguments have been presented, to investigate an alleged evidence violation. In the event of an evidence challenge by the other team, be sure that the nature of the violation is clearly specified by the opposing team within the context of the debate; vague accusations do not warrant investigation. If you request to see a piece of evidence, you must notify the debaters that the reason is a matter of a possible serious violation of ethical use of evidence.

 

d.   If the Judge decides that an authenticity challenge is legitimate:

1)   In the case of fabrication (see 7-a-1), the Judge shall award a loss with zero points as the penalty to the offending team and shall report the offense to the Tournament Manager. In the event of a judging panel, each Judge will make his/her decision individually and report the offense to the Tournament Manager who will call the Tournament Jury together to review the offense; the Tournament Jury may then provide an opportunity for the panel to confer if necessary.

2)   In the case of distortion (see 7-a-2), the Judge will determine the severity of the penalty based upon the severity of the violation; the Judge may void the effect of that evidence or may impose an additional penalty up to a loss with no speaker points; the severity of the penalty should commensurate with the severity of the distortion violation. In the event of a judging panel, each Judge will make his/her decision individually.

3)   In the rare event of a judge-initiated authenticity challenge, which has not been introduced by the debaters in the round, the Judge must submit the challenge to the Tournament Manager for review by the Tournament Jury prior to any succeeding rounds.

8.   A false accusation of unethical conduct is considered a serious violation of ethics.

 

9.       During the tournament, it is unethical for any Judge hired for the tournament to reveal his/her decision, to reveal his/her reasons for decision. It is also unethical for any coach, student, observer or Judge to attempt to influence the decision of a Judge before, during, or after a round.

 

II.  SECTIONAL DEBATE TOURNAMENTS

 

A.                  Section Organization

 

Debate shall be organized on a section basis, and shall be under the supervision of the Region Committee designated by the Board of Directors. The MSHSL shall determine the number and apportionment of sections.

 

Procedure: There are four (4) sections in Minnesota. The section alignment shall be reviewed every 2 years to provide an equal number of schools based on registration for debate with the MSHSL.

 

The Region Committee shall assume full control and financial responsibility for administering the Section Tournament. Expenses shall include fees paid officials and judges, advertising, tickets, rentals and other miscellaneous items for conducting the event. Administration expenses, however, do not include transportation, meals and housing for the participating schools or contestants.

 

Each Section Tournament shall be conducted by a Section Committee. The Tournament Committee which must include, but is not limited to, the Tournament Manager and MDTA Section Representative.

 

B.         Section Tournament Administration

1.   Registration of Schools

 

Each Section Committee shall establish a procedure for the registration of schools in the section, and will publish that procedure in advance of the tournament. The MSHSL will determine the number of teams each school may enter in their Section Tournament.

 

Procedure: Each school may enter one (1) or two (2) teams at their Section Tournament in each debate event.

 

2.       Tournament Format and Procedure

 

The Section Committee shall determine the site and time for the Section Tournament. The Section Tournament must be completed one week prior to the date of the State Tournament.

 

Each Section Committee shall determine the number of rounds to be used in the Section Tournament. Pairings should be made by following a format that was agreed to in advance by the majority of coaches in the section. The Section Committee shall designate the number of judges to be used for each debate in the Section Tournament.

 

3.       State Qualifiers

 

The MSHSL shall determine the number of debate entries qualifying from each section into the State Debate Tournament.

 

Procedure:

Six (6) teams qualify from each Section Tournament in Lincoln-Douglas Debate.
Five (5) teams qualify from each Section Tournament in Policy Debate.

 

In all Section Tournaments, ranking of entries shall be by the following:

a.   The number of decisions won

b.   In a two-way tie, the result of a head-to-head competition between the entries wins.

c.   The number of total speaker points dropping the highest and lowest speaker points.

d.   The number of decisions won by your opponents during the tournament.

e.   The total number of speaker points.

 

As soon as the Section Tournament is over, the Tournament Manager shall notify the Associate Director of the League, who provides leadership for Debate. The Director will proceed to arrange the State Tournament for the qualifying teams.

 

4.       Rules and Disputes

 

The Section Committee should establish written rules of conduct for the Section Tournament; these rules should be distributed to all participants prior to the tournament.

 

All disputes, except eligibility, involving Debate Section Tournaments shall be settled by the Section Committee. Committee decisions are final.

 


RESPONSIBILITY FOR SPECTATOR CONDUCT (8/9/05)

In order to elevate standards of sportsmanship and encourage the growth of responsible citizenship among the students, member schools, fans and school personnel, the MSHSL held a Sportsmanship Summit and asked student participants to identify behavior expectations they felt should be in place at every school event.

 

These minimum behavior expectations provide a foundation upon which member schools, conferences, administrative regions and the League’s Board of Directors can build specific guidelines for activities under their control.

 

MSHSL Bylaw 409, RESPONSIBILITY FOR PARTICIPATING TEAMS, STUDENTS AND SPECTATORS, speaks to this issue, directly, and Bylaw 409-2 specifically states that, “School officials shall be held responsible for the proper conduct of teams, team members, students and home spectators regardless of where the contest is being held.”

 

In all MSHSL activities, each participating school shall designate a person or persons from that school to serve as crowd control supervisors or chaperones.  MSHSL tournament staff may require school administrators to contact the tournament manager prior to the start of the tournament game so that they can be immediately contacted to respond to behavioral issues regarding their team members, students and/or spectators at the tournament site.  Each supervisor or chaperone should be immediately identifiable to the students and to the tournament site ushers and other security personnel.  This will help to coordinate crowd control between school supervisors and tournament site personnel.

 

MSHSL MINIMAL BEHAVIOR EXPECTATIONS FOR REGULAR AND POST-SEASON TOURNAMENT COMPETITIONS:

 

THANK YOU for supporting your student athletes and fine arts participants and for providing a positive environment in which educational activities are conducted.


III. STATE DEBATE TOURNAMENT

 

A.         State Tournament Organization

1.   Qualifying Entry

The entry that advances to the State Policy Debate Tournament must be the entry which competed at the Section Tournament (unless a hardship can be shown such as extreme travel distance or illness). The alternate for an entry in Policy Debate shall be designated at the conclusion of the Section Tournament. No alternates or substitutions are permitted at the State Lincoln-Douglas Debate Tournament.

 

2.   School Information Packets

Each school will receive a registration packet with general tournament information. Debate ballots and partial results will be made available once the final round has begun.

 

3.   Informational Meetings
Two informational meetings will be held prior to Round 1 to review the rules of the State Tournament and will include the following individuals:

 

a.   Coaches, competitors, timekeepers, and observers

b.   Judges

4.   Schedules

Schedules for individual debates on both days of the State Tournament will be made available to coaches, judges and the public ten (10) minutes before the beginning of each round.

 

5.   Announcement of Results

A public announcement of entries advancing to the quarterfinal rounds in debate will be made immediately after the completion of preliminary rounds.

 

Approximately thirty (30) minutes prior to the beginning of the semifinal and final debates, a public announcement of the results of the previous round shall be made by the MSHSL. After that time, coaches of remaining teams shall be summoned to the tournament headquarters for the drawing of sides and the selection of judging panels.

 

6.       Public Observation of Debates

All rounds of the State Debate Tournament shall be opened to public observation, flowing, and note taking by observers. Judges are not to observe any debates other than those they are judging. Observers shall not attempt to influence the debate through verbal or nonverbal reaction.

 

7.   Rules and Disputes

a.   Board of Directors

In case of a dispute as to the interpretation of the Constitution or Rules of the League, the Board of Directors of the League shall be the final authority. The tournament management staff may deviate from the announced schedule, policies or procedures if unforeseen events occur.

 

b.   Tournament Jury

The Tournament Jury will review judge-initiated authenticity challenges, fabrication challenges in panel rounds, and disputes involving the State Tournament procedures. The jury will conduct an investigation of the dispute and make its recommendation to the Tournament Manager; the jury can make any recommendation to the Tournament Manager, up to and including a loss with no speaker points, in any round for violation of the rules. Such procedures must be initiated prior to any succeeding round. The decision of the Tournament Jury shall be communicated (by the Tournament Manager) to the coaches involved and upon the recommendation of the Tournament Jury, to other tournament participants.

 

Procedure: The jury is made of the President of the MDTA and 2 at-large members appointed by the MSHSL. Equal representation of coaches from a Lincoln-Douglas coach and a Policy coach must be appointed to the tournament jury.

 

8.   Forfeiture

Any entry which does not appear for a round within ten minutes of its posting may be disqualified from that round. If a bye is necessary, the entry receiving the bye shall be awarded speaker points equal to the average speaker points they received in all other rounds of the tournament. If a forfeit is given, the losing entry shall receive no speaker points, and the winning entry shall receive a bye.

 

B.                  State Tournament Debate Pairings

 

1A. Preliminary Rounds-Lincoln-Douglas Debate

The MSHSL shall develop a six (6) round schedule for the preliminary rounds. The following guidelines will be used in developing the schedule:

a)   Each entry will debate three times on each side of the resolution.

b)   Entries will not meet for a second time.

c)   Entries will not meet another team from its own school.

 

Procedure:

Rounds 1 and 2 - Entries will be randomly placed in a schedule for rounds 1 and 2 based on the following criteria: Entries shall uphold each side of the resolution; entries shall debate two different sections than their own. Entries will be broken into two groups based on section results; a top bracket (those finishing in 1st, 2nd and 3rd place) and a bottom bracket (those finishing in 4th, 5th and 6th place) within their respective sections. Entries shall debate one top bracket and one bottom bracket from different sections.

 

Rounds 3 and 5 - Rounds 3 and 5 will be paired high/low within win-loss records, beginning with the undefeated group, and progressing by number of losses. If a group has an uneven number of entries, the entry with the lowest opponent wins shall be drawn up and ranked according to speaker points. A team shall not be drawn up in more than once during any preliminary round. Sides for these debates will alternate by the high teams in the pairings; beginning with the high team in the first pairing being placed by draw as affirmative or negative; the high team in the next pairing will then be placed on the opposite side; the high team in each successive pairing will alternate sides following this pattern throughout the win-loss bracket.

 

Rounds 4 and 6 - Entries will be separated into two groups: those due to uphold the affirmative and those due to uphold the negative. Within each group, entries shall be ranked first by win-loss record, then by speaker points, then by draw. The highest ranked entry scheduled to uphold the affirmative should meet the lowest ranked entry scheduled to uphold the negative. If a group has an uneven number of entries the lowest opponent wins shall be drawn up and ranked according to speaker points. A team shall not be drawn up more than once during any preliminary round.

 

1B. Preliminary Rounds - Policy Debate

The MSHSL shall develop a five (5) round schedule for the preliminary rounds. The following guidelines will be used in developing the schedule:

a)   Each team will debate 2 times on each side of the issue.

b)   Entries will not meet for a second time.

c)   Entries will not meet another team from its own school.

 

Procedure:  For Rounds 1-2, entries will be randomly placed in a schedule for rounds 1 and 2 based on the following criteria: entries shall uphold each side of the resolution and entries shall debate two different sections than their own. Entries will be broken into two groups based on section results; a top bracket (those finishing 1st, 2nd, and two randomly drawn 3rd place finishers) and a bottom bracket (the remaining two 3rd place finishers and the 4th and 5th place entries) within their respective sections. Entries shall debate one top bracket and one bottom bracket from different sections.

 

Rounds 3 and 5 will be paired high/low within win-loss records, beginning with the undefeated group, and progressing by number of losses. If a group has an uneven number of entries, the entry with the lowest opponent wins shall be drawn up and ranked according to speaker points. A team shall not be drawn up more than once in any preliminary round. Sides for these debates will alternate by the high teams in the pairings; beginning with the high team in the first pairing being placed by draw as affirmative or negative; the high team in the next pairing will the be placed in the opposite side the high team in each successive pairing will alternate sides following this pattern throughout the win-loss bracket.

 

Round 4 will be paired high/low within win/loss records. Entries will be separated into two groups: those due to uphold the affirmative and those due to uphold the negative. Within each group, entries shall be ranked first by win-loss record, then by speaker points, then by draw. The highest ranked entry scheduled to uphold the affirmative should meet the lowest ranked entry within their win-loss bracket scheduled to uphold the negative. if a group has an uneven number of entries the entry with the lowest opponent wins shall be drawn up and ranked according to speaker points. A team shall not be drawn up more than once during any preliminary round.

 

2.   Elimination Rounds

Eight entries shall qualify for the elimination rounds of the State Debate Tournament in both events. The selection of these entries and their seeding will be determined by the following criteria (in descending order of use) based on the preliminary rounds:

a)   The number of decisions won.

b)   In a two-way tie, the result of "head-to-head" competition between entries wins.

c)   The number of total speaker points dropping the highest and lowest speaker points.

d)   The total number of decisions won by your opponent.

e)   The total number of speaker points.

f)    If the entries are still tied, the coaches involved shall draw for position.

 

The eight (8) teams selected shall be placed in the following bracket for the remainder of the tournament.  

 

 

In elimination rounds, sides shall be determined by a blind draw by the coaches of the two competing entries, unless they have previously met in the tournament, in which case they shall reverse sides from their previous meeting.

 

Entries from the same school which meet in the elimination rounds may declare a winner in their round without debating. This result must be declared prior to the completion of other debates. In the event two entries from the same school meet in the final round, the debate must take place.

 

IV.   STATE DEBATE TOURNAMENT JUDGING

 

A.         Judge Assignments

1.   Hiring of Judges

The MSHSL shall employ enough judges to manage the tournament within the judging guidelines. It is recommended that fourteen (14) and six (6) Saturday only judges shall be chosen to judge Policy Debate, and at least eighteen (18) shall be chosen to judge Lincoln-Douglas. These judges may be active debate coaches or other qualified professionals, registered with the MSHSL.

 

Procedure: The MSHSL will solicit the recommended State Tournament Judges from the Minnesota Debate Teachers Association. Judges who are offered a contract by the MSHSL will be strongly encouraged in a letter to hear at least fifteen (15) debate rounds during the season.

 

2.   Judge Conflicts

Judges hired for the State Debate Tournament shall notify the MSHSL of any potential conflicts they may have in judging particular entries. Judges will not be assigned to hear an entry which they have a conflict with (this will include hearing their own school).

 

Procedure: A Judge may be disqualified from hearing an entry/school at the State Debate Tournament in one of two ways: the Judge, when asked on his/her contract, requests to be disqualified from hearing an entry/school; or when the MSHSL staff, after consultation with the MDTA President, determines that a Judge should be disqualified from hearing an entry/school.

 

An individual coach may request that a Judge be disqualified from hearing an entry/school; that recommendation shall be made to the MDTA President and reviewed with the President-Elect prior to the President's consultation with MSHSL staff. In no instance will a Judge be disqualified from hearing a team/school once registration has begun at the State Tournament.

 

Lincoln-Douglas coaches may strike 1 of 18 Judges for both days or 1 judge on Friday and one different Judge on Saturday. Strikes may not exceed one judging unit for the tournament.

 

Policy Coaches may strike 1 of 12 Judges for both days, and 1 of 6 judges who are judging Saturday only. The provisional selection will be allowed unless a panel of 9 judges cannot be selected according to the Judge Assignment Policy. All other procedures must be exhausted before provisional selections are assigned to semifinal or final panels

 

Procedure: Coaches shall inform the MSHSL of their Judge selection at the completion of their Section Tournament. This should be submitted by the Section Tournament Manager with the tournament results immediately after the Section Tournament.

 

3.   Assignments for Preliminary Rounds

Judges will be assigned a code, which will determine their specific judging assignments on day one, in accordance with a schedule established by the MSHSL. Judge assignments shall be randomly determined, within the following rules:

a)   Judges shall only judge in the event(s) for which they are chosen.

b)   Judges should not hear an entry for a second time during preliminary rounds.

 

Procedure: The following guidelines shall be followed, where possible, for the assignments in preliminary rounds: Judge byes will be distributed evenly; Judges should not hear a school a second time. If the Judge must hear a school again, it cannot be on the same side of the resolution; Judges should not hear a school from their own section.

 

4.   Assignments for Elimination Rounds

a)   In the quarterfinal rounds of both events, panels of three will be used to hear the debates. In the semifinals, panels of five (5) will be used; in the finals, panels of seven (7) will be used.

b)   In the quarterfinals of debate, no Judge selection process will be utilized. In the remaining rounds, the following Judge selection process will be used.

 

Option A:

Semifinals-five judges selected from panels of seven

Finals-seven judges selected from panels of nine

 

Option B:

Semifinals-three judges selected from panels of seven

Finals-five judges selected from panels of seven

 

If two complete panels of seven cannot be simultaneously compiled sequentially, begin with the debate with the highest remaining seed.

 

c)   The Judges assigned to panels should be chosen at random from among those available Judges who have not heard either entry. As possible, Judges who are coaches of entries still competing shall not hear rounds where a conflict may occur.

 

Procedure: Tournament Management will try to avoid potential conflicts when evaluating Judge placements, between two otherwise equal judges.  For example, as possible, they will avoid:  Judges who are coaches of a school in an event hearing an entry in elimination rounds that their school may debate in semifinal rounds; Judges hearing a semifinal in an event if their school is still competing; Judges hearing an entry in consecutive rounds.

 

d)   If necessary, panels shall be completed with Judges who have heard entries in previous rounds. The priority for assigning Judges shall be:

1)   Judges who have heard both entries, and given both a win

2)   Judges who have heard both entries, and given both a loss

3)   Judges who have heard one entry, and given it a win

4)   Judges who have heard one entry, and given it a loss

5)   Judges who have heard both entries, and gave one a win and one a loss

6)   Judges shall not be assigned to hear an entry more than twice unless all other judge assignment possibilities have been exhausted.

 

e)   For the semifinal or final rounds, as soon as the potential judges have been selected for a given debate, the two coaches of the entries involved will be given three (3) minutes in which to select a panel either by mutual consent or by each coach striking one judge.

 

5.       Announcement of Judge Assignments

Judge assignments for rounds on both days of the State Tournament shall be posted (in the judge's lounge) on the schedules ten (10) minutes prior to the beginning of the debate.

 

JUDGES’ BALLOTS

 

Ballots for each round should be picked up at and returned to the designated Tournament Headquarters. Judges not assigned to a round are not to observe any round of debate unless they have completed their judging obligation.

Ballots should be thoroughly completed with the following information:

 

a.      Designation of round

b.   Room

c.   Judge code

d.   Judge name

e.   Judge affiliation

f.    Affirmative and negative code numbers

g.   Affirmative and negative speaker names

h.   Individual speaker totals

i.    Entry speaker totals (in Policy Debate)

j.    Winning entry number and side

 

Please check to make sure all of this is included on your ballot before handing it in at Tournament Headquarters.

 

In the event of a tie in speaker points in Policy Debate or Lincoln-Douglas Debate, a tie may be awarded to either entry.

 

Use your professional judgment in assigning individual and team speaker points. Remember, the total speaker points will be influential in determining the qualifying entries for the elimination rounds of the tournament.

 

The reason for decision should be written specifically in reference to the key issues affecting the outcome of the debate. While comments regarding speaker style and delivery are appreciated, emphasis should be placed on the content and issues presented in the debate. Your reason for decision should be very explicit as to why one entry won and the other entry lost the debate. You should ignore personal prejudices and decide on the merits of the debate itself.

 

TIMING/PREP TIME

 

In Policy Debate, the times for the speeches are as follows:

 

Constructive Speeches:

Affirmative

8 minutes

Cross examination by negative

3 minutes

Negative

8 minutes

Cross examination by affirmative

3 minutes

Affirmative

8 minutes

Cross examination by negative

3 minutes

Negative

8 minutes

Cross examination by affirmative

3 minutes

 

Rebuttal Speeches:

Negative

5 minutes

Affirmative

5 minutes

Negative

5 minutes

Affirmative

5 minutes

 

In Policy Debate, debaters shall not be penalized for which constructive, rebuttal or cross examination they choose to give.

 

In Lincoln-Douglas Debate, the times for the speeches are as follows:

Affirmative Constructive

6 minutes

Cross examination by negative

3 minutes

Negative constructive

7 minutes

Cross examination by affirmative

3 minutes

Affirmative rebuttal

4 minutes

Negative rebuttal

6 minutes

Affirmative rebuttal

3 minutes

 

The prep time at the State Tournament shall be five (5) minutes per entry in Policy Debate, four (4) minutes in Lincoln-Douglas Debate.

 

Each entry should have a Timekeeper available for each round. If both entries have provided a Timekeeper, please designate the Timekeeper representing the affirmative side as the Official Timekeeper. The Timekeeper shall be responsible for accurately timing all speeches and preparation time. Timekeepers are encouraged to utilize electronic timers. Time cards shall be used to inform debater of remaining time during speeches and cross-examination periods. Timekeepers shall verbally announce, by the minute, prep time used.

 

OBSERVERS

 

All rounds of the State Tournament shall be open to public observation.

 

FLOWING

 

Judges are expected to flow the arguments and issues in each debate.

 

All debates at the State Debate Tournament shall be open to flowing and note taking by observers under the rules of the tournament.

 

RULES OF EVIDENCE

 

(Section C - General Debate Rules Section & Debate Tournaments.)

 

GENERAL CONDUCT

 

During the tournament, it is unethical for a Judge hired for the tournament to reveal his/her decision, to reveal his/her reasons for decision, and/or to discuss the content of any debate judged with students, coaches, and other judges. It is also unethical for any coach, student, observer or Judge to attempt to influence the decision of a Judge before, during or after a round.

 

A coach shall not seek an unfair advantage or behave in an otherwise unethical manner in a MSHSL-sanctioned event in his/her conduct regarding coaches, judges, teams, tournament officials or any other aspect relating to the operation and management of the tournament.

 

Charts, maps, etc. shall be admissible and shall be accessible to both teams during the debate.

 

DISPUTES

 

Any disputes involving tournament rules in a round shall be reported to the Tournament Director.

 

COACHING AIDS

 

The following materials will be posted on the MSHSL Website:

1.       Fine Arts Master Calendar

2.       Rules & Policies for Debate

3.       Sanction Forms

4.       Current Debate Topics

5.       Competitive Section Assignments

6.       Contest Manager Information

7.       School Information for State Tournament

 

AWARDS POLICIES

 

Awards for all activities sponsored by the MSHSL are determined by policies adopted by the Board of Directors. The awards are regularly reviewed by the Awards Committee.

 

It is a violation of MSHSL policy for a member school or a representative of a member school to establish, distribute or accept any awards not provided by the MSHSL for Section or State Tournaments.

 

AWARDS

LINCOLN-DOUGLAS DEBATE

 

Section:

Trophies:

To the champion and runner-up schools

Medals:

To 1st place, 2nd place, and semifinalists

State:

Certificate of Participation:

To each student participant

Trophies:

To the champion and runner-up

Plaques:

To the semifinalists

Medals:

To the champion, 2nd place, semi-finalists, and quarterfinalists 

 

DEBATE

 

Section:

 

Trophies:

To the champion and runner-up schools

Medals:

To champion team, 2nd place team, and semifinalist teams

State:

 

Certificate of Participation:

To each student member of each official team

Trophies:

To the champion and 2nd place teams

Plaques:

To the semifinalist teams

Medals:

To the champion team, 2nd place team, semi-finalists, and quarterfinalists