3AIMS OF CURRENT AFFAIRS DEBATES They aim to:Groom confident speakers.Encourage students to read widely on current issues.Help students to take multiple perspectives on a topic.Foster analytical skills through research and discussion.Provide an open environment for voicing opinions.
4Assessment Structure – Sec 1 ACADEMIC ASSESSMENTSSCHOLASTIC ASSESSMENTSFormative Assessments (10%)Common Tests (20%)Final Exams (70%)TOTAL = 100%Academic MSG- Mean subject grade of all academic subjects except OC & ISOral CommunicationsOral Participation (40%)Current Affairs (Chinese) (30%)Current Affairs (English) (30%)2. Independent StudiesProject Work (100%)Scholastic MSG- Mean subject grade of all academic subjects, Oral Communications and Independent Studies.
5Assessment Structure – Sec 2,3 & 4 ACADEMIC ASSESSMENTSSCHOLASTIC ASSESSMENTSClass/Common Tests (30%)Final Exams (70%)TOTAL = 100%Academic MSG- Mean subject grade of all academic subjects except OC & ISOral CommunicationsOral Participation (40%)Current Affairs (Chinese) (30%)Current Affairs (English) (30%)2. Independent StudiesProject Work (100%)Scholastic MSG- Mean subject grade of all academic subjects, Oral Communications and Independent Studies.
7Who are involved in a debate? ChairmanEnsures the proper proceedings of the debate.Proposition teamAgrees with the motion.Opposition teamDisagrees with the motion.Adjudicators/Judges1 teacher or 2 school debaters(students) acting as adjudicators.Timekeeper
8The Set-Up Chairman Timekeeper Proposition Opposition Adjudicators 4 3 211234AudienceAudience
9Rules and Scoring Four speakers per team Each speaker will make a 3 – 5 minute speechMarks will be deducted for not reaching the 3 minute requirement or exceeding the time limitThere will be no Points of Information in this debate.Speakers will be judged according to the following criteria:Style – 40%Content – 40%Strategy – 20%Total – 100%
10Format The speakers will make their speech in the following order: Note: Proposition team will start and end the speeches.First PropositionFirst OppositionSecond PropositionSecond OppositionThird PropositionThird OppositionFourth OppositionFourth Proposition
12Firstly, as a class you have to select: 1) chairpersons and timekeepers.2) students to set the classroom up for the debate.3) students to make up teams of 4 each.4) topics to match the teams.The English Language Representative is to ensure that all these arrangements are made by Week 4, 29th Jan 2014 and ed to Mdm Jeya atHe will also write the speakers’ names on the whiteboard together with the motion for the day on the day of the debate.Please be reminded that the adjudicators’ role is only to adjudicate and not to help you with the above.
13Before the debate itself Conduct research on the motion you are givenDefine your motion.Develop your case, arguments and examples.Use a wide variety of sources eg. Internet, encyclopedias, newspapers, journals etc. to obtain facts, statistics and other examples to support your arguments.Try to imagine how the opposing team will structure their casePrepare counter-arguments to attack the opposing team’s arguments.
14Before the debate Constructing cases A case is the essence of what the team is arguing.The case must support the team’s side of the motion.A single case is supported by different arguments, and each argument is supported by examples.Each member should argue for the same case to ensure consistency.
15Using notesYou may list the points of what you are going to say on a cue card or small piece of paper but not on an A4-sized paper.Do not read the speech from your notes.Maintain eye contact.Add any counter-argument to the notes as and when you think of it.
16Making your speechIntroduce the points you are going to cover at the beginning.Explain your arguments in a clear manner;Title, Definitions, Reason, Evidence, Significance, etc.Time ManagementUse more time to explain and elaborate important points.Summarise your points at the end.
17Debate Topics for 2014 – Lower Sec Lower Sec Debates Topics - Local Issues1) This House would ban online anonymity.2) This House believes that the import of foreign labor is more of a boon than a bane.3) This House believes that the tech-savvy youth are increasingly bereft of good social values.4) This House believes that Singaporeans should be less competitive.5) This House would abolish the death penalty.6) This House believes that the government should spend less money on the arts.7) This House believes that more emphasis should be placed on the humanities in local schools’ core curriculum.8) This House would repeal section 377A of the penal code.
18Debate topics for 2014 – Upper Sec Upper Sec Debates Topics – Regional & Global Issues 1) This House believes that whistleblowers should be granted asylum. 2) This House believes that civilians should not be permitted to own firearms. 3) This House believes that Jerusalem should be divided. 4) This House believes that cosmetic surgery is wrong. 5) This House believes that socialism is an outdated concept. 6) This House believes that a policy of non-intervention should be upheld in international relations. 7) This House believes that anti-government protests are ineffective.
19Debate TopicsMay be amended after discussions with respective EL teachers.
21Assessment Criteria Style (40 marks) Content (40 marks) The content of the speech will be ignored when judging style.Delivery (fluency, audibility, tone variance, eye contact, etiquette, etc.)Reading of speeches from notes will be penalised.Content (40 marks)The speech will be assessed purely as a written argument.Analysis, evidence, relevance, etc.Strategy (20 marks)Structure and timing, roles of speakers, teamwork, issues identified, etc.
23Debates Sabbaticals 2014 To be held in Week 10 of Term 1, 2 and 3. They are for retraining and retesting speakers who did not perform satisfactorily in the CA Debates.These sessions will help you improve on your debate scores.Please register for them to do better in debates.
24Snippets of DebateA look at the Land Transport Debate Championship 2011
25Debates are NOT an avenue for: Assault of any kind (verbal or physical)Unruly behaviourRudenessMaking noiseWARNINGAdjudicators will penalise students who are disruptive by deducting marks from their debate scores.
26Food for a thoughtful debate… A good leader can engage in a debate frankly and thoroughly, knowing that at the end he and the other side must be closer and emerge stronger. You don’t have that idea when you are arrogant, superficial, and uninformed.Nelson Mandela
27Join our wiki for more on the debates! HCI (High School) Current Affairs Wikispace
28REMINDER As a class, please select: 1) chairpersons and timekeepers. 2) students to set the classroom up for the debate.3) students to make up teams of 4 each.4) topics to match the teams.Lower Sec:The English Language Representative is to ensure that all these arrangements are made by Week 4, 29th Jan 2014, and the information to Mdm Jeya atUpper Sec:The English Language Representative is to ensure that all these arrangements are made by Week 8, 28th Feb 2014, and the information to Mdm Hema at
29Calling All EL Representatives! Please see me after the briefing.