The Topic:

Easier - A debate is a discussion between sides with different views. Persons speak for or against something before making a decision.
Harder - Two thousand years ago, citizens of Athens held regularly scheduled public assemblies. Peoples' votes determined the policies and actions of the state. Citizens decided whether Athens went to war and how it fought. They created the laws that impacted their daily life. But the votes were always preceded by debates where citizens and leaders argued about the right choices, what was morally and legally right, the best way to achieve a desired outcome, and what was possible and prudent.
Debates are a means of encouraging critical thinking, personal expression, and tolerance of others' opinions. Today, debate still remains essential to democracy. Debates are conducted in governing assemblies, held in lecture halls and public arenas, presented in schools and universities, written in newspaper and magazine columns, heard on radio, or seen on the television. Like our predecessors in ancient Greece, people argue about what is best for their societies and shape the course of law, policy, and action.
Debate Central by A. Snyder
This huge site contains debate instruction, debate topics, online debates, techniques, information and resources for both coaches and students.
Debate Comic Book Project
Here comic strips are used to facilitate the debate of political issues. Students are introduced to the art of argumentation as cogent arguments are invented and placed into debate.
International Debate Education Association
(Formerly the Open Society Institute's Karl Popper Debate Program)
This is the website of an organization of national debate programs and associations and other organizations and individuals that support debate.
Other Debate Organizations:
2) National Forensic League (Note: Visit NFL's Online Rostrum Library)
3) National Parliamentary Debate Association
Speech and Debate Hall of Fame from Information Press
Here you find transcripts and debate evidence from Lincoln-Douglas, Nixon-Kennedy, Churchill, Franklin, Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas, more.
After visiting several of the debate websites, complete one or more of these activities.
Compose a List of Debate Dos and Don'ts. Put together a list of action dos and don'ts for debaters. Display your list in a chart.
Pick a Topic for Debate. You can find sources for possible issues at an Eduscape's companion site, Teacher Tap's Learning Resources: News Sources. Find and select a current event issues and debate the topic.
Debate Capital Punishment. You can find help with debate evidence at the 42eXplore Capital Punishment project. Another 42eXplore project that could be used for debate is Global Warming.
Form a Debate Group. First see if there is a debate group already in your community; look at your school or find out if their is a local Toastmasters group. If not, you may want to form your own debate group. You can find some startup assistance ideas at Debate Society Creation.
Create a Guidelines List for Debate. Put together your own list of guidelines for conducting a debate. Publish your list so that others can use it. An alternative activity would be to develop a list of guidelines for conducting an online debate. You may find some ideas at Online Debate.
Identify the Top Ten Debate Strategies. Start by identifying and defining as many debate strategies that you can find. Then select the top ten strategies and explain how and why they should be used.
Websites By Kids For Kids
Debate Deconstructed (1999 ThinkQuest Internet Challenge)
This site explains the mechanics and functions of formal debating, and attempts to show how debate is closely linked to our daily life.
Debate Director (2000 ThinkQuest Internet Challenge)
The creators of this site describe debating as the 'smashing splish splash clash.' Sometimes you go against the flow or shoot the rapids, and sometimes you're swimming with the sharks. The site is about debate using the Internet as the medium.
More Debate Websites
British Debate
This site is useful to both those who participate in debate and those who teach debate.
Not To Be Missed Section:
2) Resources For Debaters
Debate Online by Stockdale High School Forensics in Bakersfield, California
This 'theme-site' cloaked in the wrappings of a fifties-styled drive-up diner offers debate resources in a clever fashion.
Here you find a debate archives, an evidence exchange, and chats for high school debaters.
Related Websites:
2) Cali's Speech and Debate Ring
3) CX-L Archives
Paradigm Research
Here is another online resource for debaters.
Not To Be Missed Websection:
2) Hitchhiker Debate
Policy and Lincoln Douglas Debate Headquarters
Here you find useful information for Lincoln Douglas and team debaters.
Other Lincoln Douglas Debate Websites:
2) Agglomeration
3) Crash-Course Guide to Lincoln-Douglas Debate
4) Leslie's Debate Page
5) LDDebate (Includes great links-list)
6) Lincoln-Douglas Debate
How to Debate Better
This is a collection of articles intended to help a novice debater.
Manhattan Chowder and Debate Society
The purpose of this site is to help debaters enjoy the clash and benefits of debate.
Japan Parliamentary Debate
This is the site of a parliamentary debate resource for Japanese university and high school students.
West Coast Debate
This is another comprehensive high school debate site containing information, resources, and lots of links.
Related Website:
2) California High School Speech Association
Websites For Teachers
Classroom Lincoln-Douglas Debate (Grades 6-12)
Students will use research skills to understand a position well enough to respond to arguments against it.
Debate Lessons
Here is a collection of lessons and activities for debate. They were created for ESL, EFL curriculum.
Effective Speaking in a Debate by P. Kretsch (Grades 9-12)
The purpose of this lesson is to improve debating skills by confronting stage fright, thereby, allowing the debater to effectively present arguments.
Guidelines for Conducting a Debate
Here you find guidelines for conducting a classroom debate. The site also includes some links to debate lessons and activities; however, several links are out-of-date.
Related Guidelines:
2) First Steps to Debate by M. Higuchi
3) Preparing for the Debate
4) Debate (format)
5) Scoring Guide for Judges
Mock Senate Debate by H. Bonner (Grades 8-11)
This activity is a role play of a Senate debate on bills suggested to remedy a social problem.
Political Nightmares - Discussion and Debate Lesson
This debate lesson originally designed for advanced level ESL, EFL, and TEFL English Classes involves learners in discussion, expressing opinions, agreeing and disagreeing.
Writing Argumentative Essays
This lesson has students pick an issue or position and find reasons to support their conclusions. They research their topics to gather facts supporting their positions. Then students write an argumentative essay defending their positions.
Related Websites:
2) Analysis of Arguments
3) Argument Formation
formal discussion
refute argument
public speaking
policy debate
parliamentary debate
Lincoln/Douglas Debate
causal chain
factual claim
value claim
policy claim
Created by Annette Lamb and Larry Johnson, 6/01.