Rule Changes 2016 - 2017

Please note the following matters. In some cases they represent changes to the competition introduced in 2016 - 2017, or in recent years.


Topic Distribution for Years 7

  • Year 7 will have a list of three published topics per Topic Area. These topics will be released early in the week of the round. Debaters will be told on the night which of the three topics is to be debated.
  • Year 810 and Senior topics will be released on the evening.
Notes and Phones in Preparation
  • No notes/fact sheets may be taken into preparation rooms, although a dictionary is allowed (Host co-ordinators may check this). No phones or internet connected devices are permitted in preparation rooms.
  • Two separate coin tosses will determine Aff/Neg for junior and senior debates.
  • The side who wins the toss will affirm in the As/Cs & 1st/3rds and negate in the Bs & 2nds/4ths.
  • There will be a first coin toss at 5:30pm for the junior debates and a second coin toss at 6:20pm for the senior debates,

Speaking Times

  • Year 7   : 34 minutes
  • Year 8   : 4–5 minutes
  • Year 9   : 46 minutes
  • Year 10 : 57 minutes
  • 1st-4th  : 57 minutes

Warning bells rung one minute after the maximum times above indicate excessive length.

Silent Speakers

  • All teams (including Firsts) may include a silent ("fourth") speaker, but need not do so. The fourth speaker may attend prep and sit with their team during the debate.

Palm Cards

  • In 2017 Year 79 Debaters may use Palm cards, but this is NOT required. Those using clipboards and table tops in particular are reminded to maintain eye contact.
  • Debaters are reminded that debates are won by communicating an argument, which requires engaging the audience.

Starting Times

  • Preparation for Year 79 begins at 5:45pm; debates commence at 6:30pm.   Preparation is 45 minutes. Junior debaters should arrive by 5:20 for topic distribution.
  • Preparation for Year 10Seniors begins at 6:30pm; debates commence at 7:30pm.  Preparation is 60 minutes. Senior debaters should arrive by 6:10 for topic distribution.
  • Be aware that special rescheduled debates may not follow these starting times.