Speech & Debate

One-semester course. In this course students will be introduced to speech and debate techniques through the analysis of an assortment of readings and the completion of various writing and speaking exercises. We will begin our discussion with the pillars of rhetoric and their roles in both speech and debate, and then explore ways to recognize and evaluate various forms of claims, arguments, and evidence; to build solid arguments (including the research and planning stages of an argument); to develop (or improve on) critical thinking skills through the use of analysis, clear reasoning, and evidence in refutation of an opponent’s arguments; and to engage in effective argument and debate with others. This skills-based course is meant to help students become confident public speakers through practice.  Assignments will include presentations of persuasive speeches, Lincoln-Douglass debates, and parliamentary debates.


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Speech & Debate Information




  • Example Syllabus
  • Class meets once per week for 50-55 minutes.
  • Class cap: 15 students.
  • Designed for grades 9-12.
  • High school students may be awarded .5 Elective credit upon completion of this course.

Course Materials




  • The instructor will provide all course materials.


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