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I for some reason recollect these existing. Do any of your classrooms use them? Does anyone know of any particularly good ones?

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I remember seeing a few somewhere on the internet. I know our squad has none. I feel like the best way to understand debate is just do as many rounds you can.

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Debate changes far too often for text books to be of great use. They can help novices acclimate to the activity in theory, but in practice I've found lectures, practice, and watching rounds is where it's at.

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There are many out there, though few have been written in the last five years. My novice year, I had a textbook called Strategic Debate that was actually pretty good. A friend of mine from GBN gave it to me. Unfortunately, there are several debate texts by that name on Amazon and it was so long ago I don't know which one I used.

 

No big deal. There are actually quite a number of perfectly good debate manuals online.

  • First of all, take a look at the UDL Code of the Debater. It's a rather comprehensive overview for new debaters. This manual of debate is relatively up-to-date and will introduce new debaters to all the important debate concepts an jargon in simple terms.
  • A relatively new (and very good) online debate manual is Stephen Bauschard's Policy Debate 101. One of the nicer things about it is its glossary of debate terms, which includes some 250 entries and definitions.
  • Also good is David Snowball's Theory and Practice in Academic Debate. It's ten years old, so some of the material is completely out of date, but this text should still be useful for getting young brains thinking about what debate is all about. It's a little more difficult to follow than most debate texts, but it goes deeper into some issues (like evidence and judging paradigms) than most introductory works do.
  • Jon Bruschke's Debate Bible also gets high marks for providing solid, simple, and useful answers. It is also a little old, but it is still one of the most practical and readable debate texts online.
  • Whereas most debate manuals try to teach how to answer individual positions (like disads and counterplans), T. Russel Hanes' book Debating Policies focuses more on the skills and techniques debaters need to get started. This is less a reference work than it is a real textbook. It seems to be written for complete beginners.
  • On Wikispaces, the SDI Encyclopedia is a giant (and growing) glossary/encyclopedia of debate terms, critique authors, and common arguments. There are articles for terms as simple as Harms, or as outlandish as Schizopolitics.

 

Also keep in mind Teaching Debate, run by Phil Kerpen (the guy who runs cross-x). It's a clearinghouse for teaching resources that you can browse easily.

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there is a series of books that provide a nice and easy insight into a lot of the popular debate philosophical authors. it's not debate-specific, but it's definitely helpful.

 

it's called "Communican: the great philosopher series."

 

http://www.communican.org

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At Atlantic, they had just stocked up on the 4th Edition of Basic Debate (Phillips/Hicks/Springer) when I hired on, so that is what we use. It is a fine textbook for classroom use. I supplement it with lots of stuff from other texts I've collected over the years...

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After several years of baffling novices with Mastering Competitive Debate (Hensley/Carlin), I've thrown in the towel this year and written my own. It seems to be working pretty well so far, but we'll see what happens when the kids go into competition.

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I have found that that is the fastest way to lose novices, We went from a class of 19 to 10 in one day (It still got watered down)

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Jim Hanson's "Breaking Down Barriers" available thru CDE is the only text I've seen that is both online and, for policy, updated every year for that year's topic. To me, that's worth every penny...

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