Author Topic: 2012 NDT Newsletter  (Read 3396 times)

John Fritch

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2012 NDT Newsletter
« on: January 27, 2012, 05:10:34 PM »

January, 2012

Dear Colleague:

Plans are nearing completion for the 66th National Debate Tournament to be hosted by Emory University and the Barkley Forum. Registration for the tournament will take place on THURSDAY, March 29. Competition will take place on Friday, March 30, through Monday, April 2. All competition will take place at the Atlanta Marriott Gwinnett Place, the tournament hotel.

This brief letter will provide information on the tournament location, qualifying processes, eligibility certification, and entry for the tournament

TOURNAMENT HOTEL. The tournament hotel is:

Atlanta Marriott Gwinnett Place, 1775 Pleasant Hill Road, Duluth GA 30096

Registration, banquets, preliminary debates, and elimination rounds will be held at the tournament hotel.  We would recommend that you reserve rooms as soon as your teams have qualified.  We have secured a tournament rate of $99 per night for up to 4 people per room, which includes Internet access and self-parking.  Reservations must be made before March 15, 2012 to obtain the rate.  You can make your reservations now by clicking on or copying and pasting this link into your browser. If you prefer making reservations by phone call: 1-866-339-3132.  Make sure to identify yourself as attending the National Debate Tournament.


1.   Please examine the dates for first and second round applications. The dates in relation to the NDT have been changed relative to last year.

2.   The 2012 NDT is the second year hybrid teams may qualify for the tournament. In order to be eligible, hybrid teams must comply with all appropriate rules. Please see the NDT Standing Rules. In addition, notification must be provided to Tim O’Donnell, chair of the NDT Committee, no later than February 1.

3.   The following rule change is effective for the 2012 NDT. The NDT Committee passed the following amendment to the qualifying procedures. “Districts choosing to select representatives for the NDT in a manner other than a qualifying debate tournament will be allowed to submit only those teams over a 40% win-loss record for the purposes of bid allocation. If a district makes a good faith attempt (evidence of planning or economic commitments) to host a tournament, but cancels the tournament because weather would make travel unsafe, that district shall not lose allocated bids due to this rule. In this event, the District Chair must notify the Bid Allocation Committee, who will confirm that the situation appears to be a good faith cancellation. The decision of the Bid Allocation committee is final, but must be publicized to the broader community. If a member of the Bid Allocation committee is from the district, the NDT chair will appoint a replacement member for any deliberations.”


1.   All debates are governed by the rules of the National Debate Tournament and the American Forensics Association. The documents governing the administration of the National Debate Tournament may be found at

2.   Effective with the 2007 NDT, teams qualifying for the tournament must provide 13 rounds of judging.

3.   Individuals in attendance at the National Debate Tournament who provide significant coaching to, or argument production for, any team participating in the NDT should be required to enter the judging pool on a supplemental strike sheet for at least four debates or, if it is more appropriate, provide a significant equivalent contribution to the tournament as defined by the tournament host or director.

QUALIFICATION PROCESS.  The selection process, altered before the 1994 NDT and 1999  NDT remains in place for the 2012 NDT.  A complete set of the NDT rules and procedures may be found at

AT LARGE APPLICATION PROCESS.  The process for first and second round at large bids will be the same as that established in 2004.  The number of preliminary rounds required for a team to count toward bid allocations is 18.  All teams selected through the Second Round At-Large process must have a 50% or greater preliminary round win-loss record in rounds on the fall CEDA topic or its NDT topic parallel immediately prior to the District tournament or at the time of submission for second round bids.  Those subscribing schools wishing to nominate their teams for At-Large consideration must submit copies of their completed electronic Official NDT At-Large Application (without covering letters or other supplementary materials). Applications must be received by the dates listed below. Schools submitting at-large applications must have paid their NDT subscription fee prior to submitting their application for the bid to be considered. In addition, all teams wishing to be considered for an at-large bid must pay $50.00 to the treasurer of the NDT Board of Trustees. A system has been set up to pay using Paypal at, or the treasurer also will accept a check or money order made out to the NDT, RECEIVED BY THE APPLICATION DEADLINE, sent to the following address:

Sherry Hall
324 Franklin Street
Cambridge, MA  02139

The electronic at-large bid form may be found at: The bid forms may be found under the Account Management link.

ENTERING THE TOURNAMENT.  ENTRIES ARE DUE MONDAY, MARCH 19, 2012. Online entries will be accepted using the web site and methods used for many invitational tournaments during the year. The web site may be found at

JUDGING PHILOSOPHIES. Judging philosophies should be posted to no later than MARCH 19, 2012. Judging philosophies may be edited at the same site by clicking on the "Enter, edit, and remove the names of judges and competitors (and enter or edit judge philosophies)" link in the account management box in the top-left.

The NDT may impose a $50 fine on institutions which have not supplied judging philosophies by MARCH 19. The NDT may impose an additional $50 fine if judging philosophies are not available at the time of registration.

FEES.  The Board of Trustees has set the fees for the 2012 NDT. The fees are $100.00 per team. Participant fees for debaters and judges—four people for each team in the tournament will be no more than $50. The fees for observers (all other persons with your group over the four per team that count as participants) will be $135.00. Persons traveling with the team will be charged for the banquets and other meal functions.

        Attached you will find a tentative tournament schedule, contact information for the Chair of the NDT Tournament Committee, and a copy of the NDT judge philosophy form.

Please join us in Atlanta for the 66th National Debate Tournament.


John Fritch
Director, National Debate Tournament

                                TENTATIVE TOURNAMENT SCHEDULE

Thursday, March 29
        9:00-11:00         Registration
        11:00 - 2:00       NDT Board of Trustees Meeting
        1:00-4:00          NDT Committee Meeting
        4:00-5:00          Late Registration
        6:30               Reception and Pre-Tournament Awards

Friday, March 30         
          7:45 AM            Continental Breakfast
           8:00               Announcement of Round I
          11:45           Announcement of Round II
   2:00 PM   Lunch
           4:15      Announcement of Round III       

Saturday, March 31

   7:45 AM            Continental Breakfast
8:00       Announcement of Round IV
   11:15      Lunch
   12:30 PM   Announcement of Round V
   5:00      Announcement of Round VI

Sunday, April 1

   7:45 AM            Continental Breakfast
8:00       Announcement of Round VII
   11:15      Lunch
   12:30 PM   Announcement of Round VIII
    4:45      Announcement of First Elimination Round
    9:30       Awards Banquet

Monday, April 2   

           7:15 AM    Drawing of Octofinal judges
          7:30               Announcement of Octofinals
           8:00               Octofinal round begins
                           (Rounds continue throughout the day)

                        FIRST ROUND AT LARGE BIDS

Must be received by
        Committee Members                          February 16 (5PM CST)
Committee calls or e-mail to Director              February 17-19
Director Announces                                February 20

                        DISTRICT PROCEDURES

Declaration of intent to attend District           February 21
Announcement of preliminary district bids   February 22
                        SECOND ROUND AT LARGE BIDS

Must be received by
        Committee Members                          March 8 (5 PM CST)
Committee calls or e-mail to Director              March 9-11
Director announces                                 March 12           


Dr. Timothy O’Donnell, NDT Chair
University of Mary Washington
Department of English, Linguistics, and Communication
1301 College Ave.
Fredericksburg, VA 22401

Office Phone: 540-654-1252
Revised 2-16-94

NAME _______________________   INSTITUTION _____________________________

POSITION _______________________   YEARS OF COACHING _______________

NUMBER OF TOURNAMENTS THIS YEAR _______________________

The following questions represent some of the issues you may want to discuss in your judge philosophy.  They serve as a guideline.  Please try to make the philosophy relevant AS APPLICABLE to the current topic.  It is understood that many of your positions may be altered by specific situations.  Please limit yourself to ONE photocopy ready page.  The left hand margin should be one (1) inch.

Theory: 1. What decision making paradigm do you use?  2. What are your standards for the evaluation of T?  3. What are your standards for counterplans (especially topical Cps, conditionally, international fiat, Agent of Action, and permutations)?  4. How do you react to new cases at the NDT?

Topic Specific Arguments: 1. Which T violations do you like/dislike? How is T evaluated?  2. What are your preferences for disads? Counterplans?

Critiques/Deontology: 1. Do you like them?   2. What standards do you use to evaluate them?  3. How do they weigh against other impacts?

Evidence: 1. Do you read evidence after a round?  2. What are your standards of evaluation?  3. Do you require full cites to be read?  How does that affect your evaluation of evidence?  4. What are your standards for an evidence challenge?

Style: 1. What, if anything, do you do to encourage comprehensible speaking?  2. What constitutes an argument?  3. Do you find tag-team CX objectionable?  4. What behavior or mannerisms do you find objectionable?