Public Forum Debate 

Please note: 4n6u is in transition. We are working on getting content up as quickly as we can, but we have very grand plans, and we are a volunteer program. Please be patient with us as we start to get things up as efficiently as possible. 

Public Forum Debate is a two versus two delve into a policy issue.  In this debate, the two teams discuss an issue from both sides. In this debate, the speakers are compelled to present their arguments in a way that is able to be understood by the 'lay' or non-debate judge. 

  • Debate should be logical, well reasoned, and have a well thought out case.

  • Debate should stay within the specified Time Limits.

  • Debate should present two distinct sides or 'clash' on the issue.

  • Debate should be presented with clarity, forethought, and a solid understanding of language.

Key Info to Know 

The topics are worded as 'resolutions,' meaning that the debaters are solving a problem. They do this by advocating a position. 

  • PF Ballots *note - these links are external, clicking them means you're leaving and going to their originating institution.

Hand Outs   

Cross Examination - How to attack it.  - This handout is used to help students get a little more comfortable with the cross ex portion of debate. 

Important Debate Terms to Know - This handout is a solid first look at what some of these things mean. 

Debate Clash Chart - A simple graphic organizer so that students can begin seeing how clash should be presented in round. 

Impact Analysis Chart - A basic chart designed to help students figure out how to weigh impacts in the round. 

Flowing - Taking notes in round is one of the most important aspects of debate.


The Responsibilities

PF is made up of 8 total speeches and 3 crossfires, or cross examination periods. This means that each teammate speaks twice, once for 4 minutes, and once for 2 minutes, making them responsible for a little over 6 minutes worth of content. Each speaker should also be ready to ask questions to help further their cause, and be knowledgeable enough to answer questions in a reasonable manner.