Ontario Engineering Competition University of Waterloo 2005
University of Waterloo 2005

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The goal of the Parliamentary Debate Category is to encourage undergraduate engineering students to present a well-reasoned viewpoint with a minimum of preparation time. Engineers are often required to evaluate and argue for or against a proposal on short notice. In this category, competitors defend or refute a previously undisclosed resolution using the format of parliamentary style debate.

 Entrance Requirements

 One (1) team per school consisting of up to two (2) people are accepted into Parliamentary Debate.

 Category Format

 Teams in Parliamentary Debate are required to debate resolutions using the format of Parlimentary Style Debate

 The resolutions will be topics related to science, engineering, technology, education, or other topics of direct interest to engineers and engineering students.

 Each team will debate at least four (4) times in the preliminary rounds.

Four teams will proceed to the semi-final round. The semi-finalists will be four teams with the highest total points awarded in the preliminary rounds. In the event that a tie has to be broken, the placing will be determined as follows:

The highest judge's score and lowest judge's score of the tied teams awarded during the preliminary rounds will be deleted and the total points will be recalculated. The team(s) with the corrected highest total points will be placed higher.

 If the tie is still not broken and the tied teams debated each other during the preliminary rounds. The Government, during that debate, will be placed higher if they won that debate.

 If the tie is still not broken, the tie will be broken by a coin toss.

The two teams winning the semi-final round will proceed to the final debate.


 The most important aspects of evaluation in this category are argument and evidence, refutation, organization and analysis, delivery, and ingenuity and wit. Particular attention is given to the summaries presented at the end of the debate. Each speaker on the team is graded out of a total of fifty (50) points for a combined maximum total of one hundred (100) points. In the event of a tie, the debate is awarded to the Government. The team scores will remain confidential.

The marking scheme for the Parliamentary Debate Category is as follows:

 Argument and Evidence - 10 points

  •  Have the important points of the resolution been sufficiently developed?

 Refutation - 10 points

  •  Did the debater address points brought up by the opponent?

Organization and Analysis - 10 points

  •  Were the arguments presented in an ordered and logical manner?

Delivery - 10 points

  • Was the speech clear and precise?
  • Was the debater interesting and entertaining?

 Ingenuity and Wit - 10 points

  •  Did the debater have a unique style?
  •  Did the debater make appropriate use of humor?

 Debaters will be penalized for any Points of Order or Privilege "well taken" against them during the debate. The amount of the penalty is dependent on the severity of the offense and is at the discretion of the judges.

If a team arrives late to the debate, without a valid reason, their preparation time will be reduced by the amount of time they are late. If they arrive after the scheduled starting time of the speeches, without a valid reason, they will forfeit the debate and automatically be assigned a loss. The debaters may present their reason to the speaker of the house who will rule "valid reason", or "invalid reason."



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