My name is Collin Csuy, and I am a chemistry and ap chemistry teacher at West High School in Wausau.

I’m a new advisor with no debate experience,
but I’ve learned a few things in the rounds that I have judged so far.

#1. Evidence is not evidence if read in a manner that is not intelligible.
By all means, feel free to read fast, but a good speaker will annunciate all syllables.
If you think you can win because your opponent may “drop” something, make sure that you put in my mind a point to consider. A summary like, “We have these four arguments in our favor” would show a high-ability skill of analysis rather than the low-skill ability of reading of cards.

#2. Evidence carries no weight if the presenter cannot explain how it bolsters his or her case.
My advice is that you paraphrase what your evidence means (especially if it is not obvious),
and state how such evidence makes your case or refutes the opposition’s case. If doing this takes too much time out of your 8 minute prepared rant, perhaps you can read less of the dribble and read your own prepared words that summarize and make a case. How one card does or does not refute another card is not always obvious to the debater, so the debater who can verbalize an analysis will impress me greatly.

#3 Kritik is, for some reason, bandied about as “good stuff” by veterans. Veterans will also cite the most recent evidence and criticize their opponents use of cards dated a few years ago. If cards with this year’s date on them is best, then Greek philosopher jargon is very outdated.
My advice is that you don’t run a K.

#4. Cross-x is a chance to communicate without reading cards, so make good use of it. It would work for me if you asked your opponent, “What does all that mean, and why should the judge give your arguments any weight?” This could also work for you because if you are asked such a question, you can impress me with your knowledge of your cards and the firmness of your case. I will allow both partners to speak during cross-x as it tends to fill dead time when the one asked has no reply. Tag-team all you want, just don’t carry on two conversations as I can only pay attention to one at a time.