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Carthage Novice Tournament

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General information

This is a High School tournament in Missouri.

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Rules and Regulations

        1. A student may not enter more than one division of debate.  Two IE’s may be entered but not both types of extemp.

  1. A novice is a first year competitor. Any 9-12 tournaments competed at last year means you are not a novice.
  1. Coaches may be used as judges.  Failure to meet judging assignments will result in forfeiture of one of your teams for that round.
  1. Individual Event finalists will receive trophies/medals. Debate will place the top eight based off prelim competition. 
  1. Schools will be financially responsible for their entries after the entry deadline. Additional entries will NOT be granted. 
  1. All teams must remain constant in personnel throughout the tournament.  There can be no one person teams unless permission is granted by the tournament director.
  1. It is my intention to allow internet access throughout the tournament.  Please use the internet in accordance to MSHSAA rules and in the spirit in which it is intended.
  1. A team more than 10 minutes late to a round will forfeit unless it is the fault of the tournament.
  1. In later rounds or smaller entry events, teams from the same school may be paired against one another during power matching on both ends of the spectrum.

Individual Events Rules

MSHSAA rules apply for all MSHSAA events.


1.         Extemp: Topics will be current events on National and International issues.  Time limit is 7 minutes. No notes/cards may be used during speeches.  A student may not be entered in both IX and USX.

2.         Oratory: The speech must be written by the student. It must be memorized.  Time limit is 10 minutes. No more than 150 words may be direct quotation.

3.         Interpretation: Selections must be memorized and have literary merit.  Time limit is 10 minutes. 

4.         Storytelling: Must be narrated in the student’s own words; the student must SIT in a tournament provided chair for the performance. Story should be intended for children. Time limit is 8 minutes.

5.         Prose or Poetry: Selections for prose should come from an appropriate source and not contain more than 50% dialogue. Selections from poetry should be published poems. Both categories should be read and not fully memorized. Students will choose either their prose or poetry selection and use that for all rounds. COMBINED/POI ENTRIES WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED IN ANY ROUND! Time limit is 8 min.

6.         Informative Speaking:  The speech must be the original work of the student and may contain no more than 150 words of direct quotation.  Time limit:  10 minutes. You can use visual aides. See MSHSAA rules on visual aides.



  • Time limits will be 6-3-7-3-4-6-3.  Prep time: 4 minutes.
  • Rounds will be flighted and will take place during other debate rounds.
  • The topic for both Varsity and Novice will be: 2021 September/October Topic Resolved: The member nations of the World Trade Organization ought to reduce intellectual property protections for medicines.


  • Format:  2-person teams.  Rounds will be flighted and will take place during other debate rounds.
  • Time limits will be 4-4-3-4-4-3-3-3-3-2-2 Prep time: 3 minutes.
  • The topic will be the  Public Forum topic, 2021 September/October Topic Resolved: The North Atlantic Treaty Organization should substantially increase its defense commitments to the Baltic states.
  • Each round shall begin with a coin toss.  The winner of the toss may select the side (pro or con) OR select the speaker order (begins the debate or has last speech).  The loser of the toss chooses speaker order (if the winner has chosen side of the topic) OR chooses side (if winner has chosen speaker order).  Please note: The negative may begin the debate as first speaker and argue against the topic.
  • The CX periods are crossfire periods and both speakers may ask and answer questions in a polite but argumentative exchange.
  • No plans, counterplans, kritiks, or spreading are allowed.

Student Judge Regulations

  1. No oral critiques are allowed even if they are asked for.  Ballots are provided for comments.  Please tell your novice debaters not to ask for oral comments.
  1. Since debate is oral communication, judges are to refrain from reading any evidence after the round unless the truth of the evidence or its misrepresentation has been challenged by the opposing team in the round.
  1. Judges will also serve as the timekeepers for the rounds.  Since judges will be on their laptops, please make sure that they are paying attention to the round.
  1. Instruct your student judges not to switch assignments with other judges.  This causes us to run behind and creates issues later on with assignments.


Manager contact information

Bryan Whyte
Email address: whyteb@carthagetigers.org
Phone number: 417-540-0187

Mailing address

2600 South River Street
Carthage, MO 64836

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