CONTACT: CATHY CLEMONS
100 Old Public Library
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 384-0008; fax (319) 384-0024
High school debaters to attend national institute at UI this summer
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- High school debaters and forensics teachers from across
the country will converge on the University of Iowa campus this June for a
unique kind of summer camp, the 66th annual National Summer Institute in Forensics.
The Institute, which begins Monday, June 23, offers three workshops for debaters
and teachers of all experience levels: "Policy," "Lincoln-Douglas
Debate" and the "Teacher's Institute." Each workshop consists
of daily classroom laboratory work in such areas as research, analysis, persuasion,
delivery and argumentation, plus opportunities for small group discussions.
The deadline for applications is Thursday, May 1. Application forms are available
by writing to the A. Craig Baird Debate Forum, 12 International Center, University
of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa 52242 or by calling the Forum office at (319)335-0621.
"The Institute is an invaluable experience," said Institute Director
Paul Slappey. "It provides students with an opportunity to interact with
a diverse population as well as an opportunity to engage in an intense program
devoted to preparation for debate and argumentation. Students learn skills
that will assist them forever."
The three-week long Policy workshop emphasizes skills such as how to analyze
cases, make and analyze arguments, conduct research and use evidence. It also
includes classes and lectures on argument theory and practice tips, and students
participate in practice workshops. The Lincoln-Douglas Debate workshop runs
for about two weeks and focuses on a specific style of debate known as the
Lincoln-Douglas format. Participants learn skills such as strategy development
and effective cross-examination, refutation and delivery.
The Teacher's Institute, titled "Workshop in the Teaching of Communication
and Forensics," is two weeks long and worth three hours of graduate credit.
It will focus on the teaching, coaching, judging and directing of debate and
speech activities and is geared towards forensics teachers with a wide range
of experiences. Participants also will have access to classroom and laboratory
materials from the Policy and Lincoln-Douglas Debate workshops, plus opportunities
to hear special guest lecturers.
The National Summer Institute in Forensics is funded by the National Forensic
League's Phillips Petroleum grant and the UI Opportunity at Iowa program.
The A. Craig Baird Debate Forum is the formal name of the UI debate team,
whose members have acquired a national reputation for excellence in the forensics
discipline. The Forum has qualified 36 teams in the last 25 years to compete
in the National Debate Tournament, the nation's premiere collegiate debate
competition. In 1996 a freshman team member reached the final round of the
tournament, and last month a UI junior at the competition won the Top Speaker
Award, the highest honor given in the field.
The team, which celebrated its 100th anniversary in 1993, is named after
former UI professor A. Craig Baird, known widely as the father of modern debate.
During his 50-year career as a scholar, Baird founded the nation's first international
debate program, authored and edited more than 100 books on speech, debate
and communication, and taught thousands of students skills in those areas.
(EDITOR'S NOTE: If you would like to pursue this story, either by attending
a session and/or by interviewing one or more participants from Iowa and other
Paul Slappey, director of the National Summer Institute in Forensics, at
(319)335-0621. You also are welcome to shoot photos or video.)