NITOC 2015 Debate Timing Guidelines

A Simple Idea

Stoa is proud to have some of the finest debaters in the country. We appreciate the excellence and integrity that you bring to our forensics. However, in the last year, we have observed an increasing trend of debaters going over time in speeches, by ten to even sixty seconds. If a team consistently takes an extra 15 seconds per speech, they gain an additional two minutes, with the judge, during the round. We all know what an advanced debater can do with an extra minute or two of speaking time in a round.

A Simple Truth

Stoa has very few rules, by design. We want you to have the greatest possible latitude to explore your topic and develop your argumentation. But time limits on speeches are one of the few things specifically set out in the Stoa rules. They ensure the competitive equity in the round.

Here is the text from the Stoa rule which is the standard for NITOC.

Once time is expired at the end of a speech or cross-examination, a speaker may be allowed to complete a sentence, but should not start a new thought.

A Smart Plan

In addition, please take note of the following self-timing policy for all forms of debate at NITOC 2015.

In order to keep the tournament on time, all debaters at NITOC—Parli, TP and LD—must be ready to self time. Each debate team must have a working time piece in every round.

Debaters should set the timer to time down and to provide an audible alarm when time is over. You may not turn off the timer and continue talking.

Opponent(s) may also set a timer and are encouraged to do so. The opponent(s) timer can also be set to countdown mode and may have an audible alarm.

Debaters will have a time assigned for Debate Finals.

Please help us make NITOC conflict free by observing speech time limits in your rounds.

We are looking forward to seeing some amazing debate in Greenville!

NITOC 2015 Speech Timing Guidelines

The NITOC 2015 staff and your StoaBoard are doing our best to ensure that NITOC 2015 will be a fantastic experience for every Stoa competitor, family and volunteer.

As in previous years, we plan to have assigned timers in each limited prep speech event. They will utilize hand signals as they count down your limited prep speech. However, in our platform & interpretive events, we plan to implement the use of a 'head judge' time keeper in each room. This judge will manage the 'stop-start' timing for the speech and announce to the judges and competitor the speech duration. The judge will receive an instruction card with their ballot to ensure they understand this responsibility. Many of our excellent Stoa tournaments have utilized this practice successfully throughout the year so we are excited to incorporate it in NITOC 2015.

Please refer to short timing video
Speech Events- Timer volunteers will be assigned in limited prep speech rooms. One of the judges will be requested to provide timing for platform & interpretive rooms.

Timers are needed starting on Tuesday for preliminary Speech rounds

If you are available to time, please go to Timer Registration and sign up now. We prefer our timekeeper volunteers to be ages 9 years & older and look at the timer position as a great opportunity for students or younger siblings to serve & watch some of the 'cream of the crop' competition at NITOC.
Please register any experienced timekeeper volunteers ages 9 years and older that are coming with you under the Timer Registration tab at the top of this page.

Timer training will be provided on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday

and Friday at Noon. Timers please check-in to the timer table to receive your training the day before you are scheduled to time.

Family members and friends may also participate as timekeepers. After all ballots have been assigned for each round, parents are encouraged to see if they are needed for timing. Remember timing does not replace your judging commitment, but is very much appreciated.

During the tournament, timekeepers should check in at least 30 minutes prior to the beginning of each speech round (and debate finals). Our goal is to provide a timer for every limited prep event and for debate finals.
For questions about Time Keeping, contact Cindy Wentworth at scwentworth@juno.com