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November 22, 2012 / compassioninpolitics

The ultimate negative strategy question and checklist for policy debaters

Here are the 21 questions each 2NC must answer in order to be able to compete competitively in policy debate. Answering them by yourself, with a partner, or with your coach or with other debaters is critical to being able to win competitive debates during the season.

What are the 3 to 4 key types of affirmatives on the topic?
What are my go-to strategies versus those affirmatives?
What are the 5 most common affirmatives on the topic? What are their strengths and weaknesses?
What are my strengths and weakness versus those affirmatives?

What is my K strategy (augmented by case-type, as necessary or helpful)?
What is my counterplan + DA strategy (augmented by case-type, as necessary or helpful)?
What is my generic case strategy (augmented by case-type, as necessary or helpful)?
What is my impact defense or impact turn strategy versus the core 8 to 12 impact areas on the topic? (usually it boils down to economy, hegemony, terrorism, warming/environment, etc…so there are really 4)

What is my answer to ethics and rights? What is my defense of utilitarianism?
What is my answer to root cause & ism type arguments?
What is my answer to Ks of impact, prediction, and security in the 2ac?

What is my answer to Ks of T?
How can I answer affs which have a framework–both ways?
How can I defend my theory–in terms of counterplans, critiques, etc…?

How can I balance (in round & out round) those with my partner?
How can I (best) adapt those to our judging pool or an the 3 to 4 judge types I encounter?
How can I adapt the way I run positions and explain them to the least qualified types of judges?

How can I get better at evidence comparison?
How can I get better at impact comparison? How can I ensure my impact comparison is pre-done?
How can I improve my frontlines for the block?

Gut check: how good are each of those? How can I improvement?

Bonus: what is the nexus question? how can I control the nexus question in each debate? (this is kinda tailored specifically to each debate)

Ways to improve:
1. Modeling & patterning
2. Determining the argumentative schema
3. Reading & reflection (on both sides & ahead of time)
4. Figuring out the distinctions that make a difference
5. Quality feedback from an expert
6. Learning more about persuasion, argument, and critical thinking.

* I have a number of other ways to improve on the blog….feel free to search for them using the search box.

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