24 November 2008

Discussion and Debate II

In part two of the course, more emphasis is placed on skills (debating) (part one concerned content ). These skills are for students to become (1) in-depth researchers, (2) technical and persuasive writers, (3) effective communicators, and (4) perceptive listeners. Too much of the educational process involves teachers telling students what to think. Thus education becomes a dull process of memorizing mountains of facts. Competitive debate takes a different approach: it teaches students how to think. The thought process begins by gathering evidence with an open mind (Edwards).

Discussion and Debate provides mental fitness and fun. It is a forum to flush-out bad ideas. The course,
built in integrity, upholds character development. We believe dispute is a powerful teacher. Mental challenges in a group context offer competitors the opportunity to mature leadership skills, self-confidence, and a commitment to others that will rouse them to lead productive lives. Debate
includes practice in the manners of common social interactions. Proficiency is reinforced through reading in multiple areas of cultural studies. The class will include some speech etiquette in social exchanges. Classroom debating will help students grasp many essential critical thinking and presentation skills. Rapid exchanges will help develop clear reasoning, confidence, and partnerships.

Part two will begin on Thursday, 27 November, and will end on Thursday, 11 December. No class Monday, 1 December. Course enrollment will be enlarged to sixteen.

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