Preparing Students for Speech and Debate Contest

Your extempore skills are best worked on and enhanced during your school days. It is at this stage that you might be able to decipher, the talent within you and the apt direction, in which it requires polishing. When preparing students for speech and debate contest, whether as parent, teacher, trainer or guide, there are certain important points that you need to keep track of. Here the difference is categorized in two major sections:

Technique for Speech and Debate Contest

Since both the presentation approaches are different, hence their communication sense and demonstration requirements also vary.

While speech is an one to one or one to many conversation scenario. Debate is a more conversant and inter-personal style of talking. Here the contrariety between a monologue and dialogue comes into play.


The conversing and demonstration style in both the cases are vastly different. Moreover the speakers here are not seasoned, they need to be trained, therefore one has to adopt a methodology accordingly.

Here is a detailed overview of what distinguishes the two and the steps to be taken for corresponding preparation:

Selecting the topic for the Speech or Debate Contest

Acquaintance and subsequent understanding of the subject is important in both the scenarios. The student must be able to interpret and analyze the core meaning of the title, he is to present his ideas on.

The Debate

In this competition the learner should be well-acquainted with his stand, i.e. whether he is for or against the motion of the house. Although you must tell him about both the sides of the coin, so that he has an idea of what points the opposition might put forward, yet do not confuse him with an overdose.

The Speech

In a speech, the pupil gets a chance to cover both the pros and cons of  the given topic, unless it does not pertain to something like that. Here you can be more creative with your ideas for you have a larger realm to cover. But make sure not to dive too deep, the novice might not be able to take it all.

Content (Pronunciation and Terminology)

This pays a crucial role in your presentation technique in both the scenarios. Here one more factor needs to be taken into account, the age-group your apprentice belongs to. The level of your writing should depend on the academic standard of the student.


Since this is more about argumentation, therefore articulation should be there but more stress should be given on the demonstration of facts and information. Your content needs to have a more conversational effect and if possible the scholar can also take down some points put forward by the other team and contradict it accordingly.


In a speech articulation and voice modulation play an important role, for you are the sole speaker the audience is listening to at the moment. Here one person needs to create and maintain the interest till the end, therefore you do have to make best use of your conversational talent.

Practicing Style

Even the exercises and skill sharpening style in both the cases vary a lot. The tactics applied are different, so are their implications. Although practicing in front of the mirror is an exercise, which might be applied by both the types of speakers.


Here the student needs to practice with a fake opponent so that he is able to get an idea of, all that might be put forward and how to controvert the other speaker.


While giving a speech, your body language is important as well as your speaking style, hence listening to their own voice properly is important for the student.

With these distinguishing factors in mind, one can easily, train himself or guide others.

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