by Elizabeth Childs.  

Happy Tuesday!

I hope everyone has had a great weekend in-between reading initial arguments and writing rebuttals! Many thanks to our rebuttal groups for your posts and to all of you for your work thus far. This is shaping up to be an engaging and interesting debate! Well done. Your use of supporting references to provide backing for your points has allowed lots of room for folks to dig deeper as they prepare for the scrum which opens this Thursday May 20th.

The Scrum in our context, allows for any member of the Pro and Con Teams to respond further to anything that has come up in the Opening Remarks (initial Argument) and Formal Rebuttals, reiterate or raise new points that contribute to the positions argument in Scrum itself. The guidelines for our Scrum are as follows:

•   Scrum posts should be less than 250 words, including in text citations and quotations. The reference list is not included in the word count.

•   Anyone member of a Pro or Con Team can post to the scrum.

•   Post in the Assignment Two - Debate Forum (debate happens here)

•   Indicate clearly at the top of your post whether you are Pro (for the motion) or Con (against the motion).

We will leave the Scrum open from Thursday May 20th until Friday May 21st (midnight Pacific time). After this time the formal debate will be "closed" and we will allow time for our judgment team to create their determination and final decision supported with backing and research as required. For those of you who have not done so yet I will put in a gentle reminder for the peer/self assessment piece of this assignment which is due Sunday May 23rd.

This means you have a few days to connect with your sub-team or the larger team for your position (i.e. the Pro initial argument or the whole Pro team) to discuss strategy for how you would like to approach the Scrum.

A note regarding the "judging": Generally in debates used in educational venues like our course, judges are evaluating on the persuasiveness and merit of the arguments offered. They, in their decision, will offer backing and rationale for the points they make and the logic of their decision. The Judges did post the rubric they will be using and they will will no doubt also draw on the assignment rubric as a litmus test of sorts as you offer constructive feedback on such elements as faulty logic, insufficient evidence and arguments debaters may have overlooked. 


We have time next week set aside to debrief the debate itself and I am excited to let you know that we also are able to have our MALAT Team Coach Julia in our course from May 24 – May 30th to debrief on team process with your team with an eye towards examining what worked for you in your team, what could be improved on in your next team work, and what areas would be ones to focus on as you set up in new teams in LRNT 522. You can book your team debrief with Julia here. She has also shared a wealth of information on working effectively in teams at the graduate level in the Team Resources folder in our Moodle Companion shell.

I think that is about it for now from my end. Happy plotting and planning for the Scrum and we will we will speak soon!




P.S. Came across this the other day and thought you might like this quote as we move forward:

"Debate is, above all, a way for those who hold opposing views to discuss controversial issues without descending to insult, emotional appeals or personal bias....Debate is not a forum for asserting absolute truths, but rather a means of making and evaluating arguments that allows debaters to better understand their own and others’ positions" (International Debate Education Association, 2017, para. 1 & 3).