Different Types of Debates


Debating is born because society recognized that there is no uniform ideology to encompass everyone. Debates can be formal and informal. There are different types of debates. The fact remains that it is a discussion of opposing sides to determine which one is the most credible one. The different types of debates are used on different occasions. Here are the different types of debates.

Lincoln-Douglas Debate

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Different Types of Debates

This is also known as the two men debate. This debate has two sides: affirmative and negative. Each side only has one speaker each. The debate opens with a speech from affirmative which is then followed by the negative.

This type of debate originated from 1858. The Lincoln-Douglas debates were a series of seven debates between Abraham Lincoln and Senator Stephen Douglas. Lincoln was the Republican candidate from Illinois for the United States Senate while Douglas is the Democratic Party candidate. The series was the first of its kind which explains why it was so sensational. Their format is adapted in today’s Lincoln-Douglas debates.

Rebuttal Debate

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Different Types of Debates

This type of debate is also composed of two sides: affirmative versus negative. Each side has two or three speakers each. The members of each team work together in order to overthrow the other side.

The round is opened by the first speaker of the affirmative side. This is followed by the first speaker of the negative side. The opposing side offers a rebuttal speech in order to destroy the points made by the previous speaker. They also rebuild their case during their speech. This alternating pattern continues until all the speakers have spoken.

One-Rebuttal Debate

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Different Types of Debates

This type of debate is like the modified version of the Lincoln-Douglas debate. Each side has two or three speakers. Each speaker has the opportunity to rebut the other side and to rebuild their case. This type of debating is very difficult to adjudicate. The judge must have a sharp mind to keep up with all the points that were shown in each round.

Oregon-Oxford Debate

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Different Types of Debates

This is also known as the forensic debate. It is a traditional form of debate used in a lot of schools. Two perspectives argue over a motion. The winner is declared by knowing which side has swayed the most number of audience members. Each speaker delivers a constructive speech with the goal of proving their side while destroying the opposing team. It is a challenging activity that definitely exercises your brain. One must employ his critical thinking skills and the ability to persuade in order to win.

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