Previews and Research
T4 Middle School Conference Championship Case Previews
T5 Red Conference Championship Case Previews
What Are Affirmative Case Previews?
Affirmative cases additional to the core files cases can be be previewed and run at Chicago Debate tournaments in the Conferences, regulated by the Chicago Debate Guidelines and Policies. The RCC Conference has no previewing and no limits on the affirmative cases that can be run. Previewing a new affirmative case is entirely optional for teams in the Red, White, and Blue Conferences, though there are often strategic advantages to doing so. Previewing is done on the official Chicago Debate form, which requires the sharing of the full plan text, full descriptions of Harms (including terminal impacts and scenarios), Solvency mechanisms, and all citations.
Previews are collected by the league, then posted for all schools, so that they can research and prepare negative arguments and strategies. Any school may use a case previewed by another school, by Conference-Division, so long as they use the same cards.
What Are Affirmative Plan Text Changes?
Along with being able to preview new affirmative cases, the Red, White, and Blue Conference schools can also preview a change to one of the runnable plan texts. Early in the season, this generally means previewing a change to one of the core files plan texts. Schools preview plan text changes in order to adapt and improve their strategy against disadvantages, topicality violations, and sometimes solvency attacks.
How Do I Research a New Affirmative Case?
Most teams preview a new case by finding one already prepared online. The National Debate Coaches Association Open Evidence Project has thousands of pages of debate evidence from the top university summer debate institutes from around the country. The NDCA also hosts a searchable wiki with citations and sometimes full text of arguments used by National Circuit teams from around the country so far this season. At the most advanced levels of high school debate, teams research and prepare their own affirmative cases from scratch, doing reading in the topic literature that leads them to discover a good new idea for the resolution. Having our students research most of their own arguments, including their own affirmative case, is what we all aspire to.