1 year ago

6 August, 2016

Carslaw 175

Organised by:
University of Sydney Union Debating

Tired of 3-on-3? Secretly pretend to be David Cameron in your spare time? Love the sound of your voice so much that you want to interrupt other people’s speeches with it? Well, you’re in luck - in Semester Two, USU Debating switches over to British Parliamentary (BP), a format that’ll fulfil all of those dreams (and more!). That means debates involve four teams of two, and fancy position names like “Prime Minister” and “Whip”. Don’t let that put you off though - this tournament is aimed at novices, and is a great way to get involved if you’re just starting out.

One of the best parts of BP is Points of Information! That means you can stand up during other people’s speeches, put one hand out like you’re pretending to be a teapot and ask questions like, “Why is it that you can’t catch Pokemon after they’ve fainted?” or “Do crabs think that fish can fly?”.

As the name suggests, this tournament is exclusively for novices. If you’re a first year, you are definitely a novice. If you aren't in first year, and you have debated at two or more Australs, spoken in the outrounds of Australs (i.e. broken and not been capped out), or debated at Worlds, then you are definitely not a novice. But you can always adjudicate (pls)!

You can either sign up as a team if you have someone you’d like to debate with, or we can put you in a team with someone else if you’d prefer. Debating at BP Novice is always a fun experience, and you should definitely give it a red-hot go if you’re interested!


Register here: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeV5DsVsoRb5RwXjXtNkhZDzi6IBTPUAF8tEJZp5rCRJSqyqw/viewform

Registration is $40 for debaters and free for adjudicators! If you feel like this might be a problem for you, please send us a message; we are able to offer some registration waivers to people who would like to attend but are barred by cost.

Please note that we can’t offer registration discounts if you simply aren’t planning to eat any of the tournament food or attend the socials.


The tournament will be in British Parliamentary (BP) format, which is a little different from the 3-on-3 format you might be familiar with. There are two people in each team, and you have fifteen minutes to prepare after topic release. Debates involve four teams, with two on Government (Affirmative) and two on Opposition (Negative). There are also points of information (PsOI), which means that you can interrupt your opponents during their speeches to ask them questions or respond to their points.

If you’re at all confused, don’t worry - there will be a comprehensive debater briefing at the start of the tournament that’ll explain everything you need to know.


Much like his love of the free market, the list of Jimmy’s debating achievements seems almost endless. After being capped out at Easters in 2015 despite being joint Best Novice Speaker, he’s gone on to compensate by being a Worlds Octo-Finalist, and 4th Best Speaker and a Grand Finalist at this year’s Australs. As an adjudicator, Jimmy broke at Easters, and CA’d ANU Pre-Australs 2016. He’s not well-renowned for being an “ideas person,” but we’ve decided to give him a shot anyway.

As one of the society’s few Science students, Gabby is one of the last things standing between USU Debating and a fully-fledged embrace of the health benefits of Diet Coke. That is a sizeable accomplishment in and of itself, but Gabby also has an enormous list of achievements in both the Australasian and IONA debating circuits, including being an Easters Quarter-Finalist and Women’s Semi-Finalist and Grand-Finalist. As an adjudicator, she’s broken at Australs and Glasgow Cup, and judged the Grand Final of Edinburgh Cup.

9:30 Registration and Briefing
10:00 ROUND 1 Topic Release
12:30 Lunch
13:30 ROUND 2 Topic Release
15:30 Afternoon Tea
16:00 ROUND 3 Topic Release
18:15 Championship Dinner – Thai La Ong

9:30 Briefing
9:45 ROUND 4 Topic Release
12:00 Lunch & Wom*n's welcome
1:00 ROUND 5 Topic Release
15:00 Brownies!
16:00 Semi-Finals
17:30 Grand Final
18:30 Speaker Prize Ceremony
19:00 Post-Tournament Drinks