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Debate Format: Final Debate

Debate Format: Final Debate

Students put all their skills together to have a final debate. An ESL debate lesson practicing how to follow a complete debate format.

Level:  Advanced

Topic:  Debate

Time:  90 minutes




Designate two or three students as judges, and separate the remaining students into two equal teams.

If there are more than 15 students, split the class into four teams and have two debates. Run the two debates concurrently, but assign different resolutions so students don’t copy ideas from each other.


Give each student the Debate Format Handout, and ask students to get the other handouts needed (listed on the Debate Format Handout). Also, give the judges the Judging Form and a timer.


Read the Handout together as a class and answer any questions.

Note: There is no handout for the Cross Examination. The Cross Examination is the time for students to ask questions about anything they didn’t understand in the opposing team’s Affirmative or Negative Constructive.


Assign the debate resolution. Allow 25 - 30 minutes for the teams to prepare their First Constructive. Judges can alternate between teams to offer unbiased help.


Then, start the debate following the format outlined on the Handout.


At the end of the debate, ask the judges to decide the winner and present their decision to the teams.


Printable Worksheets

Judging Form


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