Judge Philosophies

Collette Blumer - CSUF


Jen Montgomery - CSUF

My Experience:

2.5 years of college individual events for OCC and CSUF (NFA/AFA)

3 years coaching elementary, middle school, high school and college-level forensics
- Coached and judged all IE events as well as Parli, POFO, IPDA, and a bit of LD

Tldr; I'm looking for logical, respectful, and fair debates where you show confidence in your arguments and sources. Fun debates are welcome as long as any sassiness, jokes, etc. are made in good fun maintain respect, and everyone is clear on this. Focus building YOUR argument most of all.

What are the most important criteria you consider when evaluating a debate?

I'm looking for solid arguments that are backed by sources and can be defended against your opponent's questions and counter-arguments. Confidence in your argument makes a huge difference as well; if you don't believe your own arguments, how do you expect me to?

I appreciate a slower, clear, emphasis on your main contentions so that I am clear on what I am judging and where points are dropped. It's extra helpful however, fo you to call out any dropped arguments as it (1) helps me catch any I missed and (2) shows me that you caught it and are critically analyzing your opponent's arguments.

What are your expectations for proper decorum from the debaters?

Courtesy above all else. This usually isn't a problem, but I have seen some eye rolls, face-making, and rude remarks made mid-debate. I don't mind a friendly banter amongst competitors (in fact, I LOVE a witty and fun debate) but please make that clear at the end with some good sportsmanship. Overall I don't want to see any lines crossed in terms of respect. Keep ad hominem at the door, we are a community and should treat each other as such.

I also love to see your personalities pop in a debate and love to see any personal ties to your arguments. You are a unique human being so play to your strengths as a speaker, I will adapt to you.

What strategies/positions/arguments are you predisposed to listen to and consider when you vote?

I want you to make a strong argument for YOUR point and not just focus on dismantling your opponent's points (especially neg). Even if you manage to poke holes in your opponent's arguments or plans, if they're the only ones who gave me a solid plan to go off of, they will still get my vote. Do not simply tell me to vote for you, let your arguments convince me of that.

How do you evaluate speed, jargon, and technical elements?

If your opponent is fine with these aspects so am, however, I am also aware of the many arguments against spreading so if this is brought up mid-round that is something I will take into consideration against anyone spreading who did not check in with their opponents (& me) beforehand. In short, your opponent needs to be able to follow along with your arguments in order for this debate to be fair.

Most importantly: Have fun! :)

Matthew Alingog - CSUF