A debate is a discussion or structured contest about an issue or a resolution. A formal debate involves two sides: one supporting a resolution and one opposing it. Such a debate is bound by rules previously agreed upon.
Group discussion (GD) is a comprehensive technique to judge the suitability of an individual. GD assesses the overall personality – thoughts, feelings and behaviour – of an individual in a group. A topic is presented to the group members for discussion.
“You don’t win a debate by suppressing discussion; you win it with a better argument.”
First and second speakers of both team’s present arguments. The arguments said by the first speaker should be different, and not overlap, with the arguments of the second speaker. The arguments should be supporting your team’s contention (agreeing or disagreeing with the topic). The first affirmative should present the arguments allocated to the first speaker.
Debating is a team sport – you must work together when preparing you case and during the debate. Each speaker within the team has a certain role to play. It is important that each speaker understands and fulfils their role.
Group discussions can be considered an activity to enhance the communication skills of students. Sharing their ideas and thoughts with their classmates and friends gives them a greater sense of self-confidence in their public speaking skills. Students public speaking skills are honed when group discussions are conducted regularly. Group Discussion can encourage the students to interact with each other more clearly by asking questions and speaking out opinions. This helps in active participation and involvement of students in such group activities.
Debate produces self-confidence, critical thinking, reading, writing and speaking competencies, content area knowledge, organization and time management, and perhaps most important of all, listening skills. Student debaters take these skills to their classes and their lives, magnifying the benefits of debate as every other class and life experience is informed and facilitated by what they take from debate.
The aim of argument, or of discussion, should not be victory, but progress.