Kamis, 25 November 2010

British Parliamentary Debate

British Parliamentary Debate is very widespread, and has gained major support in the United Kingdom, Ireland, Europe, Africa, Philippines and United States. It has also been adopted as the official style of the World Universities Debating Championship and the European Universities Debating Championship (at which the speakers are given only fifteen minutes' notice of the motion). Speeches are usually between five and seven minutes in duration. The debate consists of four teams of two speakers, sometimes called factions, with two teams on either side of the case.

Because of the style's origins in British parliamentary procedure, the two sides are called the Government and Opposition, while the speakers take their titles from those of their parliamentary equivalents (such as the opening Government speaker, called the Prime Minister). Furthermore, since this style is based on parliamentary debate, each faction is considered to be one of two parties in a coalition. They must therefore differentiate themselves from the other team on their side of the case in order to succeed in their own right.

All speakers are expected to offer Points of Information (POIs) to their opponents. POIs are particularly important in British Parliamentary style, as it allows the first two teams to maintain their relevance during the course of the debate, and the last two teams to introduce their arguments early in the debate. The first and last minute of each speech is considered "protected time", during which no POI may be offered.

Depending on the country, there are variations in speaking time, speaking order, and the number of speakers. For example, in New Zealand, both the leader of the Opposition and the Prime Minister offer a short summary as the last two speakers.

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