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The Claremont Colleges Debate Union hosts five intercollegiate tournaments each year, including a select round robin, a national open division tournament, and national championships for junior varsity and novice debate and British-format debate. Invitations are available for the following events:

• Junior Varsity National Championship, February 11-12, 2005

• National Novice Championship, February 11-12, 2005

US Universities National Debate Championship

  (Br. Format), April 1-3, 2005

National Round Robin, September 23, 2005

National Open, September 24-25, 2005



For a description of tournament amenities, specific rules, FAQ's, and other information, please review this pdf file: "tournaments, supplementary information for guests."

• National Round Robin

The National Round Robin is a select invitational tournament, featuring the top ten ranked teams in the nation. Participating teams debate other registered teams in two equally competitive debate divisions, with the division winners meeting in a final debate for the tournament championship. In 2004, ten teams, representing seven states, engaged in outstanding and challenging argumentation on motions such as, “The United States should substantially reform its tort system,” “The European Union should not admit Turkey,” and “Negotiate with terrorists.” The University of Wyoming won the 2004 championship; Colorado State University placed second; and Rice University finished third. Sean Mumper, Loyola Marymount University, was the top speaker at the tournament.

The 2005 National Round Robin is scheduled for Friday, September 23, 2005.

• National Open

The National Open is a nationally competitive, open division tournament. Each year, from 85-90 teams (the tournament classroom capacity) gather for the most competitive invitational intercollegiate tournament in the country. There are eight preliminary debates and four elimination round debates. Extraordinarily successful teams from throughout the US attend the event – participants are guaranteed to have many preliminary round debates that are the equivalent of late elimination debates at other invitational contests. In addition, the tournament provides the finest amenities of any college debate tournament in any format in the US – catered food and beverages are available to contestants throughout the day (at all times during competition); for guests’ relaxation, there is music, film, even aromatherapy. Door prizes and other awards are offered.

In 2004, teams debated motions such as: “The United States should adopt a substantially new development policy for one or more Caribbean nations,” “This House would permit athletes to use performance-enhancing drugs,” “The United States should significantly increase regulation of occupational safety and health,” “In this circumstance, This House would restrict gated communities,” “This House would substantially increase its support for the middle class,” “This House would establish a Truth and Reconciliation Commission for indigenous peoples in the Americas,”  and “This House would act to undermine corporate personhood.”  Colorado State University won the 2004 National Open; Rice University placed second; and Lewis and Clark College and the University of Wyoming finished in third place. Kyle Warneck, Claremont Colleges, was the top speaker of more than 175 contestants.

The 2005 National Open is scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, September 24-25, 2005.

• Junior Varsity National Championship and National Novice Championship

The premiere competition for students of limited debate experience, the Junior Varsity National Championship and National Novice Championship were held in February 2005. A competition for students in their first year of debating or with limited experience (no more than 4 semesters of college debating), the tournaments feature seven preliminary debates and four elimination round debates. The only national championship tournament specifically designed for novice debaters and the only junior varsity parliamentary championship tournament, the events include the amenities of the National Open, including a judging seminar, catered meals throughout the event, music and film entertainment, and more. All teams with a winning record and the top 25 speakers will receive awards.

The inaugural tournament was held February 11-12, 2005. The Junior Varsity champion team was South Orange County Colleges' Jenny Tran and Karen Wright; the Claremont Colleges' Duncan Anderson and Tom Sprankling placed second. Xochitl Garcia, Occidental College, was the top individual speaker. The Novice National Champion was from Biola University - Elisabeth Brookins and Hannah Pizelo. The South Orange County Colleges' team of Jessica Bursack and Olivia Weber placed second. Olivia Weber, South Orange County Colleges, was the top individual novice speaker.

• US Universities National Debate Championship

In collaboration with the National Parliamentary Caucus (NPC) the Claremont Colleges Debate Union will host the first national debate championship in the British (4-team) format. The event is scheduled for Friday-Sunday, April 1-3, 2005.

On Friday, April 1, the CCDU will administer a debate seminar and demonstration of the British format for all contestants and judges. Tournament competition will begin on Friday evening. The event will feature seven preliminary debates and three elimination rounds (with the addition of teams per debate, it is the equivalent of an octafinal elimination round), as well as the typical amenities of Claremont tournaments.