Competition Rules

ANVDC 2023

Please read these rules properly before your first debate. All participants and coordinators must agree to and adhere to all rules as part of their participation in the competition.

Scheduling, Re-Scheduling, Cancellations and Forfeits

  • Scheduling
    • Debates must be scheduled within the specified stage dates
    • Debates must be scheduled by the affirmative/host team
    • Debates are scheduled by mutual agreement with the opposition team
    • Debates must be scheduled via the official method (via the platform) and no exceptions will be made
    • Any debates that are not scheduled at the conclusion of a stage will be ruled as a no-points draw
    • Important: If you are having trouble communicating with your opponents or with the host team, please contact the ANVDC team
  • Rescheduling
    • Once a debate has been scheduled, there is no obligation for either team to agree to a reschedule. If your team is unable to attend the scheduled debate, you must inform the other team and ask for a reschedule. If they refuse, you must forfiet.
    • Rescheduling a debate must be done through the link provided in the original booking confirmation email and you must inform the ANVDC team via (CC'ing the other coordinator) why you are rescheduling

    • If you do not use the proper link and inform us of your plans to reschedule, your debate may be assigned a forfiet or draw outcome

    • Rescheduling is only accepted before the division cut off time
    • Primary division: 1 hour before the start of preparation
    • Junior division: 24 hours prior to the start of preparation
    • Middle division: 36 hours prior to the start of preparation
    • Senior/Open division: 36 hours prior to the debate

    • Any debates that are rescheduled after these cut off times will be declared a forfiet
  • Cancellations
    • If you're outside of the cut off time for rescheduling and you don't have an agreed upon alternative, you must use the cancellation link provided in the original booking confirmation email
    • Failure to do so may result in a forfeit or draw for that debate
    • Once a suitable day/time is found, you must schedule the debate again using the booking system
  • Forfeits
    • Teams who do not attend the preparation/debate as per the rules and schedule will be forfeited after a 15 minute grace period
    • Teams that do not follow proper procedure for scheduling/rescheduling/chancelling debates will have a forfeit result recorded
    • Teams & coordinators who display inappropriate or rude conduct towards any member of the ANVDC team may have individual results forfeited or their team expelled from the ANVDC at the discretion of the chief convener

General Rules

  • Specific division rules are listed in the Division Guide.
  • Computers may be used in preparation time ONLY as directed in the division guide. All computers should be closed once permitted time has elapsed. If computer use continues, this may be cause for disqualification.
  • Computers ARE NOT to be used as a replacement for palm cards or paper.
  • All debaters (including the 4th speaker) should be visible on camera at all times during preparation time (High School divisions).
  • All debaters (including 4th speaker) should be visible on camera when opposition is speaking
  • Current speaker should be visible and clearly identified on camera while speaking
    • if using a single view only, the speaker should stand to identify themselves
    • if using multiple views, the camera should change to show the speaker and then toggled back to the team at the completion of the speaker's argument
  • Microphones should be muted while opposition is speaking to minimise noise interruptions
  • Coordinators should connect to the debate at least 5 minutes prior to the scheduled start time and teams should be present and ready to start at the scheduled start time.
    • If a debate is delayed by more than 15 minutes from the scheduled start time the Adjudicator will close the debate and report to the ANVDC Coordinator.
    • In the case of unforeseen technical issues, such as power outages, the match will be rescheduled if possible, at the discretion of the ANVDC Coordinator, otherwise, a forfeit win will be awarded to the team who was present.
  • Any concerns over a result must be submitted by the school coordinator via the 'Debate Review' function in the platform within 24 hours of completion of the debate. Reviews will only be conducted if a coordinator was present and has genuine concerns that the result was unfair. If the review is upheld, the ANVDC coordinator will escalate the debate to the Chief Adjudicator for additional adjudication. The Chief Adjudicator will not be aware of the original result whilst reviewing.
  • For a debate result to be overturned, the Chief Adjudicator must:
    • Rule in favour of your challenge and
    • Deem that there was an obvious error made by the original Adjudicator in their assessment.
  • All debates will be recorded and kept for a minimum of 72 hours for review purposes.
  • It is the Coordinator's responsibility to ensure that all students under their care behave in a manner that is respectful to both the Opposition and the Adjudicator at all times.

Camera Setup

Please ensure you follow the correct camera setup during the debate

  • Preparation time (High School Divisions) - The coordinator and all debaters should be visible on camera during the entire preparation time. Mute your microphones, but ensure your camera is on.
  • During the debate
    • Current Speaker should be clearly seen on camera
    • All members of the opposition team should be clearly visible on camera

Use of Computers

  • There is to be NO use of computers during debates, this includes for the use of palm cards or notes.
  • For Middle School and Senior School divisions, computers can be used for the first 15 minutes of preparation time ONLY.
  • School Coordinators are responsible for ensuring their students' devices are shut and put away after the first 15 minutes.
  • Teams that leave a device open during the rest of preparation time OR during the debate itself may be disqualified from the match.

Use of AI

  • There is to be NO use of AI during preparation or during the debate.
  • While we understand that AI has become an accepted part of education and learning for some schools, for the purposes of this competition its use is stricly forbidden.
  • Any teams caught using AI tools will be disqualified from the competition.
  • School Coordinators are responsible for ensuring their students do not use AI or generative machine learning tools.

Minimum Technical Requirements

To participate in the competition, schools should ensure they can meet the requirements listed below.

  • A reliable internet connection
  • Desktop/laptop computer with the following peripherals
    • Microphone - the ability to pick up participant input from anywhere in a reasonably sized room. The microphone should support “echo-cancelling”. Any echo is very disconcerting for those speaking and unacceptable during a debate.
    • High Definition (HD) Camera - HD resolution camera that can preferably ZOOM and PAN to any position in the room. Programmable pre-set positions are highly desirable and recommended.
    • Speakers - sound output should allow everyone to comfortably hear the debate anywhere in the room
    • TV or projector to allow clear viewing of the other speakers

If you do not have this equipment already, you must commit to purchasing it prior to the competition starting.

View Handbook