chapter  0
An Introduction to Classroom Debate
A Tool for Educating Minds and Hearts
ByKaryl A. Davis, M. Leslie Wade Zorwick, James Roland, Melissa Maxcy Wade
Pages 10

This introduction presents an overview of key concepts discussed in subsequent chapters of this book. In order to understand the power of debate education and the timeliness of its application, the book discusses on what we mean by debate education and an exploration of how the benefits of debate align with educational policies that strive to prepare students for success in the 21st century, with a particular focus on using debate to meet the goals established in the Common Core State Standards. It argues that debate is a very broad approach to engaging with topics; it is a flexible and adaptive pedagogical tool that allows students to engage in content, while simultaneously developing their critical thinking, communication, and collaboration skills. One critical distinction when introducing the idea of classroom debate is that having an argument is different from making an argument. Common Core State Standards (CCSS) emphasize a number of skills strongly associated with debate.