The debate team at UNI competes in two person, policy debate. Each year debate teams representing colleges and universities across the nation select a single topic to research and debate for the year. After completing extensive research on the topic, teams from UNI travel to other universities to compete against teams from other schools. Topics about which we have debated recently include: amending Title VII of the Civil Rights Act to increase protections against race and/or gender discrimination, increasing security assistance to Southeast Asia, increasing regulations on environmental pollutants, amending the federal sentencing guidelines, decreasing the use of fossil fuels in the U.S., the U.S. Supreme Court, and U.S. Foreign Policy in China and the Middle East.
The 2011-12 national college topic is:
Resolved: The United States Federal Government should substantially increase its democracy assistance for one or more of the following: Bahrain, Egypt, Libya, Syria, Tunisia, Yemen.
Members of the team travel to a variety of regional and national tournaments for a total of between 5 and 12 tournaments a year, depending on skill, experience, and work level. In the past, UNI has attended tournaments at: Harvard University, Northwestern University, Missouri State University, Augustana College, Wichita State University, University of Texas-Austin, and many others. Our teams also consistently compete at the CEDA National Tournament and the National Debate Tournament (NDT). The debate program pays all expenses for tournament travel.
In addition to providing monetary support for tournament travel, UNI is able to offer an array of scholarships to debaters as a means to defray tuition expenses. Visit the Scholarship page to learn more.
If you have any questions about the debate program at UNI please contact:
Richard Tews, M.A.
Director of Debate
322 Lang Hall
Department of Communication Studies
University of Northern Iowa
Cedar Falls, IA 50613-0139