Thursday, January 29, 2009

IDEA Trains at Seoul National University

On January 28th IDEA held a workshop introducing debate to students at Seoul National University. Registration was open to all, and the crowd was a diverse mix of graduate and undergraduate students studying everything from physical education to mechanical engineering to art history.

After introductions and a warm-up activity, the group of about 20 students talked about how to define “debate” and the components of an argument. We then had students choose topics, generated arguments against each of the topics, and had students present speeches defending their stance by responding to those arguments. Topics ranged from abolishing Korea’s laws against adultery to Israel’s attacks in Gaza to the best ways to be healthy, and the speeches were impressive and convincing!

At the end of the session, we talked about tips to public speaking (if you’re nervous, just pretend you’re not!) and went over the rules and structures for the British Parliamentary format of debate.

It was a relaxed and fun session, and IDEA is looking forward to seeing some of the participants next month at the CAU-IDEA Pacific Rim Championship!

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