The Tasmanian Debating Union is Tasmania's premier debating organisation for schools level competition, training and development. The TDU was founded in 1981 and is the sole Tasmanian affiliate of the Australian Debating Federation.

The TDU organises and conducts schools competitions for all levels of secondary education in southern Tasmania, and works with partners in the north of the state and the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association to conduct an annual statewide tournament.

The TDU also undertakes training and development of debaters and adjudicators across the state, and each year selects a team to represent Tasmania at the Australian Debating Championships.

Click here to subscribe to our mailing list and receive updates on TDU competitions, meetings, events and activities.

Round 1 Skills Focus: Models | 6 March 2018

This year, every Round of the Schools Competition will have a Skills Focus Area, intended to afford debaters an opportunity to improve their skills in relation to a particular aspect of debating. The TDU will accompany each announcement of topics with a brief guide to the Round’s Skills Focus, and adjudicators will provide teams with feedback relating to that area after each debate (although it should be noted that the Skills Focus Area will not be granted extra weight in scoring).

The Round 1 Skills Focus will be models. Teams are strongly encouraged to read this guide to models, and apply the information it contains to their preparation for debates in Round One. For further information, teams should contact the Schools Coordinators.

Topics for Round 1: Tasmanian Politics | 6 March 2018

Debating for students in the Grade 8, Grade 9 and Grade 10 competitions will commence on Wednesday March 14 at Taroona High School. The Novice and College competitions will commence on Wednesday March 21 at St Michael's Collegiate. The subject area for Round 1 is Tasmanian politics; topics are listed below.

Novice: That young Tasmanians should be able to vote
Grade 8: That we should reduce the number of local councils in Tasmania
Grade 9: That we should ban poker machines from pubs and clubs
Grade 10: That we should ban all financial donations to Tasmanian political parties

CollegeAdvised subject: Parties and representation

Roster for 2018 released | 6 March 2018

Registrations for the 2018 Southern Schools debating competition have now closed. With a total of 86 teams from 17 schools registered, the Competition will be the TDU's largest in several years, and we are looking forward to working with new and returning students, teachers and parents throughout the season.

A draft fixture and draft roster for the Competition are now available. Drawing up the roster can be a fraught process, and coaches and coordinators are asked to carefully review the fixture and roster and make the TDU aware of any errors or omissions, such as missing teams, impossible hosting dates or a team being over-represented as Affirmative or Negative (teams should generally represent both sides a minimum of twice). Notice of errors in the draft roster, or of known conflicts with scheduled evenings of debating, is appreciated as soon as possible.

Please note that owing to technical difficulties we are currently unable to release the roster for the Novice competition. The Novice date and topic for Round 1 are listed above, and a full roster will be available on the web later today.