[eDebate] MPJ at tournaments with multiple divisions

Gary Larson Gary.N.Larson
Tue Nov 11 12:24:53 CST 2008

My understanding of the amendment parallels Jeff's.

I should note, however, that the order in which divisions are paneled with respect to MPJ potentially makes a huge difference.  Given a moderately size open and JV and/or novice division, unless one consciously downgrades preference choices in the first division paired, subsequent divisions will not receive anything near the same level of preference.

STA (which is not currently used at the majority of multi-division tournaments) provides the ability to panel judges for multiple divisions simultaneously, using a variety of strategies for prioritizing individual debates.  For instance, in a round where you wish to privilege break rounds, followed by rounds above the break, followed by rounds where both teams have been eliminated, STA will first assign judges to all of the break rounds in all divisions selected (using average pref of previous rounds as an additional tiebreaker) followed by above and below.  Selecting the option of pairing more than one division simultaneously has as an inevitable outcome the reduction of pref in the division that you would have paired first coupled with a significant improvement in divisions you would pair subsequently.  Additionally, the average overall preference across all divisions would slightly improve because of the ability to consider many more alternative placements.

Since many more tournaments use TRPC as opposed to STA with many tournaments still assigning judges using a largely "manual" or "computer-aided" strategy, Rich, Jon and I are working on a new version (or successor) to TRPC that will be able to integrate my judge assignment algorithms (as an option) into the interface that most members of the community are already comfortable with.  While I had hopes of completing that project by now, it is still a few months away.


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