[eDebate] 100 pt scale discussion

Darren Elliott delliott
Fri Oct 9 16:18:03 CDT 2009

I completely get and understand what D Lo is saying and where he is coming from.  I agree--more discussion probably good.

But I would like to see it go a step further--maybe make it into judge philosophies--I will try and do the same.  I am less concerned about how judges interpret the scale in comparison to the old 30 point scale, just like it doesnt matter to me how you would compare 100 point scale to a 637 point scale.  What matters, and where the conversation should go is HOW do you arrive at the numbers you arrive at?  And not in comparison to 30--if we want to move away from 30 why still use it as a comparison?

In conversations Ross intimated the 100 pt scale made sense in terms of how we grade in a classroom.  So the question should be what kind of "rubric" or "baseline" or "standards" determine the points we assign.  How important is CX?  10%?  15%?  Is asking CX questions more weighted than answering?  Is the scale different for a 1A vs a 2N?  I am not sure people have thought long and hard about these issues.  Maybe they have.  But continuously returning to how does it compare to the 30 point scale seems to miss the point of switching altogether.  If I am a 2A, it would be great to know what I gotta do to get a 90 versus an 80 in front of different judges.  The 30 point scale became obsolete when the norm became a 27.5/28 and we felt bad about giving lower than a 27.  We would never grade this way in a classroom I dont imagine.  So if the analogy to the point scale and a grading scale is our starting point, then we need to have some "academic" standards for the end point--the final "grade".

While running the tournament this weekend I plan to give more thought into my own objectives for grading.


Darren Elliott
Director of Debate and Forensics
Kansas City Kansas Community College

From: edebate-bounces at www.ndtceda.com [edebate-bounces at www.ndtceda.com] On Behalf Of Brian DeLong [bdelo77 at gmail.com]
Sent: Tuesday, October 06, 2009 3:35 PM
To: Edebate
Subject: [eDebate] 87 Average?

Clearly the results from Kentucky show a large discrepancy between
pockets of judges in how they are interpreting the 100 point scale.
Some people are on this 87=average boat, while others place average at
around 78-80ish.  I'm no numbers game, nor an expert on the history of
point distribution etc. but I do think more discussion on this scale
should occur.

Reaching consensus is clearly impossible.  People are still going to
fight the good fight against point inflation.

I would suggest that  tournament providers include in their invites an
interpretation of the scale to help bridge this present gap.  You will
have judges that fight this interpretation and that's fine, but for
the rest of us who just want to make sure points are allocated fairly
to the debaters it would be a great help to at least find a point of
unity somewhere.  Without some point of consistent measurement to work
off of we're going to continue to see some fairly decent judges being
reduced on the pref sheets.  A counterargument to this is that maybe
these anti-point inflation crusaders  aren't that great of judges to
begin with in the first place.  Fair enough.  But for those of us who
wish to stay in the realm of preferable judge, whether we are good or
not, some baseline is needed.

Maybe it would be wise for us to vote on scales of measurement to set
a norm for this community.  We have the ability to set up an informal
or formal voting system.  This method would at least take the
responsibility off a tournament host from arbitrarily choosing a
baseline scale.

With that said, I am on board with voting for a point system that
looks like this:

30-29.6 = 100-96


To respond to number's games observations, As Ross Smith once claimed,
the most recent scientific data indicates that we naturally cluster
numbers to help us simplify complex information.  5 and 10 clustering
is only inevitable.

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