[eDebate] Point Inflation and the 100 pt scale

Nick Ryan runlittleman
Wed Sep 23 14:04:51 CDT 2009


I have updated my philosophy to follow Hester's comparison of the two point
scales.
Nick Ryan
Liberty Debate

On Wed, Sep 23, 2009 at 10:59 AM, michael hester <uwgdebate at gmail.com>wrote:

> Russell is correct. 87 is too high. i was conservative (i.e., tried to
> stay close to what i thought others would do) at GSU b/c i felt like
> UTD got jobbed last year missing on points and it affected their bid
> application.
>
> but i will also go on record and say my 100 point scale will look like
> this:
>
> 27-27.5: 70-74
>
> 27.5-28: 75-82
>                    --> these two have large ranges b/c they are the
> areas i want to distinguish the most
> 28-28.5: 83-89
>
> > 28.5: 90-100
>
>
>
> i'm adding this to my judge philosophy (plus, there are some other
> additions since GSU)
>
> hester
>
> On Tue, Sep 22, 2009 at 9:00 PM, Jason Russell <jasonlrussell1 at gmail.com>
> wrote:
> > 87 should assuredly not be the average. That's ridiculous. If 87 is
> > average then we're using this scale needlessly and could easily use
> > the old 30 point scale just as well since it is likely no one is
> > getting below a 75 even if they're really terrible with 87 set as the
> > mark. In fact, that average would argue we'd need less
> > differentiation, not more.
> >
> > I'm not so worried about the top speaker having really high points as
> > I am about the middle and bottom being differentiated. The top 20
> > speakers at most tournaments are objectively very close in skill and
> > persuasiveness. Those debaters typically do A level work (90-100). I'm
> > not shocked they're about the same. I am constantly shocked at how
> > close the 50th debater is in points to the 20th debater. In my mind,
> > there is a huge difference.
> >
> > I wish tournaments would stop providing advice on what the scale means
> > because it directly influences judges. Many people I know have said to
> > me re: the old Wake system histogram "yeah, I thought a 70 or so
> > should be average like a term paper, but it says here an 82 is a 27,
> > so that's what I'll go by". Judging is so referential to important
> > opinion leaders and norms and trends that this simple suggestion
> > quickly becomes a law. Let's be honest: we got to the problem of point
> > inflation because many judges want the good teams to pref them. If you
> > give lower points, you won't get preffed by the top teams fighting for
> > elim seeding or even the 30-45 teams fighting to clear. So the trend
> > in points went up to satisfy debaters' egos and consequently judges'
> > egos. Now, because of these "suggestions" at tournaments regarding the
> > meaning of their scales, debaters have concrete expectations about
> > their points that START at 87. This is like students who walk into a
> > college classroom and believe that completing all of their work gets
> > them an A. It's nonsensical, uneducational, and frankly does debaters
> > a disservice in evaluating their true skills, both strengths and
> > weaknesses.
> >
> > 87 won't be my average at 100 point scale tournaments. I will start at
> > 75 and work from there.
> >
> > J
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> >
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