ERIC Number: ED333505
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-Apr-5
Reference Count: N/A
There Is No Sound Pedagogical Linkage between Teaching Argumentation and Forensics.
Stanton, Donal J.
Given the nature of current forensic practices, there is no sound pedagogical linkage between argumentation and forensics. The past 30 years have witnessed a consistent decline in the scope and diversity of forensic activities, and forensics has become synonymous with contest debating. Debate has become a technical, specialized, jargonized activity understood only by professional debaters and coaches. Yet many authors of debate texts and many who teach argumentation continue to equate argumentation with debate and draw upon contest specimens for examples. As a consequence, formal debate principles, concepts and examples frequently provide the models and subject matter for teaching argumentation. The teaching of argumentation, however, should be divorced from debate. In addition, there are two other rationales that support this position. Firstly, exercises and assignments employed in argumentation classes should reflect and deal with the argumentative forms, settings and formats students are most likely to encounter in their professional, social, political, and family lives. The forensic model is extremely ill-suited to serving these needs. Secondly, written assignments should be an integral part of any course in argumentation. One of the greatest weaknesses of the forensics/debate model is that it ignores the importance of writing in teaching argumentation. (PRA)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Argumentation Theory; Debate Theory
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Southern States Communication Association (Tampa, FL, April 3-7, 1991).