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Module 1: Tracking a Debate

In this module, we discuss the most fundamental skill of being a good judge: tracking or note-taking. By the end of this module, you should have an understanding of why this skill is crucial, and have the confidence to experiment with different approaches to see what works best for you.

As a starting point, the theory video for this module covers some broad principles that you should consider when designing your own tracking style and habits.

When learning how to be a better judge, we think it's helpful to see what best practice looks like, and tracking is no different. We've asked three experienced judges to share how they approach tracking, and to provide a practical demonstration for you to refer to.

Each of our guest judges has prepared a short video explaining their method. They've also tracked the same top-half debate and shared their notes. That way, you can see how different judges can use different approaches to track the same debate.

You don't have to adopt one of their approaches wholesale. Instead, you can mix and match elements of each of their styles to find something that works well for you. You can also try tracking the same debate that they did, and compare your notes to theirs. 

Judge 1: Jessica Musulin

Judge 2: Boemo Phirinyane

Judge 3: Yair Har-Oz

Jessica was DCA at WUDC 2020.

You can find Jessica's notes here.

Boemo is DCA at WUDC 2021. You can find Boemo's notes here.

Yair was a DCA at EUDC 2018.

You can find Yair's notes here.

Answering your questions...

We believe that a good training programme should, wherever possible, be a conversation. At the end of each module, we want to answer some commonly asked questions from the community. By sharing these answers on this page, we hope that your questions (and our answers) will make this resource even more useful over time.

There's nothing here?

That's because we've just started receiving questions and feedback from you. We hope to update this section soon. In the meantime, you can help by asking questions about any of our modules here.


We are also considering giving formal credit for those that will watch all the videos i.e. newer WUDC judges will get to claim a completion of the series as part of their CV for WUDC. Many judges do not come from established circuits or have access to the ample opportunities that come from being in such a circuit.

A certification can serve as an equalizer for those that have fewer chances to participate in tournaments and judge with highly trained adjudicators. Completing the assessment pieces for each module will contribute to our formal credit/certification scheme once it is finalized.

The assessment exercise for this module on judge tracking can be found here.


If you have any feedback about the programme, or suggestions for future topics we should cover, you can submit that here.

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