Team Information

For the most up to date information, please contact the Director of Forensics Mark Porrovecchio or the team.


The team generally holds two meetings per week--Mondays and Wednesdays from approx. 6:00-8:00 in the squad room (SHEP209)--during the Fall and Winter terms

Missing meetings without an acceptable excuse will affect your ability to attend tournaments and will result in your inability to practice at future meetings. If you miss a debate that you are scheduled for, you will not be able to debate at your next scheduled debate.

In addition to the weekly meeting, IE students are expected to sign up for no less than ½ an hour per week per event with Mark and/or an assistant coach. You can sign up for individual coaching times outside the forensics office, the graduate student offices, or Mark's office. Failure to make a scheduled appointment without sufficient notice will affect your ability to attend tournaments.

Debate rounds will be critiqued by all coaches in attendance. These constructive critiques will focus on the skills presented by the debaters. Students not actually debating may ask questions during the critique session but should refrain from discussing the merits of the case. Such discussions should be saved for discussions after coaching critiques are finished or after the meeting.


All students in good academic standing (team requirement: a minimum of 2.5 GPA) are eligible to attend competitions. Students must achieve a minimum of 2.5 GPA for each term they are competing. Students must be enrolled for a minimum of 6 credits, other than forensics credits. Participation on the team means that the Director of Forensics may access your student records to assure that you meet the stated requirements.

Students must be approved by Mark to compete in events and attend tournaments. Please remember that previous success at a tournament is not the sole criterion for future tournament attendance.

For out of region tournaments, students will be chosen based on preparedness, commitment and competitiveness. In all cases, senior members of the team will be given priority over novice members of the team for out of region travel (so long as the issues above are equal).

The university pays for most of your expenses except for a meal or two.

You must sign up for a tournament by the stated deadline. The sign up sheet will be posted outside the forensics office at least a week in advance of the tournament. Failure to sign up will result in your inability to attend a tournament.

Signing up for a tournament is a commitment to attend a tournament. Students who sign up to attend a tournament and then back out after the deadline will pay the team for all expenses incurred including airfare, tournament registration fees, hotel fee and any other fee incurred.

If a student advances to elimination rounds, that student must attend the rounds. Students that skip elimination rounds will pay their event entry fee and may forfeit their ability to attend future tournaments. All students may use preliminary rounds in which they are not competing to socialize or do homework or other legal activities. All students are committed to watching elimination rounds of both individual events and debate regardless of whether they are competing at that point or not.

The OSU insurance policy demands that students engaged in extracurricular activities for which OSU is providing support be transported in university vehicles. Consequently, you may not drive your own car, so don't even ask. As a result, all of us will travel together. Therefore, you MUST be on time. For each tournament, there will be trip information posted on the sign up. You should be there ten minutes before that time so that we can leave as scheduled. Failure to arrive on time is a no-no that only increases the stresses of tournament travel for yourself and the coaches. You may not leave a tournament or hotel for any reason. You may not leave with friends. They can come to the tournament or hotel but you may not leave with them. The university is liable for you and your safety.

The coaches are the legal representatives of the university. Consequently, coaches will establish and enforce team policies (e.g. curfews, departure times, etc.).  When in doubt, final decisions will be made by Mark.  If you are unsure about an issue or situation, ask him.

Illegal drug use and underage drinking will not be tolerated and will result in your expulsion from the team. During regular season tournaments, drinking is not permitted at tournaments even by those who are of age. Bottom-line: this is an extra-curricular activity where you represent OSU. Act appropriately.