Debates are often won or lost in the final speech. That speech has to put the whole debate in context, summarize your side and complete the attack on your opponents. In case line, that speech is a reply. It uses elements of the traditional rebuttal and the lowly summary, but also focuses on case line analysis.

You will know how to differentiate between a rebuttal and a reply
You will know why you should use a reply when using case line

Key Learning:

The final part of CASE is

  • E - the process of exposing, which is clash and case line analysis.

Case analysis is the process of putting the debate in perspective. It has a basic structure in a reply speech:

  1. Restate the case line in a new broader sense. This is like re-stating your thesis in the conclusion of an essay.
  2. Highlight the underlying issue of the debate (case line clash).
  3. Show how your main three arguments remain standing and reinforce your thesis about the underlying issue.
  4. Show how the fundamental principle of the opponent's case line is wrong.
  5. Global clash with 1-3 key arguments.
  6. Put the debate into perspective and answer the question - "Why does it matter?"

    To Do:

Listen to the opening statements of a rebuttal and a reply and think about the following listed below. You may follow along on the handout (.doc) if you prefer.

The resolution is: BIRT this house believes that low taxes are preferable to extensive government services. The negative case line is: Social services are beneficial to society in both an economic and humanitarian sense.


  • What is the role of the final speech on each side of a debate?
  • What makes an effective concluding speech?
  • What type of final speech do you usually do?
  • What skills must a debater have to do a rebuttal? A reply?

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News & Upcoming Events

  • Changes to the Board


    The October AGM saw a number of changes to the board we'd like to acknowledge. We are pleased with the strong turn-out this year. We had a number of parents and coaches present as well as most clubs represented. With the regular turn-over in board member terms, we would like to welcome Melissa Gerlach and Paula Dvernichuk as new members to the board. Of course these psotions mark the end of terms of other members. So, we'd also like to acknowledge the following retiring board members:


    Kara Helmes - Kara has been a long history with SEDA. A member of the board for over 10 years, she has committed to coaching and supporting SEDA. A former debater, president and past president (two terms), she helped SEDA navigate some turbulent waters in recent years. We thank Kara for her commitment and leadership.


    Sarah Myers - Sarah, a recent addition to the board, has spent her free time supporting elementary debate and coaching. As a highly respected member of the board, her contributions are valued. We are grateful to Sarah for her contributions to SEDA.


    Dylan Hardy - A former debater, Dylan is passionate about debate. He has committed his time to the advancement of debate and debaters in the province as a coach, mentor, judge and board member. Although his long commitment to the board is coming to an end, Dylan's impact on the debate community will remain.


    Matt Schmeisser - Also a former debater, Matt has dedicated hours debating, coaching and actively participating on the board. Matt has volunteered his time and energy and influence many young debaters and many have noted the feedback he provides. Wherever his career takes him, debate will remain an important part of Matt's life. SEDA is grateful to Matt and wishes him the best in his endeavors.

  • Your Canada - Your Constitution

    Thank you YCYC for sponsoring 2016 National Debate!