This course is concerned with the development of your oral communication. To become a better thinker and a better speaker you must learn to practice skills that enable you to take charge of the ideas about argumentation. Students are supposed to acquire basic communication skills. This course is designed to upgrade students’ communication skills through debating and will focus on providing a variety of practice opportunities. It will emphasize your figuring out things in oral communication, your critical thinking by using your own mind, not memorizing what is in the textbook. On a typical class day, you will be in small groups practicing critical thinking and debating. You will be regularly responsible for assessing your own work and the work of others using criteria and standards discussed in class. For each class day, you will have either oral or written assignments due. Sometimes you will have a topic assigned a week in advance, and other times we will have a limited preparation time. In most cases, we will not follow the exact order of the chapters or activities of the book.
In addition, intercultural communication is becoming more complex with the advance of globalization. People from different cultures have different ways of seeing and understanding the world. To be an interculturally competent debater, you are expected to think and act in ways that acknowledge and respect your audience while cherishing your cultural roots and making references to Chinese history and heritage. To this end, you are supposed to be alert and sensitive to the cultural factors, such as beliefs, values, and traditions that could affect your cross-cultural audience’s understanding of and responses to your message. You can elaborate on your ideas and views by explaining China’s culture, history, and points of view in such a way that people from other countries can understand and identify with China, and be ready to give it greater appreciation and support.
The teaching objectives and requirements of this course can be divided into the following aspects:
1. Understand and practice basic British Parliamentary debate (BP) formats;
2. Construct affirmative cases on a value proposition with provided evidence and limited preparation;
3. Provide written policy cases and disadvantage using a stock issues paradigm;
4. Identify, evaluate, and analyze multiple fallacies, and apply critical thinking in the assessment of argumentation and debate course concepts;
5. Identify main issues in a debate and present a decision through written assessment;
6. Have cultural confidence and become an interculturally competent public speaker.
Course assessment: In-class debates and team project: 60 %; Final examination: 40%