Karen Harrison -- George Mason Univ.

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Judging philosophy:

Name: Karen Harrison
Affiliation: Currently assistant coach at George Mason University
Past Affiliations: Georgetown Day School, University of Georgia, Wake Forest, Celebration High School
School strikes: George Mason University
About me: I debate four years in college and four years in high school. I am not working in DC and assistant coaching for Georgetown Day School (GDS). Although I have been in the activity for a long time, I am still figuring out the art of judging. Here’s what I got so far in terms of general commentary (in no particular order):
1. Don’t pay too much attention to what I say here—although I might have personal preferences about arguments in general, when I’m judging you please go for the argument you’re winning! Debate is a competition and you should do whatever you can to win—hopefully the person in the back of the room can keep up. I would like to think that I can in most situations.
2. I loathe judge intervention and I would really appreciate it if you ended the debate in a way that did not require me to intervene. I will always try to evaluate the round in the most objective manner possible
3. Warranted comparative impact calculus is both one of my favorite things to hear in a debate round and is sadly a rare occurrence in high school debate. If you do this it will most likely be reflected in my decision and at the very least your points
4. Good logical analysis and clash will go very far with me. If you keep the debate organized and you explain your arguments in an articulate way I will very much appreciate it. Sounds basic but you’d be surprised…
5. Although I am willing to vote on there is literally zero risk of an argument, I have yet to see it happen. I like offense vs. defense articulations, they are very useful and often help conceptualize the round but I think debaters often overlook the strategic value good defense can serve in a debate.
Some specifics:
Topicality—love topicality debates although it is the argument I have judged and decided on the least amount of times. I probably default to competing interpretations when evaluating these debates but I am very receptive to the reasonability debate IF it is coupled with an interpretation that I think eliminates some of the negative’s offense.
Disads—love ‘em, can’t get enough. If you’re going for one, talk about how it interacts with and dare I say turns the aff
Counterplan—another awesome arg-- you should explain what the heck your super specific counterplan does at some point in the block; especially if it has a two paragraph text. If I’m just figuring out what the counterplan does in the 2NR that’s probably not a good thing for you…
Kritiks—sure, why not? If you debate them very technically (specific links, articulation of how the alt solves the aff, maybe even a little k turns the case) I’m down. I think kritiks are very strategic in certain situations, especially when the aff chooses not to defend anything. That being said, I am not as well read as most college debaters in this kind of literature so please explain specific terms you’re using and reference the exact cards you would like me to read after the debate.
Performance debate—if you don’t defend the plan or even engage the topic I am probably not the judge for you. Generally speaking, I think switch side debate is a good thing and the central purpose of a debate round is to answer the question proposed in the resolution. Side note: please do not call the other team offensive names because they do not agree with your observations about the debate community.

Seasonal voting record:

TourneyDivRdAFF    NEG    Decision
WestPtOpenOctoRochstrBatha0Weddington0CrnlCue0Wright0NEG 3-0 (NEG)
WestPtOpenQurtCrnlCue0Wright0LibertAyodeji0Holguin0AFF 2-1 (NEG)
GMUOpenQurtUMWSmith0Young0LibertFebrizio0Lotspeich0AFF 2-1 (AFF)

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