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A good debate question (Page 3)

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--arti--

Goldie

--arti--

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Posted: 06 March 2013 at 6:33pm | IP Logged
Originally posted by epiphany.

A good debate question should have an answer in either yes or no. The debaters must be able to pick sides and justify what caused them to reach that conclusion. I often find myself thinking I am far from a debater because I scarcely ever see things in black and white. And anyone who sees everything in the grey light of things can never truly and fully defend their chosen side and oppose the other. 




Actually I think grey shades help have truly complex debates. The more you delve into any subject, the more aware you become of its complexities. Forcing people to boil it down to yes or no can be problematic as well. Really good debates stop having one or two sides, and allow people to insert new dimensions and perspectives into the conversation without expecting everyone to pick one side and oppose the other.

It's true that topics have "sides," but it doesn't always have to be the case. If you don't see things in black and white, then that's a good thing!

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epiphany.

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epiphany.

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Posted: 06 March 2013 at 10:07pm | IP Logged
Originally posted by --arti--

Originally posted by epiphany.

A good debate question should have an answer in either yes or no. The debaters must be able to pick sides and justify what caused them to reach that conclusion. I often find myself thinking I am far from a debater because I scarcely ever see things in black and white. And anyone who sees everything in the grey light of things can never truly and fully defend their chosen side and oppose the other. 




Actually I think grey shades help have truly complex debates. The more you delve into any subject, the more aware you become of its complexities. Forcing people to boil it down to yes or no can be problematic as well. Really good debates stop having one or two sides, and allow people to insert new dimensions and perspectives into the conversation without expecting everyone to pick one side and oppose the other.

It's true that topics have "sides," but it doesn't always have to be the case. If you don't see things in black and white, then that's a good thing!

I don't think anyone sees things in black and white, they'd have to have a very limited understanding to analyse things like that. But to simplify ideas and especially in a debate, people choose sides and a debater has to make sure their side wins. But you say we delve into the matter and grey shades emerge, that's true. But do you think an answer can be reached to after this? 


--arti--

Goldie

--arti--

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Joined: 20 June 2008

Posts: 1670

Posted: 07 March 2013 at 8:49pm | IP Logged
Originally posted by epiphany.

I don't think anyone sees things in black and white, they'd have to have a very limited understanding to analyse things like that. But to simplify ideas and especially in a debate, people choose sides and a debater has to make sure their side wins. But you say we delve into the matter and grey shades emerge, that's true. But do you think an answer can be reached to after this? 


Correct me if I'm wrong, but I think you're questioning whether we can arrive at a conclusion after discussing grey areas. I see what you mean, but I don't think a conclusion is the goal of a debate. Sometimes consensus can result from a debate, and that's different from a conclusion. Individual arguments can have conclusions, but a debate shouldn't have a neat conclusion. Sometimes through a debate, we can pick up some arguments that are superior to others in terms of merit and clarity. Again, not a conclusion though.

Most topics worth discussing are not topics that lend themselves to easy conclusions, especially where subjective experiences are concerned. So the best one can hope for is a rigourous discussion, whereby many people hold themselves to certain analytical standards and try to present a well-formed argument to make their case. In addition to exchange of ideas, this (ideally) facilitates further exploration of a topic in a way that is interesting/productive/worthwhile to those engaged in discussion.

That's not really what happens here, of course, and maybe it shouldn't. I wouldn't mind. But if we are talking about what we like about debating, then that's how I see it.

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Goldie

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Posted: 08 March 2013 at 6:40am | IP Logged
I agree with Arti, though every debater likes to think that they can finish the debate on the key point, and we are no different from each other.  To me debating as always been a game, it teaches valuable skills, and hopefully remains interesting. The ultimate aim of debating is to win, just like any game. But off course anybody who debates for any length of time is not going to keep winning cause sooner or later, adjudicators will win the debate against you. This may be hard to accept for us but I have always learned the most vital lessons from the debates lost then the debates which were won. To me every debate is an opportunity to learn something...

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moomin4455

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Posted: 08 March 2013 at 7:24am | IP Logged
I'm pretty simple - if I can learn something new throughout the course of a debate I'm happy. LOL

What makes a good debate question? An open ended question which is known to incite a different opinion in individuals. It can't be too niche a topic where people would need specialist knowledge in order to take part; the question should be broad enough the people can put forward their views without having to have too much background information - considering this is IF and people from all ages and backgrounds comment here.




Edited by moomin4455 - 08 March 2013 at 7:23am

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BirdieNumNum--arti--boreddamsel

-Aarya-

Goldie

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Posted: 08 March 2013 at 7:54am | IP Logged
Originally posted by moomin4455

I'm pretty simple - if I can learn something new throughout the course of a debate I'm happy. LOL

What makes a good debate question? An open ended question which is known to incite a different opinion in individuals. It can't be too niche a topic where people would need specialist knowledge in order to take part; the question should be broad enough the people can put forward their views without having to have too much background information - considering this is IF and people from all ages and backgrounds comment here.




Can you really control what topic people should debate on? I would never want to put limitations or restrictions on topic just because we are all from different age group or back ground. I always believed that everyone is capable of debating on all topics, it's merely a choice! :)

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moomin4455

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Posted: 08 March 2013 at 9:13am | IP Logged
Originally posted by -Aarya-

Originally posted by moomin4455

I'm pretty simple - if I can learn something new throughout the course of a debate I'm happy. LOL

What makes a good debate question? An open ended question which is known to incite a different opinion in individuals. It can't be too niche a topic where people would need specialist knowledge in order to take part; the question should be broad enough the people can put forward their views without having to have too much background information - considering this is IF and people from all ages and backgrounds comment here.




Can you really control what topic people should debate on? I would never want to put limitations or restrictions on topic just because we are all from different age group or back ground. I always believed that everyone is capable of debating on all topics, it's merely a choice! :)

Well no, I'm not controlling the debate question posed, I'm giving my opinion on the TM's original question ie 'What is a good debate question'. Apologies if the language I used made it seem like I'm issuing diktats Smile

I think many questions can become good debate questions if posed the right way. For example 'Do you like Justin Bieber'? may not be the best posed question, but 'With the rise in 'Internet stars' is talent becoming less important in achieving stardom?' could be a good one  it's broad, everyone uses the Internet, everyone knows about Biebs ie an example of an Internet star, and everyone could potentially give their views. 

I would not as people to give their views on the following: 'The Higgs-Boson particle has been putatively found; Particle Physics is at an impasse as a field. Discuss'. Too niche.


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BirdieNumNum--arti---Aarya-boreddamsel

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Goldie

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Posted: 08 March 2013 at 12:17pm | IP Logged
Originally posted by moomin4455

Originally posted by -Aarya-

Originally posted by moomin4455

I'm pretty simple - if I can learn something new throughout the course of a debate I'm happy. LOL

What makes a good debate question? An open ended question which is known to incite a different opinion in individuals. It can't be too niche a topic where people would need specialist knowledge in order to take part; the question should be broad enough the people can put forward their views without having to have too much background information - considering this is IF and people from all ages and backgrounds comment here.




Can you really control what topic people should debate on? I would never want to put limitations or restrictions on topic just because we are all from different age group or back ground. I always believed that everyone is capable of debating on all topics, it's merely a choice! :)

Well no, I'm not controlling the debate question posed, I'm giving my opinion on the TM's original question ie 'What is a good debate question'. Apologies if the language I used made it seem like I'm issuing diktats Smile

I think many questions can become good debate questions if posed the right way. For example 'Do you like Justin Bieber'? may not be the best posed question, but 'With the rise in 'Internet stars' is talent becoming less important in achieving stardom?' could be a good one  it's broad, everyone uses the Internet, everyone knows about Biebs ie an example of an Internet star, and everyone could potentially give their views. 

I would not as people to give their views on the following: 'The Higgs-Boson particle has been putatively found; Particle Physics is at an impasse as a field. Discuss'. Too niche.




I have always believed that "how you ask the question" is a key to getting the right answer! If the debate was about "Do you like Justin Bieber?", I would have to question the TM with the following:

please specify what do you mean by "like"...
- should I debate on his looks
- should I debate on his music
- should I debate on his acting
It's an endless list of questions and debatable items on that one question!
The point being that if I am not sure about the topic posted by TM then I would just ask to clarify!

I would debate on anything and everything, as long as the topic and contents are intriguing!


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