Is boyfriend-girlfriend quarrel a debate?

(Excerpted from the speech delivered by the author as guest speaker in the launching of a debate society of a university in Quezon City, Philippines on August 25, 2006)

… ACADEMIC DEBATE is not synonymous to ‘ordinary conversation’, pagtatalo ng magkasintahan, pagtatalo ng mag-ina and pilosopohan ng magbabarkada. What makes academic debate different from these forms of conversation is the presence of at least five (5) elements:

I. Proposition - the issue or topic to be discussed

Some of the features that need to be present in a statement for it to be considered as a proposition in a debate are:

            A) It must contain only one topic (and the topic should not change throughout the debate).

This is one of the reasons why ordinary conversation does not qualify as debate. In ordinary conversation, as we all know, topic shifts and even branches out. The topic in pagtatalo ng magboyfriend likewise shifts—that it may start with the guy’s being late in the date and end up with his infidelity in the past which he adamantly denies.

          Similarly, pagtatalo ng mag-ina may begin with argumentation about who should wash the dishes and conclude with the daughter’s untimely romantic engagement with, let say, a ‘seminarian’.

            B) It must be controversial or debatable. ‘Propositions’ like, “Resolved that, Triangle has three sides” or that, “Man is spelled m-a-n” are good only for aliens perhaps. In Logic, there are statements called  ‘tautologies’. Tautology is always true but oftentimes not worth saying, much less becoming a proposition in an academic debate.

            C) It must always be in the affirmative form that the burden of proof is on the affirmative side.

‘Proposition’ like “Patutunayan ko na walang Sta. Claus” is not a good proposition, for the burden of proof should primarily be on the side of the one who wants to prove that there is Sta. Claus. On the other hand, the proposition, “Patutunayan ko na ang hindi marunong magmahal sa sariling wika ay hindi higit sa hayop at hindi malansang isda,” does not only confuse the debaters on who should take the burden of proof, but also leaves everyone else guessing what the topic really is. Lesson learned: Fill the proposition with negative terms and the debate will become a stand-up comedy!

II. Presence of two opposing views

This is self-explanatory. Even crazy people probably would not engage in a debate on a particular topic on which they have the same stand. No opposing views, no debate. Technically, a discussion is as well not an academic debate if on a specific issue, there are more than two (2) various views. That is the case with pilosopohan ng magbabarkada—in a single issue, aside from the extreme views, the positive and the negative, there are usually middle grounds. ‘In-between’ positions in academic debate call for another independent debate.

III. Form or format

Two (2) of the most common forms of debate are the (1) Traditional or Oxford debate, particularly the Oxford-Oregon, and the (2) Parliamentary form of debate. In due time, you will be introduced to the rules and procedures of these forms of debates.

            Experiences taught me the lesson that it is a must for a debater to be familiar with the rules of the debate. A good debater must also know how to exploit even the rules of the debate in convincing the judges that his team deserves to win. “Winning by technicality” is winning nevertheless! After all, academic debate is just a contest, and so here, winning, oftentimes, is everything.

IV. The presence of a moderator

The role to be played by the moderator requires him to be neutral or unbiased. Unfortunately, it is extremely difficult to look for a person who is genuinely non-partisan and we have no conclusive yardstick to determine whether or not a certain moderator is unprejudiced.

Whenever I am appointed to train and coach the university’s representatives in debate competitions, I just wish that the moderator would be fair enough—or if he is partial, I just wish that he would be biased on our side…

V. Time element

Everything in academic debate is timed. Speeches, interpellations, point of information, and point of order are timed—and so is break. A debater therefore must learn to be brief and concise. To emphasize this point, most of the debate instructors and lecturers make use of the term “brief” instead of just “short” …

Related article/s:

Is academic debate the same as religious debate?

How to cite this article:

Jensen DG. Mañebog. “A Lecture on Academic Debate.” @

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So how about written debates that are popular online? Would you consider them academic debates if the above-mentioned first four elements are present but number-of-words-per-post is used in lieu of the time element?

This blog or articles tackles about the elements of a debate.And it also explains what must be remember when your doing a debate. The different views in a debate.

This articles gives us idea on what really the difference of an academic debate from usual debate, like having argument with barkada. Besides, it also gives us idea/tips on important things we should know in an academic debate, which will help us in further knowledge on what we should expect in our class.

DIFFERENCE BETWEEN ACADEMIC DEBATE FROM ORDINARY CONVERSATION This article explain how a debate is being performed and it shows the elements that an academic debate have than to those forms of ordinary conversations.

This articles expand our knowledge helps you get along with your friends better and you meet smart like-minded people like yourself. It builds leaders that will make these decisions.


The article states facts and different important pointers of a successful academic debate. In short, it is a guideline. It widens someones knowledge on the difference of an ACADEMIC Debate to an ordinary CONVERSATION.

Academic debate is not one and the same in ordinary conversations;There are Five elements that help the student to be aware on what should be prepared/build up in academic debate. this article let us be familiar with terms and elements that make academic debate different from ordinary conversations.

"it must contain only one topic" is the most common and familiar difference between the two. I agree with this. Jumping from one topic to another is improper. On the other hand, a debate is stocked into only one topic which makes it proper.

The article telling us that in order to form a debate , we must know the five elements of a debate . There are rules to be followed . We can't say that ordinary conversations is a debate, it has no specific topic they want to discussed.

ACADEMIC DEBATE is not synonymous to ‘ordinary conversation’. This article shows the difference between debate and ordinary conversation as to their elements which make the readers not to be confused. It gives us the necessary information on how to be a good and effective debater. Therefore, pagtatalo ng mag-boyfriend is not considered as a debate because the necessary elements to consider it as a debate were not present.

The above article discussed the elements that is present in a debate which are absent in an ordinary conversation.The above facts are true for i myself know that during an ordinary conversation there is no definite topic,it may vary as many times as the people talking want to unlike in a debate, there is a certain topic to discuss or to argue.

This article tackles about what are the difference between a ordinary conversation which is "pagtatalo ng boyfriend/girlfrend" and an academic debate. Because in academic debate there are rules or guideline that must be followed to be considered to ba a Academic debate.

this article tackles about the difference between a ordinary conversation which is "pag tatalo ng boyfriend/girlfriend" and an Academic debate. because in a academic debate there are rules or guidelines to be consider a academic debate.

The article states the difference between the academic debate and ordinary conversation. It explains about the elements and guidelines of an academic debate. Which broadens our knowledge in performing it.

This article states the different elements that an academic and ordinary debate should have. It also discuss the format and the necessary requisites for this kind of debate. It may help in case of having an explanatory of a particular topic.

the article gives us knowledge about debate that there is a difference between an ordinary conversation and debate. Because a debate should only have one topic while a conversation has shifting topics.

not all argumentation/conversation can be considered as debate.simply because academic debate follows a format or some elements are need to be presented while ordinary conversation has none .

"It must be controversial or debatable." Disagree. I usual disagreement between lovers is not considered a debate because a debate follows certain rules and regulations regarding time, topic and issues.

The above article contains the elements of a an academic debate. IT states the requirements of a good proposition,the opposing teams,form of debate, speaks of the moderator, and the time element. It also distinguished debate from ordinary conversation. By reading the above article, gives me the idea of what really a debate is. Because it provides some information about debate. That pagtatalo ng magkasintahan is not a debate at all. And in every debate, we should try our very best to win.

''the Religious Debate are base in the Verse of the Bible, events stated in the bible and so on..that relating about religious premises...but Academic Debate are more broaden than that..therefore..I agree that religious and academic debate are not the same..''

These are the elements that we should consider in forming a debate. An ARGUMENT is derived from feelings as opposed to simply having a different point of view means that there are no rules. no guidelines that each opponent should consider, IT IS INFORMAL. while in DEBATE, a formal discussion involving opposing viewpoints.The affirmative and negative view are advocated by opposing speakers. Ergo,pagtatalo ng mag-boyfriend is not a debate at all.It is an informal conversation that there's no rules/guidelines to follow.

the debate of couple is different from any debate because it will have a common sense and argumentation from both part.

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