Overview of an Ethics Bowl

What to Expect during the Day

An Ethics Bowl has three competitive components:

  1. round robin, involving all teams
  2. semi-finals, with four highest scoring teams
  3. final round to determine the winning team

What happens in a round?

The room is set up as illustrated below. A moderator conducts the proceedings, poses a question related to cases the students have researched, and keeps track of time. Three judges evaluate team performances. (The audience does not participate.)

 

Steps in a Round

Each round involves two cases, and each team takes the “lead” on one case. The following steps show Team A as the lead on the first case:

Case #1

Moderator flips a coin, winning team chooses to lead or pass on Case #1. Moderator poses question for Case #1.

  1. Team A has 2 minutes to confer; 5 minutes to present position on Case #1.
  2. Team B has 1 minute to confer; 3 minutes to respond/ask questions.
  3. Team A has 1 minute to confer; 3 minutes to respond to Team B.
  4. Judges have 10 minutes to question Team A. (See Sample Questions.)
  5. Judges score both teams for Case #1 and write feedback for both teams.
  6. Moderator poses question for Case #2.
  7. Team B has 2 minutes to confer; 5 minutes to present position on Case #2.
  8. Team A has 1 minute to confer; 3 minutes to respond/ask questions.
  9. Team A has 1 minute to confer; 3 minutes to respond to Team B.
  10. Judges have 10 minutes to question Team B. (See Sample Questions.)
  11. Judges score both teams for Case #2 and write feedback for both teams.

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