Author: Grant Brown

A Statistical Analysis Of Side-Bias On The 2018 November-December Lincoln-Douglas Debate Topic

A Statistical Analysis of Side-Bias on the 2018 November-December Lincoln-Douglas Debate Topic By Sachin Shah Due to the strong response to the September-October side-bias study, a subsequent analysis of the 2018 November-December Lincoln-Douglas topic is merited to ascertain if the pattern of negative side bias holds. While the technical concerns raised with prior studies were addressed and resolved in the September-October side bias article, there remain a few potential concerns related to judge variability. This study will avoid the known potential pitfalls with statistical studies outlined in the September-October side bias article. Although this topic has just started, most tournaments on this topic occur in November, presumably as semester exams and winter break deter tournament hosting in December. Affirmative and negative ballots were gathered via tabroom.com and speechwire.com from six Tournament of Champions bid distributing tournaments across the country: The 33rd Annual MinneApple Debate Tournament, Florida Blue Key Speech and Debate Tournament 2018, Damus Hollywood Invitational, Badgerland, The Tradition Cypress Bay, and The 15th Scarsdale Invitational. These tournaments range from octofinal to final bid level qualifier tournaments. Semifinal and final bid level tournaments were included in this analysis to provide sufficient data at this stage (early November) in the topic. This data set has a large sample size of 1701 ballots and represents fairly diverse debating style. These tournaments span the country from the west coast, where utilitarian rounds are...

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