Why Public Forum?

PF is an accessible form of competitive political debate that pushes students' academic and social skills to their absolute limits.

  • Accessible

    PF is accessible for any middle- or high-school student to begin practicing debate. It leaves students open to many options, including cross-applicability to World Schools, collegiate Policy debate, and a host of speech events.

  • Academic Skills

    PF incorporates critical thinking, research, writing, evidence, speaking and, of course, debate. These are the skills that let students excel in university-- and beyond.

  • Social Skills

    PF requires teamwork and emphasizes both individual responsibility and group accountability. Mastering PF means mastering public speaking, voicing opinions and juggling complex issues.

Watch Intro Video

Introduction to Public Forum

discover what PF can do for you

Why Debate?

science shows debate has a powerful effect on students

  • Academic Success

    Debaters have higher GPAs, ACT scores, and are more likely to graduate. (Mezuk et al. 2011) In fact, debaters are 3X more likely to graduate from highschool as non-debaters (Anderson & Mezuk 2012).

  • All Ages

    The effect of debate on high school students is well-known: but these academic effects extend even to elementary- and middle-school students (Shackelford 2019).

  • All Students

    In fact, the Urban Debate Leagues of Chicago Baltimore, and Houston are all case studies of how debate can help low-income and at-risk students. These debaters are more likely to go on to college after high school. (Shackleford et al. 19)

Course Features

  • Video Intros

    Each chapter includes a video intro to deliver an overview of the section and cater to multiple learning styles.

  • 10 Mini-books

    Mini-books provide detailed guides for the intricacies of formal debate-- these guides can be accessed and referenced forever.

  • Quizzes

    Graded quizzes evaluate your understanding of each section.

  • Worksheets

    Apply your learning with worksheets that let you experiment with and solidify each of the skills you learn.

  • Group Rates

    Debate is a group activity. Email us for group rates of 2 or more students-- up to half off.

  • Do good.

    Debatetrack donates 10% of all profits to givewell.org. We hope to increase this percentage as we grow.

Self-guided & Certificate

Certificate course includes an audit of all materials you'll produce in this course, including corrections and individual guidance. You'll also graduate with an official certificate. Contact us for details on our limited certificate course.


see what our customers & fans have to say

Christina Moreno, Illinois, 15

My team doesn’t have a coach, so Debatetrack is literally our coach. We're having our freshmen do this PF course to understand all the basics.

Mr. Gergel, Nebraska

I started assigning Debatetrack videos to my PF students last year and their topic understanding is markedly improved.

Monica Sanchez, Maryland

Aiden and Jack [her sons, 12 & 14] had never done debate before the PF Essentials course…it gave them a big head start when joining their school team.

Curtis Lee, Malaysia, 11

This class was hard but now I really know how to debate. Thank you Mr. Joel.

Souheil Boustani, New York, 14

The course was analytical but had plenty of application, especially with the worksheets. Would recommend to any new debate student.

Submit your own testimonial!

Send your name, age & location -- along with a clean headshot and your review-- to joel@debatetrack.com.

Course curriculum

  • 3

    Chapter 2: The Resolution

    • Intro: The Resolution

    • Reading: The Resolution

    • Quiz: The Resoluttion

    • Worksheet 2a: Rez Cats

    • Worksheet 2b: Balanced Rez

    • End of Chapter Survey - 2

  • 4

    Chapter 3: Evidence & Research

    • Intro: Evidence & Research

    • Reading: Evidence & Research

    • Quiz: Evidence & Research

    • Worksheet 3a: Brief Dissection

    • Worksheet 3b: Evidence Grader

    • Worksheet 3c: Soft Upgrade

    • Worksheet 3d: Your First Brief

    • End of Chapter Survey - 3

  • 5

    Chapter 4: Making a Case

    • Reading: Making a Case

    • Intro: Making a Case

    • Quiz: Making a Case

    • Worksheet 4a: Strat Sesh

    • Worksheet 4b: Rhetoric Rewrite

    • Worksheet 4c: Your First Case(s)

    • End of Chapter Survey - 4

  • 6

    Chapter 5: Weighing

    • Intro: Weighing

    • Reading: Weighing

    • Quiz: Weighing

    • Worksheet 5: Gym Sesh

    • End of Chapter Survey - 5

  • 7

    Chapter 6: Flow

    • Reading: Flow

    • Quiz: Flow

    • Intro: The Constructive Speech

    • Worksheet 6a: Issue ID

    • Worksheet 6b: Flowy Flow

    • Worksheet 6c: Flowy Flow, Again

    • End of Chapter Survey - 6

  • 8

    Chapter 7: 1st Speech: Constructive

    • Intro: Constructive

    • Reading: Constructive

    • Quiz: the Constructive

    • Worksheet: 7 Delivery C

    • End of Chapter Survey - 7

  • 9

    Chapter 8: 2nd Speech: Rebuttal

    • Intro: The Rebuttal

    • Reading: Rebuttal

    • Quiz: the Rebuttal

    • Flowsheets -- Worksheet 8a

    • Worksheet 8a: Strat-re-gy

    • Worksheet 8b: Delivery R

    • End of Chapter Survey - 8

  • 10

    Chapter 9: 3rd Speech: Summary

    • Intro: The Summary

    • Reading: Summary

    • Quiz: the Summary

    • Worksheet 9a: Jumping to Conclusions

    • Worksheet 9b: Director

    • Worksheet 9c: Double Trouble

    • End of Chapter Survey - 9

  • 11

    Chapter 10: 4th Speech: Final Focus

    • Intro: Final Focus

    • Reading: Final Focus

    • the Final Focus

    • Worksheet 10: Double Trouble, Round 2

    • End of Chapter Survey - 10


  • Why the price?

    My in-person students pay about $2000 for the year of classes where these skills are presented. Camps typically run $500-1500 per week. My goal with Debatetrack is to make learning debate i. cheaper ii. more accessible and iii. more effective.

  • What are your credentials?

    I've taught Public Forum Debate for 5 years, and been a teacher for 10+ years. It's my speciality. I also hold graduate teaching certificates from 3 top education colleges. (UBC, Michigan & Harvard). This is what I do.

  • How long will the course take?

    A full-time student (8 hours/day) will take about a two weeks to complete. Part time will take about a month, etc.

  • Do you offer discounts for low-income students?

    Send me an email and let me know your situation: joel@debatetrack.com

  • I have other questions.

    Send me an email: joel@debatetrack.com

  • Do you accept crypto?

    Kidding, nobody's ever asked this. But sure. ETH, HBAR, ADA & Monero. Shoot me an email.

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