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Students develop their thinking through researching the case for and against big ideas, ethical dilemmas and controversial issues. Debates provide a platform for sharing research at the same time as developing public speaking skills, and present many opportunities for engaging a variety of audiences. They can be opened up to the public, for example, or judged as a competition.
The Faculty of Business has held extracurricular debates for the last two years on business ethics, and offered students the chance of thorough preparation in “argumentation sessions”. The debates themselves have concerned important issues such as gender equality in the work place, “fat cat salaries”, and the environmental responsibilities of the energy sector. Debaters are judged on how well they present the multifaceted ethical dilemmas and how persuasively they argue a case. Audience participation is also encouraged.