Persuasion, Communication and Debate. 

We exist to build people up as mature and powerful communicators. Communication is a discipline, not just a skill. Our training teaches students the discipline it takes to master communication. Ethos combines natural persuasion habits and methods, statistical data on communication techniques, and modern psychology. Join us in the timeless journey of rhetoric. We also teach collegiate and high school debate. 

Latest posts

1ACs In Real Life: A Grassroots Policy Push

Imagine if legislation were made by policy debaters. I recognize that some readers may be imagining a dystopian world where almost nothing gets done due to a paranoid fear of starting a nuclear war, and even I realize that a congress composed of policy debaters could...

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Speed Tip Series: Use Fewer Words

Have you ever played Mousetrap? You know, the game with the epic contraption: you turn the crank, which pulls back a sign, that slams into a bucket, that sets loose a marble, that slides down a pipe, that jostles a pole, that drops a marble, that flips a diver, that...

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Top 10 Reasons People DON’T Choose Ethos – Answered

Have you ever wished you could improve as a debater, but aren’t sure how? Have you thought about getting outside help or coaching, but you have some reservations? This post addresses some of the common objections that bar students from taking the next step in growing...

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Going Negative Unprepared

You listen as the Aff speaker presents their case. They drone through their introduction and into their first point, and a sinking feeling begins to slide its icy fingers around your heart. You’ve never prepared a negative strategy against this case; you don’t know...

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The Power of (Not-So) Useless Facts

Speakers who surprise, educate, and impress their audiences (by definition) keep their audience’s attention. If you’ve ever listened to a cool story or listened to a speech about a favorite subject, it is harder than normal to distract you. Bad speeches tend to cause...

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Spikes, Part 2: The 2AC

Last time, we introduced spikes and preemption, and saw what they look like in the 1AC. Today, we move to the 2AC, and next time we’ll talk about Neg. 2AC spikes exist to mitigate the Neg block by making the 1AR easier. This article does a wonderful job of outlining...

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The Stock Issues, Revisited

In mid-2017, I wrote an article describing what the stock issues are and why they are useful. I still recommend that article for a basic introduction into the stock issues, but since then, I have updated my views on the framework. This article presents a newer and...

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Stoa TP Webinar with Greg Rehmke!

Calling all Stoa TP Debaters! If you are looking for a spring case idea, or want help researching opponents cases, join Ethos Debate Fellow, Gregory Rehmke as he unpacks the Stoa TP resolution, and how you need to attack it. What cases are good, which ones are GREAT,...

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Lessons From An Impostor: The Psychology of Confidence

Have you ever listened to a presentation or speech, where the speaker is clearly not confident in themselves? It’s very awkward. Listeners and audience members can sense confidence almost better than sharks can smell blood. Confidence, or a lack thereof, bleeds out...

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Going on Offense: Spikes, Part 1

If you’ve ever played volleyball, you know the terror of a spike. A player slams the ball over the net so hard you have no hope of returning it. In debate, a spike is a little different, but still a powerful offensive tactic. Referring broadly to preemption, a spike...

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The Unrivaled Success of Ethos Debate

One of the most common questions we field is “why Ethos?” Feel free to take a look at our comprehensive model of education and debate here. But beyond that, the questioner usually is trying to ask one of two things: Why should I get coaching period? Why should I...

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7 Tips for Persuading Novice Judges

“I don’t understand. I had superior arguments, evidence, and refutation, but the judge voted for the other team.” I imagine every debater has felt this way at some point. Yet, even when we think we should win “on paper,” the judge is always right. Inevitably, you will...

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BAM – Miscommunication!

This post talks about communication in the real world. As you read, though, think about how these principles apply to debate and speech. As you practice these concepts in competition, you’re actually strengthening your conversations with family, friends, and...

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Debate. Is. Everywhere.

As a competitive high school debater, one of my pet peeves was when people would say to me, “Oh, I’d be great at debate. I love arguing with people!” It frustrated me that they would reduce debate to mere argumentation, because there is so much more to it....

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Practical Principles: The Bad Precedent DA, Part 2

Last week, I introduced the Bad Precedent DA. It’s a great way to take a principle-based argument and turn it into a practical impact. We've already seen the big picture and one way to structure this kind of DA. Now, we’ll take a look at another type of structure, how...

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