Komunikacijske vještine

Karl Popper debate

Goal of the practical class

The goal of the practical class is to hold Karl Popper debate adjusted to the number of students in a group.


This practical class deals with the topic announced in the previous classes. Prior to the class attendance, the students should study the assigned topic and the theoretical background of the class.


Standard Karl Popper debate includes the total of six speakers. As the number of students in the group is rarely a multiple of the number six, the debate might expand to eight or ten speakers when necessary. If the number of the speakers exceeds ten, the students are divided in two groups discussing at the same time.

This instruction reflects a real situation in our classroom and it shows expanded version of Karl Popper Debate with eight speakers. The delivery method presented here is a result of adjustment of the standard Karl Popper Debate in accordance with materials owned by Croatian Debate Society which are available here.

Delivery method

The students are divided into two teams. The first team supports a resolution and they are called affirmative (A), while the other team counters the resolution, rebutting the affirmative team and they are called negative (N).

Debate procedure includes the exactly defined order of speeches and cross examinations. Speeches of the first debaters of every team take six minutes each, while speeches of other debaters take five minutes each. Cross-examinations last three minutes each.

Each team has 10 minutes in total for consultations. The time allocated for consultations cannot be used during speeches or cross-examination. Apart from these limits, the teams use their consultation time as they find it convenient.

Debate is going on according to the following order:

A1 speaks 6 min
N3 cross-examines A1 3 min
N1 speaks 6 min
A3 cross-examines N1 3 min
A2 speaks 5 min
N1 cross-examines A2 3 min
N2 speaks 5 min
A1 cross-examines N2 3 min
A3 speaks 5 min
N2 cross-examines A3 3 min
 N3 speaks 5 min
A2 cross-examines N3 3 min
A4 speaks 5 min
N4 speaks 5 min



Hrvatsko debatno društvo (Croatian Debate Society): Karl Popper debata (Karl Popper Debate, in Croatian), Zagreb 2012, text available here.


Theoretical background