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How to write an affirmative case


Your plan will have basically 4 components, although plans can take several different lengths, forms, and levels of complexity. This is just a basic sketch of an average case. If you want to see an example then click here. You donít have to follow it to the letter just use it as a jumping off point. You will need:

  1. Mandates or Plan Planks: this is where you tell what you are going to do and how your plan is going to do it.
  2. Funding: you probably need to have money coming from somewhere in order to implement your plan. This is where you'll explain where the necessary funding will come from. You donít have to have it but without it your hurting solvency and opening yourself up to an effective no cash/no plan attack.
  3. Enforcement: depending on your plan, you are likely expecting some type of action to take place that someone is responsible for doing. You need to have some idea of how to make sure that the responsible person does what they are supposed to do.

There should be certain reasons why doing the plan your way is a good thing. There are sometimes other benefits not directly related to your actual goal, or maybe just incidental good things that will come from your plan. This is where evidence of those things go. For example, an advantage to increasing computer classes is that it will foster more students to go to the technology sector which is in desperate need of more people and helps the economy by stimulating growth.


The structure of the affirmative case can vary widely, however there is an order that you should probably start off with until you gain more experience and understanding.

  1. Inherency
  2. Significance/harms
  3. Plan
  4. Solvency
  5. Advantages

Itís okay to switch the position of your inherency stuff and your significance/harms stuff, just be sure to keep all of the same kind of evidence together.

Put your case and plan together in outline form, with "tags" (the little statement you read before you read the evidence that basically summarizes whatever the evidence says), and "cards" (the actual piece of evidence that you got from your research that proves what you are trying to argue). Based on the structure above, here is an example of what the skeleton of your case should look like.

1. Inherency

2. Significance

  1. tag, followed by evidence
  2. tag, followed by evidence

3. Harms

4. Plan

5. Solvency

6. Advantages

You can have as many sub-points, tags and cards as you need or want, but keep in mind not to go over the time limits. Your case should be tightly organized around an outline form, because it makes it easier for the judge and the negative team to keep up with what you are arguing. Remember this is just a starting sketch try writing it in different ways until you are comfortable with your case.