Spanish Language Debate

Spanish Debate TeamLos Legados de Valladolid

Cal Poly Debate Team and the World Languages and Cultures Department are pleased to invite your university to send debaters to our first annual Spanish language, public debate entitled Los Legados de Valladolid, March 9 - 11, 2018

The inspiration for this debate is the Junta de Valladolid (1550-1551), the first moral debate held by a colonizing force regarding the legitimacy of colonization. The impact of colonization is widespread and ever-present and, to this end, the Legacies of Valladolid — Legados de Valladolid — provides a forum to examine current political trends, national and international policies, and pervasive ideologies that affect our national and global climate. 

We are inviting teams of debaters from universities across the United States to come and address these issues in a public forum of debate. The style is that of the Lafayette Debates. We have slots for 16 teams (2 debaters per team), and will be accepting teams on a first-come-first-serve basis.  

How to Register

  • To register, please email the names of your two-person student teams and the institution they will be representing to Dr. Marion Hart mhart03@calpoly.edu
  • Please identify the name of any judge(s) that you can supply for either day of the tournament (please specify), as well as a paragraph biography.  All judges must be fluent in Spanish, and have either debate experience or familiarity/background in the field.
  • Please provide complete contact information for your institution’s representative including: name, contact number(s), and email address.  Your email should have the subject line: “Legado de Valladolid Inscripción – [Name of your school]”
  • View the event website for more information. 

Cal Poly Debate Team About Cal Poly Spanish Language Debate

The study of forensics prepares students for professions in the legal fields and political science. Spanish language debate utilizes these skills and knowledge sets to prepare multilingual professionals for their interdisciplinary futures. Since January 2017, Mr. Christopher Skiles, Dr. John Patrick and Dr. Marion Hart have been engaged in the creation and development of the highly successful Spanish language division of the Cal Poly Debate team. In March, we took two teams of Spanish language debaters with no more than seven weeks of experience debating in Spanish to within one point of the finals at the Pan American Universities Debating Championship. In July 2017, Cal Poly sent one team to Guatemala City, Guatemala to debate as Finalists in Spanish as a Second Language at the Spanish Worlds (Campeonato Mundial Universitario de Debate en Español).  

As Spanish language debate is still very much in its infancy in the United States, it is essential to nurture debate at other educational intuitions. With the collaboration of Dras. Ana Gomez and Claudia Plascencia from Allan Hancock College, we co-sponsored our first annual Equinos Chatos with great success on October 28, 2017.


Tradicionalmente, el estudio de la retórica prepara a los estudiantes para profesiones en el ámbito legal y las ciencias políticas.  El debate en español utiliza estas herramientas y conocimientos para preparar a profesionales políglotas para un futuro interdisciplinario.  Desde enero de 2017, el Sr. Christopher Skiles, Dr. John Patrick and Dra. Marion Hart han fomentado y dirigido el desarrollo de una exitosa división del equipo de debate de Cal Poly.  En marzo del mismo año, llevamos dos equipos de debatientes con poco más que 7 semanas de preparación en el debate en español a rozar las rondas finales en el Pan American Universities Debating Championship.  En julio, un equipo de debatientes de Cal Poly llegó a la Ciudad de Guatemala para debatir como finalistas en la división de ELE el Campeonato Mundial Universitario de Debate en Español (CMUDE).  

Como el debate en español todavía se encuentra en su infancia en Estados Unidos, es esencial promoverlo entre otros organismos educativos.  Así, con la colaboración de las Dras. Ana Gómez y Claudia Plasciencia de Allan Hancock College, entre muchos vítores hemos estrenado el primer debate anual Equinos Chatos, el 28 de octubre de 2017.

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