TFA Rules for Extemporaneous Speaking:
The Extemporaneous Speaking contest is designed to enable the student to speak in an integrated manner on a central idea, organize his/her ideas in a pattern which is meaningful to his/her listeners, and orally communicate his/her ideas effectively. This contest is similar in some respects to impromptu speaking in that the word extemporaneous is used to mean “on short notice.” It differs, however, in that although the specific extemporaneous speech has not been prepared in advance of the contest day, considerable preparation in terms of gathering, analyzing and organizing information about state, national, and international current events has gone on. A student may prepare for this contest by reading regularly such magazines as Time, Newsweek, and U.S. News and World Report.
1. There shall be two divisions: United States and International.
2. Topics are to be phrased in the form of a question.
3. Topics shall be from subjects discussed in standard periodicals of the current school year.
4. Thirty minutes before the contest is to begin, the first speaker shall draw three topics, choose one, and return the others. The other contestants shall draw in like manner, in their speaking order, at seven-minute intervals. A contestant drawing a topic on which s/he has spoken previously in the tournament shall return that topic and draw again.
5. After the contestant has chosen a topic, s/he shall withdraw to the preparation area and plan his/her speech without conferring or exchanging information with anyone. No prepared notes or outlines will be allowed in the preparation room. Contestants may refer to files containing books, book excerpts, periodicals, online retrievals from mass media publications, and/or photocopies of any of the above. Information retrieved from internet websites must include the URL citation. Cutting and pasting of multiple articles into a single document is not permitted. Once a contestant has chosen a topic, s/he may neither change from nor alter that topic. No visual aids may be used in the delivery of the speech. Contestants must present their topic slip to the judge(s) prior to speaking. Violation shall result in being disqualified from the event.
6. A note card may be used in preliminary rounds of Individual Qualifying Tournaments but is not permitted in any elimination rounds of these tournaments. Violation shall result in being ranked last in the round in which the violation occurred. Note: A note card may not be used in any round of the State Tournament.
7. Time limit is seven minutes maximum with a thirty-second grace period. Violation shall result in being ranked last in the round by the tab room when visible time signals have been given by the judge or by the authorized timekeepers.
8. At the State Tournament, the final round will include a cross-examination period, as described below. (Though not mandatory, Invitational Qualifying Tournaments are urged to use the cross-examination format in the final round.) Cross-Examination Procedure: Each speaker shall be assigned a position in the speaking order. Drawing shall take place at 12-minute intervals. Thirty minutes after Speaker 1 has drawn, Speaker last shall enter the contest room. Speaker 1 shall give his/her speech and Speaker last shall take notes and/or listen. At the conclusion of Speaker 1’s speech, Speaker last shall cross-examine Speaker 1 for a time period not to exceed three minutes. The cross-examination will be an open format, similar to the cross-examination period employed in the final round of the NFL National Tournament. Speaker last shall return to the prep room and Speaker 1 shall stay to listen to and question Speaker 2. Speaker 2 will question Speaker 3, etc.
9. Students can compete and qualify in both United States and International Extemporaneous Speaking, but s/he must choose one for TFA State.
10. The use of laptop computers by the competitors may be used during draw to retrieve information saved onto a storage device with the following provisions:
a. If the computer requires an insertable card in order to access a wireless connection, that card must be removed from the computer during the entirety of the round.
b. If the computer has built-in wireless capability, the wireless component must be inactive during the entirety of the round.
c. If a tournament official or competitor observes a competitor in the round using a computer which has the wireless card inserted or the built-in component left active, the student who has possession of the computer shall automatically be disqualified from that event for that tournament.
d. Laptops and any storage devices being used must be made available for review upon request of the tournament official.
e. Articles must be saved with the URL intact on the saved document.
f. All laptops and storage devices must be in compliance with the rules governing acceptable prep room materials.
g. Laptop computers may be used only for information retrieval.
h. Violation of any of the above conditions for the use of laptop computers in the extemp draw may result in the disqualification of any student(s) utilizing the laptop.