Penn Speech & Debate


Welcome to the website of the University of Pennsylvania's Speech and Debate team!



Penn Speech competes on the national AFA, NFA, CFA, CPF, APDA, and NPDA college circuits. We compete in Individual Events encompassing Extemporaneous Speaking, Impromptu, Persuasion, Poetry Interpretation, Prose, Program Oral Interpretation, Dramatic Interpretation, Duo Interpretation, Informative Speaking, and After Dinner Speaking. 

Penn Debate competes on the national NFA-LD college circuit. NFA-LD is similar to both high school policy debate (in that resolutions deal with a policy issue that should be addressed by the United States federal government) and high school Lincoln-Douglas debate (in that NFA-LD is a one-on-one debate activity). Debate also competes on the NPDA Parliamentary Debate Circuit and on the national Public Forum Circuit. 

Tradition of Success
The Penn Speech and Debate Team has a long history of success. Over the past ten years, numerous Penn competitors have also reached elimination rounds in the NFA national tournament and competed in national championships. More information about specific awards by year is here: Results & Awards

Becoming a Member 
We are constantly growing and seeking fresh talent for the upcoming school year. If you are a motivated individual and interested in joining a competitive and social team, try out! Experience is preferred, but not necessary. 

At the beginning of each semester, the team will hold tryouts for all those interested in competing. Anyone may join the team as a non-competing member. All inquiries for membership and other information should be sent through our form here: Contact Us