The Berkeley Master Class

Do you know the fundamentals of parliamentary debate backwards and forwards, but want help implementing them properly? Are you ready for advanced file-writing, in-depth lectures on critical theory, and learning through speech redos and repetition? Then Master Class is for you. 

The Master Class will prepare you for the competitive circuit with the knowledge you need to run (and beat) kritiks, the skills you'll use to win rounds and tournaments, and the friendships that will get you through thick and thin for the rest of your debate career. 

Please note that Master Class requires extensive varsity-level experience, including previous familiarity with answering and running kritiks and theory. This program is ideal for debaters who have already participated in the High School Program at the Group C or Group D level, as well as debaters with mid-to-late varsity elimination round appearances in their most recent season (quarterfinals, semifinals, finals, etc).

Quick Facts

Staff/Student Ratio of 1:8 or better 

11 days of debate learning

20+ practice rounds


2019 Dates: July 28th - August 7th

2019 Residential Tuition: $2545

2019 Commuter Tuition: $1905

Master class tournament rounds

An advanced, essential curriculum

Master Class students already know the basics, so our curriculum focuses on the details: strategic moves for each speaker, topics that you most want to learn about, and the kritikal education you need to succeed. 

Integrated into the curriculum are more than 20 practice and tournament rounds, dedicated to giving each debater experience with diverse topics. You'll further develop your skills with extensive time for drills: redoing speeches, getting up to speed, and drilling through the basics to deepen your understanding. 

With lots of time for personal development, you'll surely have room to grow. 

Research time in Master Class

Dedicated Research Time

In Master Class, research time makes up an important part of the curriculum: debaters write files in research pods, compile their resources to make a research packet, and test out their files in specialized debate rounds. 

With multiple hours per day dedicated to writing files, you'll have the energy you need to work out the cases you'll be able to use all year— and plenty of time in the evenings to polish them up. 

That makes Master Class the perfect place to prepare for the season. 


Friends, Partners, and Family

Debaters come to Master Class from various circuits, but they leave camp a part of their own community. 

With an intense atmosphere of preparation, a group of people who love and dedicate themselves to debate, and lots of time to bond, Master Class gives you the chance to meet your newest group-chat, build your tournament support system, and make friends for a lifetime. 

MasterClass bookstore trip
MasterClass prepping

Sample schedule

8:30 - 9AM — Breakfast in the Dining Hall

9AM - 10AM — Morning Drills

10 - 11:20AM — Speaker Strategy Lecture

11:20AM - 12PM — Prep Drills

12 - 1PM — Lunch in the Dining Hall

1 - 4:40PM — Afternoon Practice Rounds

4:40 - 5:20PM — Speech Redos

5:20 - 6:20PM — Afternoon Lecture

6:20 - 7:20PM — Dinner in the Dining Hall

7:20 - 8:30PM — Research Time

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what do students say?

I learned more at camp in 2 weeks than I had in 3 years of debate class! The practice rounds everyday kept us on our toes and lectures supplemented everything we were getting feedback on in round.
— Annika, Ashland High School
I’ve been looking forward to Master Class for years, and being surrounded by people who are as equally dedicated at debate as me and around my skill level has been very rewarding and educational.
— Jessica, Pioneer High School
POI helps to reiterate the flexibility and rigorous ability to adapt that parli warrants, and being able to hone that in a welcoming setting was a valuable and immeasurable experience.
— Jon, Archbishop Mitty High School
[W]e were able to both build on our strengths and work on our weaknesses which is key to taking the next step towards being a national champion.
— Ben, The Nueva School