Canadian Student Debating Federation (CSDF) 
2017 National Seminar Application


CSDF 2017 National Seminar Application 

Dear OSDU Members, Coaches and Students, 

Your schools are invited to have students apply for the annual CSDF National Seminar to be held in Port Hope and Cobourg, Ontario. The event runs from Wednesday, October 11 to Saturday, October 14. You are expected to arrive in Cobourg to register at the Best Western Hotel on Tuesday, and to stay until check-out time on Sunday, October 15 in the morning. Debating events take place at Trinity College School in Port Hope. The theme of the Seminar will be “Electoral Reform in Canada”.

This year’s National Seminar will be co-chaired by Nicole Ratti and Chris George, and is a special event since we are also celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the National Seminar, which started in 1967 at Trinity College School.


As you will know, the National Seminar is a cultural and educational event and debating taking place in a non-competive format If you are an experienced debater, with lots of competitive experience, the Seminar is not for you! In fact, anyone who has attended Oxford Cup, Senior Nationals, Worlds Tryouts, has international experience, etc. is not eligible to attend. Those who have attended Junior Nationals are eligible, however, keep in mind the nature of the event and if you have extensive competitive debate experience, then you likely would not be selected. As per the event invitation, we are looking for students are “keen to learn more about debate, and whose selection will most benefit themselves and their school”.

Students may be in any grade from 9 to 12 in September 2017, and may not have attended the national seminar before. Please note that all seminar delegates are required to attend the duration of the Seminar, including accommodation at the hotel, all meals, social outing, debate activities, etc. This is a non-negotiable point. Students when they register will be required to sign off acknowledging this, so if you will not approve of arrangements made, or may have commitments that you may want to leave the Seminar to attend, please do not apply.

Mandatory Student Chaperone

As well, all students must have an official chaperone. Please note that OSDU will not provide a chaperone who is legally responsible for the students. Each school must make arrangements suitable to them, OSDU, and the organizers. This can be a parent, teacher, or other adult delegate. Nothing precludes schools from making chaperoning arrangements amongst themselves, so you may wish to consider this. Just be aware students may not attend without someone specifically responsible for their supervision, and that the OSDU board will not provide such a person for obvious liability reasons.

Selection Process

OSDU currently has been allocated a total of 13 delegates, but a number of these will be allocated for the French and Bilingual categories. As per previous years, we will select based on an application process. OSDU also must make every effort to encourage participation from a diverse representation of debate schools, regions, etc. Under no circumstances will more than one English delegate be selected per school.


The registration fee is $650 per student delegate. This includes all accommodation, meals, activities, etc. for 5 nights. The cost per adult delegate ( in double accommodation ) is the same. Very limited rooms for adults in single rooms are available at $1000. In terms of transportation, the CSDF receives funding for official delegates’ travel. Further information will be provided later, but delegates will have the option to drive ( at their own expense and with coaches/parents only doing the driving! ), take the train, or we may arrange something depending on numbers and location, etc. However, we will likely encourage you to take the train ( to Cobourg ), and while you will need to cover the cost upfront, it will likely be reimbursed to a level of 100% after the Seminar.

Application Deadline

In terms of the OSDU application, we are setting a deadline of Friday, May 5. Please fill out the attached Word document. The OSDU board will have a committee that will review the applications with the aim to get students selected by the following week. You will then have a deadline of about three weeks after that ( to June 1 ) to complete the CSDF online registration process. The fee will also be due in June, sent to the OSDU Treasurer, but more details will be provided later, and we will also provide details about booking transportation to those selected.

Additional Information

Please see the following website for more information:

If you have any questions, please contact me. The OSDU application for the Seminar is included below.

Nicole Ratti
OSDU President

FILE: CSDF 2017 National Seminar Application Form