NPSC 2014

National Public Speaking Competition 2014 is organised by the English-Speaking Union of Estonia. It is aimed at young people who strive to achieve excellence in English and make active use of the English language. This competition gives students the opportunity to express their opinions to a young audience, who like themselves, are facing questions about their own lives and their hopes for the future. There are seven themes for the National Round 2014. Participants may interpret the chosen theme in any way they wish, but may not use the theme as the title of their speech. The chosen topic and title cannot be changed during the competition.

RULES  of the ESU NATIONAL PUBLIC SPEAKING COMPETITION 2014
The National Public Speaking Competition is based on the same rules as those of the highly successful English-Speaking Union International Public Speaking Competition. The aim is to give young people practical experience in the art of public speaking. It also gives them the opportunity to express their views on topics of national and international interest.

1. Eligibility
The ESU Estonia Public Speaking Competition is open to 16 to 20 year old students attending secondary schools (i.e. the youngest possible competitor would have his/her 16th birthday no later than on the day of the prize-giving event of the International Final in London on May 18th, 2012 and the oldest possible competitor would turn 21 the day after the competition of the International Final in London ends).
Each school may nominate a maximum of two students to participate in the preliminary rounds. Selection is the responsibility of the schools.
Competitors are required to speak on a chosen topic for five minutes, followed by a four minutes period (answer at least 2 questions from the judges and 2 questions from the audience), so questions need to be answered briefly and to the point.

2. Themes  of the NPSC 2014 :

  • To be Human is to Discuss (ESU)
  • How Estonia and the UK can work better together (UK Embassy Tallinn)
  • The highest result of education is tolerance US Embassy Tallinn)
  • Equality of opportunity vs equality of outcome (Joonas Põder, NPSC 2013, finalist)
  • Ideas Are Our Greatest Weapons
  • The best things in life are free
  • The Internet and instant communications are profoundly changing our future for the better 

Speakers may interpret the theme in any way they wish, but may not use the theme (topic) as the title of their speech.

The organisers reserve the right to reject unsuitable titles or topics. It is appreciated that speakers have limited time to make their case and competitors’ persuasiveness and ingenuity in dealing with the subject is of considerable importance. Although the judges may penalise the treatment of any subject they consider offensive, unnecessary flippant or outside the aims of the competition, speakers should not be afraid to be provocative, hard-hitting or humorous as long as their intention is clearly constructive. It is advisable to ensure that the speech – and this applies especially to a more light-hearted topic – has pith and substance. Speakers must avoid speeches that are likely to be perceived as doctrinal or political.

3. Timing
The timing of a heat and the Final are the same. The Chair of the session will introduce the speaker. Each speaker is allocated 5 minutes with a margin of 30 seconds either way.  Marks will be deducted for speeches which vary from this limit. After 4.30 minutes a signal is given that the speech must be finished within 1 minute. After 5 minutes another audible signal indicates that 30 seconds remains to end the speech. After 5.30 minutes the last audible signal indicates the end of the speaking time (at which point the participant must conclude their speech immediately). The speech will be followed by a question period of 4 minutes. The speaker will deal with the questions without an intermediary. One of the Judges or member of the Question Team will ask the first question, followed by questions from the audience. Question period of 4 minutes must be completed. Audience members who are connected with a participant (e.g. a family member, teacher or an accompanying guest) may not ask questions to that participant. After 4 minutes the Chairman of the round/heat signals the end of the question round.

The timing of a heat and the Final is therefore as follows:

  • Introduction of speaker      0.30 minutes (this is not included in the timing)
  • Speech                                4.30 – 5.30 minutes
  • Questions and answers       4 minutes
  • Total                                    8.30 – 9.30 minutes

At the semi-final the winners of their heats will deliver a 3-min speech(a margin of 30 seconds either way) with 15-min preparation time before that. Marks will be deducted for speeches which vary from this limit. After 2.30 minutes a signal is given that the speech must be finished within 1 minute. After 3 minutes another audible signal indicates that 30 seconds remains to end the speech. After 3.30 minutes the last audible signal indicates the end of the speaking time (at which point the participant must conclude their speech immediately). No Question&Answer session will follow the speech in this round.

The timing of the semi-final is therefore as follows:

  • Introduction of speaker      0.30 minutes (this is not included in the timing)
  • Speech                                2.30 – 3.30 minutes
  • Total                                   4.00 – 4.30 minutes

4. General
The order in which the speakers compete will be determined by drawing by the organizer. The speaker’s presentation should be purely oral without use of any other devices. The discreet use of notes, however, is permitted.

5. Judging
Two judges per a heat and five at the Final will allocate points on the following basis:

  • Reasoning&Evidence – max 35
  • Expression&Delivery – max 35
  • Organisation&Prioritisation – max 15
  • Listening&Response – max 15
  • Total number of points – maximum 100

Three judges in the semi-final will allocate points on the following basis:

  •  Expression&Delivery – max 40
  •  Reasoning&Analysis – max 40
  •  Organisation&Prioritisation – max 20
  •  Total number of points – max 100

The judges’ decision is final. No correspondence will be entered into.

6. Prizes
The winner of the National Final will be awarded a trip to London, where he/she will compete in the English-Speaking Union (ESU) International Speaking Competition Final 2014, as  the representative of Estonia.  All the programme fees are covered by the ESU (a five-day stay in London at a B&B hotel, workshops, excursions, meal, entertainment, travel expenses within London). Please note that the topic for the ESU International Final 2014 in London is different to that of the National Competition: “Imagination is More Important than Knowledge”.

Some other prizes are provided by the US Embassy Tallinn, British Embassy, Tallinn City Government, British Council, OUP in the Baltics.

7. Date
The ESU Estonia National Public Speaking Competition 2014 will be held  on March 1 at the Tallinn English College, Estonia pst 10, at 12.00.

11.30 -12.00      Registration
12.00 – 12.15     Welcome
12.30 – 13.45     Heats
13.45 – 14.45     Break
14.45 – 15.45     Semi-final
15.45 – 16.00     Break
16.00 – 17.00     Final
17.00 – 17.30     Award ceremony

8. Registration
Participating schools can register up to two applicants by completing the form online at https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1b_1tE1Z67q3gYlBOtWZSqmOot37aE4nX2_TkcIGYQHE/edit
Register each individual candidate and complete each pupil’s entry (topic, title of the speech, etc)  NO LATER THAN  February 15th, 2014.

For more information and the Handbook contact Zinaida Jevgrafova, Convenor of the NPSC at zinaiday.jevgrafova08@gmail.com.

3 responses to “NPSC 2014

  1. Pingback: February 20 Event Canceled | English-Speaking Union of Estonia

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  3. Pingback: Vikki Perijainen Wins NPSC 2014 | English-Speaking Union of Estonia

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