The purpose of the Parliamentary Procedure Career Development Event is to encourage students to learn to effectively participate in a business meeting and to assist in the development of their leadership, research and problem solving skills.
Students will be able to:
- Use parliamentary procedure to conduct an orderly and efficient meeting.
- Demonstrate knowledge of parliamentary law.
- Present a logical, realistic and convincing debate on motions.
- Record complete and accurate minutes.
- Utilize parliamentary resources to solve problems of organizational management and operations.
- Team make-up: A team representing a state will consist of six members from the same chapter.
- The event will have four phases: written examinations, a ten minute team presentation of parliamentary procedure, oral questions following the presentation and minutes and/or a problem solving activity. Minutes will be prepared by the team secretary in consultation with the team chair. The problem solving activity will involve all six team members.
- The advisor will not consult with the team after beginning the event.
- Any participant in possession of an electronic device in the event area is subject to disqualification.
- Materials the student needs to provide: Each participant must bring a minimum of two sharpened No. 2 pencils.
- Materials provided by the event committee: A copy of the current edition of Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised. A gavel will be supplied for the Chair. Teams may choose to use their own gavel if they so desire. Paper and pencils will be provided to Chair and Secretary. A dictionary will be provided in the minutes room.
- Written Test150 points
- Fifty (50) multiple choice questions taken from the Eight Standard Characteristics taken from Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised. References cannot be used for this part. Participants will have one hour to complete the exam.
- The average score of the six team members will be used to compute the total team score in each round.
- Presentation620 points
- Round The state event will have two rounds: a preliminary round, and a final round. The preliminary round will have two sections. A section shall be made up of five to eight teams. Two teams from each of the sections, for a total of four teams, will advance to the final round.
- Seeding Process Teams will be placed into preliminary round based on the teams’ exam scores.
- Item of Business Each team will address a local chapter item of business, which would normally be a part of a chapter’s Program of Activities (e.g., Food for America, Project PALS, fundraisers, recreation, etc.). Consult the Official FFA Manual and Student Handbook for specific activities. The motion will be specific and must be moved as an original main motion as it is written on the card.
- Event Card The event officials will select two subsidiary, two incidental and one privileged or a motion that brings a question again before the assembly from the list of permissible motions. These motions will be on an index card
- Opening the Demonstration The team demonstrating shall assume that a regular chapter meeting is in progress and new business is being handled on the agenda. The Chair shall tap the gavel once to signify the end of the previous item of business then start the presentation by saying, “Is there any new business that should be presented at this time?”
- Original Main Motion The event official will assign the main motion on an index card. This is to be the first item of business presented. All teams in each section will use the same main motion. This original main motion must be the first motion presented unless orders of the day, take from the table, reconsider or rescind are required.
- Individual Member Recognition A member may speak in debate on the main motion and conclude by offering a secondary motion. While it is discouraged, judges will award points accordingly for both the debate and the secondary motion.
- Take from the Table If the officials in charge designate Take from the Table as a motion to be demonstrated, you will be provided the motion to take from the table. Example: “I move to take from the table the motion that our chapter sells Christmas trees.” The original main motion, assigned on the card, cannot be taken from the table. The motion shall not be used un- less it is a required motion.
- Reconsider If the officials in charge designate Reconsider as a motion to be demonstrated, you will be provided the motion to reconsider. Example: "I move to reconsider the motion passed earlier to sell Christmas trees." This motion shall not be used unless it is a required motion. Unrealistic or "canned" debate on the motion to reconsider may be penalized at the judge's discretion
- Rescind If the officials in charge designate Rescind as a motion to be demonstrated, you will be provided the motion to rescind. Example: “I move to rescind the motion that was adopted at our last meeting to sell Christmas trees.” This motion shall not be used unless it is a required motion. Unrealistic or “canned” debate on rescind may be penalized at the judge’s discretion.
- Call for the Orders of the Day If the event officials designate Call for the Orders of the Day as a motion to be demonstrated, you are to assume that a motion was postponed at the last meeting and made a special order for a time during the current demonstration.
- Number of Motions There shall be no limitation to the number of subsidiary, incidental, privileged motions or a motion that brings a question again before the assembly demonstrated by the team. However, the team must demonstrate two subsidiary, two incidental and one privileged or a motion which brings a question again before the assembly designated by the officials in charge. The team may use more than one original main motion as long as it pertains to the assigned main motion. While acceptable, this practice is strongly discouraged.
- Using a Motion Twice A member’s required motion will not be counted as an additional motion for another member. The person who makes the assigned main motion will be given credit for an additional motion (10 points). If an alternate main motion is used, the member will NOT be given credit for an additional motion. No motion may count for an additional motion for more than one member.
- Debate The top four debates per member will be tabulated in the presentation score. No more than two debates per member per motion will be tabulated, even if the subsidiary motion to Extend the Limits of Debate has been passed.
- Time Limit and Deductions A team shall be allowed ten minutes and thirty seconds in which to demonstrate knowledge of parliamentary law. A deduction of two points/second for every second over 10:30 will be assessed. Example: 10:35 =10 point deduction. A timekeeper will furnish the time used by each team at the close of the event.
- Oral Questions135 points
- Individual Questions—90 points—(6 x 15 points) The team members (not including the Chair) will be asked a planned question, which may include 1-3 parts, relating to their assigned motion. No one may step forward to help another member answer their individual question. The Chair will be asked a question relating to presiding, debate, assigning the floor or other general parliamentary procedures.
- General Questions45 points The judges will have four minutes to ask questions related to the team’s demonstration. Questions may be directed to the team or an individual member. Team members may volunteer to answer the question for the team or to help another member.
- Presentation of Minutes45 points
Each team in the preliminary round will have a Secretary take minutes of the presentation. A possible score of 50 points will be allowed for the minutes. Pencil and paper will be supplied to take notes during the presentation. If paper and pencil are not present, it is the Secretary’s responsibility to request these items from the judges or event officials. Following the presentation the Secretary, in consultation with the Chair, will have 20 minutes to prepare the official minutes. Notes taken by the Secretary during the presentation must be turned in with the official copy of the minutes on Form 1. (The lowest possible score for the section is zero (0).) Event officials shall use Form 3 to score the official minutes of the presentation.
Instructions on Minutes
- Use the example of proper minutes as illustrated in Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised.
- A dictionary will be provided for writing the official minutes of the presentation.
- The minutes will begin by recording the first item of business presented. Example: “It was moved by John Smith to conduct a Food for America program during the month of April.”
- The Chair and the Secretary may consult in preparing the official minutes of the presentation. A total of 20 minutes will be allowed to prepare the minutes.
- A judge will read, review and grade the official minutes of the presentation after completion of the preliminary round of the event. The scores will be provided to the presentation judges for use in computing final scores.
- Team Problem Solving Activity45 points
- Teams advancing to the final round will complete a team problem solving activity in lieu of the minutes. Teams will be provided a short parliamentary procedure scenario out- lining a practical problem. The team will have 30 minutes to research the problem and write a short solution with reference to specific page and line numbers in Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised. All team members are required to provide their own copy of the most current edition of Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised.
- Guidelines for Scoring Discussion
- It is essential that each judge observes and maintains consistent criteria in scoring debate for the duration of the event.
- Judges must overlook personal opinions and beliefs and score debate in an unbiased manner. All debate should be scored at the time it is delivered.
- Characteristics of effective debate include a) completeness of thought, b) logical reasoning, c) clear statement of speaker’s position, d) conviction of delivery, e) concise and effective statement of debate.
A suggested grading scale is as follows:
- An excellent debate would be characterized by a truly stirring delivery and brilliant in terms of information provided and/or suggestions for action offered. Poor debate would be characterized by a lack of effective delivery, poor grammar, reasoning and substance. An example might be: “I think this is a good idea."
- Most debate would fall in the range of 6-12 points. An example of a debate might be: “I think this is a very significant motion which should be adopted for the following reasons (new, informative and logically related).” Each debate should have a logical conclusion. Good debate would be characterized by effective delivery, substance, creative and vi- sionary thought delivered in a convincing and compelling manner.
- Each time a participant in the presentation discusses any motion, they may earn a score. However, an individual may never earn more than 50 points in a given presentation. The top four debates per member will be tabulated in the presentation score. No more than two debates per member per motion will be tabulated.
- Guidelines for Scoring the Chair
Ability to preside: state motions correctly, follow rules of debate, keep members in- formed, put motions to a vote, announce results of vote, use of gavel, awareness of business on the floor. (80 points)
Suggested grading scale is as follows:
Leadership - stage presence, poise, self-confidence, politeness and voice. (20 points)
A suggested grading scale is as follows:
- Guidelines for Scoring Team Effect
- Conclusions reached by the team - Main motion was well analyzed which may include: Who, What, When, Where, How. (40 points)
- Team Use of Debate - degree to which debate was convincing, logical, realistic, orderly and efficient, germane and free from repetition. (40 points)
- Team Presence - voice, poise, expression, grammar, gestures and professionalism. (40 points)
- Overall Scoring
Component Points 1 Written Exam (15%) 150 50 multiple-choice questions x 3 pts. each = 150 2 Presentation (67%) 670 Required motion = 20 pts. x 5 members = 100 pts. (10%) Additional motion = 10 pts. x 5 members = 50 pts. (5%) Debates = 300 pts. (30%)
- 15 pts max per debate
- 4 debates/member included
- 5 members
Chair = 100 pts. (10%)
- Ability to Preside = 80 pts.
- Leadership = 20 pts.
Team Effect = 120 pts (12%)
- Conclusions Reached by Team = 40 pts.
- Team Use of Debate = 40 pts.
- Team Presence = 40 pts.
3 Oral Questions (13.5%) 135 Individual Questions = 90 pts.
- 6 team members (including Chair)
- 15 pts. max per question
General Questions = 45 pts.
- 4 minutes allotted
- 15 pts allotted per judge (15 x 3 = 45 pts.)
4 Minutes or Team Problem Solving (4.5%) 45 Meeting Minutes (Preliminary Round) = 45 pts. Team Problem Solving (Final Round) = 45 pts. Total Points 1000
Tiebreakers for teams will be:
- Total presentation score.
- Team average score on the written test.
- Total score for questions.
The first through fourth place state teams will be presented a trophy plaque.
This list of references is not intended to be all-inclusive. Other sources may be utilized and teachers are encouraged to make use of the very best instructional materials available. The following list contains references that may prove helpful during event preparation.
National FFA Core Catalog Link
- CDE Q&A's:
- Additional parliamentary procedure resources, including those formally offered in the National FFA Education Resources Catalog can now be found on-line
- The official text will be the most current of Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised.
- Additional references may include FFA New Horizons magazine, the Official FFA Manual and the FFA Student Handbook.