To explicate our justification for the value of competitive speech activities, we contend that participation in forensics develops critical emotional competencies in students. The narratives used in this study were part of the NSDA’s efforts to create materials that would introduce various individual events to beginning competitors. In 2016, through its Instagram account, the NSDA asked high school competitors to comment on a post about why they chose to compete in their individual events. The NSDA identified the best 12 responses and then interviewed those students. ping and performing pieces in individual events. After examining how signs of emotional competence appear in the sample interviews, the remainder of the essay outlines some of the ways that this connection between emotional competency and forensics training could be used to justify forensics competition.



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