the JOTTER Tuesday September 4th 2018

Jotter 953

Attendance 25-30.  7 guests including 5 from other clubs.


On Tuesday Sep4 we had a training session called ‘Speech Contests: Unpacking the Judging Criteria’, delivered by Alison Cleaver of the Lismore club.

Every year knock out competitions are held in 5 categories of public speaking: International, Humorous, Evaluation, Table Topics and Tall Tales. Winners progress from Club contests, through Area, Division and District contests, to arrive ultimately at the Toastmasters International Conference. There are strict rules, including of course for judging which aims to rank contestants according to set criteria.

On Tuesday we began with a close examination of the judging criteria for International, Table Topics and Evaluation. Then came a mock Evaluation contest with everyone in the audience being a judge.


Ernie as Test Speaker gave a speech which was intended to be full of egregious errors and ‘points for improvement’.

The 4 contestants then gave their evaluations, with 3 failing to meet all the judging criteria, leaving one as the standout winner.

DavidW’s evaluation was a whitewash, glossing over weaknesses.

Pauline’s evaluation was far too severe, not recognising strengths.

Fran’s evaluation was good but lacked a summation.

Barbara was Goldilocks as her evaluation was ‘just right!’, and the clear winner.

Scoring was by show of hands. I believe Fran got the highest score which wasn’t supposed to happen. However if everything had gone absolutely perfectly that might suggest we didn’t need the training at all.


The session was useful for people who will be judges, for those wanting to contest, and for people generally who want to be better at public speaking.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Next meeting Tuesday 18th September…Humorous Club Contest.