Member Login


Douglas Wine - Holy Ghost Catholic School, New Mexico

Why Become a Member?


As the national authority on public speaking and debate, we provide the infrastructure for speech and debate competitions around the world. We create a platform for youth voices to be heard and celebrated, which culminates with an annual National Tournament, the pinnacle of Public Speaking.

Your Students

With access to NSDA membership, your students will:


    • Develop the communication skills employers value
    • Be eligible to earn a portion of the $150K in college scholarships we give annually
    • Learn to analyze problems, discuss and debate them civilly, and work together to create solutions
    • Earn local, state, and national recognition for achievement
    • Build their skills with access to helpful training tools
    • Compete to attend the National Tournament, the pinnacle of public speaking, where 54 national champions are crowned.

Your School or District

Administrators report the following impacts from NSDA membership:


    • Improved classroom performance
    • Higher student confidence and self esteem
    • Increased attendance rates
    • Decreased negative student behavior
    • Increased school pride
    • Increased engagement in the classroom
    • Higher test scores
    • New recognition opportunities

The Benefits of Speech and Debate


Speech and debate changes lives. From building confidence, improving communication, and increasing critical thinking skills to better preparing students for college, speech and debate activities provide life skills vital to a young person’s success in the future.

Debaters and Life After Graduation Chart that illustrates 15% are top ranking corporate executives. 30% are university educators. 10% work in the government. 90% have one graduate degree
Debate and Academic Performance chart that illustrates there is a 36% increase in reading test scores. 31% increase in regular attendance. 15% higher self-esteem. 100% increased interest in their classes. 87% increase in analytical skills...

Administrator Testimonials

[Speech and debate] helps students come to terms with their identity and teaches empathy. At an age when bullying is so common, speech and debate celebrates kids who often fall through the cracks in more traditional settings. Specifically, girls are encouraged to be smart and argumentative as much as boys, in whom strong emotional awareness and expressiveness are celebrated.
Robyn Kaiyal

Associate Headmaster for Academic Affairs, NSU University School Florida

Speech and debate participants do better academically across the board. They become engaged, active participants in their education and in their community. Our school has seen great improvements in student culture and spirit since we started our program, and I would highly recommend joining the NSDA to any administrator looking to make a positive impact on school culture and academic performance.
Errol A. Evans

2018 NSDA Middle School Administrator of the Year

How to Start a Team

We can help you advocate for a program and find the right coach! With our help, anyone can coach speech and debate. Contact us to get your program started. District-level personnel representing more than one school should inquire about bulk membership options

We wanted to create more opportunities for our students. What we ended up doing was impacting our school culture in a variety of positive ways … Those benefits include scholarship dollars for your students, opportunities to give students a place to belong and “plug in,” not to mention the possibility of outstanding recognition for your school and community.

Austin Brown

2017 National Speech & Debate Association Principal of the Year Principal, Madison Central High School, Mississippi