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National Speech and Debate Tournament Logo Tournament Registration

The tabs listed here correspond to the tabs found on your school’s National Tournament registration in Visit your registration and follow along with the information in these tabs for instructions on completing registration.

    • March 15: This is the earliest a school can begin registration. When registration opens for your district, coaches with qualifiers will receive an email alerting them that online registration for Nationals is open for their school. Coaches may only register after their entire district tournament series has been completed and their district chair has finalized results.
    • May 1: Late elimination round judge nominations are due. Nominate your qualified judges in or encourage your judges to self-nominate to judge late elimination rounds at Nationals using these instructions.
    • May 15: All National Tournament registration materials and payments are due. This includes payment, initial script uploads, the final list of judges you will bring to the tournament and the number of days they will judge, judge paradigms, certification judges have completed the required training and demographics form, and entry details.  Coaches must enter points and service citations by this date in order to receive recognition of diamonds and service citations at this year’s National Tournament.
    • May 22: Refund deadline. Changes to your entry made between May 15-22 are eligible to receive a 50% refund. No refunds for entry changes will be made after May 22. 
    • June 1: Alternates registration is due. After June 1, alternates are no longer brought up if a qualifier denies their spot.
    • June 15: Final script uploads are due on
Payment Methods
    • Payment is due May 15. Follow these instructions to create your National Tournament invoice. There are three ways to pay:
      • Checks payable to National Speech & Debate Association. Mail payment to: NSDA, 6600 Westown Pkwy Ste 270 West Des Moines, IA 50266. Checks must be postmarked by May 15.
      • Purchase order uploaded in PDF format to the Money tab of your school’s registration by May 15.
      • Online via credit card or ACH payment via the school’s NSDA account. There is no processing fee for credit card and ACH payments.
Judge Bond
    • Each school must post a judge bond of $200. This bond is in addition to entry fees and judge fees. If all judges from a school complete all judging assignments, the $200 will be returned after the tournament using the method selected during registration (on the general tab of your Tournament registration): refund check by mail or credit to your NSDA membership account. To use the credit for your school membership, you must generate an invoice as usual in the fall and apply the credit to activate your membership. 
    • Failure to report for each round on a day you’re obligated will forfeit your judge bond of $200 for the first round missed, and a $100 per judge per round penalty will be assessed thereafter. A school will not be permitted to compete the following year unless all outstanding fees have been paid.  
Entry Fees
    • Entry fees are $140 per student. Partner events are $280.
    • Each supplemental event has a $30 fee per pre-registered entry. Pre-registration fees are non-refundable even if students do not end up competing in that event. Students can be pre-registered for all supplemental events, but re-registration is limited to one speech event per pattern or Extemp Debate.
    • Schools staying within the NSDA hotel block receive a 15% discount on all main event and supplemental event entry fees. Schools must select the hotel they are staying at and enter at least one confirmation code from their hotel booking in their registration, and this discount will be automatically applied.
    • Full refunds will be issued for changes made by May 15th at 11:59 p.m. CT. 50% refunds will be issued for changes made between May 16 – May 22. No refunds will be made after May 22.
    • If you make changes to your registration before May 15 but have already created an invoice that is higher than that amount, contact the national office for the invoice to be revised.
    • A supplemental event entry must be dropped by May 15 to be refunded. The entry fee will not be refunded after May 15, even if the entry does not participate in the supplemental event.
    • Overpayments will be processed by July 31 and refunded via the same method selected for judge bond refund.
    • Judge bond refunds will be processed by July 31. 
The Road to Nationals Fund

The Road to Nationals Fund was created to help schools that lack financial resources attend the high school National Speech & Debate Tournament. The NSDA is proud to provide over $100,000 in travel grants to schools through this fund.

Learn more about the Road to Nationals Fund.

Lodging Opportunity

In 2024, the NSDA is proud to partner with Simpson College to offer the Stay-at-Simpson program to provide free lodging for 80 students and their coaches.

Learn more about Stay-at-Simpson.

Sunday Registration

For high school teams beginning competition on Monday, registration will run from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at the Iowa Events Center on Sunday, June 16. An adult from each team should stop by to pick up your materials and ask any questions! Late registration will run from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. for schools arriving in the evening. Additional events for coaches, like the district leader reception or the new coach reception, take place throughout the day. A full schedule will be released in the coming months. We recommend teams drive to the various schools before competition begins to become familiar with the daily route and expected travel times.

Group of students posing at the National Tournament with a backdrop