General Guidelines

Introduction
 
Initiated in 2002 by Foreign Language Teaching and Research Press (FLTRP), the “FLTRP Cup” English Public Speaking Contest has gained great attention and credit both at home and abroad. Over the years it has been regarded as the most prestigious English public speaking competition with the highest standards in China, attracting the largest number of participants from across the whole country. All the participants eagerly embraced the opportunity to challenge themselves, to improve themselves, and to be themselves. The contest has been of great help to all participants in improving their English proficiency, and in cultivating their communication and critical thinking skills. 
 
The 2017 “FLTRP Cup” English Public Speaking Contest consists of an offline contest and an online contest, and ultimately the two will be combined in the National Final. 
 
The offline contest is composed of three parts: the Preliminary, the Provincial Final, and the National Final. The procedure is as follows: the Preliminaries will be held by colleges and universities in each province; the winners will compete in the Provincial Finals organized by the provincial organizing committees and co-organized by the local branches of FLTRP; the top 3 contestants from each province (altogether 90 nationwide) will attend the National Final. 
 
The online contest will be held on the official website (http://uchallenge.en.unipus.cn) where applicants can sign up to participate. Participants from overseas and those from Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan will be invited to attend the National Final competing for the final Grand Prizes and other special prizes.
 
 
 
Contestants
 
The offline contest: The offline contest is only open to full-time college students, undergraduates and postgraduates under the age of 35 and of Chinese nationality.
 
The online contest: The online contest is open to full-time college students, undergraduates and postgraduates under the age of 35, including international students studying in China. 
 
 
Organization
 
Host:
Foreign Language Teaching and Research Press (FLTRP)
 
Co-organizers:
National Foreign Languages Teaching Advisory Board under the Ministry of Education
National Advisory Board on Teaching English Language to Majors in Higher Education under the Ministry of Education
National Research Centre for Foreign Language Education
 
Organizers:
Beijing Waiyan Online Education Technology Co., Ltd
China Language Assessment
 
 
Key Events
 
May 18th, 2017: The organizers launch the preparatory meeting for the 2017 Uchallenge Contests, discussing the contest guidelines and determining the topic of the prepared speech for 2017.
 
May 25th - October 22nd, 2017: Registration for the “FLTRP Cup” English Public Speaking Online Contest is open and contestants can submit their video of the prepared speech on the official website.
 
November 24th, 2017: The results of the online contest will be announced.
 
December 4th-8th, 2017: The National Final
 
December 9th-10th, 2017: The Sixth National Symposium on English Public Speaking and Writing
 
“FLTRP Cup”English Public Speaking Contest
Secretariat of the Organizing Committee
June,2017

 

2017"FLTRP-Cup"

General Guidelines

Introduction
 
Initiated in 2002 by Foreign Language Teaching and Research Press (FLTRP), the “FLTRP Cup” English Public Speaking Contest has gained great attention and credit both at home and abroad. Over the years it has been regarded as the most prestigious English public speaking competition with the highest standards in China, attracting the largest number of participants from across the whole country. All the participants eagerly embraced the opportunity to challenge themselves, to improve themselves, and to be themselves. The contest has been of great help to all participants in improving their English proficiency, and in cultivating their communication and critical thinking skills. 
 
The 2017 “FLTRP Cup” English Public Speaking Contest consists of an offline contest and an online contest, and ultimately the two will be combined in the National Final. 
 
The offline contest is composed of three parts: the Preliminary, the Provincial Final, and the National Final. The procedure is as follows: the Preliminaries will be held by colleges and universities in each province; the winners will compete in the Provincial Finals organized by the provincial organizing committees and co-organized by the local branches of FLTRP; the top 3 contestants from each province (altogether 90 nationwide) will attend the National Final. 
 
The online contest will be held on the official website (http://uchallenge.en.unipus.cn) where applicants can sign up to participate. Participants from overseas and those from Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan will be invited to attend the National Final competing for the final Grand Prizes and other special prizes.
 
 
 
Contestants
 
The offline contest: The offline contest is only open to full-time college students, undergraduates and postgraduates under the age of 35 and of Chinese nationality.
 
The online contest: The online contest is open to full-time college students, undergraduates and postgraduates under the age of 35, including international students studying in China. 
 
 
Organization
 
Host:
Foreign Language Teaching and Research Press (FLTRP)
 
Co-organizers:
National Foreign Languages Teaching Advisory Board under the Ministry of Education
National Advisory Board on Teaching English Language to Majors in Higher Education under the Ministry of Education
National Research Centre for Foreign Language Education
 
Organizers:
Beijing Waiyan Online Education Technology Co., Ltd
China Language Assessment
 
The Online Contest
 
Registration:
All participants must use an email address to register on the official website between May 25th and October 22nd, 2017. The email address used for registration must be noted by all participants as it will be the key for logging into the official website for the contest. Participants must ensure that all their registration information is true and accurate otherwise they will be disqualified.  
 
The decisions of the Organizing Committee are final and no participant has a right of appeal.
 
Terms of Participation:
Participants in the online contest must submit a video. Specific requirements are as follows: 
1. Content: A video of a 3-minute prepared speech in English on the topic released by the Organizing Committee (please watch the video for the topic on the official website: http://uchallenge.en.unipus.cn). The video submitted must have a speech title. 
2.  Video quality: The frames and sounds of the video submitted must be clear with no background noises, and must not have been processed by any editing tools. 
3.  Format: Most video file formats are supported (see the detailed requirements on the official website). 
4.  Size: The size of the file must be between 50M and 500M. 
5.  The video cannot be uploaded via mobile devices; please submit your video via computer. 
6.  Submission date: from May 25th to October 22nd. 
 
Phases of the Online Contest:
1. The preliminary of the online contest: From October 23rd to November 6th, the online contest judging panel organized by the Organizing Committee will review all the submitted videos and select 300 videos for the next round of the online contest. The shortlist of the 300 contestants will be publicized on the official website. 
2. The semi-final of the online contest: From November 7th to 13th, the online contest judging panel organized by the Organizing Committee will assess and select 150 videos from the 300 videos. The shortlist of the 150 contestants will be publicized on the official website. 
3. The final of the online contest: From November 14th to 20th, the judges will video call and ask questions to the 150 contestants based on their submitted videos and grade their performances. From November 17th to 23rd, all registered users of Unipus can visit the official website to vote for their favorite videos. 
The top 3 contestants who receive the most votes will go straight to the National Final, along with the other top 87 contestants ranked by scores (taking their video scores, Q & A performances, and votes into account). 
4. Publishing the online contest results: On November 24th, the Organizing Committee will publicize the results of the online contest for 2 days on the official website, and then formally announce the list of the 90 contestants going to the National Final. 
Please note: Any contestants found violating the contest requirements will be disqualified. 
 
Awards to Online Contestants:
Grand Prize: to the 90 contestants advancing to the National Final in Beijing. These contestants will have an opportunity to sit for one test of the English Test for International Communication (ETIC) without charge before May 30th, 2018 (see more details on http: //etic.claon-line.cn). 
First Prize: to the 60 contestants who advance to the final of the online contest but do not advance to the National Final. 
Second Prize: to the 150 contestants who advance to the semi-final of the online contest but do not advance to the final of the online contest.
 
All prize winners can check and download their certificate from the official website (http://uchallenge.en.unipus.cn). 
 
Judging Panel:
1.  The preliminary of the online contest: The judging panel will consist of no less than 5 judges (at least 1 foreign judge), among whom the Chinese judges must possess the title of lecturer or above. 
2.  The semi-final of the online contest: The judging panel will consist of no less than 5 judges (at least 1 foreign judge), among whom the Chinese judges must possess the title of associate professor or above. 
3.  The final of the online contest: The judging panel will consist of no less than 5 judges (at least 1 foreign judge), among whom the Chinese judges must possess the title of professor. 
All members of the judging panels must sign a Letter of Commitment to Integrity and will be disqualified if found abusing his/her power. 
4.  Scoring Criteria: The principles of justice and fairness must be reflected in the scoring criteria as set for the National Final. 
 
The National Final
 
Eligibility: Contestants for the National Final include the top 3 finalists from each province (altogether 90 nationwide) from the offline contest, the top 90 contestants from the online contest, and the contestants invited from overseas, Hong Kong, Macao, and Taiwan. 
Location: Beijing
Date: December 4th to 8th, 2017
Determine the Order: The contestants will draw lots to determine the order of participation in each phase of the National Final. The order cannot be changed after drawing lots and participants cannot swap their positions. 
Judging Panel: The judging panels for Phase 1 and Phase 2 must consist of no less than 5 judges (at least 1 foreign judge), and the judging panels for Phase 3 and Phase 4 must consist of no less than 9 judges (at least 3 foreign judges). The Chinese judges in all phases must possess the title of professor. A judging panel meeting must be held before each phase of contest to discuss and determine the scoring criteria in order to ensure the validity and fairness of the contest. 
The contest consists of four phases.
 
Phase 1
 
The contestants for the National Final will be divided into 3 groups by drawing lots and compete within each group simultaneously. The order of participation in each group will be determined by drawing lots. 
Date: December 4th, 2017
Procedure:
1. Prepared Speech: Each contestant is required to deliver a 3-minute prepared speech on the topic released by the Organizing Committee (the topic can be found on the official website). 
2. Response to Questions: The speech is immediately followed by questions raised by the judges. The judges are allowed to ask 2 questions about the speech and the contestant has 1 minute to respond to each question. 
The top 30 contestants from each group will advance to the second phase of the contest. 
Scoring:
1.  The scores for Phase 1 will be calculated by using a trimmed mean (the highest and lowest scores will be discarded and the remaining scores will be averaged). 
2.  The first 5 contestants in each group will be scored together after a discussion by the judging panel; the scores of other contestants will be released immediately after the Response to Questions session. 
Scoring Criteria (100 points)

Prepared Speech (60%)

Response to Questions (40%)

Content

30%

Content

20%

Language

20%

Language

10%

Delivery

10%

Delivery

10%

 

Phase 2

The 90 qualified contestants advancing to Phase 2 will be divided into 3 groups by drawing lots and will compete within each group simultaneously. The order of participation in each group will be determined by drawing lots. The scores attained in Phase 1 will not be taken into consideration in Phase 2.
Date: December 5th, 2017
Procedure:
1. Impromptu speech: The contestants will select a topic for their speech by randomly drawing from a pool of topics and will have 20 minutes for preparation. They then deliver a 3-minute speech. All topics will be kept confidential before use. 
2. Response to questions: The impromptu speech is immediately followed by questions raised by the judges. The judges will ask 2 questions about the speech and the contestant has 1 minute to respond to each question.
3. Quizzes: Each contestant will answer 4 general knowledge questions and will have only 5 seconds to respond to each question. The total point is 1 (0.25 point for each question), which will be included in the final score for Phase 2. The questions will be varied, including common knowledge, knowledge of language, history, culture, and current affairs. The questions will be kept confidential before use.
The top 7 contestants from each group will enter Phase 3 of the contest.
Scoring:
1. The scores for Phase 2 will be calculated by using a trimmed mean (the highest and lowest scores will be discarded and the remaining scores will be averaged).
2. The first 5 contestants in each group will be scored together after a discussion by the judging panel and their scores will then be released; the scores of other contestants will be released immediately after the Response to Questions session.
Scoring Criteria (101 points)

Impromptu Speech (60%)

Response to Questions (40%)

Quizzes

Content

30%

Content

20%

1 point

Language

20%

Language

10%

Delivery

10%

Delivery

10%

 
 
Phase 3
 
The 21 contestants in Phase 3 will be divided into 7 groups. The top 2 contestants in each group from Phase 2 (a total of 6) will be assigned to 6 different groups. The other 15 contestants will be randomly distributed to 7 groups by drawing lots. The contestants in each group will use the same speech topic and the order in which the speeches are given will be determined by drawing lots. The scores for Phase 2 will not be taken into consideration in Phase 3.
Date: December 7th, 2017
Procedure:
1. Assigned speech: The speech topics will be kept confidential and the 21 contestants will choose a topic one day before the contest by drawing lots. The contestants will each deliver a 2-minute assigned speech according to the order determined by drawing lots.
2. Response to question: After all 3 contestants of each group finish their speeches, the judges will ask the contestants questions according to the order in which the speeches were given. Each contestant will be asked 1 question and will have 1 minute to respond to the question.
3. Extension speech: The 3 contestants of each group will each make a 1-minute extension speech and these speeches will be given in reverse order.
4. Group quizzes: The 3 contestants in each group will compete against each other to answer a group of questions (5 questions). The contestants will receive 0.2 point for each correct answer and 0.1 point will be deducted for every incorrect answer.
The contestant with the highest score from each group (a total of 7 people) will go through to Phase 4 of the contest. All members of the Organizing Committee will be asked to vote and choose 1 contestant out of the remaining 14 for Phase 4.
Scoring: The scores for Phase 3 will be calculated by using a trimmed mean (the highest and lowest scores will be discarded and the remaining scores will be averaged).
Scoring Criteria (101 points)
  Assigned Speech(60%) Response to Question (20%) Extension Speech(20%) Group Quizzes
Content 30% 10% 10% 1 point
Language 20% 5% 5%
Delivery 10% 5% 5%

 

Phase 4
 
8 contestants in the final phase will compete for the championship, the runner-up and second runner-up places. 
The scores for Phase 3 will not be taken into consideration in Phase 4. 
The contest procedure is yet to be decided and will be announced by the Organizing Committee.
Date: December 8th, 2017
 
NOTES
1. Any changes regarding the contest rules are subject to final announcement by the Organizing Committee.
2. Drawing lots: The contestants will draw their contestant number before the National Final but an agent can be appointed to draw the number if a contestant cannot be present in person. In this case, a letter of authorization with the contestant’s signature must be delivered to the Organizing Committee for reference. If the contestant fails to appoint an agent before drawing lots, s/he will be deemed to have abstained from participation. 
Contestants must draw lots for the order in which the speeches are given by themselves, and an agent is not accepted. If a contestant fails to take the draw, s/he will be deemed to have abstained from participation and the position will be filled by the contestant with the highest score among the remaining 13 in Phase 3.
3. Tiebreak: There will be a tiebreak if the last two or several contestants tie for the next phase in Phase 1 and Phase 2 of the National Final. The competition order during a tiebreak will be decided by drawing lots. Each contestant will draw a topic randomly and have 10 minutes to prepare for a 2-minute impromptu speech. Results will be announced immediately after the speeches and the contestant with the highest score will go to the next phase. If there is a tie in Phase 3 or Phase 4, the judging panel will discuss and decide which contestant should step into the next phase.
4. The Award Ceremony: All contestants at the National Final are required to attend the final phase and the Award Ceremony.
5. Certificates and awards: Certificates and awards for the National Final will be issued at the Award Ceremony and will not be re-issued if the contestants fail to attend the ceremony. The certificates for the online contest can be downloaded from the official website.
6. All participants are responsible for their own travel and accommodation expenses. (The Organizing Committee will make arrangements for accommodation.)
 
Awards

Contestants’ Awards

Grand Prize: to the top 8 contestants advancing to Phase 4 of the National Final, including 1 champion, 2 runners-up, and 5 second runners-up. 
    Champion
    The Champion will receive a trophy, a certificate, and the opportunity to attend an exchange program at George Mason University in July 2018. 
    Runner-up
    The Runners-up will each receive a certificate, and the opportunity to attend an exchange program at George Mason University in July 2018. 
    Second Runner-up
    The Second Runners-up will each receive a certificate and the opportunity of training and competing at the Asian Debate Institute in August 2018. 
First Prize: to the top 13 contestants advancing to Phase 3 of the National Final but failing to reach Phase 4. 
First Prize winners will each receive a certificate and an opportunity to go abroad or to Hong Kong and Macao on an exchange visit. 
Second Prize: to the 69 contestants advancing to Phase 2 of the National Final but failing to reach Phase 3. 
Second Prize winners will each receive a certificate and an award.
Third Prize: to the contestants advancing to Phase 1 of the National Final but failing to reach Phase 2. 
Third Prize winners will each receive a certificate and an award. 
Special Awards: These awards will be granted to the individuals for their special accomplishments. 
The winners will each receive a certificate and an award.
Unipus Scholarship: Winners of the National Final will each receive a 1,000 RMB gift card for use on the online Ucourse courses (http://ucourse.unipus.cn). 
The FLTRP Special Fund for Study Tours: Winners of the National Final will each receive 5,000 RMB from The FLTRP Special Fund for Study Tours, for use when registering for the 2018 FLTRP college-student summer camp in the UK.
 
 
Instructors’ Awards
 
Grand Prize to Instructors: to the instructors of the 8 Grand Prize winners. 
    Champion’s Instructor
    The Champion’s Instructor will receive a Grand Prize certificate and the opportunity to attend the IATEFL conference in March or April, 2018. 
    Runner-up Instructor
    The Runners-up Instructors will each receive a Grand Prize certificate and the opportunity to attend the IATEFL conference in March or April, 2018. 
    Second Runner-up Instructor
    The Second Runners-up Instructors will each receive a Grand Prize certificate and the opportunity to attend the Asia TEFL International Conference in August 2018. 
First Prize Instructor: This award will be presented to the instructors of the 13 First Prize winners. 
Instructors of the First Prize winners will each receive a First Prize certificate and an opportunity to go abroad or to Hong Kong and Macao on an exchange visit. 
Second Prize Instructor: This award will be presented to the instructors of the 69 Second Prize winners. 
Instructors of the Second Prize winners will each receive a Second Prize certificate and an award. 
Third Prize Instructor: This award will be presented to the instructors of the Third Prize winners. 
Instructors of the Third Prize winners will each receive a Third Prize certificate and an award. 
The Unipus Smart Teaching Fund: All award winning instructors of the National Finals will each be granted a 10,000 RMB Ucourse Membership card. With the card, instructors can learn all the Ucourse (http://ucourse.unipus.cn) teacher development membership courses. 
 
 
Notes about the exchange programs
 
1. Please note that the schedule of the exchange programs may be subject to change. FLTRP will notify all participants immediately if there is a change and will make every effort to help make other arrangements. Any disagreement by a prize winner about the arrangements made by FLTRP will be deemed as withdrawal from the program. 
2. FLTRP will cover the cost of travel (a return ticket for international flights between Beijing and the destination), registration and accommodation for prize winners. The prize winners will bear any other expenses.
3. Only instructors who have registered for the National Final can join the exchange programs but for each contestant there can be only one instructor.
4. The exchange programs are valid for only one year. The prize winners who are unable to join the exchange programs due to passport or visa application problems will forfeit the opportunity.
5. A contestant who wins more than one prize can only choose to attend one exchange program.
 
Key Events
 
May 18th, 2017: The organizers launch the preparatory meeting for the 2017 Uchallenge Contests, discussing the contest guidelines and determining the topic of the prepared speech for 2017.
 
May 25th - October 22nd, 2017: Registration for the “FLTRP Cup” English Public Speaking Online Contest is open and contestants can submit their video of the prepared speech on the official website.
 
November 24th, 2017: The results of the online contest will be announced.
 
December 4th-8th, 2017: The National Final
 
December 9th-10th, 2017: The Sixth National Symposium on English Public Speaking and Writing
 
“FLTRP Cup”English Public Speaking Contest
Secretariat of the Organizing Committee
June,2017