This essay proposes that argumentation be understood as a rhetorical analogue to hypothesis-testing in the scientific method. It is a means for determining what should be regarded as true in situations in which empirical methods are not available. The paradigm is described and implications of following it are explored. The specific concern of the essay is with argumentation as deployed in competitive academic debate (referred to as “forensics”) but its point of view is generally applicable. This essay was originally published in an anthology, Advanced Debate, edited by David A. Thomas and published by National Textbook Company in 1979.