Helping members off their crutches


The purpose of the Ah-Counter is to note any word or sound used as a crutch by anyone who speaks during the meeting.

Time: 1 - 2 minutes for introduction, 2 minutes for the report. 

Words may be inappropriate interjections, such as "and", "well", "but", "so" and "you know". Sounds may be "ah", "um" or "er". You should also note when a speaker repeats a word or phrase such as "I, I" or "This means, this means". These words and sounds can be annoying to listeners. The Ah-Counter role is an excellent opportunity to practice your listening skills.


Before the meeting, check the agenda of the meeting either here or from the Secretary to confirm which members are scheduled program participants.

You’ll also need to prepare a brief explanation of your duties. For the benefit of guests and new members, be sure to use the clearest possible language and rehearse your presentation. You will deliver this explanation during your introduction when called to the stage by the Toastmaster.

 Throughout the meeting, listen to everyone for sounds and long pauses used as fillers and not as a necessary part of sentence structure. You will be given a special ah-counter’s tally sheet (see PDF icon on the left) for your records. Write down how many filler sounds or words each person used during all portions of the meeting.

Every registered participant is added to the sheet. Table Topics speakers' names should be written down manually.


When you’re called on by the General Evaluator during the evaluation segment, come to the stage and give your report.


After the meeting, return the report to the Secretary.