Scouts BSA Advancement

Advancement - Scouts BSA - Basic Information

The term "advancement" means "rank advancement" in Scouts BSA.  This can mean several things, depending on where a Scout is in his/her Scouting career:  

    • Brand new Scouts
      • Brand new Scouts are learning about Scouting; they must learn very basic life skills and information about their new Boy Scout unit; their first rank is Scout
    • The trail to First Class
      • As a new Scout advances in rank, s/he will gain newer, more important life skills and Scouting skills that allow him to enjoy the outdoor activities his unit will participate in.  Her/his rank goes from Tenderfoot to Second Class to First Class, with the skill level and number of experiences growing as his rank level rises. Scouts in these earlier ranks also begin learning about giving service to others, including teaching Scouting skills to younger Scouts.  
    • The trail from Star to Life 
      • As a First Class Scout begins earning Merit Badges, some of which must be Eagle-required MBs, and learns to perform more service to others.  To earn the Star rank, some unit leadership is also required.  To earn Life rank, more MBs (including more Eagle-required MBs) are required; more leadership is required, and more service to others is performed.  Each level of rank advancement is more challenging than the previous rank, as you would expect.  
    • The trail from Life to Eagle
      • When a Life Scout aspires to become an Eagle Scout, more MBs are required, more and longer leadership is required, and an Eagle Scout Service Project is required.  This Eagle Scout Project has some guidelines;  
        • The Project benefit the Eagle Candidate's "community". 
        • The Eagle Candidate must demonstrate leadership in getting the Project accomplished, which is different than actually doing the Project himself.  
        • Funds to accomplish the Project must be raised by the Eagle Candidate in an appropriate manner and from approved sources. The Eagle Candidate will need to account for all funds raised, document all funds spent, and return any unused funds to an appropriate community resource/organization
        • Safety during Project execution is of primary concern.  
        • Planning the Project and accounting for the time of all Project workers, including the Eagle Candidate is essential.  

For each rank a Scout advances beyond the initial rank of Scout, he must demonstrate to his unit leader that he has lived by the ideals of the Scout Oath, Scout Law, Scout Motto, and Scout Slogan in his daily life.  He must undergo a Scoutmaster Conference.  He must also meet a Board of Review whose members are composed of the unit's Committee members; the purpose of this review is to discuss with the Scout his experiences during his recent rank advancement and to solicit input for improvement of the unit.  

For more detailed information on advancement to specific ranks, refer to the Scouts BSA Handbook.  

For more detailed information about Merit Badges, see this web page ==> here.  Note that this page also contains sites which reference rank advancement resources for Scout thru First Class in addition to MB information.  

For more detailed information on becoming an Eagle Scout, see this web page ==> here.  

Scouts BSA Advancement

Scouts BSA advancement consists of several ranks: 

  • Scout 
  • Tenderfoot
  • Second Class
  • First Class
  • Star
  • Life
  • Eagle

In addition to rank advancement, Scouts have the opportunity to earn Merit Badges (MBs), which help them develop & demonstrate skills in specialized interest areas. For example, to become an Eagle Scout, a Scout must earn 21 MBs, 13 of which are required (with 3 of those having alternate choices) and 8 of which are of the Scout's choosing. In addition, earning MBs beyond those required for Eagle allows the Eagle Scout to be eligible for Eagle Palms. 

Note: This page still under development. Thank you for your patience.