Advancement

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Advancement is the process by which youth members of the Boy Scouts of America progress from rank to rank (or to specific awards) in the Scouting program. Advancement opportunities are avaliable to Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, Varsity Scouts, and Venturers.

Advancement occurs when a youth member in a Scouting program completes a set of requirements and is recognized with a rank badge or an award designated as part of an advancement path.

Advancement may be a linear trail through ranks and awards (for Cub Scouting, Boy Scouting and Sea Scouting) or may be paths that branch into areas of specialties (Varsity Scouting and Venturing). Earning ranks or advancement awards involves fulfilling various requirements which may include earning badges, pins, emblems or other recognition awards.

Contents

Purpose

Advancement is one of the methods used to achieve the aims of Scouting in all four phases of the Scouting program (Cub Scouting, Boy Scouting, Varsity Scouting, and Venturing). The Aims and Methods of Scouting are character building, citizenship training, and physical and mental fitness.

Advancement is simply a means to an end, not an end in itself. Everything done to earn advancement, from joining until leaving the program, should be designed to help the youth member have an exciting and meaningful experience.

Education and fun are functions of the Scouting movement, and they must be the basis of the advancement program.

A fundamental principle of advancement in Cub Scouting, Boy Scouting, Varsity Scouting, and Venturing is the growth a young person achieves as a result of his/her participation in his/her unit program.

In Scouting, recognition is gained through leadership in the unit; attending and participating in the activities; living the ideals of Scouting; and developing a proficiency in outdoor life, useful skills, and career exploration.

Advancement in the Four Scouting Program Phases

Advancement is one of the methods used to achieve the aims of Scouting in all four phases of the Scouting program (Cub Scouting, Boy Scouting, Varsity Scouting, and Venturing). The aims of Scouting are character building, citizenship training, and physical and mental fitness.

Cub Scouts

Cub Scouting packs includes dens of Tiger, Wolf, Bear Cubs and Webelos.
Cub Scouting packs includes dens of Tiger, Wolf, Bear Cubs and Webelos.
Main article: Cub Scouting

The Cub Scout program in the den and pack is the basis for the Cub Scout's advancement. The steps in Cub Scout and Webelos Scout advancement procedures are preparation, qualification, and recognition.

Cub Scouts earn the Bobcat badge and then progress towards advancement starting at their age-appropriate den rank.

  1. Bobcat badge - For all new youth members.
  2. Tiger Cub - For first grade-aged boys
  3. Wolf Cub Scout - For second grade-aged boys
  4. Bear Cub Scout - For third grade-aged boys
  5. Webelos Scout badge - For fourth and fifth grade-aged boys
  6. Arrow of Light Award - Cub Scouting's highest award.

The Arrow of Light is the only rank patch that a Cub Scout can wear on a uniform of the other BSA programs.

Boy Scouts

Boy Scouting troops includes New Scout Patrols, Experienced Patrols, and Venture Patrols.
Boy Scouting troops includes New Scout Patrols, Experienced Patrols, and Venture Patrols.
Main article: Boy Scout Ranks

The Boy Scout requirements for rank are the basis for a Boy Scout's advancement. There are four steps in the Boy Scout advancement procedure: learning, testing, reviewing, and recognition.

Boy Scout Advancement is for boys 11 years and older and younger than 18 earn the Scout Badge upon joining and progress along the Eagle trail. Unless stated otherwise, requirements may be completed at any time, but ranks are received in sequence and according to time and leadership requirements.

1. Scout badge - Boy Scout joining requirements.
2. Tenderfoot
3. Second Class
4. First Class
5. Star Scout
6. Life Scout
7. Eagle Scout Award - Boy Scouting's highest award.
8. Eagle Palms - Recognition for further service, growth, and tenure.

The Eagle Scout Award may be worn on a uniform of Venturers and Sea Scouts. The Star, Life and Eagle patch may be worn on the uniform of Venturers.

Varsity Scouts

Varsity Scouting teams are composed of one or more squads.
Varsity Scouting teams are composed of one or more squads.

The Varsity Scout advancement follows the same rank requirements to Eagle and Eagle Palms as those for Boy Scouts. Supplementing this Eagle trail, a Varsity Scouts is also eligible for the additional advancement opportunity of earning the Denali Award. To do this he must earn at least one Varsity Letter, and serve as Program Manager (a position of responsibility), acting as primary leader in at least two of the fields of emphasis and participating in the remaining three fields.

The Program Manager for advancement (one of the five fields of emphasis) is responsible for planning and encouraging team advancement activities. The youth Program Manager is assisted by an adult Program Advisor who is a member of the team committee.

Varsity Scouts 14 years and older and younger than 18 follow the same rank requirements as Boy Scouts; team members frequently have previous service or are dual registered in a Boy Scout troop. Varsity Letter and Denali Award requirements may be earned immediately upon joining the team, but members must advance at least one rank toward Eagle or earn an Eagle Palm.

Boy Scouting advancement

1. Scout badge - Boy Scout joining requirements.
2. Tenderfoot
3. Second Class
4. First Class
5. Star Scout
6. Life Scout
7. Eagle Scout
8. Eagle Palms

Varsity Scouting advancement

1. Varsity Letter
2. Denali Award - Varsity Scouting's highest award.

The Denali Award may be worn on a uniform of Venturers and Sea Scouts.

Venturing

Venturing units include crews of Venturers and ships of Sea Scouts.
Venturing units include crews of Venturers and ships of Sea Scouts.
Main article: Venturing advancement

Venturers/Sea Scouts who have completed eight grade 14 years and older and younger than 21 may begin work toward a Bronze Award or Apprentice Sea Scout rank upon joining. Sea Scouts in a ship may work earn Venturing basic advancement and expert-level award, but Venturers in a crew cannot earn Sea Scout ranks outside of a ship.

A male Venturer or Sea Scout is eligible for Eagle rank before his 18th birthday, providing he has previously achieved Star or Life in a Boy Scout troop or Varsity Scout team.

The basic advancement system

1. Venturing Bronze Award
2. Venturing Gold Award
3. Venturing Silver Award - Venturing's highest award.

Expert-level awards

Sea Scouts

Sea Scout ranks - Apprentice, Ordinary, Able, and the Quartermaster Award may be earned by all Sea Scouts who meet certain requirements. Details on Sea Scouting advancement can be found in the Sea Exploring Manual.

Sea Scouting ranks
  1. Apprentice rank
  2. Ordinary rank
  3. Able rank
  4. Quartermaster Award - Sea Scouting's highest award.

See also


Advancement Policies
Advancement (Report) Boy Scouts (Resources) Service Projects
Rules and Regulations First Class-First Year Eagle Scout Project
 What is Scout Spirit?  Scoutmaster Conferences Lifesaving Awards
When is a Scout Active? Time Extensions Summer Camp
When is a Scout in Uniform? Boards of Review - Appeals Merit Badges, Events & FAQ
Scouts with Special Needs Advancement Campout  Cub Scouts  (Resources)
Religious Principle Courts of Honor Varsity (Resources)
Books & References  12 Steps From Life to Eagle  Venturing & Sea Scouts  
Click here for Many more Advancement Policies
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