Scouts BSA Advancement

Scouting’s advancement program remains structured yet flexible. Scouting provides a series of surmountable obstacles and the steps to overcome them through the rank advancement method. Each Scout plans his or her advancement and progresses as challenges are met.

Rank advancement is one method used by Scout leaders to help boys and girls fulfill the aims of Scouting: character development, citizenship training, and mental and physical fitness.

Rank Advancement

After being awarded the Scout badge by completing the joining requirements and participating in a Scoutmaster conference, there are six ranks that are earned sequentially: Tenderfoot, Second Class, First Class, Star, Life, and Eagle. Once the Scout completes the skills, participation and leadership requirements for each subsequent rank, the Scout participates in a Scoutmaster conference and a board of review. At a board of review, a Scout meets with an adult panel in an informal setting, presents their completion of requirements and answers questions.
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Merit Badges

Scouting offers over 130 merit badge opportunities to learn new skills, ranging from outdoor oriented endeavors like camping, to science and technology exploration through robotics. With exposure to a uniquely hands-on learning experience, Scouts unlock a world of discovery around them.
List of Merit Badges

Find Merit Badge Class opportunities!


Religious Awards

Each of 34 major religions has organized an Emblem program that adherents can pursue to strengthen their faith.



Check out where to put all your patches on your uniform.