What Is Advancement?

Advancement is the process by which youth members of the Boy Scouts of America progress from rank to rank in the Scouting program. Advancement is simply a means to an end, not an end in itself. Everything done to advance and earn these ranks, from joining until leaving the program, should be designed to help the young person 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 unit program.  


Are Rank Emblems and Merit Badges Restricted for purchase?

Before a unit can purchase Rank Emblems and Merit Badges from the Scout Shop, you will need to Submit to Council your Internet Advancement report. You can bring or email a copy of your report to the council office prior to arrival, or staff can access a digital copy. 


What are Units required to post for Advancements?

National BSA policy requires ALL Units to post scout advancements earned each calendar year no later than December 31st of year earned. This means Cub Scout Packs must post Rank Advancements, and Awards for all Cub Scouts; Boy Scout Troops, Varsity Teams, and Venturing Crews, must post Rank Advancements, Merit Badges, and Awards for all Boy Scouts, Varsity Scouts, and Venturers. Advancements posted online using the correct software ensures each Scout's scouting person record is recorded at the local council level and at the National Council level. Units can use the free online Internet Advancement tool to post automatically to the local council database; or they can purchase online software ScoutBook to post and interface to the local council database.  Any other purchased unit record keeping software from an outside source does not automatically interface with the local council database, therefore Units using this sort of software would also be required to post the advancements using Internet Advancement or ScoutBook. Units can access the free online Internet Advancement tool through my.scouting.org, Legacy Tools.


What Is Internet Advancement?

It is the quickest way for a unit to post rank advancements, awards, merit badges, belt loops, you name it, to a scout's record and it is now required for all units to use this form of reporting.  Units can print rosters, person summaries, unit advancement reports, temporary BSA Membership Cards, and much more. If you're unit is not currently using Internet Advancement, please contact Sandy Elkins, saelkins@bsamail.org for instructions and Unit ID number(s) or you can stop by my office, it only takes about 5 minutes to get your advancement person set-up and give them a quick tutorial. Click on Internet Advancement System on left menu to access the portal.


Advancement Educational Presentations

Click on the following link, http://www.scouting.org/scoutsource/BoyScouts/GuideforMeritBadgeCounselors/Resources/advancement_presentations.aspx, and you will have many opportunties to further your education on advancements.  Step by step powerpoint presentation for Internet Advancement, the essentials of Merit Badge Counseling, videos on subjects like How to hold a Board of Review, The Eagle Scout Application Process and much, much more.