U. S. Scouting Service Project at http://usscouts.org


Effective: April 1, 1999

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A number of changes were made to the requirements for ranks and various merit badges in the 1999 edition of Boy Scout Requirements. The new requirements for rank advancement became mandatory on April 1, 1999. Scouts who have already started a merit badge may continue to use the old requirements until their 18th birthday.  Scouts that started a Merit Badge after April 1, 1999, must use the new requirements.

When there is a conflict between two published lists of requirements, such as the Requirements Book and a Merit Badge Pamphlet, even when the pamphlet has a later issue date, the Requirements Book should be considered to be the controlling document, until a newer edition of the Requirements Book is issued.

There was one MAJOR exception to the preceding statement in 1999.  Subsequent to the publication of the 1999 Requirements book, the requirements for Personal Fitness Merit Badge were revised, with an effective date of April 1, 1999, like the changes in the book. The revisions were distributed on BSA Publication 18-083, released in late March. Scouts could use EITHER the old or new requirements for this Merit Badge until April 1, 2000.


Joining Requirements (Scout Badge)
Second Class
First Class
Eagle Palms


Animal Science
Environmental Science
Personal Fitness
Small-Boat Sailing


Bird Study
Graphic Arts
Snow Sports (REPLACED Skiing)


Boardsailing BSA
Leave No Trace Awareness Award
Paul Bunyan Woodsman
Religious Emblems

Boardsailing.jpg (20062 bytes)Boardsailing BSA


  1. Review the BSA guidelines for boardsailing and explain steps you have taken to follow each of the eleven guidelines found on page 4-42 of Camp Program and Property Management, No. 90-920.
  2. Explain precautions to be taken for boardsailing on each of the following.
    1. Lakes
    2. Rivers
    3. Ocean or bay areas
  3. What is hypothermia? Describe to your counselor the symptoms of hypothermia. What special considerations are necessary for boardsailing?
  4. Properly rig and prepare the sailboard you are using. Point out and explain the function of each of the following: uphaul, outhaul, downhaul, cleat, leach, tack, clew, foot, skeg, centerboard, wishbone boom, universal, luff, and center of effort. Explain how to steer the sailboard.
  5. Demonstrate your ability to uphaul the sail, find the neutral position to the wind (sail luffing), and control the board's position with foot movement.
  6. With supervision from your instructor, sail a course that involves beating, reaching, and running. Change tack by coming about.

lnt.gif (5473 bytes)Leave No Trace Awareness Award

Scout Requirements

  1. Recite and explain the principles of Leave No Trace.
  2. On three separate camping/back-packing trips demonstrate and practice the principles of Leave No Trace.
  3. Earn the Camping and Environmental Science merit badges.
  4. Participate in a Leave No Trace-related service project.
  5. Give a 10-minute presentation on a Leave No Trace topic approved by your Scoutmaster.
  6. Draw a poster or build a model to demonstrate the differences in how we camp or travel in high-use and pristine areas

Note: These requirements can be used by Venturers as well as Scouts.  There are  also requirements for Scouters and Advisors who wish to earn the award.  See the requirements page for the Adult requirements

Paul Bunyan Woodsman

The requirements were actually changed in 1996, but were not identified on the inside front cover of the 1996-1997 book.

The introduction was changed as follows:

Study chapter 6 in the FIELDBOOK the Boy Scout Handbook and the Camping merit badge pamphlet, and demonstrate to your Scoutmaster or other qualified person designated by him the following:

Item 3 was deleted, and Items 4b and 4e were deleted, and the remaining portions of item 4 were renumbered 3a, 3b, and 3c.

Religious Emblems

The list of Religious emblems for Boy Scouts, and the addresses of the various organizations which present them has been revised and rearranged.  Click here to see the revised list.

There is also a list of Religious emblems for Cub Scouts, and the addresses of the various organizations which present them. Click here to see the list.

Page updated on: November 28, 2017

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