Scouting Forums

Duty to God Double Dipping

Can you work on both Duty to God and You (WEBELOS requirement) and Duty to God in Action (AOL requirement) at the same time? Typically they will say when they can’t or say “while a WEBELOS” do… However, I can’t find anything to say they can’. I do see in the 2019 Guide to Advancements that they are a combined and that the exception to moving ahead on advancements is with WEBELOS.

One of my mom’s wants credit for both and I think it would be fine but I wanted to do a little research first.

#1 Is exactly the same requirement
#4 is almost the same & if they “do TWO things you think will help you better do your duty to God.” for their AOL requirement, then haven’t they done “ONE thing you think will help you better do your duty to God.” for their WEBELOS requirement?

I am not asking about the religious emblem award requirement becuase it specifically says, " if you have not done so already."

New guidance from the BSA says:

Fourth Grade - Webelos Requirements

“Scouts who are in Cub Scouts in fourth grade must complete the Webelos rank before working towards their Arrow of Light.”

The Guide to Advancement (updated in February) says: Cub Scout Ranks
“Likewise, Cub Scouts do not “move ahead” to work on the next rank until the completion of the current school year (or until their next birthday if their chartered organization transitions by age), with the exception of those who earned the Webelos rank in the fourth grade.”


@JenniferOlinger is correct! Scouting is cyclic in nature and themes are repeated over and over; often as this builds base knowledge that combines in Boy Scouts and the pinnacle is Eagle Scout.

So the short answer is NO, as each year the scout returns and goes over requirements to reinforce knowledge at a minimum. Den Leaders who work through achievements in a year may want to do the achievements in the fall again in the spring to reinforce knowledge.


–Amended to add: “In Cub Scouts”:
One activity can’t count for multiple Advancement requirements… no matter what the rank or year.

There’s a bit of subtlety to that argument, I think, @DanielPawlak

For example, at the Scouts BSA level, you are required to participate in 5 events (3 outdoors) since joining Scouts BSA as part of earning Second Class. For First Class, you are required to participate in 10 events (6 outdoors). These can include the 5 (3) previously used for Second Class.

The 2019 Guide to Advancement has a section on this ( for Scouts BSA). There’s a great example there about Communication MB vs Citizenship in the Community MB that explains using a single event as part of completing different requirements.

I’m not aware of a similar section under the Cub Scouts section, but logically it would appear consistent to apply it at the Cub Scout level as well.

Depending on the circumstances, one activity could count for more than one advancement requirement. (Guide to Advancement section “Fulfilling More Than One Requirement With a Single Activity” is in the Scouts BSA section, but it could also be used as a guide for Cub Scouts).

But going back to the original question, new guidance from the BSA says that Webelos Scouts who are currently in the 4th grade must complete the Webelos rank before they start working towards the Arrow of Light rank. This new guidance does not seem to allow for double-dipping, because the Scout cannot work on both Duty to God adventures at the same time.

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Single event, yes. Single activity (subset of stuff happening at an event), I’d still argue “no”… with a bit more subtext added “unless the requirement specifies otherwise.”

Notice I also said can’t count for multiple Advancement. As that section illustrates, it is permissible for an activity (hike, etc.) to count for both a rank advancement req and an award (merit badge) req.

Not to quibble too much, but a merit badge is considered advancement, not an award. In any case, as @JenniferOlinger pointed out, with the new guidance from nationals, the distinction is mooted for the original question, since Duty to God in Action can’t be started until after Webelos is earned.

I think we would be engaging in hair splitting to some extent if we’re trying to distinguish activities at an event from an event, at least in many cases. There are some situations where it might make sense, but others where it’s not an applicable distinction.

There is nothing in the 2018 Cub Scout Webelos handbooks (issued last summer) that precludes working on Arrow of Light required Adventures at any time as a Webelos Scout.

I’m not disputing @JenniferOlinger 's information from what is now on websites and Feb 2019 Advancement … but it would be tough to not approve completed items for any Webelos Scout (who started last June) based on subsequent updates to

Historically, there is a grace period involving any changes of substance to requirements. The Guide to Advancement doesn’t even have similar language as the link, and I would defer to the Guide over all else. In my recollection, has had plenty of occasions where its verbiage differs from officially published text.

There never were restrictions on working on specific requirements in the old program, and when the new program was rolled out, it was noted that Scouts could work on any Webelos/AoL Adventure as they were all part of the same Webelos program. To quote a bit of previous text from after the 2016 addendum was released:

All Cub Scouts, except for those boys who join Cub Scouting for the first time in fifth grade, must earn their Webelos rank prior to earning Arrow of Light. The requirements for Webelos and Arrow of Light may be worked on at the same time but the tenure requirements for each must be met and the awards must be earned and presented sequentially.

I’d also note that Scoutbook does not limit entry/approval of AoL required Adventure requirements until after Webelos badge is earned.

Merit Badge may be considered Advancement, but it is analogous to Awards in Cub Scouts (the phase the OP was discussing to which I replied) in that activities can count for both rank advancement & these items.

Cub Scout adventures are somewhat analogous to Scouts BSA merit badges.

It is correct that Scoutbook does not currently limit entry / approval of AOL required adventures until after the Webelos rank is earned. In part, this is because Webelos Scouts in LDS packs are still allowed to work on both ranks simultaneously (they go by age, not grade).

Long story short, if a parent in my Pack was asking if their first year Webelos Scout could work on Arrow of Light requirements, my answer would be (and has been) yes, as long as your Scout isn’t trying to have one specific activity count for reqs on two different Webelos or AoL Adventures. Specifically, to get both Webelos & AoL Duty to God Adventures done requires two instances of “do these things for one month” activities.

I’d also point out that it is preferred they work on Webelos activities first, but of course observing one’s faith can be done concurrently while working on other things.

If you can’t start on AoL before finishing Webelos then there’s a major problem in Scoutbook. I have a fourth grader show as 30% done with Arrow of Light. It automatically applied an elective and Cyber Chip as a 4th grader counts again as a 5th grader.

And EVERY AoL item can be marked as complete. This is only true for 4th graders, a 2nd grader can’t see 3rd grade requirements.

However, Cyber chip finished as a 1st grader is usable through 3rd grade for rank advancement. It automatically assigns completion.

Yes, as I explained earlier in this thread, Webelos Scouts in LDS packs are still allowed to work on the Webelos and AOL ranks simultaneously, because they go by age, not grade (they work on both ranks between their 10th and 11th birthdays). In addition, the Webelos / AOL elective adventures are shared and can be worked on at any time.



Although I understand the rule to be that a Scout in fourth grade cannot begin to work on AoL requirements unless s/he has earned the Webelos rank, I presumed this did not apply to the elective adventure pin. If it did, a Scout who earned all the elective adventure pins prior to completing the Webelos rank requirements (improbable but theoretically possible) would then have no way to earn the AoL. Since that outcome makes no sense, the logical conclusion is that an adventure pin earned while working on the Webelos rank can be used for the AoL requirement.

My pack is in Delaware, and the age used to determine when you start school is as of August 31. As a result, I have one Webelos Scout with an August birthday who has not yet earned the Arrow of Light and will complete fifth grade on June 14. He will then be eligible for Scouts BSA youth membership, about two months short of turning 11. Although eligible for Scouts BSA membership, it is my understanding that he may continue working on the Arrow of Light until the day before his 11th birthday, even though he has completed the fifth grade. Of course, he would need to remain registered as a Cub Scout, and may not attend summer camp with a Scouts BSA troop or earn merit badges. The definition of Webelos-level Scouts in section of the Guide to Advancement includes those who are 10 years old, and the description of those eligible to work on the Arrow of Light rank says those who have completed fourth grade. It does not restrict it to those who have not yet completed fifth grade.

Alternatively, the Guide to Advancement allows the pack committee to grant a Scout who is close to completing the rank for his age a few extra weeks before transitioning to a new den. Since there is no new “den” to which this Scout will transition, I don’t think the pack committee can grant him any more time after his 11th birthday.

We have another Scout, just a few weeks younger than the first, who will be 11 in September but is just finishing fourth grade. For the AoL service requirement of six months of service since turning 10 or finishing the fourth grade, he had six months in March. That would not even require overlapping the three months needed for the Webelos rank, which I think would be clearly inappropriate. However, if he cannot begin working on AoL requirements until he has earned the Webelos rank or completed fourth grade, it seems to me that his six months cannot start until the date he earned the Webelos rank, which was April. This means he would complete it in October. He will be eligible to join a Scouts BSA troop in September, when he turns 11, but he will have to wait until October, if he wants to take the AoL with him. Do you agree?

The second Scout is signed up for our council’s four-night Webelos camp over the summer. He already has an elective adventure. It would come as no surprise to me if he has all his AoL required adventures completed in September. If everything works out, we plan to have him cross over in December.

Thanks for your help and for all you do for Scoutbook.

Yours in Scouting,


Peter, I would recommend that you contact your council Registrar for guidance. My understanding is that they can (technically) continue working on the Arrow of Light rank as long as they as still on the pack roster (but not on a troop roster). As far as I know, they are not automatically dropped from the pack roster on their 11th birthday, but they would be unable to recharter with the pack after a certain point (I believe age 11.5) unless they have special needs.

Just my opinion, but after a Webelos Scout has completed the 5th grade, it starts to become a trade off: is it better for the Scout to stay with the pack a little bit longer and complete the Arrow of Light rank or is it better to go ahead and join a troop (and be able to attend summer camp, start earning merit badges, etc.)? This is probably something that the parents and the pack committee need to decide.

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There is one notable exception to this that I am aware of. Wolf’s Paws on the Path, requirement 4 explicitly states that it “may be combined with requirement 3 of the Call of the Wild adventure.” Aside from this notable exception, it is generally true that one activity may only count for one requirement. The Cub Scout World Conservation Award, for example, explicitly states that “Requirements for this award must be completed in addition to any similar requirements completed for rank.”

Can you tell I’m planning next year for my Wolf scouts?

The only time double dipping is not permitted is when it is explicitly prohibited such as the Cub Scout World Conservation Award. If the requirements for 2 awards line up, a single activity can be used for both.

It really just comes down to how you define “a single activity” and “requirement”. Do what you feel is best in keeping with the spirit of Scouting.
If I take my Scouts on a hike just before we get to work on a Conservation Project at the same location, those are definitely two activities on one outing in my view. Even the one hiking activity could cover multiple Wolf requirements for Call of the Wild, Paws on the Path, bring a map & compass and it could also count for Finding Your Way, play a game while on the hike and you’re hitting Running with the Pack, and so on.

That new Webe/AOL guidance statement becomes a serious problem for small Packs with a combined Web 1 & 2 den. We developed a “combo” adventure pin plan with related activities - one level is completing a required adventure (Webelos or AOL), while the other is completing an elective adventure (if they already have the required one). Duty to God is not a combo. The Webe pin has to be finished before starting the AOL pin. The only part they do as a den is a service project for the Chartering Organization. The rest is done individually, with their family & church.