Merit Badge Requirement Updates 2023

Requirement Updates 2023

Merit badge requirement updates from 2023 Scouts BSA Requirements (33216):

The 2023 Scouts BSA Requirements Handbook (BSA Publication No. 33216) should soon be available for purchase on and in Scout Shops.
These changes are effective Jan 1, 2023 and now reflected in Scoutbook and on

American Business (2c)
Animal Science (1, Avian Option a, c, e)
Archery (1a, b, c, d, 3b, 4a, b, c, d, 5ac, 5af1cd, 5bc, 5bf1cd)
Architecture (1b)
Composite Materials (1c 3a)
Cooking (2c, d, 4a, 5b, d, e, g, 6a, f)
Cycling (1a, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 Option A a1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, Option B a1, 3, b1, 2, 3, c, d, e)
Digital Technology (3a, 3e, 4a, 5a, 7c)
Disabilities Awareness (6)
Emergency Preparedness (3)
Environmental Science (3, 3f2, 5)
Family Life (6b1, 2, 3)
Farm Mechanics (1d)
Game Design (1b, 5b, 8a, b)
Genealogy (1a, b, c, 4a, b, c, d, e, 8b, c)
Geology (5d2)
Golf (3, 7g)
Hiking (2a, b, c, 4, 5)
Inventing (6b)
Mammal Study (3a, b, c)
Nature (4g2, 4h1, 6a, b)
Personal Fitness (4d)
Plant Science (8 Option 3 Field Botany A2, B, F1d, F3c1, 2, 3)
Programming (1b, 3a)
Reptile and Amphibian Study (3d, 5)
Salesmanship (2b, 2d, 3, 4, 6a3)
Small-Boat Sailing (6i, j)
Snow Sports (2b, 7 Downhill a, h, i; Cross country a, b, d, i; Snowboarding i, k; Snowshoeing e, i, j)
Sports (5)
Swimming (5a)

The following explanation from the [2021 edition of the Guide to Advancement]( explains what to do when merit badge requirements change: What to Do When Requirements Change

Merit badge requirements, along with changes to them, can be found at the Merit Badges web page: Once new or revised requirements appears on that page, any Scout beginning work on a merit badge must use the requirement as stated there.

Changes may also be introduced in a revised merit badge pamphlet, youth handbook, or other official BSA publication or release before appearing on the Merit Badges web page. In this case, unless official communications set forth a different procedure or establish a date by when use of the old requirements must cease, youth members have through December 31 of that year to decide what to do. They may continue - or begin work - using the old requirements, or they may switch to - or begin work - using the new requirements. Scouts who choose to use the old requirements may continue using them until the merit badge is completed. Scouts who have not begun work on a badge by December 31 of the year a change in its requirements is announced must use the new requirements.

There is no time limit between starting and completing a badge, although a counselor may determine so much time has passed since any effort took place that the new requirements must be used.