Scouting Forums

Requirements completed in Scouts BSA before joining Sea Scouts

This question involves a “what would you do” for Sea Scout requirements.

Example 1
Ordinary Rank Requirement 4: Complete the requirements for the Swimming merit badge.

In this example, we have a scout who completed the Swimming merit badge maybe at summer camp when they were 12 or 13, before joining Sea Scouts. Once they join Sea Scouts, do we need to complete the requirements for the Swimming merit badge again or can we presume that the requirement has been met?

Example 2
Ordinary Rank 10a: (a) Demonstrate your understanding of latitude and longitude. Using a chart, demonstrate that you can locate your position from given coordinates and determine the coordinates of at least five aids to navigation.

Here’s another example where a scout may have completed these requirements before joining the ship (perhaps in a Maritime Explorer Club or some other place). Would the scout need to repeat the requirement in this case?

My gut tells me that if the scout has the merit badge there’s no reason to repeat it, but for something like the second example it should be shown again if only for safety’s sake.

Any other thoughts or official response?

There is a specific answer for Venturers. I do not know if it would be the same answer for Sea Scouts or not.


Policy on Unauthorized Changes to Advancement Program

No council, committee, district, unit, or individual has the authority to add to, or subtract from, advancement requirements. There are limited exceptions relating only to members with special needs. For details see section 10, “Advancement for Members With Special Needs.”

per Guide to Advancement Scouts BSA Advancement in Sea Scouts.

Sea Scouts who earned First Class rank when registered in Scouts BSA are qualified until their 18th birthday to continue with Scouts BSA advancement. … With the exception of the Eagle and Quartermaster service projects, any work done while a Sea Scout can count toward both Scouts BSA and Sea Scout advancement at the same time.

per Guide to Advancement 2019, Mechanics of Advancement in Sea Scouts, Scouts BSA Advancement in Sea Scouts.

NOTE: Sea Scouts 18 years and older may pass certain Scouts BSA merit badge requirements for Sea Scouts BSA advancement. Fulfilling More Than One Requirement With a Single Activity (extract)

From time to time it may be appropriate for a Scout to apply what was done to meet one requirement toward the completion of another. In deciding whether to allow this, unit leaders or merit badge counselors should consider the following.

When, for all practical purposes, two requirements match up exactly and have the same basic intent—for example, camping nights for Second Class and First Class ranks and for the Camping merit badge—it is appropriate and permissible, unless it is stated otherwise in the requirements, to use those matching activities for both the ranks and the merit badge.

Where matching requirements are oriented toward safety, such as those related to first aid or CPR, the person signing off the requirements should be satisfied the Scout remembers what was learned from the previous experience.

Some requirements may have the appearance of aligning, but upon further examination actually differ. These seemingly similar requirements usually have nuances intended to create quite different experiences. …

per Guide to Advancement, 2019, Mechanics of Advancement in Scouts BSA

Swimming example

I do not know without asking BSA national.

Are you using the current Sea Scout BSA advancement requirements effective May 2017? It has “pass” instead of “complete” in the swimming requirement statement.

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