Space Exploration Topic Closed but issue still exists

This was previously listed in forums but was closed. The issue still remains. For Space Exploration merit badge requirement #3, there needs to be an additional signoff button, such as “3.j.” or “3.1” in Scoutbook. The requirement has an additional part that requires a scout to “fly a rocket”. If a scout flies the rocket but then doesn’t identify the parts of the rocket, Scoutbook flags it as though the scout didn’t fly the rocket. The merit badge pamphlet was written to account for a paper system, so it isn’t database friendly. Scoutbook must be modified to account for issue or merit badge pamphlet should be updated.
Please resolve before closing.

This is no issue - It is clearly written #3 - Build, launch, and recover a model rocket - cannot get much clearer than Launch. We use the written requirements - GTA clearly says requirements cannot be modified

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Please re-read my comment. It has still not been addressed. If a scout flies the rocket, how is that checked off in Scoutbook?

Scoutbook allows the merit badge counselor to check off identification of parts of a rocket but does not allow the counselor to check off that they have flown the rocket.

If you think it is an error take it up with your council for a change - This is how the requirement is written.

Is there a work-around? I just taught the merit badge at winter camp and several scouts launched the rockets but they did not do the paperwork (not my favorite part either, but its still a requirement) to identify the rocket parts. I want to give them credit for launching but there is no way to do that part only. Just trying to help them out, but Scoutbook won’t allow me to do that…

I could just sign off on number 3 a-i, appearing to give them credit for launch, but then that isn’t fair to all the scouts who did the identification steps…

I am sorry you have trouble understanding @ThomasCarroll - the written requirement is “Build, launch, and recover a model rocket.* Make a second launch to accomplish a specific objective. (Rocket must be built to meet the safety code of the National Association of Rocketry. See the “Model Rocketry” chapter of the Space Exploration merit badge pamphlet.) Identify and explain the following rocket parts:”

Take paper notes perhaps.

I have MBCed this badge for nearly a decade and have never had an issue.


I am understanding that you are not reading my statement based on all of your responses.


An MBC cannot sign off that a scout has launched a rocket. Period. That’s all I am saying. That is my issue here. Scouts launched the rocket (requirement #3), but did not identify the rocket (sub-requirements 3a-3i). I want to give them credit for completing the launch, but its unfair to give them credit for sub-requirements a-i when all the other scouts did that part. My current options are to 1. give them no credit for flying the rocket or 2. unfairly give them credit for sub-requirements a-i.

Actually, that’s not correct. You could, for example, note in the comments for the requirement that the building, launching and recovery were completed. Note your name, contact info and the council in which you are a registered MBC. That should be enough information for a subsequent MBC to confirm that the work was done, and that you were (at the time) an approved MBC for this badge.

Sincerely, thank you for reading the issue. That is an option that i would employ if i could. Unfortunately the issue is farther downstream… the software that is used by my council does not allow for MBC’s to input comments in. It just directly pulls from Scoutbook and then reloads back into Scoutbook. My options are only the two listed in the previous comment. Genuinely thanks for taking time to respond with a workaround.

Stated another way, completing all of the sub requirements incorrectly gives credit for all of requirement 3. I agree that its implementation in scoutbook (as it appears on paper) is not consistent with the full written requirement.

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Thank you! Now… how does it get fixed? Do I just need to go through my Council and ask to have the requirement changed so that it will work in Scoutbook or is there a way that Scoutbook can be modified to accommodate it the way that it is written?

It sounds like what you’re looking for, @ThomasCarroll, is a different breakdown of the requirements than is structured in the official requirements. That is, you’re looking to have the equivalent of

  • 3(a) Build launch and recover…
  • 3(b) Make a second launch to accomplish…
  • Current 3(a) through 3(i) relabeled as 3(c) through 3(k)
    even if no actual “renumbering” is done (i.e. just adding separate checkboxes for the two launches).

I can see @DonovanMcNeil’s concern that this could be seen as a “revision” to the requirements, depending on the perspective that the program committee takes. In addition, there may be practical considerations for how this would be coded. If a requirement is not numbered, how is it tracked in the software? Similarly, if Scoutbook permits separately signing-off the launches, how would this be recorded on a blue card in the absence of separate numbering? Scouts and counselors are allowed to use either system, so the “fix” has to work in both cases. I think the only way to effectively implement this request for long-term reliability would be to renumber the requirements to break out the two launches. That likely requires renumbering everything, which is, albeit minimal, a program change (not just a programming change). You used to be able to directly reach out to the relevant program committee to suggest changes to merit badges via email. Going via your council might be the only way now.

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@ThomasCarroll - that is a requirement re-write. Off to council you go with the change request.

Got it. Re-write the requirement because Scoutbook database can’t handle. Easy day. Thanks for your help, guys.