Types of Merit Badges
Scouts are required to earn 21 merit badges, in order to earn the rank of Eagle Scout. Of the 21 merit badges, 13 are “Eagle-required”, and 8 are the Scout’s choice. In 2021, there will be 22 total required with the introduction of the new Eagle-required Diversity merit badge. There are currently over 135 merit badges to choose from, so there is something for everyone!
Earning Merit Badges
The current process for earning merit badges is as follows:
- Visit the BSA Merit Badge website for a listing of all merit badge requirements, and download the PDF corresponding to the “current” version of the merit badge(s) you are pursuing.
- Request contact information for a Merit Badge Counselor from your Scoutmaster. Presently, only Unit Leaders (Scoutmasters) have access to the contact information for MB Counselors. Many Troop 16 parents & leaders are active MB Counselors. We will first attempt to find a MB Counselor in Troop 16 to review your progress, but you are not required to work with someone in Troop 16. Any registered MB Counselor can provide approval, even if they are outside of our troop.
- Complete the requirements. Most requirements will require only a written response, but others will require Scouts to complete an action or a task that will need to be reviewed with their MB Counselor. Keep track of your progress and requirements completion — this can be done in a Google Doc, a notepad, spreadsheet, photos, email correspondence with your MB Counselor, etc. — anything that will document your completion will suffice.
- Show/Email your completed requirements (mentioned in Step 2) to your MB Counselor.
- Show/Email the approval from your MB Counselor to the Troop 16 Advancement Chair.
- Congratulations! You’re done! The Troop 16 Advancement Chair will now log your earned merit badge in Scoutbook.