Adult Training Courses: Scouts BSA
Adult Training Courses: Scouts BSA
As a Scouts BSA Leader, you owe it to your youth to learn as much as you can about Scouting and how to run your troop. For all positions, you must complete Youth Protection Training and the position-specific training for your registered Scouting position. Scoutmasters and Assistant Scoutmasters must also take Introduction to Outdoor Leader Skills (IOLS).
You’ll find all of the required training courses below in the “Required Scouts BSA Courses” section. Most of these required courses are available online through BSA’s My.Scouting.org training portal.
There are additional courses you may take that will expand your knowledge of how Scouting works or help you learn new Scouting skills. You’ll find those listed below in the “Optional” section.
Required Scouts BSA Courses
Scoutmaster/Assistant Scoutmaster-Specific Training (required if you are going to be a Scoutmaster or Assistant Scoutmaster)
This course provides Scoutmasters and Assistant Scoutmasters with the basic information and tools they need to lead successful Scouts BSA Troops (although, when done right, your youth will lead the troop and you’ll supervise and mentor). When you finish Youth Protection Training, this course, and Introduction to Outdoor Leader Skills, you are considered what we call a “fully trained” Scoutmaster or Assistant Scoutmaster.
- You may take Scoutmaster-Specific Training in a self-paced online course through the Boy Scouts of America’s national web training center called My.Scouting.org.
- Often, volunteers in your district (that’s the area of our council to which your unit belongs, usually defined by school district attendance boundaries) will teach an in-person version of Scoutmaster-Specific Training. Taking the class this way typically takes about 4 hours, but it gives you the chance to ask someone who’s already done the job before how they handled certain situations. You can check our events calendar to see if there is an in-person version of the class being offered soon near you.
- If you still feel like you’re not sure what Scoutmaster-Specific Training is, visit this page for a little more information.
Troop Committee Challenge Training (required if you are going to be a Troop Committee Chair or Committee Member)
This course is designed for Scouts BSA Troop committees (the troop committee is a group of adults led by the Committee Chair who handles the “business side” of running a Scouts BSA Troop). It is required if you are going to be registered as a Troop Committee Chair or Troop Committee Member. When you finish Youth Protection Training and this course, you are considered what we call a “fully trained” Troop Committee Chair or Troop Committee Member.
- You may take Troop Committee Challenge Training in a self-paced online course through the Boy Scouts of America’s national web training center called My.Scouting.org.
- Often, volunteers in your district (that’s the area of our council to which your unit belongs, usually defined by school district attendance boundaries) will teach an in-person version of Troop Committee Challenge Training. Taking the class this way typically takes about 3 hours and gives you the chance to ask someone who’s already done the job before how they handled certain situations. You can check our events calendar to see if there is an in-person version of the class being offered soon near you.
- If you still feel like you’re not sure what Troop Committee Challenge Training is, visit this page for a little more information.
Introduction to Outdoor Leadership Skills – IOLS (required for Scoutmasters and Assistant Scoutmasters)
Introduction to Outdoor Leadership Skills (IOLS) is a hands-on outdoor course with an overnight component that provides adult Scouts BSA leaders with the practical skills they need to lead Scouts while camping. Upon completion, leaders should feel comfortable teaching Scouts the basic skills required to obtain Scouts BSA’s First Class rank. When you finish Youth Protection Training, Scoutmaster Position-Specific Training, and this course, you are considered what we call a “fully trained” Scoutmaster or Assistant Scoutmaster. You must have at least one adult with this training on every troop camp out.
- There is not an online version of this course. It requires an overnight stay (you are learning how to camp, after all).
- Volunteers in your district (that’s the area of our council to which your unit belongs, usually defined by school district attendance boundaries) often teach Introduction to Outdoor Leader Skills Training. Please check our events calendar to see when the next course is being offered near you.
- If you still feel like you’re not sure what Introduction to Outdoor Leadership Skills Training is, visit this page for a little more information.
Merit Badge Counselor Training (for adults registering as a Merit Badge Counselor)
This 90-minute course provides new and prospective merit badge counselors with the basic knowledge and skills needed to get started, and can serve as a refresher to veteran merit badge counselors. It involves a step-by-step overview of the registration and approval process, the Youth Protection training requirement, and helpful methods and resources. Participants will learn about their unique role, the process of counseling, and the related BSA national policies and procedures.
- Merit Badge Counselors Training is offered as a self-paced online course through the Boy Scouts of America’s national web training center called My.Scouting.org.
- If you have questions about Merit Badge Counselors Training or the steps necessary to become a registered Merit Badge Counselor, visit this page for more information.
Why doesn't my training show up in my BSA records?
Often leaders are surprised to receive notification that they are not trained. Most often, the volunteer was actually not registered in the position they are holding. Sometimes they have not correctly registered in My.Scouting.org and their trainings are not being recorded. Leaders may call (512) 617-8618 to get answers to their training status and questions.
Optional Training Courses Scouts BSA Leaders May Take
Wood Badge is BSA’s “next level” training course that puts you in the position of your Scouts, working together as members of a Cub Scout Pack, Scouts BSA Troop, and Venturing Crew.
Providing a challenging outdoor program for older youth isn’t easy. Experience the solution at Powder Horn where Scout leaders learn how to plan and safely conduct an intriguing range of outdoor adventures.
University of Scouting
Come for just the morning or all day, to focus on serious topics or just to have fun learning new skills! The University of Scouting offers more than 100 classes in 5 different “colleges,” with dozens of new classes each year.
Scouting’s strength is in the people who belong to the program. MEGA Training offers you to meet other Scouting volunteers like yourself while also taking one of those important training courses you need to finish to become a better leader.
Climbing Instructor Training
Climbing and Rappelling are among the few Scouting activities which challenge and captivate the imagination of all ages.
C.O.P.E. Facilitator Training
C.O.P.E. is a set of group initiative games and low and high course activities where participants climb, swing, balance, jump, and think of solutions to a variety of activities.
Chaplain Fast Start Training
Our three-part Chaplain training program is focused on providing the best trained and motivated adult leaders, volunteers and youth members.
Wilderness First Aid
Wilderness First Aid is a 16-hour hands-on course that emphasizes issues that may be encountered with illness and injury when definitive medical care is more than one hour away.
Hazardous Weather Training
All “direct contact” leaders are required to take BSA’s Hazardous Weather Training to be considered fully trained in their position.
Safe Swim Defense
Whenever Scouts swim, the BSA’s Safe Swim Defense plan must be followed. This training will cover the plan’s eight points.
Before a BSA group may engage in any watercraft activity, adult leaders for such activity must complete Safety Afloat training, have a Safety Afloat commitment card, and be dedicated to full compliance with all nine points of Safety Afloat.
Swimming and Water Rescue
Training for BSA Swimming and Water Rescue provides BSA leaders with information and skills to prevent, recognize, and respond to swimming emergencies during unit swimming activities.
Young people today seek increasingly challenging activities, many of which involve trekking in backcountry or wilderness areas.
Climb On Safely
Climb On Safely is the Boy Scouts of America’s procedure for organizing BSA climbing/rappelling activities at a natural site or a specifically designed facility such as a climbing wall or tower.
Driver Improvement Program
Accidents are quite rare in Scouting. But the majority of Scouting accidents happen on the road to or from Scouting activities.
STEM Nova Counselor Training
STEM is part of an initiative the Boy Scouts of America has taken on to encourage the natural curiosity of Scouts and their sense of wonder about these fields through existing programs, from archery to welding.
STEM Supernova Mentor Training
The BSA’s Supernova awards honor Scouts for exceptional STEM achievement. There are seven Supernova awards: one for Cub Scouts, one for Webelos Scouts, two for Scouts in Scouts BSA, and three for Venturers.