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The Impact of Scouting on Educational Performance

Scouting Impacts Educational Performance in So Many Ways from Emotional Intelligence to Creativity, Problem Solving and Conflict Resolution. Find out what the National Institute of Health learned about Scouting.

Scouting in its nature, is an educational program.  It is designed to educate and train youth on how to make ethical and moral decisions throughout their lives under the guidance of the Scout Oath and Law.  The Impact of Scouting on Educational Performance is often hyperbole – until scientists decided to take a look. 


In a study published by the National Institute of Health in 2020, researchers found:

...non-formal educational activities can enhance the acquisition of key skills in education and their results show that participants in the Scout movement from the age of Cubs (children aged 8 to 10 years) acquired the skills of adaptation, communication, creativity, emotional intelligence, entrepreneurial spirit, leadership, problem solving and decision-making.

National Institute of Health Tweet

Creativity, adaptability, emotional intelligence, entrepreneurial spirit, leadership, problem solving and decision making – highly valued qualities in high performing students. Scouting builds these qualities in youth by challenging them (A Scout is Brave) to try and do new things; to encourage them with the EDGE Method (Educate Demonstrate Guide Enable); leadership is built using the Patrol Method and rotating youth through assignments; and creative thinking is developed by exposing youth to a broad array of life skills.  Finally problem solving, decision, entrepreneurial spirit and emotional intelligence are rooted in the Scout Oath “to help other people at all times” and the Scout Law – Trustworthy, Loyal, Friendly, Courteous, Kind – all elements of entrepreneurs who bring out the best in others because they give the best of themselves.\

The researchers also looked that the development of social skills that are widely believe to improve student performance and they found:

...the Scout movement improves social skills by ensuring that there are five aspects of student behavior that change for the better through the enjoyment of this free time option: personality, discipline, knowledge, skills and confidence. Similarly, Bakhri and Fibriant affirm the influence of the Scout movement on social skills, outlining a clear positive relationship between scouting and the social skills of the student.

National Institute of Health Tweet

The Patrol Method in Scouting establishes behaviors of discipline, documenting performance, tracking and measuring activities and working with others to get jobs done right and get to the real adventure.  The Patrol Method drives leadership among a diverse collection of youth members in and out of Troops.  These skills are backed up by being Courteous, Kind, Cheerful and Friendly.

The overall findings were that Scouting programs:

  1. (sic) had statistically significant differences in academic performance, valued through the average grades of the students, in favor of those that practice scouting, with quite a wide difference, as shown in Table 3. The size of the effect on the same line through the d of Cohen corroborated that the differences between the groups is high.
  2. we can see how there are statistically significant differences only in the conflict resolution factor with greater ability in favor of scouts. In all cases, the differences are non-existent or small between the groups, as confirmed by the d of Cohen.

Scouting is Prepared for Life.  The ability to resolve conflicts amicably without resulting to violence or verbal insults.  The ability to be resilient and try new things and think creatively to solve problems is part of the Scout Skills all scouts are taught.  The emotional intelligence comes directly from the Scout Oath serving God, Country, Community and yourself.  Scouting improves reading comprehension, speaking abilities and interpersonal skills that are highly valued in the work force today.  Camping, cooking, hiking, swimming, cycling, shooting sports and more are all designed to build confidence in themselves, strong self esteem and lead others amicably.  Isn’t it time your child joins the Scouts?

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