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Language of the OA

The Language of the OA encompasses style, usage, and grammar norms observed by both the Boy Scouts of America and the Order of the Arrow. The OA has developed this resource so that communications at every level of the organization are more consistent. Through periodic updates of terminology, it will become a more comprehensive primary resource to ensure chapters, lodges, sections and regions are aware of terms and style specific to the OA.

For more information on broader Scouting terms not commonly used in day-to-day OA operations, please visit The Language of Scouting and BSA Style Manual. To suggest an update and/or edit of The Language of the OA, please email @email.

TermPre-Ordeal Ceremony
Category
OA General
Definition

The first ceremony in the OA induction. 

Style and Usage

Capitalize as shown. 

Examples
TermRed Arrow Award
Category
OA General
Definition

An award presented at the National Order of the Arrow Conference that recognizes individuals who are not members of the OA for outstanding service to the OA.

Style and Usage

Capitalize as shown.

Examples
Termregion chief
Category
OA Organization
Definition

The top elected youth Arrowman in each region.

Style and Usage

Capitalize in sentence case except when preceding a name.

Examples
Termroutes
Category
100th Anniversary
Definition

ArrowTour term used to describe the map of each region's tour schedule. 

Style and Usage

Capitalize in sentence case.

Examples
TermScout executive
Category
BSA General
Definition

Scout executives are the executive directors of the local council, and must be commissioned professional Scouters with considerable experience. Each scout executive has been selected by a volunteer committee of the council executive board from a pool of candidates provided by the National Council. In addition to management responsibilities, the scout executive is the corporate secretary of the council, and the principal spokesperson to the local communities of the council.

Style and Usage

Capitalize as shown. E.g., "Jack Sears, Jr. is the Scout executive of the North Florida Council," "North Florida Council Scout Executive Jack Sears, Jr."

Examples
Termsection
Category
OA General
Definition

An Order of the Arrow section consists of lodges within a geographic area of the region. Once every year, members of lodges in the section come together for a conclave to share in fellowship, skills, and training. In addition, the section creates a monitoring/mentoring relationship with its lodges, provides leadership development opportunities, fosters understanding and adherence to national OA policies and procedures, and coordinates OA administrative and program functions. A section is led by three elected youth officers, the section chief, section vice chief, and section secretary, who are advised by an adult section adviser and professional section staff adviser.

Style and Usage

Not capitalized unless in the title of a specific section. E.g., "Section C-4" or "Section SR-7A." 

Examples
TermSection Officers' Seminar
Category
OA Organization
Definition

This event is a gathering of section officers and their advisers in a particular region for training and fellowship. In some cases only the section chief and his adviser are invited. 

Style and Usage

Capitalize as shown on first reference. Can be abbreviated as SOS for subsequent references.

Examples
TermSection Sentinel
Category
Publications
Definition

Email newsletter for section leadership, sent and managed by the National Communications Committee. 

Style and Usage

Capitalize and italicized as shown.

Examples
Termservice grants
Category
OA General
Definition

Monies provided to local OA lodges who submit an application for a service project to their council's operations and/or Scout camps. Each region can receive several grants per calendar year at the discretion of the National Order of the Arrow Committee.

Style and Usage

Capitalize in sentence case. 

Examples
Termstaff
Category
2015 NOAC
Definition

A Scout or Scouter attending the conference as a staff member.

Style and Usage

Capitalize in sentence case.

Examples
TermSummit Bechtel Reserve
Category
OA General
Definition

The present home of the Boy Scouts of America national jamboree, located in Mount Hope, WV. A Scouting high adventure base.

Style and Usage

Capitalize as shown. May be abbreviated as SBR after first reference. "The Summit" is not an appropriate abbreviation.

Examples
TermSummit Circle
Category
OA General
Definition

The OA's permanent ceremonial grounds at the Summit Bechtel Reserve.

Style and Usage

Capitalize as shown.

Examples
TermSummitCorps
Category
OA General
Definition

A national service project in 2011 at the New River Gorge to build trail for the new Summit Bechtel Reserve.

Style and Usage

Capitalize as shown.

Examples
Termten induction principles
Category
OA General
Definition

A set of presumptions that guide each step of the OA inductions process. 

Style and Usage

Capitalize as shown.

Examples
TermThe Current
Category
2015 NOAC
Definition

The daily conference newspaper.

Style and Usage

Capitalize as shown. Should always be italicized.

Examples
TermThe Hub
Category
2015 NOAC
Definition

A central gathering place at the 2015 NOAC, located at Cherry Lane Park on the Michigan State University campus, that consists of "The Experience," Adventure Central, and is the location for the Grand Hodag and the Centennial Festival.

Style and Usage

Capitalize as shown. 

Examples
TermThe Ripple
Category
2015 NOAC
Definition

The daily conference eNewsletter.

Style and Usage

Capitalize as shown. Should always be italicized.

Examples
TermThrive: A National Webinar, A Local Commitment
Category
OA General
Definition

A national webinar hosted for lodge leadership relaying information, tools, and resources from the Focus 2019 committees.

Style and Usage

Capitalize as shown. May abbreviate as Thrive.

Examples
Termtour schedule
Category
100th Anniversary
Definition

ArrowTour term that describes the overall schedule of the tour. 

Style and Usage

Capitalize in sentence case.

Examples
Termunit
Category
OA General
Definition

The smallest organization in the Boy Scouts of America. In the OA, units include Scouts BSA troops, Sea Scout ships, and Venturing crews.

Style and Usage

Capitalize in sentence case.

Examples
Termunit
Category
BSA General
Definition

The smallest organization group in the Boy Scouts of America. This term is used to refer to Scouts BSA troops, Sea Scout ships, Venturing crews, Exploring posts, and Cub Scout packs.

Style and Usage

Capitalize in sentence case.

Examples
Termvenue
Category
100th Anniversary
Definition

ArrowTour term used to describe the individual locations that the tour will stop at.

Style and Usage

Capitalize in sentence case.

Examples
TermVigil Honor
Category
OA General
Definition

Honor that recognizes youth and adult Arrowmen who have distinguished themselves in their lodge and council through exceptional service and personal effort.

Style and Usage

Capitalize as shown.

Examples
Termvisitor
Category
2015 NOAC
Definition

A non-Scout or Scouter attending the event for a day.

Style and Usage

Capitalize in sentence case

Examples