Resource Library

Between 2001 and 2004 the American Camp Association conducted national research with over 5000 families from 80 ACA-Accredited camps to determine the outcomes of the camp experience as expressed by parents and children.

Parents, camp staff, and children reported significant growth in:

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In 2003-2004 the American Camp Association conducted research with over 7600 campers (aged 10-18) from just over 80 ACA-Accredited camps to determine the degree to which developmental supports and opportunities were reported/received by those campers.

Which of the critical youth development domains do you believe was the strongest in camps, and which presents the greatest opportunity for improvement?

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In 2004-2005 the American Camp Association completed a Program Improvement Project with twenty-three ACA-accredited camps to learn what strategies and approaches would help strengthen the experiences of youth in four important developmental areas:

  • Supportive Relationships
  • Safety (emotional and physical)
  • Youth Involvement (including decision-making and leadership)
  • Skill Building

Most of the camps experienced improvement in one or more of these areas and their associated domains. We learned that:

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ACA Camp Business Operations Report
Published Date: 2015-03-23

Access the most recent budget and finance data for camps. Questions this year included scholarship information, discounts, marketing strategies used, revenue sources, weekly fees, detailed expenditures, profitability, and more. For ease of application, there are two sets of findings: one for overnight camps and one for day camps. Each set (overnight/day) includes:

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The American Camp Association (ACA) continues to support the importance of research efforts into the business of camp operations through an annual systematic survey process focused on important business aspects. The focus for 2015 was on the collection of staff compensation, benefit, and professional development information.

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The ACA Camp Sites, Facilities, and Programs Report: 2014 is an invaluable resource for camps interested in examining their business operations around programs, grounds, and facilities. Data for this report were gathered in November of 2013 in a survey of 1,350 camp owners and operators who were randomly selected based on stratified sampling to represent the almost 2,700 camps affiliated with the American Camp Association.

Information is available for camp:

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ACA Youth Outcomes Battery
Published Date: 2015-08-20

Want youth feedback about outcomes from your program?

Camp Youth Outcomes BatteryACA offers data-gathering youth self-report measures that focus on common camp outcomes related to skills that build successful contributing members of our society. Questionnaires are statistically tested, camp-specific, age-appropriate, easily administered tools AND they can be customized to any camp.

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ACA Briefing Papers
Published Date: 2015-01-01

ACA wants to help busy camp professionals remain current on the research around "hot topics" that may affect our programs and practices or may be helpful with grant applications or key messages around the importance of the camp experience. "Briefing Papers" and "CARE Packages" are resource sites that continue to be developed and updated. We welcome additional contributions! If interested, please contact Deb Bialeschki at dbialeschki@acacamps.org.

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Camp Research Symposiums
Published Date: 2015-08-20

Every year the ACA National Camp Research Forum (held as a part of the ACA National Conference) is an opportunity to share cutting edge research presented by a variety of research experts about aspects of the camp experience. These presentations are compiled into an annual book of abstracts that provide information about the research findings and contact information for the researcher. As a part of the Research Forum, the Marge Scanlin Outstanding Student Research award is also presented.

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Results from the 2016 Enrollment Survey will be available in the March/April 2017 Camping Magazine.

New!  The 2016 Fall Enrollment Report is available in Summary Reports of both Camper Enrollment and Staff Recruitment and in a more detailed Full Report (includes statistical information).

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E.g., 2017-03-28
E.g., 2017-03-28