Wednesday, April 20, 2011

March and April 2011 Classes - National Institute for Genealogical Studies

Last month, I finished up the Analysis and Skills Mentoring Program, Part 1 at the National Institute for Genealogical Studies. This class afforded a chance to get personal instruction from several instructors. The class began with a short series of assignments designed to assess your genealogical analysis and problem solving skills after taking the beginning level classes. You are asked to analyze hypothetical situations and form a simple research plan based on that data.

The class includes two individual and at least one group consultation. Any registered student can attend almost any group chat session at any time - this class requires that you attend at least one.

I felt very reassured by my two individual sessions with instructors. The purpose of both is to gauge your genealogy knowledge and experience to this point, and address any major concerns you have after taking the beginner's level genealogy classes. Both instructors thought that I was doing very well, and made helpful suggestions about certification and research in general. It was good to speak with people who could serve as mentors about my progress, as I do most of my work online and haven't taken many opportunities to interact with other researchers yet.

Speaking of which, the group chat session was also helpful. Unfortunately, it was a little difficult to communicate with each other, as only one person besides the instructor had a working microphone (I had to type questions, as I have not figured out how to get this mic to work right on this computer). There were not many people there, as it is difficult to coordinate many people in different time zones coming to a session at the same time.

I was able to chat quite a bit with fellow blogger Julie Cahill Tarr ( It was great to speak to her also, because we share a lot of the same concerns about certification and training. Good luck, Julie!

I'm also taking:

-Methodology Part 3
-US: Religious Records - Part 2
-US: Vital Records, Understanding & Using The Records

More on those to come. Right now, I have some very important hockey to be watching.


  1. Thanks for the shout out! I'm finished with all the beginner courses, which is it for now simply because funds are lacking. But once things get turned around, I hope to be right on your heals. BTW, I did get the packet from BCG and am formulating some plans. Making progress!

    Good luck on your upcoming classes!

  2. Isn't that packet a little...intimidating? It's funny, I was having that exact thought when I found the little card in there that says "Feeling a Little Intimidated?"

    After I sent in my application form, I got an invitation to a Google Group to discuss general questions about certification with others who are preparing their portfolio. It seems like it will be a really helpful community.

    I'm running low on fundage also - I might have to take a little break in a month or so, or maybe just take one class...but yeah, it's been difficult to arrange financially.

    Hope to see you in class again soon! :)