Monday, 11 June 2018

Online: Genealogy: Researching Your Family Tree

Aimed at the beginner to intermediate level FutureLearn and the University of Strathclyde offer a free MOCC to help you develop an understanding of basic genealogy techniques and how to communicate your family history.
The course covers:

  • A consideration of the differences between primary, derived primary and secondary sources.
  • An understanding of the importance of knowing who made a document and why and how they were created. *A key challenge of genealogy – finding the right person among a number of possible candidates, with ever-changing spellings of surnames – will be considered.
  • Lateral ways to approach research including the FAN/cluster technique and mind mapping.
  • Primary source databases including searching techniques to deal with name change or spelling differences; these include the use of wildcards.
  • An introduction to main source types including civil, church, census and military records to give a sense of the typical type of data these records contain and how to use them.
  • Review the content of major international and selected local and specialised databases and consider ways to evaluate databases.
  • The principles of the Genealogical Proof Standard including how to establish proof and how to evaluate evidence.
  • The use of DNA testing in genealogical research with a focus on autosomal (‘cousin-matching’) and Y-testing techniques.
  • An exploration of secondary and primary sources which provide historic and social context, considering their quality and how to find them.
  • The importance of providing evidence of the sources used in family history research and an exploration of the various systems of referencing in use.
  • A consideration of tools used to store, track and analyse genealogical data; various types of family trees and reports including paper based resources, software programs and online tools.
  • What are the best ways to begin writing a family history?
  • Ways to protect and preserve physical records and digital data.
Although the course is described as not geographically specific it is given in English and there is likely to be a UK perspective.
Learn more and register at https://www.futurelearn.com/courses/genealogy#section-overview



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