Navigating Course Information
  • Complete course descriptions and prerequisites are included on this page
  • Course Titles/Coordinator names act as a hyperlink to coordinator biographies
  • Course Outline (at the bottom of each course) is linked to a day by day outline
  • "Seats Available" changes to a "Waiting List" link when the course is full
  • To register for a course, go to "Registration"
 

Course 1: Taking Your Research to the Next Level
Paula Stuart-Warren, CG, FMGS, FUGA

It’s time. We all reach the point where we need to learn about other resources and delve more deeply into those we already know. This is the way we take our research to a higher level, solve problems, and advance our family history. This course provides in-depth learning on 19th-21st century U.S. resources and the methodology for using them. We probe deeper into the content, origin, location, and interpretation of records. It’s not just listening to lectures, but interactive classroom time that take you beyond basic research tools. On-site Family History Library support and a computer lab from course instructors provide one-on-one assistance and guidance with your own research.

Suggested prerequisites:

Experience researching in a variety of records and repositories, familiarity with FamilySearch.org and other family history websites, reviewing at least one basic genealogy guide, and previous classroom learning related to family history.
 
Suggested requirements:
Students are encouraged to bring a laptop computer or tablet for project work during the week.
 
Additional Instructors:
Luana Darby, MLIS
Cyndi Ingle
Debra Mieszala, CG
 
Course Outline (link will open in separate window)
 
Regular Price: $495.00 Member Price: $445.00 Seats Remaining: 3

Course 2: Refining Internet and Digital Skills for Genealogy
Cyndi Ingle

Are your digital files in disarray? Do you know exactly where all of your research notes and documents reside on your computer? Do you find yourself searching over and over again for the same thing, only to end up in the same place with the same information and no forward movement in your research? Do you know all the secrets and techniques for digging deeper into online databases and locating new information? If your answer is no, this course will help you get your digital life organized and productive.

A prepared and organized genealogist is a productive genealogist. Similarly, a prepared and organized digital workspace is a productive research instrument for that genealogist. The Internet and computers of all types require an understanding of all the ways in which they can be used to take advantage of their maximum potential as exemplary research tools.

The five days in the course are organized into categories intended to help the participant structure their computer and then their time spent online. Each day we have built into the schedule time to work on the computer for practical application of the things learned that day. The course will cover organizing computers and digital filing; effectively searching the Internet, online databases and records repositories; and technology tools that enhance the research experience such as spreadsheets, tables, timelines, maps, and foreign language translation.  Students will have the opportunity to participate in a research plan or project and discuss whether or not a complex research problem can be solved solely online utilizing the tools learned throughout the week.

Requirements:
Students must bring a laptop (preferred) or mobile device on which to practice new skills in class. Students should have existing accounts for tools that will be used in the class, such as Dropbox, Google Drive, Evernote, FamilySearch, Ancestry, Scrivener, Word, and Excel. The course will not address specific types of hardware and operating systems. Examples will be given on a Windows laptop, demonstrating concepts which can be used across various platforms and software types.

Optional:
Students may bring specific examples of past online problems that they want to explore.  Internet service (Wi-Fi) will be provided at the facility; however, students may elect to bring their own Wi-Fi hotspots to ensure personal connectivity.

Additional Instructors:  
Jeanne Larzalere Bloom, CG
Melissa Johnson, CG
Thomas W. Jones, PhD, CG, CGL, FASG, FUGA, FNGS
Michael D. Lacopo, DVM
 
Course Outline: (link will open in separate window)
 
Regular Price: $495.00 Member Price: $445.00 Seats Remaining: 3

Course 3: Diving Deeper into New England
D. Joshua Taylor, MA, MLS

When encountering New England roots, many find a rich treasure of previous research, compiled materials, and records dating back to the early 1600s. Yet, within the branches of our New England roots exist assumptions, errors, missing individuals, and incomplete information. Starting with the colonial period and moving to the 1850s, “Diving Deeper into New England” will take an in-depth look at New England research, specifically focusing on little-known and underused sources. 

Individual sessions will provide a deeper historical and social context for New England research, provide specific tools for key New England states, and provide an overview of the research process through a variety of examples and case studies. In addition, consultation sessions and a closing question and answer session will allow time for you to gain advice on your personal New England research with the course coordinator and instructors. 

Additional Instructors:
Catherine B. W. Desmarais, CG
Diane Gravel, CG

Course Outline (link will open in separate window)

Regular Price: $495.00 Member Price: $445.00 Seats Remaining: 2

Course 4: Virginia from the Colonial Period to the Civil War
Sold Out
Barbara Vines Little, CG, FNGS, FVGS

The course will focus on Virginia resources and the background information (law, social customs, geography, etc.) needed to properly interpret them. Substitutes for missing records, Virginia records in out-of-state repositories, and unique manuscript records in small, local repositories will be addressed. Emphasis will be placed on records available either online or through microfilm loan programs; however, researchers will also be introduced to records available only in manuscript form at either the local level or in larger research repositories. 

Prerequisites:
Prior Virginia research experience is not needed, but attendees with at least intermediate general research experience will gain the most from the presentations.
 
Additional Instructors:
Victor S. Dunn, MS, CG
 
Course Outline:  (link will open in separate window)
 
Waiting List Signup Form

Course 5: Utilizing a Full Array of Sources for Researching your Norwegian, Danish, and Icelandic Ancestors
Elaine E. Hasleton, AG and Jeff Svare, AG

This course will discuss not only the most-frequently used records such as the church and census, but it will also include in-depth instruction into the probate and court, taxation, land and property, military, minorities, and DNA resources. 

Additional information will be shared about local organizations, National Archives online catalogs, as well as Scandinavian-American organizations and their record availability. Case studies regarding the use of these records will provide an in-depth knowledge you have never had before!   Also instructing:  Finn Karlsen, retired, Norwegian Regional Archives, Trondheim, Norway.

Additional Instructors:
Finn Karlsen (retired, Norwegian Regional Archives)
Anka Schjerven Magee, AG
Geoffrey Fröberg Morris, AG

Course Outline: (link will open in separate window)

Sponsored by: Family Search
Regular Price: $495.00 Member Price: $445.00 Seats Remaining: 1

Course 6: Adding Social History to Your Genealogy
Gena Philibert-Ortega, MA, MAR

Genealogy research is often relegated to the dates and places of our ancestor’s lives. However, when we focus solely on names, dates, and places we miss out on rich details that tell a story and also lead to additional documents. In the course of learning more about everyday lives we uncover resources that are not utilized by genealogists. This course will look beyond the typical genealogy sources and concentrate on ways that genealogists can bring their ancestors to life.

This course will assist genealogists to understand historical resources available for genealogical research; provide information about repositories that can provide documents that detail an ancestor’s community; teach ways to combing history with genealogy; provide background into our ancestor’s lives; explain ways to include social history with our genealogical narrative; and help students better understand the unique experiences of women, children and immigrant ancestors.
 
Prerequisites:  
Must have knowledge of basic genealogy research techniques and be able to understand the basics of what is involved in a reasonably exhaustive Internet search.
 
Additional Instructors:
Luana Darby, MLIS
Jean Wilcox Hibben, PhD, CG
 
Course Outline:  (link will open in separate window)
 
Regular Price: $495.00 Member Price: $445.00 Seats Remaining: 2

Course 7: Settlers in the New World and Immigrants to a New Nation: Researching Ancestors from Overseas
John Philip Colletta, PhD, FUGA

The immigration saga—leaving a homeland for a new life in America—tends to be the most dramatic and momentous chapter of American family history. This course explores sources and methods for reconstructing the lives of ancestors who came from foreign lands. From the 1590s, when Europeans first settled in territory that would become the Southwest and Florida, through the British colonial period of the Seventeenth and Eighteenth centuries, to the newcomers of every nationality, hue and creed who made the United States their home in the Nineteenth and Twentieth centuries, this course embraces the panorama of immigration history.

Issues discussed will include: discovering and locating the town of origin overseas; leaving home, crossing an ocean, and reaching the place of settlement; putting down roots; ferreting out biographical detail that personalizes each immigrant’s experience; and preparing for research in European records to trace family lines back in the Old Country. John Colletta and Joshua Taylor exploit an exciting panoply of online, microfilm, print and original sources to provide practical instruction, helpful tips, and individual counsel. They also share with students their considerable passion for getting to know some of our most inspiring forebears!
 
Additional Instructors:
Deborah S. Gurtler, AG
D. Joshua Taylor, MA, MLS
 
Course Outline: (link will open in separate window)
EXPANDED - if seats not shown as available; access through the waiting list; email registrar@slig.ugagenealogy.org
 
Regular Price: $495.00 Member Price: $445.00 Seats Remaining: 3

Course 8: Researching in Washington, D.C., Without Leaving Home
Pamela Boyer Sayre, CG, CGL, FUGA

This course presents some of the massive resources that are available in Washington, DC-area and other federal repositories and how to access many of them through the Family History Library (FHL), websites, and published sources.

Records from the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), the Library of Congress (LC), the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) Library, and many other repositories will be explored. Students will learn to use finding aids, online catalogs, websites, interlibrary loan, and the holdings of the FHL to find, analyze, and understand federal records spanning the eighteenth to twenty-first centuries.

Additional Instructors:
Angela Packer McGhie, CG
Richard G. Sayre, CG, CGL, FUGA

Course Outline:  (link will open in separate window)
 

Regular Price: $495.00 Member Price: $445.00 Seats Remaining: 2

Course 9: The Family History Law Library
Sold Out
Judy G. Russell, JD, CG, CGL and Richard G. Sayre, CG, CGL, FUGA

The course will cover the basic legal concepts and legal research approaches appropriate for genealogists and will require the student to employ these concepts with hands on exercises using the resources of the FHL. Topics will include courts and their records, estate laws, legislative records, pensions, and property law.

Additionally, elements of both English common law and Roman law will be introduced through classes on the legal concepts found in Irish, German, and French law that relate to research in those countries and their relevance to research in the United States.
 
Additional Instructors:
Claire Bettag, CG, FUGA
Warren Bittner
David Rencher, AG, CG
 
Course Outline: (link will open in separate window)
 
Waiting List Signup Form

Course 10: Advanced Genealogical Methods
Sold Out
Thomas W. Jones, PhD, CG, CGL, FASG, FUGA, FNGS

Students in “Advanced Genealogical Methods” will learn how to use and assemble evidence to rediscover ancestral origins, identities, and relationships that have been forgotten in the passage of time. The course will address advanced use of evidence from a variety of genealogical records and research in populations for which the usual records are in short supply. Students also will learn how to develop written proof summaries to show their conclusions’ accuracy and create a credible record of their findings for present and future generations of family historians.

Prerequisites:
This intense course is targeted to “high intermediate” genealogists who have completed an intermediate level methodology course or who have equivalent experiences, and whose research includes original land and probate records or digital or microfilmed images of land and probate records.

Additional Instructors:
Judy G. Russell, CG, CGL
Pamela Boyer Sayre, CG, CGL, FUGA
Richard G. Sayre, CG, CGL, FUGA

Course Outline: (link will open in separate window)

Waiting List Signup Form

Course 11: You be the Judge: A Practicum Using Standards to Evaluate Genealogical Work
Sold Out
Jeanne Larzalere Bloom, CG

Most courses and lectures approach genealogy standards from the perspective of how to meet standards and how to produce work that meets standards. During this course—a supervised practical application of Genealogy Standards—students will be the judges. 

Each day students will evaluate genealogical work samples of unknown quality to determine whether the samples meet, partially meet, or do not meet standards. From these exercises students will gain insight into the mindset and the habits involved in consistently producing work that meets standards. Students will develop evaluation strategies to identify weaknesses in their writing or in the writing of others. Students will begin to develop the evaluation skills needed to assess the quality of their work and the work of others. This is a forum for discussions of each standard and for substantive genealogy questions. 

The rubrics concept (what they are) and the application of rubrics (how they are used) will be introduced on the final day of the course.
 
Prerequisites:
The class will move quickly and assume that attendees are familiar with Genealogy Standards, Evidence Explained, and Numbering Your Genealogy.
 
Required Texts:
  • Genealogy Standards (2014)
  • Evidence Explained, 3rd edition
  • Numbering Your Genealogy: Basic Systems, Complex Families, and International Kin (Special Publication of the National Genealogical Society)
  • Rubrics for Evaluating New Applications for BCG Certification (free download from the BCG website)
Additional Instructors:
Jill N. Crandall, MA, AG
Stefani Evans, CG
Connie Lenzen, CG
Debra Mieszala, CG
 
Course Outline:  (link will open in separate window)
 
Waiting List Signup Form

Course 12: DNA Boot Camp: Practical Application
CeCe Moore
Have you already learned the fundamentals of genetic genealogy and are now ready to roll up your sleeves and dig in Are you itching to put your education to work? This fast-paced course will not only expand upon your knowledge, but will also explore online company tools and third party sites through exercises and hands-on practice in class.

Prerequisites:  
Attendees must have a strong grasp of foundational genetic genealogy concepts and access to autosomal DNA results from all three DNA testing companies (AncestryDNA, Family Tree DNA and 23andMe).  Completion of any of the institute genetic genealogy courses will be good preparation for DNA Bootcamp (as long as you applied what you learned after the course ended). For those who have experience working with DNA for genealogical purposes, but have not attended an institute course, exceptions can be made by submitting an essay to the instructor detailing your proficiency in this subject.

Requirements:  
Students must bring a laptop on which to practice skills during in-class labs. Electricity will be provided.
 
Additional Instructors:
Karen Stanbary, MA, CG
Paul Woodbury

Course Outline: (link will open in separate window)
 
Regular Price: $495.00 Member Price: $445.00 Seats Remaining: 3

Course 13: The Coaching Lab: Forensic Genealogy from Inquiry to Affidavit
Catherine B. W. Desmarais, CG and Amber Goodpaster Tauscher

This guided practical experience will coach students through the process of receiving, researching, and writing up a new U.S.-based probate case.  Participants will learn effective ways to communicate research findings using timesaving templates to create source-cited research logs, reports, and affidavits. Family relationship charts and document exhibits will also be developed. By applying these skills to an actual case, participants will create a better workflow and increase their business productivity.

Students will also learn about the underlying laws and concepts needed by forensic genealogists working on probate, real estate and oil and gas cases. Advanced tips for finding living people and acting as a court witness will be shared. Finally, lessons learned during a forensic genealogy career will cap off the week.

Prerequisites:

Forensic genealogy is not a beginner’s specialty. Students should have at least a year’s professional genealogy experience writing genealogical research reports for multiple paying clients before considering this course. The course is also appropriate for experienced forensic genealogists who wish to improve their skills and streamline their workflow. Students need to bring a laptop computer and possess solid word processing skills.

Additional Instructors: 
Kelvin L. Meyers
Judy G. Russell, CG, CGL

Gerald H. Smith, CG
Bethany Waterbury

Course Outline: (link will open in separate window)

 
 
Regular Price: $495.00 Member Price: $445.00 Seats Remaining: 5

Course 14: Advanced Evidence Analysis Practicum
Angela Packer McGhie, CG
This hands-on experience is an opportunity for advanced genealogists to challenge themselves and put their research skills into practice. Participants work on five complex genealogical research problems—a new one each day. The objective is to give students experience in conducting research on complex problems, analyzing and correlating information, and reaching conclusions.

Participants will practice using indirect evidence, broadening research to include the FAN club, resolving conflicts, and organizing evidence into a written summary. The research problems are varied, offering students the challenge of stretching their mind and skills in directions that their research may not normally take them.
Participants will work individually on the each of the cases and then gather to discuss their progress with fellow classmates and the instructor. They will compare sources, strategies and methodologies, discuss difficulties encountered, and receive guidance from the case study author. This course is designed for advanced genealogists who have sufficient experience and education to work on complex genealogical problems.
 
New for 2017: Each year in this course we work on five genealogical cases. For 2017 we welcomed some new instructors who will present cases covering new geographic areas, ethnicities, sources, and methodologies that we have not addressed previously in the Advanced Evidence Analysis Practicum course. 
 
Please Note:  This course will hold its first meeting on Sunday, 22 January, and meets each afternoon thereafter; the remainder of the time is spent individually researching the cases.
 
Case Instructors: 
Polly FitzGerald Kimmitt, CG
Jean Wilcox Hibben, PhD, MA, CG
Angela Packer McGhie, CG
Bethany Waterbury
Eric Stroschein
 
Course Outline: (link will open in separate window)
Regular Price: $495.00 Member Price: $445.00 Seats Remaining: 3

NOT a Course: WAIT FOR PERMISSION to select this option
Do NOT register for this course unless specifically instructed by the registration team.  
Regular Price: $495.00 Member Price: $445.00 Seats Remaining: 22