Course Three – Advanced Methodology & Evidence Analysis

UpcomingCourse Three – Advanced Methodology & Evidence Analysis

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  • December 21, 2020
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    Details Price Qty
    Course Three $545.00 (USD)   Goes On Sale
    March 6, 2021
  • Course Three
    July 25, 2021 - July 30, 2021
    10:30 am - 2:30 pm

Course Three — Advanced Methodology and Evidence Analysis

Registration opens Saturday, 6 March 2021 at 1:30pm ET

[Maximum: 30 students]

Course Coordinator

Judy G. Russell, JD, CG®, CGLSM


Building on the basics taught in Course 1 (Methods and Sources) and Course 2 (Intermediate Genealogy and Historical Studies), Course 3 is designed to develop and foster advanced skills by concentrating on problem-solving techniques. Its focus is on the proper application of the Genealogical Proof Standard (as explicated through BCG’s Genealogy Standards, 2019 version) to a wide variety of record types to solve complex research problems. Where beginning genealogy students need to learn what records exist to accurately identify their families, and intermediate genealogy students need to learn where records may be found, particularly those not readily available online, advanced genealogy students need to learn how to use records in ways that may be neither intuitive nor obvious to bridge the gaps left by time and record loss. Thus, the course has three fundamental objectives:

  • that students develop an understanding of the elements of advanced methodology;
  • that students develop a deeper understanding of the sources employed in advanced genealogical research; and,
  • that students begin to understand some of the problems involved in and research techniques designed to solve problems in complex or unique research domains.

Prerequisites, textbooks, and other student information


Completion of IGHR Course Two — Intermediate Genealogy and Historical Studies;

or completion of the SLIG course Advanced Genealogical Methods,

or the GRIP course Advanced Research  Methods, coordinated by Thomas W. Jones;

or completion of the 16-lesson NGS home-study course, American Genealogy (“graded” option, only);

or completion of the PLCGS program (Professional Learning Certificate in Genealogical Studies) from the National Institute for Genealogical Studies, University of Toronto;

or completion of the Genealogy Certificate program from Boston University;

or certification by BCG; or accreditation from ICAPGen;

or a research paper submitted to and approved by the course coordinator. The paper will be due March 1, 2021.

Course requirements:

Students must be working at a solid high-intermediate level before attempting this course. Merely taking Course 2 without putting its lessons into practice will not suffice for Course 3.

Required textbooks: None.

Recommended textbooks:
Familiarity with Genealogy Standards (BCG, 2019) and Evidence Explained (Mills, 3d ed. rev., 2017) are strongly recommended. Mastering Genealogical Proof (Jones, 2013) and Mastering Genealogical Documentation (Jones, 2017) will be helpful.

Course Schedule

10:30 – 11:00 Course Introduction (Russell)
11:00 – 12:15 Fundamentals of Genealogical Evidence (Russell)
12:15 – 12:30 Break
12:30 – 1:45 Fundamentals of Genealogical Evidence (Russell)
1:45 – 2:45 Lunch
2:45 – 4:00 When the Records Conflict (Russell)
4:00 – 4:15 Break
4:15 – 5:30 Citation: Understanding the Material, Knowing Where to Find It (McDonald)
10:30 – 11:00 Citation Homework Review (McDonald)
11:00 – 12:15 Reach for the Power Tools: Transcriptions & Abstractions (McDonald)
12:15 – 12:30 Break
12:30 – 1:45 Finding the Record You Don’t Know Exists (Johnson)
1:45 – 2:45 Lunch
2:45 – 4:00 The Goldmine in Government Documents (McDonald)
4:00 – 4:15 Break
4:15 – 5:30 Government Documents Library Walkthrough (McDonald)
10:30 – 11:00 Transcription Homework Review (McDonald)
11:00 – 12:15 Legal Foundations of Genealogy (Russell)
12:15 – 12:30 Break
12:30 – 1:45 Rural Research Strategies (Rencher)
1:45 – 2:45 Lunch
2:45 – 4:00 Research Strategies: Female Ancestors (Johnson)
4:00 – 4:15 Break
4:15 – 5:30 Local Land Records: Analysis, Correlation & Interpretation (Russell)
10:30 – 11:00 Government Documents Homework Review (McDonald)
11:00 – 12:15 Federal Land Records: Analysis, Correlation & Interpretation (McGhie)
12:15 – 12:30 Break
12:30 – 1:45 Probate Records: Analysis, Correlation & Interpretation (T. Jones)
1:45 – 2:45 Lunch
2:45 – 4:00 Colonial Research Strategies: Overseas Records (Rencher)
4:00 – 4:15 Break
4:15 – 5:30 Urban Research Strategies (Strauss)
10:30 – 11:45 DNA Evidence: Analysis, Correlation & Interpretation (Johnson)
11:45 –12:00 Break
12:00 – 1:15 Case Study: Correlating Evidence (Russell)
1:15 – 1:30 Break
1:30 – 2:30 Where to from here? (Russell)


Course Faculty

Judy G. Russell, JD, CG®, CGLSM, Course Coordinator
Melissa Johnson, CG®
Thomas W. Jones, PhD, CG®, FASG, FUGA, FNGS
David McDonald, DMin
Angela Packer McGhie, CG®, FUGA
David E. Rencher, AG®, CG®, FIGRS, FUGA
Michael L. Strauss, AG®