By Shannon Combs Bennett, Student
One of the most important skills a researcher needs to have under their belt is how to report the information they uncover. While there are various writing styles and types of reports to choose from there are specific items that need to be covered so your reports represent your best work. Which is why I was very excited to see a new course offered in the Skill Building track, Nuts and Bolts of Reporting Research.
While I enjoy writing blog posts and articles, reports can be like pulling teeth at times. Reports are necessary however, even if you never take a paying client in your life. Technically, your family are your clients. I am sure you have heard that we should document our own research the way we would want a professional too. So, that means you should really be writing reports for yourself, your loved ones, and your files.
Looking over the syllabus it looks like instructor Leslie Brinkley Lawson makes it easy and simple for everyone to learn. While some of it looks like review (or maybe you have attended lectures on the topic) there are also a few gems in there. Practical exercises are always a wonderful way to practice, learn, and hone your skills. Exercises and case studies are exciting additions to a course and I was thrilled to see them both being used in this course. Case studies are excellent ways to learn from someone else’s experience.
For those who enjoy writing it also looks like the last module covers various types. While I find the thought of writing an article for the Register or NGSQ stomach turning, I do know many who want to do that at some point in their life. That’s right, you can write more than just blogs and reports in this line of work!
One note, there is required books/readings for this course. Some articles/books are online or available through inter-library loan. You may purchase the books through The National Institute’s GenealogyStore. All of the books are excellent additions to your bookshelf. They include:
- Evidence Explained: Citing History Sources from Artifacts to Cyberspace
- Genealogy Standards
- Professional Genealogy: A Manual for Researchers, Writers, Editors, Lecturers and Librarians
Which means I am off to try my hand at learning more about reporting my research. Maybe it will help me make sure I have ideas for my own blog!
See you online!