The National Institute for Genealogical Studies

LEADERS IN ONLINE GENEALOGY EDUCATION

The National Institute for Genealogical Studies - LEADERS IN ONLINE GENEALOGY EDUCATION

DNA: Special Circumstances – Adoptees & Unknown Parentage

The National Institute for Genealogical Studies is pleased to announce the launch of our newest online course.

DNA: Special Circumstances – Adoptees & Unknown Parentage
This research course explores how to use genealogy and genetics to uncover genealogical roots, connect with biological family, and better understand medical history. The emphasis will be on adoptees and those helping adoptees with their DNA and genealogy.

BASIC DNA COURSES

DNA: Introduction to Genetic Genealogy covers the basics of DNA and genetic inheritance and is a comprehensive introduction to the three main test types: mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA), Y chromosome DNA (YDNA), and autosomal DNA (atDNA). Explore how they relate to genealogy.

DNA: Autosomal DNA – Testing for Everyone examines what Autosomal or Admixture DNA (atDNA) is, how it is passed down, and what a genetic genealogy test will tell you. Discover how atDNA is a wonderful tool for unlocking your hidden past when combined with traditional paper genealogy.

DNA: Tracing Maternal & Paternal Lines focuses on two types of DNA testing for genealogy: Y-Chromosome DNA (yDNA) and mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) testing. Discover how to read and interrupt your testing results.

DNA PACKAGES

The National Institute for Genealogical Studies DNA Research packages include courses relevant to understanding DNA and how it can be used in genealogical research. The first DNA Package includes the four DNA courses listed above. The second DNA package includes the above courses, plus the four DNA courses listed below.

DNA: Understanding Testing and Research Strategies (4 course package)
DNA and Relevant Topics (8 course package)

MORE DNA COURSES

Forensic Genealogy is a fast-growing field dealing with the genealogical research that might have legal implications. This course is designed to help forensic researchers identify and contact living people. Students will learn some of the basic skills necessary to get started and investigate specific career subsets in forensic work.

Genealogy Ethical Guidelines & Standards examines various situations all researchers may encounter, exploring ethical considerations faced when sharing genealogy research. Whether you are a hobby genealogist, society member, serious researcher, or a professional genealogist, ethics affect your work and require the adherence to the standards of a Code of Ethics to make diverse ethical decisions.

Organizing a ONE NAME STUDY examines the art of researching a specific SURNAME. Course material will elaborate on the many different elements you should consider as you begin. Organizing your research, searching for primary sources around the world, analysing the data you acquire, publicising, publishing and preserving your work are topics to be thoroughly discussed along with tips and techniques in the field of One Name Studies.

Organizing a ONE PLACE STUDY studies the people in a community within the context of the place they live. A One Place Study brings family and local history together, reconstructing the community to gain insights into the lives of the people who have walked the streets, ploughed the fields, worked and worshipped in a place. Discover the sources of information available to researchers, how to access them and the fascinating details which can be uncovered.

Check our Course Calendar for when these courses are scheduled to begin and register today!
Full List of Packages
Complete List of Courses

Contact information:
1 (800) 580-0165
Email: admin@GenealogicalStudies.com
Website: www.GenealogicalStudies.com
Blog: blog.GenealogicalStudies.com 

LEADERS IN ONLINE GENEALOGY EDUCATION

 

Cultural Assimilation

Cultures involve more than just identifying specific groups of people. They actually involve deeply rooted psychological elements which tend to govern the behaviour of the members. The folkways of a family, such as traditions, foods, music, stories, etc., can be an asset when assimilating into another culture that is very similar to their own; however, it can also be a hinderance in adapting to a new environment that is glaringly different.

Exploring some of the more subtle aspects of Cultural Assimilation reveals how they impacted not only the interactions of our ancestors in their new environments, but how they may have been aided, or hampered, by the folkways of their cultural group. As you research this aspect, you will need to investigate whether our ancestors fit in easily, or if they struggled to relate. This could be especially revealing when you study the challenges they may have faced in their places of employment. Every day would have exposed new situations with so many norms for them to learn that were not “normal” to them at all. In some cultures, adapting would naturally have been easy; however, other cultural differences would emerge in stark contrast to the expected social interactions, creating uncomfortable or embarrassing situations.

By breaking down these elements and analyzing cultural identities, you can begin to piece together a picture of what our ancestors faced in their acculturation process. This could very well reveal the origins of family traits that seemed out of character, but seem to persist in the following generations.

In Demystifying Culture and Folklore, you will get a glimpse into some of the social aspects of your ancestors’ lives as they attempted to embrace a new culture, or how they struggled with conforming to a society that may not have resembled their expectations at all. Understanding these pieces of the puzzle may well explain feelings of acceptance or rejection experienced by family members.

Visit our website for a complete list of courses offered by the National Institute for Genealogical Studies.

Our Immigrant Ancestors’ Culture

Our Immigrant Ancestors faced many challenges as they embarked on the journey of resettling in a new and foreign land. Their original root cultures traveled with them, embedded in their very being and preserved within the traditions they practiced. As we Demystifying Culture and Folklore of those bravely making these life-changing decisions, we may also discover the encounters and trials they faced. How they responded often reflects their culture’s beliefs.

When we look at How Culture Affected Our Immigrant Ancestors’ Lives, many aspects become clear. We are all familiar with the term “Culture Shock,” but have you personally experienced it? Shock says, “This is not the same as what I have been used to!” Many major changes are to be expected in our new circumstances, but there are always surprise encounters that catch us off guard with stumbling blocks and obstacles to deal with that we didn’t see coming. Misunderstandings are sure to occur as cultural differences emerge and an alternate perspective is revealed. How did our ancestors adapt to their new environments? What did they keep “from the old country” and what was exchanged for their new experiences? Their struggles were real and their stories may be revealed as you carefully explore this time period in their lives. Everyone’s story will be different, but with familiar similarities as they found their place in their new communities. Whether it was in the work place, or interacting with new neighbours, our ancestors made adjustments to fit in. It is interesting to see some strong traditions thrive, while other customs from the home country are traded or forgotten in just a few generations.

As you continue to work through the Demystifying Culture and Folklore course, you will recognize elements for their root cultures have indeed survived, although you may not have known its origins until revealed by digging deeper into your family’s traditions.

Visit our website for a complete list of courses offered by the National Institute for Genealogical Studies.

Religious Records

The Religious beliefs of our ancestors influenced, not only their daily lives, it often impacted the direction of their life journey. It caused some to pull up roots and leave friends and family members behind in their country of origin in order to pursue emigration, and perhaps religious freedom as well. Many relocated their own families to new areas with others of similar beliefs. Wherever they were, they have left records behind that tell that part of their stories. Every country-specific certificate program includes research into this vital part of their family story. In addition to Birth, Marriage and Death records, we need to look for Baptisms, Marriages and Burials, along with other religious ceremonies, according to their beliefs and customs. Here are many of the religious records courses:

American: Religious Records – Part 1
American: Religious Records – Part 2
Australian: Church Records 
Canadian: Religious Records 
Eastern European: Church Records
English: Parish Records 
English: Poor Law & Parish Chest Records 
English: Non-Anglican Church Records 
German: Church Records 
Irish: Conformist and Non-Conformist Church Records
Italian: Catholic Church Records – Part 1 
Italian: Catholic Church Records – Part 2 
Research: Jewish Records 
Scottish: Old Parish Records 
Scottish: Beyond the OPRs 

Religious Records provide an intimate glimpse into the personal lives of its members. Three additional courses that will assist you in expanding this aspect of your ancestors’ research are listed below. Each will inspire you to dig deeper and learn what motivated the decisions they made – sometimes altering the futures of their family members for generations.

Research: Social History 
Life of Our Ancestors 
Demystifying Culture & Folklore 

The Palaeography course goes beyond looking at handwriting and transcriptions; it takes an in-depth look into a variety of historical documents, including older church records. Those may contain records written in Latin as well as the languages of their country of origin. The course material covers many of the feast days and festivals they would have attended in the church calendar, and reveals restrictions which explain why ceremonies occurred – or didn’t occur – on specific dates. The Holiday Traditions of today may be quite different than how your ancestors celebrated in their time period.

Palaeography: Reading & Understanding Historical Documents 

All of these bring greater understanding of their lives. When you are researching, take note of the religious affiliations recorded on records such as census returns or civil registrations. These could be clues for where to look for additional records in their communities. Religious Records are a valuable resource and should be included in every research project.

For a complete list of courses from The National Institute for Genealogical Studies, please visit our website.

 

 

 

Demystifying Culture and Folklore: Intro

Every family historian begins their search with a few simple questions: Who were my ancestors? and… Where did they come from? Most of our first and second-generation answers are easily obtained from close family members – usually. However, our true story is far deeper than the basic facts of names, dates and locations. The complexity of our families cannot be defined in simple terms; we need to explore the inner dynamics and subtleties in the undercurrents of the inter-woven fabric of our family.

Culture and its accompanying behaviours, traditions, stories, etc. (Folklore) are an interesting and integral part of who we are as human beings. As we explore our roots, we are encouraged to begin to determine:

  • how has our primary cultures (race, ethnicity, nationality) influenced our ancestors over the generations; and,
  • how has our subcultures (religion, family, occupations, etc.) been formed and influenced by the intergenerational folklore passed down from our ancestors.

Looking more intently into our own lives and the lives of our forebears, we will discover unique family experiences, and uncover what has been hidden in plain sight. Unlike other research projects where official documents are accessed, and the basic facts are extracted and analyzed, examining the inner workings of our families – the things that have not been written down and perhaps never previously investigated, will stimulate the “why” questions for further study. These cause us to dig deeper in order to gain an understanding of the origins of our own folkways.

In the course Demystifying Culture and Folklore, each component will stimulate the need for deeper investigation and will prompt participants to pursue “the rest of the story” to verify what was revealed. The outcome will be a richer understanding of our family and the lives of our ancestors – Demystifying its unique Culture and the Folklore that has been passed down the generations.

Visit our website for a complete list of courses offered by the National Institute for Genealogical Studies.

Timelines for the Ladies in our Tree

One of the most useful tools in our Research Toolbox is the creation of Timelines. There are various types or styles, but essentially, a Timeline is a chronological list of the life events experienced by our ancestors. Use the method that works for you, one that records the information in an organized sequence.

Major events to include are the births, marriages and deaths (BMDs) of their family members. Be sure to include the locations and dates, and most importantly, the source citations for the origins of your information. This can be as simple as stories from an oral interview with Aunt Gladys, or information extracted from a letter or diary, or transcribed entries from the Family Bible.

Historical and local events should be included in your timelines as these influenced our ancestors, impacting them both directly and indirectly, and effecting their daily lives. Exploring the Timelines of our ancestors brings their lives into focus. Events at specific times had a great impact on these families, such as wars, conflicts, natural disasters and epidemics. Seeing them as a whole, rather than as separate, isolated events, helps us to understand the situations our ancestors faced and perhaps, what led to life-changing decisions.

Timelines also reveal any gaps in our research. We can then easily identify where we need to focus our research skills next. Filling in these gaps may break down a brick wall, or provide the clue needed to direct our next research steps.

Further information on researching your female ancestors can be found in the National Institutes for Genealogical Studies course: Research: Grandmothers, Mothers & Daughters – Tracing Women 

Digging Deeper into HER Story

Social History invites you to take a peek into the everyday life of your ancestors and reveals their interactions with their friends and their families. No one lives in a vacuum. We take on many, many roles during our lifetime. It was no different for your female ancestors. They fulfilled many roles, especially as Grandmothers, Mothers and Daughters within their family units. They were also cooks, teachers, housewives, event planners and chauffeurs – and that’s only in the home! Occupations will vary depending on their residence and the time period they lived in. Some common occupations include: seamstress, servant, domestic, bookkeeper, teacher, nurse, and so many more.

They belonged to organizations, such as church guilds and charities. The potential list is endless. They participated in community life and they made contributions that may or may not be recorded. Resources may not be in the usual places. We need to think outside of the usual documents and search for clues related to their interests and local commitments within their communities. They may be behind the scenes, but don’t let their involvement be forgotten.

Create a list of possible sources to include in your Research Plan. Do you know what her interests were? Do you have an occupation for her on her marriage record or a census record? Have you searched community newspaper articles to find activities she participated in? These are just a few suggestions to get you thinking. Where will you look?

Further information on researching your female ancestors can be found in the National Institutes for Genealogical Studies course: Research: Grandmothers, Mothers & Daughters – Tracing Women

What’s in a Name?

The most challenging part of researching your female ancestors may be locating her maiden name. What was her name at birth? There are regions where your maiden name is always your legal name and it is not changed upon getting married. This is true for the province of Quebec in Canada. However, the most common practice in the past has been for women to take on their husband’s surname and pass it down to the next generation through their children. The maiden name is can be lost, especially if she moves away from the area of her birth. Even harder to track is when she becomes Mrs. John Smith, or even Mrs. J. Smith, in the records rather than using her full name.

An interesting clue can be found in the naming tradition of passing the mother’s maiden surname down to her children as a middle name, or even as a first name. If you see a surname as a given name, seek out its origin. A word of caution: Do not assume that this will always lead to a direct ancestor. The name may have been given for another reason. This is for sure – this middle surname has a story. Do your research and find the origin.

Create a list of Research Strategies. Census records may list a family member with a different surname. For example: the brother-in-law’s name is John Baker. Head of household’s wife’s maiden name MAY be Baker. Always seek documents to confirm your theory. Take note of witnesses at marriages and baptisms. These may be family members.

Further information on researching your female ancestors can be found in the National Institutes for Genealogical Studies course: Research: Grandmothers, Mothers & Daughters – Tracing Women

Researching HER Story

Our female ancestors often present many challenges in our research. They aren’t really hidden, but they can at times seem to be invisible in the documents. The Research: Grandmothers, Mothers & Daughters – Tracing Women  course offers Strategies and Guidelines to researching women’s history. Documenting the women in our tree may seem daunting, but she has left clues. You just need to uncover them.

As with all research, we start with our Home Sources. What do we know and How do we know it? Many clues can be gleaned from Diaries, Journals and Letters. These are a wealth of information and provide a glimpse into your ancestors’ daily life.
Heirlooms and Keepsakes are cherished family treasures. Do you know the stories behind them? Have you written it down so it will not be lost once you are gone?

Clothing and Jewelry show her style. Have you found photos of her wearing those pieces? It is even better when we can tie them together with a story or their origin.

Recipes and Traditions, especially around the holidays, have been passed from generation to generation. However, have they been written down? Do you know why certain food are prepared for specific holiday meals? Too many oral traditions have been lost once out of living memory. Ask elderly family members. What are their memories? How did they celebrate when they were children? For family recipes, be sure to record the recipes. A pinch of this and a dash of that – Have you tried to make it yourself? It may turn out differently in our modern ovens compared to using a wood stove or prepared over a fire!

Further information on researching your female ancestors can be found in the National Institutes for Genealogical Studies course: Research: Grandmothers, Mothers & Daughters – Tracing Women

Genealogy?

What does Genealogy mean?

A definition found in the dictionary states that “genealogy is the science of tracing your family back through the centuries.” Genealogies record the descent of an individual or a family from a certain ancestor.  It is the study of your pedigree.

via Canva.com

What the dictionary does not explain is the fun and the challenge you can have as you climb your family tree. Think of genealogy as a big, huge puzzle. And you are but one piece of that puzzle.

The mystery in this puzzle is that once you get started, you never know where you’re going or what you’ll find once you get there. With our Methodology-Part 1: Getting Started course you will learn more about these genealogy puzzle pieces. 

 

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