Hundreds of people have one of two genealogical credentials. Within this group of credentialed people, there are two smaller groups with impressive achievements.
- There are the dual-credentialed people who hold both levels of credential from BCG: Certified GenealogistSM and Certified Genealogical LecturerSM. Search the BCG roster for the credential CGLSM. They total 16.
- Then there are the cross-credentialed people who hold both types of credentials: AG® from the International Commission for the Accreditation of Professional Genealogists (ICAPgen) and CGSM from the Board for Certification of Genealogists (BCG). Search the BCG roster for the credential AG®. They total 13.
Jim Ison, AG®, CGSM, spoke to the ICAPgen conference in 2009 about how important credentials were to a working genealogist. This is the message that a credential gives your potential clients:
- It shows a commitment to your field.
- It demonstrates expertise beyond the norm.
- It demonstrates adherence to approved standards
- It shows that your skills and knowledge were independently verified.
- It provides for an increased level of trust due to the Codes of Ethics.
In addition, Jim shared two graphics developed for this lecture. They are based on a study of the membership of the Association of Professional Genealogists in 2009 so the details may vary this year. They show that having a credential makes the professional genealogist stand out from the thousands of other genealogists working in the field.
There were only thirteen cross-credentialed genealogists in 2009. The commitment to qualifying for a credential also involves a commitment to renewing each credential every five years. Both tasks take experience, hard work, and the courage to be measured against standards.
If you want to understand more about either credential, consider attending Course 5 at the 2014 Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy. For information, see our blog posting “Credentialing: Accreditation, Certification, or Both?” Online registration begins 1 June 2013 at 9:00 AM Mountain time and many courses fill within minutes.
Updated 3 June 2013 to correct number of course.